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Old 11-05-2012, 12:43 PM   #32
morph4me's Avatar
Location: NY
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 54
Re: Defining the word "Aiki" and looking at the phenomenon it describes.

Chris Hein wrote: View Post
Hey Tom,
Thanks for the concise, and thoughtful reply.

So you started with "C" here, and moved on to say how that makes "D". I got where you're going. However, to me, "C" (and maybe we just need a better definition of the phenomenon of "C") sounds like it is describing a kind of physical powerfulness. If we compared you to a child for example, you are much much more powerful then the child, to him you would seem unmovable and strangely powerful (Definition "C"). However your power over the child doesn't give you definition "D" "automatically able to adapt to movements and changes made by the child (ever had a kid surprise you with a hit to the face? HA). It also doesn't make the child feel strangely weak, he just can simply tell the you are more power then he is. Like if you arm wrestled one of the competitors from the "worlds strongest man", he would probably easily beat you, but you wouldn't feel strange, or weaker then normal. Definition "D" has a quality about it that requires a strangeness or otherworldly quality. Definition "C" seems to simply show great physical power.

There is a problem here where we get into if one person were more skilled. That would eliminate definition "A" all together, because they are equally skilled. An example of this that I saw from Josh Reyder ( he was saying that in Yagyu Shinkage-ryu when the word Aiki is used, they are talking about "Departing the Aiki" in a situation where both opponents were in a unity of "attack and defense".

Having the ability described by "B" seems to be a different type of phenomenon to me then a physical skill, or body ability.

I definitely agree with you here! The thing I'm trying to avoid/find our way through, is something like one of the blind men yelling "I can feel that the elephant is pink" and all the other blind men agreeing.

I should have read a little more carefully before responding. I think that there is a component missing form the C definintion. In my mind C should read.

C) A body ability, that once acquired gives it's practitioner great physical power and sensitivity, making them seem unmovable and strangely forceful.

Which would make aiki a hybrid of C & D. The great physical power would be like the power of the ocean, always present but different depending on circumstances or conditions.

I also read A and B and being mutually exclusive, if A describes two people of equal skill, able to discern no openings anddemonstrating the ability to understand, blend with,each other, leading to a standoff and precludes either of them from being able to manipulate the mind/intention of another person.

I think that if you could find a way to blend all of your definitions into one all inclusive one, that would probably be the closest definition of aiki as I understand it.

"Logical consequences are the scarecrows of fools and the beacons of wise men" - Thomas Henry Huxley
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