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Old 11-11-2008, 10:52 AM   #25
Joe McParland
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Dojo: Sword Mountain Aikido & Zen
Location: Baltimore, MD
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 309
Re: Aikido Or Squash

Simone Chierchini wrote: View Post
Unfortunately you continue to miss my point. It is not what you make out of Aikido that it is relevant for one's development. It is what you really put in your training, long lectures about it aside.
When I was a mathematician, I was passionate about mathematics. Within mathematics, I had my strengths and weaknesses in the different fields, but I did not lack passion.

So, when it came time early on to teach a core curriculum class---a class that many people must take---it was very frustrating to face people who lacked the passion that I had for math. It was even worse to see people who had the aptitude for math, but lacked the passion.

Where did my frustration come from?

I do not know why the students were there. I do not know who went on to become famous writers, artists, musicians, athletes, ... I do not know who learned something useful from me and later applied it. I do not know who, by virtue of their circumstances, came and had a difficult time, but perhaps later developed a passion for the material, perhaps becoming mathematicians, computer scientists, physicists, engineers, ... Who may have revisited because of their experience with me? Who may have tried again late after realizing I was just the wrong teacher for him?

Who knows?

Now, yes, it was my classroom. I had to be prepared, maintain discipline, present what had to be presented to the best of my ability, set a good example, grade according to standards, and so forth. All of that---being the best teacher I could be---was difficult enough at times, particularly with my own work, studies, research, family, and other interests (including aikido) weighing on me. Was my life so much different than theirs?

I am passionate about my sometimes role as an aikido teacher. I wonder, is my mind on aikido sometimes when it should be elsewhere? Do I pay enough attention to my wife, kids, friends, and other matters if I'm nearly obsessive about aikido?

Is that what comes from sincere aikido practice?

In my dojos though -and in my life- there is no space for the ones who drive circles around their front garden and say they are just back from the moon...
Live in the way that is right for you. With that, I have never disagreed. Yours is one of the thousand ways.

[Personally, I do agree: When at aikido, practice aikido according to the best of your ability. That is part of what aikido trains.]

Last edited by Joe McParland : 11-11-2008 at 10:57 AM.

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