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Old 09-10-2004, 06:00 AM   #18
ian's Avatar
Dojo: University of Ulster, Coleriane
Location: Northern Ireland
Join Date: Oct 2000
Posts: 1,654
Re: Article: Lack of Spirituality by George S. Ledyard

Hmm. Though I respect George for the wealth of understanding in aikido he provides aikiweb, I would disagree with this article. For several points:
1. Ueshiba did not want people to adopt the same religious practise.
2. Ueshiba took certain decisions because they were right for him. To copy his life and think we could be more like Ueshiba is superficial. It is equivalent to copying someones techniques but not understanding the underlying principles.
3. It is my belief that spiritual understanding comes from an interaction between yourself and the real world (i.e. through experience). Although knowledege and education can guide your decisions, any ad-hoc or enforced adoption of a religion results in empty spirituality.

In my mind Ueshiba was much more philosophical and exploratory than those who try to copy him. He trained with many different martial experts, and also had the equivalent spiritual quest. It is not the destination, but the journey, which makes us who we are. I would say to people trying to emulate Ueshibas life, open your eyes, think for yourself, and find out what your OWN journey is.

---understanding aikido is understanding the training method---
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