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Old 06-20-2004, 01:37 PM   #12
Dojo: Chicago Aikikai
Location: Chicago, IL
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 78
Respect vs. Worship

Brendan Basone wrote:
When you bow at the close of an aikido lesson do you worship or just show honour to a person or philosophy which improves self esteem?

I feel it meant to much when I bowed and had to pray later because of it concerning it.

There are Biblical examples of this such as when Namaan the Syrian who asked a prophet for permission to bow with the others to a false God. And there were many examples with Jesus. Early christians chose death instead of calling the Emperor lord...

What's it to you fellows? How do you deal with it according to your conscience and faith?

OSensei is not a false God. He was, literally, a great teacher, not a deity.

I'm Christian, and my feeling on the whole bowing to the shomen thing is a sign of Respect, not Worship. It has nothing to do with self esteem or showing honor. It's simply an act of thanks.

The Emperor of Rome insisted upon being treated like a God. It was one of the bases of the power of the empire. OSensei may have felt he was the reincarnation of a Shinto deity, but I don't think he demanded absolute submission from anyone. He simply taught.

The bow is just a show of respect and thanks, not worship. It's not a kowtow.

A lot of it is a matter of how you see it.

Does that help?

Yours in ukemi,

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