Hugh, I dont agree with your definitions. I have met Gleason sensei and taken ukemi for him. He never said anything about silk reeling being what he does. I did not see any silk reeling movement from him. He did talk about aiki and izanami and izanagi, and asagao and aiki age and aiki sage; a lot.
I never heard him say Peng or Peng Jin, and he did not talk about 6 direction training either. I could clearly feel he used Jin ( what I call AIki) ; he was very able to do Aikido with it; and he and Ikeda sensei feel really really similar. It seems like technical terms from different chinese arts (yiquan, taijiquan) are being used to talk about related matters but not in the way people in those arts use them.
What I see here described as 6 directions sounds a lot like 'keep one point'.
I think it's cool that you've trained with my teacher. Are you part of the group out there that has him come do seminars every year?
And you're not wrong, actually. I don't attempt to speak for my teacher, and I don't claim that whatever I say is what he says. Much of what I wrote above is not from him only; it's my synthesis from several places. I don't think he'd disagree, but it's not my place to say.
To take your points in order--differentiate pulling silk from reeling silk. Pulling silk is Chinese terminology for 6-directions, so far as I can tell. Reeling silk is pulling silk in movement. In practice this generally turns into spirals because that's the best way for a human body to manifest in/yo everywhere. But there's a lot more subtlety there, and a number of different models for how to move the body, so once you start moving there's no simple equivalence in the different terminology.
I also wouldn't attempt to assign "jin" to any simple Japanese or Aikido concept. The Chinese are systematizers in a way the Japanese are not, and there's a million different types of jin. Peng jin comes pretty close to 6-directions and chan si jin is close to spiraling, but I don't know enough to about the Chinese models to say if it's an exact match. I'm quite sure Sensei showed you spiraling.
As to your last point, yes, I think this all is very much what Tohei was getting at with "keep one point." But how? What does that mean? How do you work on it? Turns out there is a history and methodology around that.
It just came to mind when you wrote: In my understanding, this circle of opposing powers is exactly opening in 6 directions, which is silk reeling. So, according to the founder, this skill is at the core of aikido. And it's the basis for creating in/yo, dual opposing spirals, putting Iganami in the left hand and Inazami in the right, and standing on the floating bridge of Heaven, all of which he also said were the basis for Aikido, but go read Chris' blog to find out how.
Maybe I'm just reading it the wrong way.
(Internal) spiral power certainly is part of the core of Ueshiba's aikido; the 6 Harmonies, as I understand them, involves the mechanics of that process, while "6 directions" is more or less our (we folks on the "aiki bus") shorthand for working the In/Yo process of building structure and laying the fundamental groundwork for making IP 'n' aiki.
Crap. I wrote "...which is silk reeling" when I meant pulling
silk. My bad. It's all the fault of the Chinese for confusing terminology. My apologies. Pulling silk corresponds to 6-directions which is balancing forces within yourself.
Once you have another person involved, then you have in/yo at the point of contact set into motion by spirals throughout the frame, which was what O-Sensei was talking about when he talks about Izanagi and Izanami. I think that's the same as reeling
silk but I don't have the background to say.
So I think, once you understand that I was really talking about two separate layers of skill and once I fix my typo for pulling rather than reeling silk, that we're pretty much in agreement.