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Old 07-22-2003, 02:21 PM   #8
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Dojo: Aikido Bukou
Join Date: Sep 2002
Posts: 240
Opher Donchin (opherdonchin) wrote:
I don't think that witnessing is the same as doing nothing. Witnessing opens you up to the situation, allows you to perceive your options more clearly, and tunes you into subtleties that disappear when you are focused on your own actions. Witnessing is an active participation that affects everyone else involved and how the situation unfolds.
Opher, I agree with this point for certain. I'm looking at it from a "helping" standpoint. The observation you're talking about is an effective method of assisting, but not for most situations. As it goes, if nothing happens, _nothing_ happens.

Sure, you need to understand your situation as much as possible, which enables you to become more adept at helping others, like wayward students. Still, watching, by itself, accomplishes nothing for the person being watched - they're basically a rat in their own maze for your edification. What comes afterwards, yes, may help.

But not in this story's case, which caused my indigestion. The observation only led to the killing of a student who might have had other options. Then, maybe not, which may be implied in the anecdote -- maybe the teacher knew enough about the student and did make the right decision.

I'd like to amend the story: same situation, same teacher, different student. The outcome of the attack is instead a whupping followed by some tea.

Whoa! That's a lot about such a short story! I have issues; I know, I know.


Phillip Johnson
Enso Aikido Dojo, Burnsville, MN
An Aikido Bukou Dojo
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