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Old 10-15-2012, 02:09 PM   #76
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

Quote:
David Soroko wrote: View Post
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)
Hi Joe
No...not really. It doesn't help at all. Why? There is nowhere he isn't employing aiki. Aiki precedes awase and is a constant.
Here:
When asked, his students claimed that when he was escorted on to a mat he had "old man sagging muscles, but when he stepped on the mat, it was like he inflated and became hard as iron."
Why?
How?
What does it mean?
How do you do it?
WHY...would you do it?
How come no one is doing it?
Why isn't it taught in Ueshiba's Aikido?
Why wasn't it researched?
How come no one seems to know- it is an actual teaching and body skill?
What affect does it have on incoming forces?
How does it perfectly match what....he...actually said to do?
How does it resolve your question, this thread and really, three separate threads going on right now?
Any guesses?
Dan
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Old 10-15-2012, 02:12 PM   #77
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
"AWASE" refers to the same concept as inyo, as the original column read to me.
Awase is not in-yo, though it can be a form of it if done a certain way with a balance of forces within you. Otherwise it is just jujutsu; Push when pulled, lead or turn when pushed, it's in many arts. etc.
Dan
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Old 10-15-2012, 02:46 PM   #78
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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Mark Murray wrote: View Post
Aiki vs Awase.
Ueshiba=aiki
Modern Aikido=awase
I think you just repeated yourself without adding anything new.

I'll do the same but more concisely:

Not Aiki vs. Awase. Awase/musubi is a component of takemusu aiki.

Ueshiba = Aiki = no argument but you are trying to make one out of an example of Osensei using kokyu ryoku (another component) on Tenryu.

Modern Aikido = all kinds of awase (go no sen, sen no sen, OODA loop, compliance etc).

Regards

Carl
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Old 10-15-2012, 02:48 PM   #79
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
Awase is not in-yo, though it can be a form of it if done a certain way with a balance of forces within you. Otherwise it is just jujutsu; Push when pulled, lead or turn when pushed, it's in many arts. etc.
Dan
Agreed
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Old 10-15-2012, 03:54 PM   #80
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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.
A quote from the tai chi classics that appears in quotes from Ueshiba as well. It also appears in the little black book of basic principles that Koichi Tohei used to hand out.

Best,

Chris

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Old 10-15-2012, 03:56 PM   #81
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

Quote:
Carl Thompson wrote: View Post

Not Aiki vs. Awase. Awase/musubi is a component of takemusu aiki.
I would say that awase is an effect rather than a cause. It may seem like quibbling, but I think that it ends up making a rather significant difference.

Best,

Chris

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Old 10-15-2012, 03:59 PM   #82
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

Quote:
Carl Thompson wrote: View Post
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.
Well, yes, wasn't that how the conversation started?

Quote:
Carl Thompson wrote: View Post
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?
Yes, although I knew much less then than I do now, and by the time I was getting deeper into this the elder Saito was too ill to interact with very much.

Best,

Chris

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Old 10-15-2012, 05:51 PM   #83
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
Hi Joe
No...not really. It doesn't help at all. Why? There is nowhere he isn't employing aiki. Aiki precedes awase and is a constant.
Here:
When asked, his students claimed that when he was escorted on to a mat he had "old man sagging muscles, but when he stepped on the mat, it was like he inflated and became hard as iron."
Why?
How?
What does it mean?
How do you do it?
WHY...would you do it?
How come no one is doing it?
Why isn't it taught in Ueshiba's Aikido?
Why wasn't it researched?
How come no one seems to know- it is an actual teaching and body skill?
What affect does it have on incoming forces?
How does it perfectly match what....he...actually said to do?
How does it resolve your question, this thread and really, three separate threads going on right now?
Any guesses?
Dan
My name is David and the Founder in "Budo" is middle aged and shows no sign of sagging.

You seem to say that the Founder shows Aiki thought the "Budo". Is this the case for all other filmed demonstrations of the Founder? Is there a video of Aikido demonstration by someone other than Morihei Usshiba that manifests Aiki?

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Old 10-16-2012, 10:03 AM   #84
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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Christopher Li wrote: View Post
I would say that awase is an effect rather than a cause. It may seem like quibbling, but I think that it ends up making a rather significant difference.
It does seem a little quibbling: Are you now saying awase (musubi) is something that happens as a result of Aiki, even though earlier in this thread you considered the idea that awase could actually be Aiki, as a question?
Quote:
Christopher Li wrote: View Post
Yes, although I knew much less then than I do now, and by the time I was getting deeper into this the elder Saito was too ill to interact with very much.
Saito Sensei passed away a decade ago in 2002 so this isn't quite the current IP/Aiki situation I meant. In any case, I think you were lucky, even if you couldn't interact much with Saito Shihan. I missed out on that myself.

Did you get to meet or train with any of the other old sempai?

Regards

Carl
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Old 10-16-2012, 10:54 AM   #85
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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Carl Thompson wrote: View Post
It does seem a little quibbling: Are you now saying awase (musubi) is something that happens as a result of Aiki, even though earlier in this thread you considered the idea that awase could actually be Aiki, as a question?
I've never said anything different. What I'm saying is that awase is not really an ingredient of the cake, it's an effect - like getting fat from eating the cake.

You might see the two always occurring together, but the cause and effect are really seperate - and trying to mix one into the other doesn't really work all that well.

Quote:
Carl Thompson wrote: View Post
Saito Sensei passed away a decade ago in 2002 so this isn't quite the current IP/Aiki situation I meant. In any case, I think you were lucky, even if you couldn't interact much with Saito Shihan. I missed out on that myself.

Did you get to meet or train with any of the other old sempai?

Regards

Carl
Well, I saw Saito before he was ill - but by the time I had really started looking more into this stuff he was already in a wheelchair.

Best,

Chris

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Old 10-16-2012, 11:26 AM   #86
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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David Soroko wrote: View Post
My name is David and the Founder in "Budo" is middle aged and shows no sign of sagging.
You seem to say that the Founder shows Aiki thought the "Budo". Is this the case for all other filmed demonstrations of the Founder? Is there a video of Aikido demonstration by someone other than Morihei Usshiba that manifests Aiki?
Oops Sorry David
His muscles sagging had nothing to do with it-although part of the way power is made manifest is expressed in that "change." It is the meaning behind his release the mountain echo saying. Actually, it is one of the reasons you get more powerful as you get older. Yes, I know you don't understand how or why. That's okay. Look around you...very few budo people do either.

Other guys? Sagawa, Kodo, Shioda, Shirata, Mochizuki, Tomiki...
All had solo training drills for their body. Why? The answer lies in the essential point-one that Sagawa made as well as Ueshiba- in that aiki begins in the body.The current practice and teaching is terribly inefficient and missing critical information. If the current practice and teaching that people are debating and defending has ever....got anyone to where Ueshiba was pointing and leading then;
Tell me why they can't explain or translate what he said and do it?
Tell me who has his power.
Introduce me to their students with power.
I have listed a series of questions here many times that no one can resolve or answer. They are clear, clean and precise.

Again, many of the greats (before Ueshiba) all said the same thing, and it matches what was taught in China and in Koryu and Ueshiba was just another guy doing the work and pointing there as well. It is the resolving of energy within you first that creates aiki. Ueshiba went on and on about it. I am quite clearly stating that modern aikido doesn't teach it or even understand what their very founder was talking about...yet....
This work is old and known.
The work is definitive and correct.
The work is accurate, and replicable.
And it made budo giants throughout history.

So,
I'd again state for the record
Find yourself unusually powerful (soft power) men.
Find someone who has verifiable students with power (that means they can teach)
Find more than one.
See what they are doing and talking about.
We...yes I am an active part in this... need to once again make Aikido one of the most powerful arts on earth. To do so, we need to change what is being taught.
Dan
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Old 10-16-2012, 03:42 PM   #87
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
I have listed a series of questions here many times that no one can resolve or answer. They are clear, clean and precise.
No, they aren't even questions. They are you telling everyone else what they can't do in question form.

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
Tell me who has his power.
Introduce me to their students with power.
Do some research. You've mentioned Shioda, Mochizuki and other lineages... even outside of Aikido there is Aunkai and other arts that include it.

Quote:
Christopher Li wrote: View Post
I've never said anything different. What I'm saying is that awase is not really an ingredient of the cake, it's an effect - like getting fat from eating the cake.
Well you said...
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 think you need to compare notes with someone who learned awase/musubi from Osensei who can interact with you more.
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Old 10-16-2012, 05:14 PM   #88
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

Hello,

So it seems clear now...when you have trained yourself to manifest aiki, you can choose match(awase) with your opponent(uke) or not, because you are on the floating bridge!!! ;0)

Cool,

ChrisW

PS Maybe that's why Takeda sometimes tended to seem selfcentered to those who were too sensitive to understand what he was doing... Neanderthal!!!
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Old 10-16-2012, 05:45 PM   #89
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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Dan Harden wrote: View Post
Oops Sorry David

Tell me who has his power.

Dan
Maybe I'm being flippant but this always makes me laugh.....at what point in time should we compare ourselves and others I wonder?

At 37 years old can I expect to have the power of Ueshiba at 60/70/80? ...lol..though at 37 was he that good?..who knows ^^ does it even matter? everyone gets all intense and in a fervour over wanting to be all powerful..maybe it's an American thing ^^

Lee
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Old 10-16-2012, 06:35 PM   #90
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
Oops Sorry David
His muscles sagging had nothing to do with it-although part of the way power is made manifest is expressed in that "change." It is the meaning behind his release the mountain echo saying. Actually, it is one of the reasons you get more powerful as you get older. Yes, I know you don't understand how or why. That's okay. Look around you...very few budo people do either.

Other guys? Sagawa, Kodo, Shioda, Shirata, Mochizuki, Tomiki...
All had solo training drills for their body. Why? The answer lies in the essential point-one that Sagawa made as well as Ueshiba- in that aiki begins in the body.The current practice and teaching is terribly inefficient and missing critical information. If the current practice and teaching that people are debating and defending has ever....got anyone to where Ueshiba was pointing and leading then;
Tell me why they can't explain or translate what he said and do it?
Tell me who has his power.
Introduce me to their students with power.
I have listed a series of questions here many times that no one can resolve or answer. They are clear, clean and precise.

Again, many of the greats (before Ueshiba) all said the same thing, and it matches what was taught in China and in Koryu and Ueshiba was just another guy doing the work and pointing there as well. It is the resolving of energy within you first that creates aiki. Ueshiba went on and on about it. I am quite clearly stating that modern aikido doesn't teach it or even understand what their very founder was talking about...yet....
This work is old and known.
The work is definitive and correct.
The work is accurate, and replicable.
And it made budo giants throughout history.

So,
I'd again state for the record
Find yourself unusually powerful (soft power) men.
Find someone who has verifiable students with power (that means they can teach)
Find more than one.
See what they are doing and talking about.
We...yes I am an active part in this... need to once again make Aikido one of the most powerful arts on earth. To do so, we need to change what is being taught.
Dan
Thanks for taking the time to reply.

I think that your statements can be split up into two categories:

1. there is a superior way of practising martial arts (and specifically Aikido) which you cultivate, it is soft, internal etc....
2. your practice is the same practice that the Founder and some of his students engaged in.

My questions are about the second category only. With this in mind, where in "Budo" ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-wewCJLban8 ) does the Founder demonstrate this? In this post: http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpo...0&postcount=76, you say that "There is nowhere he isn't employing aiki". Could you choose a segment of the video (just a few seconds) and explain how, in that segment, the practice is manifested?

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Old 10-17-2012, 07:33 AM   #91
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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David Soroko wrote: View Post
2. your practice is the same practice that the Founder and some of his students engaged in.

My questions are about the second category only. With this in mind, where in "Budo" ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-wewCJLban8 ) does the Founder demonstrate this? In this post: http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpo...0&postcount=76, you say that "There is nowhere he isn't employing aiki". Could you choose a segment of the video (just a few seconds) and explain how, in that segment, the practice is manifested?
This goes straight back to the subject of the thread. People have a hard time (I did) wrapping their heads around a concept that they haven't experienced.

Modern Aikido defines awase in a way that means tori/nage/whatever is doing something, usually physical, to create a connection with uke. The train example was very good. And then people in Modern Aikido equate this principle of awase with aiki. They see them as synonymous, but, they aren't.

There was a reason Sagawa, Horikawa, Ueshiba said aiki was a body changing method. Not technique. Not something they did to an uke. It was something they became. When a student asked Ueshiba what was aiki, Ueshiba yelled, I am aiki. He meant it. When Pranin mentioned to Mrs. Horikawa, the secret is something you see and steal, she replied, no, it was something in the body (paraphrasing greatly here). Sagawa stated aiki was body changing.

There is no "practice" of aiki manifested in viewing the video. Ueshiba, literally, is aiki in each second of that video. Aiki is not awase as defined by most Modern Aikido people. Which is where people have a hard time coming to terms with the concept of Ueshiba's aiki. At least on the Internet. In person, there's no debate that the two (aiki and awase) are completely different.

Mark
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Old 10-17-2012, 07:42 AM   #92
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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Mark Murray wrote: View Post
In person, there's no debate that the two (aiki and awase) are completely different.
Why then, it is invisible in the video?

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Old 10-17-2012, 08:13 AM   #93
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

Quote:
Mark Murray wrote: View Post
This goes straight back to the subject of the thread. People have a hard time (I did) wrapping their heads around a concept that they haven't experienced.

Modern Aikido defines awase in a way that means tori/nage/whatever is doing something, usually physical, to create a connection with uke. The train example was very good. And then people in Modern Aikido equate this principle of awase with aiki. They see them as synonymous, but, they aren't.

There was a reason Sagawa, Horikawa, Ueshiba said aiki was a body changing method. Not technique. Not something they did to an uke. It was something they became. When a student asked Ueshiba what was aiki, Ueshiba yelled, I am aiki. He meant it. When Pranin mentioned to Mrs. Horikawa, the secret is something you see and steal, she replied, no, it was something in the body (paraphrasing greatly here). Sagawa stated aiki was body changing.

There is no "practice" of aiki manifested in viewing the video. Ueshiba, literally, is aiki in each second of that video. Aiki is not awase as defined by most Modern Aikido people. Which is where people have a hard time coming to terms with the concept of Ueshiba's aiki. At least on the Internet. In person, there's no debate that the two (aiki and awase) are completely different.

Mark
Are you sure those people said those things, and that you really understand what they said?

Why do you believe there is any way for you to know what Takeda, Ueshiba, etc were training in private, not teaching to most students, or hiding in plain sight?
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Old 10-17-2012, 08:26 AM   #94
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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David Soroko wrote: View Post
Why then, it is invisible in the video?
It is there if you know what to look for. Watch how Ueshiba moves; he is connected and balanced at all times; and when one thing moves, all things move. This is easily seen in the beginning when he does the two drills - look at how he looks when he moves compared to what the students are doing; Ueshiba is connected with good balance and structure and none of the students are - difference is aiki in him and no aiki in them.

Greg
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Old 10-17-2012, 09:14 AM   #95
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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Mark Murray wrote: View Post
In person, there's no debate that the two (aiki and awase) are completely different.
Mark...

You repeated yourself yet again.

I told you awase/musubi is part of Takemusu Aiki, Christopher Li gave you his version as an effect of Aiki, Dan Harden said it is not inyo but can be a form of it...

... and yet you persist with this strawman that thinks 'awase = aiki'.

In person there is no debate indeed... I think you haven't trained with Alexander Sensei, in which case how would you know that he is practising a form of modern awase?

Regards

Carl
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Old 10-17-2012, 09:32 AM   #96
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
Are you sure those people said those things, and that you really understand what they said?

Why do you believe there is any way for you to know what Takeda, Ueshiba, etc were training in private, not teaching to most students, or hiding in plain sight?
a. Because it all fits into the nature of this work; practiced, discussed and disseminated for ages.
b. They said it...because it happens to be true.

I know people keep trying to make their own guy some sort of hero and unique genius. But they were all just playing with information that spanned generations and cultures.

Solo training was king for eons. Why...do so many of the high level arts, do solo training? The idea of cancellation and neutralization of force begin inside you, not outside of you. And the changing of the inside has a dramatic effect on the outside.
Dynamic stability
If you try and throw a large statue by pulling; you will eventually be pulled off your feet -toward the statue.
If you try to push on the statue, you will eventually be pushed back off your feet -away from the statue.
The statue did nothing but be a statue.
Manipulation of forces
Now, what if the statue had soft tissue and could play with it's own forces inside of itself? What if it could then move while retaining all of -that- while in motion?
Anyone attempting to play with it...would be screwed until they became like it.

Solo training is irrefutably important.
Remember Sagawa admitted to lying to his own students about it for 50 years.
Sagawa also did not want his book-explaining why aiki was about changing the body-translated into English!!
Why?
Takeda said never teach white people and NEVER talk about solo training
Why?
Ueshiba never explained why he was doing certain exercises, yet all of his descriptions were the result of internal training. In fact many of his doka were quotes of Koryu and Chinese Internal training models.
Daito ryu has a public history of stating that you should only teach one or two people

The body must change and the source of Aiki was never in waza, never in blending, or external tenkan. It is not a coincidence that those who state such things were amazing, and felt different than everyone else. They focused on solo training and the classic models and ... weirdly....strangely...they feel different and were famous.

The hard part for all of us was being misled. I am not going to argue whether it was on purpose or not, through ignorance or not. The plain facts are that the vast majority of people in the great Ocean of budo are all more or less average people trying to do things and work things that in the end...well...make them feel no different than from the day they started. As shihan they are plagued with the same issues as a shodan; too much muscle, too much shoulder, moving from the hips, too tight, one side weighted, moving disconnected and offing themselves under load, or tensing up against resistance, not having any real explanation for what moving from the center really means and what a dantian even is, and end up having a structure and a body that was custom designed and tailored made.... to be thrown by virtually every budo principle known to man.

That..in itself is very revealing. Most of these principles came from Asia. And yet here we are....practicing Asian arts with Asians... and we end up custom made to be thrown by them with no idea, no teaching, of how and why we can blow all of those principles up, just by changing our own bodies!!!
I have no intention of spending the next twenty years trying to feel like your average Tom Dick and Harry. It just doesn't seem like a smart idea to me. I am going to continue to pursue the aiki that is a balance of in/yo in me, just like Ueshiba said to do.

Dan
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Old 10-17-2012, 09:33 AM   #97
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
Are you sure those people said those things, and that you really understand what they said?
I am sure, for the former. At least as much as basic translation can provide. Translating those kinds of answers isn't as hard as translating Ueshiba's spiritual talks. Which, then goes to your second question. You have all the students stating that they had trouble understanding Ueshiba when he talked about the spiritual stuff. But, using Chris Li's translation, it's understandable to me (and others) and actually points to specific training methods. But, it only became understandable when I started training Ueshiba's aiki and the more direct (non Stevens altered) translations became available. No dig against Stevens, here, as he is the one who actually stated his translations were loose and changed from the original direct meanings.

Quote:
Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
Why do you believe there is any way for you to know what Takeda, Ueshiba, etc were training in private, not teaching to most students, or hiding in plain sight?
By correlation of personal experiences. I've found that there were specific exercises and training methods that Ueshiba taught specific students, all outside Tokyo hombu, that I have yet to see being shown or taught by any of the Japanese shihan sent from Tokyo hombu. (That just means I have yet to see it, doesn't mean it is nonexistant.) But, back to the specific exercises and training methods. Those were, at times, exactly what I learned elsewhere. They were, at times, very, very close. But, all of them were directly related to training Daito ryu aiki, i.e. Ueshiba's aiki. Not at all like Modern Aikido's definition of aiki. The problem I saw, though, was that each group had different parts of the whole (whole being defined by the entirety of what I was training, not the entirety of aiki training) that I was being shown. In other words, my training encompassed all of their scattered parts, not the other way around. I'm still learning and putting pieces together, and there are lots of places Ueshiba taught outside Tokyo hombu that could possibly have more pieces. Actually, probably do.

End of the day, though, Ueshiba's aiki, Sagawa's aiki, Horikawa's aiki, were all the same, trained nearly the same, but expressed in their own personal way.
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Old 10-17-2012, 10:20 AM   #98
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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Carl Thompson wrote: View Post
Mark...

You repeated yourself yet again.

I told you awase/musubi is part of Takemusu Aiki, Christopher Li gave you his version as an effect of Aiki, Dan Harden said it is not inyo but can be a form of it...

... and yet you persist with this strawman that thinks 'awase = aiki'.

In person there is no debate indeed... I think you haven't trained with Alexander Sensei, in which case how would you know that he is practising a form of modern awase?

Regards

Carl
No, I haven't trained with David Alexander. I'm sure I would enjoy doing so. If I get the opportunity, I will. However, when he states this:

"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."

Then that tells me that how he is defining awase is not the definition of Ueshiba's aiki. It tells me that those two are not the same. And by most accounts, how David Alexander is defining awase is the Modern Aikido definition and that example is also used to define Modern Aikido's aiki. So, when you say, " awase/musubi is part of Takemusu Aiki", I have to respond, no, it isn't. Not going by what was posted. It wouldn't fit with Ueshiba's aiki. Modern Aikido's version of aiki, yes. But those two are functionally different.

As always, in my opinion and experiences.
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Old 10-17-2012, 11:37 AM   #99
Cliff Judge
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

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Dan Harden wrote: View Post
a. Because it all fits into the nature of this work; practiced, discussed and disseminated for ages.
b. They said it...because it happens to be true.
I appreciate the answer, Dan, but this is begging the question. i was asking Mark to describe why he thinks what he is talking about has any actual connection to Ueshiba or Takeda, and how he knows it is correct to call it aiki.

You are responding with "The reason I am pretty sure that this is what Ueshiba was doing is because I am pretty sure this is what Ueshiba was doing."

I have it on good account that what you are doing is good, valid stuff, but I haven't seen any reason to believe it has anything to do with what Ueshiba was doing.
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Old 10-17-2012, 11:49 AM   #100
Cliff Judge
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Re: VoE: AWASE - The Principle of AIKI

Quote:
Mark Murray wrote: View Post
I am sure, for the former. At least as much as basic translation can provide. Translating those kinds of answers isn't as hard as translating Ueshiba's spiritual talks. Which, then goes to your second question. You have all the students stating that they had trouble understanding Ueshiba when he talked about the spiritual stuff. But, using Chris Li's translation, it's understandable to me (and others) and actually points to specific training methods. But, it only became understandable when I started training Ueshiba's aiki and the more direct (non Stevens altered) translations became available. No dig against Stevens, here, as he is the one who actually stated his translations were loose and changed from the original direct meanings.

By correlation of personal experiences. I've found that there were specific exercises and training methods that Ueshiba taught specific students, all outside Tokyo hombu, that I have yet to see being shown or taught by any of the Japanese shihan sent from Tokyo hombu. (That just means I have yet to see it, doesn't mean it is nonexistant.) But, back to the specific exercises and training methods. Those were, at times, exactly what I learned elsewhere. They were, at times, very, very close. But, all of them were directly related to training Daito ryu aiki, i.e. Ueshiba's aiki. Not at all like Modern Aikido's definition of aiki. The problem I saw, though, was that each group had different parts of the whole (whole being defined by the entirety of what I was training, not the entirety of aiki training) that I was being shown. In other words, my training encompassed all of their scattered parts, not the other way around. I'm still learning and putting pieces together, and there are lots of places Ueshiba taught outside Tokyo hombu that could possibly have more pieces. Actually, probably do.

End of the day, though, Ueshiba's aiki, Sagawa's aiki, Horikawa's aiki, were all the same, trained nearly the same, but expressed in their own personal way.
So you have read some text, in translation, of material that not even the direct students themselves are comfortable stating that they understand, but it is so clear to you that you actually know what the specific training methods are?

Can you provide some details about these personal experiences you have correlated? Are you talking about your personal experiences that you have had travelling around Japan or something? Or are you talking about other's personal experiences that you have informed yourself of textually? It is the latter, right?

You are continually contrasting what you call "Modern Aikido" with something that you consider to be "Ueshiba's Aiki." I don't see how you have any logical basis to claim any knowledge of "Ueshiba's Aiki." CERTAINLY you do not have any logical basis to challenge someone who trained closely with someone who trained closely with Ueshiba, on what is or is not the essence of Aikido.

But I don't really understand why it matters so much. So "Modern Aikido" doesn't do it for you, and you've found some new way to train that helps you progress along a path that you like better. Why not call it, like "21st century internal power training," or "Internal Strength Methods Inspired by Various Japanese and Chinese Systems," or "Old men in t-shirts pushing on each other with confused looks on their faces."
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