Thread: Ueshiba's Aiki
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Old 11-18-2011, 10:52 AM   #553
Ken McGrew
Dojo: Aikido at UAB
Location: Birmingham, Alabama
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 202
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

I provided the other side a great hint which they failed to recognize. Here it is spelled out in great detail for them: A trained historian would be trying to access original documents like O Sensei's travel diary and his callendars. As well as those of the people around him. As well as any related receipts Etc. Only with these will you be able to establish how much he traveled during different periods and with whom.

Of course, this is a waste of time. It is not the sort of evidence that will prove what the other side wants to prove, which is that O Sensei did not have time to teach the Aiki of Aikido. The definition of instuction that they want to use is rediculously narrow.

They also fail to recognize that the things they have documented, like O Sensei lecturing on spiritual matters rather than showing technique, are actually support for the positions that I and others have presented - the positions that are supported by the current translations Etc. of his written words and all the other accounts that they want to dispute - as they suggest that Aiki, for O Sensei, was about blending and joining and that this had a largely spiritual basis in his understanding of how the Aiki of Aikido worked. Lecturing on spiritual matters was lecturing on Aiki, which the students then tried to apply.

These three paragraphs point to the obvious lack of rigor so far as methodology, and in particular analysis, are concerned. Of course, similar mistakes have been made throughout by the other side (who pretend to speak with one voice when it's helpful and then object when they are referred to as one group when it's helpful to their efforts to win rather than determine the truth). A few new translationed lines don't undermine the bulk of written work by O Sensei. It would be necessary to retranslate everyting, have the new translations examined by others for confirmation, and then only if they completely changed the meaning of what O Sensei was writing would it matter. There are also all the spoken interviews he gave that support the blending notion of Aiki. And so on and so forth. All the evidence given on several fronts just doesn't hold up.

The Dobson seminar transcription really points to the way the other side is using evidence. Because they can't dispute Dobson Sensei's own words, they accuse me of claiming to know him better than his own student and say they wish Dobson Sensei was here to speak for himself. He did speak for himself. It's on video. Any historian would agree. You have to show how he didn't mean what he said, maybe he was saying it under duress, maybe someone had a gun pointed at him from across the room. Otherwise he said what he said and we must assume he meant what he said (and showed as the video is unambiguous when you watch it). Methodological rigor.

The advocates this IS notion of Aiki make great claims that their Aiki is missing from Aikido and is in fact the secret of Aikido. Above we have two recent posts from the other side. One says that Aikido doesn't work. The other says that Aikido may work like a car in first gear but IS training will make it better. Neither back up their speculation with anything. These are just statement. If IS training is merely a way to make Aikido better, then it is not the secret to making Aikido work. If Aikido doesn't work, then IS training may be the missing link to make Aikido work. That statement, however, that Aikido doesn't work under duress or against bigger people is just rediculous. The other side is on an Aikido forum, rather than an IS forum, in order to recruit Aikido people. You won't recruit many Aikido people by trying to convince them that Aikido doesn't work. There is no concensus of that on this forum. Maybe on an MMA forum. We've all felt Aikido work. We may have had to use it. Our students may have been forced to use it.

It goes round and round with circular reasoning and circular argumentation, contradictory arguments from one post to another as if they could have it both ways to score points, and little evidence to support their claims. Lots of personal attacks. And still no concrete discussion of what they do and how it applies in martial situations. They say what it is not and yet claim that it is impossible to say what it is. It slices, it dices, it cures cancer, it will grow your hair back, change your body, and make you into a real budo man. We can't tell you what it is, but we can prove that it's the secret of Aikido when you come to the siminar, play by our rules of ukemi, and we can prove that we are right. Problem is that this does't prove your claims. It just proves that you are good at doing whatever it is that you are doing. You claim it's the secret to the jo trick. So what. The jo trick is not necessary to be able to do Aikido. Can Mr. Harden do the jo trick? Then maybe he hasn't proven that he found the secret to jo trick after all.

Last edited by Ken McGrew : 11-18-2011 at 11:00 AM.