Re: Morihei Ueshiba's Use of the Term "Aiki"
To add a bit of fodder to this discussion regarding Morihei Ueshiba's use of the term "aiki"...
Last night, I had some time so I went and translated the first couple of passages that mentioned "aiki' that I found in "Takemusu Aiki," a collection of transcripts of lectures by Morihei Ueshiba by Hideo Takahashi. I believe these passages were first published in 1958 in publications put out by the Byakko Shinkokai. The bulk of the original text of "Takemusu Aiki" is, for my uneducated mind, pretty difficult to get through due to its many esoteric references to texts outside of my own knowledge like the Kojiki, metaphoric/philosophic/religious terms from the Ōmotokyō religion, and kotodama. The below translations are mine, so any mistakes therein are also mine.
(Peter Goldsbury pointed out to me that there are also translations of "Takemusu Aiki" done by Sonoko Tanaka on the Aikido Journal member's site, for those seeking an alternative translation.)
「今や、我々は与えられたる神業を失墜せんように、慈となり、光となって、神のみ子たるところの身の本分をつくし、宇宙建国完成、人の完成の業に奉仕し、顕幽神三界にわた り、世々をあげて和合し、経綸を進むるは、我々の完成の道であり、それは合気の実行であります。」(pg 31)
"At present, in order for us to not lose the divine work that was given to us, we must fulfill our duties as children of god by becoming kindness and by becoming light; we must enter into the service of working towards a universal nation and the completion of mankind, to cross over into the three worlds of the senses, the spirit, and the divine; and, our harmonizing with the entirety of the worlds and advancing the order of the state (country) is the path for our completion. This is the realization of aiki."
"The path of aiki is the path to protect love. Without love, this world does not hold up at all. Therefore, without the work of the truth of aiki, I believe that this world will collapse.
In order to do this, we must cross over into the three worlds of the senses, the spirit, and the divine in order to keep protecting this world. This will be the manifestation of the goddess of mercy (Sahasrabhuja arya avalokitesvara).
Aiki is to stand at the center of the universe and is one path of conduct that has the responsibility of righting the drifting world."