Re: O Sensei observation
Ken: Have you understood yet that I'm not attacking you? I'm not using my "association with the ASU" to say anything about you, good or bad. I've made no claims about you or your practice at all, and if you're reading my posts that way, you're misreading them. I'm using your posts as an opportunity to meditate on my practice and what it suggests about the relationship between the IP/IS work and traditional Aikido, in the hopes that this might be useful to someone--possibly even you. In the above post, I was celebrating my discovery of the stream of Aikido shared by Gleason and Saotome, and sourced back to Yamaguchi. You didn't enter into it except in a "Huh. This is odd" kind of way.
Here's an attack if you want one: You can't possibly be as incompetent as your posts suggest. No dan grade in the ASU can possibly believe O-Sensei's free hand is "dangling" in any of his techniques. No one can seriously believe the remarks you call attacks were intended as such. I've found dan grades in the ASU to be strong, soft, centered, and connected. I'd be very surprised if you were the exception.
So quit fighting with me, okay? I'd be perfectly happy to discuss timing, blending, and positioning with you if you'd just put your dukes down.
George Sensei: Thanks for your thoughtful post. Your reflections on how Saotome has addressed these concepts is very helpful.
I agree with everything you said about the spiritual aspect of the large movements. It's my belief also that O-Sensei simply didn't separate the martial and spiritual streams of his thought.
But I'd argue that in the same way, the large movements practice both aspects. When I do a big, open movement to receive an attack, I'm practicing an attitude of mind towards conflict, and ultimately towards my interaction with the world. But I'm also (these days) practicing the IS concept of "opening" the body, using that motion within myself to unbalance uke. And that's the same motion I'd be using in a smaller or static situation. So I don't see any conflict either on the martial or on the spiritual side.