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Old 07-09-2009, 09:40 AM   #59
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 1,996
Re: The Challenge of Not Competing

Jim Cooper wrote: View Post
Then we're always going to disagree on this.
It'd be a weird world if no one ever disagreed with me.

Jim Cooper wrote: View Post
From what my brother tells me, it was an important element in his (non-US) Navy training.
Perhaps, I didn't explain that enough. To some degree you are training for the "betterment" of yourself in the U.S. military. You do get better at a lot of things. However, that "betterment" in the end, isn't for just yourself. That "betterment" is used in the military by a chain of command. You go where you're ordered, you do what you're ordered, and if that goes against your personal inner teachings, too bad. Follow orders or get a court martial. It's really that simple.

Jim Cooper wrote: View Post
It was taught to you badly then. My culture is not that of the US, so things may well have been different for me. There is nothing that MAs offer from the POV of character building that cannot potentially be found in sport as well, but team sport offers things that MA cannot.
Well, from the overall picture of sports to the detailed distinct reason of sports, it's different than martial arts. Overall picture of sports includes being a part of a team that competes in front of an audience. And that's not always a good thing:

When is the last time that you saw an aikido training session break out in riots? A koryu embu break out in riots?

How about why you're actually playing that sport? What's the end goal? Isn't there always some trophy or award? There are always winners and losers. Someone always defeats someone else.

And how many sport fights have their been by team players? Way too many to count.

When was the last time you saw that kind of mentality in an aikido dojo? I really beat you with that kotegaeshi? Then uke gets up and starts fighting with nage for real? Even Tomiki competition was created with something else in mind besides win-lose.

The martial arts (at least the good ones) are there to teach you to be martially, budo strong so that you can live without fear, without doubt about effectiveness, without resorting to a crush the other person mentality, so that, like the saying goes, the highest quality is to choose not to fight.

There is no life and death in sport. There is no martially, budo strong to change/alter your mentality. Sure, you better yourself to a point and be a great sportsman, but then again, by the very definition of the word, you're still winning-losing in a non life threatening environment. There is no life-death in sport.

We can disagree on this, I'm fine with that. But, I find myself agreeing with Ueshiba. Martial Art, then Military, then Sport.

Jim Cooper wrote: View Post
Yes, it might have been quite a few people quite some time before him :-)
Yeah, I was lazy and didn't want to look it up.

Jim Cooper wrote: View Post
Like I said, if that's the way you think, someone taught you the wrong way to play sport. If that's normal in the US, then that's great shame.
I dunno. I see sports teams the world over with just one goal in mind, beating the other team or person. Never life-death, just a game with rules. When has one person or one team, in the history of sports, deliberately lost so that some higher ideal could be reached by the opposing person/team? That happens each and every practice in the martial arts. One person takes the "losing" side of practice, but in reality, it's never a "losing" side.

Sure, you can try to be above it all and be a great person, striving to do the best or be the best that you can. But, in the end, it is still in a limited venue with the mindset of winners and losers.

Ever hear or see a really good British Soccer player in a game, coming down to score a goal -- know that he can score because he is that good -- but decide to dial down his skill level so that the opposing team's goalie can learn to block better, thereby letting the opposing team win the game and the championship? Won't happen in sports. And if it ever does, it'll be so rare that it's statistically insignificant, or likely that bribes were involved.

Yet that very same mindset happens in good martial arts all the time.
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