Welcome to AikiWeb Aikido Information
AikiWeb: The Source for Aikido Information
AikiWeb's principal purpose is to serve the Internet community as a repository and dissemination point for aikido information.

Sections
home
aikido articles
columns

Discussions
forums
aikiblogs

Databases
dojo search
seminars
image gallery
supplies
links directory

Reviews
book reviews
video reviews
dvd reviews
equip. reviews

News
submit
archive

Miscellaneous
newsletter
rss feeds
polls
about

Follow us on



Home > AikiWeb Aikido Forums
Go Back   AikiWeb Aikido Forums > General

Hello and thank you for visiting AikiWeb, the world's most active online Aikido community! This site is home to over 22,000 aikido practitioners from around the world and covers a wide range of aikido topics including techniques, philosophy, history, humor, beginner issues, the marketplace, and more.

If you wish to join in the discussions or use the other advanced features available, you will need to register first. Registration is absolutely free and takes only a few minutes to complete so sign up today!

Closed Thread
 
Thread Tools
Old 11-16-2011, 01:03 PM   #426
kewms
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 1,318
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

Quote:
Ken McGrew wrote: View Post
I really don't want to engage with you. This again does not feel like an honest question but rather an attempt to try to make me look wrong.
No, I'm very serious. I honestly do not understand why you think there is a problem here.

Changing the body through training is not a radical idea. Developing a skill to the point where it is automatic is not a radical idea.

But you said that:
Quote:
I spoke to two scientists last night about these issues. The idea that Aiki training is changing the body is testable and almost certainly false.
So what did you ask them, specifically? How did you describe "aiki training" and the "body change" it purports to develop? What tests did they propose?

Since it's already clear that not everyone in this thread shares the same definition of "aiki," it is impossible to comment on your statement without knowing which definition of "aiki" you used.

Katherine
 
Old 11-16-2011, 01:07 PM   #427
kewms
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 1,318
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

Quote:
Ken McGrew wrote: View Post
Here's a suggestion. If you don't want to back up bold claims that cut to the heart of Aikido on an Aikido related forum, then don't make them on the forum, repeatedly.
Good advice.

If you don't want people to challenge your arguments about the nature of aiki in an aikido-related forum, don't make those, either.

Katherine
 
Old 11-16-2011, 01:12 PM   #428
ChrisMoses
Dojo: TNBBC (Icho Ryu Aiki Budo), Shinto Ryu IaiBattojutsu
Location: Seattle, WA
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 927
United_States
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

Quote:
Ken McGrew wrote: View Post
Jeremy, I am responding to Gary, Greg, and Harden and what they describe as body conditioning. Don't draw me into this. You'll need to ask them to clarify, not I. They are clearly describing something biological.
Dan doesn't need to justify this. Jeremy and I have both felt him and know the truth. When I met Ark almost six years ago one of the things that most stood out as something worth exploring is that his body felt and moved differently. IHTBF. I've since had people with decades of training in aikido, some with decades more than the decades I've got FREAK OUT at the way I feel and can move now (and to be clear, I'm no Ark and I'm no Dan. I'm not making that claim).

Quote:
Ken McGrew wrote: View Post
So no, training doesn't change the body in the way they seem to be suggesting. Different types of physical activity shape existing tissues Etc. in particular ways within the limits of their genetic potential. But they don't make them into something new. They argue for an automatic process by which the body does the work for you and it takes no effort.
Um, actually it takes a great deal of effort to get there, but then yes, the body does indeed feel to be able to respond to pressures and input in a nearly unconscious way. I can't do it justice to describe it and I don't think you'd get it anyway. You have too much baggage and again, IHTBF.

Quote:
Ken McGrew wrote: View Post
I am certain that O Sensei would not have agreed with him, though Harden may be right, he can't find the support in O Sensei that he thinks he finds for the reasons I have gone over repeatedly.
I really don't think he cares if you or O Sensei would have agreed with him. *I* don't care at all if you believe me.

Quote:
Ken McGrew wrote: View Post
But it is not magic.
No one is saying it's magic. It's real, it's hard, it takes a lot of brain power and personal effort. It's not magical at all. BUT the receiving end can feel very nearly magical it's so far outside of what most people have been exposed to. Again, that first time I met Ark and he asked me to push on him, and I'm absolutely heaving on him square on his shoulders and he's standing relaxed in shizen-tai, and everything I've done before is telling me that what I'm doing should be breaking his balance if not knocking him over backwards and *NOTHING* is happening to him. It felt like his swanky tracksuit was filled with granite in the shape of a human. Then suddenly it just felt empty like a tracksuit filled with air.

Quote:
Ken McGrew wrote: View Post
I believe they mistake subtle blending Etc. for what they describe as body conditioning.
You could not meet Ark or Dan and possibly make that statement. It's body conditioning. It changes the way the body *works*. You are sounding like a fool man, quit presuming you understand what these guys are teaching and doing. I've watched your videos, I can see that you're not doing this stuff. I have felt Saotome, Ikeda, Takeda Yoshinobu and MANY other senior aikido guys n gals and this is something different. I've written about this in the past, look for my 'book report' on "The Spirit of Aikido".

Quote:
Ken McGrew wrote: View Post
Even if they can do it well. It's not really automatic in the way they mean. The body may do things for you out of habit. But that's not the same conception of automatic that they seem to describe.
You are reading meaning into their posts because you have no frame of reference for what they're talking about.

I will say (since we have such a lovely audience) that I do agree with one thing you're saying, and that's that I do believe that when we (and this is a very loose "we" here) are talking about AIKI, we are not using the word the same as aiKIdo uses the term (which I write as aiKI for clarity). One of the reasons I think this is/was so controversial is that the concept of AIKI that we're all working towards is not an aspect of aiKIdo. I'm sure many of you will disagree with me on that one, but that's my belief. I'm not saying you can't do aiKIdo with AIKI (I think it works better), or that OSensei didn't use AIKI (I'm convinced he did). But I think his followers leveraged their understanding of timing and kuzushi (from their judo backgrounds) to approximate what they saw and felt OSensei doing. I do not think they were using AIKI the way Daito ryu or Yanagi ryu use the term. I firmly believe it's the missing piece of the puzzle. Has anyone for example ever seen ANYONE do the jo trick besides OSensei? C'mon, that was awesome, if aiKIdo is working the same AIKI as he was, why can't anyone do this? Answer: no AIKI in aiKIdo. Again, those are my opinions, please don't attribute them to anyone but me.

Chris Moses
TNBBC, "Putting the ME in MEdiocre!"
Budo Tanren at Seattle School of Aikido
Shinto Ryu Iai-Battojutsu
 
Old 11-16-2011, 01:15 PM   #429
kewms
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 1,318
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

Let's suppose, for the sake of argument, that John claimed to be able to swim. Let's even suppose that he claimed to have developed a new, more efficient version of the breast stroke, which allowed him to put up much faster times.

Then along comes Jane, and she says "John said that he can walk on water. That's ridiculous. He may be a good swimmer, but no one can walk on water. And even if he could, that's walking, not swimming."

And then off we go for 18 pages, with one side pointing out that John never claimed to be able to walk on water, all he wants to talk about is his breast stroke, and the other continuing to attack the waterwalking claim and the redefinition of what swimming even is.

*sigh*

Katherine
 
Old 11-16-2011, 01:55 PM   #430
Chris Knight
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 138
England
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

Ken. If you did a bit of research this type of body conditioning has been scientifically proven to alter the body biologically from molecular reactions to unused muscle usage to connecting the body correctly to increasing bone marrow density. Why make comments like this when the scientists are unequivically wrong? ?
 
Old 11-16-2011, 03:28 PM   #431
wxyzabc
Location: Japan
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 155
England
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

Ken..

Imho you're basic intentions are good..you've come on here to defend the status and teachings of Saotome sensei...(unfortunately being English I've never met him..but then, neither have I met the other people on this forum so am not a particular "supporter" of anyone here).

That said, you've come in with ego my friend...along the lines of I teach people to do this for a living ..I will demonstrate my debating prowess etc .....a semi legal attitude of ignoring key evidence ...deflecting and misquoting...

Sadly.. thinking that volume and noise equals quality is not the way to go.

You have clearly demonstrated to everyone the limitations of your understanding to date..I would leave it at that. Either quietly seek more information with respect to other people...try to understand the picture Saotome sensei showed you or be happy with what you have. So you're a new 3rd dan with say 25 years practise time?..so you're basic aikido/waza should be pretty good...

All the best

Lee

Last edited by wxyzabc : 11-16-2011 at 03:30 PM.
 
Old 11-16-2011, 03:37 PM   #432
Matt Fisher
Dojo: Allegheny Aikido
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 33
United_States
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

Quote:
Ken McGrew wrote: View Post
I spoke to two scientists last night about these issues. The idea that Aiki training is changing the body is testable and almost certainly false. Changing the neural pathways maybe. We learn to use the body differently. We don't change the function of the body parts. Even though it may feel like you do at higher levels.
Quote:
Chris Knight wrote: View Post
Ken. If you did a bit of research this type of body conditioning has been scientifically proven to alter the body biologically from molecular reactions to unused muscle usage to connecting the body correctly to increasing bone marrow density. Why make comments like this when the scientists are unequivically wrong? ?
Up to this point I have been very reluctant to get involved in the exchange between Ken and others on this list...but the above two statements compel me to respond. FWIW, I'm a Ph.D. biochemist (University of Wisconsin-Madison), a chemistry professor of 20 years and an aikidoka of almost 30 years.

Aiki training changing the body is only testable if the changes are ones that we have ways of measuring now. And changes that involve interactions between different types of tissues are much more difficult to test that changes inside a single type of tissue. As for Ken's comment that this idea (Aiki training changing the body) is almost certainly false...sorry, but stating your conclusion BEFORE doing the experimental work is bad science. Period. You may have a thought, a suspicion, a hunch, a hypothesis...but any chemistry student of mine who presented a claim to me in the language Ken used would find out very quickly that I have no tolerance for making conclusions in advance of the experimental work.

(think of it as the verbal equivalent of hitting them in the head with a shinai...)

As for Chris's comment that "the scientists are unequivocally wrong"...I'm not sure which scientists he is referring to. Without specific references from the peer reviewed literature, I'm not in a position to evaluate how much has actually been proven vs. suggested or implied. And time constraints don't allow me to do the necessary research on PubMed... But "proof" in the scientific community really requires reproducibility and independent verification. So if the research that Chris refers to is a single paper, that certainly suggests something...but I'm reluctant to say that a single paper constitutes "proof."

Matt Fisher
Allegheny Aikido
Pittsburgh, PA
 
Old 11-16-2011, 03:50 PM   #433
Chris Knight
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 138
England
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

The scientists who ken spoke who refuted the idea straight away according to his post. Internal training has been proven to increase bone marrow in just one example and is used throughout hospitals in the east. ..Not just conducted in a lab but in medical useage
 
Old 11-16-2011, 03:58 PM   #434
Demetrio Cereijo
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 2,247
Spain
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

Matt

IS is outside of the realms of western science.

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=19317
 
Old 11-16-2011, 04:11 PM   #435
Matt Fisher
Dojo: Allegheny Aikido
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 33
United_States
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

Quote:
Demetrio Cereijo wrote: View Post
Matt

IS is outside of the realms of western science.

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=19317
Hmm...I'm a little skeptical of categorical statements like that. That's not to say that there is nothing outside of realms of western science (that is a philosophical position that I don't agree with), but I have yet to encounter any compelling evidence that IS is inherently and clearly outside the realm of any type of scientific investigation. Unless we're going to describe it as something completely spiritual...but my impression from reading a number of posts on Aikiweb is that the advocates of IS are not claiming that.

Matt
 
Old 11-16-2011, 04:37 PM   #436
Ken McGrew
Dojo: Aikido at UAB
Location: Birmingham, Alabama
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 202
United_States
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

Once again we have people making statements directed at me on a personal level. We have people continuing to draw me into a situation that they say makes me look bad. So I assume that means that they like trying to hurt me, or see me hurt myself. Not that I agree. But that is what they say. When will you stop with the personal stuff? You are welcome to ignore me.

It is impossible to engage with the multi frontal Harden attacks. People speak as if they are representing, but if I respond to one of them, then the clamor comes that that one person can't speak for Harden Etc. Don't ask me to infer and then complain when I don't infer to your liking.

A variety of people have spoken up about the importance of what they say they are training with Harden. And yet they have said, or strongly implied, contradictory things. It's impossible to follow.

These folks argue (in general) that A) O Sensei was doing the same Aiki that they are doing, B) they know this because of translations they've made of O Sensei's writings, and C) alternative say the can't or won't describe what they are doing. If O Sensei could put it in words then they can.

Many of Harden's followers keep going back to you have to feel it to believe it. That's fine. But why pronounce this in a forum? If the point isn't to debate or inform, then what is the reason to post? I will say this one more time. No matter how good Harden is it does not prove that he is good for the reasons that he thinks. O Sensei believed his astral body left this plane for the bridge between heaven and earth while he was doing Aikido. I don't believe that. Being thrown by O Sensei would not convince me that the source of his power was what he thought it was. But I'd be impressed none the less.

We can't begin to test the biological impact of IS training without a definition of what IS training is. We don't need to conduct tests to know before hand that nothing in IS will allow people to change beyond their genetic limits. In science people make baseline assumptions given a range of things that are already known. In order to transform the genetic boundaries IS would have to change the genes. That's very testable.

Various followers of Harden have argued things that imply, as Matt just acknowledged, that it's all in the body. Now we have people who follow Harden implying that it is something else, what I don't know, maybe something mystical. Like I said, even the advocates of Harden's IS can't seem to agree on what it is.

We don't have to agree on what it is or where it comes from in order to have a conversation about how it's done. We could find a video to look at and see what's visible there. To the extent that it's not visible we could put into words how it was done and what it felt like. We could compare what Harden followers experienced with common experiences that we have between us to compare and contrast. It is simply not impossible to communicate with words. Some things can't be directly conveyed, like emotions to an alien who doesn't share them, but they can still be described and comprehended. Think of Data. But there is a lack of will to do so for some reason among the advocates of Harden's whatever it is. That's fine. But I can't begin to understand, then, why they spend so much time on forums.

Last edited by Ken McGrew : 11-16-2011 at 04:48 PM.
 
Old 11-16-2011, 04:54 PM   #437
Gerardo Torres
Location: SF Bay Area
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 197
United_States
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

Quote:
Ken McGrew wrote: View Post
O Sensei believed his astral body left this plane for the bridge between heaven and earth while he was doing Aikido. I don't believe that.
I do!

Quote:
Being thrown by O Sensei would not convince me that the source of his power was what he thought it was.
It's OK, history has shown that few if any listened to him anyway.
 
Old 11-16-2011, 05:01 PM   #438
gregstec
Dojo: Aiki Kurabu
Location: Elizabethtown, PA
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 1,110
United_States
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

Quote:
Matt Fisher wrote: View Post
Hmm...I'm a little skeptical of categorical statements like that. That's not to say that there is nothing outside of realms of western science (that is a philosophical position that I don't agree with), but I have yet to encounter any compelling evidence that IS is inherently and clearly outside the realm of any type of scientific investigation. Unless we're going to describe it as something completely spiritual...but my impression from reading a number of posts on Aikiweb is that the advocates of IS are not claiming that.

Matt
My impression as well - however, the true validity of your statement would obviously depend on an accepted definition of spiritual

IMO, I view spiritual as that which is not physical - I am under the impression that most western cultures have a singular view of spirituality that is predominantly religious in nature. My view is that religious beliefs reside in the domain of spirituality as does other nonreligious ethereal entities; such as mind.

Core to IS training is the coordination of mind and body and that is where I believe ki comes into play as the bridge between mind and body - to me, ki has both a mental intent quality as well as a physical quality that enables and controls manifestation of physical power.

Just some of my thoughts on the subject - thanks for jumping in with your comments, very refreshing.

Greg
 
Old 11-16-2011, 05:03 PM   #439
Carl Thompson
 
Carl Thompson's Avatar
Location: Kasama
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 491
Japan
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

Quote:
Ken McGrew wrote: View Post
I spoke to two scientists last night about these issues. The idea that Aiki training is changing the body is testable and almost certainly false. Changing the neural pathways maybe. We learn to use the body differently. We don't change the function of the body parts. Even though it may feel like you do at higher levels.
Those scientists should be familiar with Wolff's Law.

Regards

Carl
 
Old 11-16-2011, 05:19 PM   #440
kewms
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 1,318
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

Quote:
Ken McGrew wrote: View Post
We can't begin to test the biological impact of IS training without a definition of what IS training is. We don't need to conduct tests to know before hand that nothing in IS will allow people to change beyond their genetic limits. In science people make baseline assumptions given a range of things that are already known. In order to transform the genetic boundaries IS would have to change the genes. That's very testable.
Since only a handful of elite athletes ever approach their genetic limits, invoking them in this discussion is something of a red herring.

In any case, you were the one who brought science into the conversation, declaring that scientists you had consulted said that aiki training probably doesn't have the claimed effects. So what definition of aiki training did *you* use? How did you even come up with a description, when you have repeatedly complained that IS supporters refuse to say what they're doing?

Yes, sure, if I went to a random biochemist and asked if X form of training could change someone's genetic limits he would say probably not. That's like asking an astrophysicist if the sun will rise tomorrow. But no one is claiming that IS can do that, so what's the point of the question?

Katherine

Last edited by kewms : 11-16-2011 at 05:21 PM.
 
Old 11-16-2011, 05:24 PM   #441
Ken McGrew
Dojo: Aikido at UAB
Location: Birmingham, Alabama
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 202
United_States
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

I was tempted to ignore this post for the personal comments found within it.

Ignoring those you have at least contributed to the conversations something observable in the physical world that can be discussed.

The sort of grounded can't be pushed posture you describe is something we can all visualize whether we agree on how it's done or not. I've trained with Tae Chi people, not in Tae Chi, but I can imagine this sort of grounding. I know you say it's not grounding. They described it as grounding. I know you might say they had not been taught the secret... Again, we don't have to agree on how it's done, at least initially, to discuss what it looks like Etc. The feeling empty or drained comment, you might describe in greater detail and what you think was going on. Did his body drain your Ki? Did he send impulses into your nervous system? Or did you mean those words more metaphorically.

The question is how this relates to the claims that are made. Harden et al describe this as Aiki. They say Aiki is the secret of Aikido that was on display in O Sensei. They call it the engine of Aikido and all that other stuff. They DO claim to care that O Sensei allegedly said he was doing what they are doing.

Now, more importantly, and related to these claims -which is all I care about not whether you enjoy what Harden teaches- how does this skill translate into Aikido responses to attacks? It would be very easy to describe this in words, not agreeing necessarily on how it works, but what it looks like. It starts to sound like Harden can absorb the power of a kick or punch to the face without moving. I doubt that is the claim. Is the claim that he moves off line, touches Uke, and Uke falls to the ground as if he had lost the ability to stand? If not, what?

I can certainly point to places in O Sensei where this grounding (as I call it) was applied in technique. By grounding I mean like what he showed with the jo trick. I can also point to places where it wasn't. So what makes this one skill the secret of Aiki in Aikido? I don't think that this is your claim. But it is Harden's claim.

Quote:
Christian Moses wrote: View Post
Dan doesn't need to justify this. Jeremy and I have both felt him and know the truth. When I met Ark almost six years ago one of the things that most stood out as something worth exploring is that his body felt and moved differently. IHTBF. I've since had people with decades of training in aikido, some with decades more than the decades I've got FREAK OUT at the way I feel and can move now (and to be clear, I'm no Ark and I'm no Dan. I'm not making that claim).

Um, actually it takes a great deal of effort to get there, but then yes, the body does indeed feel to be able to respond to pressures and input in a nearly unconscious way. I can't do it justice to describe it and I don't think you'd get it anyway. You have too much baggage and again, IHTBF.

I really don't think he cares if you or O Sensei would have agreed with him. *I* don't care at all if you believe me.

No one is saying it's magic. It's real, it's hard, it takes a lot of brain power and personal effort. It's not magical at all. BUT the receiving end can feel very nearly magical it's so far outside of what most people have been exposed to. Again, that first time I met Ark and he asked me to push on him, and I'm absolutely heaving on him square on his shoulders and he's standing relaxed in shizen-tai, and everything I've done before is telling me that what I'm doing should be breaking his balance if not knocking him over backwards and *NOTHING* is happening to him. It felt like his swanky tracksuit was filled with granite in the shape of a human. Then suddenly it just felt empty like a tracksuit filled with air.

You could not meet Ark or Dan and possibly make that statement. It's body conditioning. It changes the way the body *works*. You are sounding like a fool man, quit presuming you understand what these guys are teaching and doing. I've watched your videos, I can see that you're not doing this stuff. I have felt Saotome, Ikeda, Takeda Yoshinobu and MANY other senior aikido guys n gals and this is something different. I've written about this in the past, look for my 'book report' on "The Spirit of Aikido".

You are reading meaning into their posts because you have no frame of reference for what they're talking about.

I will say (since we have such a lovely audience) that I do agree with one thing you're saying, and that's that I do believe that when we (and this is a very loose "we" here) are talking about AIKI, we are not using the word the same as aiKIdo uses the term (which I write as aiKI for clarity). One of the reasons I think this is/was so controversial is that the concept of AIKI that we're all working towards is not an aspect of aiKIdo. I'm sure many of you will disagree with me on that one, but that's my belief. I'm not saying you can't do aiKIdo with AIKI (I think it works better), or that OSensei didn't use AIKI (I'm convinced he did). But I think his followers leveraged their understanding of timing and kuzushi (from their judo backgrounds) to approximate what they saw and felt OSensei doing. I do not think they were using AIKI the way Daito ryu or Yanagi ryu use the term. I firmly believe it's the missing piece of the puzzle. Has anyone for example ever seen ANYONE do the jo trick besides OSensei? C'mon, that was awesome, if aiKIdo is working the same AIKI as he was, why can't anyone do this? Answer: no AIKI in aiKIdo. Again, those are my opinions, please don't attribute them to anyone but me.

Last edited by Ken McGrew : 11-16-2011 at 05:34 PM.
 
Old 11-16-2011, 05:25 PM   #442
Ken McGrew
Dojo: Aikido at UAB
Location: Birmingham, Alabama
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 202
United_States
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

Quote:
Katherine Derbyshire wrote: View Post
Since only a handful of elite athletes ever approach their genetic limits, invoking them in this discussion is something of a red herring.

In any case, you were the one who brought science into the conversation, declaring that scientists you had consulted said that aiki training probably doesn't have the claimed effects. So what definition of aiki training did *you* use? How did you even come up with a description, when you have repeatedly complained that IS supporters refuse to say what they're doing?

Yes, sure, if I went to a random biochemist and asked if X form of training could change someone's genetic limits he would say probably not. That's like asking an astrophysicist if the sun will rise tomorrow. But no one is claiming that IS can do that, so what's the point of the question?

Katherine
That's not what I said exactly word for word, Katherine. Retract it.
 
Old 11-16-2011, 05:35 PM   #443
HL1978
Dojo: Aunkai
Location: Fairfax, VA
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 429
United_States
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

Quote:
Ken McGrew wrote: View Post
Jeremy, I am responding to Gary, Greg, and Harden and what they describe as body conditioning. Don't draw me into this. You'll need to ask them to clarify, not I. They are clearly describing something biological.

So no, training doesn't change the body in the way they seem to be suggesting. Different types of physical activity shape existing tissues Etc. in particular ways within the limits of their genetic potential. But they don't make them into something new. They argue for an automatic process by which the body does the work for you and it takes no effort.

I have never said that Harden can't do whatever it is he does. I am saying that I'm skeptical that it works for the reasons that he thinks it does. I am certain that O Sensei would not have agreed with him, though Harden may be right, he can't find the support in O Sensei that he thinks he finds for the reasons I have gone over repeatedly. I just don't see the evidence to support the claims that he makes outweighing the mountain of counter evidence. Also, my own eyes. Internal unbalancing can be amazing. But it is not magic. I believe they mistake subtle blending Etc. for what they describe as body conditioning. Even if they can do it well. It's not really automatic in the way they mean. The body may do things for you out of habit. But that's not the same conception of automatic that they seem to describe.
As I spoke of earlier with regards to integrating objects/people into you, that is certainly a mental process. On the otherhand, it would be strange to state that the results of breathwork (kokyu) do not result in physical changes, nor would it be correct to say that development of a strong tanden doesn't lead to different type of muscular development by working a muscle group not normally used. One need only spend some time with people who have spent considable time doing both and see a different body, namely they can move a ball of muscle around in the lower abdomen, or in the case of koyku type conditioning, they can "tense"/flatten the skin in a way that does not look like muscle. The idea of the koyku type development is to use that tension to move the limbs.

Of course, people pursuing these skills tend to have pretty massive legs/hip development as well.

Some discussion/research has been preformed into the whole koyku development, you can poke around on the fascia congress website for various papers, but I can't state that development of the fascia is what is going on.

Now the thing is if your body is built/functioning in such a manner, the idea of blending takes on a new dimension from the one typically understood. Now none of what I said is new, anyone following these threads in the past few years would be familiar with the assertions above (or have seen various seminar givers demonstrate the above characteristics).
 
Old 11-16-2011, 05:36 PM   #444
DH
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 3,394
United_States
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

It is largely a different and counter intuitive way to use the body, that creates different effects when someone touches you. Most notably creating Kuzushi on contact.
Other aspects are that the fascial chain gets more developed and the dantian grows and affects the limbs in substantial ways. I had a rolfer work on me and tell me I was weirdest feeling person she ever worked on. She said my fascia felt like leather but it was smooth and fluid and not sticking as she would normally suspect with that much force needed to work me. She was on the table and giving all she had and the fascial chains were stretching well, just thicker than she had ever experienced. Most people have never had a person stand in front of them and rotate the dantian. Which many will tell you is a weird first time experience.
Then of course while being a non martial display, it is odd to see someone launch themselves in seiza from dantian, or launch themselves vertically in the air with locked knees ...from dantian.

These things, and other like them have been noted in the Martial arts from India to China to Japan.
Most educated budo people already know this, but every generation you have to suffer the newbies and the "athletes" and even the AMA, who keeps having to back paddle on what they were certain they knew...till they didn't.
Dan
 
Old 11-16-2011, 05:37 PM   #445
kewms
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 1,318
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

Quote:
Ken McGrew wrote: View Post
That's not what I said exactly word for word, Katherine. Retract it.
You said, word for word:

Quote:
I spoke to two scientists last night about these issues. The idea that Aiki training is changing the body is testable and almost certainly false.
The question stands. What, exactly, did you ask them? I don't want to speculate, but have no choice without further detail.

Katherine

Last edited by kewms : 11-16-2011 at 05:40 PM.
 
Old 11-16-2011, 05:42 PM   #446
Ken McGrew
Dojo: Aikido at UAB
Location: Birmingham, Alabama
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 202
United_States
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

Quote:
Hunter Lonsberry wrote: View Post
Now the thing is if your body is built/functioning in such a manner, the idea of blending takes on a new dimension from the one typically understood. Now none of what I said is new, anyone following these threads in the past few years would be familiar with the assertions above (or have seen various seminar givers demonstrate the above characteristics).
By this you mean IS training?

And that the blending takes on a new meaning (and some people DID say it is not about blending, timing, leading, Etc. - but let's leave that aside for now), do you see this "new meaning" expressed in O Sensei and if so where? Can you describe the new meaning that this blending takes on in the form of a defense against an attack?

If the argument were merely that Harden Etc. have added a new skill for Aikido we wouldn't be having this conversation. They make lots of bold and well known claims.
 
Old 11-16-2011, 05:59 PM   #447
Fred Little
Dojo: NJIT Budokai
Location: State Line NJ/NY
Join Date: Apr 2001
Posts: 632
United_States
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

Quote:
Ken McGrew wrote: View Post
Once again we have people making statements directed at me on a personal level. We have people continuing to draw me into a situation that they say makes me look bad. So I assume that means that they like trying to hurt me, or see me hurt myself. Not that I agree. But that is what they say. When will you stop with the personal stuff? You are welcome to ignore me.

It is impossible to engage with the multi frontal Harden attacks. People speak as if they are representing, but if I respond to one of them, then the clamor comes that that one person can't speak for Harden Etc. Don't ask me to infer and then complain when I don't infer to your liking.

A variety of people have spoken up about the importance of what they say they are training with Harden. And yet they have said, or strongly implied, contradictory things. It's impossible to follow.

These folks argue (in general) that A) O Sensei was doing the same Aiki that they are doing, B) they know this because of translations they've made of O Sensei's writings, and C) alternative say the can't or won't describe what they are doing. If O Sensei could put it in words then they can.

Many of Harden's followers keep going back to you have to feel it to believe it. That's fine. But why pronounce this in a forum? If the point isn't to debate or inform, then what is the reason to post? I will say this one more time. No matter how good Harden is it does not prove that he is good for the reasons that he thinks. O Sensei believed his astral body left this plane for the bridge between heaven and earth while he was doing Aikido. I don't believe that. Being thrown by O Sensei would not convince me that the source of his power was what he thought it was. But I'd be impressed none the less.

We can't begin to test the biological impact of IS training without a definition of what IS training is. We don't need to conduct tests to know before hand that nothing in IS will allow people to change beyond their genetic limits. In science people make baseline assumptions given a range of things that are already known. In order to transform the genetic boundaries IS would have to change the genes. That's very testable.

Various followers of Harden have argued things that imply, as Matt just acknowledged, that it's all in the body. Now we have people who follow Harden implying that it is something else, what I don't know, maybe something mystical. Like I said, even the advocates of Harden's IS can't seem to agree on what it is.

We don't have to agree on what it is or where it comes from in order to have a conversation about how it's done. We could find a video to look at and see what's visible there. To the extent that it's not visible we could put into words how it was done and what it felt like. We could compare what Harden followers experienced with common experiences that we have between us to compare and contrast. It is simply not impossible to communicate with words. Some things can't be directly conveyed, like emotions to an alien who doesn't share them, but they can still be described and comprehended. Think of Data. But there is a lack of will to do so for some reason among the advocates of Harden's whatever it is. That's fine. But I can't begin to understand, then, why they spend so much time on forums.
1. I do not speak for Dan Harden

2. I am not an advocate of Harden's IS.

3. I have never attended a class with Dan Harden.

4.. I argued that Dan Harden doesn't write well or clearly years before you did.

5. The set of people who think they write well is much larger than the set of people who actually write well.

8. The set of people who think they think well is much larger than the set of people who actually think well.

9 . It is possible for some people to write very well and very clearly without thinking at all (for example, Christopher Hitchens on a bad day).
(corollary to 9, it is possible for some people to think very clearly without writing at all well)

10. One can both write well and think well without moving well.

11. One can move well without either writing well or thinking well, much less being able to describe in spoken or written form the state of a trained body that moves appropriately without thinking.

12. Not all information transfer occurs through either writing or (rational) thinking. Some individuals excel in direct, hands-on transfer of knowledge that is not susceptible to written explanation.

13. It has been observed that the reasons students go to classes and training events in educational systems of all kinds are varied. Possible reasons include learning, fulfillment of attendance requirements for advancement, social interaction (freely chosen), and social interaction (coerced as a condition of group membership). This is not an exhaustive list.

14. Virtually none of the individuals noted as teaching IS skills teach systems in which there is a structured system of advancement, nor is there a structure of group membership. This reduces the possible reasons for attendance from the select list above to learning and social interaction.

15. Almost all attendees at such events report extreme physical and mental exhaustion. Sometimes, there are also reports of beer and/or fishing, but only after extreme physical and mental exhaustion. It is quite possible to buy beer and go fishing without engaging in preliminary activities which lead to physical and mental exhaustion.

16. One is virtually forced to conclude that attendees believe that learning is occurring.

17. You are arguing that attendees are not adequately explaining or justifying to you the learning that they believe is occurring.

18. This is not an argument that learning is not occurring, this is a boring repetition of something everyone knows: (see item 4).

19. Many people arguing with you are asserting that they have a wide range of experience with various instructors of aikido at every level, have gone through a series of arguments with others (and or themselves) much like the list above and concluded that as long as they get item 12, they don't give a rodent's backside about any other item on the list.

20. I'm going to stop here and go do something more productive like ask a fish how it swims (when Howard is in town).

FL

Last edited by Fred Little : 11-16-2011 at 06:09 PM.

 
Old 11-16-2011, 06:12 PM   #448
Ken McGrew
Dojo: Aikido at UAB
Location: Birmingham, Alabama
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 202
United_States
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

1. I'll call people who do IS similar to what Harden does whatever they prefer to be called.

2. If it can't be discussed why are we discussing it? Why post about "it."

3. I don't mind if people are benefiting or whatever from the training you are describing.

4. I am not arguing that people aren't learning.

5. I'm questioning the bold claims that what they are learning is the Aiki of Aikido that was lost after O Sensei.

6. I'm questioning therefore whether "real Aikido" (as some have certainly implied or stated) only occurs when it is the Aiki they do in IS.

7. I'm asking if the IS replaces the things that we think of as how Aikido works and exactly how the IS is incorporated into the Aikido in waza.

8. I'm asking (as some have certainly implied or stated) if it is their claim that Aikido doesn't "work" against real attacks unless it contains their IS skills?

Quote:
Fred Little wrote: View Post
1. I do not speak for Dan Harden

2. I am not an advocate of Harden's IS.

3. I have never attended a class with Dan Harden.

4.. I argued that Dan Harden doesn't write well or clearly years before you did.

5. The set of people who think they write well is much larger than the set of people who actually write well.

8. The set of people who think they think well is much larger than the set of people who actually think well.

9 . It is possible for some people to write very well and very clearly without thinking at all (for example, Christopher Hitchens on a bad day).

10. One can both write well and think well without moving well.

11. One can move well without either writing well or thinking well, much less being able to describe in spoken or written form the state of a trained body that moves appropriately without thinking.

12. Not all information transfer occurs through either writing or (rational) thinking. Some individuals excel in direct, hands-on transfer of knowledge that is not susceptible to written explanation.

13. It has been observed that the reasons students go to classes and training events in educational systems of all kinds are varied. Possible reasons include learning, fulfillment of attendance requirements for advancement, social interaction (freely chosen), and social interaction (coerced as a condition of group membership). This is not an exhaustive list.

14. Virtually none of the individuals noted as teaching IS skills teach systems in which there is a structured system of advancement, nor is there a structure of group membership. This reduces the possible reasons for attendance from the select list above to learning and social interaction.

15. Almost all attendees at such events report extreme physical and mental exhaustion. Sometimes, there are also reports of beer and/or fishing, but only after extreme physical and mental exhaustion. It is quite possible to buy beer and go fishing without engaging in preliminary activities which lead to physical and mental exhaustion.

16. One is virtually forced to conclude that attendees believe that learning is occurring.

17. You are arguing that attendees are not adequately explaining or justifying to you the learning that they believe is occurring.

18. This is not an argument that learning is not occurring, this is a boring repetition of something everyone knows: (see item 4).

19. Many people arguing with you are asserting that they have a wide range of experience with various instructors of aikido at every level, have gone through a series of arguments with others (and or themselves) much like the list above and concluded that as long as they get item 12, they don't give a rodent's backside about any other item on the list.

20. I'm going to stop here and go do something more productive like ask a fish how it swims (when Howard is in town).

FL
 
Old 11-16-2011, 06:31 PM   #449
Fred Little
Dojo: NJIT Budokai
Location: State Line NJ/NY
Join Date: Apr 2001
Posts: 632
United_States
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

Answers [i]in bold italics,[/I] because I'm lazy that way.

Quote:
Ken McGrew wrote: View Post
1. I'll call people who do IS similar to what Harden does whatever they prefer to be called.

Please ask Saotome Sensei, directly, if his aikido is similar to Yamada Sensei's aikido, and then tell him that you will call it whatever he prefers it be called. Please let us all know how that goes.

2. If it can't be discussed why are we discussing it? Why post about "it."

Some people just can't help themselves.

3. I don't mind if people are benefiting or whatever from the training you are describing.

Why, that's right white of you!

4. I am not arguing that people aren't learning.

But you are insisting that they describe their learning in terms accessible to you. They are insisting (on the basis of having personally gone through a multi-phase process of skeptical argumentation) that you are wasting your time and the answer you are seeking regarding what they are learning is best accessed through direct contact.

5. I'm questioning the bold claims that what they are learning is the Aiki of Aikido that was lost after O Sensei.

Which questioning seems to be rooted less in an open and even-handed examination of all evidence -- both direct and indirect, extant and possible -- than in a privileged status for hagiographic treatments of the founder, full acceptance of statements made by his direct students as honest, accurate, and relevant (and this last is important, for something can be entirely honest and accurate without being in the least relevant), and a view of his art as having reached some ideal stage of completeness. Of course, historically speaking, such a stage is usually a temporary phenomenon that can only be followed by degeneration.

6. I'm questioning therefore whether "real Aikido" (as some have certainly implied or stated) only occurs when it is the Aiki they do in IS.

They're asking whether "really good Aikido" occurs without it. There's a difference between thinking of points on a continuum and points in binary opposition.

7. I'm asking if the IS replaces the things that we think of as how Aikido works and exactly how the IS is incorporated into the Aikido in waza.

What you mean we, kemo-sabe?

8. I'm asking (as some have certainly implied or stated) if it is their claim that Aikido doesn't "work" against real attacks unless it contains their IS skills?

See Ellis' remark about Terry and the chain saw several miles back. Not that anybody speaks for everybody, but nobody disagreed with him on that point.

Last edited by Fred Little : 11-16-2011 at 06:33 PM.

 
Old 11-16-2011, 07:42 PM   #450
phitruong
Dojo: Charlotte Aikikai Agatsu Dojo
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 1,942
United_States
Offline
Re: Ueshiba's Aiki

Quote:
Fred Little wrote: View Post
Please ask Saotome Sensei, directly, if his aikido is similar to Yamada Sensei's aikido, and then tell him that you will call it whatever he prefers it be called. Please let us all know how that goes.
Fred, that's just cruel! i know ken is annoying, but he doesn't deserve that.

"budo is putting on cold, wet, sweat stained gi with a smile and a snarl" - your truly
http://charlotteaikikai.org
 

Please visit our sponsor:

AikiWeb Sponsored Links - Place your Aikido link here for only $10!



Closed Thread


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Transmission, Inheritance, Emulation 18 Peter Goldsbury Columns 187 09-08-2011 02:41 PM
Transmission, Inheritance, Emulation 17 Peter Goldsbury Columns 41 06-03-2010 09:46 PM
Transmission, Inheritance, Emulation 14 Peter Goldsbury Columns 38 07-31-2009 11:19 PM
Transmission, Inheritance, Emulation 10 Peter Goldsbury Columns 200 02-04-2009 06:45 AM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:22 AM.



vBulletin Copyright © 2000-2018 Jelsoft Enterprises Limited
----------
Copyright 1997-2018 AikiWeb and its Authors, All Rights Reserved.
----------
For questions and comments about this website:
Send E-mail
plainlaid-picaresque outchasing-protistan explicantia-altarage seaford-stellionate