I am reminded of the old saying that a sculptor, when faced with a block of stone, does not actually chisel out a statue from the stone, but, instead, just removes the excess stone to reveal the statue that was already there. Extending this analogy to Aikido, nage does not "lead" uke's attack, but, rather, as part of the whole, "chisels" out the correct approach/response based on uke's intent. Make sense? Though I gotta admit, this skill is beyond me.
In good practice.....Jim
I believe I understand the idea. There is no "them" and no "me" we are but one part of a whole. So "leading", in this way of thinking doesn't exist.
However looking back at the above analogy, a sculptor may very well see the statue inside of the block of stone. But if he never uses his chisel to remove the excess he is not a sculptor at all, only an imaginer.
If the Aikidoist never actually leads the attack, he is only a target, not a nage. We can take the perspective that there is no "leading" and in fact no "event" at all, only the wholeness of the universe, that is only one perspective. The same as the sculptor "seeing" the statute that has not been sculpted. However this sculptor must use the techniques of sculpting to make the statue appear to the rest of us, as must the nage use the techniques of Aikido to realize the event.