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Old 06-16-2013, 02:02 AM   #35
Carl Thompson
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Location: Kasama
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 491
Re: Four Generations of the Ueshiba Family

Hi Dan (and Chris)
Dan Rubin wrote: View Post
I didn't know that. If all dojos could do that (have a hombu track and a dojo track), the relevance of hombu would soon reveal itself. There are advantages and disadvantages to both tracks. If hombu found its appeal waning, it could change some things around (if it chose to) to make itself more attractive, such as reducing some fees. In other words, with that competition, let the marketplace decide.
There are all kinds of situations out there but I think the gist of the original article was that Doshu doesnft personally know the students getting their ranks from him, that feedback for how well one is progressing doesnft come with any perks for members and that distance from the iemoto lineage and loss of personal connection will cause people to leave. Ifd say that outside of immediate access to the iemoto lineage of aikido transmission (thatfs probably most of the Aikikai – and even in the Hombu people follow their favourite shihans), Doshufs role is more as a figurehead and his seal is kind of like having HRH Elizabeth Windsor on your pound sterling. It just shows that what your sensei says you learned is formally recognised elsewhere in the founderfs organisation. IMO, for most, their rank indicates a personal relationship with their teachers. I donft think people leave for lack of perks or connection to the iemoto anymore than people don't use pounds because they don't know the queen. You might get the odd teacher offering the Bristol Pound alongside the normal currency, but the main currency-related problem I've heard of is the one you mentioned: Some people find the one-off cost of membership (usually at shodan) and grading fees are a bit high.

To Chris, it looks to me more like an argument of degree whether or not the grades have enough oversight and peer review. I got the impression you were implying that there was none earlier on in the thread. Sorry if I am mistaken. In any case, more checks, enforcing the kind of system used by Havard or the medical profession across the board (i.e.: internationally, dealing with all kinds of national requirements) would just bump the price up and price seems to be most peoplefs gripe.

Maybe some official guidelines for a system of checks on procedure might help if it doesnft cause too much interference. Regarding the cost, people might also feel better if they got a clearer view of where the money is going.

Christopher Li wrote: View Post
The Aikikai has no idea how most people are getting promoted - and that leaves things wide open for abuse.
To an extent, I can imagine there are some lineages with very different methods who would say it isnft any of the Aikikaifs business (not that Ifm saying I agree with that). As for abuse, itfs not quite the same as the medical profession is it? But I agree it can happen through the delegation you mentioned (the 4th dan teacher choosing who can test under the visiting 6th dan at the next seminar for example).
Christopher Li wrote: View Post
Now, I think that a good argument could be made for a very traditional system of organization where all ranks and licenses come solely from your instructor and their worth is only judged based upon that instructor.
The situation that I just described could still happen in this case but there would be no one above to report it to. It certainly does happen in independent groups outside of the Aikikai. And I think most people do judge ranks on their instructor, not Doshu (unless Doshu is their main instructor). The first things I get asked about when I visit another dojo are where Ifve trained and who my teachers are.

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