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Old 09-02-2002, 02:03 PM   #26
Brian H
Dojo: Aikido of Northern Virginia
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This all started with a bunch of pissing matches. Now that most people have put away their rulers, I think some pent up angst and such has been released. It is a big, complicated world out there and looking for ways to apply "aikido" to it is not a bad thing.

I have been practicing the "how" of aikido for a few years now. It has been nice to play around with the "why" with some new friends.

What good is a sword (or a mind) if you don't bring it out for a good polish it every-once-in-a-while.

By the way, what the hell is up with all the Bruce bashing? My mother taught me that, "if you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all."

Evil triumphs when good men do nothing
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Old 09-02-2002, 10:45 PM   #27
Ben_t_shodan
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Re: Philosophy Overkill

Quote:
Peter Rehse (PeterR) wrote:
Simple question but do your sensei sit you down and lecture on this stuff or is it made up as you go along.
Not taught by lecture but through observation and life. (also the occasional short conversation)

Your Uke

Ben

The one who knows the least knows it the loudest.
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Old 09-03-2002, 06:20 AM   #28
Bruce Baker
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They are learning, if not slowly.

Eventually, the bashers of these posts will become enlightened, and I am sure they will fall silent by vitue of fear their peers will bash them for speaking what they think is out the normal range of accepted training/ philosophy.

In the last couple of seminars I have attended, I have been encouraged by a number of people to continue with many lines of thought, although tone it down so that the general population is not insulted at their lack of experience.

As far as Philosophy overkill?

Well, if we all spoke more honestly, more of us would progress to finding better ways to come to the truth.

History tells us, the truth for one given time is not always the truth for all time.

If I have not found truths for all time, then let us delve further, push our philosophys around, and come up with with something more usefull than spitting contests.
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Old 09-03-2002, 07:16 PM   #29
Kevin Leavitt
 
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The last couple of post reminded my of something. I had been studying martial arts for about 5 years prior to going to Army Ranger School.

I was very excited at the opportunity to immerse myself in one of the ultimate warrior experiences that one can have in his lifetime. I viewed it as a kind of longterm 24 hour per day/7 days a week personal shugyo. I really hoped that the intense experience would enlighten me in someway.

About 4 weeks into it as I was laying freezing in the cold, damp mud in a florida swamp covered with ticks, chigger bites, poision ivy, having lossed about 30 lbs, and not having slept more than 2 hours a night over the past 7 days, and having walked probably about 100 miles that week with 100lbs of gear, I thought to myself "well self, are you enlightened?"

The resounding answer was "NO" this just sucked!

Anyway, the one thing I did discover as I lay on the ground with the butt of my weapon lodged in my cheek, that there are alot of little ants and creatures crawling all over the ground that we do not pay attention to. So, I concluded that even in the hectic 24 hour a day pace I was doing, I noticed things that I never saw before...it was the little things in life that matter, we need to take the time out to pay attention to them everyday!

To bring this back on the topic now....

I left that experience with some new knowledge and some lessons, but I did not become "one with the universe" as I had hoped.

What I did discover 5 years afterward is that I found myself thinking back to my experience and discovering the things that I did learn. It took me another five years to make sense of the lessons and things that I could not see in the moment.

My point is, that experience is the best teacher...sometimes the lessons are not apparent and take time to put together. Things that seem "stupid" and pointless to one person at that time, may be relevant later on in life.

Discussing philosophy and concepts here with a group of people who are, I assume living the budo ethos helps us sort through the lessons of life and experience. I find this forum very helpful in that process.

Anyway, that is my ephiphany for the day!

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Old 09-03-2002, 07:34 PM   #30
PeterR
 
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Quote:
Bruce Baker wrote:
They are learning, if not slowly.

Eventually, the bashers of these posts will become enlightened, and I am sure they will fall silent by vitue of fear their peers will bash them for speaking what they think is out the normal range of accepted training/ philosophy.
You know I have found my Budo teacher - I was sent to him, stayed, left for Canada and found myself coming back. These forums are great in that I don't need to sweat over language and ideas are exchanged - the latter is a good thing.

However, enlightenment is definately not what I seek on these boards. Education and exchange yes - but I have chosen/been chosen by my guide on the Michi.

Is that closed minded - not at all. There is no attempt to prevent me from exploring further afield but separating the wheat from the chaff is becoming easier.

Face it people - there is an awfull lot of chaff out there.
Quote:
Well, if we all spoke more honestly, more of us would progress to finding better ways to come to the truth.
I am being very honest. All view points are not created equal - the trick is understanding which ones are worth paying more attention to.

Controlling one's ego does not mean being dominated by someone else's.

You are not obliged to accept anything I say - it's just an opinion.

Last edited by PeterR : 09-03-2002 at 08:05 PM.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 09-04-2002, 01:35 PM   #31
opherdonchin
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Quote:
Peter wrote:
You know I have found my Budo teacher - I was sent to him, stayed, left for Canada and found myself coming back. These forums are great in that I don't need to sweat over language and ideas are exchanged - the latter is a good thing.

However, enlightenment is definately not what I seek on these boards. Education and exchange yes - but I have chosen/been chosen by my guide on the Michi.
So, if I understand you correctly, Peter, it is not that you object to philosophizing as a part of AiKiDo, but rather that you object to the quality of what's available on this forum.

Also, and I may be misunderstanding, there are some less philosophical topics where you are less sensitive to the quality of what's available here, or else you feel that on other issues the forum is more interesting.

Personally, I find these forums an exciting and unique opportunity to give and get feedback on ideas that really have no other place to go. These ideas have been developing in me slowly from when I first attended a class in AiKido, or perhaps even before that when my high school P.E. teacher assigned The Inner Game of Tennis as required reading for P.E. Some of my teachers have been the talking kind and never taught a technique with out discussing how it fit in with the Ai and the Ki. Other teachers have been technique focused, and some have even seemed to believe that the martial aspects of AiKiDo were the most interesting part of it. My thoughts have developed in harmony with some of the these teachers and in opposition to others. I have put off doing any real reading on the subject until just recently because I like to have my own ideas fairly clear before I really give myself over to a teacher (which may be why I do not have a whatdidyoucallit Budo teacher).

Now that I have started reading, however, I am sure that my perspective will continue to grow and change.

I'm pretty sure that I'm not different in this than many others.

Yours in Aiki
Opher
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Old 09-04-2002, 02:00 PM   #32
aikigreg
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Aikiweb gives the opportunity to come and learn more about the martial art that I love. Background, philosophy, techniques, and camaraderie with other Aikidoka. I get to speak with teachers I will likely never physically meet in my life. This has GOT to be one of the best tools of knowledge ever. Why, just this morning I looked at a GREAT link of the bokken kumitachi so I can practice. I would have not seen them otherwise without spending money on a video or a seminar.

Some of the stuff I don't agree with. I tenkan around that and use it as fuel for something more creative.

Bottom line: If O'sensei were posting here would you be making the same argument, or would you be logging on here to seek his knowledge like a thirsty man seeks water (or beer )?
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Old 09-04-2002, 04:16 PM   #33
deepsoup
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Quote:
Greg Gross (aikigreg) wrote:
Bottom line: If O'sensei were posting here would you be making the same argument, or would you be logging on here to seek his knowledge like a thirsty man seeks water (or beer )?
From what I've read about the great man, I'd mostly be scratching my head trying to work out what on earth he's talking about, and I'd usually go away completely baffled!

Sean

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Old 09-04-2002, 11:41 PM   #34
PeterR
 
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Quote:
Greg Gross (aikigreg) wrote:
Bottom line: If O'sensei were posting here would you be making the same argument, or would you be logging on here to seek his knowledge like a thirsty man seeks water (or beer )?
Well he's not and that's actually quite germain to my point. If he were on here would there be a large number of people telling him what Aiki really was.

You are right this is a great resource. There are people who have spent a lot of time on the mat (notice how they seem to be chased into their own little forum), some who can read the words of the founder in their original and have enough understanding of the culture not to go off half cocked, there are others who bring their experience from outside (Dave and Kevin are a real pleasure to read at the moment) and try to apply it to their Aikido. All this is good and why I keep coming back.

Yet at the time I shot my mouth off (its quieted down since them) there were all sorts of attempts to hijack Aikido to justify political and personal views.

My own view is very simple.

Aikido is not all inclusive. It may flex but you can not bend and mold it into something it is not. Please tell us what Aikido means to you and how it affects your life. That is sharing the journey. Telling me which branch to take is not.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 09-05-2002, 02:59 AM   #35
mike lee
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the demons within

Quote:
... there were all sorts of attempts to hijack Aikido to justify political and personal views.
I think it was a conspiracy. In fact, I'm sure it was.

I'd like to see someone express their "non-personal" views!
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Old 09-05-2002, 03:16 AM   #36
PeterR
 
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Hi Mike;

Now don't mis-quote - I said justify. Everything I express here is a personal view.

No thought of conspiricy either - I just view the michi as essentially insular.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 09-05-2002, 10:41 AM   #37
aikigreg
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Quote:
Peter Rehse (PeterR) wrote:
Yet at the time I shot my mouth off (its quieted down since them) there were all sorts of attempts to hijack Aikido to justify political and personal views.

My own view is very simple.

Aikido is not all inclusive. It may flex but you can not bend and mold it into something it is not. Please tell us what Aikido means to you and how it affects your life. That is sharing the journey. Telling me which branch to take is not.
I just wanted to make clear I wasn't singling you out or anything, I'm simply pointing out that Aikiweb is a great resource and should be used as a tool to increase your knowledge. Some of it is less useful than others. By the way, I agree completely with your second paragraph.

As to what Aikido means to me: Everything. How it effects my life: In every way I let it.

Peace out, homie.
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Old 09-08-2002, 11:50 PM   #38
PhilJ
 
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Talking

As a self-recognized chronic blabbermouth, this is a good place for me to babble.

My sensei once told me something his buddhist neighbor said, "Words are but farts from the lips." It's easy for ANYONE to parrot out words and phrases we've heard (like that), and we sometimes remember them (for better or worse) simply because they sound cool or have affected us more deeply. If you can paraphrase in your own words what you've read, or demonstrate those words in action, you may have an actual understanding of those words.

That said, I've always mentioned to students that one of the mose interesting facets of aikido is that it is always changing. Not implicitly for good or bad, mind you, but it's always in a state of flux. The basic properties of the universe don't change; the only other reason aikido changes (that I can think of) is because of the people. This seems natural. EVERYONE here has their own spin on aikido, and that is just peachy.

We are our own best crap detector. PeterR, you have the benefit of aikido training, and that helps you understand what is "truth" and what isn't -- I use my training to discover the meanings of these words. This is like that old classic, "Is the glass half-empty or half-full?" Someone from either side can come in, answer, and sound like a genius. ANYONE can do that.

But what's the truth of the matter? Should aikido care about perception? If aikido is based on the universe and its interactions, what kind of subjectivity could the universe have on, say, a banana? Is it ripe? Is it tasty? Will that big gorilla over there eat it because of how green it is? Do the rings of Saturn care? How about the hydrogen atoms in the Sun?

And now you know why I'm a confessed lip-farter Isn't this fun folks?? I need to shut up and train too sometimes.

Phillip Johnson
Enso Aikido Dojo, Burnsville, MN
An Aikido Bukou Dojo
http://www.aikidobukou.com
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Old 09-09-2002, 11:46 AM   #39
Kevin Leavitt
 
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I wonder in the "old days" in Japan, after training in the dojo, if students sat around and sipped tea and discussed the same type of issues we discuss here today?

I think it is great that we have this medium.

In my dojo, everyone's lives are too busy and complicated nowadays to do this, we go to class practice Aikido and go home.

I find this same change in the military as well. It used to be that soldiers would work hard during the duty day, then go to the NCO or Officer's club for beer and what not, and disscuss this kind of stuff. Today, soldiers go home to be with their families and what not.

While I think it is good we are so active and busy, sometimes I think there is a loss to really sitting down and talking with people in our busy society.

I think forums like this are a good way to get back to this.

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Old 09-09-2002, 06:35 PM   #40
PeterR
 
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Quote:
Kevin Leavitt wrote:
I wonder in the "old days" in Japan, after training in the dojo, if students sat around and sipped tea and discussed the same type of issues we discuss here today?
My point Kevin is that in the "new days" they don't either. What they discuss is techniques, injuries, what a good/bad class, how so and so has an attitude problem and did you see the new waitress.
Quote:
I think it is great that we have this medium.
I agree - but all in context. I have yet to understand Aiki much less apply it to political thought. Discuss politics sure - but when you start talking about "Aiki truths" - the Misuse of Aikido II thread is going strong I see - exactly what I'm talking about.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 09-09-2002, 06:45 PM   #41
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Once in a while, my sensei speak of the philosophies of aikido. Often the techniques themselves can inspire philosophical revelations. Most of where I gather the philosophies of aikido, however, is from books on the subject.

Drew
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Old 09-10-2002, 02:50 AM   #42
mike lee
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an attitude problem

Quote:
... how so and so has an attitude problem ...
I wonder who that could be?
Quote:
I agree - but all in context.
And who shall become the high judge of context?
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Old 09-10-2002, 05:19 AM   #43
Brian H
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Quote:
Drew Gardner (Suru) wrote:
Once in a while, my sensei speak of the philosophies of aikido. Often the techniques themselves can inspire philosophical revelations. Most of where I gather the philosophies of aikido, however, is from books on the subject.

Drew
And we are publishing little "books" every time we post.

Evil triumphs when good men do nothing
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Old 09-10-2002, 06:31 PM   #44
Kevin Leavitt
 
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I'm with you Peter.

I have said it many times, you can apply aiki principles to change yourself and your perspective, which can influence how you respond or react to the world (even vote in politics)...but to try and apply the concepts on a "macro" basis to politics does not work.

For example, Trying to discuss if it is "aiki" or not to attack Iraq is pointless to me.

What is not pointless though is discussing ways we can improve ourselves and set the example for others to follow so we can somehow change the world one person at a time, even if it is idealisitc.

Is this not an "aiki" ideal or philosophy?

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Old 09-10-2002, 07:37 PM   #45
PeterR
 
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Hi Kevin;

I guess I'm sounding more extreme then I intend but it is really as simple as a reductionist view versus an expansionist.

Based on my exposure here and perhaps (probably) my personal inclination I tend to be reductionist. What prompted the original post was noticing that the most blatent expansionist views of what Aiki is tend to come from outside Japan.
Quote:
Kevin Leavitt wrote:
I have said it many times, you can apply aiki principles to change yourself and your perspective, which can influence how you respond or react to the world (even vote in politics)...but to try and apply the concepts on a "macro" basis to politics does not work.

For example, Trying to discuss if it is "aiki" or not to attack Iraq is pointless to me.
As I said earlier I still have trouble understanding aiki principles in a physical sense much less philosophical. Still I find myself agreeing with you so perhaps we have a common incling.
Quote:
What is not pointless though is discussing ways we can improve ourselves and set the example for others to follow so we can somehow change the world one person at a time, even if it is idealisitc.

Is this not an "aiki" ideal or philosophy?
Well my view of things has changed since I've started Aikido but is that the "Aiki" or me becoming older and wiser (leave it alone). Please understand that my Aikido is not all about blending and harmonizing (in the Western sense) either so again the problem of the physical/philosophical meaning of Aiki.

I love discussing philosophy and really have no problem with it being discussed here (I've said this many times but still some suggest I am trying to shut it down or moderate it) but I do have a problem with pronouncements of the "Aiki way". My burden I suppose - still - well my opinion is clear.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 09-10-2002, 08:48 PM   #46
PeterR
 
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Peter Goldsbury has just posted a very interesting and I think relevant (to this thread) post on the Aikido Journal bulletin board. Actually the whole thread is pretty good.

http://65.119.177.201/cgi-bin/ubb/ul...7&t=000029&p=3

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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