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Old 07-09-2010, 09:39 AM   #51
t_jordan22
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

you fail to look at the bigger picture. For some yes it is about beating eachother up for girls and cash but there are some MMA fighters who do it, to test there skills. When you train in a dicipline your whole life eventually many of them want to see how well they could do against an opponent. Lyoto Machida for instance is a true martial artist who has trained his whole life. All he wants is to be the champion and prove he has pushed himself to be the best he can be. One thing that should be promoted which isint is competition in aikido. I have done my homework and I know what Aikido is about. I understand the reason there is no competition, but competition helps you to promote your skills. Aslong and you dont get too competitive and keep your heart pure, why not square off against someone. MMA fighters are some of the most respectful atheletes on the planet. Look at the NHL hockey players, These players have absolutely no dicipline. Now... I am a big hockey fan as I am Canadian, but I will not stop defending MMA untill hockey is adressed. MMA fighters come into the octagon trained and prepared to fight... it is what they came to do. NHL players come to the ice to play hockey and somewhere imbetween they decide they have to punch everyone in the face drop there gloves and start a fight. Now who is more professional and controlled. An MMA fighter who listens to the Ref and does what he was trained to do.. or a hockey player who scores some goals then decides to grab another player for no reason and start punching him in the face. Second off these players are on ice, wearing blades, improper equiptment, with otherpeople on the ice, and sticks. An MMA fight is in a controlled octagon, that is made for fighting. We do not hold an aikido class on ice.

In conclusion... two main points... like you said the MMA fighters choose to enter the octagon to prove themselves and test themselves to see how good they really are, which is what O sensei promoted. "Train your heart out everyday". MMA fighters just strive to be the best, some for money some for girls, but some for enlightenment and to push themselves forward in their careers and life. Second I will not allow anyone to call it a blood sport untill you look at the facts. More people have been injuried and even died while participating in pro boxing, hockey and football. MMA is quite controlled and safe, and as you may be unaware many people involved in MMA are submission specialists in which they do not even defeat the opponent by striking, he taps out. The fact of the matter is MMA is a great proving ground for martial artists. If you dont like it stick to aikido. Personally I do MMA triaing in brazillian jujitsu and kickboxing, and keep aikido as my meditation discipline to help me relax and calm myself. They are to different things. Look at steven seagal he is an aikido master and is fairly brutal in his movies. Make Aikido whatever you want. If you dont like MMA dont watch, if you dont liek the way that student was speaking ignore him or counsell him. But fighting and violence is also our biology. Also remember the Samurai were killers, but the killed for what you belive in. So do whatever you belive is right, but dont tell others how to live there lives. This kid may hurt someone one day and he will get a wakeup call. All you can do is practice aikido for peace and teach that to others, people will do what people do, follow your own heart, and you will surely walk the path O'sensei intended.
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Old 07-09-2010, 10:46 AM   #52
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

Michael Varin wrote:

Quote:
Who decides which people need to be killed? What is it that makes them very bad? What makes you want to kill them?

Is this a pre-existing, identifiable need to be exterminated thing? Or more of an at the moment their badness manifests sort of thing?
What Keith said.

AND to add....

I think each individual needs to make up his own mind about what criteria the deem is the "trigger point". I think it is a greatly personal thing and it may even transcend societies norms/values/laws in reality.

However, you may also pay the price if the greater society feels that you are wrong in your actions.

This is why it is important to "know yourself, and know your enemy".

On the other hand, society and governments have also allowed for criteria in which it is acceptable to kill or harm.

I think it is also necessary to understand that criteria and how you personally feel about it, mentally, ethically, and spiritually as well.

Was it morally right to execute Saddam Hussein? How about the Dealth Penalty on civil prisoners in the U.S in some states?

Self defense, law of armed conflict, geneva conventions?

Alot of people probably never think about it, ignore it, or are glad that they don't need to make the decisions, or pray that they may never have to!

Some people, who also do not really necessarily find joy in having to face making these decisions, do so because they feel that they need to stand up for a greater cause than themselves or the people they most kill. They are willing to live with the risk, sacrifice, and kharma that comes along with that for what they consider to be a "right" thing to do.

Again, I think it is a personal decision that must be made.

The tragic thing is when we avoid dealing with it, then we are faced to make a decision, and then regret the action that we took.

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Old 07-09-2010, 11:20 AM   #53
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

I think the issue is very simple for...I want to control my body and my life. I feel aggitated when there exists a condition that causes a stimulus to which I must respond. I feel fear when that stimulus jeopardizes my body. I feel pain when that stimulus damages my body. I feel panic when I cannot protectively respond to that stimulus. Now expand this mentatility to my larger social interaction: my family, my property, my neighborhood, my city, and my country. These are my spheres of interaction. The risk of losing control of a sphere increases as it move farther from my person. I am motivated to learn how better to control my spheres of interaction, and minimize risk to those spheres. Aikido is about empowerment to exercise better control and judgement over your spheres.

Killing is simply one of many risks I assume in my social spheres. It is a philosophical hot topic, so we fixate on it for lofty discussion. Want to reduce the risk of every having to decide to kill someone? Move to middle-of-nowhere Montana. The chances you'll ever be involved in a decision to take another's life will be minimal to that of living in NY City.

I think some of the false logic we hear about in this type of decision is [because of] the righteous indignation that someone would want to hurt us and the fact that largely we could not protect ourselves from someone who wanted to hurts us. The simple fact is most of us cannot adequately protect ourselves in response to a random act of violence. So we marginalize randomness because we are not prepared to respond to randomness. We seek meaning and purpose and murder often carries neither. We even have different words for the act to connotate meaning: killing is justifiable, murder is not.

I think when we say, that murder is bad we are really saying "do not attempt to kill me because I would not be able to defend myself." What if instead we said, "trying to harm me will result in your personal injury." Murder is an issue in society because most citizens cannot defend themselves from attack. Advocate non-violence, but practice self-protection. I think you'll find that eventually the two twine together...
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Old 07-09-2010, 12:54 PM   #54
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

Nice post Jon. I agree.

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Old 07-09-2010, 04:53 PM   #55
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

Quote:
Jon Reading wrote: View Post
I think when we say, that murder is bad we are really saying "do not attempt to kill me because I would not be able to defend myself." What if instead we said, "trying to harm me will result in your personal injury." Murder is an issue in society because most citizens cannot defend themselves from attack. Advocate non-violence, but practice self-protection. I think you'll find that eventually the two twine together...
I agree! Nice post, Jon! That's very similar to how I look at it. My morality begins with the idea of personal autonomy. Attacking me violates my personal rights which invites some kind of "fair" response. What fair is varies on any number of factors, for example, attacking me with my child around is cause for a more severe response as I am far less willing to allow for accidents to involve him. So it's easy for a lot of folks to make sweeping assertions I think, but really, whatever the appropriate response might be is dictated differently from situation to situation.
Another way to frame some of this might be in a thought I had studying folks like Ghandi, who I admire perhaps as much as anyone I can think of: sacrifice is a great way to get something accomplished, but you still have to stick around a while to make sure something meaningful comes from it. Simply giving yourself up for an idea, no matter how noble, can still leave a vaccume of influence. Nature abhoring a vaccume as it does will fill it with whatever is closest, not with whatever is nicest or best.

Gambarimashyo!
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Old 07-09-2010, 10:43 PM   #56
Michael Varin
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

Quote:
Keith Larman wrote:
You're not seriously asking that, are you?
I honestly don't know where you're coming from asking that.

As evidenced by your response it is not such a cut and dried issue, and is a question worth considering.

I assumed that most people, and probably Kevin when he made the statement, were imagining a self-defense/defense of others scenario like the last that you described.

But it remains that the statement was a general one, and I wanted clarification. I don't think all of my questions were answered, by the way.

-Michael
"Through aiki we can feel the mind of the enemy who comes to attack and are thus able to respond immediately." - M. Mochizuki
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Old 07-11-2010, 09:13 AM   #57
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

I think for most people, the issue certainly surrounds self defense.

However, as a mental or philosophical exercise. I don't believe that we should constrain our thinking to what is normally considered "self defense" in the strictest sense of the concept.

Obviously when we get into big issues such as war, we are dealing with a much more complex system..one that deals alot with second and third order effects.

Even then for most, it comes down to a personal harm scenario, though and the threat must be immediate and killing does something to stop further harm in an acute situation.

good discussion.

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Old 07-11-2010, 03:15 PM   #58
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

Quote:
Michael Varin wrote: View Post
I honestly don't know where you're coming from asking that.
Sorry, been away from the computer a few days.

Reading back I think it comes from having a philosophy degree... Seriously, the OP was talking about a rather constrained example. And I *thought* we were talking about a particular context. But if we're to "throw the doors open" to a vastly wider discussion about killing, I'm going to bow out of the conversation. We train in these arts for a hugely varied set of reasons and few share exactly the same balance of motivations. If we are talking about learning how a particular move within an art being studied is to kill, fine, that's part of the art, part of the domain which we are studying. If we couch it in terms of needing to learn these things for reasons such as self-defense and the like, well again I see a valuable conversation on a board such as this. Heck, I can even see expanding the conversation into discussions of wartime, although I think that's starting to stray from the original point.

But if we're going to get into the larger philosophical discussion of murder, justice, individual rights vs. social authority, well, that's something way beyond the scope of this particular forum IMHO.

Having degrees in philosophy (and religious studies and Political science) I've got zero problem with *having* that discussion. But it's a *really* big can of worms. And what we had been talking about, I think, is a really tiny can of worms in comparison. And when we start opening the big cans, well, that's my cue to exit stage left.

So I hope that gives context to my comment. It's not that I think those questions have been answered, it's just that the conversation I thought we were having is a lot narrower than the bigger ones.

But then again it might just be me reading more into it or misreading it. Lord knows that happens a lot.

Best.

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Old 07-12-2010, 11:54 AM   #59
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

Quote:
Even then for most, it comes down to a personal harm scenario, though and the threat must be immediate and killing does something to stop further harm in an acute situation.
Absolutely. I think this is also the focus Keith is trying to maintain. The larger context of how society determines whether killing is socially acceptable is a larger scope of discussion. We need to accept the fact that there are situational responses where killing is a valid response and socially acceptable.

We also need to personally prepare to committ to necessary action and accept personal responsibility for that action. I think another false statement we see in this discussion lies in the fact that most people don't want the personal responsibility of the decision to end another's life. We'd rather pass the buck and that's hard to do because the horror of killing is not just who is to blame...

As an example, I [humorously] argue that the best way to reduce meat consumption in the US is to require consumers to either slaughter their own meat, or participate in the the slaughter process. This is the underlying theme behind many slaughterhouse documentaries - and it is successful. People don't want to think about walking onto a farm and picking out a sheep rubbing on their leg...

Likewise, the general population does not possess the personal committment to carry out and accept responsibility for that kind of action. In fact (I can't say it enough), The Gift of Fear points out that most people submit to social pressure and rely upon the notion that violence is socially acceptable as their shield of protection. When an individual chooses to ignore that social contraint these people are left without defense.

We have a reponsibility to protect ourselves, and a responsibility to uphold the social norms of society. We need to rely on more than just our hope everyone also upholds the social norms. I tell my self-defense people..."you can either apologize to a stranger for being rude, or that stranger can apologize to your family at the sentencing."
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Old 10-25-2010, 08:44 PM   #60
graham christian
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

Hi. I find when I look spiritually that want and need are both of the ego and thus selfish whereas desire is of the spirit as is require. For me Aikido is a spiritual discipline and true spirit cannot harm so the discipline is to see through the ego of the opponent to their true spirit and true nature and via the vehicle of Aikido take them on a journey and show them a better way. G.
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Old 10-27-2010, 06:43 PM   #61
Mark Tyner
 
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

Quote:
Jon Reading wrote: View Post
I think the issue is very simple for...I want to control my body and my life. I feel aggitated when there exists a condition that causes a stimulus to which I must respond. I feel fear when that stimulus jeopardizes my body. I feel pain when that stimulus damages my body. I feel panic when I cannot protectively respond to that stimulus. Now expand this mentatility to my larger social interaction: my family, my property, my neighborhood, my city, and my country. These are my spheres of interaction. The risk of losing control of a sphere increases as it move farther from my person. I am motivated to learn how better to control my spheres of interaction, and minimize risk to those spheres. Aikido is about empowerment to exercise better control and judgement over your spheres.

Killing is simply one of many risks I assume in my social spheres. It is a philosophical hot topic, so we fixate on it for lofty discussion. Want to reduce the risk of every having to decide to kill someone? Move to middle-of-nowhere Montana. The chances you'll ever be involved in a decision to take another's life will be minimal to that of living in NY City.

I think some of the false logic we hear about in this type of decision is [because of] the righteous indignation that someone would want to hurt us and the fact that largely we could not protect ourselves from someone who wanted to hurts us. The simple fact is most of us cannot adequately protect ourselves in response to a random act of violence. So we marginalize randomness because we are not prepared to respond to randomness. We seek meaning and purpose and murder often carries neither. We even have different words for the act to connotate meaning: killing is justifiable, murder is not.

I think when we say, that murder is bad we are really saying "do not attempt to kill me because I would not be able to defend myself." What if instead we said, "trying to harm me will result in your personal injury." Murder is an issue in society because most citizens cannot defend themselves from attack. Advocate non-violence, but practice self-protection. I think you'll find that eventually the two twine together...
Thank you for these words Jon, I agree with you completely.
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Old 10-28-2010, 10:33 AM   #62
graham christian
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Cool Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

Aikido is a path to the discipline of HARMONY. There is no HARM in HARMONY.

Whereas one might see an opponent a true master only sees a lost friend. No matter what state that person is in he is asking to be returned to harmony, to be restored.

There is no AGAINST in true Aikido there is only the cultivation of the spirit of loving protection and the spirit of harmlessness.

Do not confuse this with sympathy.

PEACE! G.
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Old 10-28-2010, 11:54 AM   #63
Keith Larman
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

Quote:
Graham Christian wrote: View Post
Aikido is a path to the discipline of HARMONY. There is no HARM in HARMONY.
Sure there is. First four letters, right there... See?

Actually O-Sensei never used the word "harmony". He used a lot of really esoteric Japanese words and often used them in curious ways. "Harmony" *is* one common way to translate "ai" but it is incomplete and the word "harmony" carries a lot of connotations that he might or might not have agreed with in his usage of the term.

Sounds nicely philosophical, however.

Alas, Japanese is not my forte. So I'll bow out now.

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Old 10-28-2010, 12:43 PM   #64
Marc Abrams
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

Quote:
Keith Larman wrote: View Post
Sure there is. First four letters, right there... See?

Actually O-Sensei never used the word "harmony". He used a lot of really esoteric Japanese words and often used them in curious ways. "Harmony" *is* one common way to translate "ai" but it is incomplete and the word "harmony" carries a lot of connotations that he might or might not have agreed with in his usage of the term.

Sounds nicely philosophical, however.

Alas, Japanese is not my forte. So I'll bow out now.
I have to support Keith on this one. In Aikido, there is harm in harmony. If you execute an Aikido technique on an attacker who does not know a thing about ukemi on a hard surface and harm does result. When injuries happen in an Aikido class, that is another example of harm coming as a direct result of Aikido.

I frankly would restate things that if there is not the potential for harm in the harmony (ai) then there is no Aikido.

Marc Abrams

Last edited by Marc Abrams : 10-28-2010 at 12:43 PM. Reason: word missing
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Old 10-28-2010, 01:36 PM   #65
graham christian
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Smile Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

Quote:
Marc Abrams wrote: View Post
I have to support Keith on this one. In Aikido, there is harm in harmony. If you execute an Aikido technique on an attacker who does not know a thing about ukemi on a hard surface and harm does result. When injuries happen in an Aikido class, that is another example of harm coming as a direct result of Aikido.

I frankly would restate things that if there is not the potential for harm in the harmony (ai) then there is no Aikido.

Marc Abrams
Thank you keith and Marc. let me put it this way:
If you execute an AIKIDO technique on a bed of nails and the result is harmful then you were not in harmony and thus it wasn't true AIKIDO.

The responsibility is to look back at self to see the outness and thus learn rather than to justify the result. That is the way of Ego not Spirit.

Technique is seen as important and yet technique is not a BASIC, it is not a PRINCIPLE, it is not a truth. When a person comes to see and practice and KNOW the principles in AIKIDO he or she will find there is no harm and there is no opponent.

For example; The truth of ma-ai. Seen as keeping space or keeping distance and studied in this way a person can learn the and understand the concept of entering and angles and motion etc until he or she starts realizing the truth of it which is spiritual. You see spiritually MA-AI is also keeping distance but that does not mean keeping away from it actually means staying with.

When you are sitting listening to someone with a problem you could react and and tell them blah blah blah in an arrogant manner
and call that Aikido. You could also sympathise with them and call that Aikido. To me nether are Aikido as the first was an attack, an interference, a breaking of Ma-ai and the second was sympathy the result of which is the sympathiser BECOMING the effect and thus losing ma-ai.

Luckily there is a third way which no doubt you have done and that is you just BE WITH the person and listen, you remain with until they have gotten through their angst and come through the other side thankful relieved and feeling better. Now that is just one example of the power of a principle in action resulting in harmony and that is the message to learn in Aikido.

Thank you. G.
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Old 10-28-2010, 01:54 PM   #66
Demetrio Cereijo
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

Graham, I'm wondering if the "Golden Center Aikido" in your profile is this one:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M_6jZgzQJ74

Is it or is only a coincidence?

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Old 10-28-2010, 02:22 PM   #67
Marc Abrams
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

Quote:
Graham Christian wrote: View Post
Thank you keith and Marc. let me put it this way:
If you execute an AIKIDO technique on a bed of nails and the result is harmful then you were not in harmony and thus it wasn't true AIKIDO.

The responsibility is to look back at self to see the outness and thus learn rather than to justify the result. That is the way of Ego not Spirit.

Technique is seen as important and yet technique is not a BASIC, it is not a PRINCIPLE, it is not a truth. When a person comes to see and practice and KNOW the principles in AIKIDO he or she will find there is no harm and there is no opponent.

For example; The truth of ma-ai. Seen as keeping space or keeping distance and studied in this way a person can learn the and understand the concept of entering and angles and motion etc until he or she starts realizing the truth of it which is spiritual. You see spiritually MA-AI is also keeping distance but that does not mean keeping away from it actually means staying with.

When you are sitting listening to someone with a problem you could react and and tell them blah blah blah in an arrogant manner
and call that Aikido. You could also sympathise with them and call that Aikido. To me nether are Aikido as the first was an attack, an interference, a breaking of Ma-ai and the second was sympathy the result of which is the sympathiser BECOMING the effect and thus losing ma-ai.

Luckily there is a third way which no doubt you have done and that is you just BE WITH the person and listen, you remain with until they have gotten through their angst and come through the other side thankful relieved and feeling better. Now that is just one example of the power of a principle in action resulting in harmony and that is the message to learn in Aikido.

Thank you. G.
Graham:

What flavor of Kool-aid do you have to drink to begin to live in such an ideal, philosophical world? When O'Sensei's ukes got hurt, was O'Sensei not practicing true Aikido?

It is awfully nice to wax poetically about what true Aikido is. Did O'Sensei whisper these sweet nothings in your ear? I'll tell you what, why don't we arrange a little demonstration. I will find a deranged person and provide them with a nice, sharp dagger. I will tell this person that you are responsible for that person's misery and that by killing you, he can rid himself of his demons. This person will then run at you, genuinely trying to kill you. I would like to see how your true Aikido results in no harm.

Your wonderful words belong in the sweet, idyllic space of philosophical wonderment. My teacher was a direct student of O'Sensei. From many of his accounts, O'Sensei's execution of technique had more than enough healthy supply of harm within "Ai." For your sake, I hope that the real world does not violently collide with your philosophical fantasies about what you believe "true Aikido" to be.

Marc Abrams
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Old 10-28-2010, 03:38 PM   #68
graham christian
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Circle Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

Quote:
Demetrio Cereijo wrote: View Post
Graham, I'm wondering if the "Golden Center Aikido" in your profile is this one:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M_6jZgzQJ74

Is it or is only a coincidence?
Hi demetrio, yes that is one of my clips, they all come under the name humblegee.
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Old 10-29-2010, 11:23 AM   #69
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

Quote:
Luckily there is a third way which no doubt you have done and that is you just BE WITH the person and listen, you remain with until they have gotten through their angst and come through the other side thankful relieved and feeling better.
I heard a joke open with "my parents always called be lazy because I never did anything with my life. Turns out I was Buddhist."

In my experience aikido is about two things: 1. taking out your own trash; 2. allowing your partner to take out her trash.

Somewhere along the line, it became popular in aikido to think that your actions control another's action. Or worse, that you should tailor your action to another's action.
Quote:
Technique is seen as important and yet technique is not a BASIC, it is not a PRINCIPLE, it is not a truth. When a person comes to see and practice and KNOW the principles in AIKIDO he or she will find there is no harm and there is no opponent.
In this sense, I have an opponent as long as my opponent thinks she is my opponent. I agree with what Marc is saying - you do not control another human being, you can only control yourself. The aikido I train is not contingent upon the enlightenment or charity of my partner.
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Old 10-29-2010, 12:28 PM   #70
graham christian
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

Quote:
Jon Reading wrote: View Post
I heard a joke open with "my parents always called be lazy because I never did anything with my life. Turns out I was Buddhist."

In my experience aikido is about two things: 1. taking out your own trash; 2. allowing your partner to take out her trash.

Somewhere along the line, it became popular in aikido to think that your actions control another's action. Or worse, that you should tailor your action to another's action.

In this sense, I have an opponent as long as my opponent thinks she is my opponent. I agree with what Marc is saying - you do not control another human being, you can only control yourself. The aikido I train is not contingent upon the enlightenment or charity of my partner.
Such is the way of your Aikido my friend. Enjoy!
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Old 10-29-2010, 04:36 PM   #71
Brian Gillaspie
 
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

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The question is: Why would anyone WANT to hurt or kill another person?
I am not going to try to persuade anyone about whether or not it is ok to hurt or kill someone. Based on the oringially posted question I can say that I do not WANT to hurt or killl another person. However, I WOULD hurt or kill another person if necessary.
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Old 11-01-2010, 08:28 AM   #72
DonMagee
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

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Michael McNamara wrote: View Post
If that's your thrust, then why not wrestling?...remember that sport? It doesn't require drawing blood, does it? Your defense is nothing more than a fig leaf on your testosterone. You're trying to rationalize brutality. We should seek to be better than that. Brutality is, by my view, even lower than the animal kingdom. They don't kill for pleasure; they kill for necessity.
Cat's kill for sport. I have a lot of cats, I can tell you they kill things without any intent of eating. It dies and they walk away saddened that their toy is dead.

Dolphins kill for sport. They have been seen killing turtles as a pod playing a game. It is believed they do this out of sexual frustration.

Coyotes have also been known to kill for sport. Going though a herd of animals killing them all but taking none.

Foxes kill for sport, they will frequently only take the heads of their pray and leave the bodies to rot.

I've seen dogs kill for sport. Chasing down rabbits and flinging them in the air over and over. Frustrated when they die and off hunting for a new toy.

Even apes and monkeys are known to kill for sport.

Humans are just animals, however, some of us aspire to be better than animals. No matter what though we are at our core animals. The goal of all animals is to live and reproduce. Anyone trying to take that away from me will be met with animalistic force.

Martial arts to me are not about that. MMA/BJJ/Judo/Boxing to me is not about that. While I used to train in martial arts for defense. I now train as a powerful form of self insight. To see what I can overcome, what I can accomplish, and what I can create. This is the core of the fight to me. The creation of order from chaos. I do not seek to hurt my opponent in a sparing match, that is simply a side effect of our pursuit of order from chaos.

I've learned far more about spirituality, myself, and wisdom by being punched in the face in a sparing match then I have ever learned from any sensei.

- Don
"If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough" - Albert Einstein
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Old 11-03-2010, 02:11 AM   #73
Randall Lim
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

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Andrew Gordan wrote: View Post
One thing that should be promoted which isnt is competition in aikido. I have done my homework and I know what Aikido is about. I understand the reason there is no competition, but competition helps you to promote your skills. Aslong and you dont get too competitive and keep your heart pure, why not square off against someone.
This is exactly what the Judo world is facing. Judo competitions have made Judo into merely a sport with almost no more "Ju" evident in it at all. "Ju" means "soft", "gentle", "yield", etc.

Judo trainings have narrowed down to only what really matters in competition. Competition rules have become Judo's guiding principles. Competition rules are put in place for safety reasons. However, the Essence of Judo is totally lost. Bad martial habits are accepted & ignored in competitions as long as the match can be won. The traditional Judoka sees no "Ju" in any of these.

Even in kata training, no "Ju" is experienced either.

There is a current out-cry from traditional Judokas for Judo to move away from too much emphasis on competitions.

Let us, as Aikidokas, learn from our Judo counterparts, to stay away from anything that might rob us of the true essence of the path we all love so much, Aikido.
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Old 11-03-2010, 07:29 AM   #74
Randall Lim
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

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Michael McNamara wrote: View Post
I've had something on my mind lately that disturbs me and I wanted a forum on this subject. The question is: Why would anyone WANT to hurt or kill another person? I should explain......

Something happened yesterday that made me take pause. There was a new student in our Aikido class who mostly takes Krav Maga at the same dojo. While we were paired up, we practiced kotegaeshi, and when his turn came up, he did the move, but added a rather rough end pin where he lifted me back up with a painful arm bend, which was not how we were supposed to execute. That didn't bother me much, but while he had me he said "If you want to kill someone, then do this." which was a mock hit to the thorax.

This left an impression on me all day. Now, what has been on my mind is a deep reflection on two words. Though Webster's Dictionary might not concur, I've always understood a clear distinction between "WANT" and "NEED". To me, needing to kill or harm is something necessary to preserve one's life, the life of loved ones, or property in the face of an immediate threat that cannot be quelled by reason. In times of war, needing to kill the enemy is understood. On the other side, wanting to do harm or kill another person seems to me sinister, or at least lacking in any morality that respects human life.

So then I turn my mind towards MMA and UFC fighting. I know there are members here who take part in this, so what benefit does it serve humanity to make one's living or recreation by beating the crap out of another human being? I mean, dog fighting is illegal, so what's the difference, other than it not being to the death? You CHOOSE to be there; no one is forcing you to enter the ring. Over the past fifteen years, I've watched as the blood sport has gained popularity and followers, and I can't help but feel disturbed that this is going to be the norm, where showing how brutal one can be is a demarcation of one's self worth in society.

I knew this kid many years ago who got into cage fighting. We asked him why he risked his life like that and he said "The women they give you are fine!" Really? Is that what it takes to earn the physical affections of beautiful women? Great........so one is willing to throw their humanity away for a piece of ass? Stop the car, I'm getting out here!

I live in Los Angeles. I know it is rough, and there are times when defending myself is a need. I train in Aikido not WANTING to do harm, but do so to prepare for the nut job that may drift my way in the future. Whatever the situation, I train with the goal to do as little harm to another human being in order to subdue him.

If that really is the point, then the thirteenth commandment should be changed from "Thou shalt not kill" to "Thou shalt not WANT to kill", that way more people could obey it.

Any other thoughts or perspectives would be greatly appreciated.
Aikido's philosophy, or any other true Budo, is to protect your enemy or leave him unharmed even while defending from his attacks.

This is of a very high calling, thus extremely difficult to achieve unless one has reached spiritual enlightenment.

According to the book "Aikido and the Dynamic Sphere" by A. Westbrook & O. Ratti, on page 33 under the section entitled "The Ethics of Defence in Combat", it states that there are four levels of Ethics of defence in combat:

The lowest level of Ethics is Level 1:
Level 1: Unprovoked Tori initiates attack & kills innocent Uke.

Level 2: Unprovoked Tori provokes innocent Uke who initiates attack. Tori defends & seriously injures Uke.

Level 3: Innocent Tori receives unprovoked Uke's initiated attack.
Tori defends & seriously injures Uke.

Level 4: Innocent Tori receives unprovoked Uke's initiated attack.
Tori defends but does NOT injure Uke (through controlled technique).

"Not injure Uke" means ensuring that any pain felt by Uke only lasts for as long as the pressure remains. No more pain should be felt by Uke once the pressure is removed.

Level 4 is the highest.

Last edited by Randall Lim : 11-03-2010 at 07:34 AM.
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Old 11-03-2010, 09:44 AM   #75
Marc Abrams
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Re: Life Question - Harming Another Human Being

Quote:
Randall Lim wrote: View Post
Aikido's philosophy, or any other true Budo, is to protect your enemy or leave him unharmed even while defending from his attacks.

This is of a very high calling, thus extremely difficult to achieve unless one has reached spiritual enlightenment.

According to the book "Aikido and the Dynamic Sphere" by A. Westbrook & O. Ratti, on page 33 under the section entitled "The Ethics of Defence in Combat", it states that there are four levels of Ethics of defence in combat:

The lowest level of Ethics is Level 1:
Level 1: Unprovoked Tori initiates attack & kills innocent Uke.

Level 2: Unprovoked Tori provokes innocent Uke who initiates attack. Tori defends & seriously injures Uke.

Level 3: Innocent Tori receives unprovoked Uke's initiated attack.
Tori defends & seriously injures Uke.

Level 4: Innocent Tori receives unprovoked Uke's initiated attack.
Tori defends but does NOT injure Uke (through controlled technique).

"Not injure Uke" means ensuring that any pain felt by Uke only lasts for as long as the pressure remains. No more pain should be felt by Uke once the pressure is removed.

Level 4 is the highest.
Randall:

There is major difference between reality and philosophy. Spiritual enlightenment is useless in absence on peerless martial abilities.

Marc Abrams
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