View Single Post
Old 03-22-2013, 02:59 PM   #39
Janet Rosen
  AikiWeb Forums Contributing Member
Janet Rosen's Avatar
Location: Left Coast
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 4,342
Re: Aikido Predator Mindset

David Kelliher wrote: View Post
I find it interesting that a solid number of people seem to find the term predator and judge it as a negative. Is a lion evil-not-good-worthy-of-judgement for hunting gazelles, wolves stalking deer, sharks eating seals etc. etc. In my mind, being a predator and having a predator's mindset who hunts to maintain his own life is very different from a murderer or one with a murderous intent.

Recently, I was on the sidewalk about 10 feet in front of my apartment around 11 PM on a Sunday night, when I noticed 2 guys walking down the street towards me. I took note of them and continued smoking my cigarette (have since quit - again). When they were within about 20 feet of my the smaller of the 2 dudes (5'9 average sized guy) moves into the street and starts circling to my front asking non-sense questions while his large (I'm not a small guy and this dude looked like all he's done for 35 years was swing a sledgehammer) friend hugged the inside of the sidewalk and started to circle toward my back. As he did this, I circled keeping the smaller guy in between me and big guy and kept telling them the liquor store was closed (they didn't seem/act drunk and frankly appeared to be just trying to distract me) and this whole time the big guys keeps trying to get behind me and I just kept circling, kept myself ready for anything, but didn't back down. Eventually, there came a sort of moment of truth where they had to decide if they wanted to try to jump a fully aware person without the cheap shot/bear hug from behind they had planned and they ended up walking away.

I would say this was due to what could be called a predator's mindset(warrior's intent I called it shortly after the incident). There was sort of a "I see you" moment where they saw that I wasn't prey I had claws, teeth, fangs and fist and while they might ultimately win it wasn't worth it and moved along. To me, this is in the spirit of Aikido - I don't recall who said it or where, but I believe there's a saying with regard to Aikido where you can defeat your opponent with a glance. Which in a way sort of happened, if I had been meek, defensive, and prey-like there's no doubt in my mind they would have jumped me and either they or I or more likely both, would have come out worse for wear.
Great action and example. And I've done this type of thing many times in the decades before I came to aikido (New Yorker). But I don't equate RECOGNIZING predators and using body language to deter them with BEING or CHANNELING the spirit of a predator. Two different things.

Janet Rosen
"peace will enter when hate is gone"--percy mayfield
  Reply With Quote