Every so often we hit a post along the lines of "that is not O'Sensei's Aikido" or "that isn't Aikido". Personally, I'm stumped by this.
When I see films of O'Sensei, I see lots of different things. When I see people who trained with him, I see lots of different things. When I see different brands of Aikido (pick your type) I see lots of different things. O'Sensei's Aikido changed over the years. When I look at films of him in the 50's or earlier it's much different than what we see in the 60's. So which part is the real O'Sensei Aikido?
O'Sensei radically innovated his art into something very different from what he learned. Do you think he expected his students to rigidly apply what he taught them, do it exactly the way he did and not innovate?
If the goal of teaching is to produce students that surpass you then is it not expected that they will do things you would not?
I've also heard that O'Sensei was very difficult to understand, even for Japanese. Some have suggested that he was deliberatly unclear so that a student had to search and find the answer on their own so that they might value it more. To take things even further it seems as if he suggested different things to different students.
So at the risk of burning in Aikido hell, I'd like to suggest that there is no such thing as O'Sensei's Aikido anymore. O'Sensei's Aikido died with him. So why do we get all wrapped around the axle of trying to do his Aikido when it seems as if he may not have wanted or expected us to.