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Old 10-24-2012, 06:43 AM   #279
Dojo: Aiki Kurabu
Location: Elizabethtown, PA
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 1,110
Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

Lee Salzman wrote: View Post
Well, I suppose we must take Mr. Alexander at his word when he defines the following:

Note the specific point there - "... AWASE is more dynamic. The defender uses his own body movement to merge into the attacker's power. ..."

Whereas, the concept of aiki being espoused here does not require movement. It does not require merging into the attacker's power. With aiki, you are merely being you - you were being you before the encounter, you are being you during the encounter, you are being you after the encounter. It is just that, through tanren, you have changed what "being you" means so that anyone who encounters you is encountering a body infused with aiki. Perhaps closer to what Mr. Alexander calls above a "perfect balance", except it does not require a stance or a holding a static position or hanmi, nor does it require moving - whatever you do, it is infused with aiki.

Even taking balance, while a potential side-effect of aiki, is not required - the attacker cannot bring his power to bear because you are aiki - not because he has no balance. In a tautological sort of way, with aiki, the attacker's power is irrelevant simply because the attacker's power is irrelevant.

The concept of awase, such as he is describing it, is not the point of contention. The contention is he equates awase with aiki:

So, yes, awase is important to his execution of aikido. But it is not, as defined by Mr. Alexander previously, the principle of aiki. It is sort of like the nitpicking about "extend ki" vs. "ki is extended", you don't merge into the attacker, he merges into you, where aiki is concerned.

You are taken out of the equation in a sense - transparent power. How can one harmonize with an attacker if they have to exert their will on the attacker's will with the attacker's permission - subvert, covert, or any other way? That is discord.

You exert your will - and the attacker follows your will - that is harmony - everything in its right place. There was no physical blending, no timing tricks - they touched you and became part of you without you doing anything to them or reading them. Why forge the mind and body if in the end you are just assimilating to the attacker's will? You forge the mind and body to not fight the attacker's will - no discord, you simply don't even consider it - so that you can do what you want, and the attacker's coming along for the ride because he can't resist.
Well said Lee!

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