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Old 01-28-2011, 10:17 AM   #141
Budd's Avatar
Dojo: Taikyoku Aikido
Location: Williamsville, NY
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 927
Re: Ikeda Sensei Demos of Ki

Ooh, disagreements and a gauntlet? Accepted!!

Alfonso Adriasola wrote: View Post
Budd, a couple of disagreements. One , Ushiro is not on this thread is he? Phi is interpreting Ikeda
Is that one or two disagreements? Kidding, point taken.

Alfonso Adriasola wrote: View Post
1) Yes, but as nage, how do you push or pull or what? How much connection do you need?
So, the demo was nage to put the flat of his palm on the knuckles of the outstretched punching hand (Phi mentioned finger/finger - tried that and I can get it to work fine on a dumb force). That should be enough connection, but I can see it being really easy for nage to use local arm/shoulder inappropriately. My preferred position for practice purposes would a hybrid Greco over/under pulled out from the body-body clinch range to be more in the judo grips range - this pic of Kano and Mifune should illustrate the distance I'm talking about:

On second thought, the grips are fine, but I prefer to use a hooked hand around uke's close arm (which they mirror) and the flat hand on the neck/collarbone area to just emphasize that you ideally are letting the arms "hang" on the other person rather than trying to use them for anything more than to connect and transmit your other forces (more buzzwords - I know - I'll come back on this one). The point being is that to start to train this skill - more contact points are good. As you improve and refine, though - the idea is you can do steps 1-3 on any touch (ie. kuzushi on contact).

Alfonso Adriasola wrote: View Post
2) I know what you mean, but can you parse this? This is buzz word without explanation. What happens to the other four legged animal?
I struggle with appropriately explaining this one as well - but if we look at the "cosmology" diagram of Person bridging Heaven/Earth and translate that to being in balance such that you can direct the push of the ground up underneath you in coordination with gravity pulling down on you (probably still in buzzword territory, but this imagery has been the most useful for me as I train the inside stuffs) so that you have constant harmony between those two forces (and how they naturally join, relate, *cough* spiral - is a whole 'nother discussion). Your center/middle/hara is the "router" (metaphor, yadda) for the management of how this is happening (other buzzterms are dantien, articulated through training/conditioning can do other things, too), while your brain is the cpu.

When I make physical contact with another person (and my wife wallops me when I hug her and do this without thinking - true! Okay, fine, sometimes I do this on purpose, too *ouch*) I am able to extend the management of the up/down forces balanced inside me to the other person, such that I also manage their up/down balance through their middle via mine as I adjust the alignment of their up/down (can be overt to very subtle). How this happens (based on my caveman's grasp of science) has to do with micromuscles connecting the bones, muscles, ligaments, etc. that can be trained to react to our intent/mind-directed forces. It begins as a not-necessarily-impressive skill, but then can be conditioned over time (lots of places to go awry with this, so should be done with care and the input of someone with a clue) to be very powerful.

Alfonso Adriasola wrote: View Post
3) more buzzwords; move your center through their center? you mean take my belly button and rub it against his ( I know you know, please unpack)
Fair question - So if we accept my earlier descriptions - this part assumes that you made a successful connection by which you are now managing the natural up/down forces acting on yourself and the other person. At this point it's mentally directing your combined up/down into a break in uke's balance point (to use Phi's example, the "third leg" between and behind uke's feet). This doesn't mean they can't bring other forces to bear! Which is why it's pretty critical when you are just learning to do this against a dumb force.

But as your skill of "force management" gets more sophisticated over time and your body gets better conditioned to physically handle and deliver loads appropriately (think relaxing the upper boy, strengthening the lower body, strengthening and learning how the middle coordinates - just for starters) - this can become both powerful and subtle such that if someone tries to push me, I can reply with our combined up/downs slightly tangental to their incoming push such that they move themselves into a compromising position. Or maybe better put - I maintain harmony with the natural forces of heaven and earth and the other person defeats him or herself.

And again, this is the entry level foot in the door stuff you have to be able to do in order to get to any of the really WTF things, based on my current level of understanding.

Alfonso Adriasola wrote: View Post
thanks Phi and Budd
I hope that helped some - it's hard and tiring to both think these things through AND then figure out a way to speak them plainly to folks that don't necessarily use the same terms (or DO . . which can be another problem).

That said, I hope others find it useful and participate - agree, disagree, argue, etc. Whatever.