View Single Post
Old 02-27-2008, 08:30 AM   #59
Mike Sigman
Location: Durango, CO
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 4,123
Re: why focus on internal power

Kevin Leavitt wrote: View Post
First, how would you know what he used, or what he felt like? Did you study with him?

Second, At what level of development or experience are you speaking from that allows you to pass judgement on what he is doing?

What I mean by that is this. Is it theory or assumption that you base your conclusions on? Or have you formed a hypothesis, and have developed a set of parameters and conditions upon which you can demonstrate or replicate what you think O'Sensei did?

If not, then you are basing your conclusion about what is going on by transposition. That is, through the experiences or conclusions of others. That is, you are operating from a position based on faith that this is indeed what is going on, and then saying "I Know".

To me, this is fundamentalist thinking at it's best, and it can be dangerous to the yourself, society, and the art.

It represents, IMO, the kind of example that Mike Sigman was talking about when he was concerned about handing this out to "the wrong people".
I'm not Cady and I'm neither one way or another on the philosophical worry about peace coming through force... but I hate to miss a good argument.

Couple of things. Cady doesn't need to be there to actually see on film a number of the things Ueshiba was doing. One thing Ueshiba, Tohei and others did was to use a lot of standard, Asia-wide "ki demonstrations" showing they couldn't be pushed over, unbendable arm, same general store-and-release methods of power, and so on. All the while talking about ki and kokyu power. Unless you want to hypothesize that Ueshiba, Tohei, and others are and were doing the same demonstrations with some different mode of power (trust me, that would be an absurd position to take), then you should give Cady credit for stating the obvious, *if* you've got a vague idea how these demos/tricks worked. And now you do.

Secondly, Ueshiba's Douka and writings refer to the same Yin-Yang cosmology that is used by the Chinese, even though it's sort of artlessly dressed up as "Shintoism", in some respects. The religion he used derives from Vajrayana Buddhism and even uses the same hand gestures and other rituals (and undoubtedly, training methods) within it. The cosmology referring to "harmony with the universe" means harmony with the physical laws of the universe. If you grab me, Kevin, and I use my mentally-directed ki/jin to add to your push (in a simple example), thus moving you away, then your own attack took you away because of aiki. We "blended", but in the refined sense. This is the type of ki usage that gives the old meaning of "harmony with the universe".... not a peace and love meaning. At a well-trained, higher level, any attack by an opponent is simply blended with via "aiki" and thus it becomes impossible for an opponent to really attack. Theoretically. But you should be able to extrapolate that now.

I think many of the western "peace and love" and "Ueshiba was about harmony" are taking a small part of the things he said late in life and blowing them out of proportion. Either that, or their are a *lot* of the original Uchi-Deshi who missed the point that some westerners think they see, if you look at the actions and words of the deshi.

Generally, I don't disagree with Cady, although I've never seen what she can do (puportedly, she's going to throw me around like a red-headed step-child if we ever meet!). My comment about this thread is that no one I've heard argue the peace and harmony routine has ever had full support for that thesis, but Cady's general argument can be pretty well supported by the available films, etc., of and by O-Sensei.