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Old 07-31-2013, 07:47 AM   #21
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Re: What is Aiki? Introduction to a method of analyzing Aiki. (Part 3)

Oisin Bourke wrote: View Post
Thanks for that.


Takahashi seems to emphasise the retraining of one's body/reflexes/nervous system so that you don't give the grasping opponent anything to work with. So you have this paradox, of keeping your intent throughout the body while not issuing any aggression (ie tension that the other can work with). He calls this "the containment of power" and explains that one should start exploring this paradox through "the internal senses contained within the wrist". So you need to "send intent" to the hands while at the same time neutralising the grab. To me, this seems to be an exercise for training the nervous system.
So that can align sorta with the classics notion of balancing the powers of Heaven/Man/Earth (in/yo/ho, balancing the qi/ki, etc.) - initially with regard to managing the ground pushing you up and gravity pulling you down into a neutral state where an opponent cannot feel your intention yet you can make their power/intent part of the overall chain you manage (again, I'm keeping it simplified and generalizing, but then in fairness, the article was only mentioning a little bit, too).

The nervous system training is an interesting vocabulary for what's going on - training the nervous system how? To relax completely, keep weight underside and focus on one point a la Tohei (though neither one completely gets at the heart with generalities, if you can bridge what Takahashi is hinting at in the articles with Tohei's more famous three maxims, the noose starts to tighten further around a better definition of how jin works, as opposed to what it is IMO)? As I mentioned before, I see a progression that often gets left out of 1) How to train the skill 2) How to condition the skill 3) How to apply the skill (assuming there are set desirable parameters for the skill). There may very well be some sophisticated and organized methods for this that are preserved explicitly, but mostly I see some vague hints by historical and modern parties proclaiming that they or their teachers have/had the keys to the kingdom and the rest of us can guess at what they meant vs. what they knew.

So that being said, I don't disagree with the nervous system description (as a piece of the puzzle) - but how would you say it's being trained and towards what desirable outcome (to specifically enable the abilities of neutralizing external force while being able to send intent as tangible activity)?
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