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Old 08-18-2000, 05:57 AM   #26
Chuck Clark
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Dojo: Jiyushinkan
Location: Monroe, Washington
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 1,134
Thumbs down


(and that's a "passionate" amen!!!)

Chuck Clark
Jiyushinkai Aikibudo
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Old 08-18-2000, 02:02 PM   #27
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Anonymous User
Re: Thanks, Greg....

Yeah, Suenaka does explain it well. Id recommend the book to all.

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Old 08-18-2000, 05:25 PM   #28
Dojo: Centerfield Aikido
Location: Healdsburg
Join Date: Aug 2000
Posts: 2
Cool Tohei Sensei

Tohei Sensei is an interesting person in his own right. If you search the web there is a tremendous interview with him explaining "where he is comming from" in his seemingly radical ideas about aikido. My sensei has trained with him and many others before he split and has nothing but good things to say about his teachings. Although we are Aikikai, clearly she has been greatly and appreciatively influenced by Tohei. Also Thom Crums book talks a little about Tohei's decision process and it was alot more than a single unrehearsed explosion in front of Doshu as it is often explained as. Tohei has done alot for Aikido in general and it is worth looking at his ideas no matter how un aiki they might seem at the surface. Anyway.. my 2 cents worth. Scubaman57.
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Old 08-18-2000, 08:03 PM   #29
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 563
Erik wrote:

For the record, there is nothing wrong with disagreement. Vigorous discussion is one way to test an idea and sometimes if someone isn't emotional they aren't really involved. Aikidoists can get so damn PC that I sometimes wonder if they are even alive or think for themselves.

It's ok to be passionate.
I agree, arguing can be a great pastime- in fact, one that I do enjoy engaging in . However, I am against the pointless bickering that was starting to plague this thread (NO YOU LOOK AT _YOUR_ post etc)...

I'm sorry, but I put up with enough dumb bickering at school, I like to come here to have a good argument, and I get a bit passionate (which is ok ) when all I hear is nitpicking at other's (off topic) downfalls...

sorry if this sounds hypocritical because I'm bickering now... I've had a loooong week...

Sorry for rambling,

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Old 08-23-2000, 06:53 AM   #30
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Join Date: Aug 2000
Anonymous User
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Sure ... training is important. However, to train aikido without understanding its philosophy is to put the cart before the horse.

A person may be a deadly fighter after years of training, but what is his values if he is not developed in character and spirit? In that case, what is the difference between him and a wild, ferocious tiger? Both are equally capable of fighting.

To let a person learn a deadly art without refining his spirit is as good as giving a machine gun to a bandit. That is why O-sensei changed the art from aiki-jujitsu to aikido. Incidentally, people are supposed to realise at least some aspects of the philosophy after years of training in aikido.

One can probably read up some books by John Stevens on the philosophy of aikido. An alternative book is "The spirit of aikido" by the late Doshu, Kissamaru-sensei, written just before his death.

The focus of attention in this discussion should be on the actions, and not the persons behind the actions. Outright criticisms of the founder, regardless if it is done by Tohei or any other Tom, Dick or Harry, are just not acceptable. If anybody miss this point, he probably miss the entire discussion altogether.

Whether Tohei splits from aikikai or not, whether Tohei has bad blood with aikikai or not, whether the culprit is Tohei or some other fellow, whether O-sensei is a god or not, are not the issues here.

For clarity sake, these actions (especially when directed to people outside the field of aikido) are deemed to be very aggressive. There are little differences in their spirit as compared to making attempts to start a fight, especially with outright proclamations that others' concepts are wrong when they are not even provoking oneself in the first place. Again, this is going directly against the Budo spirit, or aikido spirit for that matter.

By the way, I used to train with Tohei-sensei until I broke away. My reasons are similar to Suenaka-san ... he deviates too much from O-sensei. But these are personal reasons that should not interfere with the discussion here.

Finally, may the Budo spirit be with you!
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Old 08-23-2000, 10:25 AM   #31
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 915
i guess i'm a little confused, Free Spirit...
if you have studied under Tohei Sensei (and how lucky for you to study under someone who was chosen by O Sensei to be his chief instructor), then why would you ask others, most of whom do no personally know him, to comment on him? isn't that the same form of disrespect you are saying he should not show? I have spent varying amounts of time in different dojos having roots in Yoshinkai/Aikikai, Iwama,Nihon Goshin, ASU (with a touch of Shin Budo Kai), and pure ASU---each with its own fondness for and reverence for their shihan and style. Closemindedness, on anyone's part, just reflects poorly on the individual, and to some extent on his sensei---luckily, i do not see too much of it. and by having so many different influences, i definately have learned the value of learning different ways, and that no one way is THE right way, or even O Sensei's way, i think they all are.
finally, before giving up this very nice soap box, when i was in medical school a common point in lectures was "you will only remember 20% of what you are taught here" (next time you see your family doc, ask him how often he uses the knowledge of how many ATPs are released at the end of the Krebs Cycle)...so if Tohei Sensei really uses 30% of what he was taught, he's ahead of most of us.
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Old 08-23-2000, 10:45 AM   #32
Join Date: Aug 2000
Posts: 168
As aikidoka, I don't think we should do anything that brings disrespect on our teachers, our art, and especially not on O'sensei. We are what the rest of the world sees first, and what will attract them to learn more about aikido.

I wish there weren't so many politics involved in the aikido world, but that is the way it is. I'll continue to come in to train because I know the quality of instruction that I am getting is worth it. Isn't that what it really comes down to? If Tohei Sensei is a great instructor, then learn what you can from him if you have the opportunity to train with him.

There is a quote I think by Teddy Roosevelt about the critic standing on the sideline, questioning the true hero in the thick of conflict, living in it. That to that person (in the field) goes the honor. If someone has this quote, please add it to this list, otherwise I'll look for it myself and add it later. It is worth remembering.

One question, though. The Free Spirit said that Tohei Sensei retains 30% of O'sensei's teachings, which CA understood to mean "remembers." When I read TFS's original post, I thought she (I think 'she', sorry if it's 'he') intended it as Tohei Sensei "kept" 30% of O'sensei's teachings and "changed" the other 70%. Could we get a clarification?
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Old 08-23-2000, 02:53 PM   #33
Dojo: formerly Windward Aikido, formerly at Keewenaw Schools of Aikido (ASU)
Location: Formerly Hawaii Pacific University, formerly at Michigan Technological University
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 71

No ones word is above scrutiny. I'm not saying that I've found something wrong with O-sensei or his teachings. I should dream to be as great a MAN as he. Still, he's just mortal and everyone who has every told me about him was just mortal. He was as about as in touch (in my opinion) with god as possible and yet that doesn't mean that memorizing or discrediting his words or actions will make one any wiser. Or maybe it will...

"One does not find wisdom in another's words." -James D. Chye
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Old 08-23-2000, 05:44 PM   #34
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Dojo: Evanston Ki-Aikido
Location: Evanston IL
Join Date: Aug 2000
Posts: 826

Magma wrote:

One question, though. The Free Spirit said that Tohei Sensei retains 30% of O'sensei's teachings, which CA understood to mean "remembers." When I read TFS's original post, I thought she (I think 'she', sorry if it's 'he') intended it as Tohei Sensei "kept" 30% of O'sensei's teachings and "changed" the other 70%. Could we get a clarification?
This quote is from the "Interview with Koichi Tohei" at JoonRhee.Com

Koichi Tohei said:

The one essential thing I learned from Ueshiba Sensei was how to relax. He was always relaxed in the face of conflict, which is why his Aikido was so strong. He would do this himself, but he encouraged his young students to hold with as much strength as possible. In Aikido if you are not relaxed you cannot throw a person. It seemed a mystery to us that Ueshiba Sensei could always throw, could always get out of a hold. He would lead your Ki, and could always throw his opponent in the direction he was already going. I began to make rapid progress after I started copying what he did, and paid less attention to what he said. I ended up only keeping about 30% of the techniques I learned from Ueshiba Sensei, changing or dropping the rest. What I really learned from him was not technique, but the true secret of Aikido, non-dissension; not to resist your opponent's strength but to use it.
Magma wrote:

There is a quote I think by Teddy Roosevelt about the critic standing on the sideline, questioning the true hero in the thick of conflict, living in it. That to that person (in the field) goes the honor. If someone has this quote, please add it to this list, otherwise I'll look for it myself and add it later. It is worth remembering.
I don't think this is the exact Theodore Roosevelt quote you were thinking of, but it reflects the same feeling.

"Far better to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure, than to take rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much . . . in the grey twilight that knows not victory nor defeat." .
This Theodore Roosevelt quote also reflects the same thought.

"The only people who never make a mistake are the people who never do anything." .
Ted Ehara
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Old 09-09-2000, 10:46 AM   #35
ze'ev erlich
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Dojo: Masatake Dojo - Israel Aikikai
Location: Rehovot - Israel
Join Date: Sep 2000
Posts: 167

you are right.

no one should talk publicly like that.

it is surely a bad example.

could you please help further to make this subject more known by publishing the booklet over the internet or some other way?

could you possibly send me a copy?


now lets keep the spirit of aikido and not let it get us angry.

we just have to learn and not to repeat bad things that other sensei do.

enjoy aikido

Ze'ev from Masatake Dojo Rehovot
Israeli Aikikai

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Old 09-15-2000, 04:03 AM   #36
Dojo: Two Cranes Aikido
Location: Seattle
Join Date: Sep 2000
Posts: 9
Thumbs down

Well said, Cas. Ki Society people: I don't care who said what about whom. These old sqabbles go back decades. We can train together despite them; just show me how that koteoroshi goes, ok?
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