View Single Post
Old 04-17-2010, 10:05 PM   #290
Mike Sigman
Location: Durango, CO
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 4,123
Re: Video definitions, "Aiki" and other terms.

Michael Varin wrote: View Post
After 12 pages and 288 posts, only Mark and Chris posted videos.
I dunno... IIRC I have put out to the public at least 6 or 7 videos on how to get started with at least the jin (kokyu) side of things. Far more complete and "how-to" than anything on this forum. And the vids I put out don't even begin to approach the whole topic that I think is relevant to the I.S. topic.

Maybe this is a very difficult discussion to have. Maybe the definition is elusive. But far too much of the "discussion" is premised on the conclusion that "aiki" = internal strength = structure.
I've never made such a premise. Those topics are related, but they certainly don't deserve the "=" (equal sign) that you're asserting.

In my opinion, based on my experience and knowledge, acquired in person from various instructors, my own training, and from research about Morihei Ueshiba, aikido, and daito ryu, and related arts and philosophies, I believe that definition to be incorrect, and actually counter to the weight of the evidence.

I would say that most of what has been described should be referred to as kokyu or kokyu ryoku. I understand that there may not be a clean line between these concepts, and that there is most definitely relation and overlap.

If I'm not mistaken, I believe you (Mike Sigman) even said kokyu is more appropriate, although you prefer to use the Chinese terms when discussing these things.
I stand by that, BTW.

As for aiki = timing, that is clearly an incomplete definition. What is not so clear is whether timing was all that was being conveyed.

Does the definition, no matter what you think it is, affect the manifestation of the physical skills being described? No. Does it affect our (as aikidoists) art? Absolutely. It is the "way of aiki" -- whatever that is.
Just as a note:.... don't forget that I did Aikido for around 7 years (not a negligible amount of time, really), so the reference to authority about "our.... as Aikidoists" doesn't really fly. If western Aikido had given me the part of Aikido that I was interested in and could see proof of, I'd still be in Aikido.

I'm sure that some people will disagree with me, but those people are rightfully the subject of some of Dan Harden's comments about how many people go quiet after they see what the topic is. Me.... I met many people that I thought were worthwhile when I did Aikido, back in the old days. My comments about internal strength have *always* been more along the lines of "Guys... I think that here's an important datum we've been missing". In terms of proselityzing other people, I couldn't care less. I actively looked; if they aren't actively looking, screw'em.