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Old 10-12-2010, 12:12 AM   #26
Janet Rosen
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Re: Japanezsing

In your position, I would search for other dojos in travel distance, visit and observe, then decide....hoping you do have alternatives!

Janet Rosen
http://www.zanshinart.com
"peace will enter when hate is gone"--percy mayfield
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Old 10-12-2010, 01:33 AM   #27
Josh Reyer
 
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Re: Japanezsing

Quote:
Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
It is possible to be more Japanese than the Japanese.
Really, it's not. But it's possible to be damn annoyed to have to "do as the Japanese do" when not in Japan or with Japanese people. Few things bug me like being called "Josh-san" or being bowed to when I'm in "American-mode".

Josh Reyer

The lyf so short, the crafte so longe to lerne,
Th'assay so harde, so sharpe the conquerynge...
- Chaucer
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Old 10-12-2010, 06:37 AM   #28
carina reinhardt
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Re: Japanezsing

Quote:
Anonymous User wrote: View Post
. I've invested my time and money to this class. I have made friends in this dojo. Please understand my deference to my personal concerns, and seriousness, I hold for this matter.

The question posed more often to my question, is referring to quality. I don't know. I have nothing to weight technical adeptness against. What I see now as a novice I may judge wrongly, either way. With this in mind, I would like to direct to teaching methodology. That of which in my terms and understanding seems more accessible as the object I am able to answer at my level. So I shall, I don't see a connection in relation to the issues of Japanezing in my dojo and the quality of Aikido. Is the teacher's knowledge about and can't transmit information in a reasonable fashion that accelerates learning? The teacher is very intelligent and well learned in the ways of Japan, that is evident to many situations inside and outside the dojo. The Sensei is not Japanese, as previously indicated, but has a command of Japanese. The Sensei has extensive exposure and access to the country and the people for many years; not Aikido related. Is the Sensei good. I don't know. Is the Sensei highly intelligent and knows their shit when it comes to Japanese...yes. Japophile is an understatement. IMO the Sensei has an obsession for the Japanese.

Do I leave the dojo, right the Sensei off as a moron and more on from there? Well that is a facilitating answer that quickly arose to apparent. Haste makes waste. Therefore, other considerations must be considered. That is why came here. Any meaningful help is greatly appreciated.
I know this is very serious for you and understand you don't want to look for another dojo, not now.
You can wait and hope that time will bring a solution, either you will adapt to the japanezsing or wait, perhaps it is only a short time madness from you sensei, there is also a third option you speak sincerely with your sensei( I don't know if this is valid for you, you must think calm and the necessary time about it)
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Old 10-12-2010, 06:39 AM   #29
WilliB
Dojo: Minato Aikikai
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Re: Japanezsing

Quote:
Joshua Reyer wrote: View Post
Really, it's not. But it's possible to be damn annoyed to have to "do as the Japanese do" when not in Japan or with Japanese people. Few things bug me like being called "Josh-san" or being bowed to when I'm in "American-mode".
Why so serious? As far as I can see, the OP gets double value -- Aikido instruction plus comic entertainment. Whats to complain about? Just relax and enjoy.
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Old 10-12-2010, 06:47 AM   #30
Keith Larman
Location: California
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Re: Japanezsing

To the OP, the problem is that no one can evaluate the quality of the instruction from written word on a forum. For all we know it is top notch with some folk going through a phase. Or it could be a bit of exaggeration on your part combined with a low tolerance for anything Japanese-esque. We are going by what you type which is of course filtered through your experiences.

Best we can do is shrug, suggest you look around, and wish you luck. With an anonymous post about an unknown school, what more do you expect?

I don't have much patience with places that go overboard with the western version of Japanese culture myself. That said, good training is good training. It is all about balance. But we can't balance two unknown quantities for you.

Good luck.

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Old 10-12-2010, 06:49 AM   #31
Marc Abrams
Dojo: Aikido Arts of Shin Budo Kai/ Bedford Hills, New York
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Re: Japanezsing

Quote:
Anonymous User wrote: View Post
In all due respect, I appreciate humor in this situation, but concerning the distractive mocking, I am not laughing. I've invested my time and money to this class. I have made friends in this dojo. Please understand my deference to my personal concerns, and seriousness, I hold for this matter.

The question posed more often to my question, is referring to quality. I don't know. I have nothing to weight technical adeptness against. What I see now as a novice I may judge wrongly, either way. With this in mind, I would like to direct to teaching methodology. That of which in my terms and understanding seems more accessible as the object I am able to answer at my level. So I shall, I don't see a connection in relation to the issues of Japanezing in my dojo and the quality of Aikido. Is the teacher's knowledge about and can't transmit information in a reasonable fashion that accelerates learning? The teacher is very intelligent and well learned in the ways of Japan, that is evident to many situations inside and outside the dojo. The Sensei is not Japanese, as previously indicated, but has a command of Japanese. The Sensei has extensive exposure and access to the country and the people for many years; not Aikido related. Is the Sensei good. I don't know. Is the Sensei highly intelligent and knows their shit when it comes to Japanese...yes. Japophile is an understatement. IMO the Sensei has an obsession for the Japanese.

Do I leave the dojo, right the Sensei off as a moron and more on from there? Well that is a facilitating answer that quickly arose to apparent. Haste makes waste. Therefore, other considerations must be considered. That is why came here. Any meaningful help is greatly appreciated.
1) Relax!
2) Go and visit other dojos near you. If you are allowed, pay a mat fee and try a class at each dojo.
3) Relax!
4) After visiting other dojos, ponder the situation and ask yourself if you are comfortable enough at the current dojo, would like a temporary change, would like a permanent change,.... You should have enough awareness by now of what you like and don't like about training in Aikido (particularly after visiting other dojos).
5) Choose wisely Grasshopper !

Nobody is making fun of you. Most of us have invested a tremendous amount of time and money into our training, but can stand back and realize that life is serious so don't take it that seriously!

Good Luck!

Marc Abrams
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Old 10-12-2010, 07:53 AM   #32
"Annoyed"
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Re: Japanezsing

Update: Roughly another month has passed and I am still at the dojo dealing with the ever increasingly annoyance (my personal feeling) of the dojo's perpetuation toward turning Japanese. Soon after I came here for guidance, it was indicated to me quite verbosely, in a strong Japaneseque manner it was time to follow in lock step. This was not the actual phrasing, but that is the gist of it. To humor them and not be "the nail that sticks up" I surrendered to some of the objectionable behaviors.

I want to thank all those many replies, the Sensei's and dojo behavior is not acceptable, which reinforces my assumptions.

I am wondering now if I speak to the Sensei directly in regard to the new dojo obsession? If so, how? What advice can be given on my approach to a Sensei who has gone Japanese ren-fair, turning the dojo into a spectacle?

How do I say, "Sensei, this Japanese thing you're doing is getting absurd. And it is a bit much, not to mention it is highly distracting to me learning Aikido now?" How do I say correctly to the Senesi, "It isn't that I haven't enjoyed learning from you (up to this point). I have been here a while and have made some friends and people I like and are comfortable doing Aikido with, and I have learned many things. It's all good to this point. And I am hesitant to go somewhere else. I don't want to risk starting all over again somewhere else with someone else. I have equity in this dojo, and have made investments here. No complaints, but this Japanezing of things is really unbecoming, and it is giving me cause to consider quitting the class. Something I don't necessarily want to do." Any advice.

Take in consideration upon providing any wisdom in this matter, I am younger than the Sensei, and our relationship is strictly student and teacher. We don't speak casually or personally to each other. We are not BFFs. I would call it more of a professional relationship if any.

Thanks in advance

---real quick, it was my earlier assumption that the Sensei being well versed in knowledge of the Japanese and Japan doesn't come from a Japanese Aikido source. I am not sure of that, I could be wrong. I assumed the Sensei's knowledge is derived from other sources and experiences than Aikido. I made the assumption because of never hearing of any Japanese Aikido contacts or experiences mentioned in my presence.
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Old 10-12-2010, 07:54 AM   #33
Hellis
Dojo: Ellis Schools of Traditional Aikido
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Re: Japanezsing

Anonymous

You are right to treat this matter seriously. I don't know if you are in an area where you can go ` dojo hopping` ? If there is nothing else nearby and the instruction is good, then take what is good from this dojo and leave the silly stuff behind as you leave the dojo.

Henry Ellis
http://aikidoarticles.blogspot.com/
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Old 10-12-2010, 07:59 AM   #34
Keith Larman
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Re: Japanezsing

If it is as bad as you claim, I really don't understand the issue. There is no need to discuss anything with anybody. Just leave. Find somewhere else to train. You don't need to "fix" them. You just need to find someplace you feel comfortable and clearly this ain't the place.

I've gone to places to learn, tried it for a while, but left feeling it just didn't click for me for any number of reasons. You don't have to justify or explain your reasons.

Heck, we have students that seem promising who one day just stop coming. We try to follow up if it is really jarring, but the reality is that people have busy lives and varied interests. Things change, focus changes, interests vary, and there is no reason to stay someplace if it isn't what you like.

Just leave.

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Old 10-12-2010, 08:37 AM   #35
Demetrio Cereijo
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Re: Japanezsing

Quote:
Anonymous User wrote: View Post
I am younger than the Sensei, and our relationship is strictly student and teacher. We don't speak casually or personally to each other. We are not BFFs. I would call it more of a professional relationship if any.
Here is, imo, the root of your problem.

Unless you are a formal deshi in a real koryu bujutsu dojo, you performed keppan, gave your body and soul to the clan/ryu, et c (as if you signed for the French Foreign Legion or USMC) you are a customer of a commodified leisure provider.

Sensei changed the product/service he sells and this new product/service doesn't satisfy your needs. Go buy in another place. There no need to make it personal, it is only business.

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Old 10-12-2010, 09:02 AM   #36
carina reinhardt
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Re: Japanezsing

Quote:
Anonymous User wrote: View Post
Update:

I am wondering now if I speak to the Sensei directly in regard to the new dojo obsession? If so, how? What advice can be given on my approach to a Sensei who has gone Japanese ren-fair, turning the dojo into a spectacle?

How do I say, "Sensei, this Japanese thing you're doing is getting absurd. And it is a bit much, not to mention it is highly distracting to me learning Aikido now?" How do I say correctly to the Senesi, "It isn't that I haven't enjoyed learning from you (up to this point). I have been here a while and have made some friends and people I like and are comfortable doing Aikido with, and I have learned many things. It's all good to this point. And I am hesitant to go somewhere else. I don't want to risk starting all over again somewhere else with someone else. I have equity in this dojo, and have made investments here. No complaints, but this Japanezing of things is really unbecoming, and it is giving me cause to consider quitting the class. Something I don't necessarily want to do." Any advice.

Take in consideration upon providing any wisdom in this matter, I am younger than the Sensei, and our relationship is strictly student and teacher. We don't speak casually or personally to each other. We are not BFFs. I would call it more of a professional relationship if any.

Thanks in advance

---real quick, it was my earlier assumption that the Sensei being well versed in knowledge of the Japanese and Japan doesn't come from a Japanese Aikido source. I am not sure of that, I could be wrong. I assumed the Sensei's knowledge is derived from other sources and experiences than Aikido. I made the assumption because of never hearing of any Japanese Aikido contacts or experiences mentioned in my presence.
Did you see Aikido from National Geographic in the Discovery Channel? Perhaps if you buy him a bottle of Sake, but make sure what brand he likes

Ok now without joke, I cannot give you any advice how to speak to somebody I don't know and less if it is your Sensei, I'm sorry
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Old 10-12-2010, 09:25 AM   #37
lbb
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Re: Japanezsing

Quote:
Keith Larman wrote: View Post
If it is as bad as you claim, I really don't understand the issue. There is no need to discuss anything with anybody. Just leave. Find somewhere else to train. You don't need to "fix" them. You just need to find someplace you feel comfortable and clearly this ain't the place.
Also...you're not going to be able to "fix" them. Their ways are their ways -- one person isn't going to change them. Leave, explore other options elsewhere, don't look back or concern yourself with what others are doing. If you've decided it's not for you, it is no longer your concern.
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Old 10-12-2010, 11:12 AM   #38
"Lazy Matt"
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Re: Japanezsing

Quick nit-pick, and only because I've been told it's very offensive to many Japanese-Americans, but "Japophile" (It's Japanophile) might not be the best way to phrase it. I don't get the sense you're trying to be rude, but just so you're aware in the future...
Nit-pick aside, have you asked the advice of the friends you've made there? Have you asked anyone why they've added the cultural affectations they have? There might be an intended purpose aside from it being fun. If my dojo adopted a tutu and zoro mask I wouldn't feel comfortable being forced to wear that...in which case I would either look for some intended meaning which justified the behavior, or I would go elsewhere while trying to maintain ties with friends made.
I'm reminded of the old saying if you love something set it free. You have an inclination to change your scene, if they care about your friendship they should probably respect that.
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Old 10-12-2010, 11:46 AM   #39
"UnregShoeFetish123"
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love my kicks

Are there Nike brand geta, in Japan?
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Old 10-12-2010, 02:32 PM   #40
Marc Abrams
Dojo: Aikido Arts of Shin Budo Kai/ Bedford Hills, New York
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Re: Japanezsing

I think that the respectful thing to do is to thank the Sensei for the opportunity to train at the dojo and that you wish the dojo well. You do not owe anybody an explanation as to why you are leaving. Good luck at your next dojo!

Marc Abrams
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Old 10-12-2010, 05:42 PM   #41
Chris Farnham
Dojo: Aikido of Champlain Valley/Hamamatsu Aikidokai/Aikido Shidokai
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Re: love my kicks

Quote:
Anonymous User wrote: View Post
Are there Nike brand geta, in Japan?
While I haven't seen them that doesn't seem so absurd after being in Japan a few years. I was on the Subway in Nagoya a couple months ago during a Chunichi Dragons(Nagoya's Pro Baseball Team) game day and saw lots of people wearing Yukatta with the Dragons logo on them.
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Old 10-12-2010, 06:09 PM   #42
raul rodrigo
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Re: Japanezsing

You're not responsible for them. There is no need for you to correct anyone. Just take your gi and go, and good luck.
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Old 10-12-2010, 07:41 PM   #43
danielajames
 
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Re: Japanezsing

Quote:
Anonymous User wrote: View Post
... it was indicated to me quite verbosely, in a strong Japaneseque manner it was time to follow in lock step. This was not the actual phrasing, but that is the gist of it.

...snip....

, it was my earlier assumption that the Sensei being well versed in knowledge of the Japanese and Japan doesn't come from a Japanese Aikido source. I am not sure of that, I could be wrong. I assumed the Sensei's knowledge is derived from other sources and experiences than Aikido. I made the assumption because of never hearing of any Japanese Aikido contacts or experiences mentioned in my presence.
Its a fine line but some cult alarm bells are starting to ring here.
Some traits are
- A charismatic leader who has knowledge that no others have
- mysterously gained knowledge
- Lots of behavioural demands and beginnings of boundary control

Its not uncommon to find some of these traits and others in aikido dojo because of the nature of the art and hierarchal structure, some dojo fit the definitions more than others.

Here's a quote
" ..In such groups leaders can make demands on followers that are seen as abusive by outsiders,... the group operates as a close knit social system and its activities are generally only carried with other members of the group. ...Boundary control is exercised by the group and compliance with group norms is assured by members....A clear difference between members and non-members is exercised" (Cults, Faith Healing and Coercion, M. Galanter, Oxford university Press 1989).

dan

PS Slightly OT, some thoughts on picking a dojo here

Daniel James, Brisbane Aikido Republic: AikiPhysics, Aikido Brisbane news,
ph 0413 001 844, 1593 Logan Rd, Mt.Gravatt, Brisbane, AUSTRALIA
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Old 10-12-2010, 08:52 PM   #44
Peter Goldsbury
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Re: Japanezsing

Hello Annoyed,

Since you have chosen to be anonymous, we have no idea where your dojo is located, so, as Mr Ellis noted, you may or may not be able to find another dojo easily. However, you asked in your last post for advice on whether or how to speak to your instructor.

Since you seem to be alone in your discomfort with the Japaneszing, what would be the point of speaking to your instructor? Is it merely to register your disapproval of the Japaneszing, or to get your instructor to cease the Japaneszing, or for you to prepare to leave the dojo? I think you need to be clear in your own mind what you want to achieve by talking to the instructor.

In my experience here in Japan, if people do not like the dojo--anything about the dojo that even appears to be a problem, they leave. They do not say anything at all: they just leave and that dojo ceases to have any more involvement with their lives.

Best wishes,

P A Goldsbury
_______________________
Hiroshima, Japan
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Old 10-12-2010, 09:30 PM   #45
RED
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Re: Japanezsing

Quote:
Joshua Reyer wrote: View Post
Really, it's not. But it's possible to be damn annoyed to have to "do as the Japanese do" when not in Japan or with Japanese people. Few things bug me like being called "Josh-san" or being bowed to when I'm in "American-mode".
yeahhh... MY NAME IS NOT SAN my name is Maggie not Sempai!
This is Florida dude!

..with that said, I like the hakama...looks cool.

MM
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Old 10-12-2010, 10:16 PM   #46
David Orange
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Re: Japanezsing

Quote:
Demetrio Cereijo wrote: View Post
Unless you are a formal deshi in a real koryu bujutsu dojo, you performed keppan, gave your body and soul to the clan/ryu, et c (as if you signed for the French Foreign Legion or USMC) you are a customer of a commodified leisure provider.

Sensei changed the product/service he sells and this new product/service doesn't satisfy your needs. Go buy in another place. There no need to make it personal, it is only business.
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Old 10-12-2010, 10:32 PM   #47
Keith Larman
Location: California
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Re: Japanezsing

You should look up Phil Elmore and his "Street Sword" video if you want to expand on Killways...

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Old 10-12-2010, 10:39 PM   #48
David Orange
Dojo: Aozora Dojo
Location: Birmingham, AL
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Re: Japanezsing

Quote:
Anonymous User wrote: View Post
Update: Roughly another month has passed and I am still at the dojo dealing with the ever increasingly annoyance (my personal feeling) of the dojo's perpetuation toward turning Japanese...
I have to plead guilty on this thing, myself.

I started "Japanezsing" in high school, imitating Kwai Chang Caine, then in college, when I was heavily involved in yoseikan aikido and I watched the Saturday kung fu movies with my sempai. We didn't even understand the difference between the Japanese and Chinese movies. We thought they were all samurai. But we agreed that it would be cool to go around in clothes like that. And then, as my connections to Japan started growing, I picked up little bits of Japanese or Japanezsed kind of clothing: various t-shirts, but then a yukata, which fit well thirty years ago. And when I had my own dojo and visited Japan, I gained a jimbe, which is a sort of festival suit--short pants and an airy cross-tied top. I started wearing the top with blue jeans. I started taking Japanese language lessons and throwing Japanese terms into my speech. I got shoes like Sonny Chiba in The Streetfighter. They were just regular black leather shoes, but even that, because of the intent, was "Japanezsing". How do you think they feel about "Americanezsing" of Japanese culture?

But even though I do understand the drive to assimilate a foreign culture, it can be annoying to those who don't share that drive. I just wanted, as fully as possible, to transmit a real Japanese art without "Americanezsing" it.

Of course, I went over the top, but I ended up being uchi deshi to a man who was one of the earliest uchi deshi to Morihei Ueshiba and, before that, uchi deshi to the judo master, Kyuzo Mifune. And I have a Japanese wife and all my kids have Japanese eyes.

Is it still Japanezsing?

Best to all.

David

"That which has no substance can enter where there is no room."
Lao Tzu

"Eternity forever!"

www.davidorangejr.com
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Old 10-12-2010, 10:40 PM   #49
David Orange
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Re: Japanezsing

Quote:
Keith Larman wrote: View Post
You should look up Phil Elmore and his "Street Sword" video if you want to expand on Killways...
Street Sword. That sounds like it could kill a man in a 117 ways.

"That which has no substance can enter where there is no room."
Lao Tzu

"Eternity forever!"

www.davidorangejr.com
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Old 10-12-2010, 11:08 PM   #50
"Annoyed"
IP Hash: 4b15e05e
Anonymous User
Re: Japanezsing

I am asking for a bit of forgiveness. The hour is late and the body is weary, as the mind. I hear what everyone is saying. To this juncture it is may humble intention to stay anonymous and use every syntactic, pompous verbiage required at hand not to remove the mask from which I speak from. This would cause allot of problems for me with others in the dojo. My advantage stems from the paucity of comprehension of my native language by those who respect the pedagogue of the dojo. And the Sensei too lacks the complete comprehension and command of the English parlance, yet peruses these virtual hallowed halls. This charade is getting to be at least a pain in the Biblical ass.

Major points of advice and I whole-heartly am sorry for not addressing every. but believe me I have read each post and taken it seriousl:

1. leave the dojo and go somewhere else
this is more difficult that it sounds. I have a sort of equity built up there.
The adjustment to a new dojo is difficult as you have to change methods of doing things, learn things their way. It is a challenge for your body and mind to relearn something new that isn't so different then before.
The quality of the next dojo is a concern. What hang ups and problems do they have. There are new people to deal with and you have to fit in to say the least. Who are you going to rub the wrong way, for example.
The risk of scuttlebutt and black balling following you around to different dojos. There are about a handful of Aikido schools listed on the next, all of which know my Sensei.

Changing dojo is a huge change. But not an impossible change. It will have to start from zero, and start new equity. 9 months isn't a long time but long enough for things to gel. To be in a rhythm and comfortable until this shit happened.

I will scout other places to see where I might fit in and how much will I have to dump.
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