Thread: Ki Eureka
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Old 01-07-2011, 01:50 PM   #15
Lee Salzman
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 406
Re: Ki Eureka

Mike Sigman wrote: View Post
Well, I'd disagree that "Aiki", as it has been characterized on this forum is the same thing as "internal strength". I'd be willing to say that it can be *part* of internal strength, but I haven't seen anyone really encapsulate internal strength in a term like "Aiki", although I understand the implication. It's demonstrably not really accurate, though. Not that I'm concerned about it; I just wanted to note it for the record, as I've done a few times before.
The danger might really be that anyone's characterization of "internal strength" is actually different from anyone else's, and that in our rush to be good social animals and conform to a consistent definition, we squash our understandings to fit with someone else's conception rather than embracing ambiguity and diversity in understanding and application. I would see reducing things down to a single terminology as an overall negative in terms of making us frightened of sharing, rather than free to share things that might not fit into a hivemind mentality. It may make us believe we already know things we don't by virtue of using the same term to describe very different nuances and so decrease the drive to learn new things.

If someone wants to call their thing "aiki", and someone wants to call their thing "internal strength", all the better, because 5 minutes in-person together will easily clear up the value of each amongst the proponents of each that 5 months, maybe 5 years, of discussion would never do, and usually ends up in sharing some beers rather than invocations of Godwin's law.

Fast forward to the reported scenario of people saying something to the effect of "I didn't know that I didn't know". One of the troubling parts to that particular scenario, in my personal opinion, is that I know from experience that it's very difficult for most people with habituated movement patterns in a martial-art to make the radical changeover to "move from the hara". What's pretty easy to do is to get a few here-and-there aspects of muscle-jin and sigh in self-satisfaction. Not that I knock it, if that's what people want to do, but I think that they should know what they don't know before they run into another "I didn't know that I didn't know situation" (and there is a big one looming).
But should it be difficult? Shouldn't it feel so ridiculously and obviously better to apply our body in a certain way that we simply want to give up our old habitual patterns, because once having tasted another way, the old patterns just feel silly? The nuance in my question there is of actually feeling the better way subjectively, rather than just trying to mechanically mimic some pattern of movements or exercises, thus pushing the difficulty of the issue onto getting that feeling... Or is it not that way?

I know I've reached a point where a lot of things have been thrust in front of me, and once having felt them, there was simply no going back, ever. They changed how I open doors, how I lift every day objects, how I walk or stand even, not even getting into what their martial applications were... And these ideas probably were not very deep on the rabbit hole scale you are implying.
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