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Old 04-13-2012, 07:25 PM   #251
jackie adams
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Re: The Founder's Teaching Ability

Quote:
Matthew Gano wrote: View Post
Hi Jackie,
I'm feeling better and better, thank you! And it was my pleasure; thank you for the chance to think about it more deeply!
Hope your day is going nicely!
Take care,
Matt
Hello Matt, glad you're feeling better.

I re-read what you said, a pleasurable read for sure. I'd like to entertain the thought the real fault of transmission from the Founder to his uchideshi was budo? The budo he learned from Takeda, and how he practiced and embraced that budo? The Founder's budo isn't lost. He left a legacy, looking at his life we can see his practice of budo. Much different was the Founder's budo and practice then that of his son's or uchideshi. Far be it from me to criticize any of them, I am only proposing another possible angle. Any thoughts?

Matt take care, and have a great weekend. It has been a pleasure.
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Old 04-20-2012, 11:59 PM   #252
bothhandsclapping
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Re: The Founder's Teaching Ability

Presuming Ueshiba had an enlightenment experience ... do you think it was the same realization as other spiritual notables throughout history?

Say for sake of argument it was not exactly the same realization, but was yet extraordinary ... what do you suppose would constitute a truly extraordinary experience? Not specifically, but more to the question, could this experience ever be really articulated? Could it ever be 'really transmitted'?

If it could be readily articulated, if it could be readily transmitted, why hadn't it already been transmitted, why hadn't it already been articulated long before Ueshiba? If a 'single candle can light a thousand other candles', how is it the whole world was not already enlightened by the time Ueshiba was born? (There were a lot of potential candles between Buddha and Jesus and the late 1800's.) How is it we should have expected some diminutive, eccentric Japanese martial artist to do what no one else in history had yet figured out how to do?

Or is it more likely that an enlightened individual can, at best, ever hope to ever 'light the candle' of one or two others?

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Old 04-21-2012, 02:00 AM   #253
Chris Li
 
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Re: The Founder's Teaching Ability

Quote:
Jim Redel wrote: View Post
Presuming Ueshiba had an enlightenment experience ... do you think it was the same realization as other spiritual notables throughout history?

Say for sake of argument it was not exactly the same realization, but was yet extraordinary ... what do you suppose would constitute a truly extraordinary experience? Not specifically, but more to the question, could this experience ever be really articulated? Could it ever be 'really transmitted'?

If it could be readily articulated, if it could be readily transmitted, why hadn't it already been transmitted, why hadn't it already been articulated long before Ueshiba? If a 'single candle can light a thousand other candles', how is it the whole world was not already enlightened by the time Ueshiba was born? (There were a lot of potential candles between Buddha and Jesus and the late 1800's.) How is it we should have expected some diminutive, eccentric Japanese martial artist to do what no one else in history had yet figured out how to do?

Or is it more likely that an enlightened individual can, at best, ever hope to ever 'light the candle' of one or two others?
I think that's a rather large presumption. But even assuming that were the case - "spiritual notables" today are at the end of some very organized structures to transmit that very thing, which is why you are talking about it today.

Your argument about enlightening the entire world just doesn't hold up - everybody knows exactly how to keep physically fit, but how many people do it?

Going back to Ueshiba - we can see know, in his own very clear statements, the links to very old, and very organized, methods of technical transmission and conditioning.

Best,

Chris

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Old 04-21-2012, 10:31 AM   #254
bothhandsclapping
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Re: The Founder's Teaching Ability

and so, a thought experiment ...

A troubled martial artist is training hard ... as he's found it's the one thing that seems to give him some relief. Somewhere between his relentless training and his spiritual studies he stumbles upon something we will call a 'universal truth'. It immediately gives him great comfort. And also being a naturally compassionate man he now wants to share this knowledge.

So, he contemplates and first realizes that the message (this universal truth) is nearly impossible to articulate and second, what he knows best are the martial arts and Shintoism. He makes the logical choice to frame his message primarily in the vocabulary of the martial arts and secondarily in the vocabulary of Shintoism. And so world has a remarkably unique new martial art replete with some esoteric Shinto sub tones.

And to Ueshiba's dismay, no-one is getting it. As all the sages before him, Ueshiba learns first-hand about a human's nearly infinite capacity to fixate on the medium (in this case aikido itself) at the expense of the message. The ultimate paradox is, of course, that the aikido student must realize that what stands between him/her and this universal truth is the very thing they've dedicated themselves to mastering.

Is there really any wonder why so few of Ueshiba's students ever got it?

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Old 04-21-2012, 10:55 AM   #255
Chris Li
 
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Re: The Founder's Teaching Ability

Quote:
Jim Redel wrote: View Post
and so, a thought experiment ...

A troubled martial artist is training hard ... as he's found it's the one thing that seems to give him some relief. Somewhere between his relentless training and his spiritual studies he stumbles upon something we will call a 'universal truth'. It immediately gives him great comfort. And also being a naturally compassionate man he now wants to share this knowledge.

So, he contemplates and first realizes that the message (this universal truth) is nearly impossible to articulate and second, what he knows best are the martial arts and Shintoism. He makes the logical choice to frame his message primarily in the vocabulary of the martial arts and secondarily in the vocabulary of Shintoism. And so world has a remarkably unique new martial art replete with some esoteric Shinto sub tones.

And to Ueshiba's dismay, no-one is getting it. As all the sages before him, Ueshiba learns first-hand about a human's nearly infinite capacity to fixate on the medium (in this case aikido itself) at the expense of the message. The ultimate paradox is, of course, that the aikido student must realize that what stands between him/her and this universal truth is the very thing they've dedicated themselves to mastering.

Is there really any wonder why so few of Ueshiba's students ever got it?
I think that:
  1. He didn't stumble on anything, he was taught, and that has been shown.
  2. That he was taught, and that he was employing old and verifiable training methods is clear enough to see from his own statements, his training history, and his demonstrated technique.
  3. No need to make up anything about a "remarkably unique new martial art" (something which has never been shown to be true, in spite of the traditional party line) - weren't you the one who wanted to keep it simple?

Best,

Chris

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Old 04-21-2012, 11:44 AM   #256
bothhandsclapping
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Re: The Founder's Teaching Ability

hmmmm ... can't help up be reminded about the Chinese story of the frog in the well.

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Old 04-21-2012, 11:52 AM   #257
Chris Li
 
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Re: The Founder's Teaching Ability

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hmmmm ... can't help up be reminded about the Chinese story of the frog in the well.
hmmm...I was going to say the same thing

If you think that he stumbled on something - then show where that is differentiated in his writings and his actions instead of just stating that it "might" be so.

If he has a "remarkably unique new martial art" - then show us how and why that is so, instead of just saying that other people simply can't see out of the well. It's a cute story, but it really doesn't move the conversation anywhere.

But before you do that - you might go back and check out the last ten years of threads where we've discussed this kind of thing before.

Best,

Chris

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Old 04-21-2012, 06:17 PM   #258
bothhandsclapping
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Re: The Founder's Teaching Ability

You may not like my term 'stumble' ... pick one - but what do you make of the story of his encounter with the swordsman after which he was 'bathed in a golden light" and was able to "understand the songs of the birds", and "I am the universe", and all that. I don't get the impression he was searching for a way to communicate with birds, and I never got the impression someone taught him how to do it, certainly not Takeda. You may not accept the story, fine, but if you do ... stumble seems to be as good a word as any.

So, strike the word 'remarkable', I will grant you it is easily overused. And you may want to argue whether or not it is truly a "new martial art", but Google Uesshiba aikido "new martial art" and you will get close to 50,000 hits. Add the word remarkable and you still get 7000 hits. But Google Ueshiba aikido "not a new martial art" and you get 5 hits.

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Old 04-21-2012, 07:16 PM   #259
Chris Li
 
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Re: The Founder's Teaching Ability

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Jim Redel wrote: View Post
You may not like my term 'stumble' ... pick one - but what do you make of the story of his encounter with the swordsman after which he was 'bathed in a golden light" and was able to "understand the songs of the birds", and "I am the universe", and all that. I don't get the impression he was searching for a way to communicate with birds, and I never got the impression someone taught him how to do it, certainly not Takeda. You may not accept the story, fine, but if you do ... stumble seems to be as good a word as any.
A lot was made of the story - especially by Kisshomaru and the Aikikai after the war when they were building the myth of the Founder without Daito-ryu, but it's not that unusual in terms of the stories of how martial arts get started in Japan.

And at that point, remember, he'd already been training pretty intensely with Sokaku Takeda for 9 years.

Quote:
Jim Redel wrote: View Post
So, strike the word 'remarkable', I will grant you it is easily overused. And you may want to argue whether or not it is truly a "new martial art", but Google Uesshiba aikido "new martial art" and you will get close to 50,000 hits. Add the word remarkable and you still get 7000 hits. But Google Ueshiba aikido "not a new martial art" and you get 5 hits.
Well, if it's on Google than it must be true.

Best,

Chris

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Old 04-21-2012, 10:40 PM   #260
Tom H.
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Re: The Founder's Teaching Ability

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Christopher Li wrote: View Post
if it's on Google than it must be true.
Let's Google that just to be sure.. Only 84 results? Seems suspect.

Tom
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Old 04-22-2012, 07:49 AM   #261
MM
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Re: The Founder's Teaching Ability

Quote:
Christopher Li wrote: View Post
A lot was made of the story - especially by Kisshomaru and the Aikikai after the war when they were building the myth of the Founder without Daito-ryu, but it's not that unusual in terms of the stories of how martial arts get started in Japan.

And at that point, remember, he'd already been training pretty intensely with Sokaku Takeda for 9 years.

Well, if it's on Google than it must be true.

Best,

Chris
Hi Chris,

Definitely agree. Plus, (for the readers) Takeda supposedly also had mystical, magical experiences. Takeda supposedly could also do "mystical", "magical" things. I think, too, that there have been some Chinese martial arts masters who have been "bathed in a golden light" due to internal training. Hmmm ...
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