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Old 10-12-2012, 01:35 PM   #51
DH
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

At what point does "tradition" have real value as opposed to what we have been told? When does accuracy and walking in tune with what the founder actually said and actually practiced take the forefront of our research.
Dan
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Old 10-12-2012, 03:02 PM   #52
Cliff Judge
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
It's worth noting that not all "Hanmi" is the same anyway. So pointing out -a- particular hanmi is more exact. That said, beyond its use to make your "martial art" more uniform,(and lets face it, we all have to do that to one degree or another in our arts) I can make a case for it being practically useless to even being detrimental to stability in actual combative movement.
So if you use hanmi at your dojo, it's a "martial art." In quotes.

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
At what point does "tradition" have real value as opposed to what we have been told? When does accuracy and walking in tune with what the founder actually said and actually practiced take the forefront of our research.
Dan
Tradition, to make a definition for the sake of being clear here, is what your teachers teach you. It is as valid as it is a representation of what they were taught by their teachers, and their teachers were taught by THEIR teachers, etc. If you are smart you pick your teacher as best you can and constantly reevaluate your level of faith in whether or not what he is teaching you is a transmission from Osensei (or whomever).

As far as what the founder actually said, there has been lots of research done there by folks like Stan Pranin, Peter Goldsbury, Chris Li, etc. For me context is still a huge issue when looking at these things. This thread has a lot of examples - people are posting quotations and everybody is like "that sounds like he has no idea what he is talking about!"

And as far as "walking in tune with what the founder actually practiced...." are we all confident we have now figured out exactly what that is? Because I think it is one thing to note that modern Aikido may be different than what Osensei actually practiced because there aren't a lot of people who are near that skill level. It is quite another to say "THIS is exactly what he was doing" because you don't know that. How can you? The best you can do is train with someone who trained with him.
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Old 10-12-2012, 04:24 PM   #53
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
So if you use hanmi at your dojo, it's a "martial art." In quotes.

Tradition, to make a definition for the sake of being clear here, is what your teachers teach you. It is as valid as it is a representation of what they were taught by their teachers, and their teachers were taught by THEIR teachers, etc. If you are smart you pick your teacher as best you can and constantly reevaluate your level of faith in whether or not what he is teaching you is a transmission from Osensei (or whomever).

As far as what the founder actually said, there has been lots of research done there by folks like Stan Pranin, Peter Goldsbury, Chris Li, etc. For me context is still a huge issue when looking at these things. This thread has a lot of examples - people are posting quotations and everybody is like "that sounds like he has no idea what he is talking about!"

And as far as "walking in tune with what the founder actually practiced...." are we all confident we have now figured out exactly what that is? Because I think it is one thing to note that modern Aikido may be different than what Osensei actually practiced because there aren't a lot of people who are near that skill level. It is quite another to say "THIS is exactly what he was doing" because you don't know that. How can you? The best you can do is train with someone who trained with him.
Thanks Cliff, absolutely to the point.
Cheers
Lars
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Old 10-12-2012, 04:34 PM   #54
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

Quote:
Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
The best you can do is train with someone who trained with him.
The best you can do, IMO, is someone who can replicate what he showed, can explain it, and can teach you how to do it.

That might be someone who trained with him...or it might not.

Best,

Chris

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Old 10-12-2012, 05:45 PM   #55
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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Christopher Li wrote: View Post
The best you can do, IMO, is someone who can replicate what he showed, can explain it, and can teach you how to do it.

That might be someone who trained with him...or it might not.

Best,

Chris
Let's start with "what he showed." How can you know even know what that is without having trained with him?
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Old 10-12-2012, 06:01 PM   #56
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
Let's start with "what he showed." How can you know even know what that is without having trained with him?
How could you know anything about anybody you've never met?

For that matter, how do you know that the people who trained with him know what that is? Any number of them have said that various others of them didn't know - many of them said themselves that they didn't know.

Like anything else, you look at the information you have and form your opinion.

All of which is irrelevant to my point - which is just because somebody spent some time with someone doesn't mean that they are the best person to teach you what that person was doing.

Best,

Chris

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Old 10-12-2012, 06:03 PM   #57
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

Quote:
Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
Quote:
Dan Harden wrote:
It's worth noting that not all "Hanmi" is the same anyway. So pointing out -a- particular hanmi is more exact. That said, beyond its use to make your "martial art" more uniform,(and lets face it, we all have to do that to one degree or another in our arts) I can make a case for it being practically useless to even being detrimental to stability in actual combative movement.
So if you use hanmi at your dojo, it's a "martial art." In quotes.

Tradition, to make a definition for the sake of being clear here, is what your teachers teach you.
Easy, boy. Given that Dan goes on to acknowledge that we all have to bring some uniformity to our arts, I don't think those quotes are intended to be derogatory.

More interesting is the point Dan raises, which is what exactly do we mean by hanmi? There's a very powerful, basic stance that shows up in Kashima Shin Ryu which could be called hanmi, though it's not the heel-in-line-with-front-foot hanmi that aikidoka love. There's also a very exaggerated feet-in-line-but-turned-out version that never made sense to me until some students of Shirata Sensei showed me what's really going on with it.

As for tradition, what your teacher teaches is what they teach. Tradition is the whole background behind them, which they can pass on or not depending on ability and inclination. The two aren't the same.

Evolution doesn't prove God doesn't exist, any more than hammers prove carpenters don't exist.
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Old 10-12-2012, 06:21 PM   #58
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

A link to a picasa album I quickly put together, mainly the Founder in hanmi

https://picasaweb.google.com/sorokod...eat=directlink

Will be interesting to see more such photos, in particular there is a nice one of the founder with a theatre troupe which I have not been able to locate.

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Old 10-12-2012, 06:29 PM   #59
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

What we have been told is part of tradition. Tradition is the handing down of things, passing on, usually verbally. Be it customs, stories, beliefs etc.

As all styles of Aikido have things handed down in such a way then they are by definition all traditional.

The question is thereafter only which traditions does each follow and which do they decide not to.

Value of such is personal to those who follow the ones they do. Thus immeasurable.

Research can merely note this. No other significance as I see it.

Peace.G.
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Old 10-12-2012, 06:44 PM   #60
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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David Soroko wrote: View Post
A link to a picasa album I quickly put together, mainly the Founder in hanmi

https://picasaweb.google.com/sorokod...eat=directlink

Will be interesting to see more such photos, in particular there is a nice one of the founder with a theatre troupe which I have not been able to locate.
Nice pictures - but what's the point in relation to:

Quote:
The founder of AIKIDO, Morihei Ueshiba O-sensei, spent many years adapting techniques from Daito-Ryu Jujitsu and other martial arts to embody the principle of AWASE.
Which was how this thing got started...

Best,

Chris

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Old 10-12-2012, 06:53 PM   #61
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

This is in relation to your "how can you know" comment and Dan's "Remember; Ueshiba never said stand in hanmi in the supposed quote Stevens offered."

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Old 10-12-2012, 08:40 PM   #62
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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David Soroko wrote: View Post
This is in relation to your "how can you know" comment and Dan's "Remember; Ueshiba never said stand in hanmi in the supposed quote Stevens offered."
Dan's referring to the 60 degree thing, I think. I've posted a blog (http://www.aikidosangenkai.org/blog/...budo-and-kamae) about that one. I'm not sure how it addresses "how do you know" except on a very gross scale. Neither of those really go to the original question, IMO.

Best,

Chris

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Old 10-14-2012, 04:57 PM   #63
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

Hello Chris
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Christopher Li wrote: View Post
Well, it's unique, but not necessarily objective. The Founder was just as prone to bending facts as anybody else, and it's important to keep that in mind when considering certain statements - and considering what certain instructors base their own statements upon.
Quote:
Christopher Li wrote: View Post
It's quite likely that Saito's quoting the Founder here, IMO.

That doesn't mean that what he's saying is correct - and it opens up some other conversations about whether or not the Founder was always representing things truthfully.

Best,

Chris
As I have come to understand it, purposely misrepresenting the truth (as Osensei saw it - as one of Japan's premiere martial artists), would jar severely with his spiritual training -- which he connected to his physical training. He was human, but one with a pattern for having no disparity between thought and deed.

Takuma Hisa said that aikido and Daito-ryu were essentially the same. His opinion was based upon training with Ueshiba first (1931) then later with Takeda (1936). Saito Sensei was around at a time when he would have met and trained with plenty of old sempai (including Mochizuki) who had strong backgrounds in the Budo that Osensei taught before he started calling it aikido. In the interview I quoted, Saito Sensei began with "It was said..." and whichever sempai he is referencing, his experience in the dojo clearly tallied with significant changes to the art.

Quote:
Christopher Li wrote: View Post
Really, hanmi is not a mysterious innovation of Morihei Ueshiba, you see it in most Japanese arts. Further, hanmi is, to my mind, peripheral to the main question here - whether or not awase is really the same as aiki.
Koshinage and punching are not mysterious innovations either. As your video link shows, the hanmi Osensei developed in Iwama is different in form and application. Hanmi is not peripheral either since it is the cornerstone of awase. As Alexander Sensei said, aikido as Osensei defined it (born in Iwama) was derived from Daito-Ryu and other arts, a couple of which have been mentioned.

As I have come to see it, awase/musubi is a part of Takemusu Aiki.

I like the work you are doing correlating Osensei's words with kokyu/Aiki training found in Daito-Ryu and Chinese arts. There has been very little reference to what Osensei did in creating aikido from Daito-Ryu and other arts in Iwama. Whole books have been written without anyone actually coming here and looking at the Aiki Jinja and asking how its design relates to the way Osensei taught, or looking at his library, talking to the people who trained with him in that period etc. Your welcome to David Alexander was surprisingly frosty considering the wealth of information he has that could help you.

Regards

Carl
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Old 10-14-2012, 04:59 PM   #64
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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Dan Harden wrote: View Post
It's worth noting that not all "Hanmi" is the same anyway. So pointing out -a- particular hanmi is more exact. That said, beyond its use to make your "martial art" more uniform,(and lets face it, we all have to do that to one degree or another in our arts) I can make a case for it being practically useless to even being detrimental to stability in actual combative movement.
Hello Dan

What kind of hanmi did Osensei teach in Iwama? Where did he get them from and what do they do?

Carl
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Old 10-14-2012, 05:22 PM   #65
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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Carl Thompson wrote: View Post
As I have come to understand it, purposely misrepresenting the truth (as Osensei saw it - as one of Japan's premiere martial artists), would jar severely with his spiritual training -- which he connected to his physical training. He was human, but one with a pattern for having no disparity between thought and deed.
Well, I have him on tape purposely misrepresenting the truth. And that's just the clearest instance. Plenty of people with spiritual training misrepresent things.

As for the rest, well, I've been to Iwama many times - I've also spoken to most of the principle post war figures at one time or another.

My reply to David - well, I didn't think it was frosty at all.

Quote:
How many Sensei would do something like that for a student, especially a gaijin?
I think that's the wrong way to look at instructors, that's all.

Best,

Chris

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Old 10-15-2012, 07:37 AM   #66
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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Christopher Li wrote: View Post
As for the rest, well, I've been to Iwama many times - I've also spoken to most of the principle post war figures at one time or another.
And yet this statement is a matter of debate for you:
Quote:
The founder of AIKIDO, Morihei Ueshiba O-sensei, spent many years adapting techniques from Daito-Ryu Jujitsu and other martial arts to embody the principle of AWASE.
And you consider this a question:
Quote:
Christopher Li wrote: View Post
Further, hanmi is, to my mind, peripheral to the main question here - whether or not awase is really the same as aiki.
I know you have visited Iwama. I think it was clear that I was referring to the current research you and others are doing related to IP/Aiki. Are you saying you came to Iwama as an IP/Aiki proponent in relation to this?

Regards

Carl
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Old 10-15-2012, 08:36 AM   #67
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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Carl Thompson wrote: View Post
I also wonder how you define awase. Like koshinage, it is just a word in Japanese that is not tied to a specific way of doing things. I can use awase with the staff in my office when we share the photocopier. People using the term arrange it with other words to show what they mean by it and in the context of Alexander Sensei's articles, I don't think he meant the overly compliant practice that plagues much of modern aikido. Another way of looking at awase is as musubi (connection).

Regards

Carl
To quote David Alexander:

Quote:
David Alexander wrote:
The concept of AWASE is to merge into an opponent's attacking movement and take control. During the initial engagement the defender maintains perfect balance and perfect stance, whereas the technique is designed such that the balance and stance of the attacker are destroyed. The attacker is thereby brought under control immediately. The technique is completed by continuing the movement into a joint lock, pin, throw, etc.

A general conception of AIKIDO is that the principle is to use an attacker's own power against him. Although this is true to some extent, AWASE is more dynamic. The defender uses his own body movement to merge into the attacker's power. It is also possible to initiate a movement that will create an attack into the defender's sphere of control. After the initial engagement, the attacker's power is irrelevant because his balance is gone and he cannot bring his power to bear.

As an analogy to AWASE, consider trying to stop a train that is coming down the tracks. Standing on the tracks and trying to stop the train by physically overpowering it will not be expected to work. However, running next to the train, jumping aboard, moving to the engineer's compartment, overcoming the engineer and applying the brakes will produce the desired result of stopping the train. This is comparable to AWASE in that no attempt is made to directly oppose power, but control is gained by merging into the power and disabling it.
Please make note of the items in bold, which I added.

This defining of awase is how most of Modern Aikido attempts to work. The "defender" physically, actively merges into the attack. However, this was not how Morihei Ueshiba did things. Primarily, this can be verified by the endless and repetitive and common push tests that Morihei Ueshiba did. Ueshiba stood on the train tracks and did not move. The train stopped and did what Ueshiba wanted it to do, mostly go another route off the tracks.

And how did Ueshiba accomplish this? Let's go back to Tenryu, who stood over 6 feet and weighed a whole lot more than Ueshiba. Tenryu was most definitely the train. Did Ueshiba get off the tracks, use body movement to run alongside, then jump aboard? No, he sat there and Tenryu was the one to be stopped. Flick of the wrist and Tenryu went off his tracks elsewhere.

How? Ueshiba: "I knew the secret of aiki." Not awase. Not the view of awase prevalent in Modern Aikido such as the train example given. Not blending with an attack. Ueshiba knew the secret of aiki which allowed him to make the attacker do what he wanted. Or in more spiritual terms, Ueshiba became the Universe and the attacker (one very small planet) had no other choice than to become part of the Universe and go along with whatever the Universe wanted. It would be silly to think the Universe (you know, that extremely large cosmic body filled with trillions of planets and suns) to get out of the way of a small planet, run alongside it, join with it, and then move it somewhere.

Aiki vs Awase.
Ueshiba=aiki
Modern Aikido=awase
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Old 10-15-2012, 10:32 AM   #68
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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However, this was not how Morihei Ueshiba did things.
I think that this is pretty much how he did things, have a look at this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-wewCJLban8 ( it even has AIKI in its name ).

For your statement to be correct a typical demonstration by the Founder would consist of him not moving at all and ukes rushing and bouncing off him. This is not the case in this video and not in the majority of others. There are some videos of "push tests" such as http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XoDK3...00m42s#t=0m42s but they are easily countable minority rather then "endless and repetitive and common".

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Old 10-15-2012, 11:18 AM   #69
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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For your statement to be correct a typical demonstration by the Founder would consist of him not moving at all and ukes rushing and bouncing off him. This is not the case in this video and not in the majority of others. There are some videos of "push tests" such as http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XoDK3...00m42s#t=0m42s but they are easily countable minority rather then "endless and repetitive and common".
That's not true, David
Aiki has no requirement to stand still or move. In fact the age old "Motion in stillness and stillness in motion" pretty much addresses that idea. So does all of the founders quotes on what aiki is as something he trained within himself (opposing forces, aiki being a circle, the circle being opposing forces, heaven/earth/man dual opposing spirals) all mentioned in relation to movement...within yourself...All of which contradict the idea that it is awase. THAT...happens after.

Awase is done by pretty much every human being in martial arts. It is neither unique or unusual to aikido and requires no aiki at all. The idea of having aiki within you makes the quality of the connection on contact something different.
Aiki in me before aiki between thee and me.
Dan
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Old 10-15-2012, 11:36 AM   #70
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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David Soroko wrote: View Post
I think that this is pretty much how he did things, have a look at this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-wewCJLban8 ( it even has AIKI in its name ).
Yep, and pretty much millions of people training in aikido think this way. And millions of people over 40+ years doing exactly this kind of awase training you subscribe to has produced ... no one of Shioda's level, let alone Ueshiba's. Why can't we do what you're doing, Ueshiba? Because you don't understand inyo. Not, because you don't understand awase.

Quote:
David Soroko wrote: View Post
For your statement to be correct a typical demonstration by the Founder would consist of him not moving at all and ukes rushing and bouncing off him. This is not the case in this video and not in the majority of others. There are some videos of "push tests" such as http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XoDK3...00m42s#t=0m42s but they are easily countable minority rather then "endless and repetitive and common".
For a start, read this thread:
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=14991

Then research it.

Mark
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Old 10-15-2012, 11:40 AM   #71
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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Dan Harden wrote: View Post
That's not true, David
Aiki has no requirement to stand still or move. In fact the age old "Motion in stillness and stillness in motion" pretty much addresses that idea. So does all of the founders quotes on what aiki is as something he trained within himself (opposing forces, aiki being a circle, the circle being opposing forces, heaven/earth/man dual opposing spirals) all mentioned in relation to movement...within yourself...All of which contradict the idea that it is awase. THAT...happens after.

Awase is done by pretty much every human being in martial arts. It is neither unique or unusual to aikido and requires no aiki at all. The idea of having aiki within you makes the quality of the connection on contact something different.
Aiki in me before aiki between thee and me.
Dan
Not moving was merely my interpretation of Mark's statement that
Quote:
The train stopped and did what Ueshiba wanted it to do, mostly go another route off the tracks.
.

If you look at the evidence left by the Founder, you need to consider the whole thing and looking at the videos, in most of them, he is doing waza. A very good waza with a very good awase.

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Old 10-15-2012, 11:46 AM   #72
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

Wouldn't you think at some point the community would be able to answer questions like
  • Why did the founder talk about solo work in discussions of aiki?
  • Why did the founder do Solo training all the time?
  • What were his goals?
  • How did he get such crazy power?
  • How come no one else has it?
  • Was he a one-off?
  • Why did he then point to and use exact terminology for power building from china that also matches Koryu use of the same terminology?
  • How come?
  • Why?
  • What does it mean?
  • Did other people who know about it have power like Ueshiba?
  • Why....why...yes!! They did!!!
  • Why?
  • What is this stuff that others know about?
  • It must be important.
  • How do we do it?

I think those are questions worth consideration by anyone in their own art, but with a founder like Ueshiba? All the more reason to do so.
Dan
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Old 10-15-2012, 11:55 AM   #73
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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Not moving was merely my interpretation of Mark's statement that .
If you look at the evidence left by the Founder, you need to consider the whole thing and looking at the videos, in most of them, he is doing waza. A very good waza with a very good awase.
Hi David
All arts...are displayed through their waza, so why is that anything worth discussing?
Koryu are displayed through their kata
Daito ryu
Aikido
Karate
'The internal arts of China are displayed through their forms and push hands.
The key to what we should be discussing is that the higher level ones all have solo work to make the soft power displayed in the forms. Many would play and display the power as a separate fun thing.

The questions in my last post should then be asked by those who don't have any soft power thatt is measurable within and more importantly without...kata. Just like the founders did
What is someone really doing if not following in these various founders foot steps?
Something better?
Okay!!
Where....are the new legends?
Dan
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Old 10-15-2012, 01:03 PM   #74
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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Mark Murray wrote: View Post
Why can't we do what you're doing, Ueshiba? Because you don't understand inyo. Not, because you don't understand awase.
"AWASE" refers to the same concept as inyo, as the original column read to me.
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Old 10-15-2012, 01:47 PM   #75
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

Hi Dan

It would make concepts more clear and concrete if you will point out the places in the "Budo" film where the Founder is employing Aiki (and not Awase)

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