Re: The purpose of Aikido?
I read this thread all the way though. I have one question whatever the purpose of Aikido started out to be or ended up is it that really important to argue? Knowing the answer will it bringer us any closer to Aikido or to O'Sensei's skill or put us on a profound spiritual path? The art is difficult as it is without complicating it even more. There are allot of good points being made.
There are two groups in these matters. One is those who think Aikido should be for fighting. The other thinks it should be for spiritual practice. Each group is respectively at the end of the spectrum where in the middle most of us are. One end tries to connivence the other end, and everyone else, to A) join them, B) they are wrong. This is a mirror image of the other opposing group's efforts and view of Aikido.
As it stands now, from what I get from this thread the purpose of Aikido is to connivence the other side and everyone else in between to jump on their band wagon.
Either you are going to stick with Aikido and accept all its warts, or you are not and move on to something else. If you move on it is just bad taste to criticize it. Pointing out all its faults and why it failed is silly, when in reality it is the person that failed the art and not the art that failed the person. I agree you do have to spend a good twenty years at it to come to it's purpose, and then there is no guarantee you will come to it purpose. I subscribe to the purpose being inherent to experience. Jumping ship, say less than 20 years or practice, and saying it is flawed is bassackward. It is unfair, and not realistic. Anyone who shows up to practice everyday has the determination to succeed as they will work hard at being skillful. They are fully committed to the art and in fit or the long haul. That is not in itself an easy thing to do and is praise worthy when so many people can't even be consistence in showing up for practice on a regular basis for more than 3 months.
People who bitch about Aikido not meeting not being this or that, and coming to naught, I say look at their commit, and dedication of the years of effort they put into it. Evaluate them then what they say.