Welcome to AikiWeb Aikido Information
AikiWeb: The Source for Aikido Information
AikiWeb's principal purpose is to serve the Internet community as a repository and dissemination point for aikido information.

Sections
home
aikido articles
columns

Discussions
forums
aikiblogs

Databases
dojo search
seminars
image gallery
supplies
links directory

Reviews
book reviews
video reviews
dvd reviews
equip. reviews

News
submit
archive

Miscellaneous
newsletter
rss feeds
polls
about

Follow us on



Home > AikiWeb Aikido Forums
Go Back   AikiWeb Aikido Forums > Spiritual

Hello and thank you for visiting AikiWeb, the world's most active online Aikido community! This site is home to over 22,000 aikido practitioners from around the world and covers a wide range of aikido topics including techniques, philosophy, history, humor, beginner issues, the marketplace, and more.

If you wish to join in the discussions or use the other advanced features available, you will need to register first. Registration is absolutely free and takes only a few minutes to complete so sign up today!

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 04-29-2007, 10:17 AM   #1
jennifer paige smith
 
jennifer paige smith's Avatar
Dojo: Confluence Aiki-Dojo / Santa Cruz Sword Club
Location: Santa Cruz
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 1,049
United_States
Offline
Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

open terrain, here. Let's let it fly!

domo, jen
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-29-2007, 02:05 PM   #2
dps
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,169
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

Quote:
Jennifer Smith wrote: View Post
open terrain, here. Let's let it fly!

domo, jen
What do you mean by spiritual?
David
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-29-2007, 02:43 PM   #3
SeiserL
 
SeiserL's Avatar
Dojo: Roswell Budokan, Kyushinkan Dojo, Aikido World Alliance
Location: Roswell, GA USA
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 3,715
United_States
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

IMHO, it can be, but it doesn't have to be. We each put our own purpose and intent into our practice (of whatever we do). It is not inherently there.

So, is the question, "Is my/your Aikido a spiritual practice?"?

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!
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-29-2007, 04:42 PM   #4
Chuck Clark
 
Chuck Clark's Avatar
Dojo: Jiyushinkan
Location: Monroe, Washington
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 1,134
United_States
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

Need to define "spiritual" and "practice"... I think if we're human we're involved in spiritual practice of one kind or another whether we want to or realize it. It can take a long, long time ... or not.

Chuck Clark
Jiyushinkai Aikibudo
www.jiyushinkai.org
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-29-2007, 06:29 PM   #5
George S. Ledyard
 
George S. Ledyard's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido Eastside
Location: Bellevue, WA
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 2,639
Online
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

Quote:
Chuck Clark wrote: View Post
Need to define "spiritual" and "practice"... I think if we're human we're involved in spiritual practice of one kind or another whether we want to or realize it. It can take a long, long time ... or not.
Hi Chuck,
Since Body - Mind - Spirit are fundamentally inseparable one could say that any activity must involve the spirit. I think that it's a matter of degree in terms of the amount of commitment made to the "practice". When it gets to the point at which one could consider a practice a "way of life" rather than simply an activity that one does, one is certainly getting to what I would call a "spiritual" practice since the doing of it will necessarily involve change on the part of the person doing it.

I think you are right that "spiritual" needs to be defined, at least each one of us needs to know what he means by it. It's quite a bit like Robert Pirsig in Zen and the Art of Motorcycle maintenance assigning his class to define what is meant by "quality". It became a Koan that eventually drove him crazy because he insisted on trying to come up with an objective definition and it turned out that it was impossible. I would maintain that "spiritual" is another such concept.

As a working definition I would say that "spiritual" pertains to how the person we believe we are relates to the reality it thinks it sees around it. Anything that is a "spiritual" practice is an activity that is designed to change both of those perceptions i.e. who we think we are and what we see as the reality around us. For this to be the case, the person doing the activity must be open to this change or the activity can be empty spiritually even though a certain amount of time and effort have gone into it.

I remember years ago reading a letter to the editor of Black Belt Magazine. The writer stated that he was sick and tired of reading about the spiritual side of the martial arts and that he himself had done martial arts for over twenty years and had no "spiritual" benefit whatever. I thought that represented something of an achievement.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
Aikido Eastside
AikidoDvds.Com
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-29-2007, 08:17 PM   #6
Chuck Clark
 
Chuck Clark's Avatar
Dojo: Jiyushinkan
Location: Monroe, Washington
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 1,134
United_States
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

Hey George,
I think we've visited enough both online and in the flesh (literally in the hot tub) that we have lots in common. I agree with your post above.
After some point, our realization of practice and doing becomes one with no distinctions that separate them.

Chuck Clark
Jiyushinkai Aikibudo
www.jiyushinkai.org
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-29-2007, 10:25 PM   #7
Janet Rosen
  AikiWeb Forums Contributing Member
 
Janet Rosen's Avatar
Location: Left Coast
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 3,939
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

VERY interesting topic given this article in today's SF Chronicle:
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/articl...NG22PBS151.DTL

Personally, yep, aikido has been my spiritual practice and as such it showed me how living is a spiritual practice.

Janet Rosen
http://www.zanshinart.com
"peace will enter when hate is gone"--percy mayfield
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-29-2007, 11:11 PM   #8
dps
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,169
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

Quote:
Janet Rosen wrote: View Post

Personally, yep, aikido has been my spiritual practice and as such it showed me how living is a spiritual practice.
Is it your only spiritual practice?

David
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-30-2007, 12:48 AM   #9
kironin
 
kironin's Avatar
Dojo: Houston Ki Aikido
Location: Houston,TX
Join Date: Aug 2000
Posts: 1,033
United_States
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

Quote:
Chuck Clark wrote: View Post
Hey George,
I think we've visited enough both online and in the flesh (literally in the hot tub) that we have lots in common. I agree with your post above.
After some point, our realization of practice and doing becomes one with no distinctions that separate them.
Okay, what's the deal with Chucks and hot tubs ?

and do we really need this visual ?



after aikido practice,
a foot massage while you are in a hot tub,
that is a spiritual practice.

  Reply With Quote
Old 04-30-2007, 05:43 AM   #10
L. Camejo
 
L. Camejo's Avatar
Dojo: Ontario Martial Arts
Location: Mississauga, Ontario
Join Date: Aug 2001
Posts: 1,423
Canada
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

Quote:
Craig Hocker wrote: View Post
after aikido practice,
a foot massage while you are in a hot tub,
that is a spiritual practice.
Amen to that brother. You just described heaven to me there.

Just goes to show that pretty much anything can become a spiritual practice if ones mind and heart is set in that direction.

LC

--Mushin Mugamae - No Mind No Posture. He who is possessed by nothing possesses everything.--
http://www.tntaikido.org
http://www.mushinkan.ca
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-30-2007, 08:11 AM   #11
barry.clemons
  AikiWeb Forums Contributing Member
Location: Inglewood
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 52
United_States
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

Quote:
Jennifer Smith wrote: View Post
open terrain, here. Let's let it fly!

domo, jen
1. http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/spiritual
2. http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/practice

Yes; Aikido is a spiritual practice for me.
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-30-2007, 09:42 AM   #12
Janet Rosen
  AikiWeb Forums Contributing Member
 
Janet Rosen's Avatar
Location: Left Coast
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 3,939
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

Quote:
David Skaggs wrote: View Post
Is it your only spiritual practice?
David
I have always defined myself as an atheist - my longer discussion of that and how aikido came to be my spiritual practice is in an old Mirror column
http://www.aikiweb.com/columns/themirror/2004_05.html
What I meant by the sentence in this thread, and maybe didn't elaborate on enough, is that it via aikido as a spiritual practice I was able to generalize, to see how daily living (aikido off the mat) was in fact a viable spiritual practice.

Janet Rosen
http://www.zanshinart.com
"peace will enter when hate is gone"--percy mayfield
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-30-2007, 10:57 AM   #13
Dan Reynolds
Dojo: Kyuskinkan
Location: Woodstock Ga
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 4
United_States
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

Quote:
Lynn Seiser wrote: View Post
IMHO, it can be, but it doesn't have to be. We each put our own purpose and intent into our practice (of whatever we do). It is not inherently there.

So, is the question, "Is my/your Aikido a spiritual practice?"?
Spoken like a true Master!

For me the answer would have to be "yes" the study of Aikido is part of my spiritual development .
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-30-2007, 11:35 AM   #14
jennifer paige smith
 
jennifer paige smith's Avatar
Dojo: Confluence Aiki-Dojo / Santa Cruz Sword Club
Location: Santa Cruz
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 1,049
United_States
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

Quote:
Craig Hocker wrote: View Post
Okay, what's the deal with Chucks and hot tubs ?

and do we really need this visual ?



after aikido practice,
a foot massage while you are in a hot tub,
that is a spiritual practice.
Someone above asked me what I define as' spiritual'. I would say this particular post just about covers it.

Beyond the flesh of humor, I would say an 'inveterate occupation with space' would begin to define my sense of the spiritual. The occupation, however, culminates in 'wholeness', or the full circle of generation.
Terry Dobson spoke of Ma-Ai,defined as 'space time' and the beauty that is generated from the place of that observation. The beauty of unveiled vision. To a painter it is colorful. To a musician, it can be rythmic dynamic. To a soundster it is a vibrational sensibility. The road is many fold. Gratefully.

js
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-30-2007, 01:06 PM   #15
Dewey
Location: St. Louis, MO
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 179
United_States
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

Quote:
Jennifer Smith wrote: View Post
open terrain, here. Let's let it fly!

domo, jen
I'm going to throw a wrench into the works and give you my solicited opinion. First, a short biographical note needs to be made here, since we all bring something to Aikido (call it baggage, if you wish).

Either respect me or revile me for it...I am a devout Roman Catholic. So much so, I spent 5 years in the seminary preparing for the priesthood. In the end, I decided that it wasn't for me. However, having spent those years in intense prayer and theological study, owing to the fact that my occupation was to ponder spiritual matters (i.e. navel gaze)...I reflected a great deal on a good many number of subjects. One of which was the martial arts.

I had been fascinated by the martial arts and wanted to study one, but I had trouble reconciling their study with my religious convictions (you know, the whole "nonviolence thing" that Jesus taught and countless saints & theologians expounded upon). That is, until I discovered Aikido.

Aikido is indeed a spiritual practice for me in that I have a medium through which I can confront violence & aggression without succumbing to it or in any way participating in it. By blending, entering, diffusing, neutralizing...I, in the words of St. Francis of Assisi, become "a channel of peace."

How do you like them apples?
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-30-2007, 02:37 PM   #16
dps
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,169
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showth...ad.php?t=10570[url]http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=10524[/url



David

Last edited by dps : 04-30-2007 at 02:45 PM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-30-2007, 02:53 PM   #17
dps
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,169
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

Brian Dewey wrote: "How do you like them apples?"

From a previous post on another thread,

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=10584

"Welcome to the forum Jess,
On this forum you will meet people who will just appreciate that you like apples, some will wonder what kind of apples you like ( Jonathan,Red Delicious, Yellow Delicious, Fuji, etc), why you like the apples you do, what is the technique you use to eat the apples, what is a better way to eat the apples,what is the spirituality of eating apples and where apples came from and how they are not the same as they where. Great fun and exercise for the mind."

David
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-01-2007, 04:36 AM   #18
Chuck.Gordon
Location: Frederick, MD
Join Date: Sep 2000
Posts: 509
United_States
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

Quote:
Craig Hocker wrote: View Post
Okay, what's the deal with Chucks and hot tubs ? and do we really need this visual ?
after aikido practice,
a foot massage while you are in a hot tub,
that is a spiritual practice.
And then, we only got in the hot tub because it was cooler than the ambient outdoor summer temps in Austin! I don't remember the single malt having a THING to do with it.

How's cousin Craig and when are you coming to Europe? Better hurry ... Looks like (75% chance) I'm headed back to the USA about this time next year, if not earlier. Not sure where, but probably East Coast-ish.

As an atheist and skeptic, I have to ask for definitions of spiritual, too, as I don't believe in a 'spirit' as a distinction from emotions and intellect. As an abstraction, it can, of course, refer to intent, will, courage or any number of other intangibles.

It seems, for many, that 'Spiritual' is pretty much equivalent to 'I'm in awe of this and can't rationally explain it.' For me, budo certainly doesn't fall under that heading.

cg

  Reply With Quote
Old 05-01-2007, 08:00 AM   #19
salim
Location: Greensboro North Carolina
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 370
United_States
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

One the most prevailing behaviors that is so distasteful to some many in the Martial Arts community, the spiritual crap. This is one of the main reasons that Aikido is not taken serious. The Aikidoist is look upon as a long haired hippies chanting away, massaging there ego's with intellectual speech. To much attention direct toward the Japanese culture and spiritual stuff. There are many people would who just rather learn self defense.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-01-2007, 08:01 AM   #20
salim
Location: Greensboro North Carolina
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 370
United_States
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

I can't believe this discussion exist!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Very sad.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-01-2007, 08:35 AM   #21
dbotari
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 97
Canada
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

Quote:
Salim Shaw wrote: View Post
I can't believe this discussion exist!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Very sad.
Yet you continue to contribute to it. If it bothers you, step away from the key board, turn-off your computer and go train in your "self-defense" oriented aikido.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-01-2007, 09:52 AM   #22
jennifer paige smith
 
jennifer paige smith's Avatar
Dojo: Confluence Aiki-Dojo / Santa Cruz Sword Club
Location: Santa Cruz
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 1,049
United_States
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

Quote:
Salim Shaw wrote: View Post
One the most prevailing behaviors that is so distasteful to some many in the Martial Arts community, the spiritual crap. This is one of the main reasons that Aikido is not taken serious. The Aikidoist is look upon as a long haired hippies chanting away, massaging there ego's with intellectual speech. To much attention direct toward the Japanese culture and spiritual stuff. There are many people would who just rather learn self defense.
Not everyone who takes Aikido to it's spiritual equation is a chanting hippie. Unless of course you mean that skinny old guy in a skirt, with that long beard who went around, absurdly, claiming that, get this, Aikido is a manifestation of divine will as sent through him in the form of a martial art. What a stoner! Then he went on to continue his ego driven, narcissistic, intellectually snobbish chanting about Izunagi this and Izunami that. What a goon. It is hard to believe that he wasn't simply hauled out back to get his ass kicked by some 'real' martial artist.
God, I'm glad my eyes have been so opened. Until now I was shamelessy following in the footsteps of a stinky hippie who, obviously, couldn't fight his way out of a paper bag.
How could I have missed it?
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-01-2007, 09:58 AM   #23
John Kelly
 
John Kelly's Avatar
Dojo: Kodokan Greensboro
Location: North Carolina
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 8
United_States
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

Quote:
Salim Shaw wrote: View Post
I can't believe this discussion exist!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Very sad.
Thank you for stepping in. I was wondering when a dissenting vote would appear. If aikido has taught me anything, it is to appreciate the energy of others as a way of resolving conflict. Training in Aikido for self defense, I am trying to blend with an aggressors energy and redirect it in a way that brings no harm to either of us, but resolves the conflict without giving ground personally or endangering myself needlessly.

In my opinion, that is a spiritual practice, because I have discovered the use of this training when I am away from the dojo, in everyday life. Understanding others can lead to harmony, even with those I believe I have nothing in common with. It is indeed a spiritual journey that brings you to understand the value of your enemies hearts and minds.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-01-2007, 10:47 AM   #24
John Kelly
 
John Kelly's Avatar
Dojo: Kodokan Greensboro
Location: North Carolina
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 8
United_States
Offline
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

I see. Thank you for clarifying for me. I understand from your first post in this thread that you do not care for the spiritual or japanese cultural aspects that are often associated with Aikido training. I think most people on the board, including me, would grant you that as your right. You train in aikido as a form of self defense only and wish to keep it that way. You implied, also in your first post, that you were annoyed by the way others think your chosen style is for hippies and such. No one likes their chosen style insulted, no one appreciates being told they are wasting their time training in a useless art.

So far, I get it. Where you lost me, and possibly the person who sent you a warning, is your second post where you said you couldn't believe that this discussion existed. Clearly, you were a bit hyped up, but by saying that you are doing exactly what you were complaining of in your first post.

The civil librities you speak of would also apply to those who you disagree with, as in all of those who posted on this thread before you. So by dissing the entire thread, you are insulting everyone here, including those who may be reading it and not posting. Only you know if that was your intent, but please consider what you say here before you submit it. Many could easily take offense by your language, regardless of your intent.

I believe all points of view are worth considering, and did not take offense to your statements. But I did take note of the inherent hypocracy of them, intentional or otherwise. If it were up to me, I would encourage you to post more often, I too find it stiflingly high minded around here sometimes. When that happens to me, I just jump to another thread. It's a big world, and not too hard to find a place that will keep my interest on the internet.

Even us hippies who can defend ourselves are not using Aikido to start fights in person, so why would we do so online?

best of luck,
jk
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-01-2007, 11:01 AM   #25
George S. Ledyard
 
George S. Ledyard's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido Eastside
Location: Bellevue, WA
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 2,639
Online
Re: Is aikido a spiritual practice ?

Troll alert... time to use the ever popular "ignore function". Keep that blood pressure down and your "wa" harmonious.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
Aikido Eastside
AikidoDvds.Com
  Reply With Quote

Please visit our sponsor:

Aikido DVDs and Video Downloads - by George Ledyard Sensei & other great teachers from AikidoDVDS.Com



Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
What exactly is an independent dojo? David Yap General 64 11-14-2011 02:05 PM
sceptic on the spiritual side of aikido Apoy Spiritual 68 10-14-2006 05:09 PM
Without this, No Aikido senshincenter General 105 03-15-2005 10:15 AM
Aikido as a Spiritual Practice akiy Spiritual 3 06-22-2000 01:19 AM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:15 AM.



vBulletin Copyright © 2000-2014 Jelsoft Enterprises Limited
----------
Copyright 1997-2014 AikiWeb and its Authors, All Rights Reserved.
----------
For questions and comments about this website:
Send E-mail
plainlaid-picaresque outchasing-protistan explicantia-altarage seaford-stellionate