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Old 09-16-2008, 04:32 PM   #44
Erick Mead
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Dojo: Big Green Drum (W. Florida Aikikai)
Location: West Florida
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 2,403
Re: How Long and In What Manner to Great Mastery?

Rob Liberti wrote: View Post
The line from anus to navel is the traditional weak vector of people's stances. That weakness disappears if you have the kind of internal power and skills we are discussing.
Statically, most of our work is done in seated kokyu dosa. The closest thing I can offhand see using that particular weakness is a technique wherein nage slides past the strike, pivoting behind and connecting the arms/hands to uke's hips or torso, typically, and then cutting down and back as nage moves forward again (but headed the same way as uke now). It's kind of an extended version of an aiki-otoshi, but without taking him over your hips. After training in three lineages I gave up on waza names as being too confusing a while ago, (I have to force myself to name them when we train) so don't ask me -- it's here somewhere I am sure: .

The technique itself actually requires the inverse of the "force without weight" used in the no-inch punch, as one is drawing in, not extending. I can reverse most those of pretty well with an anchoring that stalls nage's attempted shift and then allows a slight reversing hip shift to throw him into kuzushi behind me (particularly those that use the arms to pull vice cutting motion).

A more static example is where uke is taking nikkyo and rather than the typical take-down it is reversed and (now that you make me think about it) also goes through the line from navel to anus even though uke is roughly in hanmi. I can hold that as uke at least unitl my wrist is sore enough to want to stop.

Rob Liberti wrote: View Post
I'm trying to help you as kindly as I can come to the conclusion that statements like 'Dan uses too much earth ki (or ground ki or whatever)' really is just silly. You and anyone else from normal aikido simple cannot know enough about what we are doing to make such observations and analysis.
Since I would accept a comment on most of aikido as too exclusively emphasizing the "ki of heaven" I have always thought it was merely an observational comment -- not the criticism that is assumed. I don't mean nor did the person who made the comment mean anything other than that. "Ki of heaven/earth" is a structural and dynamic term -- none of us invented them, one is not superior to the other per se, nor are they some new-agey construct:
Rob Liberti wrote: View Post
I'm happy to discuss what I am learning and try to help the uninitiated. But it seems like you were not taking the position of being the uninitiated and that is confusing to everyone.
I am happier as well. And you are correct, but different paths does not mean that we cannot usefully relieve needless confusion between us. As you just demonstrated. All I am doing in most cases is commenting on the struggle( and it is a struggle to come up with ways of description that do not require too much in the way of explaining -- as for instance, "force without weight" which means neither "force" nor "weight" in the conventional sense. I would call it something else, but then you know that.

As I have tried to gently say in the last two posts, you are all satisfied with your terms of art, which is fine amongst the initiates. But, as you have seen, they require much explaining to relieve the confusion or ambiguity that they tend to create when using otherwise common terms with the uninitiated. When you say force I assume you mean "force" and only by dint of this controversy have we come the conclusion that your force does not mean that "force" and yet now we have agreed implicitly on what we mean. Alot of heartache at me over many posts has stemmed from trying to get defined or refined terms on similar points -- they have never been challenges or ukases on standards, they were just asking for what you just provided in two simple posts.

But using a convention also means that you remove barriers to participation in the discussion. To me that seems a good thing, but that depends on the purpose. It allows for placement of the particular study to be more closely compared in similar terms to other things. That reduces the air of unfamiliarity. I am very comfortable digesting and bringing often odd-seeming things within the margins of conventional descriptions and categories. That's most of what a lawyer does, actually -- not just argue for the sake of it, but to nail down proper names for things. To call a thing by the right name is the beginning of wisdom, say the Chinese. The cachet of perceived exclusivity by simple naming is seductive and has a very long history. It is worth begin concerned about, particularly when people get upset when you merely question the naming.


Erick Mead
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