I read the book in Japanese too last year and I do respect Sagawa Sensei and Mr. Kimura (whose other book I also ordered from Amazon Japan later the same year).
Yet I've been wondering if we'll ever be able to transcend the mysticism beyond aiki? Aiki is what aiki is or would be, right? If such a thing exists it does exist within its quite normal relevant range,or, to put it more plainly, there shouldn't be anything exceptional about it. Even if it's something not everyone will understand it is still a natural, normal and regular phenomenon.
I'm quite happy with Shioda Sensei's straight line, concentration (shuchuryoku), kokyuryoku, etc. It's plain and simple (user-friendly
) and it works just as it should.
I guess Sokaku Takeda Sensei was really the one who understood aiki of his family ryu, all the other respected Sensei did some great research but I doubt that aiki should be mystified to the point it is now. It's still within the laws of this same old Universe
...BTW the stories about all those relations and interactions between various Sensei are definitely interesting. Oos!
It's only a mystery to those who don't have it. While there are many ways to express or cause aiki to occur, they all start from a connected and trained body. IME, most of what is "called" aiki is overt and unnecessary body movement largely to create unneeded displacement in the uke. Much of what remains are just "techniques" which are almost always just sophisticated jujutsu, with little aiki to be seen. Even when you see some Japanese teachers with aiki-to include Aikido and Daito ryu-there movements are still largely limited and rather narrow in scope. Particularly with the "one-step kata" crowd. Until you break out and begin to use it in free flow continuous non-cooperative movement you will never get to a deeper level, burned in the body,
If you read Sagawa; you now know what we have been talking about here for almost fifteen years...Aiki is in the body,