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Old 06-18-2011, 08:21 PM   #276
gregstec
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Graham Christian wrote: View Post
Greg, just to inform you the thread I mention above is entitled 'Hard before Soft ???'

My basic tenets I adhere to are from Statements by O'Sensei and indeed Tohei. Not from the view that they are mistranslations but from the view that spiritually they make sense. Statements like 'There is no attacker in Aikido for the moment he attacks he has already lost' (may not be word perfect) If I'm not mistaken Ki Aikido and Tohei prefered to use the term 'partner' instead of opponent. Another thing that physically and analytically don't make sense but spiritually makes perfect sense.

Regards.G.
All this is really great spiritual stuff and I am with you on it from a spiritual perspective. However, what about the martial perspective of Aikido? if that is something you don't dwell on, that is OK if that is what you are all about - live and let live I say

Best

Greg
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Old 06-18-2011, 08:37 PM   #277
graham christian
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

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Greg Steckel wrote: View Post
So, when you blend who leads the composite energies?

Greg
We do.

G.
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Old 06-18-2011, 08:43 PM   #278
gregstec
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

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Graham Christian wrote: View Post
We do.

G.
LOL - Nice answer - but where does that lead you two to ?
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Old 06-18-2011, 08:51 PM   #279
graham christian
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

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Greg Steckel wrote: View Post
All this is really great spiritual stuff and I am with you on it from a spiritual perspective. However, what about the martial perspective of Aikido? if that is something you don't dwell on, that is OK if that is what you are all about - live and let live I say

Best

Greg
It's very martial from a different perspective. When O'Sensei said true budo is love he meant it. It takes great discipline to do so.

Regards G.
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Old 06-18-2011, 08:58 PM   #280
graham christian
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

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Greg Steckel wrote: View Post
LOL - Nice answer - but where does that lead you two to ?
To the end of the movement, the journey.

Imagine meeting and joining with someone, a friend getting on a bus. You thus travel the path together.

Now imagine joining a fiend on a Ferris wheel or the 'london eye' so to speak. Both on the same journey.

The 'vehicle' in this case is the universal path that is already there thus we both go for a ride. The shape of the path is determined by the aiki motion or harmonious motion used to join in alignment.

Regards.G.
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Old 06-18-2011, 09:01 PM   #281
gregstec
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

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Graham Christian wrote: View Post
It's very martial from a different perspective. When O'Sensei said true budo is love he meant it. It takes great discipline to do so.

Regards G.
Well since you put it that way, I guess I can't argue against O'Sensei - by the way, it must be way past your bed time time in the UK since it is 11:00 pm here on the East Coast of the colonies - time to say good night Gracie
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Old 06-18-2011, 09:01 PM   #282
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Graham Christian wrote: View Post
My basic tenets I adhere to are from Statements by O'Sensei and indeed Tohei. Not from the view that they are mistranslations but from the view that spiritually they make sense. Statements like 'There is no attacker in Aikido for the moment he attacks he has already lost' (may not be word perfect) If I'm not mistaken Ki Aikido and Tohei prefered to use the term 'partner' instead of opponent. Another thing that physically and analytically don't make sense but spiritually makes perfect sense.
Graham,

Thanks for the effort(less way) to reveal the principles of Ki-Aikido layer by layer. Ki-Aikido is also something that needs hands-on experiences to know the unspeakable beauty of the art.

Ting

P.S. I recognized what you did from your videos with the funny hats.
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Old 06-18-2011, 09:07 PM   #283
gregstec
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

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Graham Christian wrote: View Post
To the end of the movement, the journey.

Imagine meeting and joining with someone, a friend getting on a bus. You thus travel the path together.

Now imagine joining a fiend on a Ferris wheel or the 'london eye' so to speak. Both on the same journey.

The 'vehicle' in this case is the universal path that is already there thus we both go for a ride. The shape of the path is determined by the aiki motion or harmonious motion used to join in alignment.

Regards.G.
Yeah, but let's say on that journey you ask the friend to pay their half share of the cost and they say you invited me - then you say: so, you still need to pay; then your friend takes a swing at you - so, who leads that journey

Greg
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Old 06-18-2011, 09:10 PM   #284
graham christian
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

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Ting Piao wrote: View Post
Graham,

Thanks for the effort(less way) to reveal the principles of Ki-Aikido layer by layer. Ki-Aikido is also something that needs hands-on experiences to know the unspeakable beauty of the art.

Ting

P.S. I recognized what you did from your videos with the funny hats.
Oh, thanks for the validation. Well, Gregs right, time for bed.

Regards.G.
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Old 06-18-2011, 09:12 PM   #285
gregstec
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

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Graham Christian wrote: View Post
Oh, thanks for the validation. Well, Gregs right, time for bed.

Regards.G.
See, I knew I could get you to agree with me
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Old 06-18-2011, 09:59 PM   #286
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

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Greg Steckel wrote: View Post
Yeah, but let's say on that journey you ask the friend to pay their half share of the cost and they say you invited me - then you say: so, you still need to pay; then your friend takes a swing at you - so, who leads that journey
Greg
It isn't martial. It never will be. I get confused when they start quoting "Budo is love" when it was used for many attrocities. In this case, Ueshiba, who taught assassins and hard core right wing military people, who later in his career gave people concusion, broke hips in randori, knocked people out... on and on.
Spiritual ki that resolves conflict in a dojo? It's fantasy that they cannot fulfill. You will not find a single dojo that trains this way, not even one, who has a capable fighter as the attacker. Why? They are not capable of defending themselves against one using their described methods.
On the other hand, playing with movement can be fun and that is what they are truly doing.
On the other...other hand, playing with ki ...as strength and aiki, can be incredibly martial, no matter who is attacking.
Dan

Last edited by DH : 06-18-2011 at 10:06 PM.
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Old 06-18-2011, 10:08 PM   #287
SteveTrinkle
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

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Greg Steckel wrote: View Post
Hi Graham,

Just got back from my beer misogi in the hot tub - I conducted a little training session on IS and its application into a few basic Daito Ryu techniques today - nothing better than beer and hot tub to get the mind and body loosened up and connected into harmony
Greg,

Thanks for that today. Had a good time and left with more to work on. As usual!

Cheers,
Steve

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Old 06-19-2011, 01:59 AM   #288
Nicholas Eschenbruch
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

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Dan Harden wrote: View Post
(...) You will not find a single dojo that trains this way, not even one, who has a capable fighter as the attacker. Why? They are not capable of defending themselves against one using their described methods.
(...)
On the other hand, playing with movement can be fun and that is what they are truly doing.
(...)
On the other...other hand, playing with ki ...as strength and aiki, can be incredibly martial, no matter who is attacking.
Dan
Dan,
Could you agree that there may be a whole array of meaningful practices between "a capable fighter attaking" and "playing with movement"? It is the whole world of modern aikido! Now you may not be interested, but I still think its a legitimate world.

I get a little weary of the strawman - not attributing it to you here, but seeing it all over recently - that aikido is either a full blown fighting art or meaningless ribbon dancing: when all the stuff in between continues to transform people's lives, who is to say they are wrong in what they do. I sometimes think it could help if the hard-ass fighters could acknowledge that there is something they not only dont want to be part of, that is the easy bit heard all over, but also really have little idea about.

I have used aikido in an important life situation - and no, it was not a fight. If I told you about it over a beer maybe you would understand, maybe you would shake your head in disbelief about my bunny world. But that is my frame of relevance. (and then of course I would like to be able to do a fraction of what you do, too ) Other people have other frames.

Of course I realise and understand you guys get angry when ignorant people make pretentious claims about the fighting nature of what they can do, and they cannot. But I personally think aikido can best be considered a fascinating creative process about whose totality we all really dont know much . You have become such an interesting force in it yourself.

So much for this brief rant, back to breathing through my bunny ears. Hope you are well!

Last edited by Nicholas Eschenbruch : 06-19-2011 at 02:05 AM. Reason: totally changed meaning to confuse people... then spelling
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Old 06-19-2011, 02:47 AM   #289
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

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Graham Christian wrote: View Post
It's very martial from a different perspective. When O'Sensei said true budo is love he meant it. It takes great discipline to do so.

Regards G.
I back you on that. Even though i don't do Aikido any more, I begin to see that everything O'sensei said, he meant. He did not say things unnecessarily they all had meaning and truth to it. But it must be understood from a spiritual point of view, or much of it seems like a complete ramble.
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Old 06-19-2011, 06:10 AM   #290
gregstec
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

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Stephen Trinkle wrote: View Post
Greg,

Thanks for that today. Had a good time and left with more to work on. As usual!

Cheers,
Steve
You are welcome - glad I could help enlighten you, and I hope I was not too martial for your Aikido sensitivities

Greg
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Old 06-19-2011, 06:15 AM   #291
DH
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Hello Nicholas
I think most Aikido dojo in fact due function in that role, in various forms. but it wasn't that role or type of dojo that was being discussed.
When you think about it how many people want or need that kind of pressure in their hobby. I train with a lot people in Aikido, many if not most are the professional type, married, with kids, have full lives and are not too concerned with getting in a fight any time soon. They have a "My budo is mentally and physically stimulating enough for me...thank you very much." kind of attitude.
I see nothing wrong with that. Its healthy and fun. Almost all of us from Aikido to DR, to BJJ, to Judo are somewhere in the middle, self aware, and having fun. And not confused about the reality of their own choices.
The other postive aspects that function within that paradigm is the mental game of trying to pull something off, in balance, yes with cooperation, that does something very positive to people mentally. I know plenty of people that have talked about that aspect of aikido (and other budo) helping them in their daily lives.
So here you have a physical and mental practice that offers physical and mental challenges to people that brings value to their lives. Not bad eh? To me, those are not the people that fit Meik Skosses term of "Aikibunnies."

Oh, one other thing. No I don't think you have to go all out into MMA and are somehow less than if you don't. I've never thought that way.
To be fair, there -are- grades of pressure testing in budo though. Those who chose or choose to play in more pressured environments deserve as much credit for the realities of their choices. You hear just as much derision aimed at grapplers as some sort of meat head. When in fact grappling is done by the same broad range of people that do other budo. I guess I am more concerned that all of us have a balanced view of what we do.

In my previous post,I was (only) discussing that other extreme, lets call it far off the beam from average. They are not exclusive to aikio either. Those who's practice is "out there" in the first place and who actually think that hyper cooperative playing with movement, and defending with "spiritual ki" is going to work with someone trying to do you harm.
To me those are the aikibunnies
Cheers
Dan

Last edited by DH : 06-19-2011 at 06:27 AM.
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Old 06-19-2011, 06:35 AM   #292
gregstec
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

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Simon Kirk Sørensen wrote: View Post
I back you on that. Even though i don't do Aikido any more, I begin to see that everything O'sensei said, he meant. He did not say things unnecessarily they all had meaning and truth to it. But it must be understood from a spiritual point of view, or much of it seems like a complete ramble.
I am having fun going back and forth with Graham and I love the guy for the way he handles his controversies in the forum. Also, I understand where he is coming from on the spiritual stuff - if that is that way he and others like to look at Aikido, that is great since Aikido does have a lot of spiritual stuff in it based on Ueshiba's teachings.

However, Aikido can also be a very effective martial system on a non spiritual level as well; which Ueshiba demonstrated very well in his early years. People in the pursuit of that skill have every right to call that 'Aikido' as do the spiritual people do to call their pursuit 'Aikido'. And both groups are correct since Ueshiba represented both.

Oh, and just to keep things on topic, let me just say that there is no 'strength vs ki' - ki produces strength

Greg
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Old 06-19-2011, 07:31 AM   #293
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

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Greg Steckel wrote: View Post
I am having fun going back and forth with Graham and I love the guy for the way he handles his controversies in the forum. Also, I understand where he is coming from on the spiritual stuff - if that is that way he and others like to look at Aikido, that is great since Aikido does have a lot of spiritual stuff in it based on Ueshiba's teachings.

However, Aikido can also be a very effective martial system on a non spiritual level as well; which Ueshiba demonstrated very well in his early years. People in the pursuit of that skill have every right to call that 'Aikido' as do the spiritual people do to call their pursuit 'Aikido'. And both groups are correct since Ueshiba represented both.

Oh, and just to keep things on topic, let me just say that there is no 'strength vs ki' - ki produces strength

Greg
Indeed we have our path to follow and one should do the budo one thinks fits best. But O'sensei's words followed his techniques. So if we want to get closer to his techniques, we must also follow his words. Don't forget that in his mind everything is one, i I believe that he saw his spiritual teaching as being just as much Aikido as his technical teaching.

"Right use of Ki" produces strength.
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Old 06-19-2011, 08:03 AM   #294
Nicholas Eschenbruch
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
Hello Nicholas
I think most Aikido dojo in fact due function in that role, in various forms. but it wasn't that role or type of dojo that was being discussed.
When you think about it how many people want or need that kind of pressure in their hobby. I train with a lot people in Aikido, many if not most are the professional type, married, with kids, have full lives and are not too concerned with getting in a fight any time soon. They have a "My budo is mentally and physically stimulating enough for me...thank you very much." kind of attitude.
I see nothing wrong with that. Its healthy and fun. Almost all of us from Aikido to DR, to BJJ, to Judo are somewhere in the middle, self aware, and having fun. And not confused about the reality of their own choices.
The other postive aspects that function within that paradigm is the mental game of trying to pull something off, in balance, yes with cooperation, that does something very positive to people mentally. I know plenty of people that have talked about that aspect of aikido (and other budo) helping them in their daily lives.
So here you have a physical and mental practice that offers physical and mental challenges to people that brings value to their lives. Not bad eh? To me, those are not the people that fit Meik Skosses term of "Aikibunnies."

Oh, one other thing. No I don't think you have to go all out into MMA and are somehow less than if you don't. I've never thought that way.
To be fair, there -are- grades of pressure testing in budo though. Those who chose or choose to play in more pressured environments deserve as much credit for the realities of their choices. You hear just as much derision aimed at grapplers as some sort of meat head. When in fact grappling is done by the same broad range of people that do other budo. I guess I am more concerned that all of us have a balanced view of what we do.

In my previous post,I was (only) discussing that other extreme, lets call it far off the beam from average. They are not exclusive to aikio either. Those who's practice is "out there" in the first place and who actually think that hyper cooperative playing with movement, and defending with "spiritual ki" is going to work with someone trying to do you harm.
To me those are the aikibunnies
Cheers
Dan
Hi Dan,
thanks for the clarification, I hear you. I guess the more extreme varieties you describe I would just ignore.... maybe that's what I have partly done in this thread sorry.

To me, part of the beauty of doing Aikido is that any "spiritual" claim needs to be translated into movement and interaction if it is to hold true... that's why it's little use doing it over the internet.

I was not aware Meik Skoss coined the term "aikibunny"? I tend to proudly appropriate it, though with some irony I guess.

Have a nice day
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Old 06-19-2011, 08:23 AM   #295
gregstec
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Simon Kirk Sørensen wrote: View Post
Indeed we have our path to follow and one should do the budo one thinks fits best. But O'sensei's words followed his techniques. So if we want to get closer to his techniques, we must also follow his words. Don't forget that in his mind everything is one, i I believe that he saw his spiritual teaching as being just as much Aikido as his technical teaching.

"Right use of Ki" produces strength.
Actually, I think later in his life he was not doing much of any technical teachings and was mostly focused on his spiritual stuff.

To me the learning of technique is not the goal, but what makes any technique magical is; which IMO is Aiki as taught by the IS guys

Greg
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Old 06-19-2011, 08:30 AM   #296
DH
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Nicholas Eschenbruch wrote: View Post
Hi Dan,
thanks for the clarification, I hear you. I guess the more extreme varieties you describe I would just ignore.... maybe that's what I have partly done in this thread sorry.

To me, part of the beauty of doing Aikido is that any "spiritual" claim needs to be translated into movement and interaction if it is to hold true... that's why it's little use doing it over the internet.

I was not aware Meik Skoss coined the term "aikibunny"? I tend to proudly appropriate it, though with some irony I guess.

Have a nice day
Glad we are clear
Hey...Happy Fathers day!
I think there are some great aspects of Aikido and of taiji push hands that people don't get. Those who's only concern -are fighting- will never get. It is a mental/physical plane that changes both the body and your mental outlook. And no I don't think it applies and therefore has changed/helped everyone.
There is a quality to that mental/physical practice that infuses everything you do. I think it is what Ueshiba was on about. I have met Chinese grandmaster level guys who were at peace with themselves and filled the room with their presence. And against all of my earlier prejudices (again Ellis was right), I have now met Aikido teachers who are stellar people and exhibit that same open and calm demeaner.
Here's the clincher....I have also met and seen the same calm and openness toward life's adversity in.....seasoned grapplers...who's concerns were not only about fighting either!! Talk to some of the Gracies and you will quickly see it is lifestyle and outlook.

I think it is quite funny that I find myself stuck on both sides of that pendulum and agreeing with both parties. As you know I play with MMAers, and they poke fun of the bunnies/ I teach aikido people and they poke fun of the MMAers.
It's why Holland (and actually many of my seminars) are fun for me. Both groups could take the blinders off and see and train with each other and find common ground and new friendships. Awareness is usually a good thing.

All in all, I think having to maintain a balanced mental/physical state under pressure, puts you in the zone, a place that people inherently understand is beyond the norm. Being able to flush the cares of the world and go there...by choice...is truly one of lifes pleasures. it is definitely not unique to Aikido practice: Think of going all out with swords and Naginatas wizzing at your head in a prolonged ninety step kory kata designed to tax you, and you will understand the idea of the zone...think of being wrapped up by a guy who outweights you and is pressing you and you have room to move unless you make room, and you can envision that zone.... in a different art! People find it in different activities, some people look for increased pressure to maintain it within, but I have a hunch everyone is still experiencing that same state of being.
Cheers
Dan

Last edited by DH : 06-19-2011 at 08:45 AM.
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Old 06-19-2011, 08:38 AM   #297
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Greg Steckel wrote: View Post
Actually, I think later in his life he was not doing much of any technical teachings and was mostly focused on his spiritual stuff.

To me the learning of technique is not the goal, but what makes any technique magical is; which IMO is Aiki as taught by the IS guys

Greg
Yes aiki is fantastic, it makes the techniques work so much better. I'm beginning to learn it myself, though I think in a different way than with the IS people on this forum teach it.
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Old 06-19-2011, 08:44 AM   #298
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Dear all,
This question of strength /ki ,hard /soft is all related to a persons perspective/wants and needs.Each of us a motivated to do aikido for a multiplicity of reasons, maybe spiritual , social , martial, like to dress up in fancy clothes etc.[I like the fancy clothes[joking].
Now thousands of people run daily, play football , swim etc.But generally speaking not many people do these activities to reach the standard of an Olympic Gold medal winner.It does not mean the people do not get something out of their training, but 99% will never achieve 100% of their potential in Aikido.So in a nutshell I think Aikido can be all things to all men.No more no less.If people like the soft styles great, if some guys enjoy being like latter day samurai/kami kaze types again no big deal.That sums it up for me. The debate here reminds me of a dog trying to catch its own tail.
Cheers, Joe
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Old 06-19-2011, 08:46 AM   #299
gregstec
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post

All in all, I think having to maintain a balanced mental/physical state under pressure, puts you in the zone, a place that people inherently understand is beyond the norm. Being able to flush the cares of the world and go there...by choice...is truly one of lifes pleasures. it is definitely not unique to Aikido practice, try going all out with Swords and Naginatas wizzing at your head in a prolonged ninety step kory kata, and you will understand the idea of the zone in a different art! People find it in different activities, some people look for increased pressure to maintain it within, but I have a hunch everyone is still experiencing that same state of being.
Cheers
Dan
I do it on the boat - actually, I do most things on the boat nowadays since I spend most of my time there due to retirement

However, today I am home and have to go Zone myself with yard work

Greg
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Old 06-19-2011, 08:50 AM   #300
gregstec
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Simon Kirk Sørensen wrote: View Post
Yes aiki is fantastic, it makes the techniques work so much better. I'm beginning to learn it myself, though I think in a different way than with the IS people on this forum teach it.
Well, as long as you are open to learning new things, you will eventually find that which is right for you - sometimes that journey just does not take you where you thought it would

Greg
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