Welcome to AikiWeb Aikido Information
AikiWeb: The Source for Aikido Information
AikiWeb's principal purpose is to serve the Internet community as a repository and dissemination point for aikido information.

Sections
home
aikido articles
columns

Discussions
forums
aikiblogs

Databases
dojo search
seminars
image gallery
supplies
links directory

Reviews
book reviews
video reviews
dvd reviews
equip. reviews

News
submit
archive

Miscellaneous
newsletter
rss feeds
polls
about

Follow us on



Home > AikiWeb Aikido Forums
Go Back   AikiWeb Aikido Forums > General

Hello and thank you for visiting AikiWeb, the world's most active online Aikido community! This site is home to over 22,000 aikido practitioners from around the world and covers a wide range of aikido topics including techniques, philosophy, history, humor, beginner issues, the marketplace, and more.

If you wish to join in the discussions or use the other advanced features available, you will need to register first. Registration is absolutely free and takes only a few minutes to complete so sign up today!

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 11-30-2011, 12:33 AM   #51
Carl Thompson
 
Carl Thompson's Avatar
Location: Kasama
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 453
Japan
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

Quote:
Katherine Derbyshire wrote: View Post
Which also suggests that the people who were the closest students of Ueshiba Sensei are not necessarily the ones most likely to have "the goods." Is there a list of people who argued with him and stormed out of the dojo in disgust? Or perhaps we should look at the later uchi-deshi, who weren't as far along in their training when he died and were thus thrown back on their own resources.

Katherine
Well if we're talking about people (as in plural) who got chances (more than one opportunity for the Founder to pass on his knowledge), there is another important issue that underlies a lot of these debates: That is whether or not the founder was actually any good at teaching. Related to this is the idea that he didn't care if his art got passed on.

Was he a "great teacher" (an "Osensei") only because he provided the subject to be taught? In other words, I'm asking if he didn't understand basic teaching methods or was too crazy to stick to them. Or did he actually have some degree of pedagogical skill? In the latter case, did he deliberately choose not to use it in order to keep the goods to himself?

Carl
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 01:04 AM   #52
David Yap
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 561
Malaysia
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

Beside Iwama, O sensei also taught in Osaka and Shingu after WWII..

The fact that he requested/suggested that a dojo be built in Osaka in 1951 would have a bearing on this thread - meaning that he had an additional "playground"

http://www.aikidojournal.com/article.php?articleID=366

David Y
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 08:33 AM   #53
DH
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 3,394
United_States
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

Lest we be seen as bashing Kisshomaru....
It was well known that Ueshiba was seemingly uninterested in organizational, mundane matters, was uninterested in any standardized testing. By all accounts he even seemed to like to poke fun at the whole notion of a ranking system by spuriously awarding ranks far without attachment to any order.

The initial readings of his habits seem as if he was having fun, enjoying his research and training, and was not very concerned with day to day affairs. Many of those interviewed expressed concerns of how he would get by. Against this backdrop you had a post war mess of a building, all the deshi spread to the four winds, and a son who was never really interested in the art that much left to pick up the pieces.
This lack of concern for personal matters, did not prevent Ueshiba from properly setting things up for himself when the opportunity arose. Interestingly, while people continue to this very day to harangue the memory of Takeda as a type obsessed with money, here we see yet another example of Ueshiba doing much the same thing.
A brief snippet of the interview, well worth the read, and while you are there sign up for a membership and learn about your art.
Quote:
At first I thought it was strange when O-Sensei told me to gather together persons only from rich families but then the monthly fee was really high. Although the fee was five yen, we had to set aside at least ten yen for this and that.

How much would it be in today's money?

It was a period in which one earned about two yen for one day's labor.
Now this appears on the surface to be as money grubbing as the worst sideswipes taken at Takeda. But we need to consider the preamble to this discussion of high fees. Establishing a dojo, quite simply cost a lot of money then: Here is Tanaka's reasoning with his statements rearranged a bit to flow more smoothly
Quote:
It only took about ten days since I knew Inoue Sensei was coming to stay. The house I found had two stories which was good, but the rent was high. I think I paid 25 Yen (about $500 to $600 in today's money) to rent that house! (edited insert out of order) It was no wonder O-Sensei told me to gather together only those from rich families. Since the monthly fee was high, people from poor families could not join. I think I got together about 11 people.
And we can place that in context of Dobson's story of hearing shouting around the corner, and him rounding the corner to find O sensei upbraiding a vendor over his prices. O sensei looked at Terry and said "What did you expect a saint?"
How is this any different than the damning stories of Takeda yelling at Cab drivers over the same thing?
Perhaps a more balanced approach can be offered concerning this idea of fees and money in general. Money is viewed, discussed, and handled much differently by the poor, the middle and the wealthy. When you have no money or little of it, being focused on retaining what you have, having a roof over your head and eating tonight takes on a different level of priority then those sitting pretty are willing to address. Call it a let them eat cake view of the world by modern Suburban commandos.

Kisshomaru
Now, in the history of budo, it is fairly well known that many sons just don't measure up to the giants their fathers were. Such was the case with Kisshomaru. His organization, his codifying and simplifying to create a system, his navigating through some rather titanic personalities, his picking and supporting certain players is certainly laudable. Without his organizational abilities, I wonder what we would be seeing as aikido today. I am sure that can be considered either good or bad, depending on your view.
I think that:
* Without his Dad there was no Aikido/ with only his Dad there might not have been much of a future for aikido.
* Without Kisshomaru there would have been no codifying and organizing-one might say that aikido would be drastically different. With only Kisshomaru, there would be only a watered down, political machine in the name of his father.

Dan
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 08:56 AM   #54
DH
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 3,394
United_States
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

Also worthy of note in that interview is this fellow stating that Ueshiba stayed with him for a year and half in 51 with Ueshiba only returning to visit his wife, for a total of 8 months of Ueshiba living with him in Osaka!!Ellis noted accounts of Ueshiba also showing up later in life at the Kodokan to do Judo...well..to be Ueshiba doing judo.
I guess my own questions would be:
Seeing how so many deshi were apparently drawing his bath and bathing him and training with him everyday at hombu...cough. How could Ueshiba be in Osaka for so long. Unless of course he could be in two places at once?

Ueshiba's detachment..."issues?"
Ellis makes a compelling case for Takeda's issues and constant movement. Couldn't Ueshiba's constant disappearing and not wanting to have a close relationship with his students-as reported here and elsewhere, and protracted absences from his family, be seen as some sort of phycological disorder, just like Takeda? Ueshiba's had his own bizzare behavior. And facing a firing squad and God knows what else in his life might have contributed to his own "detachment." Other than the one instance of Takeda being woken from his sleep and stabbing out in the dark...only to hit his son in the shoulder, how is it any different?

Maybe there is a more mundane understanding to be had here. More of a normal course of events for some Budo men at that time.
With Takeda, we still have the issues of possible PTSD. Ellis and I have discussed this as well. PTSD, does funny things. I have quite few friends who changed markedly. Takeda saw war at a young age, killed bandits (quite literally). Was attacked by 60 + constructions workers, killed a dozen and wounded many others and was almost killed himself. In and of itself, quite an interesting story that could be told, but in and of itself quite an example of PTSD and its effects.
I think it is incumbent on us to try to understand a different time, a different culture-hence different norms, a different level of attachment and treatment of what "family" was, and how hard scrabble it was just to survive on one's own means. To often we judge, by what we are familiar with.
Dan

Last edited by DH : 11-30-2011 at 09:10 AM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 09:27 AM   #55
TheMiddleRoad
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 2
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

Quote:
David Yap wrote: View Post
Beside Iwama, O sensei also taught in Osaka and Shingu after WWII..

The fact that he requested/suggested that a dojo be built in Osaka in 1951 would have a bearing on this thread - meaning that he had an additional "playground"

http://www.aikidojournal.com/article.php?articleID=366

David Y
The Suita Dojo in Osaka. Interesting that it not been mentioned until now. Sometimes is convenient for anyone with agenda to leave it out of the thinking. Maybe the blinders are not just for the horses.If Osaka dojo could talk for itself. How many theories from here today would be more known as too revising of real history.

Many here say O-Sensei didn't teach after the war? No uchideshi after the war? O-Sensei retired to Iwama after the war? very interesting ideas, indeed. When I read the interview of Stanley Pranin, I perhaps find answers that say otherwise things. Maybe the Hombu Dojo not so Hombu, after all.. Maybe thinking people think for themselves and not have other people think for them. Best to look at signpost on the road which O-Sensei traveled. I once heard that O-Sensei drew a map for some to use to follow him. Of course, I also remember one other item i heard recently, "believe half of what you see and none of what you hear or read."

Anyway. here is Aikidos Journal Interviews and some sections from them.

http://blog.aikidojournal.com/2011/0...sei-on-may-18/
Seiseki Abe Sensei was one of the closest students of Aikido Founder Morihei Ueshiba of the postwar period.

http://www.aikidojournal.com/article?articleID=151

So, O-Sensei practiced misogi even before he entered the Omoto religion. I wonder when it was that Ueshiba Sensei actually began this practice.

Well, I have never heard that exactly, but I have been with him on occasions when genuine misogi had taken place. There was a time when O-Sensei and I were invited to the place of a certain Shinto priest who lives deep in the mountains, up behind the city of Yokkaichi. This priest became a kyoshi (licensed instructor) when Sensei died. Anyway, there is a waterfall there. I have a picture of O-Sensei doing chinkon under the falls, which I still have at my home. Since he was nude, it was a little inappropriate to snap the picture, so I keep it displayed in a dark corner. (laughter)

As far as the Aikido he practiced in his later years, even young girls, old people and children could do them. That is a big difference. I suppose you could say that it was a difference in the severity or the strictness of the training. Before the war, it was severity and strong technique, as opposed to the (kind of) techniques that invigorate our partners as we have now. In other words, those powerful techniques, at least in O-Sensei's case, embraced more than just the power to injure someone. He had a realization (satori) of superb technique that gave life to his training partner. I think this is something truly splendid.

I believe that the reason that Aikido has become so popular today is precisely because it is not simply another martial technique. It goes beyond, and gives life. It is, in fact, a harmonious unification with the Great Universe -- a really wonderful thing.

To what extent do you think that Ueshiba Sensei was influenced by the Omoto religion?

Do you mean influenced religiously by Omoto? That is hard to say. The greatest influences from this source are (the concept of) kotodama and the Kojiki. The brilliant Kojiki and the techniques that O-Sensei created were inseparably connected. When O-Sensei spoke about Kojiki, he was not speaking in terms of literary or scholastic explanations. For him, the Kojiki was read in terms of kotodama (the science of the intrinsic power of the spoken word).

In fact, the first time I ever spoke to Seagal Sensei, we discussed the Kojiki. He asked me various questions that pinpointed some of the Kojiki's most pertinent parts -- the kind of questions that most Japanese don't know enough to ask about. I respect him for that. If one were to follow this kind of thought a little further, I think that it would tie in with Omoto

http://www.aikidojournal.com/article?articleID=656
You once remarked that "the essence of calligraphy lies in kokyu. (lit. breath)." Is this the same sort of kokyu we find in aikido?

The very same.

This brings to mind the question, "What exactly are we teaching when teach calligraphy?" We teach form and how to draw the characters, of course, but I think if we are unable to teach a certain "something more," then the life will go out of calligraphy and it will no longer interest people.

That "something more" is very important, then, isn't it?
It is indeed. Unfortunately, although calligraphy is quite popular these days, I have a feeling that most of it fails to offer the potential to discover this "something more."
Would you say this is something you have to develop on your own, through sincere practice and by working through your own process?

Yes, and once you have it, you can start feeling out the range of your own skills by executing physically large pieces or by passing on what you have learned —what you have gleaned— to the next generation. In other words, at that point your activities become focused on either challenging yourself through your works or placing yourself in a middle position from which to transmit what you have to others. Those are the two paths.

How was it that Morihei Sensei came to take up calligraphy?
I think he actually did a bit even before we met, although I doubt many of those works remain.
In 1954,I accompanied Morihei Sensei to Shingu to attend the opening of Michio Hikitsuchi's dojo there. We stayed for about a month, and since Morihei Sensei hated seeing people idle he told me to teach calligraphy in between aikido classes. A photographer by the name of Kubo got together a group of students and suddenly I found myself with a part-time job!

Morihei Sensei would watch me teaching like that and gradually began to take an interest himself. Before I knew it he saying, "Well, perhaps I'll do a few myself…"The first thing he brushed was the word "aiki," although I'm not sure where that particular piece is now.

After we returned from Shingu he started coming to my home and would always spend whole days practicing calligraphy. That seemed to be his greatest joy.

5 - UCHIDESHI IN MY OWN HOME
Did you begin your aikido career as an uchideshi?

Yes, in a way, but actually it was Morihei Sensei who would come to my home —to practice calligraphy, as I mentioned— instead of the other way around. This put me in the rather unusual position of being uchideshi in my own home! We had a special room set aside for him, and it was there that we developed our relationship as student and teacher. Nonetheless, it was very much an old-style student-teacher relationship rooted in strict bushido attitudes. The discipline was not externally imposed, however, but came rather from the attitudes and behaviors to which any uchideshi naturally subjects himself out of a desire to serve his teacher. This is really the only way to truly grasp and absorb your teacher's "kokyu." Living with your teacher under the same roof twenty-four hours a day gives you access not only to his technical abilities, but also to an understanding of the very way he lives and breathes, his way of life and his rhythms. It is an opportunity to train and discipline your ki, and in the process to know all of the sides of your teacher. Morihei Sensei used to visit for a week or ten days at a time, and being in such close contact with his
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 09:49 AM   #56
raul rodrigo
Location: Quezon City
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 777
Philippines
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

Quote:
Ian Keane wrote: View Post
Not trying to be contentious, but the fact that he promoted others 10th dan sort of bolsters my argument, which is that, if Saito had a truer grasp of the art as O-sensei taught it, then why didn't O-sensei give him the recognition he extended to Tohei, Suenaka and others? And if rank and licenses really didn't matter to him, why did he bother granting them?
Yasuo Kobayashi, uchideshi of that era and 8th dan, recalled: "About this time there were the following incidents. People came from the countryside suddenly demanding an Aikido 10th dan license. This was because in the old days, when O-Sensei was teaching in the local areas, he would notice someone who, for just a moment, seemed to understand, and he'd say, "Oh, this guy's got it. I'll give him a 10th dan."" It seemed he would easily say things like, "You're great! Let's make you a 9th dan,"" to people who took him at his word, even though they may bave been only a 3rd or 4th dan. That was one face of O-Sensei. He'd just say something like, "You're a 9th dan or 10th dan,"" When I was younger, O-Sensei told me, too, many times, that I was a 9th or 10th dan. The other uchideshi were also "promoted" to 9th or 10th dan many times."
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 10:03 AM   #57
Chris Li
 
Chris Li's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido Sangenkai
Location: Honolulu, Hawaii
Join Date: Dec 2000
Posts: 3,079
United_States
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

Quote:
Raul Rodrigo wrote: View Post
Yasuo Kobayashi, uchideshi of that era and 8th dan, recalled: "About this time there were the following incidents. People came from the countryside suddenly demanding an Aikido 10th dan license. This was because in the old days, when O-Sensei was teaching in the local areas, he would notice someone who, for just a moment, seemed to understand, and he'd say, "Oh, this guy's got it. I'll give him a 10th dan."" It seemed he would easily say things like, "You're great! Let's make you a 9th dan,"" to people who took him at his word, even though they may bave been only a 3rd or 4th dan. That was one face of O-Sensei. He'd just say something like, "You're a 9th dan or 10th dan,"" When I was younger, O-Sensei told me, too, many times, that I was a 9th or 10th dan. The other uchideshi were also "promoted" to 9th or 10th dan many times."
There was a person in the remote countryside who was very proud of a certificate from Ueshiba naming him the highest Shihan in that area - John (Stevens) made a comment like "Isn't that a little bit like being the Shihan of the North Pole?" - but the guy didn't seem to appreciate the humor

Best,

Chris

  Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 11:16 AM   #58
Ken McGrew
Dojo: Aikido at UAB
Location: Birmingham, Alabama
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 202
United_States
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

Quote:
David Yap wrote: View Post
Beside Iwama, O sensei also taught in Osaka and Shingu after WWII..

The fact that he requested/suggested that a dojo be built in Osaka in 1951 would have a bearing on this thread - meaning that he had an additional "playground"

http://www.aikidojournal.com/article.php?articleID=366

David Y
Most importantly, this interview is yet another account that states that O Sensei personally taught Aikido, on the mat as it were. He was not, therefore, retired after 1941.
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 11:28 AM   #59
Chris Li
 
Chris Li's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido Sangenkai
Location: Honolulu, Hawaii
Join Date: Dec 2000
Posts: 3,079
United_States
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

Quote:
Ken McGrew wrote: View Post
Most importantly, this interview is yet another account that states that O Sensei personally taught Aikido, on the mat as it were. He was not, therefore, retired after 1941.
You mean this part?

Did O-Sensei himself teach?
Yes, he also taught. The dojo used to be downstairs. There was a room next to the dojo and O-Sensei used to sit there and watch us practice. He sometimes came out of the room and instructed us.

Anyway, it's not a yes/no thing - it concerns how much he taught, what he taught, and how he taught it.

Best,

Chris

  Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 12:10 PM   #60
Demetrio Cereijo
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 1,915
Spain
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

Quote:
Ken McGrew wrote: View Post
Question is do you really want to correct a historical inaccuracy or just silence critics on an internet forum?
I'd bet historical accuracy (following academic standards) would cause more damage to aikido than what Pranin has made public.

  Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 12:32 PM   #61
Marc Abrams
Dojo: Aikido Arts of Shin Budo Kai/ Bedford Hills, New York
Location: New York
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 1,302
United_States
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

Unfortunately, there are some people who stubbornly cling to their perceptions, despite the preponderance of information otherwise..... They tend to muck up threads that try and advance our knowledge because they cannot move beyond what they already think that they know.

This thread was not designed to uncover the gilding that occurs with many people's recounting of history. This thread was not designed to diminish the enormous contributions that significant people have made in helping our art. This thread was not designed to prop up some, while knocking down others.

This thread was to help highlight the situation that we find ourselves in today.
Quote:
Gerardo Torres wrote: View Post
As Marc Abrams suggested, it's less imperative to discuss lineages thatn it is to concentrate on what the Founder was really doing and work to replicate it.
This point that Gerardo made is where I wanted the next step of this thread to go and should hopefully be our focus in our own training. Due to the idiosyncrasies of O'Sensei (not pathologically paranoid like I believe Takeda Sensei was), due to changes in pre-war and post-war Japan, due to a host of other circumstances, it is practically impossible to assert that O'Sensei passed on all that he knew in any manner, shape or form, to any one of his students (including his son). It behooves any one of us not to look inside and outside of our art in order to try and re-create to the best of our abilities that with which we will most likely never be able to re-create. O'Sensei was a remarkable personality, filled with quirks, positives and negatives. He was a remarkable martial artist who unfortunately did not see to it that all that he knew was passed on. We have a number of people still alive today who did learn from O'Sensei, each taking what they could. We have a number of people outside of our art (Dan, Ark, Mike, etc.) who can open our eyes to things that we can put back into our art to bring the art closer to what the founder was doing. Myopic idol worship of some people and the worship of some ideas that exist best in philosophy and not in reality, are sadly too common.

If we want to progress, while raising the over-all level of our art, we need to be honest with ourselves and recognize that what we "know" is serving more to interfere with our ability to learn more about our art, than it is in helping us better the art that so many of us love and have dedicated our lives to understanding and teaching.

Marc Abrams
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 01:01 PM   #62
graham christian
Dojo: golden center aikido-highgate
Location: london
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,697
England
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

O'Sensei, Master Teacher. Makes sense to me. What's the problem?

If you want to study his teaching methods then I would say study them only, not what he didn't do or where he was or even how often. All teachers have their way of teaching and their own methods so anyone who says 'he just did whatever came to mind ' or such things obviously didn't get his method of teaching or are being misunderstood by those reading those comments.

Why the question in the first place anyway? Someone trying to prove something?

It's very simple to understand O'Senseis scene with regards to teaching his art but to do so you have to recognise what the scene was in the first place.

He was in big demand. His aikibudo then aikido was in big demand. This presents a problem. You can't be in two places or twenty places at once.

Thus, as the founder, or if you like the leader, you delegate. Delegate and organise. You now become the teacher of teachers who may then go out and represent. Simple really.

Then we may look again and see what parts of organisation was delegated to whom. He's the boss, he delegates. Meanwhile he carries on with the parts he specializes in. In his case this would be research and developement and improvement and the passing on of that. Simple really.

Now, he had one other problem too. People were too far behind him to understand what he had to say in it's fullness so when he saw one person who grasped or had a grasp of one aspect necessary to it's dissemination then that person would be promoted so that at least that aspect would be out there. And so on.

So this nonsense about if this or if that then you would have people beating down your door isn't real. No one really wants that unless they are some super ego and want to end up a showman putting on performances three times a night to some adoring audience.

No, anyone of any worth would be more interested in getting their message out, that's all. Their way.

Now add to that the next factor. Once you do this you must remember you are dealing with human beings. Oh dear.

Regards.G.

Last edited by graham christian : 11-30-2011 at 01:03 PM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 01:12 PM   #63
kewms
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 991
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

Quote:
Marc Abrams wrote: View Post
Due to the idiosyncrasies of O'Sensei (not pathologically paranoid like I believe Takeda Sensei was), due to changes in pre-war and post-war Japan, due to a host of other circumstances, it is practically impossible to assert that O'Sensei passed on all that he knew in any manner, shape or form, to any one of his students (including his son).
I'm reminded of an interview with Threadgill Sensei that I read a couple of months ago. (http://www.aikidojournal.com/article...light=Takamura) He explained (paraphrasing) that even in a koryu, it is impossible for any teacher to pass down everything he knows. No matter how excellent the teacher or how diligent the student, one lifetime is never enough.

It is therefore one of the duties of each headmaster to add the results of his own studies back into the tradition. Every generation loses some things, but rediscovers others, and that's how the art survives.

The claim that all of Ueshiba Sensei's aikido was passed down (to anyone), and therefore our modern training as defined by his students (however capable) cannot be questioned is fundamentally bad for the long term health of our art.

Katherine
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-30-2011, 02:07 PM   #64
mathewjgano
 
mathewjgano's Avatar
Dojo: Tsubaki Kannagara Jinja Aikidojo; Himeji Shodokan Dojo
Location: Renton
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 2,113
United_States
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

Quote:
Katherine Derbyshire wrote: View Post
I'm reminded of an interview with Threadgill Sensei that I read a couple of months ago. (http://www.aikidojournal.com/article...light=Takamura) He explained (paraphrasing) that even in a koryu, it is impossible for any teacher to pass down everything he knows. No matter how excellent the teacher or how diligent the student, one lifetime is never enough.

It is therefore one of the duties of each headmaster to add the results of his own studies back into the tradition. Every generation loses some things, but rediscovers others, and that's how the art survives.

The claim that all of Ueshiba Sensei's aikido was passed down (to anyone), and therefore our modern training as defined by his students (however capable) cannot be questioned is fundamentally bad for the long term health of our art.

Katherine
I really enjoyed this point! Even if O Sensei only taught in one location with one group of people, chances are good there would have been different kinds of uptake/transmission; different emphases would manifest.

Also, I wonder how much of the numbers issues simply has to do with loose language styles. I mean, the appeal to round numbers has been used for one thousand years. Now, pardon me while I go get my 40 winks.
Take care,
Matt

Gambarimashyo!
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2011, 12:24 PM   #65
kewms
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 991
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.

If the student isn't ready, the teacher could be standing right in front of them and they'd never know it.

We all see Ueshiba Sensei's students as they are now. It's easy to forget that they were once beginners too. Can we really blame a bunch of athletic men in their twenties for not really "getting" everything the old man was rambling about? Would we really expect them to have the same understanding that their older selves can demonstrate?

Katherine
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2011, 02:13 PM   #66
akiy
 
akiy's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 5,850
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

Folks, let's keep the discussions focused on talking about the topic rather than the personal history or details of people behind the topic.

-- Jun

Please help support AikiWeb -- become an AikiWeb Contributing Member!
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2011, 03:39 PM   #67
akiy
 
akiy's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 5,850
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

The posts regarding Saotome Sensei's training history have been moved to a new thread:

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=20596

-- Jun

Please help support AikiWeb -- become an AikiWeb Contributing Member!
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2011, 12:22 PM   #68
Chuck Clark
 
Chuck Clark's Avatar
Dojo: Jiyushinkan
Location: Monroe, Washington
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 1,134
United_States
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

Quote:
Katherine Derbyshire wrote: View Post
I'm reminded of an interview with Threadgill Sensei that I read a couple of months ago. (http://www.aikidojournal.com/article...light=Takamura) He explained (paraphrasing) that even in a koryu, it is impossible for any teacher to pass down everything he knows. No matter how excellent the teacher or how diligent the student, one lifetime is never enough.

It is therefore one of the duties of each headmaster to add the results of his own studies back into the tradition. Every generation loses some things, but rediscovers others, and that's how the art survives.
I agree with Toby Threadgill Sensei. The following may be seen as off-topic, but I don't think so. I've been around for quite awhile, and I've been asked "what made you pick your teachers?"...

Well, in the beginning, I was a youngster and hung around whoever seemed to know what I wanted to know. By the time I was fourteen, I'd gotten enough experience that I became pretty selective. I learned a lot from a number of teachers, mostly good principles and also some lessons that were hard learned from negative aspects of teachers' qualities and actions. All of these lessons are necessary I think. As I got into my twenties I began to really see that I not only wanted solid training in physical aspects of budo, but I wanted also the spiritual qualities also. I then realized that the teachers I wanted to spend my time with and learn all I could from them were teaching students, who could learn, how to be their own teachers. This meant to always be looking for more... refining, polishing, and always hungry for a wider, deeper, finer view and scale... I'm still doing that after 58 years of active practice. At this point, I'm understanding that the hunger for more will not go away, but the knowledge that 'right now is okay' is what is real. I've heard a similar story about Shimizu Sensei, the last headmaster of Shinto Muso ryu when he was close to death. Someone asked him what was on his mind... his answer was, "I wish I could get my left hontei uchi to feel as good as my right hontei uchi." (hontei uchi is the basic/fundamental strike with a jo). I think that's the answer... and I'm still trying to help students learn how to be their own teachers... not a copy or model of their teacher/s.

I think it's important to learn about the histories of teachers and learn from all aspects of their practice and life so we can take complete authority of our own practice. Possibly, for those of us that are instructors and teachers, some of our students will learn how to teach others to be their own teacher.

Those Japanese teachers who wanted students to "really get it" would never articulate something of this nature. You must steal it from them while being smart enough to understand what it is to be still wanting to get your basic natural posture, movement, kihon, etc. better as you near death. All while understanding that each breath is one less...

Best regards,

Last edited by akiy : 12-02-2011 at 02:30 PM. Reason: Fixed quote tag

Chuck Clark
Jiyushinkai Aikibudo
www.jiyushinkai.org
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-04-2011, 11:54 AM   #69
Jim Sorrentino
  AikiWeb Forums Contributing Member
 
Jim Sorrentino's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido of Northern Virginia, Aikido Shobukan Dojo
Location: Washington, DC
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 221
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
From 2004. A Koryu teacher who received nidan under Ueshiba
"I recognized that energy work you are doing. When O sensei would show up everything would stop and we would do that. They don't teach that anymore you know. It's not in Modern aikido!"
Please fill in the blanks.

The name of the koryu teacher (KT) was _______. KT received nidan in 19___. KT trained at ______ aikido dojo from 19____ to 19____. KT's primary aikido teacher was ________. The koryu KT teaches is _________.

Jim

Not having anything around to read is dangerous: you have to content yourself with life itself, and that can lead you to take risks. - M. Houellebecq, Platform
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-04-2011, 07:59 PM   #70
hoi
Location: Everett, WA
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 7
United_States
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

Quote:
Jim Sorrentino wrote: View Post
Please fill in the blanks.

The name of the koryu teacher (KT) was _______. KT received nidan in 19___. KT trained at ______ aikido dojo from 19____ to 19____. KT's primary aikido teacher was ________. The koryu KT teaches is _________.

Jim
I presume the conversation Mr. Harden had with the Koryu teacher was private; thus, badgering Mr. Harden for this type of information is as classy as your signature.

Peace.

Hoi Pham
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-04-2011, 08:18 PM   #71
kewms
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 991
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

Quote:
Hoi Pham wrote: View Post
I presume the conversation Mr. Harden had with the Koryu teacher was private; thus, badgering Mr. Harden for this type of information is as classy as your signature.
On the other hand, someone who chooses to support his position by publishing a private conversation with an unnamed source shouldn't be surprised when people ask for supporting details.

Katherine
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2011, 05:26 PM   #72
hoi
Location: Everett, WA
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 7
United_States
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

Quote:
Katherine Derbyshire wrote: View Post
On the other hand, someone who chooses to support his position by publishing a private conversation with an unnamed source shouldn't be surprised when people ask for supporting details.

Katherine
Yes, you are right ... that is if Mr. Harden is an unknow character just recently popped out from under some proverbial rock. But his integrity has been vouched by many well-knowned and reputable people ... well, that is if those people are within your circle-of-trust. They are to me -- this might seems like an appeal to authority, and perhaps it is -- I rely on their knowledge and judgement.

I understand Mr. Sorrentino's insistence for background credentials. But by now, most should understand Mr. Harden's M.O.: he is not going to divulge those information. I don't think he is doing that to hide behind some questionable intention. So, one can read his anecdotes with a tablespoonful of salt, view him like a weird uncle telling mesmerizing tales, ignore him completely, or however one prefers.

Whatever the case, I am certain approaching him in a cordial manner will open the doors easier, and I have heard you can grease the hinges with mojito.

Perhaps Mr. Sorrentino's signature line was a bit grating to my sensitivity, and my response was undeserved ... for that I am sorry. Perhaps it touched a bit closed to home. Doh! Did I just say that out loud?

Anyhow That is my observation.

Cordially,

Hoi Pham
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2011, 11:30 AM   #73
jbblack
 
jbblack's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido of Reno
Location: Reno, NV
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 80
United_States
Offline
Re: O'Sensei teaching Aikido at the Hombu Dojo after WWII

Quote:
Katherine Derbyshire wrote: View Post
When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.

If the student isn't ready, the teacher could be standing right in front of them and they'd never know it.

We all see Ueshiba Sensei's students as they are now. It's easy to forget that they were once beginners too. Can we really blame a bunch of athletic men in their twenties for not really "getting" everything the old man was rambling about? Would we really expect them to have the same understanding that their older selves can demonstrate?

Katherine
A quote by Antoine de Saint Exupéry

"The essential things in life are seen not with the eyes, but with the heart."

It is my belief that any interaction with O'Sensei was a teaching. A uchi deshi does not learn just on the mat.

Cheers,
Jeff
  Reply With Quote

Please visit our sponsor:

Aikido DVDs and Video Downloads - by George Ledyard Sensei & other great teachers from AikidoDVDS.Com



Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
If you could buy just ONE book about Aikido techniques, what would it be? Karol Kowalczyk Techniques 45 01-31-2014 11:35 PM
What exactly is an independent dojo? David Yap General 64 11-14-2011 02:05 PM
Open Letter to My Students George S. Ledyard External Aikido Blog Posts 277 08-29-2011 04:31 PM
Aikido in Amsterdam, Terry Lax style... tiyler_durden General 11 11-03-2008 08:31 AM
Transmission, Inheritance, Emulation 2 Peter Goldsbury Columns 3 04-19-2007 04:53 AM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 06:41 PM.



vBulletin Copyright © 2000-2014 Jelsoft Enterprises Limited
----------
Copyright 1997-2014 AikiWeb and its Authors, All Rights Reserved.
----------
For questions and comments about this website:
Send E-mail
plainlaid-picaresque outchasing-protistan explicantia-altarage seaford-stellionate