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Old 09-10-2002, 07:29 PM   #46
Neil Mick
Dojo: Aikido of Santa Cruz
Location: Santa Cruz, CA
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 225
Re: Harmony?

Chuck Gordon (LOEP) wrote:
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' ...

No, we mustn't. YOU should.

Since everyone trains for different reasons, it is up to the individual to define how to effect harmony in your life, as an Aikidoist.

If you train solely for the physical exercise, you are no worse an Aikidoist than a practictioner of Omotokyo and Kotodama.

That's the beauty of this art: there's no pressure to think that there's only one Way. And this is what makes the Art a living Art, rather than a dry re-enactment of a great man's life.

O Sensei's father's last words to his son: Do what you will; go where your spirit guides (paraphrased).

But to invert the question: what if doing nothing and and nonaction causes disharmony? What is our role in stopping the violence? The answer is different for everyone.

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