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Old 06-25-2003, 07:23 AM   #15
Charles Hill
Dojo: Numazu Aikikai/Aikikai Honbu Dojo
Location: Three Lakes WI/ Mishima Japan
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 837
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I have not made up my mind on this subject, but would like to comment on some of the reasons given not to change terminology from the Japanese.

One of the main answers given is to make training with people from other dojo, even other countries easier. I have trained in a few different countries and all over the U.S., but I have never found a need to actually name a technique. People teaching classes always show techniques and the people practicing do them. Any talking that goes on is going to be on details of movement, principles, or spiritual/psychological points the teacher is going to convey. This is certainly going to be done in the language the teacher is most comfortable with. There is never a need to name any techniques.

The second point made a number of times here is that using Japanese terminology is difficult and that is good. Paul even thinks it is a way of weeding out people. I remember someone asking Akira Tohei Shihan why he continues to practice Aikido even after so many years. He answered that Aikido is difficult for him and he has never been able to master it. If Aikido is so difficult for someone like him, it must be a million times more difficult for regular people like me. I'm all for making it easier.

A third point(but not really clear in my opinion) is that of tradition. About that, the point must be made that tradition is not a fundamental part of the Japanese character. Tradition is considered important in Japan, but that seems to reflect a Chinese influence. "New" is very important to the Japanese. I feel that Aikido is an extension of that. We must remember that what the Founder himself taught was radically different than what came before him. Whether people agree with him or not, there is no doubt that he was an innovator.

Again, I really don't have an answer of my own. It's just that Mr. Linden has been the only one to offer something clearly thought out. It's also his own opinion and different from the norm, all of which makes it closer to what I see as the spirit of Aikido.

Charles
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