Shaun Ravens wrote:
...and having read all of these, how has it improved your aikido? To be clear, how has it enabled your aikido to move beyond the realm of what most everyone else was/is doing out there? Anyone?
Well, it has not hurt it any
Actually, reading or obtaining any knowledge will not improve anything - what makes a difference is what action is done with that knowledge. The information contained in those books are individual perceptions and believes of the authors and can only serve as insights into what Kototama meant to them. I believe each individual needs to establish their own beliefs on what it is that motivates their life. If we can share some of the beliefs of others who have gone before us, fine - but the true motivators can only be found deep within oneself.