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Old 01-16-2012, 05:05 AM   #32
Carsten Möllering
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Dojo: Hildesheimer Aikido Verein
Location: Hildesheim
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 932
Re: bokken suburi questions

David Soroko wrote: View Post
1. As a body of knowledge passed from person to person, Aikido isn't "self-correcting".
Yes. Isn't this the reason why we have kihon no kata and emphasize so much on doing and transmitting "correct" kihon waza? (At least I know it this way.)
And also: Isn't this the reason why the gradings up to yondan are "simply" technical examinations and are - at least in our federation - held openly and by a committee of teachers? To meet a certain "standard"?
And, at last: Isn't this the reason why it is said to be so very important to have a personal teacher-student-relationship over years? Isn't this why knowing one's own "lineage" or "line of tradition" is held high?

I think this "institutionalisation " of transmitting aikido is important. Because aikido isn't "self-correcting" it needs a kind of corrective.

That said

... a student may miss a detail from her teacher's demonstration ...
Isn't this what happened from the beginning on?

... another student may wilfully modify things ...
Isn't it more usual that modifying happens unwittingl? Just because of maybe having shorter or longer arms or something like that.

So yes: Transmitting the original knowledge is crucial. But isn't it also self evident that everything in the world changes to a certain degree?

For my part, I am known as a "ultra-traditionalis aikidoka".
And the parts of the puzzle I described above are - in my eyes - vehicles to understand and being able to give on the tradition, the knowledge we got from our teachers. It's - in my eyes - a way of looking deeper into the art, not a way leave it.

2. Aikido is martially effective. ... Regardless of other things Aikido brings to the table (health benefits, world piece, etc...) it has to be effective.

So how would an Aikido practitioner, who accepts points one and two, think about assimilating influences from other martial arts?
Again, for my part, I don't think it to be helpfull, interesting or necessary to assimilate or integrate influences from outside. But I don't think aikido to be an isolated and unique entity. It is a budo. And other budo simply exist beside it. And sometimes an aspect of another budo casts a light on a cerstain aspect of aikido and helps to better understand it.
And this has always been the case, I think. Aikido never has been isolated. Haven't there been connections to various other ryu / budo all over the time?
And sometimes they help to get back to the roots or to reveal a modification, which is only to be seen from the outside.
So I think: This also can be a form of corrective and help to better understand and better hand on the original tradition of aikido.

For me, having accepted points one and two, proper training consists of following as closely as possible my teachers
That is exactly, what I try to do. ;-) And what my teacher did: Following his teacher(s).
I don't think, that this "method" of growing, understanding and passing on the given tradition is beyond dispute?
Isn't this way the other way is called "disgraceful"? (Although it can be the right one for certain students. )
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