Some interesting opinions from Roy Goldberg
Sensei from last weekend's joint workshop with Dan Harden in Spain. Roy is one of the highest ranked Daito-ryu Aiki-jujutsu instructors in the world, in or out of Japan, and the only non-Japanese to be awarded 7th dan and kyoju dairi in the Kodokai, as well as having been awarded all three of the Kodokai Daito-ryu scrolls.
Not for nothing, but I'd like to note that Dan endured a lot of noise about his "qualifications" over the years, but all the while he and Goldberg Sensei had actually been working working and training together continuously, and that he is himself also one of the highest ranked Daito-ryu practitioners in the world, although you will never hear him mention it.
At the recent Madrid Seminar with Dan Harden and I, we had people from all sorts of backgrounds: MMA, Aikido, Daito Ryu, Wing Chun, BJJ, Tai Chi and Koryu. Everybody in all arts that attended our seminar saw what is so obvious. Dan and I showed the identical movements of Daito Ryu, just from different perspectives. I use traditional technique to build softness and aiki. Dan comes at it from combative effectiveness. Some refer to what Dan does as "Dan's Stuff," but that cheapens the work he has done with Daito Ryu. Through his study of martial arts history and years of hard training he is able to draw connections between what the Indians did and the Chinese did and what some Daito Ryu people like Takeda, Sagawa, Kodo and Ueshiba all did, but which has been lost and is rarely seen in Daito Ryu today. He takes the same softness and approach that I do, but applies it at a combative speed in a way that no one else does and which is absolutely devastating. This has nothing to do with his size or strength, but is true Aiki. His Shugyo is nonstop. He exhibits a genius in restoring this lost Aiki combativeness to Daito Ryu, completing this beautiful art.
And for all of that, even though he hates it when I say it, I must say thanks Harden Sensei.