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Old 11-24-2011, 01:15 AM   #73
Lee Salzman
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 399
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Re: A Primer on Aikido, Aiki and IS

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David Soroko wrote: View Post
This is interesting. Are you saying that due to some evolutionary pressure the use of is/ip fell into disrepair? What would this pressure be? Also this implies that some earlier ancestor of ours did have is/ip. Is that your position?
No, I am saying it never actually existed as an inborn trait. Humans are not born knowing how to read. But with lots of training and learning from their parents, they can. And only after that, in which you had societies stable enough to pass on reading, could you legitimately say that being a better reader could function as a selective pressure. Even then, that is comparatively modern. Go back a couple hundred years. What were literacy rates like then? What was the state of literacy like throughout most of the timeline of the modern human species (wikipedia claims anatomically modern human is 200,000 years old, and behaviorially modern is 50,000)? Reading is pretty new as a widespread phenomenon. Compare to IS, which has much less reason to spread than reading.

The human mind and body are very powerful, but for reasons totally unrelated to IS, or at best the precursors of IS. If you take the flexibility rolled into the system to do many things, and you instead apply it to one purpose that necessitates all of that functionality, you get something way more than the sum of its parts, like the ability to read books.

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Actually as presented it is quite different. If I want to become stronger I can devise some half baked training scheme and if I follow it I will become stronger. Not as strong as I could be with professional coaching and not as strong as top athletes, but stronger. Same for sprinting and other activities you mentioned. With is/ip as described here we have something qualitatively different. It is not more of the same, it is counterintuitive and it can not be acquired without a teacher (or can but with vanishingly small probability). If I am misrepresenting the is/ip case, please correct me.
The likelihood you will encounter certain feelings on your own at such a magnitude that you will recognize them as significant is vanishingly small without a huge amount of experimentation in the actual domain which could take a lifetime, several lifetimes, to accumulate. A teacher can painstakingly get you to feel just a bit of it, and give you positive motivation to continue further even when that little taste he allowed you to feel would otherwise not feel very motivating to you. Especially when other alternatives may feel immediately more productive, but have way lower potentials in terms of ultimate utility. We stand on the shoulders of giants.

Example: when you throw a punch, it may feel like you get more of your body mass into it by throwing your hip forward with your torso to get your torso moving like a giant swiveling door. Indeed, this is an actual improvement over just flopping the arm out at your target, because there is a bigger mass accelerating. But now your torso is unstable, and your arm is, by virtue of being upon it, unstable, and has comparatively little power to if you learned how to strike without bleeding there, with, well, jin, if you wanna call it that. But since the torso swivel is a relatively easy thing to to learn by comparison, you see pushing the hips through everywhere.

Likewise, winding up for a punch may feel like it makes your punching immediately stronger, because you now have a longer time to accelerate your fist. People instinctively do this. But, it now takes you much longer to prepare to strike, so people see you coming from a mile away, but also there are a lot of other factors that can still make the end result weak even when it lands, like the above. But with, practice, you can learn to increase the power of your striking in ways that take quite a long way to learn, but eliminate the need to rely on windup to actually accelerate.

Those two issues are a matter of bodily harmony and how it applies to punching. You will not get your entire body to act in harmony on your own very quickly, no more than you will independently discover quantum physics on your own, without lots of painstaking research that may be too much for just your lifetime, having never learned anything about physics. Some things are very hard to see even when they're staring you in the face.

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How do you define modern? Since the industrial revolution? Do you believe that before "modern" times humans could tap into is/ip directly without a need to retrain themselves? How about those tribes in the Amazon basin (probably don't exist any more but just for illustration), are they (were they) in a ip/is state of grace?
I refer to the accumulation of maladaptive habits by Homo Sapiens Officus Workerus. I am a programmer, I spend a lot of time sitting down, only using part of my body outside of exercise or other times I'm allowed to pry myself away from the computer. If there were ever a chance to learn IS spontaneously, it would not be at the keyboard, verily. A miner or agricultural worker or samurai probably has a better chance at independently discovering IS than me.

Last edited by Lee Salzman : 11-24-2011 at 01:29 AM.
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