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Old 01-08-2001, 12:59 PM   #1
Iwama_Ryu
Dojo: Budo Triangeln
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Excuse me for my grammar it isnt very good and so isnt my speling either.
Im 15 and from sweden so I hope you understand

I have been a christian all my life untill i became 14 and began with aikido. I have been a dedicated aikidoka ever since. But when i started to take my practice to a higher level i understud from the first moment that I trained Christianity and aikido didnt fit together. When i became 15 i saw the movie "On danrerous ground" with Steven segall where he in the end talked about the destruction of the earth. i understood from the first moment that this was christianity fault.
All other religions speeks about that everything has a soul and so on and tries to live in the way of nature. But christianity takes for granted that every thing exept christianty sucks if i may say so. They destroy and poison the earth.

All of my family is christian and has allways been so. My grand father is a fantic if i may say so and my father lives by the christian rules but it is something that isn't right with christianity. Can someone please tell me??????????

Johannes Davidsoon 6:kyu
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Old 01-08-2001, 02:00 PM   #2
Erik
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This could get dangerous. My general take is that there is no reason that Christianity and Aikido cannot coexist. Aikido is not a religion, although it gets treated as such by some, and should not be in direct conflict with the church. Now some church loonies might have issues with Aikido but that's a different matter and why I tend not to have much regard for the church itself.

I would also be careful of taking Seagal too seriously. I would no more look to him for spiritual guidance than I would ask the local celibate priest for advice on sexual practices. They both will be glad to give advice but what's it worth?

I used to practice Aikido with a father Avila. He was a very nice guy and didn't seem to see any conflict between Aikido and the church. Your Aikido instructor isn't Aikido and the church is not Christianity.
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Old 01-08-2001, 02:51 PM   #3
REK
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Erik wrote:
This could get dangerous.

It certainly could. Let's hope no one takes personal offense to the opinions in this thread. I think it could be very enlightening.

My general take is that there is no reason that Christianity and Aikido cannot coexist. Aikido is not a religion, although it gets treated as such by some, and should not be in direct conflict with the church.


Well said. Why must anyone's interpretation of aikido (or religion) be THE final and ultimate truth?

I would also be careful of taking Seagal too seriously. I would no more look to him for spiritual guidance than I would ask the local celibate priest for advice on sexual practices.

He he he. You sound like my grandfather.

Your Aikido instructor isn't Aikido and the church is not Christianity.

Can I use that?

Rob

________________________
Mors certa, hora incerta
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Old 01-08-2001, 03:53 PM   #4
Brian
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Quote:
Iwama_Ryu wrote:
. But when i started to take my practice to a higher level i understud from the first moment that I trained Christianity and aikido didnt fit together.
Please explain why you don't think they fit together. It's obvious you have a strong opinion on this, but you didn't divulge why. Seeing as how aikido is a martial art that promotes love and peace, ending hostile situations while doing as little harm to your attacker as possible, and Christianity is (get this,) a religion that promotes love and peace, a famous Gospel quote being "turn the other cheek," I don't see how they don't fit together.

Quote:
Iwama_Ryu wrote:

When i became 15 i saw the movie "On danrerous ground" with Steven segall where he in the end talked about the destruction of the earth. i understood from the first moment that this was christianity fault.

Again, why exactly do you think that the destruction of the earth is the fault of Christianity? Pollution is accumulated from all over the earth, from nations with dominant religions completely different from Christianity , yet you think only Christians are destroying the earth.

Quote:
Iwama_Ryu wrote:


All other religions speeks about that everything has a soul and so on and tries to live in the way of nature. But christianity takes for granted that every thing exept christianty sucks if i may say so. They destroy and poison the earth.

Actually, Christianity, in general, doesn't specify whether or not to live in 'the way of nature,' as you put it. Also, the religion cannot be attributed with the 'destruction' and 'poisoning' of the earth, but to the expansion of civilization. Please go deeper on why you believe Christianity 'sucks,' and why Christians destroy and poison the earth. I cannot speak for every Christian denomination (there are several major sects, and several hundred minor sects), but Catholicism teaches that we are the stewards of earth, and should do our best to take care of and preserve it. As a veteran of many a on-line conversations about religions, please realize that almost every religion has different sects, each with different teachings and ideals. Some may be very minor, others so different they barely resemble any of the others, only keeping true to the core concept. Generalizing as you did by including all Christianity is almost impossible because of the vast differences between the denominations.

Quote:
Iwama_Ryu wrote:

All of my family is christian and has allways been so. My grand father is a fantic if i may say so and my father lives by the christian rules but it is something that isn't right with christianity. Can someone please tell me??????????
With certain denominations, only to the extent that those denominations conflict with what I believe in. With Christianity as a whole, I wouldn't bet on it.
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Old 01-09-2001, 01:48 AM   #5
T'zur
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Aiki-Christianity

I too would like to know why you find aikido and Christianity at conflict with one another. Perhaps my story will help some: I am a Christian, and have been for 11 years now. I began practicing aikido 3 years ago. At first I ran into a few problems, didn't like the idea of bowing to O'Sensei at the begining of class at first. (hold no... idols... do not bow.... Leviticus 26:1) My instructor(also a christian, actually) said that if we didn't want to, we didn't have to. For a while I didn't, I was more comfortable NOT doing this. Then I began to ask around at seminars and such where there were LOTS of higher belts, wanted to know what THEY thought out Shomen-rae. They did not view O'sensei as a god, so why should I? Here a lot of aikido and Christianity can come together in my view: I believe on faith that the God of the Bible is God. NOT that O'sensei is. He is not an issue. Rather, my heart before God is important. Just as a nage's size and stregnth are not as important as what's inside them! The 'blending' aspect of aikido also seems congruent with Christianity. When we are commanded to 'love one another' what are we being asked to do, but blend with each other? Surely God knows we are going to have arguments, He wants us to resolve them. Someone comes after you with bad energy, be that a knife (tanto) or a cutting remark, as an aikidoka, your response is to perform Tai Sabaki. Let the energy go by and maintain control of both you and them. As a Christian your responsibility would be to 'regard each one as better than yourself' (Phillipians 2:3) and treat than person in a respectful manner BECAUSE they are created in the image of God. I find the two worldviews complimentary and I see my Christian walk AND my aikido as improved because of the other.

--Solomonwannabe

- Do not fear for I am with you, do not be dismayed for I am your God, surely I will stregnthen you, surely I will help you, surely I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.- Isa. 41:10
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Old 01-09-2001, 04:36 AM   #6
Iwama_Ryu
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I was looking for someone to understand me!!!

I have an quite big issue in my life. Thats the that i tried to explain. I don't like Christianity. It's something that i cant explain that chrashes with the aikido. And i don't consider Seagall as an spiritual leader but he made me se clearer.
But i stand at my point where Christianity. But this is important.
It is the christianitys mentality that is bad NOT the religon itself.
I haven't said that aikido is an religon but an philosophy. I now that many people doesn't like this subject beacuse it hurts their inner belives. I also did so in the begining, but i have come over it.
I said that the christianity destoys earth. Offcourse does other religons do so to. But is a said before the christian mentality that they are better than everyone else. I have to go may come more later this evening i like the subject

Johannes Davidsoon 6:kyu
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Old 01-09-2001, 04:52 AM   #7
Creature_of_the_id
 
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Hi Johannes,
First of all I will say that I am not christian and have no need for religion in my life.
I am interested in what you say, this is not an attack, just an observation.
You say that christianity mentality is bad, and that they think they are better than anyone else.
But, in labelling them bad you are putting yourself in a stance in which you view yourself better than them, and so it cant be resolved wither way.

People judge the world based on there experiences, which is fair enough. but if we look at our experiences we can see that they are limited. that we have not had every experience there is to be had and so our judgements are created from incomplete information.
If we realise that imperfection is created by comparing the world to how we believe it should be, and that these beliefs are limited we can let go of the beliefs, and therefore judgement, and become in harmony. which is the aiki way
and if you look into christianity closely without the dogma then you will find amazing similarities.


Love
Kev
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Old 01-09-2001, 05:16 AM   #8
andrew
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Re: I was looking for someone to understand me!!!

Quote:
Iwama_Ryu wrote:
But is a said before the christian mentality that they are better than everyone else.
I never came accross that one, and it sounds like you're straying into the territory of "the white mans burden" and all that kind of rubbish. That is to say, you're confusing christianity with imperialism, because most of the imperial oppressor type of nations were european "christian" powers. However, nobody ever enslaved whole nations for anything other than money and power, whatever might have been claimed with regard to spreading christianity while they were slaughtering the locals.

Anyhow, I never felt superior to anybody until I read your original post and..(JOKE!)

Actually, I'd love to say you're wrong about Christianity and Aikido clashing, but what do I know about aikido? (answer- very little.) I'll just say I've never spotted it, and I think maybe your interest in aikido is really unrelated to your dislike for christianity. Maybe.
andrew

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Old 01-09-2001, 08:35 AM   #9
Iwama_Ryu
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Creature of the id have understood!!! NOT

I know that i have learned (that you learn from mistakes) and I'm sorry about this disscusion if i've been hurting you peoples lifes. You cant compare different mentalites. I think i have to talk with someone that i able to lissen beacuse i doesn't feel like if i can express myself in this disscusion. I hope that someone learned something and i give up.

You have proved me wrong in the things i vrote about. But still think that aikido and christianity doesn't fit together. Maybe beacuse i'm uncertain.

Have a good life and reach Nirvana in peace with yourself


JOhannes DAvidsson

Johannes Davidsoon 6:kyu
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Old 01-09-2001, 08:46 AM   #10
Creature_of_the_id
 
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Dont be sorry about the discussion, it is interesting.
You cant be blamed for how others choose to react.
I dont know in what way you took my post but it didnt seem to be taken in the manner that it was offered.I was just offering an opinion, a different perspective. I thought that that is what discussions are for

I dont mean any offense, and if you would prefer us to sit and listen instead of offering other ways of looking at things all you have to do is say.

Love
Kev
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Old 01-09-2001, 09:11 AM   #11
Iwama_Ryu
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You got it wrong!!

Creature of id i didn't what wrote to you i was just uppset i hsve lot of troubles in my life created by religion and its questions.

I reasd it but I explained the first question all wrong

Johannes Davidsoon 6:kyu
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Old 01-09-2001, 10:11 AM   #12
Brian Vickery
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Re: You got it wrong!!

Quote:
Iwama_Ryu wrote:
Creature of id i didn't what wrote to you i was just uppset i hsve lot of troubles in my life created by religion and its questions.
Before making such sweeping decisions & generalizations, let's stop & define some terms here.
First off, let's separate Christianty into two catagories, one being 'spirituality' and the other being 'religion'.

Spirituality is YOUR personal relationship with Christ, having nothing to do with anything or anybody else. It's just between you and Him!

Religion is the 'man-made' institution which seeks to control & organize people in an effort to do what they feel God's work here on Earth. This is the area where problems are created and the atrocities of history have taken place.

Now, in this context, do you see how the philosophies of both O-Sensei & Christ fit nicely together? Both talking about protecting others, peace & harmony for all people! It's a connection of 'spirituality' and has NOTHING to do with 'religion'!!!!

Just some food for thought!

Brian Vickery
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Old 01-09-2001, 11:00 AM   #13
ian
 
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Hi,
I was very interested in religion and philosophy when I was younger (and still am). Aikido opened me up to Zen philosophy, which tends to be ommitted from many taught philosophy causes (which concentrate on Western philosophy). A central theme of buddhism is that the truth can only be found within yourself. Worth investigating.

Although I would not consider myself a christian, I have a reasonably good knowledge of christianity and its history. I still believe in many things which Jesus is purported to have said, and to me christianity is a very radical and ground breaking religion. Unfortunately, as with many religions, the establishment tries to use religion for its own needs; which is why I think many people still see themselves as spiritual but do not go to church. Even the book of John is supposed to be very corrupted to fit into what he wanted the bible to say. It is worth reading 'The Book of Q' (e-mail me if you want more details) which describes how much of the peripheral rubbish surrounding Jesus' teachings came about, and also tries to develop the core which Jesus may actually have taught.(it is an authoritative account).

It is worth considering that questioning your own beliefs are good and it can lead to one of two things; an abandonment of those beliefs, or a refinement of those beliefs.

Also, are you aware that Ueshiba was involved with a religion heavily influenced by christianity?

Regards,
Ian
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Old 01-09-2001, 12:35 PM   #14
Iwama_Ryu
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Thanks!!

I thank you for not beeing so aggresiv this time. I think i've learned a lot from you guys. I was insecure about this subject and i still am the two new post that came before mine have helped me beacuse they just do it. I've started to think about the spirituality and religon as two new things. You know i'm only 15 and has some time to decide how to live my life.

Johannes Davidsoon 6:kyu
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Old 01-09-2001, 02:11 PM   #15
bones
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First off, let me say that I think the civility with which this thread has proceeded is a credit to the open minds of this little aikido community. When I saw the opening post I too thought it was quite 'dangerous'.

I am not a Christian, though I was brought up as one. It was about that same age (~13-14) I started questioning things and found my own path. I look at christianity like any other religion: as a collection of stories, mythologies, beliefs, and practices interrelated with specific cultures and customs.

It is easy to look at the literal / institutional side of chistianity and its (continuing) history of violence and intolerance and form a very negative view of it. The one thing i cannot tolerate is intolerance. However even as an atheist i recognize the importance of spirituality and cultural practices to the individual and society. I even know 'non-believers' who attend church regularly. I see no harm in the practice of gathering and talking about being nice to each other once a week. For the record I was a practicing Soto Zen Buddhist for a while, which for me was a secular practice of disciplines like sitting meditation, with deep cultural (religous) roots which enhance the feeling of participation and the ultimate value of the experience.

That being said I think there are features of christianity in particular which foster intolerance. I'm no religious scholar, but I would guess this developed as a result of the church becoming a major (and ruthless) socio-political organization in europe. Of course, most christians I know despise this aspect as much as I do, but it is alive and well here in the U.S.. Sen. Leiberman, the DEMOCRATIC V.P. candidate of all things, said "The Constitution guarantees freedom OF religion, not freedom FROM religion". Egads.

Back to the Aikido relationship: I also see no conflict. I know very little about Omotokyo, O-Sensei's major spiritual influence, but I think it offers a broad interpretation which recognizes the spiritual aspects of all things, flowing from some original, all-encompassing source, which can ultimately be compatible with just about any religion. Or I could be way off-base about that. All I know about it I read on the FAQ and whatnot.

-e preston (Zow, sorry about the length)

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Old 01-09-2001, 04:26 PM   #16
Brian
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Quote:
Iwama_Ryu wrote:

It is the christianitys mentality that is bad NOT the religon itself.
To date, what percentage of the Christian population have you personally met? Of that percentage, do you think it is possible to make a fair judgement of the entire Christian mentality?

Making such a judgement would be like making a judgement of the 'Canadian mentality' based upon the few Canadians I have personally met. Or, more accurate in the sense of this analogy, making a judgement on the 'Jewish mentality' based upon the few Jews I have personally met.

As for your suggestion that Christians think themselves better than others... if a Christian did think that, they wouldn't be a very good Christian. I have yet to hear of a Christian sect that teaches that living by their creed makes them a better individual. This would be similar to believing I am a better person than a kareteka because I practice aikido rather than karate. It's just plain goofy. Again, you might have run into a few who think that way, but that is not how they should be thinking, and they can hardly suffice for the rest of the Christian population.
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Old 01-09-2001, 04:59 PM   #17
Nick
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Brian-- hallelujah .

Nick

---
Nick Porter
"Do not fall into the trap of the artisan who boasts twenty years of experience, when in fact he has had only one year of experience-- twenty times."
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Old 01-09-2001, 10:44 PM   #18
giriasis
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Thumbs down It's a good thing

You have begun a spiritual journey and that is fine. It means you are willing to grow as a person. Dissent and Disillusionment is only the beginning. You will grow and discover other ways and other belief systems, and may even start to see the similarities between them all. The key is that it is your journey, and no one else's.

If you have found that Christianity is not compatable with your spirit then it is not. Others have told you how they have found their peace in Chrisitianity, but that is only good for them. Only you know your own heart.

Anne Marie Giri
5th Kyu
Florida Aikikai
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Old 01-10-2001, 04:25 AM   #19
willy_lee
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Johannes,

From my own experience, I would guess that it isn't so much aikido that is in conflict with Christianity, it's the fact that you are _15_, and looking around you and seeing how much is wrong with "Christendom" and "Christians", rather than Xianity itself.
Read Kierkegaard

In other words, you would be doing this soul-searching even if you had never heard of aikido.

Things will never be the same, but they can get better.

=wl
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Old 01-10-2001, 08:37 AM   #20
T'zur
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Smile Aiki-Christianity

I am loving this thread! It is a wonderful thing to walk the halls of other people's minds! Thanks to all!Ian: "It is worth considering that questioning your own beliefs are good and it can lead to one of two things; an abandonment of those beliefs, or a refinement of those beliefs. "

This is entirely true. Again I see a comparison between this and aikido. I am guessing that at least a few of you know of Fumio Toyota Sensei- Founder and Chief instructor of Aikido Assoc. of America. My sensei passed this teaching of Toyota Sensei on: We were doing repeated sword cuts (can't think of or find the Japanese term just now). One wall of our dojo is a mirror and as we faced it (perfect for lining up where the sword needs to cut your uke) we were instructed to think of cutting ourselves. When your body hurts, cut that weakness out. Think of times when you have NOT responded with love 'ai' in the past to others, cut that evil from your life etc... It was a very refreshing experience. Enlightening even.

Think of it.

It seems to me that the main problem that the young man who started this thread is having with Christianity is not so much Christianity, but the attitudes that some of the adults in his life have toward other people. I would ask: is their Christianity REALLY the problem or their attitudes? And are there attitudes a function OF their Christianity?

-Ebiri

- Do not fear for I am with you, do not be dismayed for I am your God, surely I will stregnthen you, surely I will help you, surely I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.- Isa. 41:10
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Old 01-10-2001, 02:55 PM   #21
jxa127
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Circle The sword as a mirror to the soul...

My sempai has mentioned that quote from Toyoda Shihan a number of times. It's a good one to keep in mind because it has meaning at so many levels. On one level, we work to get the kinks out of our technique as we strive for an ideal. On another level, we work to get the kinks out of our soul as we strive for a higher ideal.

For me, that higher ideal is the Christian ideal as I understand it. To me, being a Christian means having the utmost compassion, patience, and love for our fellow humans just like Jesus did when he was on Earth -- everything else is just details. Strangely enough, the ideas of love and compassion were central to O Sensei's outlook on life too. Therefore, I have no difficulty integrating my faith and my spiritual practice of Aikido.

As an aside, I like the fact that with Aikido, I can literally "turn the other cheek" while still performing a powerful technique that leaves my attacker unhurt (when I'm good enough), but no longer a threat.

I have studied Zen, Tao, Confucianism, and even a little Buddhism in addition to my upbringing and studies as a Christian. (In fact, I see a lot of similarities between Jesus and Buddha.) In addition, I consider myself a rational man and a scientist. I've learned a lot from my studies, and continue to learn a lot during my practice of Aikido. The neat thing is that Aikido, while it has a strong spiritual side, leaves a lot of room for one to explore that spirituality in almost any context that we choose. I can identify with Johannes: I, too, have had many moments of doubt in my faith -- still do. Mr. Davidsoon, I have two pieces of advice:

* It is okay to believe in two seemingly contradictory ideas (how can one thing be both itself and its opposite?). There are a lot of mysteries in this life, and there is no rush to know the answer to all of them.

* A painful spiritual journey is a natural part of the quest for enlightenment. Age 15 is not too young an age to begin your quest, just beware that you will probably never end the quest once you've started it.

Thank you, Johannes, for starting this discussion. There is no easy answer to your struggle, but a frank and open discussion (like the one here) can't hurt. :-)

-Drew Ames


[Edited by jxa127 on January 10, 2001 at 01:58pm]
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Old 01-10-2001, 04:23 PM   #22
jin
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Jesus practiced aikido too...

Does anyone recognize this quote?.. "Aikido is the religion that is not a religion; it perfects and completes all religions."

Iwama_Ryu
I grew up around a religious family and at around age 15 I felt the same way about religion as you perhaps do.

During my childhood, I was phisicaly forced to attend church on a regular basis. I was put under a load of guilt from my family and church members. I had no real reason to become a better person except to avoid God's wrath. This was not a fun way to live. I started to seriously hate the church (and all forms of christianity)and God and Jesus and anything that had to do with religion in general. I became a serious problem for my parents and my family.

The christian religion didn't answer anything for me at all. There were no real concrete explanations on why we exsist, what God really is, where did the universe come from, and how did those guys in the Bible do all those miracles. The only answer they gave me was: we believe because of faith, God is a mighty being, God made the earth in 7 days, Moses was in God's favor (that's why he could part the sea) God made man and the universe.. THE END

Christianity was quite shallow to me. I needed scientific proof of all this. Then I discovered Aikido, and I was overwhelmed by the amount of indepth explanation and physical proof of all the questions I had about life. I came to the conclusion that Jesus was an aikido master. He used the same principles, Aikido is God's way.

I suggest that you don't attend a church. Instead, practice aikido, study aikido (read about it). Empty your mind of all past opinions of religion, because your opinions were formed from negative sources. Just imagine this; What kind of opinion would you have about Aikido if you only saw the sorriest example of an Aikido practitioner and that's it?

Don't force yourself to make a decision about religion, don't let yourself feel like you must make a choice. The answer will float to you. Eventually, you will feel confortable about any decision you make.

Rob
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Old 01-10-2001, 04:43 PM   #23
akiy
 
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Re: Jesus practiced aikido too...

Quote:
jin wrote:
"Aikido is the religion that is not a religion; it perfects and completes all religions."
In my mind, aikido is not a religion.

-- Jun

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Old 01-10-2001, 06:35 PM   #24
DiNalt
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Re: Re: Jesus practiced aikido too...

Quote:
akiy wrote:
Quote:
jin wrote:
"Aikido is the religion that is not a religion; it perfects and completes all religions."
In my mind, aikido is not a religion.

-- Jun
I have noticed that a lot of things in Aikido require literally, faith - in a way, like Indiana Jones stepped into that canyon in the third movie.

I remember that I did my first roll out of faith.
I had do have faith in the fact that my arm will not collapse.
When I gathered enough, I did a roll and it worked.
Of course there were many times when it didn't and I let it collapse because I was afraid and lacking... faith.

Then I hurt my back, shoulders, etc.

kokyu dosa appears to be something also requiring faith. I noticed that the power of your center really kicks in during the middle of the technique, but that first part has to be more or less based on faith, for an amateur like myself.

And now when I'm learning breakfalls, it also requires faith...
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Old 01-10-2001, 08:52 PM   #25
Erik
Location: Bay Area
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 1,200
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Re: Re: Re: Jesus practiced aikido too...

Quote:
DiNalt wrote:
I have noticed that a lot of things in Aikido require literally, faith - in a way, like Indiana Jones stepped into that canyon in the third movie.

I remember that I did my first roll out of faith.
I had do have faith in the fact that my arm will not collapse.
When I gathered enough, I did a roll and it worked.
Of course there were many times when it didn't and I let it collapse because I was afraid and lacking... faith.

Then I hurt my back, shoulders, etc.

kokyu dosa appears to be something also requiring faith. I noticed that the power of your center really kicks in during the middle of the technique, but that first part has to be more or less based on faith, for an amateur like myself.

And now when I'm learning breakfalls, it also requires faith...
I can prove to you that a person can highfall in exactly the time it takes me to hit the ground. I can replicate that process with you. It does require faith but it ain't the same thing.
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