Szczepan Janczuk wrote:
I don't think there is any problem with transmission. Folks who have a real desire to serious study with a Master will find a way. Others, who are content with less profound study, can study with local instructors. Even in shihan's dojo there is only small group of ppl wanting serious instruction.
Natural selection(instead of introduction letters) still does its job.
Happy New Year!
Of course, you are right. In the early days O Sensei never advertised. He attracted people by word of mouth, or in the case of Chiba Shihan, by a photograph. And the selection process was rigorous. However, in the early days of the Kobukan I do not believe that aiki-budo/do was ever intended as a martial art available for everybody. I think it was Kisshomaru who thought of the possibilities after the war. On the other hand, in the last days at the Kobukan, the Founder taught a large variety of people, especially the military, and so the early one-to-one situation of the Kobukan ceased to be possible.
In itself, this might make little difference to training methods, for, after all, Chiba Sensei was a deshi of Kisshomaru Ueshiba and mainly trained at the Tokyo Hombu, where training was as rigorous as at Iwama. Nowadays a shihan perhaps has to consider the needs of a wider spectrum of students than the Founder had to do.