"Cheating" to survive a real fight
O-Sensei said that 70% of a fight is atemi, the rest is instantaneous throws and apparently joint locks and pins are relegated to the realm of dealing with roudy family and drunks.
I have this on some authority because I read it in Aikido Shugyo by Gozo Shioda. A lot of people have said that atemi as an Aikido strategy is inherintly un-Aikido-like. So does this invalidate what the founder said? How widely do you define Atemi anyway? Do kicks count as atemi even though most dojos rarely practice throwing sharp, quick kicks and the kicks we do defend against are laughably untrained, slow and off-balance - completely unlike anyone with some experience in a percussive martial art. How about headbutts? How about a knee to the groin?
The big question though is would the Aikido you use to survive a real fight look anything at all like the idealised Aikido that we practice? If not can you even still call it Aikido?
I would like to site the example of the UFC guys, many of whom claim to have X number of years experience in martial art Y and hold rank Z. Clearly some of this is just to psych-out an opponent but surely some of them are telling the truth and yet any technique just falls apart when the bell rings for the start of a round. They all resort to the standard kick-punch-punch-tackle strategy. Rarely do you ever see the kind of expert take-downs that judoka are capable of in heated competitions.
Another issue, we practice evasion of attacks with tai-sabaki. Are Aikidoka in general too "scared" to get hit? Getting punched or kicked in a real fight is inevitable, its easy in a classroom situation to just stop right there and try again from the beginning but shouldnt we also be able to apply technique even when a hit has been landed?
Surely you can say that in a real fight, a life or death struggle, you must do everything you can to survive but does that include discarding the moral principles of Aikido when it suits us?