View Single Post
Old 08-22-2016, 06:35 PM   #32
Dojo: Open Sky Aikikai
Location: Durham, NC
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 433
Re: Reconcile the world

Ron Ragusa wrote: View Post
I'm not sure how bowing to one another implies a transfer of power...

First off, your dojo sounds like a great place to train!

In terms of bowing, I had it taught to me that the depth of the bow was lower for the junior student, how quickly the left hand left the hip to join the right on the floor or if it went down at the same time was a motion of deference (how quickly can the sword be drawn, and the senior was given deference in the timing, junior bowed first and held the bow longer, etc. Lining up, the most senior by the door to protect the kohei and Sensei and everyone else in descending order both by rank and time in rank. There's about nine different ways to say thank you apparently, and some are very deferential, some are very informal for among friends or a dismissive insult used wrongly. It got a little complicated some days.

I did like that the start and end of every class was a visual reminder who I was to protect and nurture, and who I was to learn from. On the other hand, so many ways drilled in to "not give offense" got mixed up with so many reasons I "should take offense" at other student's perfectly happy bowing.
  Reply With Quote