Re: Just how real is violence? And where does Aikido stands in all of this?
At this time in my life and training, I believe violence is borne out of desperation. Many of those living in first world countries no longer have to experience the desperation that comes with threats to their means of survival (air, water, food, shelter). In the first world, air may be dirty in some places, but it is surely plentiful. Water still appears by turning a faucet. Food is plentiful and available on every street corner. And for most of us, shelter is easily attained -- even if it is through a shelter. When the needs for survival are met, the reasons for real violence are dramatically reduced. I believe humans naturally avoid violence when it is an option, and one of the first world's primary offerings is options. But all it would take to elevate the level of desperation in the first world is the elimination of a few options. Perhaps a natural disaster like a hurricane or earthquake, or a massive food shortage, or even a prolonged power outage. I believe every human being is capable of anything when put in the right circumstances. I train for my own benefit, but also for the unexpected.