Re: How Long and In What Manner to Great Mastery?
Well, I there is a bigger issue to consider.
Many people WANT the ability of Osensei to be unattainable. It is an excuse to continue to do what makes us comfortable. Making him out to be a God pisses me off frankly. People then do the same thing to their shihan, and their teachers. They almost take pleasure in thinking that "I can never be as good as that guy...."
That is just not the way I am wired. I want to pass out Gleason sensei, Saotome sensei, Osensei, as well as Dan Harden, and whatever level Sagawa and Takeda were. And I want those people who are on this kind of wavelength to pass me out so we can push each other and support each other.
I have some ideas about stretching that may make it possible for people to learn the basics of what Dan is teaching in even much shorter time. Not only do I want to pass my teachers, I want my students to pass me - because I'm not a god (although if some one wants to write that about me on the women's locker room, then please by all means!).
One of the first rules of martial arts _should be_ that no one is on a pedastol. If you see someone up on one, do them a kindness and knock them down off of it (or take some lumps trying!).
I'm grateful to Mike Sigman for starting to discuss this stuff. I had no idea the level of efficacy that could be achieved by the average joe (meaning non-super physically gifted people like Michael Jordon for instance). I LOVE that this can be trained. You just have to be smart enough to hold so many things in your mind all at once.
I think one of the problems for people like Mike and Dan is that they really don't know what IS in aikido proper to know what to say to speak to us. If I had read that you could deliver power rapidly without committing weight and that you could completely resist a push or a pull in the typically weakest vector (through anus and navel) and further that people can maintain that kind of connection while moving rapidly around a dojo I would have looked more actively and found Dan a few years earlier. I think for them, they look at typical aikido people and don' know where to start. They probably think, wow that guy isn't very connected.
This is the issue in terms of "degree". I think Erick could barely imagine the degree of difference we are discussing. Asking about the orientation of where the feet are for the push test and thinking he can do it to some degree is fine. But when you put that degree in context, our best in aikido wouldn't be measured on the same scale of Dan or Mike or Aukuzawa or even several of their students. Which results in the "degree"of the uninitiated - while maybe far above average - to be considered basically zero.
Regardless, I continue to wonder if I can steal some of the ideas from the ki society type dojos to help transition normal aikido into aiki...do. I might have a niche there where I can be helpful. I'm fairly confident that I may end up being one of the go-to people in terms of body stretching exercises to increase the speed by which this stuff is learned.