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Old 11-04-2009, 09:50 PM   #21
Erick Mead
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Dojo: Big Green Drum (W. Florida Aikikai)
Location: West Florida
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 2,616
Re: The Martial Art of Difficult Conversations

Kevin Leavitt wrote: View Post

Not so sure I really am going to take time to consider WHY in a physical attack, but again, I suppose it is all relative to the situation.

I think discussing it in terms of OODA is warranted here to provide a framework and I suppose how much time you spend or can afford to spend in the OO process of a physical attack is probably very (or shoudl be) minimal.
I think we are talking slightly past one another, but I thought my comment was that "Why" is a strategic assessment -- i.e. -- only after one is past an initial attack. Your comment seemed more tactical assessment based on likely immediate action in which "how" is more dominant than "why."

I.e. -- The order of tactical-strategic transition = 1) survive; 2) recover; 3) assess. "Why" is in assessment. Tactically or strategically I think a similar process is going on with different scales of orientation and observation. The difference between them being -- in my way of thinking -- tactical assessment deals with key factors presently or likely deployed for immediate or near engagement -- whereas strategic assessment deals with factors that are likely to change the balance of engagement that are not immediately deployed or liminally engaged.

In Col. Boyd's terms -- Stage one is in the "implicit guidance and control" side loops that we have discussed before -- dominated by Orientation (i.e -- a strong drilled training component) and Action and only secondarily by Observation (sensitivity/reactivity) --and eliminating most conscious Decision processes -- at that moment.

"Recover" is an intensive bout of Observation-Orientation OO looping without committing to any decision or action.

"Assess" is a tentative stage of Orient Decide OD "testing" where decisional strategy and eventual action begins to take shape and are weighed for likely outcomes and preferences, without foreclosing anything.

For reasons that I outline below, I think this stage of OD Orient-Decide looping should relate to the OO loop in the same basic way that the more immediate OA survival loopong should relate to the OO loops
Kevin Leavitt wrote: View Post
One concern I have concerning the practice of aikido is that we are OOers for the most part. We tend to like to work in the OO side of the house as long as possible as it is part of our philosophical make up to understand as much as possible about the situation before deciding how to act. Ironically though, our Waza is really based around spontaneous and correct action given an attack and in a way, it should become second nature to respond appropriately given a situation.
We are loopy, aren't we ...

I think that the goal of training should always be to drive action -- but without much decisional planning -- responsive and naturally from correct structural and sensory orientation -- i.e.-- the implicit guidance/control loops in Boyd's original diagram.

In my experience, this "mix" seems to allow more seamless adjustments to the inherent contingencies -- more timely (but much tighter) OO awareness correctives that avoid the dangers of OA loop -- the "automatic" or "training default" action or the linearity ( and delay) of strict OODA progession. So the OO orientation of training is not wrong, exactly -- but....

The flip side, which I think you correctly identify, is that one can fall in to "default training mode" and the endless OO loops without letting Boyd's implicit guidance/control side loops where structure and sense take over to drive OA reflexive action.

Kevin Leavitt wrote: View Post
The key here I think is that the process is not necessarily linear or sequential..and this is the real rub I have with Martial Art practices...we practice in a linear fashion WRT OODA.

Carrying this forward to the street this linear O-O-D-A habit can cause us a great deal of problems.
I agree. Aikido is intended in its takemusu aiki goal to elicit non-linear response. If I were to roughly describe this in Boyd's terminology I would say that the "implicit guidance and control" sequence would alternate btween OO Observe-Orient and OA Orient- Act so O-O-A triplet loops would mix with OO and OA binary loops. D drops out almost completely in the action cycle, but without becoming some automaton. That frees in some respects the mind to have OOD loops going on almost "above the fray" so to speak, and ceasing attempts to "will" certain or defined "ruleset" actions or results -- and so not falling into the linear trap you have correctly illustrated in OODA done "straight." The OOD loop then becomes more a matter of re-orienting the perceptive imaging mind to possibilities it opens itself to, instead of closing off free possibilities in favor of costly certainties it tries to force (usually with disproportionate effort and mostly failure).


Erick Mead
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