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Old 06-15-2015, 03:27 PM   #51
Cliff Judge
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

Quote:
Erick Mead wrote: View Post
Hence my pity and concern on this point -- But which is easier to change -- your mind or your bodily organs? Which is harsher -- a sober reflection and acceptance of an unwanted truth of the body -- or a bloodied scalpel to try to cut way the parts that do not fit a mere image drawn in the mind.
Most transgender people do not seek sex reassignment beyond hormone therapy. For transgendered men there aren't many more options anyway.
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Old 06-15-2015, 03:53 PM   #52
Erick Mead
 
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

Quote:
Matthew Gano wrote: View Post
"As soon as you concern yourself with the 'good' and 'bad' of your fellows, you create an opening in your heart for maliciousness to enter."
For what it's worth, the context of the quote is against testing and competition -- not about judging good or evil acts or choices. But see:
Quote:
Morihei Ueshiba wrote:
Failure is the key to success; each mistake teaches us something.
To see a mistake that is not recognized -- and fail to point it out -- that is a failure to teach. For more in the quote-quest:

Quote:
Morihei Ueshiba wrote:
The Art of Peace is not easy. It is a fight to the finish, the slaying of evil desires and all falsehood within. On occasion the Voice of Peace resounds like thunder, jolting human beings out of their stupor.
Quote:
Morihei Ueshiba wrote:
In order to establish heaven on earth, we need a Budo that is pure in spirit, that is devoid of hatred and greed. It must follow natural principles and harmonize the material with the spiritual.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
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Old 06-15-2015, 04:47 PM   #53
mathewjgano
 
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

Quote:
Erick Mead wrote: View Post
For what it's worth, the context of the quote is against testing and competition -- not about judging good or evil acts or choices.
"Testing, competing with, and criticizing others weakens and defeats you." This is the rest of the quote I found. I think it extends beyond shiai, but maybe O Sensei would disagree with me.

I agree we should all offer our views where we think they have merit, but there is a fine line between the kind of criticism I think he was talking about and the altruistic instruction you seem to be referring to. I also think you could have used better terms, that were more respectful, and you're seeing the natural consequence of that.
It's one thing to be in the role of chosen teacher and it's another thing to be in the role of self-imposed teacher. You're dismissing a lot of people's worldviews as mere phantasms, and while you might be bringing the proverbial thunder to shake up the sleeping mind, be careful you don't forget to listen, too, lest your dream of thunder causes you to miss the real thing.
...and of course, I'll be doing my best to do the same, because really, who can tell who is delusional and who is not. Were that there was an easy litmus test and not this sloppy, self-discovering-as-we-go, petri dish, floating through bloodboiling space. (Feeling poetic today )
Cheers!

Gambarimashyo!
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Old 06-15-2015, 07:42 PM   #54
Keith Larman
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

Quote:
Erick Mead wrote: View Post
What you all see as a courageous decision to transcend biological limits in service of some metaphysical image of the self
Now you're projecting. Whether it is "courageous" or not is a different topic altogether.

Quote:
Erick Mead wrote: View Post
-- I see as a simple tendency toward objective self-harm.
And that is in direct contradiction with modern research and displays a profoundly ignorant, naive and simplistic point of view. You simply do *not* know what you're talking about and *every* comment you have made has reaffirmed that observation. This area is not controversial in any of the circles where these issues are studied. Your gross oversimplification and callous "waving away" of the nature and emotional import of this issue is a huge problem for those dealing with these issues and it is disturbing to say the least to see it here.

I spent all of 10 seconds in google to find this page. Those interested might start here.

http://www.apa.org/topics/lgbt/transgender.aspx

Sheesh.

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Old 06-16-2015, 07:29 AM   #55
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

I don't think that we want to get into a contest of credentials here, but I must agree with Keith's observation that Erick's view seems unleavened by experience or exposure to transpeople beyond shallow caricatures. I think of the transpeople I know -- mere acquaintances, close friends, coworkers, people, PEOPLE running the gamut of human expression. Some of them I only knew after transition; others, I was there for the whole ride. That doesn't make me any expert on the trans experience, but it does disprove Erick's assertions, each and every one. That's good enough for me.

If a transperson were to join our dojo, I believe my dojo community would find a way over any awkwardness with an open heart. I honestly don't think having a MTF transperson in the women's dressing room in this dojo would be an issue for the women of our dojo -- yes, I'm guessing, but I'm guessing about people that I know very well. It may help that for us, being in a dressing room is not a sexualized experience -- an attitude that I think all grownups should share, but as illogical as it is, I understand why they don't. But then, you get the same fear from some heterosexuals that there might be a gay person in the locker room, looking at them with lust in their heart. This is illogical again: while heterosexuals in most western cultures have very limited experience in situations combining nudity and members of the attractive-to-them gender, gay folk deal with this from the time we first enter a locker room, and quickly learn that bad porn aside, the reality is really not a sexualized situation. Nor need it be for transpeople. My main concern would be to respect the transperson's privacy and doubtless complete exasperation with many cispeople's prurient curiosity. I think once the transperson got to know our dojo, it might just be a complete non-issue. But that's all speculation on my part. What I feel I can say with certainty is, we'd handle it with decency and compassion and a lack of judgment, and it would turn out okay.
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Old 06-16-2015, 07:47 AM   #56
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

What Mary said, for sure.

And that everyone treat each other with respect including the transgender person.

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Old 06-16-2015, 09:28 AM   #57
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

I still remember the shock (names and places not mentioned) when an aikido teacher I had previously visited informed me by letter that he was now a she and then the basic feeling how little difference it made - at least to me - followed. I had heard later that not all previous relationships were so accepting but really, for the life of me, I don't understand what this has to do with aikido.

Do I understand what causes a person to go that route - no. Do I personally think this is a viable way to go - no again. But neither negative affects how their aikido affects me or their ability to do aikido.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 06-16-2015, 10:12 AM   #58
Dan Rubin
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
I honestly don't think having a MTF transperson in the women's dressing room in this dojo would be an issue for the women of our dojo -- yes, I'm guessing, but I'm guessing about people that I know very well.
Do you think it would be an issue for parents of female children in your dojo?
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Old 06-16-2015, 10:35 AM   #59
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

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Dan Rubin wrote: View Post
Do you think it would be an issue for parents of female children in your dojo?
I can't speak for Mary, but it probably wouldn't even come up at my dojo. Most of the kids don't change at the dojo anyway, and when they do they are generally gone before the adults arrive. There's also the restroom down the hall for anyone -- adult or child -- who wants a bit more privacy.

Katherine
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Old 06-16-2015, 10:45 AM   #60
Keith Larman
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

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Katherine Derbyshire wrote: View Post
I can't speak for Mary, but it probably wouldn't even come up at my dojo. Most of the kids don't change at the dojo anyway, and when they do they are generally gone before the adults arrive. There's also the restroom down the hall for anyone -- adult or child -- who wants a bit more privacy.

Katherine
I'll echo Katherine's comment. We have a large kids program and without exception the little ones come in their little gi (cute as hell too). A lot of them wear their gi right over their jeans and t-shirts. When they get older (as in 13 and up) they sometimes start changing at the dojo dressing rooms. But again, if *anyone* ever feels *they* (notice where the emphasis lies here) need more privacy, the bathroom is always an option. But for the kids it is basically a non-issue.

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Old 06-16-2015, 12:26 PM   #61
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

Quote:
Dan Rubin wrote: View Post
Do you think it would be an issue for parents of female children in your dojo?
I don't know, because 1)there's a lot more turnover in the kids' program and 2)I don't know any of their parents that well. No doubt they've sucked up the standard bigotries of the society around them, so statistically, I am willing to bet that someone would have an Issue.

But I also think we need to distinguish between substantive issues involving another person's actual honest-to-god problematic behavior, and one's own feeling of discomfort in the presence of difference. If a person is leering at others in a dressing room, or making personal comments, or god forbid making inappropriate physical contact, those are substantive issues. If a person is merely present in the dressing room, doing what everyone else is doing there and minding their own business, and you feel uncomfortable because they're there and they're somehow different than you? At that point, I think it's on you to change your own attitude or your own behavior. Either remain in the uncomfortable situation (and hopefully learn to get over it), or leave. Expecting someone else to leave because you're uncomfortable with who they are? Not reasonable and not an option.

Here in the US, we've seen a lot of uproar caused by this sort of discomfort. In my lifetime, I've seen a lot. I've heard people make slighting comments, express that they were disturbed, make remarks to the effect of "why do you have to ruin it for everyone" when a mixed-race couple came to a function. Flip the calendar, I've heard the same kind of remarks about same-sex couples. Jews in the country club, a black ballerina in the New York City Ballet, a male city councilor talking about "my husband" instead of "my wife", a woman in a computer lab...why do they have to do this to us? Really, why do they all have to be so pushy? Why do they have to shove it down our throats? Why can't they just...just...go somewhere else? Why do they have to be here, ruining everything???

I am not a transperson. I am not a trans-rights activist. I'm just a human being. It's just, in my lifetime I have seen so much of this kind of bullshit. I've seen it directed at others, I've seen it directed at me. When challenged, the perpetrators and apologists frequently claim that it's really not that big a deal, and why can't Those People just let it go? But I don't think you get to say whether it's a big deal when it's not your nose being skinned. I don't think you get to say that your comfort is more important than someone else's educational opportunity, job opportunity, career advancement, political participation, you name it.

On one side of the scale, we have substantive issues.
On the other side, we have mental comfort.
Do you think the two sides weigh equally? Do you?
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Old 06-16-2015, 04:18 PM   #62
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

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Keith Larman wrote: View Post
And that is in direct contradiction with modern research and displays a profoundly ignorant, naive and simplistic point of view. You simply do *not* know what you're talking about and *every* comment you have made has reaffirmed that observation. ... http://www.apa.org/topics/lgbt/transgender.aspx
Hmmm.... The then-trendy "modern" research of eugenics told Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes it was just peachy to sterilize a woman against her will just because she was deemed of below-average intelligence and "three generations of imbeciles are enough ..." He is worth quoting:
Quote:
The principle that sustains compulsory vaccination is broad enough to cover cutting the Fallopian tubes.
It later appeared that the unfortunate 18 year-old Carrie Buck had been committed as "feeble-minded," only after she had been raped by a nephew of her guardian, and the whole cruel endeavor was a ruse to save face for the family. Her sister Doris was sterilized without even her knowledge during an appendectomy. Much evil is done in the name of "modern research," so forgive me if I take more critical view of such authorities.

There are not enough pixels to unpack the problems of basic thinking in that APA link, beginning with the first sentence:
Quote:
"Sex is assigned at birth, refers to one's biological status as either male or female, and is associated primarily with physical attributes such as chromosomes, hormone prevalence, and external and internal anatomy.
<<sigh>> I'll just take that apart, and the gender sentence that follows and leave it at that.

1. Sex is not a quality that is "assigned," and does not merely "refer to one's biological status." Sex IS that biological status. All experts lay claim to is their opinion based on their learning. No consensus of experts can change an empirical fact. As Senator Moynihan said, we are all entitled to our own opinions; we are not entitled to our own facts. Sex is among those facts, notwithstanding that the binary categories do not capture some very narrow margins of indeterminate type.

2. To be perfectly correct, the APA still fails to include the 0.2% of all manner of chromosal or development inter-sex conditions, and who truly are either persons of "other sex," or functionally speaking, "non-sexed" persons as a consequence. In a perfect world such conditions,would be a simple observation like "non-redheaded." Alas, it is not a perfect world. There is nothing at all wrong with "other" where that is simply the factual truth. There is a lot wrong with it when the facts are plainly otherwise.

3. The APA "gender" definition that follows is adequate as far as it goes -- and for people whose biological condition places them into a "tween"-gender or non-gendered social category, there is a genuine need for education and a better way for such people to feel they have a welcome place in a strongly gendered culture. IMO the current way is only strengthening the binary and superficial aspects of gendered appearance and manners over the much less categorical substance of a person's being and actions.

4. An earlier time held that socially-deemed binary gender roles should absolutely control over those with true biological intersex conditions, and a sad era of "sex-assignment" surgeries for such children ensued -- The "sex is assigned" view of the world should rightly be sent to the dustbin of history, and right behind it, the "sex is chosen" view. Absolutist engineering approaches have since been rejected in cases of biologically-acquired gender confusion. Why this is suddenly OK for people with culturally-acquired gender issues and no sexual ambiguity at all is mystifying to me. It is a category error of exactly the same type to say that personally-deemed gender should control over one's biological sex to the point of physically altering it. A seeming bizarre place for the Nieztchean will-to-power to assert itself over the ontological or phenomenological approaches to life and its problems, but here we are.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
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Old 06-16-2015, 06:19 PM   #63
Keith Larman
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

Gigantic balls on you there. I suppose the APA just doesn't know what it's talking about. After all, you quoted Oliver Wendell Holmes! Very, very good! And brought in Eugenics. And because they get that wrong back then, well, that's why we should ignore all research today. Yup, solid, Erick, as usual. Cherry picked, dishonest irrelevant, and self-serving. You are a real piece of work.

Keep digging, Erick, if only to convince yourself.

Ignore.

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Old 06-16-2015, 10:41 PM   #64
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Tongue Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

Quote:
Keith Larman wrote: View Post
Gigantic balls on you there. I suppose the APA just doesn't know what it's talking about.
. Well, when you've deposed a couple of neuropsychologists, let's talk, shall we ? Until then, yeah. They don' t, in my professional forensic opinion, on this point. "Psychology" is the study of the mind and mental processes in terms practical and adaptational. Their purpose is to make people more mentally and emotionally functional... not to make moral or metaphysical changes in their points of view.

The American Psychological Association has nothing authoritative to say about the nature of the body, its sexual functions or the primacy of mind over body or body over mind. The first are biological questions and the latter are metaphysical issues. Psychologists simply observe what people do and how they think and feel about it, and how adaptive or effective those are or aren't to their circumstances. Useful generally, but hardly definitive on this topic.

Unless you just look for any colorable authority to end a discussion. In which case, let me accommodate you, kind sir:

oh. please. stop. make it stop. aaagh. the authority. it burns..... stop. please.

Better now?

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
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Old 06-16-2015, 11:41 PM   #65
kewms
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

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Ben White wrote: View Post
My hope would be that an Aikido dojo would be the last place that anyone would find discrimination based on race or gender, especially if we take the founders philosophy on Aikido being the art of peace for all people?
Sadly, I think this thread answers your question.

Katherine
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Old 06-16-2015, 11:44 PM   #66
kewms
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

I keep trying to escape, but they keep dragging me back...

The irony of using the history of eugenics to justify a thoroughly patronizing, paternalistic attitude would be quite amusing if it weren't so sad.

Katherine
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Old 06-17-2015, 07:53 AM   #67
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

Quote:
Erick Mead wrote: View Post
. Well, when you've deposed a couple of neuropsychologists, let's talk, shall we ?
Credentialism: the refuge of those who would really rather not deal with the facts on the ground.
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Old 06-17-2015, 10:52 AM   #68
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

This has clearly devolved into a discussion of transgender itself and has nothing to do with how it fits in a dojo student/teacher setting. It's one thing to slide in an opinion while talking about how to deal with potential issues...this is something else.
Take care.

Gambarimashyo!
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Old 06-17-2015, 11:35 AM   #69
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

Quote:
Keith Larman wrote: View Post
Cherry picked, dishonest irrelevant, and self-serving.
Ok, no cherry picking then; I once met a guy who absolutely believed without any doubt that we were holding him captive in our future-Mennonite-like enclave where we insisted on living like it was the early 21st century, and not letting him return to the rest of the 24th century world. If reality is what any fool wishes to believe it is, then why is that guy insane but someone who refuses to accept the genitals they were born with is gloriously enlightened and able to transcend physical reality? If you don't want the delusions cherry picked, then explain all of them.

(And yes, I was working for a mental health facility at the time.)
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Old 06-17-2015, 12:01 PM   #70
Keith Larman
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

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Joe Bramblett wrote: View Post
Ok, no cherry picking then; I once met a guy who absolutely believed without any doubt that we were holding him captive in our future-Mennonite-like enclave where we insisted on living like it was the early 21st century, and not letting him return to the rest of the 24th century world. If reality is what any fool wishes to believe it is, then why is that guy insane but someone who refuses to accept the genitals they were born with is gloriously enlightened and able to transcend physical reality? If you don't want the delusions cherry picked, then explain all of them.

(And yes, I was working for a mental health facility at the time.)
So let me get this straight. You're equating severe paranoid delusional behavior with gender identity issues.

Wow.

You guys can have this conversation. And this entire forum. So please, carry on.

And I sincerely hope these issues never affect any of your family members. For their sake if nothing else.

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Old 06-17-2015, 12:48 PM   #71
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

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Keith Larman wrote: View Post
So let me get this straight. You're equating severe paranoid delusional behavior with gender identity issues.
Refusing to accept the reality of one's genitalia and DNA is hardly different from refusing to accept any other concrete fact.
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Old 06-17-2015, 02:51 PM   #72
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

Quote:
Joe Bramblett wrote: View Post
Refusing to accept the reality of one's genitalia and DNA is hardly different from refusing to accept any other concrete fact.
There are differences in how people deny facts. For example, refusing to admit you have a penis is different from refusing to identify as a man. It's much easier to define a penis than a man, for one thing. Some folks prefer to think in binary terms for gender, some do not. Personally I think it's more fluid than many would like to admit, and we can see examples of some animals who literally shift their gender biologically. You can argue that's apples and oranges (or frogs and people), but I interpret the facts differently and am not afraid of people trying to define themselves how they see fit. So what you call a denial of facts I call a different interpretation of the facts.
So all that said, how do you apply this to a dojo setting? Refuse to allow them to join "because they're the same kind of delusional" as the person you described? That's the implication I take from your remarks so far.
My view is that I am ignorant and whatever my opinions are, I am still ultimately quite ignorant and as such must maintain a degree of judgment suspended, as I do with a lot of other so-called facts I have been presented by all the many self-described authories I encounter. If I see a person who is sincere and cares about the people they're training with, I will do my best to train with them: period.
Side question, since you mention it in a way that seems to suggest an air of authority: what was your function at the mental health facility?

Last edited by mathewjgano : 06-17-2015 at 02:55 PM.

Gambarimashyo!
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Old 06-17-2015, 03:36 PM   #73
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

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Matthew Gano wrote: View Post
You can argue that's apples and oranges (or frogs and people), but I interpret the facts differently and am not afraid of people trying to define themselves how they see fit.
Well, if I ever run into 24th century guy again I'll be sure to send him your way. Same for the one who believes he's the resurrected (not reincarnated, but actually raised from the dead) John of Patmos sent back to clarify his writings. Brilliant classical and blues guitarist, but you'd expect him to know Revelation a bit better - and maybe even speak Greek - under the claimed circumstances.

Quote:
So all that said, how do you apply this to a dojo setting? Refuse to allow them to join "because they're the same kind of delusional" as the person you described?
Neither of those showed any inclination to cause harm, (in fact I kinda wondered about future dude for a while since he was a big guy and certainly could have tried to escape by violence) so unless and until they did, I would welcome them at a dojo. I wouldn't tolerate them demanding some imaginary right to wag their wangs around the girls' locker room though.

Quote:
Side question, since you mention it in a way that seems to suggest an air of authority: what was your function at the mental health facility?
Records and scheduling. I never claimed to diagnose any of them, just chatted with them a lot because the job was so damn boring and part of my office opened onto the waiting room. Probably talked to some of them more than any of the psychologists or the psychiatrist did since some would show up an hour early for a 15-30 minute appointment.
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Old 06-17-2015, 03:46 PM   #74
Janet Rosen
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

Thread devolved into morass appropriate for Open Forums, NOT Aikido.

Janet Rosen
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Old 06-17-2015, 05:50 PM   #75
Erick Mead
 
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Re: Trans Inclusive Aikido

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Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
Credentialism: the refuge of those who would really rather not deal with the facts on the ground.
Rhetoric: the refuge of those with bad facts ?

The fact -- or the denial of the fact -- is precisely the issue. It is the desire to alter a basic fact of human being by way of technological and rhetorical illusion and destruction that is in question -- not the fact itself. The fact just is -- and needs no defense.

Why this is relevant to budo as the spirit of loving protection: Those who ignore facts are apt to get hurt by such willful ignorance -- and I'd much prefer that they not actually be hurt -- more so than I care whether they feel hurt about being denied the comfort of destructive illusions. Nodding bland affirmations in misplaced politeness at self-destructive behavior is not loving protection.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
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