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Old 11-09-2012, 07:40 PM   #48
David Orange
Dojo: Aozora Dojo
Location: Birmingham, AL
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 1,511
Re: The Fear of Power

Charles David Henderson wrote: View Post
For example: Is power, in Melville's sense, a sufficient cause of this physical grace (or martial efficacy) even if it is accepted as a necessary one? Metaphorically -- does the whale need to understand more than how to thrash its tail (powerfully) to glide through the ocean with grace and seeming effortlessness?
Well, if you read the whole chapter of that book, it goes into more detail as well as expanding on the subject. But in general, I understood that the strength and the grace are inseparable, as he says "Real strength never impairs beauty or harmony, but it often bestows it;"

Both the beauty and the strength are inherent in the nature of the whale. Real aikido also has both but it is possible to lose one or the other by excessive focus on the other. I think of the guy who does the "Real Aikido" videos on YouTube as an example of serious misunderstanding of the "strength" aspect, making his demonstrations not only violent but jerky and really uninteresting to me. However, we need not look outside this forum for examples of a denaturing of aikido through utter rejection of strength, resulting in something not only boring but embarrassing to watch. At least the Real Aikido guy, in wearing black belt, is consistent with that tradition. But, just as we can ask why a non-violent person would study a martial art, we have to wonder why they insist on wearing the black belt.



"That which has no substance can enter where there is no room."
Lao Tzu

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