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Old 06-04-2003, 10:55 PM   #26
Jeff Tibbetts
Dojo: Cedar River Aikikai
Location: Cedar Rapids, Iowa
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Rachel, of course I agree that what I saw was not alarming, or even that much harder than what I'm used to. Also, if you go through my posts on the thread you'll see that I really did enjoy that seminar very much. It was a great deal of fun, and it was really interesting and eye-opening to see that range of technique from that perspective. I never once felt that I was in any more danger than I normally am, and I thought everyone was excellent to work with! Please don't misconceive my questioning violence as a bad thing, it's healthy to do that once in a while to know where you stand. That's what I wanted out of this thread, just to explore that side of Aikido, that this seminar made me think about it is a good thing. As far as what in the seminar made me think... What I'm referring to in particular are things like the finishing blows, some of the ways that you can control uke, and some of the types of movements. To be quite specific, I haven't worked with anything that involved any finshing technique from shihonage, and I'm quite used to finishing shihonage as a throw, as well, not straight to the mat with a pin. Also, when doing a shihonage's initial hand grabbing, we usually keep the grab on the wrist, when you grab around the thumb you get extra control but it also makes it very easy to twist that wrist a bit too far, especially if the uke resists. Other things were that kaiten (spelling?) hip movement, while generating a lot of extra power makes it more difficult to not throw the hell out of uke. It just seems like there is a great deal more power, and more control in the technique that I was learning, but at a small cost of comfort and possibly with an added amount of pain (again, not that I thought it felt any more painful, just more possibility.) You know, I didn't even think about some of these things that much untill I was showing a couple things in our class back at my home Dojo, and an uke who is also in EMT training (and everything he does is seen through that medical lens) pointed out some of the options for potential damage in those spots... I can't stress enough that I don't think this is a bad thing, it's another way to do things and it's great that there is so much range and diversity within these techniques. If I had to say which classes that was more obvious with, I'd say that it was McGinnss Sensei's classes, I don't know that I had those impressions with Yamada Sensei; but please forgive me if the whole weekend blurred a bit around the edges, I couldn't say which class was which technique or whatever. I was really very impressed with both sensei, and the whole experience alltogether. My questioning is a part of my nature, not meant to be a criticism. Forgive me if I am sounding too apologetic, but I don't want anyone to get the impression that the seminar was out of control or that I felt endangered, not so at all. These thoughts I'm having are a way for me to explore some things that I really should have been thinking about a long time ago.

If the Nightingale doesn't sing-
wait
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Old 06-05-2003, 06:13 AM   #27
rachmass
Dojo: Aikido of Cincinnati/Huron Valley Aikikai
Location: Somerset Michigan
Join Date: Jul 2002
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Hi Jeff,

thank you for explaining this, and I am sorry again that I haven't read the other posts on this thread. McGinnis Sensei worked on what he called tentai (spelling?) movements where you got a low stance and pivoted from one side to the other moving as much distance as possible (on switching from one side to the other) and showed us how that affected both kotegaeshi and shihonage. His emphasis was on hip movement. The kotegaeshi was hard for me to do, but the shihonage was exactly as I was taught, so that one came naturally. Interestingly enough, I find that it is much more comfortable to be pinned in shihonage than to be projected out. It all depends on your upbringing. The shihonage with pin is a very strong technique if done properly, and you do have to learn how to move your body into it as uke, and not to turn away from nage. In any case, McGinnis Sensei has a yoshinkan background and has extremely strong aikido. I find him a terrific teacher also in that much of what he shows has direct bearing to a smaller nage, and shows how much power you can generate even if you are small in stature. One of these is the thumb grab you talk about in shihonage, that really forces uke to move, even if uke doesn't want to!

Thanks for writing back and reitterating what you had in the thread, as I was lazy (still haven't read the other posts), and had just caught part of your topic. Didn't perceive it as apologetic, just explanatory. Thanks again,

Rachel
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Old 06-05-2003, 09:08 AM   #28
Ron Tisdale
Dojo: Doshinkan dojo in Roxborough, Pa
Location: Phila. Pa
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Hi Jeff,

I think we're talking past each other to a certain extent. We are essentially saying the same thing I believe. We train to gain control...so do you. We may have slightly different ideas about what control is, and how it is gained. But it is that control that gives the ability to have mercy. So when we train at the edge of uke's level to take the control, we are practising NOT going to far each time we do a technique. Just because we move the line to a different place, doesn't mean that we aren't training to not cause unnecessary harm.

Ron

Ron Tisdale
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"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
St. Bonaventure (ca. 1221-1274)
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Old 06-05-2003, 09:12 AM   #29
Ron Tisdale
Dojo: Doshinkan dojo in Roxborough, Pa
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I had the feeling that one of the instructors had a yosh background. Just the descriptions clued me in. Funny that!

RT

Ron Tisdale
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"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
St. Bonaventure (ca. 1221-1274)
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Old 06-05-2003, 10:40 AM   #30
Darren Raleigh
Location: Des Moines, Iowa
Join Date: Apr 2003
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Good question. This is what brought be back to aikido.

The following is from just me - not the Burning Bush, just my aikido:

On the mat, you cannot hurt uke. Ever, ever, ever. Once to take control of a person you are responsible for their safety and have to give them back in at least as good a shape.

In the world, my larger goal is to stop the cycle of violence. Sure, I can hurt people. I've done it. But if I return violence for violence given, it just goes on. Sure, Street-Uke may not hurt me, but if I mess him up he may return with his brothers, or if he can't he'll just pass it along to someone that he can pound on, who will pass it on...but if I take it, control it, and ground it out, it's gone, never to return.

Sure, it's not easy. I know better than many how satisfying it feels to walk away from the body of your would-be oppressor. But that's a short-term solution and ultimately it is self-defeating.

My aikido is not just hyper-efficient fighting. My aikido is the solution to violence. And as Professor Tolkein so eloquently taught, you cannot use the weapons of the enemy.

Non-violence is not weakness - in fact you've got to be much, much stronger to nullify violence than you would to just break the threat to your person or tribe.
I don't know if I'd be able to do that yet, but I will be. Until then, if someone brings me violence and I can't save myself and him, I will be responsible for that, too. So I train.

I'll get off the soapbox now. Thanks.

Last edited by Darren Raleigh : 06-05-2003 at 10:43 AM.

"If he would not be a stick whirled and whelmed in the stream, he must be the stream itself, all of it, from its spring to its sinking in the sea."
- Ogion the Silent
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Old 06-05-2003, 09:40 PM   #31
Jeff Tibbetts
Dojo: Cedar River Aikikai
Location: Cedar Rapids, Iowa
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Hi Ron, yeah I think you're right on this one. We are really desiring the same thing, but I guess I'm just looking for a softer way to get there. I can really see the appeal in a more "direct" approach, you may not have time to get everything just the way you want it, so better to go for control at the very outset and never let it up. I think that many of my questions are answerable only by myself, and I need to see that there's no reason to worry so much about all that. It's no problem to wonder about these things, but I have to keep it to a manageable level. I don't have anywhere near the control or sonfidence to feel that I can affect the outcome of a real confrontation, so for now I need to give myself the tools to get to that level. We talked a bit more about choice in tonight's class, and I think what I'm trying to do with this thread is just get people to wonder about some of these choices that we have. There are many times during techniques where it would be more efficient, more damaging, and maybe more controlling to do certain things, but I'd rather protect uke from those things by choosing a safer way. I feel that my responsibility is to protect both of us, and I know that I can't do that, but that's the goal. I made that choice a long time ago, when someone broke into my house in a drunken stupor and fell asleep on my couch with his pants down when I wasn't home. My wife was home, though, sleeping upstairs. I was well within my rights to do all sorts of nasty things to him, and I think many other people may have done that. I think that the way it looked, it would appear that my wife had been unfaithful, and I know lots of guys who would have lost it at that point. I guess he's lucky that it was me, and I'm lucky he wasn't a serial rapist. The point is, I made a choice before I even started Aikido that I didn't ever want to be responsible for killing or injuring another person, even if everyone else, and the law, justified it. I don't know if that qualifies me as a hippie, I sure don't feel like one. Just as Darren says, it takes a lot more strength to not react with more violence, especially if everyone else tells you that it's right and justified. Idealist? Absolutely. I know that I don't have the skill to back up what I'm saying, maybe I never will, but it keeps me going back to the Dojo. What keeps you going there? I would like to hear from some others...

If the Nightingale doesn't sing-
wait
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Old 06-06-2003, 07:38 AM   #32
Ron Tisdale
Dojo: Doshinkan dojo in Roxborough, Pa
Location: Phila. Pa
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What keeps me going back? Well, my instructor has been talking about how adhearing to a tradition can be grounding in today's world. A world filled with societies in a great deal of flux, in all manner of decay, families disintegrating...

So I go to aikido keiko, and calm down, reconnect. Good enough for me.

Ron

Ron Tisdale
-----------------------
"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
St. Bonaventure (ca. 1221-1274)
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Old 06-13-2003, 03:55 PM   #33
Alan
Dojo: The Universe Within
Location: 1770
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Violence...if we are all GOD then god would give himself love not violence! That is the limit of violence! Swords and knives should not be used even in practice...The limit is now, right now, stop violence now!

All these fighting martial arts should be banned, all violence should be banned, from TV books everything..Banned until it is understood by all.. If we are to evolve into emotionally intelligent beings emanating our true nature of spirit...

I would like to see people evolve so we can move on and LIVE for the first time in harmony together as one. Awaken your inner ki! Awaken GOD!

Peace
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Old 06-13-2003, 04:44 PM   #34
Charles Hill
Dojo: Numazu Aikikai/Aikikai Honbu Dojo
Location: Three Lakes WI/ Mishima Japan
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Alan,

Banned by who? And how?

Charles
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Old 06-13-2003, 07:35 PM   #35
Thalib
 
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Re: What is your limit for violence?

This thread just came into my attention. So... I'm a little bit late and outdated.
Quote:
Jeff Tibbetts wrote:
So the question is this: Where is your line for violence? How far do you take your practice? Are your techniques to cripple, incapacitate, or otherwise damage uke? I obviously don't mean your training partner, but really what would your ideal application of these techniques be in a more real situation.
I practice the way that one suppose to practice in the dojo. I do not want to practice with any hate nor fear nor with any type of negative emotion in mind. Those type of negative "ki" will not create a good training environment. That's what "mokusou" in the beginning of class is for. When I practice Aikido I do Aikido.[list=1]During a seminar, Joe Thambu Sensei mentioned there are 3 types of environments:
[*]Training. One trains like one suppose to train. Uke and nage should help each other in learning, not creating a competitive environment.
[*]Nagare, like in Jiyuu-waza. Still a training environment, but there is no longer any discussion. One learns to set one's mind.
[*]Outside. Anything goes. Do not "try" to apply what you've learn. Do not "try" to think what you should do. Just move, with commitment, with no doubt. Do everything you do with 100% commitment.
[/list=1]
Quote:
Jeff Tibbetts wrote:
Do you practice with the thought of pretecting your family from another person's violence? I just want to hear some honest accounts of why you train at the level you do, and why you think that is.
I train to protect myself in order to be able to protect the ones I love and care for. I don't want to train with any illusions that I'm a "superman". I train because I know that death always lurks behind any corner. I do not train to win nor do I train to defeat, I train to protect.
Quote:
Jeff Tibbetts wrote:
Granted, many of you may not have a choice what style you do, but any style can be cranked up or toned down. I think it's important to ask ourselves these sorts of questions once in a while, to see if we're doing what we want to be doing.
When one is out there faced with mortal danger, and that person fights back in the hope to survive in fear of death, one might as well run away. I am training to be able to accept death as a part of life. Not that I am aiming to have no fear of death, I'll just have to learn to accept it.

When that mortal danger is in front, when one is going to "fight" back, one must do it without any doubts. Not worrying, "Am I going to get out of this alive?". Not worrying a lot of "What if?" One must be commited. Doing it 100%. Not worrying what is in front or what is behind.
Quote:
Jeff Tibbetts wrote:
Sometimes the atmosphere of obedience and the concept of not questioning our teachers bleeds over into the feeling that we're just along for the ride. We need to just reflect on the road that we're on, and see if the destination is a place we want to go...
Actually most of the instructors that I train under do their best to answer the question "Why?". I don't like training with instructors that just says, "Just do as I say! Don't ask so many question.". My main instructor always ask, "Are there any questions?" at the end of every lesson, sometimes even in the middle.
Quote:
Jeff Tibbetts wrote:
Thanks in advance for keeping the thread openminded and informative. Nobody wants another style war.
I accept all styles that the founder trains under O-Sensei as Aikido. To me there is no difference. Probably, except in training methods, but that's all. Even in Aikikai, every shihan trains differently.

When I have to die by the sword, I will do so with honor.
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Old 06-16-2003, 08:17 PM   #36
Phillip Armel
Dojo: Almost Heaven
Location: St Marys West Virginia
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At my dojo we use techniques untill the attacker taps, which works good. I think violence should be recipricated. I wouldn't be against snapping a wrist or elbow if the person was seriously out too hurt me. In training you should take care of your uke, considering that good uke's are in great demand
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Old 06-17-2003, 04:12 PM   #37
drDalek
 
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Quote:
Violence...if we are all GOD then god would give himself love not violence! That is the limit of violence! Swords and knives should not be used even in practice...The limit is now, right now, stop violence now!

All these fighting martial arts should be banned, all violence should be banned, from TV books everything..Banned until it is understood by all.. If we are to evolve into emotionally intelligent beings emanating our true nature of spirit...

I would like to see people evolve so we can move on and LIVE for the first time in harmony together as one. Awaken your inner ki! Awaken GOD!
Banning something means forcefully restricting it and removing it from the menu of free choices people have. Like for example burning books.

To ban something is thus a form of violence. To enforce a ban means placing yourself in a position of dictatorship over other people.

Crazy hippies, when will you ever learn.
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Old 06-18-2003, 12:51 AM   #38
YEME
Dojo: South West Aiki
Location: Margaret River
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awaken god???

is he sleeping?

should i follow that by poking a few sleeping bears and see if they understand the whole non violence scenario?

i don't consider a normal degree of force as violence until it crosses the line to actually hurting your training partner.

i don't like to train 'soft'. Sometimes i get stuck with "i'll tone it down cause she's a girl" which is sweet and very gentlemanly but if i get attacked on the street i won't be extended the same courtesy.

as for the amount of violence I'd use in a real life attack: as much as necessary to stop being hurt.

I don't train to learn how to hurt someone. I train to learn how not to get hurt. Its comforting to know that should someone want to thump me, I'll have a few options.

Life is pleasant. Death is peaceful. It's the transition that's troublesome.
--Isaac Asimov

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Old 06-18-2003, 06:22 PM   #39
Thor's Hammer
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I'd slowly ramp it up. Start lightly taking real care not to injure. Then if they continue to come I will ramp it up. If they have a gun I will give them my money!
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Old 06-18-2003, 08:28 PM   #40
Kyri Honigh
Dojo: Aikido Curacao
Location: Curacao
Join Date: Apr 2003
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Hmmm,as a kid I still don't understand the one guy talking about not even using swords and knives during practise.IMHO the world exists because of violence. in order to live one most overcome opposing forces.The rich will live upon the poor and in the animal world its the same.If you are strong , you will live,if you are weak you die.I do believe that aikido could serve as an impetus for people to reflect upon themselves.They're will always be evil and good people out there, both are different paths leading to different experience.Maybe we will live once in a perfectly harmonious world, but we still got a lot to learn.
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Old 07-10-2003, 09:43 PM   #41
DaveForis
Dojo: UW-L Aikido Club
Location: La Crosse, WI
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Quote:
Darren Raleigh wrote:
Non-violence is not weakness - in fact you've got to be much, much stronger to nullify violence than you would to just break the threat to your person or tribe.

I don't know if I'd be able to do that yet, but I will be. Until then, if someone brings me violence and I can't save myself and him, I will be responsible for that, too. So I train.
Yeah. I think this is the right attitude. I agree with Darren and everyone else who trains both in order to have the option. I figure, if I'm confident that I can refrain from hurting my opponent in my technique, and I'm confident that I CAN hurt them, what's there to worry about? I've got all the angles covered, and thus I have something VERY important: Choice.

When you limit yourself, you limit your choices. When your choices are limited, you're backed to the wall. When a terrified animal is backed into a corner, what does it do? It frenzies, losing all control. I'd rather not be that animal if it ever comes down to the line. Animals can do vicious things that a human being may not be able to live with.

Also, I think Darren hits on a very important point when he mentions that you have to be much stronger than your opponent. It's the difference between being a warrior and a fighter. A warrior trains hard, as hard as he can, to build up his abilities so that he can protect others. A fighter just likes to have enough power to destroy. The warrior has to have the skills to counter the fighter, or else how can he protect anything?

Anyway, I'm not much of a warrior, and tend to be more monkish, but that same theme that's been repeated over and over in this thread is what appeals to me most: Control. The knowledge that I can control the situation helps me to control myself (theoretically. I've a bit more training to do. )

Hey. This is a pretty nice soap box! Who's next?

Behind every flaw in technique is a flaw in the mind or spirit
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