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Old 05-20-2007, 12:30 AM   #1
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Poll: Would you consider aikido without a spiritual practice component to still be aikido?

AikiWeb Poll for the week of May 20, 2007:

Would you consider aikido without a spiritual practice component to still be aikido?
  • I don't do aikido
  • Yes
  • No
Here are the current results.
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Old 05-20-2007, 04:30 AM   #2
SeiserL
 
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Re: Poll: Would you consider aikido without a spiritual practice component to still b

Yes. Sequentially, IMHO the practice usually leads to some spiritual (not religious) awakening or understanding, but it seldom starts out that way. Its still Aikido in the beginning and its still Aikido in the end. We are the ones who change.

Lynn Seiser PhD
Yondan Aikido & FMA/JKD
We do not rise to the level of our expectations, but fall to the level of our training. Train well. KWATZ!
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Old 05-20-2007, 06:54 AM   #3
Mary Eastland
 
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Re: Poll: Would you consider aikido without a spiritual practice component to still b

Yes. for me there is no separation. Like Lynn said it did not start out that way...I had no clue. As I trained the process happened and is happening within me.
Mary
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Old 05-20-2007, 05:56 PM   #4
Lorien Lowe
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Re: Poll: Would you consider aikido without a spiritual practice component to still b

Lynn is right about practice leading to some sort of spirituality - at least it should. Spirituality, though, is such a personal, individual thing that trying to 'teach' it, or formally incorporate it into class, is probably futile at best for the majority of students.
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Old 05-20-2007, 09:25 PM   #5
CNYMike
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Re: Poll: Would you consider aikido without a spiritual practice component to still b

Quote:
Lynn Seiser wrote: View Post
Yes. Sequentially, IMHO the practice usually leads to some spiritual (not religious) awakening or understanding, but it seldom starts out that way. Its still Aikido in the beginning and its still Aikido in the end. We are the ones who change.
I voted "No," but it probably is in shades of meaning. If the spiritual component is what really distinguishes Aikido from everything else, then ignoring it is not a good idea! But I also understand how the spirituality is built into the art and the "flavor" of the techniques, not something you read and think about while you beat someone up.

So I guess my "no" vote isn't so much disagreement as another perspective.
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Old 05-20-2007, 09:44 PM   #6
senshincenter
 
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Re: Poll: Would you consider aikido without a spiritual practice component to still b

I would say no. As to us not coming to the art that way, I wouldn't say we are doing Aikido, just that we are trying to figure out how to do it - we are getting ready to learn it, to practice it, but we are not doing it yet. My opinion,
dmv

David M. Valadez
Visit our web site for articles and videos. Senshin Center - A Place for Traditional Martial Arts in Santa Barbara.
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Old 05-21-2007, 05:37 AM   #7
aikishrine
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Re: Poll: Would you consider aikido without a spiritual practice component to still b

I believe that it is totaly possible to train in Aikido for strictly the spiritual aspect of the art. As a matter of fact that is why i came to Aikido. I am a big guy and i have been in many fights as a youngster, and i was always affraid of hurting someone as well as getting hurt myself, thats why i looked for something to calm myself and defeat my inner self(demons) rather than defeat others, and to try to control my aggression as well as be able to control others in a safe way if the situation arose. I am glad to say that i have not been in a fight for several years now, probably 10 or so.

So i looked for an art, i searched and i searched, but all i found was assembly line black belt schools that taught nothing but aggression and strike first. Then one day when i was going between karate dojos, i happened to drive by an Aikido dojo,it was tucked back on a lot that was once a loading dock. Very hard to see, somehow i found it. I walked into the dojo and before i even stepped halfway in i knew that this was the place for me, the way the door was situated you couldnt even see the matt or anyone in the place, it was just an incredible feeling that was totaly spiritual. As it turned out the Sensei was from Burma and a devout Muslim, he has never promoted his religion, but you can feel his spirituality, and a very commanding presence. He has the perfect mix of martial and spiritual aspects of his training.

So you see for me Aikido is a spiritual art first and foremost.

"he who conquers himself is the greatest warrior of all"
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Old 05-21-2007, 02:05 PM   #8
mathewjgano
 
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Re: Poll: Would you consider aikido without a spiritual practice component to still b

One can be a "strong" atheist, cultivate personal character along with personal power, and still practice Aikido. I do think that if one is talking about Aikido in its most general sense, one must include some sense of self-refinement with regard to one's own personality. I think pure taijutsu isn't the Aikido of Osensei; it must include some sense of that proverbial polishing of the mirror...otherwise I'd call it Aikido-like, or of a different tradition than that of Osensei.

Gambarimashyo!
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Old 05-21-2007, 04:01 PM   #9
James Davis
 
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Re: Poll: Would you consider aikido without a spiritual practice component to still b

I voted yes. When I teach, I don't implement much ceremony. I do tell my students what I know about what spiritual and religious things O'sensei did in his dojo, but I don't do the same things.

Aikido helped to turn me into a person that was worth marrying. Aikido has helped a friend of mine to calm down after years of military and "hard style" training. Aikido has brought me into contact with people that I might have never known, and cultivated our friendship.



?

Yeah, I think that describes my experiences pretty well.

"The only difference between Congress and drunken sailors is that drunken sailors spend their own money." -Tom Feeney, representative from Florida
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