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Old 11-14-2010, 01:20 PM   #262
graham christian
Dojo: golden center aikido-highgate
Location: london
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,697
Smile Re: To bow or not to bow

Alejandro Villanueva wrote: View Post
Graham, I thought we already settled that "your house, your rules" thing. What's being discussed here is the wisdom in some of said rules.

Otherwise, agreed.
Hi Alejandro, well said. I hadn't followed through the thread and was just giving an answer to the original one and the situation it had caused.

However, on seeing that the various rules are being discussed as to their relevance I would still say it is just a matter of respect no matter what rules are there, in other words it is not a matter of if it's right or wrong.

I remember when a student of mine took me to visit another dojo, telling me there was a master there and for whatever reason thought I should go. I duly obliged and went to this dojo in burnt oak.

As we entered the building there in front of us was a hall with the doors wide open and with a training session in full flow. Not knowing the etiquette of the situation my student entered and proceeded to sit down quietly on one of the seats along the side of the dojo. The session carried on and all was well so he came back out and asked me why I hadn't come in. I told him to follow what I do and not to say a word.

I knelt down, seiza, and told him to do the same and just to observe from where we were at the entrance. Immediately he did so the Sensei looked over, we acknowledged each other and he immediately sent over a student who asked if we would like to come in. The sensei was Kanetsuka Sensei.

After class Kanetsuka and I had a good humoured chat and discussion and then we left. My student was confused and asked me if he was an old friend of mine and if it was me who was playing a joke on him. I told him no, I had never met Kanetsuka before but it was time that he learned the true meaning of respect.

You see for me, if I trained in another dojo and found for example that the students were all taught to throw themselves when different techniques were applied then I would follow suit even though I know better for I am not there to make anybody wrong or to prove myself, I am there with respect for the way they do their Aikido and if I come away having learned nothing then in truth I have learned something.

On the other hand if the sensei asked me to help in some way with something then and only then would it be respectful to do so.

So if the rule is you pick your nose and you want to learn from that Sensei then out of respect you do so for you always have a choice.

Anyway, thats my humble opinion.

Keep living it. G.
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