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Old 03-17-2007, 01:45 PM   #90
Josh Reyer
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Location: Aichi-ken, Nagoya-shi
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 644
Re: Dan, Mike, and Aikido

Mike Haft wrote: View Post
Given that I've not heard Dan or Mike say anything much more than what I already knew to be true and given that I am an aikidoka (i.e. an insider) I find myself once again wondering why they are here standing on the edge pissing in my pool. Just seems plain rude to me, even if they have good aim.

Sounds like you're taking their necessary generalizations far too personally.

If you understand what they say to be true, and you have the abilities they speak of, obviously they aren't talking about you when they say, "These skills aren't in Aikido like they should be." Frankly, Mike, even if these skills are common and developed throughout all of the KNK and its off-shoots, that still leaves the majority of aikido practioners: the lion's share of those under the Aikikai umbrella, Yoshinkan, and Shodokan. Respected practioners and teachers in those organizations have met Mike, Dan, Ark/Rob, Ushiro, and others, and said, "This is something that should be part of aikido, and is not as much as it should be." Does it matter that people ostensibly outside the fold do the convincing, as long as it's done? IMO, not really.

One could say that internal skills were always a part of the KNK, and so people in other organizations should have been looking there. But that's the beauty of outsiders. They are outside the politics. Tohei's been saying what Mike and Dan are saying for 35 years now. But the KNK and the Aikikai have essentially tuned each other out, each believing they were doing the "right" aikido. If Mike et al had never come on AikiWeb, and you said the same things that they have, do you think it would have been accepted? Some would have said, "Yeah, we already do that." Others would have said, "It's just parlor tricks; it's not martial enough." A lot would have said, "Well, it's all aikido; the only difference is the politics." Why is the KNK so conspicuously absent from the Aiki Expos/Friendship Demos, despite the presence of so many "outsiders"? I'm not casting blame there; I truly don't know why top KNK shihan weren't there. But I suspect whatever reason it is, is also why Mike, Dan, and other "outsiders" have proven to be the catalyst, at least in a small way, for many to re-examine their aikido, and what they should be able to do.

If you agree with Dan and Mike, and understand what they are talking about, then there should be no need to argue with them. You're in a position to help translate what they are saying into an aikido idiom. Blend and redirect, is that not the aikido philosophy?

Josh Reyer

The lyf so short, the crafte so longe to lerne,
Th'assay so harde, so sharpe the conquerynge...
- Chaucer
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