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Old 07-15-2008, 02:35 PM   #76
DonMagee
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
Don
Asking would be a waste of time. There are levels of resistance that are profound and refined and not gross resistance. What do you think I was offering to do? I'm a gentleman. The former-is a trained skill that is demonstrable and obviously different than a 28 yr old going after a 90 yr old guy. Come on guy.
There are easy and small finite tests, larger tests, static and moving tests, and then while I am a lowly mudansha in Aikido I can fly and move quite well. So offering a shomen or a wrist grab, or just standing there and seeing if he can "suggest" I fall, can be a pleasant way to spend an afternoon for both parties. In fact I'd be willing to bet no one even breaks a sweat.
That type of training is empty and requires conditioned responses or it will not work. It is that simple.
I'm not saying he should be above testing. While I personally do not hold value in many of the tests aikidoka do, I am not apposed to testing instructors of any age. In that regard I have tested my judo instructor. He has done throw lines and uchi komi with me and I do not give him my balance, I do not let him throw me, i stand there. I do not however resist him attempts to throw me.

It comes down to how you define resistance. If i was to test someone's aikido with resistance, I would attack them (with permission of course). I would either attempt to use my abilities to leverage them into submission (strikes, throws, pins, submissions, etc) or I woudl define a drill to work in and use that frame work to attempt to accomplish whatever goal I was given (strike nage, take nage down, pin nage, etc) To me, resistance training is not a full force shomen strike to the gut, but rather a free form expression where I am told to strike you, but not given direction as to where to strike from, how to strike, when to strike, etc.

But I am off my point. My real point is you do not need to test an instructor to test his training methods. You can do it in two easy ways:

1) Practice his methods, try it out yourself in an alive situation and see how it holds or fails. In the case of something like this, you probably do not want to go this path (unless you have years to potentially waste). This is a great way to test a cardio workout, or a bjj technique or teaching method, not so good on this aiki stuff.

2) Find someone willing to (and a good representative of) that instructor and 'play' with them. I can tell a great deal about a persons training by how they react to a strike, or a grap, or even a single step towards them.

I am not a fan of the attempt to lock down a static technique during drills to test your partner. I wouldn't dream of for example not allowing my partner to armbar me during a armbar drill. That is the time to work on form and build up speed. The time to learn to adjust to resistance is during the alive parts. In the case of the armbar drill, we would switch to I have to pass his guard, he has to submit me or sweep. Now he can see how that armbar fits into a persons real, and not what we think a person would do, reaction.

and Ron,
I'm not injured, just stuck at work (which is basically the same thing )

- Don
"If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough" - Albert Einstein
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Old 07-15-2008, 02:39 PM   #77
Ron Tisdale
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

@ Don,

Hey, ain't it great to be employed though?!?!

Best,
Ron

Ron Tisdale
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"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
St. Bonaventure (ca. 1221-1274)
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Old 07-15-2008, 02:40 PM   #78
ChrisMoses
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

Quote:
Shaun Ravens wrote: View Post
Hi Josh,

SO GLAD YOU ASKED!!!!! the simple answer is, "NO!" - I would say that your conclusion is based upon a "Western minded" method of analysis.
That darn Josh and his Western mindset, if only he could be exposed to some Eastern thinking... (If you know Josh's background, you know why this is teh funnay).

Quote:
Shaun Ravens wrote: View Post
This is not a case where we compare when I make you cry by hitting you and you make me cry by hitting me harder. We know where that will lead us.
I don't need to speak for Dan, but this simply isn't what he's talking about.

Quote:
Shaun Ravens wrote: View Post
This is more of a case where you want to hit me, but I make you cry from loving you. Where might that lead us?
Can you go into more detail about what your talking about here (in real physical terms)? I'm having a hard time imagining how this can happen in an Aikido scenario. I've had a lot of people try to describe to me what they were doing in terms like these, but they were always using subtle strategies and dynaics that had nothing to do with my happy place. This is not a meant as a strawman or rhetorical question, I'm trying to understand what you're saying here.

Chris Moses
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Old 07-15-2008, 02:54 PM   #79
Dunken Francis
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

.... I think to really comment with a degree of conviction I'd like to have first-hand experience and "feel" what's going on here.,,

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Old 07-15-2008, 03:26 PM   #80
DH
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

Quote:
Christian Moses wrote: View Post
That darn Josh and his Western mindset, if only he could be exposed to some Eastern thinking... (If you know Josh's background, you know why this is teh funnay).
Hi Chris
I didn't want to out him I just died laughing He is the wifebeater t -shirt ,rolled up lucky strikes sort of guy though itdn't he now?
I'll make sure I bring it up when I see him this week
..."No Josh see, this is an Asian sort of mindset, you might want to consider the bridge between India and China and Japan" ...over...and over...and over
WAAAITT what am I saying. He'll start talking about it. Never mind.

Last edited by DH : 07-15-2008 at 03:32 PM.
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Old 07-15-2008, 03:48 PM   #81
Thomas Campbell
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

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Dan Harden wrote: View Post
Hi Chris
I didn't want to out him I just died laughing He is the wifebeater t -shirt ,rolled up lucky strikes sort of guy though itdn't he now?
[snip]
Rolled up sleeves with a packet of "Double Happiness" acupuncture needles.
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Old 07-15-2008, 04:33 PM   #82
Josh Lerner
 
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

Quote:
Shaun Ravens wrote: View Post
Hi Josh,

SO GLAD YOU ASKED!!!!! the simple answer is, "NO!" - I would say that your conclusion is based upon a "Western minded" method of analysis. This is not a case where we compare when I make you cry by hitting you and you make me cry by hitting me harder. We know where that will lead us. This is more of a case where you want to hit me, but I make you cry from loving you. Where might that lead us?
Thank you for making my point for me! If I wanted to hit you, but you made me cry from loving me, it means that you were better at loving me than I was at wanting to hit you. Maybe that's because I didn't really want to hit you - I just wanted attention, or some sort of human connection.

But what if you weren't so good at loving me - maybe your love was tainted without you realizing it by self-concern, or judgement, or was conditional? And if I really just wanted to hit you? Then maybe I would be better at hitting you than you were at loving me, and then I made you cry.

In my Western-minded way of looking at it, it still comes down to who is, in some sense, better at what they do. And both things require experience or training, and you grow in your skills.

Quote:
Shaun Ravens wrote: View Post
Now imagine what it would look like if we tried as hard as we could to not fight at all. Instantly there would also be peace, peace of a very different sort.
I don't understand your point about both of us trying as hard as we could not to fight. Sure, that's a very different kind of peace. One that wouldn't require any martial training at all to uphold, in fact. I'm personally not very interested in training in an art that allows me to stay peaceful only in the face of an attacker who is trying very hard not to fight with me.

Quote:
Shaun Ravens wrote: View Post
You see, while you may have viewed what I was talking about as opposites skills, they are not skills which are out to produce the same result at all. This is a categoric shift in thinking produced by the way of Aiki. I don't think that is in any way the same as what Dan is talking about when he talks about AIkido, or Aiki...do and how that relates to Power and Connection from his view of things.

.
Well, I would say that they are both out to produce the same result in the sense that the result is that you keep yourself (or other people) safe in the face of aggression. How you are doing that may be categorically different, or it may not, but either way it's still going to be a skill that you need to deepen through practice and experience, just like gaining internal power is.

And as for the rest of you . . . You know that I am a strictly materialistic Cartesian dualist who doesn't go in for all that Buddho-Daoist stuff.

Not that there's anything wrong with that, of course. Some of my best friends are Eastern-minded.

Josh
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Old 07-15-2008, 04:56 PM   #83
rob_liberti
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

Well, I think I can relate a bit to something Shaun was talking about here.

I remember visiting a friend in a different dojo (under a different shihan who has/had more of a violent repuation than others).

I was just happily doing basic waza and I didn't do the exact perscribed ukemi. I was just really into what was going on, and I was so joyful about being there and doing that thing we call aikido together that the guy who typically would try to break you in half for challenging his waza by not going exactly where he wanted you to go, just kind of wispered (take another backstep before bailing out) - and it was one of those absolutely quiet training dojos.

So I adjusted and all was well in the universe. After class that guy - under ranked sandan at the time - told me that he was a bit suprised himself that things went that way. He had been working on really punishing anyone who didn't do the "safe" thing, and was a little suprised that we had such an interchange.

All I could think was - well that's because what *I* practice is overwhelming people with my joy of training - and it worked - yet again.

I remember training with Gleason sensei and really opening up my feeling to him so I would stop being so suprised by where I was going to be randomly thrown. After a while, I think he had been going through some dark time on the home front, I noticed that he could show up to teach and be obviously all pissed off. After about 3 ukemis - I would have concentrated my joy of aikido so much that he would start to laugh and smile. I was like - WOW this stuff is powerful - I'm a master. Oh my gosh, then later I realized that this worked both ways, that the uke could feel how the nage was feeling a bit too. Man THAT SUCKED. I had to face the fact that I could no longer be a teacher who outwardly was friendly to a student who I didn't like too much - because if they trained the way I wanted to train - they would absoultely know. I thought - WOW THIS SUCKS - I HAVE TO CHANGE. And I did. I made a lot more progress, and I got a lot less fake with people. So now I'm blunt and honest - and if people don't like it that's perfectly fine.

Anyway if this has nothing to do with what Shaun was talking about then sorry for the interruption.

Rob
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Old 07-15-2008, 05:44 PM   #84
Aikibu
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
Hi WIlliam
No thunderdome exists except in YOUR mind.
We're talking training method here guy...not fighting.
I'm starting to believe you about the surfbaord hitting your head too often :-)
No worries Dan. All in good fun. My articulation sucks.

I am still trying to wrap around the idea that somehow a TV Show of Abe Sensei has any relevance to the discussion how good his Aikido actually is...

William Hazen
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Old 07-15-2008, 06:12 PM   #85
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

Mr. Hazen,

there's the Watanabe Sensei one as well. That one it's not a tv show
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Old 07-15-2008, 07:07 PM   #86
Aikibu
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

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André Fiúza wrote: View Post
Mr. Hazen,

there's the Watanabe Sensei one as well. That one it's not a tv show
So? Your point is?

William Hazen
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Old 07-15-2008, 07:52 PM   #87
eyrie
 
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

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William Hazen wrote: View Post
I am still trying to wrap around the idea that somehow a TV Show of Abe Sensei has any relevance to the discussion how good his Aikido actually is...
I don't think that is the issue here. As Dan pointed out, it's not a question of Abe's skills or abilities, but rather what purpose does this sort of ukemi response serve? Martially? Practically?.... Which I think is a valid question and pertinent to the topic.

On the one hand, I can appreciate George's views regarding sensitivity, but OTOH, Dan's point is equally valid - i.e. rather than ingrain a conditioned/"sensitized" reflex that causes you to "jump", why not train to respond differently - changing with it and re-vectoring the attack?

Whilst I do understand the potential practicalities of eliciting a predictable physiological response by simply "waving the hand", IMHE, the degree of such response is usually quite subtle and not of the magnitude demonstrated in the previous videos.

Ignatius
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Old 07-15-2008, 08:05 PM   #88
FiuzA
 
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

Quote:
William Hazen wrote: View Post
So? Your point is?

William Hazen
My point is that we are discussing these "waving around" techniques. It doesn't matter whether it is Abe Sensei, Watanabe Sensei or any other Sensei. You say that the Abe Sensei video its just a TV show, but that's not the case on Watanabe Sensei's demo, for instance.

So this videos do have relevance to discuss these "strange" approaches to Aikido, IMO.

Or Watanabe Sensei's demo only purpose is to amuse the spectators? (as you say it happens on the TV show case).

If it is, my bad then

Best

PS: i know the topic title has Abe Sensei on it, but can't we widen up the discussion? That's my point.

Last edited by FiuzA : 07-15-2008 at 08:10 PM.
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Old 07-15-2008, 09:49 PM   #89
Fred Little
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

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Ignatius Teo wrote: View Post
I don't think that is the issue here. As Dan pointed out, it's not a question of Abe's skills or abilities, but rather what purpose does this sort of ukemi response serve? Martially? Practically?.... Which I think is a valid question and pertinent to the topic.
Ignatius, good fellow:

The argument Dan is making is actually quite silly and really not worth the validation of the many responses it has gotten. Abe Sensei and his several uke knew quite well that they were putting on a show for a comedy/variety show. The following discussion makes about as much sense as drawing conclusions about Yip Man's Wing Chun training by reviewing Bruce Lee's fight scenes as Kato in the Green Hornet.

In fact, it is quite likely that the reason Dan won't post any video of himself doing anything is precisely because of his inner certainty that he will be mocked and called a transparent fraud who is teaching nonsense of dubious value and hounded about the subject to no good purpose by people who neither have eyes to see what he is showing nor ears to hear his sincere explanation.

That some individuals of good reputation might chime in and insist that he is an diligent martial artist of great skill and sensitivity whose jocular presentation of deep principles has been thoroughly misunderstood will make no difference. Even if they are right regarding the broad strokes of the matter, one or another of them will introduce one or another unfortunate particular phrase that stands at some variance from what he's really doing, and that will lead to a whole other line of idiotic wrangling. And it will go on and on.

So Dan chooses to let no one see what he is doing unless they are working with him one-on-one in circumstances over which he has complete control, and that's quite understandable.

Just what the irony is in this I will leave it to others to unpack, but I will say that it would be outrageously funny if it weren't so deeply sad.

Best regards,

FL
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Old 07-15-2008, 10:03 PM   #90
Ellis Amdur
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Do air cookies provide a minimum daily requirement of nourishment?

Once upon a time, before some of you young'uns were even born, I trained at the Aikido Headquarters, and I was a very popular uke for the shihan - I was (still am) tall, at 2 meters, and I was very --------- sensitive. Made people look good. I could respond to Watanabe when he made one of his, ah, ... - gestures -, made Doshu look like a titan by giving a straight arm out for him to crunch his wakigatame, gave up a relaxed arm and dived over it so Arikawa, Masuda, and Chiba wouldn't break it during their attempts to do so on shihonage, managed to run fast enough to keep ahold of Tada sensei, when he was doing one of his huge swirling treks across half the dojo, like a meteor run amuck, and managed to maintain finger-print contact with Osawa sensei as he etched living zen through the air. I could hang (on) with the Iwama guys while they did "weight lifting" with the uke. I even managed not to irritate Yamaguchi too much, even though I never mastered the wet towel flip-flop. For a period of about a year (my active time at the Aikikai), pretty much every shihan used me to demonstrate technique.
In that interim, I joined Araki-ryu. First day, my teacher puts a nasty joint lock on my wrist and I hit the deck. He looked at me, puzzled, and said, "What are you doing down there?"
"Taking ukemi," I replied.
"But I haven't done anything to you yet," he riposted
"But you were going to," I replied.
"So don't let me," he concluded.

On a related matter, I don't know if I'm the only one who sees it this way.
Rolling Stones - "I can't get no satisfaction" - the most barbaric yawp of adolescent need ever howled. It's kind of disappointing to hear it on an ad for "feminine hygiene spray" or a lawn mower.
Beethoven's 9th - testament to the artistic spirit that is unkillable - how about an endless loop of a passage while waiting to talk to someone in the IRS
Rollo May - a profoundly dignified pioneer of existential psychology - books on responsibility, fundamental anxiety in the face of death. I'd have hated to see him as a Dr. Phil.

Everybody's got their reasons, and everybody's got their life. And I fully believe that Abe sensei is all that he's said to be, by Shaun and by another friend who has felt what he can do.
But I don't like art demeaned.
But I do not get participating in a television show that is, in it's nature, japing, loud, disrespectful, and stupid - and doing there techniques that lend themselves to further japing. I did a little acting in Japan, and I told my agent that I would 1. Never rape or molest a Japanese female for the camera 2. Never make fun of budo 3. Never lend myself to a role that made white people out to be too crude and ignorant to understand the marvels of Japanese culture. . . . .I said that I did a little acting. None after that - they didn't have roles for me, then.

So maybe it's just me, but having seen that video show before, my objection is not about the air cookie throws, though I come down on Dan's perspective in this - that's just personal interest. It's simply aesthetic. It was an unpleasant thing to watch idiots make howling noises in the face of an old man of some attainment, and he agreed to let it happen. And in so doing, I do not think a message showing the real potential of the training he does was conveyed.
Best

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Old 07-15-2008, 10:19 PM   #91
Upyu
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

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Fred Little wrote: View Post
Abe Sensei and his several uke knew quite well that they were putting on a show for a comedy/variety show.
Er... I've been to Abe's dojo, and trust me, the Ukemi that his students put on even without the cameras rolling would win the Oscar for overacting

I feel pretty comfortable with saying that because I got to see the reaction of one of his long time students reaction of my own stuff when we had a bit of private time. That kind of overacting just gets ingrained :-p
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Old 07-15-2008, 11:28 PM   #92
eyrie
 
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

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Fred Little wrote: View Post
The argument Dan is making is actually quite silly and really not worth the validation of the many responses it has gotten.
Fred... my good man...

Seeing another's perspective is not the same as taking sides. I'm sure Dan is quite capable of standing up for himself, and certainly doesn't need me to defend him. However, casting aspersions as to what Dan can/can't do or whether what he "teaches" is/is not worthless... is completely unnecessary, if not ungentlemanly.

Whether Abe's ukes were hamming it up for the cameras is irrelevant. If they were, then it perhaps diminishes the man's real abilities and the art being portrayed. If they didn't, then a fair and logical question would be why and wherefore such training methods.

Developing sensitivity is one thing... ingrained and conditioned reflex is quite another... none of which has anything to do with making someone look good on/off camera.... which some people might call "acting".

Ignatius
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Old 07-16-2008, 05:49 AM   #93
Demetrio Cereijo
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Re: Do air cookies provide a minimum daily requirement of nourishment?

Quote:
Ellis Amdur wrote: View Post
Everybody's got their reasons, and everybody's got their life. And I fully believe that Abe sensei is all that he's said to be, by Shaun and by another friend who has felt what he can do.
But I don't like art demeaned.
But I do not get participating in a television show that is, in it's nature, japing, loud, disrespectful, and stupid - and doing there techniques that lend themselves to further japing.
I can't agree more, however when I see this kind of techniques not in TV humor shows but in "official" events like the Watanabe S. clip mentioned before or this one of Takeda Yoshinobu S., I can't figure what the reasons for high ranked Aikikai Hombu instructors to demonstrate these kind of err... pavlovian aikido skills in these kind of events.

Well, maybe developing pavlovian skills is what high level aikido is about, not about "power" or "connection" or "harmony" but old school "headology".

OTOH, about Abe Sensei. Someone pointed O Sensei as a possible source of Abe Sensei skills, however I think the influence of Kawatsura Bonji via Kenzo Futaki's Misogi no Renseikai has some relevance here.

PS.

This discussion about "no touch throws" reminded me the following story told by Adam Alexander in his Iwama Monogatari:

We had someone from Tokyo come one Saturday to train with us over the weekend. This guy was very big, and I think he was a professional wrestler. Saito-sensei was off traveling somewhere and Hirosawa-sensei taught the Saturday night class.
I was in Tokyo on business and missed the class, but I came back later and heard about what happened. It seems that the visitor acted inappropriately toward Hirosawa-sensei during the class, and then went off to go to sleep.
The word about this spread surprisingly fast. Inagaki-sensei came by and was very angry. He showed his disapproval by smashing a steel bucket into a small ball with his fists. He also appointed himself to teach the Sunday morning class.
For the only time during the ten years I was in Iwama, the dojo was packed with spectators for the Sunday morning class. There were mothers with their little children, my wife was there, everyone wanted to see what would happen when Inagaki-sensei got the visitor on the mat.
The visitor woke up, looked at the spectacle in the dojo, apparently got the message, and quietly took off for the train station. We were all disappointed that the show we anticipated did not take place.
That was probably the smartest thing the visitor ever did.


Moral of the story: Context is everything.

Regards.

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Old 07-16-2008, 06:42 AM   #94
Fred Little
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

Quote:
Ignatius Teo wrote: View Post
Fred... my good man...
However, casting aspersions as to what Dan can/can't do or whether what he "teaches" is/is not worthless... is completely unnecessary, if not ungentlemanly.
Precisely.

That is why I used what is essentially an "If a then b."

For example:

"If Jake goes walking in a bad neighborhood at night with $100 he just took out of the ATM in his hand, then somebody is going to try to take it from him."

Jake may very well be able to kick the sorry ass of anyone who tries, and the statement of the inevitable is not an endorsement of the attempt to take it.

"It's very likely that the reason Jake doesn't go walking in bad neighborhoods with a wad of cash in his hand is that the time and effort involved in defending himself against the inevitable robbery attempt and subsequently justifying his actions to the police really makes it an energy sink that he would just as soon avoid."

Unlike the hypothetical Jake, I've met Dan, and really don't want to think about what would happen if he inadvertently ended up in the wrong part of town facing a knucklehead who thought he had found himself an easy mark walking away from an ATM machine.

Like all analogies, this is imperfect and falls apart if you try to push it too far or nail it down too tightly, but anyone who isn't simply looking for an argument should get my drift.

Best,

FL
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Old 07-16-2008, 07:44 AM   #95
Peter Goldsbury
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

Hello Demetrio,

I did not attend the 2008 All-Japan Demonstration. I judged that attending was not worth the money or the time--correctly as it seems.

I watched the video and was rather stunned . Mr Takeda was a student of Yamaguchi Seigo Sensei--I think this is one of the main reasons why he is regarded as such an inspiring aikido shihan. Like Yasuno, Tissier, Endo, he is one of the deshi who have 'mastered' Yamaguchi Sensei's aikido. However, I am certain that Yamaguchi Sensei would never have given a demonstration in which he causes several ukes to fall over merely by raising his arm. I may be wrong, but I do not think that O Sensei ever did this, either. I know about the controversial 'jo trick', but his deshi were actually holding on to the jo: they were not several feet away when they fell over.

You should know that I have repeatedly discussed the content of the All-Japan Demonstration with Doshu and each time I have been told that I 'misunderstand' the point of the demonstration. It is not meant to have any 'teaching' function; rather, it is a 'gathering of Japanese aikido tribes and a celebration of their dominant myths' (these are my terms, not Doshu's).

So, in my opinion, the demonstration is intended to celebrate the history of aikido in Japan and also to reinforce certain types of group consciousness about aikido in Japan. It is not really intended for 'foreign' consumption (the foreign participants that participate are presented rather like unusual exhibits at a Japanese aikido zoo) ; rather it is designed to celebrate and reinforce the aikido kokutai, under the benevolent rule of Doshu .

As an example, you trained in Iwama for many years. How often did you practice with Isoyama Sensei, especially his classic kata-guruma? On the videos Saito Sensei always did this in reverse. However, until a few years ago, before Isoyama Sensei became 'erai' and gave speeches at the demonstration, he always appeared at the All-Japan Demonstration, with chosen uke, and did the required waza. I know his favored uke and he trained severely, in order to take 'good' ukemi. He can no longer take ukemi because his body cannot take the punishment .

Nowadays, the top shihans at the All-Japan Demonstration always use young 'pure' university students to take ukemi (except for the shihans from the Hombu's teaching department). Why? They are young and flexible and are taught to have no clue whatever about blocking a technique from a shihan . The whole purpose of their aikido life is to take 'prefect' ukemi .

Finally, you expressed surprise at the presence of smilies in a previous post of mine. So I have edited this post and made up up for earlier defects .

As always, best wishes,

PAG

PS. I will probably not use smilies again for another ten years or so.

Last edited by Peter Goldsbury : 07-16-2008 at 07:51 AM.

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Old 07-16-2008, 07:54 AM   #96
Josh Reyer
 
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

Quote:
Peter A Goldsbury wrote: View Post
PS. I will probably not use smilies again for another ten years or so.
It was well worth it, sir.

Josh Reyer

The lyf so short, the crafte so longe to lerne,
Th'assay so harde, so sharpe the conquerynge...
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Old 07-16-2008, 08:00 AM   #97
Peter Goldsbury
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

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It was well worth it, sir.


PAG

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Old 07-16-2008, 08:04 AM   #98
raul rodrigo
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

I was about to post the same link to the Youtube video of Takeda shihan at the 2008 All Japan embutaikai. But Demetrio beat me to it. I too was stunned. In previous videos of Takeda at the All Japan, he would always take down ukes with a very light touch, so light that some could question whether in fact ukes were "tanking" for him or there was some real power in the waza. But this was the first time I ever saw him wander into Watanabe territory. As Prof. Goldsbury mentioned, this is not the kind of demo that Takeda's teacher Yamaguchi would ever have given. Undoubtedly Takeda was making some kind of point about his aikido. But I'm afraid that whatever that point is, it is beyond me. Would anyone have any ideas what that point might be? Connection, receptivity, or the fact that "the Force has a strong influence on the weak minded?"

Last edited by raul rodrigo : 07-16-2008 at 08:18 AM.
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Old 07-16-2008, 08:15 AM   #99
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

I think video is a bad move for many aspects of the martial arts. That judgment is in line with an apparently rather large section of budo teachers; both gendai and Koryu, who obviously feel the same way. All too often it detracts from someone’s very real abilities.
Interesting that many -probably most- share the same views of this particular type of display of aikido.
Pre-conditioned reflex, to win and control is laudable.
Pre-conditioned reflex to fall down is laughable.

As Ellis noted with his going from aikido to Koryu–pre-conditioned reflex, particularly to choose to fall down as a response to either tame or even non existent input- should be avoided by anyone in a serious martial pursuit. While he was admonished from the teacher “Why did you fall down, I haven’t down anything to you yet?” And I think the best response is from the top down. Maybe it should be followed by “Here is a way to remain on your feet and neutralize everything I am about to do to you. Now let’s try another.” And so on and so on…till you made a martial artist that is potent on either side of the food chain. In the end it works very well when you do what I have done-go to places or meet people where you have no control over the outcome, and no one is interested in cooperating with you in any way.

That said, I agree with Ellis about demeaning the arts. That’s why many teachers are either extremely cautious or extremely calculating about what they put out there. Were one to assume that all teachers who DO put video out there are cautious or calculating- it then makes a hell of a statement about what we are seeing.
Were they to be casual about it?
Even more so

Last edited by DH : 07-16-2008 at 08:29 AM.
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Old 07-16-2008, 08:46 AM   #100
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Re: Seiseki Abe Sensei video....whats going on here?

The funny thing here is that I find Takeda sensei's and Dan's training approaches very compatible.

Takeda sensei's physical ikkyo and iriminage are awesome. What do you do when the hardest techniques are mastered? Take them to MMA - okay if you like that. If you are a teacher and don't know how to best teach that kind of physical structure/mental intentions directly then maybe you work on extending the connection to the point that your students start practicing some of their lines of intention.

With Takeda sensei, I've seen personally withnessed his approach to teaching to take things to an exteme (Dan does too by the way). I will say training like that - okay not so far he wasn't touching me at all - but continuing to stretch out toward him as I fell away actaully helped me quite a bit with getting my mental intentions "strengthened" (not sure if that is the correct word!) when working with Dan.

As a side note - that actaully seems tangenially related - I would like to address this:
Quote:
Fred Little wrote: View Post
So Dan chooses to let no one see what he is doing unless they are working with him one-on-one in circumstances over which he has complete control, and that's quite understandable.
I just want to talk about this part: "he has complete control". I want to disagree with this because I believe that Dan goes to BJJ and other MMA places and works out with them playing by their rules - whatever they may be.

On the other hand, I also agree with the phrase "he has complete control". It reminds me of a story when some HVAC guy walked into the dojo (I rent space) and demanded my attention while I was teaching yelling to me. The conversation went like this:
HVAC guy: "ARE YOU IN CHARGE HERE?!" - (I stopped teaching)
Me: "Yes." (I started approaching him to help if I could).
HVAC guy: "DO YOU OWN THE BUILDING?!"
Me: "No."
HVAC guy: "THEN YOU ARE NOT IN CHARGE HERE!!!"
Me: "I'm in charge everywhere I go." I said it very softly. At this point I was standing in front of him. And he chose to calm down.

I used the things that I value from training with Dan AS WELL AS the things I value from training with Takeda sensei.

YMMV - Rob

Last edited by rob_liberti : 07-16-2008 at 08:49 AM.
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