Neil Mick wrote:
Every time a sensei mentions "peace," my brain goes off into a whole range of questions. If the goal of Aikidoists is to foster harmony, then what is their role when the disharmony is spawned from us?
Well, then we must define 'harmony.' And we must, in the context of aikido, define it form the point of view of a man who was raised in turn of the (20th) century Japan and grew up in the pre-WWII era and one who learned his budo from (and was in his own time) a scrapper, street fighter, hell-raiser and butt-kicker. And we have to factor in his spiritual turn of mind in his later years and his changing, evolving beliefs and view it all through a lens that allows us to span a half-century or more all at once, including the feisty young roustabout and the contemplative old man. Then we MIGHT be able to get a handle on what he meant and what he taught.
Until then, we must rely on the interpretations of his students and their students.
One definition of harmony that I, personally, feel is most appropriate to budo -- If a nail sticks up, hammer it down. That's a classically Japanese definition of harmony, BTW.
Now, we can get on with defining 'peace' ...