Re: To bow or not to bow
I am frankly amazed that this discussion is still going on. We have one person talking as though he was a representative for 2 billion people, we have other people talk about how things look through their particular religious prisms.
The bow (standing or sitting) takes place within the context of the Japanese culture. What a surprise to notice that a bow is viewed differently from another culture. If a person is simply incapable and/or unwilling to look at a bow from the Japanese perspective, then that pretty clearly points out that person's degree of rigidity, intolerance,.....
Aikido is a Japanese Martial Art. The bow in the dojo takes place within that cultural milieu. If the teacher believes that this particular aspect is an important part of the practice within that cultural milieu than that is the rule for that dojo. A student can simply follow the rules or find another place to study.
Once again, I would like to point out that when dealing with religious and political issues, emotions tend to rule out over common sense, to the point where the very religious and very political tend to insist upon people being open to their points of view while being generally intolerant to the points of view of others.