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Old 10-03-2002, 10:19 AM   #1
Ronny Tromp
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Real Highest Ranking

HI
I wanted to ask for you to analyze this?
It's about the real highest ranking instructor under Steven Seagal (at any time!)
There is an instructor in California claiming to be the highest ranking student, but isn't. He started training with Seagal Sensei in the US. The real highest ranking one is (even though he's not with Seagal Sensei no more) is Haruo Matsuoka Sensei. He started very young and was there from the beginning.
So please, I ask you to pay attention to this.
Also this other instructor in California is also very arrogant, every other teacher is bad expect him and Seagal Sensei.
Everybody is bad except himsel,...
He has to look in a mirror before pointig his finger to others!

bye bye and thanks!!
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Old 10-03-2002, 11:12 AM   #2
diesel
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Matsuoka sensei was the highest ranked in the US till 97 (I beleive) when he moved back to japan, I do not beleive he currently has a tenshin affiliation still. Reynosa sensei had the highest ranking till he recently left the tenshin school.

So to answer the question, I beleive that Santos sensei in florida is currently the highest ranked in tenshin at 5th dan. After that is probaly Angulo sensei and Freeman sensei at 4th dan. There are other tenshin sensei's, but the above are the only I am familiar with as they are directly involved with take sensei on a regular basis. (Yudansan test coming up in november at take sensei's in santa barbara!)

Let me know if I am wrong, because I may well be.

Cheers,

Eric
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Old 10-03-2002, 11:38 AM   #3
Ronny Tromp
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Well,..

Matsuoka Sensei is Currently in the United States and is the Highest ranking "real" Tenshin Aikido teacher.

Reynosa did leave the tenshin.

I don't believe Santos is 5th dan, he's 3rd dan. The other teachers you are right of.

thanks for your reply!

bye bye and thanks!!
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Old 10-03-2002, 11:50 AM   #4
diesel
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Quote:
Ronny Tromp wrote:
Well,..

Matsuoka Sensei is Currently in the United States and is the Highest ranking "real" Tenshin Aikido teacher.

Reynosa did leave the tenshin.

I don't believe Santos is 5th dan, he's 3rd dan. The other teachers you are right of.

thanks for your reply!
My mistake, I thought Santos was 5th. Where is Matsuoka Sensei currently teaching at? Is he back in taos?

Cheers,

Eric
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Old 10-04-2002, 01:01 AM   #5
Ronny Tromp
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No he's not in Taos. Craig Dunn is in Taos, and has been there since Seagal moved back to the US.

Matsuoka Sensei is in Culver City, California.

bye bye and thanks!!
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Old 10-04-2002, 04:34 AM   #6
PRapoza
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Who cares?
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Old 10-04-2002, 07:28 AM   #7
Mel Barker
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Paul, I suspect the people participating in the thread have an interest in it. Why did you deem it necessary to interject? Just Wondering.

Mel
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Old 10-04-2002, 10:53 PM   #8
PeterR
 
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I'm also wondering about the point of the original post. My teacher is the "real" teacher.????

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 10-05-2002, 10:59 AM   #9
Bruce Baker
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You know, this is really a lost exercise?

There is a story about James Mitose, 15th dan.

You ask how can there be a 15th dan if there are only 10 dan ranking?

It seems that there was so much promotion within certain styles that practitioners were giving away dan ranking to be one up on the next guy, instead of letting the years pass with training and understanding a master should have.

Outraged at the hollow promotions, James Mitose told these other teachers that he should 15th dan if they thought they were 7th or 8th dan. In my old encyclopedia of martial arts, it shows James Mitose, 15th dan ... unlike my new book which is a list of tournament winners over the years, and no dan ranking for past masters.

This line of who is a higher dan, or who has been promoted to a higher dan rating is a lost cause. It doesn't help you to understand your training, nor is it relevent to your personal journey ... unless you wish to have the ego of saying you have trained under a teacher of a certain dan rank as a measure of your own accomplishments, which also is ego.

Let it go ... or find out for yourself to satisfy your own curiosity. But asking for answers without confirming them, or knowing how to confirm them is a hollow, worthless journey.

Now go find the lineage and then comeback ... at least we will have something to talk about.
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Old 10-07-2002, 11:09 PM   #10
Misogi-no-Gyo
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Quote:
Ronny Tromp wrote:
Well,..

Matsuoka Sensei is Currently in the United States and is the Highest ranking "real" Tenshin Aikido teacher.
Mr. Tromp,

I do not know you, as you have chosen to leave most of the details of your aikido lineage absent from your post and profile. As for me, I am one of Matsuoka Sensei's senior students. I ask that you respect Matsuoka Sensei's wishes to remain absent from any conversations relating to things that do not concern his present aikido focus. In case you do not know what that may be, I will share with you that which he has shared with me - to seek O-Sensei's spirit through aikido. His mentor on this path is Seiseki Abe Sensei, 10th Dan. The center of our daily training is Kokyu, and in my opinion elements of O-Sensei's misogi practice lie at the heart of that matter.

On a more personal note - regardless of how "en vogue" it may be amongst those not so in-the-know - there was never a "Ten Shin" aikido, as you have mistakenly stated. There was only what we practiced at Aikido Tenshin Dojo - where Aikido came first, and Tenshin was the place those of us dedicated to seeking O-Sensei's spirit met, trained and grew as human beings - with Matsuoka Sensei as our mentor. That dojo is closed. That subject is also closed.

Given the high road Matsuoka Sensei has chosen, please refrain from dragging yourself, my teacher, and the art we practice to such a low level. Focus on training - nothing more.

I no longer participate in or read the discussion forums here on AikiWeb due to the unfair and uneven treatment of people by the owner/administrator.
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Old 10-08-2002, 09:44 AM   #11
diesel
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Quote:
Shaun Ravens (Misogi-no-Gyo) wrote:
Mr. Tromp,

I do not know you, as you have chosen to leave most of the details of your aikido lineage absent from your post and profile. As for me, I am one of Matsuoka Sensei's senior students. I ask that you respect Matsuoka Sensei's wishes to remain absent from any conversations relating to things that do not concern his present aikido focus. In case you do not know what that may be, I will share with you that which he has shared with me - to seek O-Sensei's spirit through aikido. His mentor on this path is Seiseki Abe Sensei, 10th Dan. The center of our daily training is Kokyu, and in my opinion elements of O-Sensei's misogi practice lie at the heart of that matter.

On a more personal note - regardless of how "en vogue" it may be amongst those not so in-the-know - there was never a "Ten Shin" aikido, as you have mistakenly stated. There was only what we practiced at Aikido Tenshin Dojo - where Aikido came first, and Tenshin was the place those of us dedicated to seeking O-Sensei's spirit met, trained and grew as human beings - with Matsuoka Sensei as our mentor. That dojo is closed. That subject is also closed.

Given the high road Matsuoka Sensei has chosen, please refrain from dragging yourself, my teacher, and the art we practice to such a low level. Focus on training - nothing more.
So there is no such style as Tenshin Bugei Gakuen Aikido? (Tenshin for short..) That Take Sensei brought with him to the US and Matsuoka Sensei studied directly under him for years in Taos until family obligations required him to go back to japan?

Or are you just trying to say that he shouldnt worry about the lineage of his sensei and that he should take the word of his sensei as gold? It seems to me Ronny is just trying to get a history of Tenshin Aikido.. even though you say there is no such thing? Just a tenshin dojo? Is there such a thing as yoshinkan aikido? Or just a yoshinkan dojo.. if you mean it that way, I understand what your saying.

Cheers,

Eric
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Old 10-08-2002, 10:24 AM   #12
Hogan
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[QUOTE...Just a tenshin dojo? Is there such a thing as yoshinkan aikido? Or just a yoshinkan dojo.. if you mean it that way, I understand what your saying.

Cheers,

Eric[/quote]

Isn't Yoshinkan a recognized, separate school of Aikido ? As far as I know, "Tenshin Aikido" is not a separate, recognized school of aikido - as far as I know, they practice "aikikai" aikido, being affiliated with Aikikai and receiving their grades through the Aikikai.

But I am just guessing.
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Old 10-08-2002, 01:04 PM   #13
Misogi-no-Gyo
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Quote:
Eric Roku (diesel) wrote:
So there is no such style as Tenshin Bugei Gakuen Aikido? (Tenshin for short..) That Take Sensei brought with him to the US and Matsuoka Sensei studied directly under him for years in Taos until family obligations required him to go back to japan?
What I said is that until Tenshin Dojo closed in 1997 we did not refer to ourselves, nor what we practiced as Tenshin Aikido. We were a member of the Aikikai, and our Dan certificates were all stamped by the Doshu. For what it is worth, Matsuoka Sensei, through Abe Sensei, is still affiliated with the Aikikai.

One last item - We have never stated that "family obligations" required Matsuoka Sensei to close the dojo and return to Japan. That is just hogwash listed on some else's site. The reason the dojo closed is obvious to anyone close enough to know. Those misstatements are made by those who were not there, and have something to gain by inferring that they were close enough to know.
Quote:
Or are you just trying to say that he shouldn't worry about the lineage of his sensei and that he should take the word of his sensei as gold?
I would never say that. One should always know who their teacher's, teacher's teacher is. Lineage is everything. Especially when it involves Abe Sensei and Matsuoka Sensei. As far as his sensei is concerned, since he did not state who that person is, I have no comment.
Quote:
It seems to me Ronny is just trying to get a history of Tenshin Aikido.. even though you say there is no such thing? Just a tenshin dojo? Is there such a thing as yoshinkan aikido? Or just a yoshinkan dojo.. if you mean it that way, I understand what your saying.
Obviously there is a Yoshinkan Aikido - it is an established off-shoot of mainline aikido. They offer there own certifications, as is there right.

Aikido Tenshin dojo is closed. On all levels, what was offered there "technically" is not available anymore. There are new students with direct affiliation with Steven Seagal, and they can call what they do whatever they would like. However, I would like to make it clear - Those people are not now, nor were ever connected with us. What they claim to teach is not what Matsuoka Sensei was or is offering, does not center around what we focused on in the late 80's and throughout the 90's and their students should be clearly told this, but are not.

The most important aspect of any training is the people. Matsuoka Sensei always said, "Aikido Tenshin Dojo is not a building, it is the pepole who meet, train together and dedicate themselves to following center."

If one goes to a place where none of the people there were senior students at our dojo, then one should understand that what you are practicing has little to do with anything that may have been found at Aikido Tenshin Dojo. Doshinokai, Matsuoka Sensei's current movement, is the evolution of years of sincere dedication by the entire senior student body. We are focused, centered, and growing due to Matsuoka Sensei's efforts and sincerity. We welcome anyone that cares to train with us - anytime.

I no longer participate in or read the discussion forums here on AikiWeb due to the unfair and uneven treatment of people by the owner/administrator.
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Old 11-01-2009, 11:25 PM   #14
Falc
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Re: Real Highest Ranking

I can't speak for SR, or anyone except myself. But I can say that I understand what he was getting at, and agree with it.

Seagal Sensei began something with us in North Hollywood, in a warehouse dojo, while dating the woman who would later become his wife. That continued to a building in West Hollywood, and then the films began getting in the way. Any time Seagal Sensei showed up, there would be photographers flashing non-stop, creating a commotion and making it hard to practice. For this reason, (and others) Seagal Sensei wasn't coming to the dojo very often anymore.

During these times, Reynosa Sensei and his students would come down from Santa Barbara to visit and practice with us. It was my pleasure to learn from him and other seniors in the school, including Shawn (Sean?) and Phillip Chen.

Through it all, there was Matsuoka Sensei. It was he who led the classes most of the time. He was the one who expressed concepts to me in his improving english. It was he who indulged me when, a year or so into Aikido, I ask if it would really work on the street. (He told me to punch him. The first one got in. No other attempt to do so even came close.)

Seagal Sensei is a great teacher. He's patient, understanding... and truly was a master, in that he was in control of himself and everything around him (as need be.) He clearly knew that getting even the most basic aspects right was a years-long process... and so he was always gentle in his guidance. I can recall resenting that he wasn't available to us as much after the films started... but then realizing that we hadn't but barely tapped what Matsuoka and Reynosa Sensei had to offer, so ... I shut up and practiced my Aikido.

What was then, that is no more. After the films, people began signing up for very different reasons. Many of them never did "get" that it isn't about muscle or power. Few grasped the difference between most expedient/direct method and brutality... or the concepts of control of others as ONLY a byproduct of control of one's self. Staying Centered became a distant concept as well, because they weren't interested in developing themselves, but in being powerful, in control of others. Then came other events and differences, and Matsuoka and Seagal Sensei went their separate ways. What was then, is no more.

In the years since, I have not found any dojo which is like the energy that was going on during those years in the early/mid 80's. I've come across many places which pale in comparison, teachers who didn't even know what the Japanese expressions meant, let alone their subtext. Without those basics, how can one possibly understand what the practice itself means?

It was a special time. We were all there, each contributing our own aspect to the mix. Sean Sempai, Mark Makita (sp?) (who stopped in from time to time out of Danny Inosanto's group)... So many others, some regular, some coming and going... and all learning and practicing in a rather innocent, naive mindset that had no idea that Aikido was about to become the "in" thing. We just did it because it was the natural progression, moving away from hard styles and their brutality towards a more enlightened way of dealing with the world. Seagal-Sensei and Matsuoka Sensei would not allow us to take falls when the angles and technique weren't correct...but neither were we to fight our partners. Some of this survives in other schools... but that which was then is no more.

What was is no more. Do not try to live in the past. What you have is today and tomorrow, and you'll find life is already far too short to be wasting any part of it on what once was, but cannot ever be again. So leave it where it was, in the past.

O'Sensei taught us to not worry about what others think of Aikido, just practice tenkan every day. I'd say the same is true of ryus and teachers. Assuming you have a good one (Tamiki excepted, IMO) follow your instructors and sempeis. Practice your Aikido. Seek your own sense of Center and Balance, and practice Tenkan every day. This is the instruction of the Founder, who is the real Highest Ranking sensei in Aikido.

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Old 11-02-2009, 12:44 AM   #15
Darryl Cowens
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Re: Real Highest Ranking

You realise this thread is from 2002?
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Old 11-02-2009, 04:31 PM   #16
Tinyboy344
 
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Re: Real Highest Ranking

Quote:
Darryl Cowens wrote: View Post
You realise this thread is from 2002?
What's wrong with diggin' up the past? There's never too much information
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Old 11-05-2009, 06:22 AM   #17
Shadowfax
 
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Re: Real Highest Ranking

old thread, new thread ... whatever.

John that was a nice post. Thank you for sharing that glimpse into the past with us. And the reminder not to get stuck there.
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Old 01-23-2010, 12:36 PM   #18
Eugene Leslie
 
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Re: Real Highest Ranking

Quote:
Paul Rapoza wrote: View Post
Who cares?
I have to agree with this in this case. The question is colored with personal contempt.

On the other hand I have to thank the original poster for the great answers people responded with on this thread.

Quote:
John Taylor Yezeguielian wrote: View Post
O'Sensei taught us to not worry about what others think of Aikido, just practice tenkan every day. I'd say the same is true of ryus and teachers. Assuming you have a good one (Tamiki excepted, IMO) follow your instructors and sempeis. Practice your Aikido. Seek your own sense of Center and Balance, and practice Tenkan every day. This is the instruction of the Founder, who is the real Highest Ranking sensei in Aikido.
Great reply ..thanks...Gene...

Self-discipline is the chief element of self-esteem; and self-esteem the chief element of courage. Thucydides
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Old 02-02-2010, 09:48 AM   #19
edshockley
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Re: Real Highest Ranking

Hopefully this is not diverting the post but I had the pleasure of several days study with Matsuoka Sensei while visiting L.A. and his interpretation of our art is inspiring. This is in no way intended as a slight to the other sensei mentioned but the experience made me eager to view Abe Shihan and Segal Shihan. I think that is one of the valid reasons for examining lineage. We honor the student gby seeking his teacher.
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Old 02-02-2010, 10:14 AM   #20
mickeygelum
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Re: Real Highest Ranking

Quote:
Assuming you have a good one (Tamiki excepted, IMO) follow your instructors and sempeis.
Sir, would please elaborate on this statement, just so I have a clear understanding as to your meaning. Thank you.

Mickey
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