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Old 12-28-2002, 12:47 AM   #28
PhilJ's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido Bukou
Join Date: Sep 2002
Posts: 240
Opher Donchin (opherdonchin) wrote:
I'm becoming interested in the flip side of this question. That is, can any of us point to experiences that really helped us 'learn how to learn' aikido?
Great point, Opher. I absolutely have to come out and take ukemi for you now, I'm convinced.

There are two significant situations I can think of, right off, for me: 1) times when something had profound impact, and 2) times when my frustration gave way to relaxation.

I don't have a guess at a formula for making a "profound impact", but I'd wager the formula involves relative values of the student experiencing the training. Interests, hobbies, occupations all fall there: if you strike a chord in those areas, it helps the student obtain a useful, relative perspective. I'm sure there's more.

The frustration piece is rougher and requires a patient sensei. To bring a calm realization out of frustration borne from tough technique or "inability" to grasp a concept, I think that makes a big mark in the noggin. It reminds me of a little bit of Phil-Zen, where we ask "How many different ways are there to get to our dojo?" Same question for teaching or dealing with an attack. A diligent instructor will keep trying different ways until something in the student clicks.

The student will often need great help to break past the brick wall s/he's created, but even the Great Wall could be climbed over, or altogether walked around, eh?


Phillip Johnson
Enso Aikido Dojo, Burnsville, MN
An Aikido Bukou Dojo
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