If I may, it is on topic because it directly relates to points 3 & 4 on Dan's question list:
3. How do you see it impacting the art.
4. What happens next in your training or school?
At the outset, let me just say that I don't fundamentally disagree with anything William has said. So the issue, for me, is not whether Aiki..do is in Aikido™ or not. The issue and how it relates to points 3 & 4 is highlighted by Mike's post here
As much as I enjoy the odd Zen parable, and can grasp the intent of fingers pointing at astral bodies, I think the vagaries and nebulous descriptions do little to help further bringing Aiki..do (back?) to the forefront of Aikido™ training - which I believe is what Dan rhetorical finger is fundamentally pointing at. Not everyone has the requisite Martial IQ threshold™ (no slight intended on Rob L or his teacher) to comprehend obtuse Zen whacking sticks... which I think has its place... but it's like a good joke - the punch-line delivery and timing is important, and unless it connects with your audience, it means nothing. If you're lucky, they might get the joke 5mins later, but it would have lost its initial impact.
So, despite the convoluted manner in which William has played a very sporting and unwitting part in my argument, I submit to you that knowing what "it" is, what it "feels" like is one thing. Being able to do it is quite another, but the crux of points 3 & 4 is being able to then transmit it to others so that it is replicable (on whatever level).
To which I point you to Mike's post #167.
Vagauries and nebulous descriptions??? Unwitting??? LOL
What's not to understand????
Are any of the "descriptions" of Aikido's Internal connections beyond your intellectual grasp??? According to most including you nope. So then where am I lacking??? A simple anatomical explaination of Misogi??? Tenkan???Irimi???? Does anyone here not know
how to practice these correctly???
The problem with your line of questioning I would humbly submit is the assumption of a pre-determined outcome. Namely that because I cannot describe it I cannot have grasped it...because heck everyone else "in the know" can describe it and in simple terms too!!! So why can't you? LOL I don't know how many times I can say I have difficulty describing "it" but because I do I yawn through cheap shots via innuendo. I offer myself up to learn the concepts Honor folks for what they know and yet the boorishness continues...I will continue acting in the spirit of Aikido by humbly accepting some posters points of view that I am ignorant and silly...
The man I learned this from and most of his senior students did not speak a lick of English... After almost 20 years of practice I barely know the Japanese names for Aikido Techniques and still can't fold the perfect Hakama...However it's been shared with me that I am not that bad when it comes to Aikido...
and all I can say is words had very little to do with that...Hence my gift of the parable IT...When I first heard it It was to make this exact point... Though I did not know it at the time. I had to discover and experiance it for myself.
After years and years of Misogi & Zazen...I still don't understand what the hell I am chanting...I just follow direction and chant....That my friends can still open up the universe...
I may be in Kindergarten when it comes to this stuff but at least I still love to go to school
Anyone with any ability to teach "it" is more than welcome to show "it" to an eager audiance at our Dojo and we will humbly share what little we know.
In answer to Dan's set of questions... He and I are exactly alike in spirit and our spirits were embodied in Shoji Nishio Shihan. I am always seeking to discover more about "it" and to embrace "it" enough that I may share "it" with others. That is what Sensei wanted and he had O'Sensei's blessing to do so... I want help in anyway I can to contribute to the growth of Aikido... To nuture it's roots in Aiki to share it's spirit of love and harmony with others and there are dozens of Dans out there along with Abes.. Gleasons... Nadeaus... Tanakas...Yoshidas...Fowlers... ect ect ect All looking to grow Aikido and pass it on From the deepest root of Aiki to the highest branch of Harmony
So where are "we" at??? Standing right here rooted solidly to the ground... ready to learn and humbly share our oh so brief experiance with those who come after us.
The Bodhisattva Way