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Old 08-05-2009, 07:55 PM   #591
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 498
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?


While the following two quotes are yours, they echo sentiments I have been hearing from many DRAJ, CMA, internal strength proponents and the like for years. I have taken issue with what is openly being said all along. However, while I point at them, they are illustrative more about a conversion of attitude than the change in methodology that lay at their source. The latter change I understand and agree with. The former one gives me great trepidation.

Rob Liberti wrote: View Post
The fact is that IT exists, and is coming to aikido. And anything about IT already being in aikido to the depth we are talking about or that IT is not coming pretty much brings to mind the term "polite fiction" at best. IT is the elephant in the room that will hopefully be in your own dojo sooner or late
Rob Liberti wrote: View Post
If O-Sensei were alive today and came to my dojo, I wouldn't be terribly concerned that what I was doing would be considered so much of a "change" of aikido, but I'd certainly welcome his insight.
With your first quote you seem to be making a sweeping conclusion about Aikido based upon your own limited experience. Now, I know that you have a more broad approach, both having taken your cues from many sources within Aikido and from without. Your experience is probably less than some, but I am sure more than most. At the same time, your statement tells me that you haven't had the opportunity to experience that level within Aikido. I have experienced that level and levels beyond that, too. Therefore, my conclusions differ from yours.

Your second quote frightens me even more. If O-Sensei were somehow alive and he came to my dojo, I would bow, take off my belt and carry buckets of hot water with it strewn over my back just to fill up his bath before I did anything else. After I prepared a meal for him and let him get some rest after his travels, observing him all the while I would just take ukemi from him until he was done with me. If I had the opportunity to ask any questions, well lets just say I have a whole list of them already written down. I wouldn't really ever be comfortable nor would I think be able to receive any insights at my level, and that's even if somehow as magically as he arrived, my Japanese was such to understand what he said without hesitation. Had you asked me what would Rob do? a few years ago, I would have answered, bout the same as me. Now, I am not sure...

Putting all of that aside for the moment, your next two quotes have me looking forward rather than back.
Rob Liberti wrote: View Post
I do have a fairly decent working understanding of kotodama. My influence generally comes from a synthesis of the kojiki and the Takeuchi scrolls. Somehow, I don't think Bruce was hep to that, but I could be wrong...
From my own experience, I haven't come across anyone outside of one source who had a real, working knowledge of the subject. Historical knowledge, yes... Religious take on it, sure... But a working knowledge like the one you are undertaking in internals...? Not one. Given that, I would be most interested in hearing/seeing/experiencing your take on this, Rob. In person of course...

Rob Liberti wrote: View Post
What's your point? I'm all about O-sensei's aikido. I even plan to some day get together with Shaun Ravens and beg him to show me any of the misogi drills he is willing to share.
Rob, my invitation to you has been open for years... As Mike's, Dan's and others have been for me. I understand that sometimes, life, finances and other opportunities often line up against you and keep some of the things high on our list from ever happening... til the time is right, of course. My last post about a time in the future when the passions run hot for such knowledge, combined with Mike's recent point about keeping the Aikido in Aikido and understanding that merely melting in internal power, doesn't really speak in full to what might be missing from Aikido, hidden in plain sight, or openly being taught to those openly seeking it from the right sources. I have plans for when that time in the future comes to be the present. I am sure I will see you, along with many others in this very thread, there on the mat, at that time.

I have always made the effort to be a conduit for seekers who come my way. I maintain the attitude that I am a "voice of experience than any "voice of authority." As such, anyone coming to me for anything has had the opportunity to learn directly from my teacher. Once they made their own connections, I preferred to get out of the way and encouraged them to go and get whatever they could directly from the sources I had the chance to seek out and learn from. When I met Abe Sensei he seemed very old at 77. Even then we said to ourselves, "Better make the most of the time we have..." and that is why I chose to dedicate the next 10 years of my life to tapping the source as often and as deeply as I could manage. Abe Sensei is now 94. Many things have changed in the last 17 years. That is both good and bad. There is so much more to learn, but little time within which to experience certain things first hand.There are things he is now willing to share that both eclipse and explain all of the past teachings. I can only hope to be lucky enough for things in my life to align themselves so that I can make one or two more visits. Fortunately Dan and Mike are young. Perhaps they will have even more to teach when they are in their 90's.

When I see that people seem to be after "power" of whatever sort, I am kind of dumbfounded given what really is available when it comes to understanding O-Sensei's Aikido. Power will always be there, but the sources who can and will confirm if the path you are on will lead you to the place you are seeking will not be there much longer.

Best in training to you and all...


I no longer participate in or read the discussion forums here on AikiWeb due to the unfair and uneven treatment of people by the owner/administrator.
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