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Old 06-13-2012, 02:29 PM   #30
graham christian
Dojo: golden center aikido-highgate
Location: london
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,697
Re: My Spiritual Aikido.

Gary Welborn wrote: View Post
Thanks for sharing. The first partial quote from the original entry and the second partial from a later entry seems to me to open space to ask a question about the how of the body. Putting aside the order of things, i.e. Spirit, Mind, do you work the body to allow it of be an effect part of the whole when doing nikkyo? How do you train (drills, etc.) to have the body work in doing nikkyo using your Koshi approach? Is it different training for the Kokyu approach? For me doing nikkyo is a body closing activity on my part and I am trying to effect the other persons feet. I want them light on their feet . With uke my intent goes through the their elbow, through the lower back and through the leg to the ground, breaking the connection, My hold on the uke's wrist and such is like a hug that can't be broken, their is a weight drop, a weight shift, I keep my center/dantien pressurized and I close...a feeling to my light drawing in rather than expanding.

For all of these elements there are drills, some of them solo drills. A whole bunch of folks provide these kinds of practices to help with the whole. what kinds of practices or drills do you use for your body practice?


Nikkyo: Firstly I show various ways of doing the same Nikkyo. So it's best I separate them.

Nikkyo from center: This nikkyo is done by extending Ki out of the finger (usually index finger for beginners) and around the wrist and back to own center. Principle of circle or even a 'u' shape. The emphasis is reaching out from center, around and back to own center. So it's not so much a body drill except for the how of the technique, the technical corrections of elbows and shoulders and position etc. It's exercising center.

Nikkyo from center line: This is nikkyo with tegatana. Extending through the center line of the other, cutting through their center line, done. It's a sword cut. It involves lifting the sword and cutting the sword. Once again it exercises center and center line. Whatever happens body wise 'internally' is the result of these two things.

Nikkyo form kokyu is done with a flat hand, fingers spread, wrist soft, extended Ki, like a fan. This is a space exercise so you are exercizing your space. Center line and center are there too of course but emphasis space. With each the principles are different.

For instance with the first the principle of invite, with the second the principle of neutral, with the third the principle welcome.

So the body being the effect part of anything is based on all drills where you are to learn to be happy effect. You learn in all drills to receive comfortably. So it's not really a matter of which part of the body it's more a matter of which principle you use which in turn allows the body to receive comfortably.

Center for example accepts and gives and that is for me a basic Aikido meditation and something which should be more and more there all the time like breathing, energy is continuously going in and extending out. Any force given thus goes into center so the body remains energetic and relaxed. Any tension goes into center, etc. Thus energy in the body, especially the lower half is doing what it should naturally. Develop center line and the upper part of the body internally goes into alignment energy wise.

For me Nikkyo wise on the wrist for example I am not interested in the other persons feet or whatever physically. What I would call the standard would be the sword, or tegatana nikkyo. Therefor I am only interested in aligning my center line with theirs, aware of their energy and mind movement showing them the 'blade'. Any thought of moving or energy change I cut through their center line, done. What they do internally, externally, of no importance. I am concentrated and aware only of my center line and center and space, as well as theirs.

The body drills which fit such would actually be those like ikkyo exercise done from those principles. Four direction ikkyo, eight direction ikkyo, Picking up tegatana for nikkyo should feel no different than doing ikkyo in essence.

Koshi I do drills where they must feel the gravity and more importantly an empty space below them, a space that has infinite capacity, can take everything into it. Sometimes as if it's a big bowl below ground that if you connect to takes everything into it. This relates to the base of the lower spine relaxing, opening. So nikkyo done from such I am actually connecting our koshi's.

I do not 'break' connection, I connect. I do not say connect to their center and disrupt it. I say connect to their center and then anything you are truly doing from center will cause motion for you are together. Thus I have drills of connecting with center, connecting your space with their space, connecting your koshi with their koshi, connecting you with them. Prime directive is 'to be with'.

To be with and you can feel they may be doing all kinds of strange things with their minds and energy and internal movements but all subservient to being with and being at one. Then and only then what you do they follow.

The exercises of closing and opening, condensing, expanding I don't do as such for I say both should be happening at the same time, yin and yang. Thus we never 'pull Ki in' or tense 'constrict Ki' We allow. We allow expansion and allow condensing, Ki out or ki flowing from out to in. The principle is that as you flow. extend out then Ki automatically according to the laws of yin and yang flows in. So there is no need to tense or constrict. Allow the principles to do their jobs is the key.

All Aikitaiso and indeed all techniques can be done from center. They can be done from koshi. They can be done from kokyu. Thus the body exercises done from said facets produces different internal effects and different external effects on the other person. So we don't concentrate on the internal body parts or energy paths but rather the principles and the resultant effects internally or externally. So for me it's universal.

Any more thoughts on the matter I shall put into a different post.


Last edited by graham christian : 06-13-2012 at 02:35 PM.