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Old 03-08-2010, 11:23 AM   #14
Location: Massachusetts
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 3,182
Re: Sword tip movement

Steve Nelson wrote: View Post
For example, you're both essentially saying, if I'm reading it correctly, that if I stop staring at the tip of the sword, stop thinking about aikido, sword cuts or anything at all for that matter, I should end up with cleaner cuts.
Well...yeah Easier said than done, huh? But staring at the tip is the road to ruin, at least for me. Heck, staring at anything seems to not work all that well!

A lot of sword work strikes me like the old saying attributed to Tolstoy, "Try not to think of a white bear!" Telling someone what not to do is easy, but how to not-do or not-think? Instead, the training aids that we use are of the "do this instead" variety...and they work, to a point (like the bit about wringing out a towel), but I can't think of a single one of them that it is not possible to overdo, and then you're back to looking at what to not-do. That's where suburi comes in: first you try, then you fight, then you tell yourself you're doing just fine, then you know you're not, then you struggle some more, then you try this, then you try that, then you think it's fixed, then you know it's not, then you try something else, and finally you just give up and cut. Maybe that day you get one or two cuts that you're really happy with. Maybe not. It takes an odd kind of mindset to struggle with all the not-do and not-try and keep coming back for more. Efforts to find the thing that fixes it, as a matter of deliberate and conscious effort, don't seem to work so well though.
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