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Old 02-25-2008, 04:11 PM   #8
Dojo: Zanshin Kai
Location: Birmingham
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 865
United Kingdom
Re: Bowing in aikido

Manos Saha wrote: View Post
Why do you need to bow so much while learning aikido? Bowing is Japanese culture and there is no need for it in training. I think rather than inducing respect, it gives ego.
You are learning a culture though. It's dressed up as Japanese culture but really it goes deeper than that, what you're learning is Budo, martial ways, warrior ways if you like.
A big part of that is picking up a desire to use good manners and developing and being able to demonstrate respect for other people. For one thing it keeps you safe, on the mat and off.

There's a chinese proverb that says that you're safe when polite but in danger when you're not.

I don't see how reigi builds an ego, if anything it does the opposite because bowing by defintion is an act of humility and is meaningless unless it's done in a spirit of humility and respect.
In fact if you're not feeling it then it'll show up in your reigi, you will be physically announcing to everyone who can see that you have no respect. Loose the idea that it induces anything, you, through your own hard work and deep thought develop understanding and respect which will then be reflected in the quaility of your reigi. Just like in normal life polite respectful people naturally have good manners.

Unless you mean that someone else is getting an ego from you bowing.
In which case you should bear in mind that reigi is simply a physical expression of how you feel, if I bow to someone and they get off on it, that's their problem not mine, I can't do anything about their ego. In fact, it's not my place to sort out their ego, I'm training to sort out my ego.

Hakama folding, though, I'm right their with you. Handing someone a sweaty garment to fold up...............yeah.

Last edited by Ketsan : 02-25-2008 at 04:15 PM. Reason: Missed out a bit