Robert Fortune wrote:
Having taken the time to read Mr. Ledyard's article I have a comment or two about my thoughts of it. I wondered where he as the top "Kahuna" (a Hawaiian word meaning "expert" used as usual in a joking way as if such [Hawaiian] people were little more than silly - nice one Mr. Ledyard) was as this new social atmosphere was unfolding in *his* dojo? MIA?
Aikido *is* clearly intended to be more than the study of the physical mechanics which anyone through repetition can learn easily enough. Want to learn how to knock people out or simply kick a**? Start doing it as best as you can and keep at it long enough and in time you'll improve. Is that Aikido? I don't so, but hey who am I to say what it is to you? Peace, Justice & Love.
Where I have been is where I have always been. On the mat five to seven days a week for the seventeen years my dojo has been open. All the patterns I have talked about I see in potential with my own students and I try as best I can to head them in a better direction. If you think I am interested in just kicking ass then you have absolutely no idea what I do in my Aikido or what I teach. Reaching that conclusion from what I read means you have no idea what I was getting at.Or perhaps what I wrote pushes some buttons... it was certainly designed to do that.
Should you think that this all represents some aberrant thinking on my part, I can assure you that when you get a group of senior folks together and they talk about Aikido this type of conversation comes up all the time. I simply wanted to throw it out for wider dissemination.
As for making the leap that I am somehow treating the Hawaiian people / culture disrepectfully... well, please... All sorts of words have come into English usage from other languages, Yiddish being the most notable. When I call someone a putz I am in no way disrepecting the Jewish people, simply the fellow to whom I am directing the term.