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Old 08-29-2007, 12:06 AM   #47
Mike Haftel
Location: Hokkaido
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 87
Re: What makes Aikido aikido (to you)?

Mark Murray wrote: View Post
Well, it's like saying, okay, you have silverware. What makes a spoon a spoon to you and what makes it not a spoon?

I see answers like:
I can eat with the spoon.
The spoon is a spoon.
The spoon picks up food.
The spoon fits in my hand.
The spoon is a utensil.

While all well and good and do define a spoon, they also define all other silverware. And they aren't really answers to the second question.

A spoon catches food in the curvature better than a fork.
A spoon will ladle while a fork will sift.
A spoon can be used to cut but depending on the user, it might not cut as well as a knife.

So, if someone says that aikido is aikido to them because it is a path of least resistance, then that is exactly what judo does. So, how is that definition not judo to them? And, what makes it NOT aikido? What defining limits are there that do not spill over to judo in path of least resistance. If you look at Mifune, he could have done aikido easily. Yet, all can tell that he isn't doing aikido. He's doing judo. But, most answers that I saw here apply equally well to what Mifune does as they do to aikido. How then, does that replied answer define what makes Aikido aikido to them?

Am I making any sense at all?
Yes, I understand.

Questions, like the one posed in this thread, can not be answered using written word or verbal communicaiton. The world must be experienced; it can not be abstracted or defined in terms.

The only logical answer to the questions like, "What is Aikido? How is Aikido Aikido? How is Aikido not Aikido?" would be to demonstrate Aikido ON the person doing the asking.

It's like trying to describe what salt tastes like to somebody who has never had it, or someone who has no taste buds, or someone who has no concept of taste, itself.

But, this is all just rehashed theories and thoughts from other studies like linguistics, semantics, pragmatics, Taoism, and the Ding an Sich.

"What is a spoon?" *hols up a spoon*
"How is a spoon, a spoon?" *uses a spoon for its original, intended purpose*
"How is a spoon not a spoon?" *uses it for some other purpose* Also, a thing can be defined by what it is not. For example, the thing...*spoon* a "spoon" because of the lack of *spoon* where the concave area is.

So...what is Aikido? How is it Aikido? How is it not Aikido?

Go to an Aikido dojo, hop on the mats and find out.

Anything anybody talks about, reads about, watches, or thinks not Aikido.

Kind of reminds me of:

"The Tao that can be told is not the eternal Tao;
The name that can be named is not the eternal name.
The nameless is the beginning of heaven and earth.
The named is the mother of ten thousand things.
Ever desireless, one can see the mystery.
Ever desiring, one can see the manifestations.
These two spring from the same source but differ in name;
this appears as darkness.
Darkness within darkness.
The gate to all mystery."

I'm not trying to get all mystical and esoteric here. It is simple. A thing is what it is. Nothing more; nothing less.

I don't really know what Aikido is, though. I don't think I've ever really experienced it before.

Last edited by Mike Haftel : 08-29-2007 at 12:11 AM.
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