Thread: One True Way
View Single Post
Old 01-27-2012, 11:00 AM   #7
R.A. Robertson
Dojo: Still Point Aikido Center
Location: Austin, TX, USA
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 345
Re: One True Way

Jonathan Hay wrote: View Post
It's surprising how much you know about this "One True Way" which you say hasn't yet been found. If it is yet to be discovered, how is it you are able to describe it in such detail? You seem to want on one hand to define what it is and on the other proclaim it a mystery; to make proclamations about it but avoid responsibility for your proclamations by equivocation. I don't see the point of doing this...

Let me see if I can be less equivocal.

On the one hand, I do want to define what it is. I do want to know it within the bounds of what is knowable.

On the other hand, I do want to affirm that it retains a quality of mystery, even with greater knowing.

I'm a great fan of the scientific method, which at its best, is able to produce increasingly better models for reality. At the same time, good science acknowledges that the best it can do is produce models accessible to humans (at least, some humans) which may or may not accurately reflect ultimate truth or reality.

I do know a great deal about aikido. If you want me to speak more precisely, I would rather say I do know a great deal about my experience of aikido. I know enough to be confident that I have insights that can be valuable to some but not all humans. If I'm to share what I know with any authenticity, then it has to be from that arena over which I have actual authority.

At the same time, what I don't know about aikido is infinitely more than what I do know. I know very little of your experience of aikido, and can only learn if I'm willing to accept that there is much that I do not know.

If I wish to be in a position to help others, I have to not shirk the responsibility of my experience. If I wish to be in a position for others to help me, I have to remain humble about the limits of my knowledge.

For me, there is no contradiction. It is a simple matter of practicality.

Hope that helps.
  Reply With Quote