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 > Weapons

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 01-24-2012, 02:43 AM   #76
Carsten Möllering
 
Carsten Möllering's Avatar
Dojo: Hildesheimer Aikido Verein
Location: Hildesheim
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 779
Germany
Offline
Re: bokken suburi questions

Quote:
Robert Cowham wrote: View Post
... Moral of the story perhaps is that life can be easier if you talk to the head guy
Yes, I often witnessed that things are more "relaxed" near the "real center". And if you ask the right person in the right way.
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2012, 07:42 AM   #77
Cliff Judge
Dojo: Aikido Shobukan Dojo
Location: Columbia, MD
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 889
United_States
Offline
Re: bokken suburi questions

Quote:
Carsten M�llering wrote: View Post
Some years ago I had long and interesting conversations with a member (not the one holding the menkyo kaiden) of the German shibu of the KSR. And it became very clear, that the ban of aikidoka in the KSR shibu is founded in the teachings of the ryu. It seems to become evident when you practice long enough to understand what Frieday calls "the kabbala" of the ryu: The inner teachings, the "ura" doctrine.
Whether it is true that there is such a deep gap between the inner teachings of KSR and aikido I am not able to judge.
Okay so nobody in Kashima Shinryu trains Aikido, yet they understand Aikido so well that they know they don't want new students who practice Aikido. But that should come as no surprise since the ban against aikidoka is built into the okuden of the ryu - so they've obviously banned aikidoka from training for hundreds of years before Aikido ever existed!

Sorry, this just gets sillier and sillier to me. It makes more and more sense, though, particularly if Tissier's teachings are as widespread as you say, that at some point the ryu decided that the Aikido organizations posed a real threat to the proper continuation of their art. They don't want to be invited to Aikido seminars, they don't want people coming to train and then showing their friends at the Aikido dojo stuff they don't understand yet, etc. Presumably other arts don't pose as much of a threat in that regard because they are not open-ended like Aikido is.

Sorry for the argumentativeness, Carsten - it's not you I am arguing with, its this omote cultishness that seems to impy that Aikido training damages someone's budo permanently.
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2012, 08:14 AM   #78
Alex Megann
Dojo: Southampton Aikikai
Location: Southampton
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 345
England
Offline
Re: bokken suburi questions

Quote:
Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
Okay so nobody in Kashima Shinryu trains Aikido, yet they understand Aikido so well that they know they don't want new students who practice Aikido. But that should come as no surprise since the ban against aikidoka is built into the okuden of the ryu - so they've obviously banned aikidoka from training for hundreds of years before Aikido ever existed!
Quote:
Carsten Möllering wrote: View Post
There exist, as far as I know, only three European shibu of the KSR. In 2008/9 when I was in contact with the shibu in Frankfurt/Germany they indeed required to drop all other arts entirely: No aikido, no kendo, no other koryu budo, even no boxing or tai chi.
Given Carsten's statement, it doesn't look to me that they are discriminating about aikido in particular! It seems to me quite reasonable that the statutes of the ryu might forbit cross-training in any other discipline.

Alex
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2012, 08:49 AM   #79
Fred Little
Dojo: NJIT Budokai
Location: State Line NJ/NY
Join Date: Apr 2001
Posts: 610
United_States
Offline
Re: bokken suburi questions

Quote:
Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
Okay so nobody in Kashima Shinryu trains Aikido, yet they understand Aikido so well that they know they don't want new students who practice Aikido. But that should come as no surprise since the ban against aikidoka is built into the okuden of the ryu - so they've obviously banned aikidoka from training for hundreds of years before Aikido ever existed!

Sorry, this just gets sillier and sillier to me. It makes more and more sense, though, particularly if Tissier's teachings are as widespread as you say, that at some point the ryu decided that the Aikido organizations posed a real threat to the proper continuation of their art. They don't want to be invited to Aikido seminars, they don't want people coming to train and then showing their friends at the Aikido dojo stuff they don't understand yet, etc. Presumably other arts don't pose as much of a threat in that regard because they are not open-ended like Aikido is.

Sorry for the argumentativeness, Carsten - it's not you I am arguing with, its this omote cultishness that seems to impy that Aikido training damages someone's budo permanently.
Hiya Cliff,

I think it is fair to say that there are several elements of the problem, from the KSR side. From my conversations with one senior practitioner of KSR, (and this is a summary of my understanding, not a verbatim quote) the first part of the problem is the variance between the comparatively homogenous and settled inner kabbala of KSR on the one side, and the comparatively heterogenous and unsettled inner kabbala of aikido on the other. The second part of the problem is the tendency of many aikido practitioners to study a koryu art for the primary purpose of improving their aikido, as distinct from the purpose of learning and inculcating the complete movement system and attitudinal structure of the koryu art. The third part of the problem, even if the first two problems are rendered moot, is that yes, whether you like it or not, it is precisely the view of senior KSR practitioners that Aikido training most certainly can permanently damage one's ability to develop and manifest the teachings of KSR. The resistance of aikido practitioners to this possibility is, from their perspective, evidence of the fundamental problem.

For a pernicious thought experiment, try imagining what might happen if Kenny G were to ask Branford Marsalis for saxophone lessons so he could get a little of that New Orleans feeling into his next release.

YMMV,

FL

  Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2012, 09:01 AM   #80
Cliff Judge
Dojo: Aikido Shobukan Dojo
Location: Columbia, MD
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 889
United_States
Offline
Re: bokken suburi questions

Quote:
Alex Megann wrote: View Post
Given Carsten's statement, it doesn't look to me that they are discriminating about aikido in particular! It seems to me quite reasonable that the statutes of the ryu might forbit cross-training in any other discipline.

Alex
You seem to be eliding over quite a bit of what Carsten has posted.

Quote:
Carsten M�llering wrote: View Post
As far as I was told, the main difference is the "spirit" of fighting. I was told that you can not develop the "true spirit" of KSR when practicing aikido. (Interestingly Tissier often talks about the spirit of the swordwork, derived from KSR by Inaba sensei, being exactly the thing that interested him so much.)
And that you can not reach a true undestanding of the philosophy or esoteric teaching of KSR.
Quote:
Carsten M�llering wrote: View Post
And I don't think that this is the point: Through my discussions with German members of the KSR I learned, that the decision of not allowing aikidoka to enter the ryu has very deep contentual reasons. They truely think that someone who practices aikido has made decisions - in his mind and his body - which don't allow him to use body and mind to do what has to be done or to think was has to be thought when doing KSR.
Quote:
Carsten M�llering wrote: View Post
ISome years ago I had long and interesting conversations with a member (not the one holding the menkyo kaiden) of the German shibu of the KSR. And it became very clear, that the ban of aikidoka in the KSR shibu is founded in the teachings of the ryu. It seems to become evident when you practice long enough to understand what Frieday calls "the kabbala" of the ryu: The inner teachings, the "ura" doctrine.
Whether it is true that there is such a deep gap between the inner teachings of KSR and aikido I am not able to judge.

There exist, as far as I know, only three European shibu of the KSR. In 2008/9 when I was in contact with the shibu in Frankfurt/Germany they indeed required to drop all other arts entirely: No aikido, no kendo, no other koryu budo, even no boxing or tai chi.
Maybe things have changed since then concerning other arts. But aikido is still excluded.
And let me reiterate something I have said, that it is fully reasonable for Kashima Shinryu instructors to choose the students they want to teach, for whatever reasons, and to give the public any story they want to give about why they chose them.

I just think the stuff that Carsten is saying - which is just his own experience talking to members of the group in Germany, I hope everyone realizes - makes them sound kind of crazy.
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2012, 10:01 AM   #81
Carsten Möllering
 
Carsten Möllering's Avatar
Dojo: Hildesheimer Aikido Verein
Location: Hildesheim
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 779
Germany
Offline
Re: bokken suburi questions

Quote:
Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
the stuff that Carsten is saying - which is just his own experience talking to members of the group in Germany, I hope everyone realizes - ...
Indeed: This is just my experience, recounted with my words! And it is just my understanding of those conversations!

Quote:
... - makes them sound kind of crazy
I apologize honestly if I misrepresented any conceptions or views of the KSR!
I didn't mean to give a wrong impression of the teachings or doctrins of the ryu.

I am sorry for having brought up this issue, which I know is a very sensitive one.

Last edited by Carsten Möllering : 01-24-2012 at 10:03 AM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2012, 10:21 AM   #82
califax
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 5
Germany
Offline
Re: bokken suburi questions

Quote:
Alex Megann wrote: View Post
Given Carsten's statement, it doesn't look to me that they are discriminating about aikido in particular! It seems to me quite reasonable that the statutes of the ryu might forbit cross-training in any other discipline.
They ban BBT too. Though you might be accepted as long as you're still undergraduate and promise to leave the Bujinkan.
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2012, 12:19 PM   #83
Cliff Judge
Dojo: Aikido Shobukan Dojo
Location: Columbia, MD
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 889
United_States
Offline
Re: bokken suburi questions

Quote:
Carsten M�llering wrote: View Post
Indeed: This is just my experience, recounted with my words! And it is just my understanding of those conversations!

I apologize honestly if I misrepresented any conceptions or views of the KSR!
I didn't mean to give a wrong impression of the teachings or doctrins of the ryu.

I am sorry for having brought up this issue, which I know is a very sensitive one.
I don't think you've done anything wrong by sharing your experiences here. I think it would be much worse if you had ever trained in Kashima Shinryu and you were actually talking about their teachings or doctrines. You and I should be able to talk about the omote face of a ryu we are not part of all we want, that's why its omote.
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2012, 03:39 PM   #84
Robert Cowham
Dojo: East Sheen Aikido and Kashima No Tachi
Location: London, UK
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 229
Offline
Re: bokken suburi questions

To move the thread slightly perhaps:

Inaba sensei happily teaches Kashima no Tachi (kenjutsu) to Aikido people of a variety of different backgrounds who are interested. For example, as is fairly well known/documented, Tissier sensei studied with Inaba sensei and has fairly widely disseminated his understanding of the various kata and principles that he learned some 30 years ago.

Said (interested) people are often "quite happy with their (aikikai) taijutsu" (and indeed need to keep grading in a particular style/school so they need to (be able to) do techniques in a particular way) but they just want to learn some "kenjutsu" alongside what they currently do.

For those who have practiced with him, Inaba sensei's taijutsu emphasizes particular principles: yawarami (soft body), relaxation, directness, focus on tanden, effectiveness of technique etc. The outward manifestation tends to be different from various other styles (but bear in mind he has Yamaguchi sensei influence - though various Yamaguchi students are different to each other).

So, my questions (personal answer(s) to follow at a suitable point in the discussion):

- why is such training interesting to aikidoka (what does it add that they aren't currently getting from their current training/teaching)?

- can you just "add kenjutsu" to your aikido without changing the way you perform your existing techniques?

- what might (or indeed has to) change in your aikido (techniques or the way you perform them) to incorporate any such understanding (which is at a deeper level than just surface form)?

- what do you "not like" in Inaba sensei's taijutsu forms (if you have had exposure to them) - and why?

I look forward to some views - indeed I hope a genuine exchange could prove rather interesting

At this point I am purposely keeping the questions to a more technical level. Note that I am in no way a speaker for Inaba sensei - I am researching my own way having had some years of study with him - and indeed been encouraged by him to explore other teachings. I am hoping to pick other people's brains to help my own study and understanding
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2012, 03:57 PM   #85
Cliff Judge
Dojo: Aikido Shobukan Dojo
Location: Columbia, MD
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 889
United_States
Offline
Re: bokken suburi questions

I have probably done the most damage to the integrity of this thread of anybody posting here, so let me be the guy to point out that if we want to discuss Inaba Sensei's Kashima Shinryu and the way kenjutsu training can connect with Aikido training in general, we should really do so in a new thread.
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2012, 04:20 PM   #86
Chris Li
 
Chris Li's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido Sangenkai
Location: Honolulu, Hawaii
Join Date: Dec 2000
Posts: 3,004
United_States
Offline
Re: bokken suburi questions

Quote:
Robert Cowham wrote: View Post
To move the thread slightly perhaps:

Inaba sensei happily teaches Kashima no Tachi (kenjutsu) to Aikido people of a variety of different backgrounds who are interested. For example, as is fairly well known/documented, Tissier sensei studied with Inaba sensei and has fairly widely disseminated his understanding of the various kata and principles that he learned some 30 years ago.
As I understand it, Inaba had only a very limited amount of training, and has permission to teach only a very small portion of the curriculum in the context of an Aikido class:

http://blog.aikidojournal.com/2009/0...yu-and-aikido/

Best,

Chris

  Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2012, 04:48 PM   #87
Robert Cowham
Dojo: East Sheen Aikido and Kashima No Tachi
Location: London, UK
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 229
Offline
Re: bokken suburi questions

Quote:
Christopher Li wrote: View Post
As I understand it, Inaba had only a very limited amount of training, and has permission to teach only a very small portion of the curriculum in the context of an Aikido class:

http://blog.aikidojournal.com/2009/0...yu-and-aikido/
As per my comment on that thread - the information presented is from a single point of view and not necessarily the whole truth.

I understand that Inaba sensei had 17 months of training with Kunii sensei (thus 1.5 years which is quoted elsewhere - certainly more than the "less than a year" dismissive comment). The certificate he received was posthumous (of Kunii sensei). As I understand it, some (personal) communications (between Kunii sensei and Inaba sensei and others) shed a slightly different light to the statements in the blog entry - more than that I cannot say without breaking confidences.

Life is not always simple - especially when you include people and their egos
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-25-2012, 05:09 AM   #88
Alex Megann
Dojo: Southampton Aikikai
Location: Southampton
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 345
England
Offline
Question for Robert Cowham

A question, completely off topic, for Robert, but since you are clearly following this thread I thought I would take the opportunity to ask.

There is a "Paul Smith" listed as being promoted to 6 Dan in the list on the Aikikai site. Is this the Paul Smith at Tetsushinkan?

I only ask because I see no mention of any promotion on the Tetsushinkan website. If it is, I will need to pass on my congratulations

Alex
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-25-2012, 05:13 AM   #89
Alex Megann
Dojo: Southampton Aikikai
Location: Southampton
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 345
England
Offline
Re: bokken suburi questions

Quote:
Robert Cowham wrote: View Post
- what do you "not like" in Inaba sensei's taijutsu forms (if you have had exposure to them) - and why?
Actually I find it difficult to have any opinion about Inaba Sensei's taijutsu, partly because I have never managed to get to a class with him, but also because every clip I have found so far on YouTube is of his swordwork. Is there anything on line of him showing aikido?

Alex
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-25-2012, 08:00 AM   #90
Cliff Judge
Dojo: Aikido Shobukan Dojo
Location: Columbia, MD
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 889
United_States
Offline
Re: bokken suburi questions

Quote:
Robert Cowham wrote: View Post
As per my comment on that thread - the information presented is from a single point of view and not necessarily the whole truth.

I understand that Inaba sensei had 17 months of training with Kunii sensei (thus 1.5 years which is quoted elsewhere - certainly more than the "less than a year" dismissive comment). The certificate he received was posthumous (of Kunii sensei). As I understand it, some (personal) communications (between Kunii sensei and Inaba sensei and others) shed a slightly different light to the statements in the blog entry - more than that I cannot say without breaking confidences.

Life is not always simple - especially when you include people and their egos
It's not just that 17 years is "more than 'less than a year'"...it is quite sufficient time for a master swordsman who is reasonably good at teaching to turn the goods over to a bright student. Particularly if that was 17 months of daily training sessions, and the teacher and student had a very good rapport, which are two things i have read allusions of.

The rule rather than the exception in the life of the koryu in modern times is: the headmaster dies, and some number of senior students fail to find adequate motivation to follow the new headmaster. Since every ryu has its own unique criteria and process for licensing, you wind up with some talented individuals without menkyo kaiden going outside of the umbrella of the ryu. And if they happen to attract lots of students and build organizations, the reaction of the folks back at headquarters is going to range from dismissal to petulant derision. Which can then be magnified by foreign students who grew up in cultures where people speak their minds more plainly than they do in Japan.

Last edited by Cliff Judge : 01-25-2012 at 08:03 AM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-25-2012, 10:45 AM   #91
Fred Little
Dojo: NJIT Budokai
Location: State Line NJ/NY
Join Date: Apr 2001
Posts: 610
United_States
Offline
Re: bokken suburi questions

Quote:
Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
It's not just that 17 years is "more than 'less than a year'"...it is quite sufficient time for a master swordsman who is reasonably good at teaching to turn the goods over to a bright student. Particularly if that was 17 months of daily training sessions, and the teacher and student had a very good rapport, which are two things i have read allusions of.

The rule rather than the exception in the life of the koryu in modern times is: the headmaster dies, and some number of senior students fail to find adequate motivation to follow the new headmaster. Since every ryu has its own unique criteria and process for licensing, you wind up with some talented individuals without menkyo kaiden going outside of the umbrella of the ryu. And if they happen to attract lots of students and build organizations, the reaction of the folks back at headquarters is going to range from dismissal to petulant derision. Which can then be magnified by foreign students who grew up in cultures where people speak their minds more plainly than they do in Japan.
Cliff,

The unequivocal testimony of senior practitioners of KSR is that:

a) Inaba was given access to a very limited portion of the curriculum, for a very limited period of time, and that the combination of circumstances was insufficient to give him "the goods" (which goods are swordsmanship as practiced in KSR, as distinct from a marked improvement in his swordsmanship above that of run-of-the-mill aikiken).

b) part of the original terms of license, if you will, were restrictions on the circumstances under which he could teach and the way in which he could represent the material.

c) a number of his students, some of them very senior in the world of aikido have -- for many years, with his apparent blessing and/or collusion, have -- widely advertised what he taught them, and by extension what they are teaching, as KSR. In so doing, they have embarrassed themselves, called their own integrity and good faith into question, and tarred everyone else doing aikido by association.

d) in a counterpoint to your final graph, one might suggest that (increasingly) the rule rather than the exception in aikido is that, faced with the absence of one or another key element in the art of aikido as taught in their line, a number of students of one or another shihan seek out talented individuals who have received more substantive training in that area from a koryu art, but no longer abide by the school's restrictions on when, where, and to whom that material may be taught. They then study with that individual and publicly represent their studies with that individual as legitimate koryu. Sadly, because aikidoka almost all refrain from speaking their minds in a forthright fashion when it comes to the obvious foibles of senior aikidoka, that this scenario raises questions regarding both the technical accuracy of the instruction, the lineal accuracy of the representation, or the integrity of the individuals involved in passing off as genuine koryu arts what are, at best, unauthorized knock-offs and, at worst, cheap counterfeits, is not only studiously ignored by all concerned, but rationalizations for this bad behavior are actively promulgated.

In this light, the decision by the KSR head office to decline to instruct anyone actively involved with aikido seems not at all "cultish." Rather, it makes a great deal of sense, even if one does not credit their explanation of the essential contradictions between the arts, on the grounds that they simply wish to insure that they are only taking on people of good character -- by their definition of "good character," in which definition understanding their ground rules and abiding by them is a key element.

YMMV.

Best,

FL

  Reply With Quote
Old 01-25-2012, 10:48 AM   #92
Robert Cowham
Dojo: East Sheen Aikido and Kashima No Tachi
Location: London, UK
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 229
Offline
Re: Question for Robert Cowham

Quote:
Alex Megann wrote: View Post
A question, completely off topic, for Robert, but since you are clearly following this thread I thought I would take the opportunity to ask.

There is a "Paul Smith" listed as being promoted to 6 Dan in the list on the Aikikai site. Is this the Paul Smith at Tetsushinkan?
That's the one - well deserved in my opinion - but perhaps I'm biased
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-25-2012, 01:01 PM   #93
Robert Cowham
Dojo: East Sheen Aikido and Kashima No Tachi
Location: London, UK
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 229
Offline
Re: bokken suburi questions

Quote:
Fred Little wrote: View Post
The unequivocal testimony of senior practitioners of KSR is that:

a) Inaba was given access to a very limited portion of the curriculum, for a very limited period of time, and that the combination of circumstances was insufficient to give him "the goods" (which goods are swordsmanship as practiced in KSR, as distinct from a marked improvement in his swordsmanship above that of run-of-the-mill aikiken).
Hi Fred

This is a case where different stories are coming from different people - "senior practitioners of KSR" vs Inaba sensei (and others). I have had unequivocal testimony from Inaba sensei! In the absence of independent third parties (and it's over 40 years ago), it's a "he said, she said" scenario - with obvious motivations/bias on both sides - so people have to make up their own minds as to who to believe.

Apparently there may be some relevant articles in "Akamon Aikido" a bulletin published by Tokyo Daigaku Aikidobu and Akamon Aikido Club back in the 70's - no idea if any archives exist.

I am not comfortable saying much more on the topic in a public forum - but did wish to at least present the fact that there is another side to the story - more than just the one sided version previously put out on the web. If you wish to discount it, that's your prerogative.

Regards
Robert
  Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2012, 11:54 PM   #94
Stephen Nichol
Dojo: Aikilife, Canberra
Location: Canberra, ACT
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 89
Australia
Offline
Re: bokken suburi questions

Quote:
David Santana wrote: View Post
how should we do shomen uchi using bokken? should we open our elbows like in this video of Morihiro Saito Sensei http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Y1iXm89jI0 or should we form a triangle with our elbows and body so that the elbows are closer to each other and not to bend our elbows?

I know that different Sensei can have different bokken kata.. but shouldn't the basic stays the same? some people teaches the latter part which makes me wonder why it is different from the one being taught by Saito Sensei and all other references I found for that matter..


Hi David,

This thread has gone all over the place and with the best intentions. I hope you have not given up on it already.

My experience for what it is worth is this:

Even within Iwama Ryu as handed down from Saito Sensei, I have found several Sensei, many who trained for years with Saito Sensei, 4th Dan through 7th Dan who all have a slight variation/nuance or personal 'take' on the basic suburi.

They all have very logical reasons for them and when you practice them they do make sense in how the weapon work makes sense in as far as it pertains to Aikido.

Our own Sensei who has trained with many of these other Sensei and even Saito Sensei, says that it is best to train as your head Sensei or Shihan instructs but to learn and understand what you can from other Sensei and take from them what you can/will.

So in short, while you are just getting started, do not sweat the small stuff.
  Reply With Quote
Old 02-08-2012, 01:56 PM   #95
Stephen Nichol
Dojo: Aikilife, Canberra
Location: Canberra, ACT
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 89
Australia
Offline
Re: bokken suburi questions

For my above post I have no idea how or why the 'yuck' face apears at the top. I posted from my phone and so something must have gone wrong somewhere and now it will not allow me to edit my own post so this is my only option.

No intention with 'yuck' at all on my part that is for certain.
  Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2012, 05:09 AM   #96
sakumeikan
Dojo: Sakumeikan N.E. Aikkai .Newcastle upon Tyne.
Location: Newcastle upon Tyne
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 1,117
United Kingdom
Offline
Re: Question for Robert Cowham

Quote:
Robert Cowham wrote: View Post
That's the one - well deserved in my opinion - but perhaps I'm biased
Dear Robert,
My recollection of Paul Smith Sensei is based on the time he was a member of the A.G.B. He then as far as I am aware studied with Sekiya Sensei. Since then I have lost touch with him. He was always a good person to train with.He was an ex dancer and had as one would expect good overall posture . He might well remember me fro way back. Cheers, Joe.
  Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2012, 06:50 AM   #97
Alex Megann
Dojo: Southampton Aikikai
Location: Southampton
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 345
England
Offline
Re: Question for Robert Cowham

Quote:
Joe Curran wrote: View Post
Dear Robert,
My recollection of Paul Smith Sensei is based on the time he was a member of the A.G.B. He then as far as I am aware studied with Sekiya Sensei. Since then I have lost touch with him. He was always a good person to train with.He was an ex dancer and had as one would expect good overall posture . He might well remember me fro way back. Cheers, Joe.
To add to that, if I remember correctly, Paul started off as quite a young man as almost an uchideshi to Chiba Sensei, but after a few years quit aikido for a while. He then reappeared some time later, to everyone's surprise, at one of Kanetsuka Sensei's classes in Oxford, and thereafter was a very regular member of the BAF for quite a few years, during which time I attended many weekend courses that Paul hosted with KS at his dojo at the London Contemporary Dance School in Euston. Paul somehow managed to get the LCDS to sponsor a trip to Japan to study for several months with Yamaguchi Sensei and Inaba Sensei. He was already a favoured partner of Kanetsuka Sensei's in the Kashima Shinryu kihondachi partner work (which he originally learned from Sekiya Sensei), and after Paul returned from Japan I got the impression that Kanetsuka Sensei was keen to absorb what he had learned from Inaba Sensei.

To echo Joe's comments, Paul has a natural grace and elegance in his aikido, and I remember someone saying about him that "that guy definitely doesn't sit behind a desk all day"...

Alex
  Reply With Quote
Old 03-22-2012, 05:34 PM   #98
wbodiford
Location: Los Angeles
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 1
Offline
Re: bokken suburi questions

I cannot address the original topic, "bokken suburi questions," but I want to respond to two issues that arose in the subsequent responses in regard to Kashima-Shinryu. First, Kashima-Shinryu does not discriminate against applicants who practice Aikido (or anything else). Rather, the rules simply state: "In the interest of maintaining Kashima-Shinryu's integrity as a traditional form of Japanese culture, on-going membership in other martial art organizations is prohibited" (http://www.kashima-shinryu.jp/English/contact.html).

Second, the "he said vs. she said" analogy is entirely misleading, in so far as it suggests a private dispute about which outsiders can have no knowledge. To see why it is so misleading, you need merely to look at *who* says *what* in public. For the purposes of this discussion we can even ignore Prof. Seki and focus exclusively on what other people say.

[1] The Soke (head of the Kunii family) of Kashima-Shinryu says that Prof. Seki is the Shihanke (headmaster). The 20th generation Soke, Kunii Michitomo, was interviewed across two issues of "Gokui" magazine (summer and autumn 1997). He pointedly did not mention Mr. Inaba once. Instead, the interview began with a text box that identifies Kunii Michitomo as the oldest son of Kunii Zen'ya and Prof. Seki as Zen'ya's successor who represents the Soke in teaching and directing Kashima-Shinryu ("Gokui", summer 1997, p 38). This relationship continues today under the current Soke, Kunii Masakatsu.

[2] Kunii Zen'ya says so, as testified by his own handwriting --- clearly reproduced in plate 14 of "Legacies of the Sword" --- where he addresses Prof. Seki as "Kashima-Shinryu Shihanke." (Many documents & scrolls written by Kunii Zen'ya exist and the distinguishing features of his handwriting are easily recognizable.)

[3] The Kashima Jingu Shrine says so, as indicated (again) by plate 6 of "Legacies of the Sword," which shows Prof. Seki demonstrating Kashima-Shinryu at the shrine. In the Spring of each year The Kashima Jingu sponsors a martial art demonstration in honor of Tsukuhara Bokuden. Once every 12 years the shrine also sponsors a martial art demonstration as part of a special boat festival (conducted along with the Katori Jingu Shrine). The shrine always invites Prof. Seki and his students (no one else) to demonstrate Kashima-Shinryu at these events.

Testimony by the current Soke, the previous Soke, the handwriting of Kunii Zen'ya, and the Kashima Jingu should provide more than sufficient evidence. But if anyone needs to hear from an independent third party, then [4] the Japanese government also says so. The government has granted Prof. Seki exclusive legal rights to the name "Kashima-Shinryu" in relation to martial art activities of any form. The Japanese government does not grant this kind of legal privilege lightly, but only after conducting a thorough investigation during which all evidence --- including objections or counter claims (if any exist) --- receives full consideration.

Now what does Mr. Inaba say? Robert Cowham suggests that the "Akamon Aikido" club bulletin should record relevant information. Libraries do not seem to preserve copies of that bulletin. In searching for it, though, I came across a copy of "Tokyo Daigaku Aikidobu Gojunen Shi" (2004), a thick (342 pages) compilation of historical information about the first 50 years of the Aikido Club at Tokyo University. It does reprint 4 issues of the club bulletin, but each of them consist of essays written by Mr. Tanaka Shigeho, the founder and chief instructor (shihan) of the club. Out of the book's 99 subsections, 8 are by (or concern) Mr. Tanaka and 3 are by Mr. Inaba. Even these 3 are interesting though.

The first one consists of a brief (2 page) salutation to congratulate the club on its 50th anniversary. In it Mr. Inaba recounts how when he first arrived at Tokyo Univ., he decided to demonstrate Kashima-Shinryu battojutsu kata during the university's May festival even though he had no prior experience at performing these kata ("keiken wa nakkata"). He describes his demonstration as a heroic accomplishment, achieved through sheer determination and insight. The other two consist of reprints from other publications. There is a short essay in which Mr. Inaba discusses the meaning of the term "ai-ki" as used in the teachings of various swordsmen, such as Chiba Shusaku, Yamada Jirokichi, Yamaoka Tesshu (etc.). In this essay he never mentions Kunii Zen'ya. The other is an interview from "Aiki News" magazine (Winter 2000) on the concepts of "jutsu" and "do" in Aikido. In this interview Mr. Inaba does mention Kunii Zen'ya, but since the interview focuses on Aikido the remarks about Kunii lack any narrative thread.

Inaba presents a more straightforward account of his relationship with Kunii Zen'ya in an interview that appears in the Spring 1997 issue of "Gokui" magazine, which ran a cover story about Kunii Zen'ya. Below I translate in full the section where Mr. Inaba addresses the question about his training under Kunii Zen'ya.

<quote>
---- Question: [Can you tell us about your] "Meeting Kunii sensei?"

Inaba: "When I first met Kunii sensei I was accompanying my Aikido instructor Tanaka Shigeho and my senpai [senior student in Aikido] Shimada [Kazushige]. I was just a second-year student at Meiji University. I did not know anything about Kunii sensei (smiles). Therefore, thinking 'is it alright for me to go along?,' I accompanied them, and that was the first time (smiles). As soon as I met him I was enchanted. I felt that 'here is a person who earnestly and truly has devoted his life to budo,' and right then and there I requested permission to join his dojo.

"But, after I became his student, at first I received absolutely no instruction from him. Because I was the most junior student, the training sessions would end while Kunii sensei was still working out with the senior students. Therefore, each of my training sessions was spent practicing jujutsu. At that time I thought to myself, 'I did not come here to learn jujutsu!' Kunii sensei, though, taught that one must learn jujutsu before learning swordsmanship.

"But I could not bear the waiting, unable to learn the sword as I wanted. For another whole week he [Kunii sensei] did not give me any lessons at all. Then I begin to think: 'If Kunii sensei will not give me a lesson, I am going to quit . . . .' [ellipsis in the original]

"Just around that time, by chance there was a rainy day. When I showed up at the dojo, I was the only one there. Kunii sensei came out and said: 'O.k. I will practice with you.' That was the first time he taught me sword.

"Until then I had never used a sword [i.e., bokuto] in his dojo. But I had been watching the senpai [senior students] and I had memorized all their movements. Kunii sensei said: 'Cut like this.' And without thinking I just did it. He said: 'Oh, the angle of your stroke is very good.' Because I had been anticipating this moment all week, it made the number-one strongest impression [on me]. I was so happy (smiles).

"At that time Kunii sensei was 70 years old. He died at 72. Therefore, I just barely had time to meet him. Karmic connections are really important!"
</quote>

I think the public record speaks volumes. It is readily accessible to anyone who wishes to examine it. To return to the first issue: the words "maintaining Kashima-Shinryu's integrity as a traditional form of Japanese culture" might seem abstract or vague to some people, but these words have definite and concrete implications. At the very least they mean that one should not attempt to dismantle Kashima-Shinryu by rejecting part of its curriculum (such as its jujutsu) and focusing only on other parts (such as swordsmanship). They almost certainly mean that in traditional Japanese culture one should respect the authority of the school's Soke and respect the determinations of the shrine with which the school identifies itself. They even mean that if one has not been taught how to perform the school's kata, then one should not attempt to demonstrate them in public (or teach them to others). Much more could be said, but I will stop here.

. . . . William Bodiford
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-19-2012, 04:13 PM   #99
Robert Cowham
Dojo: East Sheen Aikido and Kashima No Tachi
Location: London, UK
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 229
Offline
Re: bokken suburi questions

I dip in and out of Aikiweb and due to the way forums are marked as read, I don't always notice that responses have been made to threads in which I have participated - so rather belatedly:

Inaba sensei has documented his version of the story, but so far in a version not issued to more than a few hundred students. As and when it becomes public it may answer some of the points above, including as it does quotes from correspondence from Kunii sensei.

Interestingly I believe that Kunii sensei's daughter was present at the ceremony to mark the 35th anniversary of the Shiseikan...
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-03-2013, 11:24 PM   #100
sourceone
Location: Denver, CO
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 4
United_States
Offline
Re: bokken suburi questions

What ive been told from someone who has trained with Saito Sensei is that it is proper to put your elbows out. this translates to arm movement in some taijutsu.
  Reply With Quote

Please visit our sponsor:

Seminar with Frank Doran, Shihan - Aug. 8-10, 2014 at Sunset Cliff's Aikido, near San Diego's finest beaches



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
Bokken and Jo questions seank Weapons 19 01-13-2010 09:06 AM
Bokken Suburi Question grasshopper73 Weapons 2 12-07-2007 07:53 PM
bokken comparison (long post) linvincible Weapons 11 08-23-2005 02:30 PM
Bokken Suburi Noah Weapons 9 12-31-2004 03:59 PM
Bokken suburi "problems" Ta Kung Weapons 18 09-14-2004 05:25 AM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:28 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