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Old 10-02-2008, 11:10 AM   #131
Jim Sorrentino
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Dojo: Aikido of Northern Virginia, Aikido Shobukan Dojo
Location: Washington, DC
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 220
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Re: How Long and In What Manner to Great Mastery?

Dan,
Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
Jim
You spend a lot of time being seemingly contrary, and stressing either aikido and or simply skills over the power inherent in this type of training. Or at least that Aikido skills are equal to this training
Would you please provide an example of this? Honestly, I do not believe that I do this. Sorry to be so contrary!

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
You have met and trained with people who train this way as well. Your statements - when viewed as a whole in many posts - seem to express an opinion this training appears to be just another *thing* you need to do, just another *tool* in your tool box.that is marginally or partly useful in your Aikido. This would exaplin your notion of obesseeive training against multiple arts and kohei and sempai and many hours training in waza.
Again, would you please provide an example? Mark Murray asked us to speculate how the "greats" became great, and I offered a few possibilities --- none of which included "many hours of training in waza", by the way --- in addition to "this training".

No, I do not regard "this training" as just another tool in my tool box. But I am also curious about Ueshiba's other skills, such as those displayed and analyzed in the fine article on Aikido Journal here: http://www.aikidojournal.com/article?articleID=704. You may recall that Rob Liberti referred to the ability of Mitsugi Saotome and other senior aikidoka under his tutelage to move in such a way that they seemed to "disappear". How does the training that you do relate to the skill that Ueshiba displays in the portion of the film discussed in the article above?

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
Am I correct then in reading you, that apparently you feel you can handle Ark or Mike with your Aikido? That what they do is fine, but really your aikido skills would take them apart? If not-why not?
No, you're not correct --- in fact, I do not believe that I have written anything that would lead a reasonable person to that conclusion. Would you provide an example where I have said something like this?

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
I find this curious as I have seen a totally different response. Everyone I have met from 3rd Dan to 6th dan, has decided what I am doing....that the training I've shown and what they feel I am displaying- in use-is the essence of aikido. They have decided this almost immediately

So...why do you think there is such a different view between them and you?
Again, I need a cite. I believe that in all my writing about my encounters with Mike Sigman, Rob John, and Minoru Akuzawa, I have not said anything disparaging the essential nature of this training for high-quality aikido.

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
You never seem to support the idea that these skills are also stand alone power in use, you don't state it, and only stress the obverse view -such as in your quote above- when the subject is brought up. All while only talking about a push test.
Dan, please correct me if am wrong, but you yourself seem to distinguish between "these skills" and the ability to use them in a dynamic environment. That's what I believe you mean by "stand-alone power in use" --- if not, please explain.

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
Is this how you currently see these skills-as push tests? That's fine if it's due to the fact that it's all you been shown at your current level is just push tests, so its all you are currently able to assess? However, if you have been shown more, why not talk about that-since you brough it up. In other words, if you have been shown more, are your comments, in reducing these skills only to push tests, designed to demean this type of training or marginalize it? Or genuinely how you feel?
No, I do not see these skills as "mere" push-tests. Could you please cite an example where I have said that? It was you (and more recently, Mark Murray) who brought up the push test.

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
If your comments are genuine, and not political I guess it explains why you still see Ueshiba's power as waza training.
My comments are genuine, but I have never expressed the opinion that I view Ueshiba's power as waza training. (If you believe that I have, please provide the cite.) As you know, I study aikido under Mitsugi Saotome and Hiroshi Ikeda. (I believe that you have never been on the mat with either one --- is that correct?) Neither of these teachers is known for his focus on waza --- far from it, in fact. Both focus on principle-based training. That is what interests me. By the way, you should also know that I have nothing but disdain for aikido "politics" --- for example, I have hosted many people at my dojo who are not in my own teachers' tradition/approach --- so please don't try to pin that label on me, thanks.

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
I find it curious as I'd bet that on any day I could take your entire Aikido skill set apart and stop you cold, while...only...using these skills without any defined waza at all. For some reason, I think I'd include both Ark and Mike in that bet as well.
Let's be very clear: you and I have never met. I have never even seen a picture of you. Further, I do not believe that there are any videos of me doing aikido floating around --- so all you have to go on concerning my skill set is what you have been told. But let's say that you are correct in your wager: what would that prove? Please remember that I have stated that I found both Mike Sigman's and Minoru Akuzawa's skills and methods inspiring.

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
Being that I find your sentiments curious I'm wondering;
How do you see these skills- in light of or in comparison to-your aikido skill sets?
I've said it before, and I will say it again: "these skills", as I have seen them most recently expressed by Mike Sigman and Minoru Akuzawa, are essential to practicing high-quality aikido --- and you may quote me on that!

Sincerely,

Jim
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