Last Chance - Osensei: IHTBF
I am collecting information for a core column entitled Osensei: It Had to Be Felt. One part of this is as follows: There are still a few individuals alive who took ukemi from Ueshiba Morihei. I can think of the following individuals: Tada, Suganuma, Kobayashi, Chiba, Yamada, Saotome, Anno, Isoyama, Inagaki, Shimizu, Watanabe, Masuda, Henry Kono, Bob Nadeau, Inoue (formerly of Yoshinkan), some of the old shihan of Hawaii. There are surely others.
What I am requesting is that people interview these people, with a specific goal in mind (Tada sensei has been so interviewed, and Isoyama sensei is, I believe, pending). To get a fine-grained description of the actual experience. After you've gotten this description, go deeper. What happened within your body? What do you think/believe he was doing.
I believe it would be ideal if the interviewer had some experience of the work of someone like Akuzawa Minoru, Mike Sigman, Dan Harden, Toby Threadgill, or a high level Chinese martial arts instructor. I'm not saying that the people on this list have the same training regimen, the same ideas, etc. (That's a discussion I truly don't want to revisit). Rather, your experience of one type of internal training/aiki can serve as a benchmark so that YOUR questions are not vague and impressionistic. I am asking for an engineer's approach rather than a romanticist.
Please send the result of such interviews to me, either through the message function here or directly through email.
I hope to thereby establish a data base of experience, before these people are gone and all we have left is fantasy and assumptions.