Brad Medling (ikkitosennomusha) wrote:
I was on the beach of St. Kitts walking up to a shack to purchase a coke while my Dad was still floating around out in the ocean. There were people playing vollyball, hanging out, etc. ONe of the natives had a machete and took off running toward everyone shouting, "Who wants some, who wants some" in a jamaican type accent. Althought I felt he was only being playful I viewed this demeanor as insane. The native ran toward me and I was not going to take a chance. I dropped my expensive $2.60 10 oz can of coke in the sand and burriend him in the sand with a kote-gaeshi variation. He repeatedly said with his accent, "Just playing man, just playing". I told him that running at people with a machete was not viewed in good spirit. I swung and stuck the machete in a side post of the hut and returned to the ocean.
Ki/disposition/attitude sensitivity training is an important aspect of aikido in my book. Many times its the only thing that allows us to make the right decision when an attack is not as easily and clearly defined as it is in the dojo. Sometimes a tricky/undefined attack can make Tori place himself off balance by reacting too soon and not maintaining self control.
I have often found myself in a similar situation to Brad (being an island man myself). The attacks are usually with beer bottles or machetes, by folks who may "appear" crazy and up until the last instant one is not exactly sure whether the aggression is real or feigned (unless one is accustomed to that sort of foolery).
I guess that phrase about staring death right in the face to illuminate the path has some application here
. Its at the point where things can go terribly awry or perfectly correct that the most suitable technique presents itself in my humble opinion.
In my life I think this is the most common manifestation of my training - the practice of feeling out/sensing the intent of the other person, whether friend, client, lover or business associate- while maintaining the tenets of aiki to protect the other as you apply technique.
Just some rambling thoughts on a Friday evening