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Old 08-27-2012, 02:49 PM   #40
mathewjgano's Avatar
Dojo: Tsubaki Kannagara Jinja Aikidojo; Himeji Shodokan Dojo
Location: Renton
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 2,225
Re: talking and listening

Mark Murray wrote: View Post
How do you explain some of what Morihei Ueshiba is supposed to have said? For example, according to Admiral Takeshita's diary, Ueshiba supposedly said, "Aiki is a means of achieving harmony with another person so that you can make them do what you want." To me, if I apply that to your example, if one man used aiki, he would have the orange while the other man did not. How do you see Ueshiba's words in your example?
Mary's analogy has to do with making sure people understand each other better before proceeding into an immutable situation where both sides lose out on something. I see this relating to what you described in that, if the people had been able to find common understanding of exactly what they wanted (found better terms for their semantics), they both could have caused the other to do what they wanted (i.e. give the aspect of the orange they actually wanted).
So O Sensei may have said, "I want that orange." The Admiral might have said, "I want that orange." O Sensei might then have said, "what are your plans for the orange?" The good Admiral might then have replied, "I want to use the rind." O Sensei perhaps would have said, "cool dude! Give me the meat of the fruit when you're done, please." And they would have both got what they wanted through the act of blending their actions to suit their respective goals.
The problem of course comes when people want the same thing but are unwilling to share, or when only one of those people is unwilling to share and exerts their will. Unless the one exerting their will can convince the other to go along with it, there will be conflict, even if only in terms of intent alone...which has a funny habit of lasting, even through multiple generations.
In my personal experience, which mostly smells of roses I must admit, acts of selfless magnamity tend to inspire a similar response. Acts which appear to serve some ulterior purpose do not, and tend to in turn cause behavior which is somewhat more self-serving. The "trick" is how to display authenticity when trying to be magnanimous. Because of this, to get the other person to do what I want, I usually try to do what they want first. I rarely ask anything of anyone because I find it makes people more likely to help me in the long run. This kind of behavior has its own pit-falls, but it is a kind of non-verbal communication which people tend to listen to better than any argument I might be able to present.
...So it seems to me, at any rate.
We can probably extrapolate this analogy to any number of other circumstances to suit any number of ethical dilemmas (or responses), but that's the problem/beauty with hypotheticals: they're a veritable playground for the "what-if" part of the mind.
Ultimately it takes a great effort on the part of the "talker" and the "listener" and I think suspending our beliefs, which arise quite naturally throughout any conversation, is usually key to arriving at an understanding and then moving on to reconcilliation of what might appear to be opposing intentions.

Last edited by mathewjgano : 08-27-2012 at 02:52 PM.

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