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Old 01-24-2011, 12:54 PM   #26
mathewjgano's Avatar
Dojo: Tsubaki Kannagara Jinja Aikidojo; Himeji Shodokan Dojo
Location: Renton
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 2,237
Re: Aikido training - Why are you searching for internal strength?

Mary Eastland wrote: View Post
Why are you searching for internal strength? Why is it missing from your Aikido training? Why are you going outside your art to find it? When I read the threads about this training it makes me wonder what you are lacking that you have to go find it.
Once when I was joined in the conversation I was told I don't have it because one of my students doesn't have it. If you asked me about that student I would agree. His heart was not in it. Aikido training lets your inner strength out. You don't have to go to an expert to find it.
Aikido training for me is a whole practice…the development of correct feeling is just part of the process in becoming what Aikido is molding me into. Are you missing the point in your impatience to be the strongest person alive?
Well, I think the point varies based on individual values. On some level I agree you don't have to go to an expert to find out how to use what you already have. It does make a difference though. For the same reason we might go outside ourselves to train in Aikido might we go outside our Aikido to train in other versions of it, or other practices which fit well with it. The question to my mind is always one of individual purpose. It might not have much to do with anything missing so much as with recognizing complimentary sets of skills.
Speaking as someone who really tends to avoid power, I can see why people might be very concerned with developing "internal power." With that comes a degree of empowerment and healthfulness which can lend itself to a variety of life experiences. Some folks are probably more drawn to the power at the expense of other important subtleties, so I also think the questions you posed are important. I knew a lot of people growing up who typified that behavior, and I would agree with the idea that power, even lasting forms of it, is...fleeting; situational. As such I don't put much faith in it...on the whole, anyway. I've always tended toward concepts like "inner strength" because they helped me remain flexible in an often inflexible world. Still, i think "IP" is an important thing to consider because its usefulness is so widely applicable.

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