Michael Stuempel wrote:
Who has been thrown fantastically and gotten up and said "show me how to do that" with a huge grin on their face? I have, many a time.
If I was the one being asked and I knew that I was going to face this person who was asking in competition at some point in the future...I'm not sure I could bring myself to show them something that they could use to defeat me.
There you go. My ego to protect my chances in a competition.
That was a really great point. This speaks to the extreme idea of the over-all feeling has to be cooperation towards a goal or goals.
The idea of things getting taken out to make the competition more safe is another con of too much competition.
The idea of competition being addictive is new to me. I didn't know that. (I do not yet believe that to be true. Can you convince me?)
I do see a great value in constantly testing yourself and raising the level or practice (the warriror's spirit, etc.). I think the question I have is something like: Are your internal reasons consistent with the philosophy of the art you are practicing? If I do something because I want to win, is that really budo or just sport? However, if I get involved in some budo-like sport with the overall goal of improving my budo, is that a much better goal?
I agree, that there are many people out there who just should never have accepted the high ranks they have given their inability to perform basic techniques on the average uke 3 or 4 ranks lower than them. That is terrible. Promoting based on loyalty instead of merit simply builds large but poor aikido organizations with the bar set a bit low - in my opinion.