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Old 09-05-2014, 06:25 PM   #10
Keith Larman
Dojo: AIA, Los Angeles, CA
Location: California
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 1,604
Re: Refining my view of aiki

David Skaggs wrote: View Post
The ip/is/ihtbf/aiki people on this forum are not able to describe how aiki works without resorting to Japanese or Chinese culture and language because they do not have an understanding of how what they are doing works.


The fact that you or anyone does not understand a description does not mean the person saying it does not understand how it works. And the utilization of Japanese or Chinese terminology appears to me to be appropriate if a) the terms are explained as best possible and b) there may not be perfectly equivalent translations available in the target language. I use Japanese terms all the time when discussing Japanese swords and sword arts because a) it is precise and b) they are correct. Especially when they don't have exact corollaries in English due to the unique evolution of the craft in that culture. After all, what is shibui *exactly*? And when does ko-suguha become chu suguha *exactly*? Oh, sorry, I meant a hamon. Oh, damn, sorry, I mean, um, temper line. DOH! No, sorry, temper line isn't strictly accurate although commonly used... Um, inter-crystalline structure transition region? No, that's not it... Um... The *pattern* formed by the inter-crystalline transitional region between the pearlitic body and martensitic edge. that's a bit closer but we seem to have lost something... Oh, yeah, with chu that means "middle" and that means kinda / sort mid "height" of the intercrystalline structure transition region as measured from the edge of the martenisitic edge?

Oh, and yeah, I kinda made some of that up on the fly because metallurgists right now are experiencing head exploding syndrome because it's obvious I don't understand the entirety of the metallurgical processes. But that's for another few volumes of writing later...

No, wait, what were we talking about? Oh, yeah, how if you can't explain it to someone who doesn't know much about the culture within which it arose, obviously you don't understand it yourself.

Oh, crap, never mind. Chu suguha. You know... Chu suguha. Don't know what that is? Huh, maybe you need to look at a few swords (well, Japanese swords. Um, well, Japanese -style swords. Um, well, no, properly differentially hardened swords made from the proper steel alloys and here I go again getting all specific and stuff) in person and learn more -- you can't learn *everything* on-line after all... but I digress...

And since Ueshiba Morihei was Japanese... And visited Mongolia... And read old classics from China... It's not exactly rocket science that his discussions were couched in those terms.

And all that said, that is quite a leap to say that because you haven't had it explained to you to your satisfaction in your terms that the people trying to explain therefore don't understand it what they're saying.

Or... In other words... Your understanding is not a prerequisite for truth value nor necessarily a measure of the quality of explication. The fault could lie elsewhere...

Last edited by Keith Larman : 09-05-2014 at 06:32 PM.

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