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Old 11-19-2007, 03:31 PM   #57
Keith Larman
Dojo: AIA, Los Angeles, CA
Location: California
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 1,604
Re: significance to testing/belt rank?

Daniel Blanco wrote: View Post
Rank shows a persons/self progression through aikido,but sometimes it just builds egos for people.
I would disagree. Rank doesn't build ego. Rank is just what it is - nothing more, nothing less. Some develop big egos after being given certain ranks, but often they develop those egos independantly of it. Heck, some have the ego with very little rank. Some have the ego the day they begin and are never able to adequately empty their cups to learn what is being taught. Lots of those around even on on-line forums.

Some seem to look down on the concept of ranking. Frankly I find peoples' *reaction* to attaining higher rank more of the issue and vastly more indicative of problems. It has nothing to do with the rank per se. It has everything to do with human frailties. If someone earns their rank, they earned it, ego or not. I regularly train with two shichidan. Both humble, nice guys. No pretense. We train, get beers, go cut up tatami, and basically enjoy ourselves (not necessarily in that order -- no beer before cutting).

Of course it doesn't mean I'll have any respect for a person with an inflated opinion of themselves solely due to having attained a high rank. I will, however, respect the rank and position the person has earned. There is a difference.