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Old 05-24-2007, 10:46 AM   #1
jennifer paige smith
 
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Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

Aikido is a 'pair of ducks' is meant to be a play on 'aikido is a paradox'. On some other threads People have commented on the volume of teachers including sexual tantric references in their lessons. From the sound of the posts, the teachers may have strayed a little in all directions.

Criticisms being:
Misunderstanding of Tantra (web) to begin with. A little too far from aikido.
Lessons not fully developed (sentence frag).

In John Stevens Book, The Philosophy of Aikido, he commits a section to the shingon( book not in front of me) tantric practices and how they relate to aikido. Well, I can dig it. But I don't think it is a fully
developed basis for other lessons. The lessons lose some meat, as it were.

Are we just pairs of horny ducks, are we participating in paradox, or both.

What are your views on Tantric practices and aikido?

Thanks for sharing.

Last edited by jennifer paige smith : 05-24-2007 at 10:51 AM.

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Old 05-24-2007, 06:18 PM   #2
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

Do you mean tantra as transmitted in a direct lineage from Tibet or tantra as taught as a sexual technique by amerikan newagers?

Q
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Old 05-24-2007, 09:47 PM   #3
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

If you don't mind, Jennifer, insert hyper links, or just copy&paste links into your next post in this thread, it would give us a better idea of what you're referring to. I've either never noticed much of that, or never took the posts in question as sincere. So I don't know how to reply any more than the opinion that such a correlation between tantric practices and aikido seems tenuous from the start.

michael

Wouldn't you think a 'slow hand' just means that you're not as interested as you could be?

Kidding!
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Old 05-25-2007, 12:34 AM   #4
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

I think the big question really is what does One White Duck/0 to the power of 10 equal?

Bronson (it's late)

"A pacifist is not really a pacifist if he is unable to make a choice between violence and non-violence. A true pacifist is able to kill or maim in the blink of an eye, but at the moment of impending destruction of the enemy he chooses non-violence."
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Old 05-25-2007, 04:00 AM   #5
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

Quote:
what does One White Duck/0 to the power of 10 equal?
A base canard?

Sorry, I'll get my coat...
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Old 05-25-2007, 05:11 AM   #6
Peter Goldsbury
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

Quote:
Ian Hurst wrote: View Post
A base canard?

Sorry, I'll get my coat...
Hello Ian,

Speaking as a fellow Brit, are you sure that that last sentence will be understood by those who have not seen the TV series.

Actually, it was Morihei Ueshiba himself who mentioned this point when I last met him, which I think is rather nice...

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Old 05-25-2007, 06:04 AM   #7
happysod
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

Puns and bad jokes - never apologise and never explain, gives you a chance to get away with only minor injuries.

Anyway Peter, I'm suprised at you, as an academic I'd have you supporting research through befuddlement - confusing people from every country in the globe has long been a valued tradition of Britain, why we even changed our spelling in the 19th Centrury just to annoy the Americans.
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Old 05-25-2007, 07:18 AM   #8
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

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Puns and bad jokes - never apologise and never explain, gives you a chance to get away with only minor injuries.

Anyway Peter, I'm suprised at you, as an academic I'd have you supporting research through befuddlement - confusing people from every country in the globe has long been a valued tradition of Britain, why we even changed our spelling in the 19th Centrury just to annoy the Americans.
That's okay, because we let loose California speak through all known media -woah, dude, narly,totally,duh, etc. ...on second thought we apologize.

Last edited by guest89893 : 05-25-2007 at 07:19 AM. Reason: spelling
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Old 05-25-2007, 09:08 AM   #9
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

Quote:
Jo Adell wrote: View Post
Do you mean tantra as transmitted in a direct lineage from Tibet or tantra as taught as a sexual technique by amerikan newagers?
Like Dude...Right On! Having experiance in both and done a few shrooms I spoke with O'Sensei about this subject a long while back...

He just laughed and then chased me all over the place trying to tickle me.

I must now prepare for the Showtime Cable's Star War's 30th Anniversary Movie Marathon (all six films back to back!!!) and I was thinking I might put myself in a Tantric trance state in order to truely experiance the force.

Let's hope there's no surf the next few days.

William Hazen*

aka THE Malibu Proto-Tantric Surf Hippie Love Child

* On a serious note... Are we talking about the cultivation of Prana through Tantric Breath with Aikido practice

Last edited by Aikibu : 05-25-2007 at 09:10 AM.
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Old 05-25-2007, 09:16 AM   #10
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

Quote:
Jo Adell wrote: View Post
Do you mean tantra as transmitted in a direct lineage from Tibet or tantra as taught as a sexual technique by amerikan newagers?
I mean has anyone encountered any combination of Aikido and Tantric teachings brought together in one class. I am responding to other posts where people have brought this topic up. I would like to leave the subject as open as possible so that, for example, if a person had heard Tibetan Tantric Methods combined with aiki, or shingon buddhism and aiki etc....they would feel free and included to comment.

As a general practice I would appreciate more care about using labels around peoples beliefs and countries of origin. I know it is generally accepted to bash on 'new agers' but I personally don't like derogatory associatives. That would be my personal preference. Thank You.

Really, any reference to tantric practices in Aikido are welcome in this conversation.
I hope you will post again on this thread. It sounds like you have encountered some material on the subject.

thanks

Last edited by jennifer paige smith : 05-25-2007 at 09:31 AM.

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Old 05-25-2007, 09:23 AM   #11
jennifer paige smith
 
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

Quote:
William Hazen wrote: View Post
Like Dude...Right On! Having experiance in both and done a few shrooms I spoke with O'Sensei about this subject a long while back...

He just laughed and then chased me all over the place trying to tickle me.

I must now prepare for the Showtime Cable's Star War's 30th Anniversary Movie Marathon (all six films back to back!!!) and I was thinking I might put myself in a Tantric trance state in order to truely experiance the force.

Let's hope there's no surf the next few days.

William Hazen*

aka THE Malibu Proto-Tantric Surf Hippie Love Child

* On a serious note... Are we talking about the cultivation of Prana through Tantric Breath with Aikido practice
First of all, New agers don't say dude where I'm from. Surfers say it. Not the same. New agers don't tend to imbibe in mushrooms, they live a little closer to the wheat juice bar. Hippies tend to eat mushrooms.

If you are, in fact, the Malibu proto tantric surf hippie love child, I'd love to meet you. Sounds fun.

The whole thing is fun really.We're just mixing stereotypes faster than a Jamba Juice Smoothie Counter.

Good Humor on the part of all ( all contributors above included ).

Have you done aikido with prana cultivation through tantra as an emphasis?

Jennifer Paige Smith
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Old 05-25-2007, 10:40 AM   #12
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

Bob Nadeau says aikido is like sex.
Enegy Exchange.
But no mention of tantra.
I'd say 95% of all "tantra "practiced in this country is done by newagers,, it was a sincere question and I don't see that asking for clarification is "bashing" in any way.It simply is not Tibetan tantra.
In MY Experience, "tantric practitioners" are into it for the aspects of prolonging their own sexual pleasure, and had very little care or consideration for their partners' experience, which is about as unlike aikido as you can get.

Q
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Old 05-25-2007, 10:51 AM   #13
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

Quote:
Jennifer Smith wrote: View Post
On some other threads People have commented on the volume of teachers including sexual tantric references in their lessons....

In John Stevens Book, The Philosophy of Aikido, he commits a section to the shingon( book not in front of me) tantric practices and how they relate to aikido. ...

What are your views on Tantric practices and aikido?
Not an expert but have done some reading.

As I understand it, sexual practice was only one small--and vigorously repudiated--school (Tachikawa ryu) in Japanese Tantrism.

Tantrism seems to imply a discipline using the imagination to find similarities amongst otherwise disparate phenomena: "I am the universe", e.g. and integrating them through meditation with MANDALA, MANTRA, and MUDRA, or, as the tantra promised, "Mind and body united." Sound familiar?

It was through such esoteric practice that profane practices such as poetry, carpentry, and the martial arts came to be regarded as proper venues for spiritual practice we now call MICHI (DO).

The history I've read seems to point in this direction, anyway. I don't know how much of Osensei's practice or Omoto was tantric. It is safe to say, however, that most of this influence is dying or dead.

Osensei's son, the second Doshu, had little desire to pursue it, much reason to jettison it (GHQ down the block), and most aikidoists seem pretty secular, too.

Don't know of anyone bringing it into their practice except perhaps what Omoto practitioners remain in aikido, and perhaps Kooichi Barrish or Mary Heiny.

Hope this helps.

Don J. Modesto
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Old 05-25-2007, 11:02 AM   #14
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

Without a flaps, zippers, etc. in the hakama, tantric practice while practicing Aikido might be quite difficult. I guess that we could add casual groping to the attacks as a means of adding in some tantric practice.

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Old 05-25-2007, 12:08 PM   #15
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

Quote:
Jo Adell wrote: View Post
Bob Nadeau says aikido is like sex.
Enegy Exchange.
But no mention of tantra.
I'd say 95% of all "tantra "practiced in this country is done by newagers,, it was a sincere question and I don't see that asking for clarification is "bashing" in any way.It simply is not Tibetan tantra.
In MY Experience, "tantric practitioners" are into it for the aspects of prolonging their own sexual pleasure, and had very little care or consideration for their partners' experience, which is about as unlike aikido as you can get.
I take it as sincere question. I simply objected to the description on a level of principle.The generalization was too large, in my mind. Since you mention Bob Nadeau specifically now, I wonder is that the type of person to whom you were referring earlier?I am famiiar with him and I've trained with him, so I know what you mean when you mention his teaching. I've heard him say something similar.
In my experience many people are self-ish within their particular practices and have a high level of disregard for others, even when the tenets of the practice point otherwise. This quality gets more distilled in practice the more based in the body our practices are. Martial arts and sex being two good examples. I think that it is because it is so immediate. Anyone else got an idea about this?

I am not familiar with Tibetan Tantra and I would like to know more. Will you share what you know about that practice?
thanks
jen

P.S.I attempted to edit the comment about the' ism' earlier because I feel it is my responsibility to hear through any objectons I might have; I ran out of time and the web wouldn't allow the edit. I apologize for putting it back on your plate.

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Old 05-25-2007, 12:12 PM   #16
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

Quote:
Don J. Modesto wrote: View Post
Not an expert but have done some reading.

As I understand it, sexual practice was only one small--and vigorously repudiated--school (Tachikawa ryu) in Japanese Tantrism.

Tantrism seems to imply a discipline using the imagination to find similarities amongst otherwise disparate phenomena: "I am the universe", e.g. and integrating them through meditation with MANDALA, MANTRA, and MUDRA, or, as the tantra promised, "Mind and body united." Sound familiar?

It was through such esoteric practice that profane practices such as poetry, carpentry, and the martial arts came to be regarded as proper venues for spiritual practice we now call MICHI (DO).

The history I've read seems to point in this direction, anyway. I don't know how much of Osensei's practice or Omoto was tantric. It is safe to say, however, that most of this influence is dying or dead.

Osensei's son, the second Doshu, had little desire to pursue it, much reason to jettison it (GHQ down the block), and most aikidoists seem pretty secular, too.

Don't know of anyone bringing it into their practice except perhaps what Omoto practitioners remain in aikido, and perhaps Kooichi Barrish or Mary Heiny.

Hope this helps.
Yes it does as it seems to stimulate the conversation as well as provide some more information for discussion.
I hear tantric as not sexual, exclusively.

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Old 05-25-2007, 12:21 PM   #17
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

Do I consider Nadeau Sensei a newager? No. Though I"m sure the more martially oriented aikidoka would think he was.
I don't practice any kind of tantra so I can't give you any information about it, but if I did I would be damn sure that my teacher had a lineage to the Source as traceable as my aikido teachers'.

Q
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Old 05-25-2007, 12:36 PM   #18
Ron Tisdale
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

Quote:
Martial arts and sex being two good examples. I think that it is because it is so immediate. Anyone else got an idea about this?
Nope, none that you want to hear anyway

You can probably guess that this is the kind of conversation that drives me nuts...

Best,
Ron (nothing to see here, move along... )

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Old 05-25-2007, 01:00 PM   #19
Fred Little
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

Quote:
Don J. Modesto wrote: View Post
Not an expert but have done some reading.

As I understand it, sexual practice was only one small--and vigorously repudiated--school (Tachikawa ryu) in Japanese Tantrism.

Tantrism seems to imply a discipline using the imagination to find similarities amongst otherwise disparate phenomena: "I am the universe", e.g. and integrating them through meditation with MANDALA, MANTRA, and MUDRA, or, as the tantra promised, "Mind and body united." Sound familiar?

It was through such esoteric practice that profane practices such as poetry, carpentry, and the martial arts came to be regarded as proper venues for spiritual practice we now call MICHI (DO).

The history I've read seems to point in this direction, anyway. I don't know how much of Osensei's practice or Omoto was tantric. It is safe to say, however, that most of this influence is dying or dead.
Don is largely correct here.

The common feature of tantrism (whether Hindu, Buddhist, or Taoist, in whatever national cultural context) is the use of sacred sound, prescribed body position or movement, and visualization to achieve meditative unity of some sort.

In Japan, all of the forms of Buddhist tantra that involved ritual sexual practice are regarded as heterodox, not orthodox, Buddhist practice.

Some details of the Founder's esoteric practice can be inferred from records of his initiation into Shingon practices prior to the Founder's military deployment in the Russo-Japanese War, photographs of him praying using ritual gestures associated with particular tantric deities, and the kinds of structural parallels Don notes.

The Tibetan tantra which involve mandala or visualizations showing deities united in meditative coital bliss are generally considered part of the uttara or anuuttara class of tantras. This whole class of tantra seems to have arisen in India well after the three classes of tantra practice that were unquestionably transmitted to Japan -- the kriya, carya, and yoga tantra. Extant evidence to the contrary is almost entirely inferential or circumstantial, and is widely rejected by both Buddhist practitioners and academic scholars specializing in the topic.

To the extent that there were cults like the Tachikawa-ryu in Japan, the current consensus is that they were spontaneous local reworkings or reconfigurations of orthodox tantric practices, and as noted above, they are generally viewed as heterodox.

That said, it is also fair to note that Shingon Buddhism in particular -- and Japanese Buddhism more broadly -- has a strong current of "this-worldism" starting with the core doctrine of sokushin jobutsu, which is generally translated as "becoming a buddha in this very body."

In the context of concerns raised by Western practitioners about abuse of students by teachers allegedly promising spiritual benefit through sexual practice, HHDL suggested that the test for a qualified instructor capable of carrying out such practice in a skillful manner was whether he could retain equanimity whether offered a glass of beer or a glass of urine and drink either without distinction. He also suggested that ten to twenty years of practice of the so-called "lower tantras" (i.e. kriya tantra, carya tantra, and yoga tantra) was a necessary prerequisite for actualization of "higher tantra" practices of this kind.

That would make for a pretty short list of qualified teachers even in Tibet or Dharamsala, and an even shorter list in North America.

Conversely, in the past I have arranged for a number of people practicing with me to have the opportunity to receive initiation in the Gachirinkan, or "Full Moon Viewing" meditation, which is a comparatively open foundation practice found in both Shingon and Tendai Buddhism, and have personally found the practice efficacious in a number of respects, some of which are directly relevant to aikido practice.

Hope this helps.

Best,

FL
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Old 05-25-2007, 01:06 PM   #20
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

Now that is what I call a cogent post.

Best,
Ron (Hi Fred!)

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Old 05-25-2007, 02:35 PM   #21
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

Thanks Fred. I like that post a lot.

Q
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Old 05-25-2007, 03:24 PM   #22
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

Quote:
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Don is largely correct here.

The common feature of tantrism (whether Hindu, Buddhist, or Taoist, in whatever national cultural context) is the use of sacred sound, prescribed body position or movement, and visualization to achieve meditative unity of some sort.

In Japan, all of the forms of Buddhist tantra that involved ritual sexual practice are regarded as heterodox, not orthodox, Buddhist practice.

Some details of the Founder's esoteric practice can be inferred from records of his initiation into Shingon practices prior to the Founder's military deployment in the Russo-Japanese War, photographs of him praying using ritual gestures associated with particular tantric deities, and the kinds of structural parallels Don notes.

The Tibetan tantra which involve mandala or visualizations showing deities united in meditative coital bliss are generally considered part of the uttara or anuuttara class of tantras. This whole class of tantra seems to have arisen in India well after the three classes of tantra practice that were unquestionably transmitted to Japan -- the kriya, carya, and yoga tantra. Extant evidence to the contrary is almost entirely inferential or circumstantial, and is widely rejected by both Buddhist practitioners and academic scholars specializing in the topic.

To the extent that there were cults like the Tachikawa-ryu in Japan, the current consensus is that they were spontaneous local reworkings or reconfigurations of orthodox tantric practices, and as noted above, they are generally viewed as heterodox.

That said, it is also fair to note that Shingon Buddhism in particular -- and Japanese Buddhism more broadly -- has a strong current of "this-worldism" starting with the core doctrine of sokushin jobutsu, which is generally translated as "becoming a buddha in this very body."

In the context of concerns raised by Western practitioners about abuse of students by teachers allegedly promising spiritual benefit through sexual practice, HHDL suggested that the test for a qualified instructor capable of carrying out such practice in a skillful manner was whether he could retain equanimity whether offered a glass of beer or a glass of urine and drink either without distinction. He also suggested that ten to twenty years of practice of the so-called "lower tantras" (i.e. kriya tantra, carya tantra, and yoga tantra) was a necessary prerequisite for actualization of "higher tantra" practices of this kind.

That would make for a pretty short list of qualified teachers even in Tibet or Dharamsala, and an even shorter list in North America.

Conversely, in the past I have arranged for a number of people practicing with me to have the opportunity to receive initiation in the Gachirinkan, or "Full Moon Viewing" meditation, which is a comparatively open foundation practice found in both Shingon and Tendai Buddhism, and have personally found the practice efficacious in a number of respects, some of which are directly relevant to aikido practice.

Hope this helps.

Best,

FL
That is a wonderful body of information. Thanks

Jennifer Paige Smith
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Old 05-25-2007, 03:25 PM   #23
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

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Now that is what I call a cogent post.

Best,
Ron (Hi Fred!)
ah, nuts!

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Old 05-25-2007, 04:31 PM   #24
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

Quote:
Jennifer Smith wrote: View Post
First of all, New agers don't say dude where I'm from. Surfers say it. Not the same. New agers don't tend to imbibe in mushrooms, they live a little closer to the wheat juice bar. Hippies tend to eat mushrooms.

If you are, in fact, the Malibu proto tantric surf hippie love child, I'd love to meet you. Sounds fun.

The whole thing is fun really.We're just mixing stereotypes faster than a Jamba Juice Smoothie Counter.

Good Humor on the part of all ( all contributors above included ).

Have you done aikido with prana cultivation through tantra as an emphasis?
Just having fun. Fred Little put it best in terms of "seriousness" ... I am a long time practicioner (20 + years) of Soto Zen through ZCLA and inspired by Charlotte Joko Beck Roshi who while not a rigid "traditionalist" IME She has a solid foundation in Breath Practice (She is a Dharma Heir of Mazumi Roshi after all ) The cultivation of Prana through Aikido with Tantra refers to a seminar I went many years ago where this Groovey Proto Hippie Mushroom eating New Age Couple were trying to mix Aikido with "Pranic breath techniques" as she held herself up to be some kind of Martial Arts Tantric Deity. It was all there...Groovy Mood Music... Nag Champa Smells... Impossibly Tanned Super Blond Tantra Goddess with Groovy Pony Tailed Aikido Lover Sensei Lots of suggestions to open up your powerful Hara Kundalini Chakra with your breath...Oh man those were the days...Malibu... Santa Cruz... and Bolinas...all grooving towards the "source" Living in Malibu I have seen it all LOL Est...Esalen...Course in Miracles...SAI/SHRI BABA X&Y&Z "The Power of Now" Heck we still have a Guru whose acolytes bought him a mansion on top of a hill here. Dude even has his own helicopter pad.

On a side note Jennifer didn't you attend Shoji Nishio Shihan's Friendship Seminar at UC Santa Cruz back in the Summer of 99??? Forgive my memory (To many dings on the noggin from the odd surfboard). If so we may have practiced together.

William Hazen MPTSHLC.Esq

Last edited by Aikibu : 05-25-2007 at 04:36 PM.
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Old 05-25-2007, 05:55 PM   #25
Allen Beebe
Location: Portland, OR
Join Date: Mar 2007
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Re: Aikido is a pair of ducks- tantric practices and aikido

For what it's worth . . .

Japanese Mikkyo, being older than the oldest Koryu, similarly take their practice pretty (OK, very) seriously. While one may have a familial relationship to a Mikkyo lineage and thereby only have a ceremonial/formal association rather than a practical one, those that have entered, and remain active, within a orthodox lineage of Mikkyo as a practitioner tend to be very serious indeed due to the arduous and demanding nature of training.

Does Mikkyo have a relationship to Aikido? For Mikkyo practitioners, Mikkyo has a relationship to everything. Does Aikido have a relationship to Mikkyo? To many Aikido practitioners Aikido has a relationship to everything. YMMV.

To my mind Budo and Mikkyo are one and the same. For me, that is the only way they can work. However, that is just my mind. I've been prejudiced against from both ends, having been accused of being so heavily committed to Budo that it must be that I do not take my Mikkyo practice seriously, while also having it assumed that, being so heavily involved in Buddhism, I couldn't possibly be a serious Budoka. However, Shugyo (whether martial or spiritual) implies obstacles to overcome. I have found that external obstacles are the least of my worries.

I believe that the 13th Dalai Lama said that a practitioner could profitably use the powerful forces of sex to further their Buddhist practice when they could, with equanimity drink a glass of water or urine. And, at that stage of development they'd hardly have need to use those powers anyway. If I remember correctly, with this statement he also implied that he wasn't ready to do so either. Considering the depth of the Dalai Lama's training, the quality of his teachers and the proven sincerity of his practice, the field of individuals that could authentically engage in sexual tantra (the use of sexual energies for the purpose of enlightenment) is rare indeed.

I would humbly suggest that if you run across a person, usually a person of power and authority, suggesting that if you relinquish to them anything of great personal value or worth to you in exchange for filling some personal need, lack or emptiness, proceed with great caution. Our greatest needs are not usually fulfilled from external sources.

I think Budo (Aikido) and Mikkyo both teach this lesson.

(BTW, I am ordained in, and practice, Koyasan Shingon-shu Mikkyo, and was also ordained in an independent lineage of Shingon. My Aikido teacher, Shirata Rinjiro, practiced and taught Hagurozan Yamabushi no Gyo which, while being Shugendo, shares roots in Mikkyo. It was his introduction that prompted me to explore Shingon Mikkyo.)
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