Thread: Off and On
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Old 05-03-2009, 11:40 AM   #8
mathewjgano's Avatar
Dojo: Tsubaki Kannagara Jinja Aikidojo; Himeji Shodokan Dojo
Location: Renton
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 2,211
Re: Off and On

I really enjoyed this article. Thank you. It hits home for me in a handful of ways, the most notable being the fact that for the last 10 years I've barely stepped on the mat, but thought about "Aikido" plenty (and tried to apply it as my core "way"). I'm sure it reflects in my nearly 1000 posts here on Aikiweb. I've noticed that when I do step back onto the mat, there's generally a different tone to how I behave and that it's generally more lucid feeling.

Peter A Goldsbury wrote: View Post
To what extent does pursuing a michi (path) require its own ethical system?
Hi Peter, I'm having a hard time processing this question, so I appologize if I'm missing the point entirely. To my mind, any time a person is present, there are ethics involved, so in that sense any michi will have its own set of ethics, but depending on how rigid the demands of conformity are, those ethics will change somewhat over time to suit the subsequent generations' needs and tastes. I suppose the issue that comes next is to what extent a michi is defined by the ethics found in its practicioners...or to what extent the michi is defined by its practicioners.

Inside the dojo, to what extent does pursuing a michi require one to pursue a particular ethical system, in terms of individual training?
If I view the michi as having a relatively fixed set of ethics, I think the practicioner must somehow include those ethics in order to walk that path. For example, in the Aikido lineages I know of, the idea of not hurting your partner is a rigid ethic. Accidents happen, but the intent of not harming our partners must be actively engaged or we "fall" off the path...forgetting for the moment that interpretation of what constitutes harm will vary.

Outside the dojo, to what extent does the ethical system pursued inside the dojo need to be manifested outside the dojo?
I guess that might depend somewhat on whether intent is considered enough in an ethical system, but my uncertain opinion is that for it to be a michi, it must actively apply outside the dojo just as much as inside.
What do you think?
Take care,

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