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Old 02-11-2011, 08:22 AM   #27
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 3,394
Re: Really, grab my wrist!

Michael Varin wrote: View Post
Hmm? Care to elaborate?

While not purely a "weapons art," without any understanding of the sword, jo, and tanto one cannot fully grasp aikido.

And I would say that it is nearly irrefutable that the art is based on the sword.

Morihiro Saito briefly discusses these relationships at the beginning of Traditional Aikido, Vol. 1.

"Aikido is known by its taijutsu techniques. However, the taijutsu movements are based on movements of the ken." (p. 18)

" in aikido a contest means a fight with a real sword." (p. 19)
I know of no one in Japanese Koryu who ever considered Aikido a weapons based art. Instead of arguing with me you might want to consider a meeting of shihan that took place (Peter Goldsbury documented it somewhere here on Aikiweb). The meeting was regarding the subject of whether or not they should be demonstrating Weapons. One of the shihans stood up and said something along the lines of "We have to stop demonstrating sword. The audience is too educated and they are laughing at us."

It has pretty much been agreed that
1. Aikido demonstrates aikido movement using a weapon to demonstrate aikido movement
2. They do not use classical weapons theory (Samurai arts) to create Aikido movement
Those are two statements are very different things, and the movement expressed therein to wildly different undertakings.
Trouble arises when aikido people are not told this upfront and believe their art is based on weapons.
it is best to rise above individual statements and look to pedigree in the art itself and in it's place in the Samurai arts of Japan that modern adepts seem to want to compare it to. If that is your wish then do so with due diligence and rigor.
I can assure you in light of the full spectrum of what Japanese Samurai arts actually are, and Aikido's rather remarkable absence from being counted among them, that our opinions here do not matter at all..
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