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Old 05-28-2012, 10:12 AM   #65
graham christian
Dojo: golden center aikido-highgate
Location: london
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,697
Re: Spiritual and i/p

Hugh Beyer wrote: View Post
Just to turn up the heat on this judging/no judging point:

The specific claim has been made that O-Sensei quoted classic concepts from Chinese martial arts extensively.

This claim is either true or false, isn't it? Is there any room here for how "I feel" about the matter?

If the claim is true, surely it has implications about the art we practice. Either it's based on principles which go all the way back to the Chinese or it's not. Is there any room for "what I want" in the question?

If Aikido is based on these core principles, hadn't we better understand them if we want to understand the Founder's art? Is there any "my way" here? Either you're trying to learn what the Founder had to teach or you're not--and if you're not, bless you and go in peace, but you're not really in this conversation.

Okay, so we have this specific claim, supported by the specific translations and commentary done by Chris Li, by quotes and sayings recorded by Stan Pranin, explained and discussed by Ellis Amdur, laid out in exhaustive detail by Prof. Goldsbury, with links back to various classic Chinese manuals.

Have you reviewed this material? Have you formed an informed opinion on it? Can you disprove the argument that Chinese principles drove O-Sensei's Aikido? I'm betting that the people who have really looked at it in depth are the people who have bought in... but I'm more than happy to be proven wrong. Show where the argument falls down. Do your homework. Because the people making the argument have.

And if you don't want to... if you want to say, "Yeah, whatever, but that doesn't have anything to do with MY Aikido," good enough, that's your right--but don't then go on to tell me you understand O-Sensei better than I do, or that you can do the specific demonstrations of skill he did, or that your art is devastatingly effective. Because then I'll say, "Show me" and we'll be right back where we started.
I have read some. I have seen the opinions formed by those who find these little gems. I am not impressed by 1) The idea that it is all embracing extensive research for virtually all spiritual things he said are either discounted or seen as something else personal to him or more importantly thoroughly misunderstood. 2) Of course all martial arts from the east can be traced back to various sources from various countries, at least parts of them can. That doesn't equal therefor that is what is being done in said new time. It means that was one influence along with many others.

The claim that he quoted classic concepts from chinese martial arts all the time is obviously false.

He may have quoted some. I quote some too. Twisting it in that way strikes me as trying to fit some agenda.

I have many quotes of Ueshibas nothing to do with classic chinese martial arts and when it comes to repeatedly then the only thing he repeatedly referred to was shinto. The next most repeated was spiritual.

I could dig up poems or whatever from past masters or writers which I find congruent to what I am teaching and even put them on a dojo wall. That's normal isn't it? How people can say that means x,y, z, baffles me.

I'm afraid for me spiritual concepts and truths are the basis of all harmonious martial arts so without understanding them you cannot understand the person concerned. All spiritual truths fit with the principles he talked about repeatedly for they are all non-resistive and real. They all manifest in the various forms shapes and motions. To understand fully one must look hollistically. Truth is not chinese.