Re: The purpose of Aikido?
I have to agree with you and personally, I don't think it was at the top of O'Sensei's priority list and I often wonder if it was on his list at all. I do however feel that it was on the top of this kids priority list and in this situation, that's the only list that really matters. It certainly was on the top of Seagal Sensei's priority list and for those that are looking for a more practical and or effective method within Aikido, I don't think there is a better approach than Tenshin.
This kid asked should it take decades of training to become effective enough to use it in a self defense manner? NO, and if it does, you had a really bad teacher and a shit system to begin with. If this kid would have found or better yet, been directed to the right teacher to help him find what he was looking for, we wouldn't be having this conversation.