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Old 11-18-2006, 04:01 PM   #76
David Orange
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Quote:
Rupert Atkinson wrote:
...when my kid was about 2, he had a plastic sword and came at me with it...he managed to hit me several times in a random kind of way...I took the bokken patterns to pieces and tried teaching/practising the basic parts...an attempt to reach freesyle.

My kid is my teacher!
Rupert, you're very close to what I'm talking about. Taking the patterns apart and looking very closely at the tiniest components. Then see if you can find even tinier parts of the tiniest parts.

Thanks!

David

"That which has no substance can enter where there is no room."
Lao Tzu

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Old 11-18-2006, 04:08 PM   #77
ChrisMoses
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Quote:
Rupert Atkinson wrote:
In 2002, when my kid was about 2, he had a plastic sword and came at me with it while I was practising outside. Of course, I did not want to clobber him with my bokken, but he managed to hit me several times in a random kind of way.
Here's where one of the problems exists as I see it. It wasn't that his attack was so good, it's that you didn't want to hurt him. Take that out of the equation and it probably would have been trivial. Same with the (often cited) idea that it's impossible to open a child's hand. BS, it's easy, but you run the risk of injuring their delicate features, so your brain steps in to limit the ammount of force that you're willing to use.

At a BBQ this summer I was pulling a bunch of flaming hot sausages off of the grill. I had a plate almost full and super-hot greasey tongs in the other hand. Just then one of the barely-upright ones made a mad dash, hands out, for the side of the grill. Along the way he evaided his mother, father and several other adults attempting to restrain him. I didn't have time to put everything down so before I could think I stuck my leg out between him and the grill. He ran into my shin, and I used my foot to coaxe him around 180 degrees. He couldn't evade me, he couldn't trip me and he was effectively powerless against my gentle direction. Why? Because I was using the principles of ju/aiki to affect his skeletal structure, concepts that he has no notion of. Those to me are the roots of ju/aiki, not the gross physical movements.

David, we're bipedal creatures, of course you're going to see similar movements between children and aikido. But again, to be a true root of aiki, I believe it has to be something unique to the methods and strategies of aikido. Beyond that, it's just human movement *and would be common to every single human physical endeavor. Good Aikido requires good basic body skills and awareness, but someone with those attributes does not in any way automatically personify aikido.

Finally, not everyone likes Feldenkrais, it is far from a universally accepted concept.
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Old 11-18-2006, 04:35 PM   #78
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Quote:
David Orange wrote:
...
No, I don't think you need to use that word. I understand your emotions. It's okay. You're flailing.
...
Well, you're very broadly generalizing in a way that tells me you have not really observed babies in action. Do you have children of your own? How much time have you spent really dealing with toddlers?

Again, you generalize very broadly. Children are not really that terribly uncoordinated or weak. You should observe chidren much more before you continue commenting.

And I'm only talking about a phenomenon about as long-lived as the spark you get when you touch a door knob. I don't think you have the perception to detect something that fine from your comments.
David
It seems you really want to patronise and insult me David.
Well, you are a deluded fool.
I have raised four children and observed them just fine, but not from the misguided point of view of trying to find techniques and principles of aikido in their movements, that'd just be silly.

Quote:
David Orange wrote:
How much time have you spent really dealing with toddlers?
TWELVE YEARS.
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Old 11-18-2006, 09:55 PM   #79
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Quote:
Christian Moses wrote:
Here's where one of the problems exists as I see it. It wasn't that his attack was so good, it's that you didn't want to hurt him. Take that out of the equation and it probably would have been trivial .
Yes, but in training in the dojo, I do not want to hurt you either ...

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Old 11-18-2006, 11:29 PM   #80
David Orange
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Quote:
Christian Moses wrote:
...one of the barely-upright ones made a mad dash, hands out, for the side of the grill. Along the way he evaided his mother, father and several other adults attempting to restrain him. I didn't have time to put everything down so before I could think I stuck my leg out between him and the grill. He ran into my shin, and I used my foot to coaxe him around 180 degrees. He couldn't evade me, he couldn't trip me and he was effectively powerless against my gentle direction. Why? Because I was using the principles of ju/aiki to affect his skeletal structure, concepts that he has no notion of. Those to me are the roots of ju/aiki, not the gross physical movements.
So how many years of ju-aiki training do you have? And you were the only one there who could stop that toddler? You have made my point for me, Chris. He had more ju-aiki than anyone there except someone who had been training for many years. He evaded all of them with ju and aiki. What you're talking about is only more highly developed ju and aiki.

Quote:
Christian Moses wrote:
David, we're bipedal creatures, of course you're going to see similar movements between children and aikido. But again, to be a true root of aiki, I believe it has to be something unique to the methods and strategies of aikido.
What about Mikel's first example does not show the unique methods and strategies of aikido? The girl did not conflict with the boy. She used circular motion, timed to his motion, in harmony with his direction and effort and fulfilled her own goal, which was not to throw him, but to keep control of the cell phone.

When we start practicing these things not as a support of daily life but to throw for throwing's sake, maybe that's what Morihei Ueshiba meant by "You are not doing aikido."

Quote:
Christian Moses wrote:
Finally, not everyone likes Feldenkrais, it is far from a universally accepted concept.
Which part is not accepted? There are some things he says that I can't accept, but in general, I find, through experience and observation, that most of what he says is true. And his Method has produced great results for thousands and thousands of people. But it comprises a very broad and subtle range of ideas. Which ones, in particular, do you reject?

And last, what about that interesting article on Aikido Journal, in which Morihei Ueshiba says "If you could understand the secret, you could do aikido at my level in three months"?

What secret does he mean by that?

http://www.roleystoneaiki.com/The%20...of%20Aiki.html

David

"That which has no substance can enter where there is no room."
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Old 11-18-2006, 11:45 PM   #81
David Orange
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

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Michael Douglas wrote:
It seems you really want to patronise and insult me David.
Well, you are a deluded fool.
Let it out, Michael. I feel your pain. You are afraid that all the hard effort you've put into learning aikido is being mocked. Well, it's not. The art of aikido has my highest respect. And no effort is really wasted. But I am telling you that you could gain more with less and have a better relationship with your children as well.

You have directed all your efforts to replacing your natural reflexes with a set of responses that you seem to think were invented outside humanity, in an abstract, intellectual vacuum, like nuclear formulae, then pressure cooked into human beings.

I am telling you that aiki already resides in the more primitive part of your nervous system that cannot be conditioned and which will remain and express itself when your conditioning stops or when the stimulus is too sudden or intense. Your primitive responses will over-ride your training.

The method to make aiki sure and permanent is to build it on those primitive reflexes that will always be with you and which have gotten human beings through the millenia without special training. The trick is to find the particular reflexes on which aiki is based and understand aikido techniques deeply enough to train your techniques on those primitive reflexes.

Quote:
Michael Douglas wrote:
I have raised four children and observed them just fine, but not from the misguided point of view of trying to find techniques and principles of aikido in their movements, that'd just be silly.
Unless it's true. Again, we're talking about very subtle moments in the behavior of children, mostly when they are "misbehaving" and you are either intent on forcing them to do what you want or calling for your wife to control them. From all your comments, you don't seem to respect childhood much at all, so I doubt you have really paid much attention to the subtle communications that are going on with "misbehavior" and resistance to your iron will. If you're that rigid with your training partners and don't observe them any better than that on the mat, it's no wonder that you don't really see the point of aiki.

Quote:
Michael Douglas wrote:
TWELVE YEARS.
And how many years of aiki training, with whom, and where? And how much of the twelve years you've been dealing with children have you really not even been around them, but in a dojo trying to learn about nature? I submit that you have not really observed those children very closely at all.

And last, please comment on the Aikido Journal article in which Ueshiba O-Sensei says that if you caught the secret of aiki you could be doing aikido on his level in three months. And don't forget my question: can a rabbit eat an oak tree?

Best to you.

David

"That which has no substance can enter where there is no room."
Lao Tzu

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Old 11-18-2006, 11:46 PM   #82
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Quote:
Rupert Atkinson wrote:
Yes, but in training in the dojo, I do not want to hurt you either ...

"That which has no substance can enter where there is no room."
Lao Tzu

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Old 11-18-2006, 11:48 PM   #83
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Quote:
David Orange wrote:
So how many years of ju-aiki training do you have? And you were the only one there who could stop that toddler? You have made my point for me, Chris. He had more ju-aiki than anyone there except someone who had been training for many years. He evaded all of them with ju and aiki. What you're talking about is only more highly developed ju and aiki.
Ju/aiki is not evasion. It's subtle direction and *control*. Period. Your definition of aiki seems to include any physical skill.
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Old 11-18-2006, 11:50 PM   #84
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Quote:
Rupert Atkinson wrote:
Yes, but in training in the dojo, I do not want to hurt you either ...
Your scenario included weapons. Weapons confrontations (particularly swords which was the specific scenario) traditionally ended in one of three outcomes. A dies, B lives. A lives B dies. A and B die. That's it. By not wanting to do harm in a (theoretically) lethal scenario you forfeited the encounter.
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Old 11-19-2006, 12:03 AM   #85
David Orange
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Quote:
Christian Moses wrote:
Ju/aiki is not evasion. It's subtle direction and *control*. Period.
I don't agree. I think it means to walk your own way, regardless of who tries to stop you and make you do something else. And babies are excellent at that. And that is the root of aiki. It's when we turn it into a brand-name product that people lose sight of the purpose. We don't practice throwing and joint locking just to be throwing and locking joints. We practice them so that we can be free to be ourselves and not susceptible to bullies who would try to control us. We don't necessarily have to get tied up in their game. Ueshiba O-Sensei often did not do anything at all "to" his attackers. He just evaded and kept moving and they fell down from their own efforts. The baby you described could only be controlled by someone with more highly developed aiki than his own.

Quote:
Christian Moses wrote:
Your definition of aiki seems to include any physical skill.
Well, it has to have certain qualities. But where's all the terrible balance I keep hearing about in babies? That baby seems to have had great balance. He had speed, he was able to change direction and elude vigorous adult efforts to catch him. Sounds like a little O-Sensei. Could you do as well in a crowd of 18-foot-tall and 1,600 pound opponents, all trying to capture you?

David

"That which has no substance can enter where there is no room."
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Old 11-19-2006, 12:14 AM   #86
David Orange
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Talking Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Quote:
Christian Moses wrote:
Your scenario included weapons. Weapons confrontations (particularly swords which was the specific scenario) traditionally ended in one of three outcomes. A dies, B lives. A lives B dies. A and B die. That's it. By not wanting to do harm in a (theoretically) lethal scenario you forfeited the encounter.
So if you're teaching basics of sword to an eight-year-old, do you try to hurt him? Do you try to frighten him? Does he ever come back to learn more? You're dealing with a sprout. Don't you stake up your tomatoe plants, or do you expect them stand on their own against the wind when they're barely growing?

What Rupert learned was that even a child could hit him with a sword. Sobered him right up.

As I mentioned to Tim Fong earlier, there are many "tests" of the reality of aikido that most aikidoists, in my experience, will fail. One of those is a serious sword attack. I've seen lots of aikidoists who deliberately strike far wide of the defender and the whole group is seriously deluded about the quality of their aiki movements. They really freak if you cut straight and true--even if you make the allowances necessary not to hit them. But if you were trying to hit them, it would be easy, so their aikido is not real, is it? There's no substitute for the rubber sword, where that test is concerned. Wakes you right up and one must know that whatever is touched is cut completely off the body. So understand that when I talk about aiki, that's my standard. But you have to make allowances for beginners and you don't expect a baby to perform at the level of a trained adult. Sometimes, they're better!

David

Last edited by David Orange : 11-19-2006 at 12:15 AM. Reason: To spice up the message with a fancy emoticon!!!

"That which has no substance can enter where there is no room."
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Old 11-19-2006, 12:27 AM   #87
David Orange
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Quote:
Christian Moses wrote:
Ju/aiki is not evasion. It's subtle direction and *control*. Period. Your definition of aiki seems to include any physical skill.
But I say that evasion is the first step of aiki--evasion while keeping one's own balance and ability to move at will.

If you can't keep the opponent from landing his force on you, then you can't effect direction and control. If you can't keep him from trapping you, you certainly can't then trap him.

So evasion is the root of aiki, and that's all I have ever said that children have: the root. But they have the whole root, viable and able to be cultivated. They can evade the efforts of much larger, stronger people, maintain their own position and be ready to move again at will. You just gave an excellent example of a toddler doing all that.

Once they can do that, they can learn to subtle direction and how to take control. But without that ability, you have nothing to build on.

Does that make more sense?

Best to you.

David

"That which has no substance can enter where there is no room."
Lao Tzu

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Old 11-19-2006, 02:07 AM   #88
Rupert Atkinson
 
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Quote:
Christian Moses wrote:
Your scenario included weapons. Weapons confrontations (particularly swords which was the specific scenario) traditionally ended in one of three outcomes. A dies, B lives. A lives B dies. A and B die. That's it. By not wanting to do harm in a (theoretically) lethal scenario you forfeited the encounter.
So, if you are still alive, then you must be A. How many people have you killed lately?

Me, I just train in a dojo with a fake sword against mostly fake attacks. My kid is the only one who really tries to get me - and I am serious! To him, with his plastic sword, the glean in his eye is as real as it gets.

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Old 11-19-2006, 10:36 AM   #89
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Quote:
Rupert Atkinson wrote:
So, if you are still alive, then you must be A. How many people have you killed lately?

Me, I just train in a dojo with a fake sword against mostly fake attacks. My kid is the only one who really tries to get me - and I am serious! To him, with his plastic sword, the glean in his eye is as real as it gets.
Look, I'm supposing that you weren't trying to hit your kid, but only trying to block his attacks. If you take away the ability to attack and only defend, you are lost already. I would imagine that given the same scenario but with a teenager (who supposedly whould have already been programmed away from the natural aiki movements of his infancy) it would be *more* difficult not less. That's what I'm getting at. Even though we train in dojos, we must struggle to make the encounter as real as possible, that means both parties having the intellectual maturity to enter into a very dangerous headspace and cooperate in an honest manner.
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Old 11-19-2006, 10:40 AM   #90
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Quote:
David Orange wrote:
But I say that evasion is the first step of aiki--evasion while keeping one's own balance and ability to move at will.

If you can't keep the opponent from landing his force on you, then you can't effect direction and control. If you can't keep him from trapping you, you certainly can't then trap him.

So evasion is the root of aiki, and that's all I have ever said that children have: the root. But they have the whole root, viable and able to be cultivated. They can evade the efforts of much larger, stronger people, maintain their own position and be ready to move again at will. You just gave an excellent example of a toddler doing all that.

Once they can do that, they can learn to subtle direction and how to take control. But without that ability, you have nothing to build on.

Does that make more sense?

Best to you.

David
Thanks David. In my mind this is the first useful post of this thread, because now we can understand what you consider to be the root of aiki movement. I now fully understand why we disagree so completely. I totally and utterly disagree with that understanding of what the 'root' nature of aiki is. Therefore it would follow that we would be in disagreement.

Here's something to ponder:
-If the goal of aikido's movements is to defeat the opponent at the moment of contact, how is this defeat manifest if one has merely evaded the initial attack and the attacker is free to launch another attack?
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Old 11-19-2006, 11:24 AM   #91
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

I don't think we really have anything in common as far as movement and understanding of Aiki. Evasion of that order isn't Aiki in my view. It is of the lowest order and nothing more than gross motor movement. I guess with practice if you can lead someone offerng an attack then it is better but still gross motor movement.
I see where you are coming from since I used to think that evasive movement stuff had merit years ago.
So Dave, as a motion experiment....
Lets say you grab me and start, try to fit in for O' Goshi.
Lets say you have my arm and gi.
Version one
a. I don't move my feet
b. I don't move my arms
c, you can't move at all

Version two
a. I don't move my feet
b. I don't move my arms
c, You get in to the point where you start to fit in with your feet and hip
d. you lock yourself up and collapse at my feet or pop yourself off.

1. What did I do?
2. Since you can't move or control your own body where does Aiki fit in?
3. Since it is of a higher order and far more controlling- is it superior?
4. Where did evasion happen
5. What child knows this and can do it? I know of few men who actually train to do it who can with any consistency.

Cheers
Dan

Last edited by DH : 11-19-2006 at 11:39 AM.
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Old 11-19-2006, 11:52 AM   #92
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Sorry I couldn't edit in.
What I was clearly defining and discounting is that none of what I outlined is or ever was "natural movement." If someones goals were higher level martial arts, then the pursuit of natural movement is a waste of a decade or two.

Cheers anyway bud
Dan

Last edited by DH : 11-19-2006 at 11:58 AM.
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Old 11-19-2006, 12:05 PM   #93
David Orange
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Quote:
Rupert Atkinson wrote:
My kid is the only one who really tries to get me - and I am serious! To him, with his plastic sword, the glean in his eye is as real as it gets.
And that is kiai in a baby. It should be no stretch for anyone to recognize that toddlers have kiai. Since aiki is only the ura of kiai, and "every front has a back," logically, toddlers cannot but have aiki.

That's the grape juice from which the wine of aiki is aged.

Thanks.

David

"That which has no substance can enter where there is no room."
Lao Tzu

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Old 11-19-2006, 12:48 PM   #94
David Orange
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Quote:
Christian Moses wrote:
Here's something to ponder:
-If the goal of aikido's movements is to defeat the opponent at the moment of contact, how is this defeat manifest if one has merely evaded the initial attack and the attacker is free to launch another attack?
The point you are missing is that you are talking about the goal and I am talking about the root. You're talking the roofbeam and I am talking about the footing. You're talking aged wine and I am talking grape juice before yeast has even been added.

Talking about the "goal," let's look in terms of sword attacks. If one does not somehow evade the attack, he is dead and the attacker will not need to launch another attack.

At the root, evasion is the primary thing but what surprised me in my observation was that children were evading in ways like I had learned in aikido--turning, slipping past the power of the adult, maintaining posture, ending where they were strong and the adult was weak.

In the intermediate range, while developing combat aiki, I have seen people such as Kondo sensei, doing aiki technique without tai sabaki. He stood in place, parried the overhead strike and wrapped it into a throw that brought the attacker into a pin at his feet. But then we see O-Sensei weaving among his attackers in randori with many of them falling because he is not where they are striking.

So there are many ways to evade, including entering before the attack can be fully formed. But his does not obliviate the fact that some of aiki uses evasion through tai sabaki.

The fact that children's aiki movements are rudimentary, brief and usually quickly overcome by people three times their size and probably nine times their weight should not prevent anyone's seeing that it was, nonetheless, there for a moment, like a spark jumping from the doorknob to your finger. If you look closely enough, like Franklin, you will see that that tiny spark looks exactly like lightning and shares its fundamental nature.

Best to you.

David

Comments on O-Sensei's article? Can a rabbit eat an oak tree?

"That which has no substance can enter where there is no room."
Lao Tzu

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Old 11-19-2006, 01:18 PM   #95
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Quote:
David Orange wrote:
The point you are missing is that you are talking about the goal and I am talking about the root. You're talking the roofbeam and I am talking about the footing. You're talking aged wine and I am talking grape juice before yeast has even been added.

Talking about the "goal," let's look in terms of sword attacks. If one does not somehow evade the attack, he is dead and the attacker will not need to launch another attack.

[snip]

Comments on O-Sensei's article? Can a rabbit eat an oak tree?
Again, you're assuming we're taling about the same thing. We're not. Any system which presupposes that evasion or avoidance is the root of aiki isn't what I'm talking about. Irimi could be considered the fundamental priciple of aiki. This is the counterintuitive aspect of aikido strategy, that I'm safest by moving into an attack than away from it. You're giving examples of something else which I don't consider to be aikido.

I don't feel like commenting on the article. I'm not interested in rabbits and oak trees.

If you have the manual translated as "Budo Training in Aikido" would you care to comment on the total lack of avoidance or evasion as a strategy, but rather the constant emphasis on an overpowering attack or at least irimi?
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Old 11-19-2006, 01:27 PM   #96
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote:
The higher levels of what your body can do are simply not natural at all. In fact they are un-natural in nature and take years to perfect.
Dan, I used to believe that about aiki. But the fact is, if something really is "un-natural" for human beings, we cannot do it at all without some kind of mechanical support. Flying is un-natural for humans. Natural for birds, but humans need a flying machine to enable us. Breathing underwater is unnatural for humans. It's natural for fish, but humans require self-contained underwater breathing apparati or compressed air tubes to send air down to us below the surface of the waves.

But anything that can be done by the human body without mechanical aid and without causing long-term damamge, but actually improving health and well-being must, by definition, be "natural".

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote:
The body? Has no essential need for them and therefore no happenstance to have discovered them.
Well, how were these skills discovered, then? Were they conceived intellectually, in abstract thinking, then forced unnaturally on the body? My point is that we can only cultivate from the body things that the body is naturally capable of doing. Some of those things can be destructive, such as staying awake for days at a time or having sex with everything that moves. They are a distortion of nature. Likewise, some kinds of excessive conditioning by striking objects with the body, or certain types of breathing methods. I think you will agree that improperly done chi gung can destroy the practitioner's health. I have heard, in fact, that people who practice san chin kata tend to die younger than others. Haven't researched that, but it's always been said that improper training in internal arts can be deleterious to the health.

If you're doing a kind of training that is not destructive to the health and can be done without mechanical aids, then the most I will agree to is that it is a highly counter-intuitive cultivation of some fine skills of the body. As I've referred to wine in many posts, I'll say again that grapes sometimes ferment and produce alcohol in nature, but to produce large volumes of high-quality alcohol and keep it from spoiling, we have to go through a very careful process. Still, that does not, at any point, conflict with nature or go outside the processes of nature. It simply refines them to a very pronounced level, resulting in something not likely to be found in pure nature. Still, the grape on the vine is the source of it.

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote:
Why would the body adopt them for movement in the human frame as a "natural need" in the first place, for a child-only to lose them? Did the child morph into a cucumber or a quadraped or a motor vehicle and not have the "natural need" anymore?
The body does not "adopt" the roots of aiki. They are innate. The child loses them because he loses many aspects of himself due to social conditioning. His parents always overcome his rudimentary aiki, so before he can even recognize it as a potential method, he learns that size and strength are superior and he gives up subtle methods to get bigger and stronger. And, to a large degree, he loses the ability to focus on anything except what he's told to focus on, to think about anything but what he's told to think about. But if he becomes big and strong, but has no ability to think for himself because social pressure has made him emotionally afraid, then how is he better off? In other words, the child is pressured far beyond his ability to resist, resulting in the belief that size and strength and the group opinion are more important than individual thinking and subtlety.

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote:
Percentage wise, how many men can do them, even among those who have searched half their lives to find them in the first place. A child not only cannot have "discovered" these un-natural movements or body methods- by a natural process of discovery- and then lost them-they cannot have learned them in the first place.
Well, again, children do not "discover" the methods of aiki. They use them because their nervous systems contain them innately. They use them because the feel the opportunity to escape into the weak point of greater strength and they apply their whole being to the effort. What about Mikel Hamer's first illustration of the girl with the cell phone? I believe that Morihei Ueshiba and Koichi Tohei would both agree that what she did was natural aikido.

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote:
It takes a greater level of concentration and mental control then they posses. And last it takes years of concentraion in interplay to develope them to a high degree with interaction.
Well, again, you're talking ultimate development--not root. If it's innate to the nervous system, but very subtle, most people will lose it because social pressure crushes their ability to perceive very fine distinctions.

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote:
Followng the examples offered in the videos and descriptions- if a person thinks "leading" in front of a push or "blending" by moving and "opening your door" is something akin to what aiki is, or is anything of a high order. I wish them well in their pursuits.
Dan, I'm just not sure what it is that yo do. I don't think it's primarily aiki. What you do could be applied to any martial art, but it does not, in itself, define any of them.

What I mean about aikido is a lifetime of experience of ordinary people learning to move in harmony with others to overcome their strength and prevent the other person from dominating them.

Morihei Ueshiba began his martial arts training because he witnessed his father's being beaten by a group of people who disliked his political views. Many women began training because they didn't want to be raped. I began because I had always been small and non-atletic and had been bullied a lot by people who were stronger and more athletic.

Now let me recount some experiences. A girlfriend of mine joined the aikido class I attended for a few months. One night a guy grabbed her in a bear hug from behind. She took one step forward and bowed, sending the guy face first into the sidewalk, leaving her able to stand up and laugh at him.

A young lady trained for a few months in my class in the early eighties before moving to New York City. On two different occasions, she was "attacked" by two men at a time and in both cases, she dispatched both attackers with a single move--each time a move no one had ever taught her, but which was spontaneous to the situation and totall effective at getting rid of both guys.

A number of times, I have faced two people at once and stopped the attackers without having to fight them and without having to give up anything, including my position and my dignity. I didn't change anything for them and I didn't have to hurt any of them. In fact, in all my serious encounters since beginning martial arts, I've only had to touch someone one time.

Which brings us to another aspect of aiki--recognizing the opponent's intentions and disuading him with a single glance--as Sokaku Takeda said, "The art of aiki is to overcome the opponent mentally, at a glance, and win without fighting."

I have been very successful at that many times since beginning aikido training in 1975.

All this is to say that, along with my time in Japan as uchi deshi, I am perfectly satisfied with what I have gotten from aikido, what it has done for me, what it has done for my students and what I am able to do with it now. If I have missed anything that you have learned, it has not meant that my aikido has not worked every bit as well as I have ever hoped for. So I think you're talking about something other than aiki in these things you describe.

Not that I discount what you do. In fact, I'm still hoping to meet up with you one of these days and experience the things you are talking about. But I have had perfectly fine results from the aikido I have learned over the past 31 years and I have observe children able to do things that could easily be trained into advanced aikido if anyone recognized it in them and knew how to train it.

Hope we can get together sooner rather than later.

Best wishes.

David

"That which has no substance can enter where there is no room."
Lao Tzu

"Eternity forever!"

www.davidorangejr.com
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Old 11-19-2006, 01:34 PM   #97
David Orange
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Quote:
Christian Moses wrote:
Irimi could be considered the fundamental priciple of aiki. This is the counterintuitive aspect of aikido strategy, that I'm safest by moving into an attack than away from it. You're giving examples of something else which I don't consider to be aikido.
In the first baby aikido video, the baby uses irimi tenkan to get into position for sankyo.

Quote:
Christian Moses wrote:
I don't feel like commenting on the article. I'm not interested in rabbits and oak trees.
Well, maybe you don't consider Morihei Ueshiba's ideas on aiki to be relevant, but even students of Sokaku Takeda had to grudgingly admit that he was outstanding in his aiki ability. Did you read the article?

The question on rabbits is directly relevant to your belief that children can't do aiki.

Quote:
Christian Moses wrote:
If you have the manual translated as "Budo Training in Aikido" would you care to comment on the total lack of avoidance or evasion as a strategy, but rather the constant emphasis on an overpowering attack or at least irimi?
As I said, I've seen Kondo Sensei demonstrate standing in a spot, parrying the incoming shomen uchi and throwing the attacker with that. And as I said, the baby used irimi to enter into position for sankyo.

But could you use such pure-strength tactics against someone three times your own size? When the strength and size are so overwhelming, no one can. Evasion and turning are essential aiki in that circumstance.

David

"That which has no substance can enter where there is no room."
Lao Tzu

"Eternity forever!"

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Old 11-19-2006, 02:11 PM   #98
ChrisMoses
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Quote:
David Orange wrote:

But could you use such pure-strength tactics against someone three times your own size? When the strength and size are so overwhelming, no one can. Evasion and turning are essential aiki in that circumstance.

David
This last post has demonstrated to me at least that you have no real concept of how irimi works. I'm not talking about strength on strength, neither is Dan. Bye now.
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Old 11-19-2006, 02:51 PM   #99
Tim Fong
 
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

David,

Do you remember the "pushout" exercise/videos that Rob posted a while back? You can use that type of movement to stop someone much larger than yourself, and off balance them without moving your feet. You should give it a shot. It's not "technique" the way you think about it, as vectoring and angles through large externally visible movement. It's more about technique that is developed to learn how to move _inside_ the body.
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Old 11-19-2006, 06:44 PM   #100
David Orange
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Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Quote:
Tim Fong wrote:
David,

Do you remember the "pushout" exercise/videos that Rob posted a while back? You can use that type of movement to stop someone much larger than yourself, and off balance them without moving your feet. You should give it a shot. It's not "technique" the way you think about it, as vectoring and angles through large externally visible movement. It's more about technique that is developed to learn how to move _inside_ the body.
Tim, I've actually tried that a bit. It seems interesting, in light of some of the explanations I've read--yours in particular.

Actually, I have had great success moving people much larger than myself and being unmoveable to them with just the aikido training. Recently, a large, young football player for my university team came by and wanted to try aikido, so I showed him the fundamentals.

Among other things, I had him grab my arm with both hands, then pressed down and curled in and up. It's one of the basic kokyu ho in Saito's book, "Aikido: It's Heart and Appearance." The football player, much larger and heavier than I, and a weight trainer used to muscling people around, came off his balance and didn't move me, even though I was standing in a shoulder-width stance.

I didn't try the push-out exercise with him as I don't really know it that well, but I was able to move him around from a shoulder-width stance without stepping and without working hard. He was pretty impressed and my regular training partner was impressed. He said it was interesting to see me do those things to someone else. He'd felt them many times, but had never seen what it looked like when I did it to someone else.

After that, I did two-man seizing with one of them on each arm. I moved both of them around easily.

So while I don't consider myself on Dan's level, I'm not a stranger to moving bigger, stronger people around and neutralizing their strength.

I do know that you can uproot force by entering, but there may be a limit to this. Anyway, if I can't overcome their force, I can change directions and move them in another way.

Second, if the attack is with a sword, you must evade the attack, no matter how you slice it. There is no way to overcome a sword cut or thrust but by evading it and not being in its path.

And third, if the attacker is Akebono, I wonder how well Chris or Dan or any of the other internal adherents would do? I think they would be doing well to hold up as smartly as the baby. So it's a relative term. Chris gave examples of the baby evading all those adults who had to be three times his height and nine times his weight. And while that may not have illustrated all the principles of aiki and none at the height of the potential development, I maintain that it did illustrate important root qualities of aiki.

Thanks,

David

"That which has no substance can enter where there is no room."
Lao Tzu

"Eternity forever!"

www.davidorangejr.com
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