Thread: Ki Eureka
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Old 01-07-2011, 01:24 PM   #17
Lee Salzman
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 406
Re: Ki Eureka

Mike Sigman wrote: View Post
Well, and I've said this before, there's already a very consistent terminology about these skills. What's happened in the West is that there's still some idea that someone can make up their own particular take on these skills and legitimately apply the terminology to that take. I disagree with the approach in the same way that I disagree that someone can "do their own thang" and legitimately call it "Aikido" or "Taijiquan" or "Yiquan", or whatever, because the implication then becomes that the terms have no fixed meaning and worst of all, there is no incorrect way to do things. Of course there's an incorrect way to do things. Look how much time Ueshiba spent parroting the classical literature, in part as an indicator that he understood the correct way to do things (notice his use of the 4 Poles or Eight Gates, as an example).
The terminology is peanuts, though. Why begrudge someone for explaining an idea as they truly understand it? What seems more important is the ability to get someone else to do it. If someone is not getting something, should we feel bound by standardized methods of passing on information and practicing, placing all the burden on the student to make them work, or is it not better to continually reframe the issue until it does manage to convey the subjective experience of an idea (which may defy any and all terminology), if our goal is in fact to pass on ability?

I don't know for sure about "feeling" as a criterion for the simple reason that most people are neophytes and can't really differentiate between, for example, a large dollop of power done one way to them and a large dollop of power done a very different way to them. Right? But that being said, yes there should be demonstrable and 'feelable" results, *plus* there should be a statable logic that makes sense in terms of physics/physiology. If it was just opinions, it would be a waste of time.
To clarify, I don't mean the student feeling something done to him, I mean the student feeling himself doing the thing, the subjective experience of the action itself.

It sounds like you are talking about basic jin things. Good. Keep practicing. Do you see the logic of the fact that it takes a long time to acquire even that skill to the point where it is automatic and that if you jumped too quickly into applications, competition, etc., you really wouldn't have had sufficient time to imbue those skills so you'd be in effect practicing two different forms of movement? Ueshiba was doing the traditional thing by forbidding too-early competition, as you should easily see.
In my own practice, there is a time and place for discovering abilities, a place for refining them, and a place for verifying/testing them in reality. First I need to feel what it feels like inside me, then I need to work on reproducing that on a reliable basis and strengthening it, then I need to find contexts where that ability breaks down to feed back into the discovery and refinement processes. I think so long as that progression is clear in my head, competition/verification in reality is extremely valuable to me, but not by itself a thing that fulfills all parts of that progression.

But if I just jumped to the end part of that progression without having anything in mind I wanted to verify, it does me no real good, true (as empirically determined by many years of floundering). But at the same time, if I don't test what I am building regularly, I may be building nothing or even worse, something that I don't want or didn't Intend (also as empirically determined by years of floundering ).
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