Like Phi I am also not worthy of posting in VOE having been too lazy to register formally (shame on me)...
However an interesting topic so I'll throw something I have lying around on to the heap for those that like this sort of thing....
Tamura Sensei wrote about Kokyu-Ryoku
Tamura Sensei wrote:
"You can practice Aikido if you can lift three ounces of bran."
This indicates that Aikido is not an art of combat based on the use of physical and muscular force, of one body against another.
The execution of a technique of Aikido is achieved by using mental energy and physical force naturally. If you can use this method it is possible to develop a strength superior to any which you believe you may have. When we say that old people, women and children can practice, this not only means that they can learn but that they can actually apply this way of combat once they have fully understood it.
I have touched upon Kokyu earlier. We now pass on to the stage of physiological respiration by which we can absorb within ourselves the energy of the Universe. We can go further still and say that we become part of the one body of the Universe. The energy which flows form this is ours without being ours. It is, in reality, the energy of the Universe that surges from our bodies. This force, concentrated in the Seika Tanden and filling all parts of our body, is like water that gushes forth and never stops. This energy which emanates from the body and mind which is always calm, serene and relaxed, which can respond at any time and in any direction required, is called Kokyu Ryoku.
This energy, which is a gift from Heaven, cannot be expressed if your neck, your shoulders or your arms are unnecessarily tense or if you imagine yourself strong or weak or if you believe that this force does not exist. All this rubbish, all these impurities are all barriers to the passage of Ki. It is like a hose pipe which is constricted by same one treading on it or if it is blocked and from which water cannot flow.
O Sensei often repeats:
"Aikido is a purification of the body and soul and it is to clean out the body and soul."
It is obvious that if this exteror and interior cleaning is carried out, the soul will be radiant, the circulation of the blood will improve and so will the mind and body.
Kokyu Ryoku is brought to life in the practice of Aikido by a simple gesture such as raising an arm or advancing a foot. An Aikido technique executed without employing Kokyu Ryoku is not an Aikido technique. It is champagne without the bubbles or flat beer.
Kokyu Ryoku learned intellectually is useless. It is necessary to learn it physically in daily exercise. it is only assimilated by contained accumulation.
O Sensei says on this subject:
"Three days work is not only three day work; a years work is not only a years work. Ten years work stores up the energy of ten years."
Without Kokyu Ryoku, the form of a technique can exist but it is an empty form.
It is impossible to impregnate yourself without practicing the techniques. Whatever happens, the result will be different according to whether you believe this or not."
My thoughts on this subject...
For starters it endorses much of what Iwamaki has posted.
The talk of energy in all directions matches exactly what I'm training with Dan Harden...6 directions.
Empty techniques - Perhaps this it the much criticised 'Modern Aikido"
What I don't agree with is this bit....
It is important to understand that consciously trying to get KOKYU RYOKU or KI will not produce the desired results, but only frustration. It is therefore best to enjoy training every day, and not think about things that will come by themselves when the time is right. Aikido training, among its many other benefits including self-defense, self-improvement, physical fitness, camaraderie, etc., is fun. After all, where else can you twist peoples' wrists and throw them down hard every day and not get arrested or sued?.
Further...Tamura's words aren't exactly helpful to me and ~I'm sure many others. So don't think I'm popping at Iwamaki...far from it. Although Tamara Sensei did point to daily exercise....but what exercise?
So ....I think there is a better way other than just training for a long time and hoping for results to come. This is what the IP/IS crowd are saying. My thoughts are that I agree with them...or am I now 'one of them' despite my fledgeling skills?. For me specific training of the body and breathing to create an Aiki body that can then be deployed through Aiki waza that will have champagne bubbles is the way forward - a real objective and not a hope that I'll be the lucky first one that replicates O'Sensei skills by just training in hope.