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Old 06-23-2001, 02:01 PM   #1
Kami
Dojo: ShinToKai DoJo of AiKiDo
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Question Ranking

Does anyone know the present rank of the following people from USAF/WR :
Jack Arnold sensei, Pablo Vázquez sensei, and Nobuo Iseri sensei ?
Thank you for your help

"We are all teachers, and what we teach is what we need to learn, and so we teach it over and over again until we learn it".
Unknown author

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Old 06-23-2001, 03:40 PM   #2
jimbaker
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All three are listed as 6th Dans on their updated websites. Had they been promoted to 7th dan, it would have been announced in January, and there haven't been any such announcements.

There were at least four promotions to 7th dan in the US from the Aikikai Hombu: Konigsberg, Duran, Witt and Nadeau Senseis. I don't know if any of them were awarded Shihan ranking.

Jim Baker
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Old 06-23-2001, 05:48 PM   #3
Kami
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On promotions

[quote]Originally posted by jimbaker
[b]All three are listed as 6th Dans on their updated websites. Had they been promoted to 7th dan, it would have been announced in January, and there haven't been any such announcements.[END QUOTE]

KAMI : Sometimes the Shihan promote locally some people, who later are "autenticated" by the Aikikai Hombu. Such a case, if I'm not mistaken, has happened with Harvey Konigsberg Sensei, which has been promoted by Yamada Sensei but his ranking hasn't been autenticated by Hombu. It will be, I believe, in the next Kagami Biraki, in January 2002.

[quote][b]There were at least four promotions to 7th dan in the US from the Aikikai Hombu: Konigsberg, Duran, Witt and Nadeau Senseis. I don't know if any of them were awarded Shihan ranking.[END QUOTE]

KAMI : You're right, they weren't. But in the case of USAF/WR the three sensei were indicated as Shihan by that organization. I don't know if that title is to be recognized by Hombu. And the fact that they're still rokudan in their "updated" website does not mean much if their promotion, as it seems, has ocurred recently.
Anyway, thanks for your answer.

"We are all teachers, and what we teach is what we need to learn, and so we teach it over and over again until we learn it".
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Old 06-24-2001, 01:52 PM   #4
jimbaker
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I thought Harvy's rank was already registered with Hombu?

Actually, all of the yudansha ranks are "recommended" to Hombu dojo, which issues the certificates; the individual Shihan gives the test and sends the paperwork to Hombu. So you get your rank *through* your Shihan but *from* Hombu Dojo. Hombu, however, always approves what the Shihans send.

Shihan status, as a *teaching rank* is also only awarded by Hombu dojo. You're not a Shihan (as a teaching rank) unless Hombu has issued it. So I must assume that Chiba Shihan was announcing a "done deal".

As for the West Coast boys, all of their websites announce their Shihan awards, but nothing about a rank promotion. That's the reason I assumed they had not been given 7th dan.

However, we Aikidoist are falling waybehind the times. Several European Ninjas in the Bujinkan, under Grand Master Hatsumi have recently awarded several 13th dans!

Jim Baker
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Old 06-24-2001, 02:26 PM   #5
Kami
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Smile RANKING

Quote:
Originally posted by jimbaker
I thought Harvy's rank was already registered with Hombu?
KAMI : According to Peter Goldsbury Sensei, Chairman of the IAF, it hasn't yet.And I saw the latest Hombu list of promotions(january 2001) and his name isn't listed there.

Quote:
Shihan status, as a *teaching rank* is also only awarded by Hombu dojo. You're not a Shihan (as a teaching rank) unless Hombu has issued it. So I must assume that Chiba Shihan was announcing a "done deal".
KAMI : Or he may be following Saotome Sensei's example, who indicated his student, Dennis Hooker as a Shihan in his own organization, I believe that in its ancient meaning of "Exemplar Teacher", instead of as a "teaching rank".

Quote:
As for the West Coast boys, all of their websites announce their Shihan awards, but nothing about a rank promotion. That's the reason I assumed they had not been given 7th dan.
KAMI : I was informed, by another member of this list and of USAF, that the promotion to 7th Dan ocurred. That's why I'm trying to confirm that.

Quote:
However, we Aikidoist are falling way behind the times. Several European Ninjas in the Bujinkan, under Grand Master Hatsumi have recently awarded several 13th dans!
Jim Baker
KAMI : Well, I know nothing about the Bujinkan and its ranking system, so I'd rather not say anything about that.
Best regards and a good keiko

Last edited by Kami : 06-24-2001 at 02:32 PM.

"We are all teachers, and what we teach is what we need to learn, and so we teach it over and over again until we learn it".
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Old 06-24-2001, 03:20 PM   #6
jimbaker
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>KAMI : According to Peter Goldsbury Sensei, Chairman of the IAF, it hasn't yet.And I saw the latest Hombu list of promotions(january 2001) and his name isn't listed there. <

Perhaps it's in one of the later issues. I can't see Yamada Shihan announcing Harvey's promotion before approval from Hombu.

>KAMI : Or he may be following Saotome Sensei's example, who indicated his student, Dennis Hooker as a Shihan in his own organization, I believe that in its ancient meaning of "Exemplar Teacher", instead of as a "teaching rank".<

Chiba Shihan initiated the "teaching rank" system here in the US, so I don't believe he'd now be using the term in the way Saotome Shihan uses it. But I don't know for sure. Let me ask some of our "Left" Coast friends.

Anyway, congratulations to them all!
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Old 06-25-2001, 05:54 AM   #7
Kami
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RANKING

[quote]Originally posted by jimbaker
[b] [quote]KAMI : And I saw the latest Hombu list of promotions(january 2001) and his name isn't listed there.[END QUOTE]
Perhaps it's in one of the later issues. I can't see Yamada Shihan announcing Harvey's promotion before approval from Hombu.[END QUOTE]

KAMI : I don't want to be picky, Jim, but from what I know there's only one annual list from the Aikikai and announcement of promotions have been done BEFORE Hombu's approval. No problem in there. In Brazil, for instance, Wagner Bull Sensei was promoted to 6th Dan by Yamada Sensei BEFORE its approval by Hombu. It will also, probably, be listed in next year Kagami Biraki List.

[quote][b]>Chiba Shihan initiated the "teaching rank" system here in the US, so I don't believe he'd now be using the term in the way Saotome Shihan uses it. But I don't know for sure. Let me ask some of our "Left" Coast friends.[END QUOTE]

KAMI : Oops! Initiated the "teaching rank" in USA? Not extending to Shihan. Shihan, up to this year, was an exclusive indication of Hombu itself and there were NO non-japanese Shihan. So Chiba Sensei couldn't have "initiated the teaching rank" (at least concerning Shihan). The only "teaching ranks" available for indication to non-japanese were Fukushidoin and Shidoin, but definitely NOT Shihan.

Quote:
Anyway, congratulations to them all!
KAMI : One point I should make clear : I implicitly trust the Shihan's indication. So, if Yamada Sensei, Saotome Sensei or Chiba Sensei indicate someone for Shihan (either in the ancient meaning - "exemplar teacher" - or in the modern Aikikai meaning - "a teaching rank"), I believe they know what they are doing. And, of course, they are worthy of congratulations from us all.
Best

Last edited by Kami : 06-25-2001 at 05:57 AM.

"We are all teachers, and what we teach is what we need to learn, and so we teach it over and over again until we learn it".
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Old 06-25-2001, 09:37 AM   #8
jimbaker
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>KAMI : Oops! Initiated the "teaching rank" in USA? Not extending to Shihan. Shihan, up to this year, was an exclusive indication of Hombu itself and there were NO non-japanese Shihan. So Chiba Sensei couldn't have "initiated the teaching rank" (at least concerning Shihan). The only "teaching ranks" available for indication to non-japanese were Fukushidoin and Shidoin, but definitely NOT Shihan.<

Which is why I wrote "Teaching rank system". But bringing the system to the US was, so I've been told, Chiba Shihan's doing. The problems arose because there seemed to be a "glass ceiling" at the rank of Shidoin.

I believe the recent confusion over the title of "Shihan" arises, as Kami says, from its dual meaning of "Exemplar Teacher" and "Senior Teaching rank".

People who use it as a teaching rank object to it being applied automatically to teachers who don't have a certificate from the Aikikai Hombu. I've seen the term "Dai-Shihan" used by the AAA (and, I think, the ASU) as a way of honoring teachers without causing the confusion that the "shihan" title might engender.

As a side issue, it is considered improper to refer to yourself as either "Shihan" or even "Sensei", such as, "Hi I'm Baker Sensei". The title is one that the students use to honor their teacher. Yamada Shihan said that "Shihan", when used as "Exemplar Teacher", must come from the students own recognition of the qualities of their teacher and shouldn't be automatic.

Personally, I've met Shihans who's morals "weren't worth what a pig could spit" (to quote Sondheim) and are hardly an "exemplar" except as a model of how not to act. (And no, I won't say who.)

Jim Baker
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Old 06-25-2001, 09:55 AM   #9
jimbaker
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Sorry, that should have been "Shihandai" as the title that the AAA awarded.

Jim Baker
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Old 06-25-2001, 10:12 AM   #10
jimbaker
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Exclamation

Sorry, Kami!

I've just read Peter Goldsbury note on the Aikido Journal board:
http://www.aikidojournal.com/ubb/For...ML/000633.html

Kami's statements have been more correct than mine. There seems to be a lot more going on than I thought. I was basing my statements on the past behaviors of the various Shihan and there has been some shifting... well, a whole lot of shifting... going on.

Is it just me, or do a lot of these organizational changes seem to coincide with the various Shihan's inventing a weapons system?

Jim Baker
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Old 06-25-2001, 12:06 PM   #11
Kami
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Wink THE SHIHAN PROBLEM

Quote:
Originally posted by jimbaker
Kami's statements have been more correct than mine. There seems to be a lot more going on than I thought.
Jim Baker
KAMI : No problem, Jim! Next time, you'll be a lot more correct than I. And we'll both profit from it, don't you think so?

"We are all teachers, and what we teach is what we need to learn, and so we teach it over and over again until we learn it".
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Old 06-25-2001, 01:27 PM   #12
jimbaker
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Just as an endnote, Shibata Shihan is no longer affiliated with the USAF and has affiliated directly with the Aikikai Hombu.

The USAF-West website has removed his dojo from their pages and lists Shibata Shihan's seminars as "cancelled", with a big red line through them.

I suspect that a part of this might stem from some of the things discussed above but nobody is talking.

Jim Baker
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Old 06-25-2001, 02:12 PM   #13
Kami
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SHIHAN DAI

Quote:
Originally posted by jimbaker
Sorry, that should have been "Shihandai" as the title that the AAA awarded.
Jim Baker
kami : By the way, Shihan Dai means "In the place of the Shihan" or "Substitute for the Shihan" and not, as could be supposed, "Great Shihan" or something like that.
About Shibata Shihan : is it just me or something is happening within USAF?
Best

"We are all teachers, and what we teach is what we need to learn, and so we teach it over and over again until we learn it".
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Old 06-25-2001, 02:47 PM   #14
jimbaker
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Something appears to be happening within the USAF-West.

Just what, no one is saying.

Jim Baker
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Old 06-27-2001, 08:49 AM   #15
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Yep. It seems that some additional senior instructors and their dojo from the USAF Western region have resigned as well. I noticed their absence after looking over the Western region's revised listing of member dojo and certified instructors.

Robert Cronin
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Old 06-29-2001, 09:39 AM   #16
Keith
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Re: SHIHAN DAI

As it's used within the AAA policy manual, "Shihandai" is an "assistant shihan" (I'm not sure if that's the exact wording or not as the manual is at the dojo and I'm at work). It is a teaching rank given to members of the AAA National Teaching Committee. AAA uses teaching rank (jyoshu, fukushidoin, shidoin, sensei, shihandai, and shihan) based on attendance at Intructor's Seminars, hours of experience teaching, and commitment within the region and organization. Each teaching rank carries with it certain responsibilities and obligations relating to things like testing students for certain ranks. Currently there is only one Shihan in the AAA, and that is Toyoda Sensei.

So, at least as used in AAA, Shihandai is not a term of honor for people who should be (for lack of a better phrase) shihan. The term used for those people would be "shihan" or perhaps more accurately "AAA shihan".

Thanks,
Keith Engle

Quote:
Originally posted by Kami


kami : By the way, Shihan Dai means "In the place of the Shihan" or "Substitute for the Shihan" and not, as could be supposed, "Great Shihan" or something like that.
About Shibata Shihan : is it just me or something is happening within USAF?
Best
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Old 06-29-2001, 10:40 AM   #17
Jorge Garcia
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What's happening in Midwest?

I'm interested in what's happening in USAF West because this is obviously very significant but I was wondering, what's been happening in Midwest Aikido Federation? They have lost quite a few dojos in the last two years whose senseis were long time loyalists. Are the plans to continue with the "Committee" style of leadership" in the absence of a shihan? Has the leadership of USAF been proactive in helping Midwest? It seems that they were not well prepared for the transition after Tohei sensei's death. Does anyone know what the plan is?

Quote:
Originally posted by BC
Yep. It seems that some additional senior instructors and their dojo from the USAF Western region have resigned as well. I noticed their absence after looking over the Western region's revised listing of member dojo and certified instructors.

"It is the philosophy that gives meaning to the method of training."
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