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Old 07-19-2008, 02:10 PM   #1
jennifer paige smith
 
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Violence Under the Pretext of Love

I started this thread so that we could continue the very interesting and cogent conversation that was stimulated in the "Abe Sensei........" thread. I look forward to hearing more from everybody.
Thanks so much,
Jen

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Old 07-19-2008, 02:17 PM   #2
jennifer paige smith
 
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

Just for reference. It kinda started here with Ellis' following post:


I wasn't at Iwama. In fact, I never went. Because when I trained aikido, it was a guarantee that someone like Inagaki would try to cripple you - NOT in a fair fight, but, say, in the middle of a technique and you gave up the pin, and were waiting to tap out, and he would ignore the tap and rip out your shoulder. I'd already had the attempt made at another Iwama affiliate dojo.
This is not combat - nor a fair fight. It's obscene cowardice. And lest someone is offended that I mentioned Inagaki's name, I truly don't care. Saito sensei was quite fine with this, himself. Because it happened over and over again. Right in front of him. A friend of mine, a white belt who happened to be big, went Iwama all starry-eyed, and was crippled for life - he could no longer functionally bend his right arm. That was in Saito Morihiro's class.
My friend, Terry Dobson, worked out with Inagaki during one of Saito Morihiro's trips to Tokyo. Terry told him he had a separated shoulder, so "let's go easy," and Inagaki waited for nikkyo pin, which Terry gave him and Inagaki ripped the pins out of the bone.
As I mentioned earlier, one of the Iwama big-guys tried, in very studied fashion, to tear out my shoulder on shihonage, saying that he just wanted to show me something, moving very slowly, saying, "no need to take a break fall," and then suddenly tried to bridge my arm and tear it up. I was ready - forewarned by Terry - and took the fall, and then we had some - - - discussion.
More recently, Isat at a table at the aiki-expo listening to Saito Hitohiro bragging to others how they used to beat up guys from Honbu when they came to Iwama to train, but, and this is a direct quote, "It was done out of love, to give them a sense of how things should really be done."
You know, everyone made a big deal about the Ueshiba family taking back Iwama after Saito Morihiro's death. "Oh, it's politics." OR, "The Ueshiba family always resented Osensei's special relationship." Well, payback's a bitch, isn't it. This is the place Tokyo guys went to get injured. At the shrine. Yeah, if you were in-house, like some of my friends, things were fine. But, the place was a cesspool of cheap-shot violence.
Aikido is love? Or it's not. Fine. Nice debate. But Janne, who was a force of nature, did not deliberately set out to hurt people. I worked out with him a fair amount. But he would not accept cheap gratuitous attempts to injure or shame him.
I apologize for the rant. But one thing that has always offended me about aikido is that, often, what is used as "evidence" of aikido's real power is not one-on-one face-to-face, fighting, for whatever that's worth, but at least it's clean - but going backall the way back to Osensei and Yukawa in front of the emperor, it is cheap, nasty sucker punching and locking of people who trust you. Aikido is love? I guess, sometimes, it's also domestic violence - and far too many people call that love too.



and then moved on to some other really thoughtful posts.

Best,
jen

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Old 07-19-2008, 02:33 PM   #3
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

I think that there's a lot of rhetoric in Aikido that helps make this kind of thing possible.

As an example, how many times have you heard, "In Aikido, the attacker throws themselves!"

Well if you're taking the ukemi, and you're throwing yourself, and you get hurt, it's not *my* fault (as the nage). Why did you hurt yourself? That's just one example of how a lot of what people *think* Aikido is about, can lead to or at least enable abuse in the dojo.

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Old 07-19-2008, 02:46 PM   #4
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

Quote:
Jennifer Smith wrote: View Post
I started this thread so that we could continue the very interesting and cogent conversation that was stimulated in the "Abe Sensei........" thread. I look forward to hearing more from everybody.
Thanks so much,
Jen
Thanks Jen, I was thinking of doing the same. The thread has definately changed topics and I think this topic deserves it's own space. It's an important thing to consider I think.
I think that in taking the literal sense of this topic, most of us would say it's bad and people shouldn't do it. I have some deep-seeded issues with the cheap shot approach to addressing any situation. Most fights I've seen were predicated in this way and yet somehow those folks seemed to think it proved their "natural" superiority. My ire is rising just thinking about it...it represents more to me than would be appropriate for this forum, let alone this thread. Anyhoo...
I think the idea of tough love in the "Martial Arts" is crucial for the serious student. I think where the line is drawn must be case by case, particularly in an art like Aikido which has such an emphasis on peace and harmony (and how that often gets interpreted), but I think past a certain point the serious student must adopt some degree of severity. This doesn't mean injury. As has been pointed out, injuries weaken the structure's ability to receive and respond to input, and that is a disservice. I think this might be one of the key distinctions between "old-school" aiki and Aikido as most of us understand it. The homonym ai/love to me implies the uttmost concern for our partners, especially those we may personally dislike.
Unfortunately, ego abounds. I've seen it in myself when I've been frustrated with a training partner. When an uke tries to show me how "wrong" I'm moving by countering me every time we touch, eventually I've sought to counter the counter. The tension always seems to increase every time kaeshi occures and I think this is where many of the injuries are likely to occur. I've yet to get injured to to injure anyone, but i can see how easy it would be if one of us didn't simply yield for the sake of moving on.

Last edited by mathewjgano : 07-19-2008 at 02:59 PM.

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Old 07-19-2008, 02:53 PM   #5
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

Quote:
Christian Moses wrote: View Post
I think that there's a lot of rhetoric in Aikido that helps make this kind of thing possible.

As an example, how many times have you heard, "In Aikido, the attacker throws themselves!"

Well if you're taking the ukemi, and you're throwing yourself, and you get hurt, it's not *my* fault (as the nage). Why did you hurt yourself? That's just one example of how a lot of what people *think* Aikido is about, can lead to or at least enable abuse in the dojo.
That's unfortunate...and the exact opposite of what I've been taught...though I've always been at the lower levels of training where I'm not expected to be very good. I've been learning that it is the defender's obligation to protect the attacker as much as possible. So much so that even when training with higher ranked people I'm not familiar with, i get the sense I should work my way up to whatever they can handle (rank being highly subjective).

Last edited by mathewjgano : 07-19-2008 at 02:56 PM.

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Old 07-19-2008, 03:13 PM   #6
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

I fear this kind of thing is more common than it should be. I used to train with someone who was known for, while demonstrating pins, ignore the tap under the guise of "giving uke a good stretch"
The tap should be absolutely sacrosanct. I know much more about how my body is responding to a pin than you, so when I tap you stop, no question. And as is often the case with these types, it was always so much worse when any kind of audience was watching.

It's weird, on my (and pretty much any) BJJ mat, if there was someone who did not respect the tap it simply wouldn't be tolerated. But I saw it in Aikido enough to disturb me. I wonder what's behind it...

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Old 07-19-2008, 03:19 PM   #7
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

Quote:
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I fear this kind of thing is more common than it should be. I used to train with someone who was known for, while demonstrating pins, ignore the tap under the guise of "giving uke a good stretch"
The tap should be absolutely sacrosanct. I know much more about how my body is responding to a pin than you, so when I tap you stop, no question. And as is often the case with these types, it was always so much worse when any kind of audience was watching.

It's weird, on my (and pretty much any) BJJ mat, if there was someone who did not respect the tap it simply wouldn't be tolerated. But I saw it in Aikido enough to disturb me. I wonder what's behind it...
I wonder if the tap is more of a goal in BJJ than in Aikido. "Tap or snap" is one of the cliches I've seen on more than a few shirts and bumperstickers. Personally I love osaewaza for those stretches. I've almost felt obscene with how good they can feel and with that in mind I think it's a shame that some (many or most?) have a different sense of them.

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Old 07-19-2008, 04:12 PM   #8
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

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I wonder what's behind it...
Pride. And then, behind that: Fear (the opposite of Love, mind you). All Ego-attachment: the opposite of becoming One with the Universe.

Loved the post by Ellis - thanks for spreading the word. The other thing about it being a form of domestic violence is that like DV, the disorder is spread down, from generation to generation - from victim to victim. Can't be a warrior and a victim at the same time - my opinion. Hence, these are not warrior traditions - my conclusion.

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Old 07-19-2008, 05:50 PM   #9
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

Quote:
Michael Fooks wrote: View Post
I fear this kind of thing is more common than it should be. I used to train with someone who was known for, while demonstrating pins, ignore the tap under the guise of "giving uke a good stretch"
The tap should be absolutely sacrosanct. I know much more about how my body is responding to a pin than you, so when I tap you stop, no question. And as is often the case with these types, it was always so much worse when any kind of audience was watching.

It's weird, on my (and pretty much any) BJJ mat, if there was someone who did not respect the tap it simply wouldn't be tolerated. But I saw it in Aikido enough to disturb me. I wonder what's behind it...
I have sure seen allot of this kind of BS over the years what is behind it is simple... Giant Bloated EGO's in whose "expertise in badassery" would never survive a beat down outside of the Dojo.

When I encounter someone like this my technique to bring it to thier attention is simple... Endure being their Uke and pray they are stupid enough to think they have gotten away with it. I had a senior Yudansha pull that crap on me once because I am a big guy and he thought with my background he could be a little rough with me so he did Kotegashi will all his might and put me on my head and then proceeded to pin me hard to the mat. Since he was a smaller guy and his "mad skillz" did not jell with my Irish Temper; it was hard for him to control the pin. I simply took the opening he gave me and lifted him up, rolled into, and side mounted him. He looked like a deer caught in the headlights. I left the seminar... and a few years later he moved to another country. I heard he was much nicer to his students.

There is no such thing in Aikido as violence under the pretext of love That is the illusion of a few folks sick with Blackbelt disease.

Makes me "angry" to think that There are some A-holes out there abusing folks behind that pseudo-pretext.

William Hazen

On a side note Ellis is a Very Tall guy and I have found that big or tall guys suffer from the illusions of others that because they are big they can take allot more physical abuse because if it works on them it will work on anybody. Sadly for them we both get to take turns and 99% of the time they take my gentle suggestion that I too can suffer pain.

Last edited by Aikibu : 07-19-2008 at 05:59 PM.
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Old 07-19-2008, 05:51 PM   #10
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

Quote:
Matthew Gano wrote: View Post
Personally I love osaewaza for those stretches. I've almost felt obscene with how good they can feel and with that in mind I think it's a shame that some (many or most?) have a different sense of them.
nothing wrong with that - you're right they can be a good stretch - but you are the one that should be choosing that, not guy that's decided he knows better than you how your body is coping.

It's all about consent. To me there is nothing more despicable than willingly offering up your body to someone so they can train and to have them abuse that trust.

"When your only tool is a hammer every problem starts to look like a nail"
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Old 07-19-2008, 06:01 PM   #11
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

Quote:
Michael Fooks wrote: View Post
nothing wrong with that - you're right they can be a good stretch - but you are the one that should be choosing that, not guy that's decided he knows better than you how your body is coping.

It's all about consent. To me there is nothing more despicable than willingly offering up your body to someone so they can train and to have them abuse that trust.
You said it perfectly...Amen

William Hazen
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Old 07-19-2008, 06:13 PM   #12
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

Quote:
Michael Fooks wrote: View Post
nothing wrong with that - you're right they can be a good stretch - but you are the one that should be choosing that, not guy that's decided he knows better than you how your body is coping.

It's all about consent. To me there is nothing more despicable than willingly offering up your body to someone so they can train and to have them abuse that trust.
Well stated! I agree 100%!

"The mind is everything. What you think you become." - Siddhattha Gotama Buddha
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Old 07-19-2008, 06:37 PM   #13
Mark Uttech
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

Onegaishimasu. Physical abuse is physical abuse. It is where the students and teacher wannabes are separated from the actual guides/teachers. Physical abuse is the reason many come to the dojo. The dojo itself should be a refuge, a place where people can learn and work with another way, the way around the problem.

In gassho,

Mark

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Old 07-19-2008, 09:12 PM   #14
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

Quote:
Mark Uttech wrote: View Post
Onegaishimasu. Physical abuse is physical abuse. It is where the students and teacher wannabes are separated from the actual guides/teachers. Physical abuse is the reason many come to the dojo. The dojo itself should be a refuge, a place where people can learn and work with another way, the way around the problem.

In gassho,

Mark
This is an excellent point! We should always bear in mind there is a good chance the person we are training with started training because they have in some way been bullied in their lives. The last thinkg they want to run into is another bully...

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Old 07-19-2008, 10:29 PM   #15
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

I was told this story once in front a little cafe by a tender old Chinese man sitting sipping tea, he was a regular and I worked there- gee twenty some years ago. After good old fashion chit chat for a few minutes on my brake he was nice enough to tell me this story about three son's. I will keep it short.

A father who he trained his son's in martial arts tested them, he sent each of the three son's on errands into town. Each son left the house obediently into town. Not known by each son when they arrived the father would hide waiting behind the door with large stick for each son to arrive home.

The youngest arrived first, eager to have fulfilled the errands and full of energy past the gate and robustly he entered the house and was hit unsuspectingly on the head by the father with the stick from behind the door.

The middle son arrived home he past the gate and came to the door he paused vaguely sensing something was wrong opened the door slowly and careful crossed the threshold and blocked the fathers strick from striking him on the head.

Then finally the oldest son arrived home. He approached the gate but didn't pass through it, instead he walked around to the back door of the house and entered through it. The father was surprised at the son's cleverness as he still stood behind the front door with the stick over his head.

This story for me has a tremendous amount of meanings and applications. But here applying to this thread says allot about experience. We all run into bullies, and egomanics whose insecurities are proportional and feel the need to conquer others physically. If you have experienced bullies enough in your life like me you can read them a mild away and avoid them. But not everyone has that skill.

Another meaning it has is that bully dojos are very close to a level of real fighting in this day and age. Lots of people speak of MMA as the true test, but that isn't really so. MMA is one level and type of conflict, and it has rules, and refers, and judges, your matched with similar fighting styles and weight, and you have a short shelf life to compete. It is a contest, it is entertainment. But it is still rough in there. If you can stop bullies in your art and prevent injury you understand your art. If you feel it necessary to take the art that far. I don't. I am fine with practicing it for the beauty of it, as a hobby. Cause you know in this day and age under those circumstances if we are entrapped by bullies hiding behind Aikido and find ourselves purposely injured, we can sue. No love loss on that, or love required. The pen is mightier then the sword, or sucker Aikido.

Last edited by Buck : 07-19-2008 at 10:39 PM.
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Old 07-19-2008, 11:31 PM   #16
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

What does it really make a person if they sucker punch, blind side, or take advantage of someone from another dojo? When such things happen in Aikido we wonder about O'Senesi talking about love. Ambiguous and vague, the idea of love in Aikido, first of all is in the Japanese language and an idea in O'Sensei's head. It is not well explained. We are to guess is love used globally, remotely, generally and what is love? Is love as O'Senesi thinking a love for mankind, for one another if so how? On the other hand is love intended to be used on a micro scale infused to Budo? Are we fated to experience the idea of love as another typical Japanese paradox to wrestle? Honestly when I read O'Sensei it is difficult to comprehend what he is saying without referencing it in a familiar context. The context of my own society and language and philosophy.

Another thing, a friend of mine who did Judo talked about the Judo idea of mutual benefit between Judoka when training. Mutual benefit is clearly defined and laid out. Plus, Judo having competition to test a person's abilities helps promote that idea of mutual benefit in the dojo and across to other dojos. In contrast, Aikido having the idea of love that isn't really clear on how it is to be applied like Judo's idea o of mutual benefit and Aikido not having competition, ends up forcing Aikidoka to act so malicious toward others. Let's not forget

Or is this what is meant by love, a process of brutality that was justified by those doling it out as love- brutal hazing and rentlessly upon other for the sake of improving them? In order to prepare them for a real fight, on any level, they may face? A segregate proving ground for mental toughness and perfection needed in a real fight? Or is it really more about disipline being love. Ugggggg, what a headache for me, that ugly paradox raises it's ugly head.

In other martial arts, if people want to prove something they can settle it in a competition. Besides competition is in the raw nature of humans and promoted by humans. It would go to reason then a martial art should have a competition outlet in times of peace as an outlet for that fighting competition which would otherwise end up with students hurting each other in the dojo to prove something. Usually whose gi stinks worse then the others in the dojo.

I am not sure about O'Sensei's idea of love, I don't think it applies to Budo, I would hope not, if so then we all should have many broken bones and injuries. I think it applies globally to the world and it's wars, for example. I think the issue really isn't about understanding love, but understanding budo.

Last edited by Buck : 07-19-2008 at 11:38 PM.
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Old 07-19-2008, 11:38 PM   #17
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

Not much to say except what that story described is just wrong in my opinion...period. It shows a level of inhumanity as well as lack of any type of evolvement - I would think even apes treat each other better.

Its one thing to have 'rough' training, but its another to trick someone and then try to maim them.

Yes, to each their own...and they can keep this 'own' to themselves.

Peace

dAlen

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Old 07-20-2008, 12:29 AM   #18
Charles Hill
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

There is a fundamental tenet is Japanese society that suffering leads to self development. This often comes out that those in teaching positions set up difficult situations for their students. In many situations this becomes abuse. Survive it, and the individual becomes proud of the experience. One can either call it abuse and admit that they were victims, or one can deny this and then must "pass it down" to those beneath them.

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Old 07-20-2008, 02:17 AM   #19
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

Just a few quick and scattered comments. My apologies if the points have been covered.

I think I can only speak of my own errors with any authority, so, here are some:

If I am demonstrating a technique and either (a) I am not fully "present" and sensitive to what I'm doing or (b) I am so focused on my own role as nage that I lose uke for a bit, my body will go on autopilot and will not stop until it's completed the technique in some final pin position. Uke may start tapping before that point though, but I can be so completely engaged that I do not hear it. It is not malicious, but it is an error. It's a good opportunity for practice in awareness and connection.

I have a teenaged student whose ukemi is advancing very well. Naturally, when there's a somewhat complex technique to be shown, the instructor will gravitate toward the skilled ukes so as to provide a model demonstration. One time moving through several throws in succession, the student was on the edge of tears. I stopped immediately and asked if he was alright. He was, but he said it was a bit too much too fast. He endured to please me or not to look weak---who knows. I sat everyone down for an on-the-spot lecture about how I was wrong for pushing too hard, and about how everyone is responsible for his/her own body; do not do anything that hurts, and do not allow anyone to hurt you, whether it is a fellow student or the instructor himself. It was valuable for everyone, including me.

Particularly with a newer student, tapping may seem to start prematurely. An advanced person applying the pin knows that uke is in pain, and may also know why: In a bit of panic, uke tenses up and begins to resist. If instructing, I might have whispered to uke careful instructions about how to relax and to allow the pin to continue to a good finish---sometimes a "good stretch." If the whispering wasn't heard, there could easily have been a misunderstanding that I was ignoring the tap. I'm now much more clear, making sure that everyone hears the instruction.

Regarding the different styles, at different seminars I have heard different styles teachers' mocking other styles. Fortunately, I've not seen anyone trying to make an example of anyone else from a different style... What's sad from my view is that each of these instructors at best could teach his own style's variations of techniques, but not aikido itself. Worse, if they weren't careful, their students would carry their attitudes forward.

Oh well---lessons learned!

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Old 07-20-2008, 03:57 AM   #20
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Competing minds

Ellis Amdur wrote:
But Janne, who was a force of nature, did not deliberately set out to hurt people. I worked out with him a fair amount. But he would not accept cheap gratuitous attempts to injure or shame him.

Janne Hermansson is an old friend of mine, and we have trained together many times. It is always a treat, because he is a fountain of aikido knowledge, and a very fine man.
He is quite the opposite of the pennalism and sadism sadly going on here and there in aikido.

I think that many of the brutal ones have competing minds, as suggested by Buck in a post above. There is no competition in aikido, but some aikido students and instructors certainly compete, nonetheless.
In competing martial arts you don't see this as much, since everybody gets a chance to do that stuff on regular competition.
We should really stand above competing, but that's easy to say. I am sure that those who have the least self-confidence do it the most. Janne never does.

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Old 07-20-2008, 10:25 AM   #21
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

Stefan said it well by saying, "pennalism and sadism sadly going on here and there in aikido." That is what I see happening too in Aikido. And Ellis story points it out. Therefore, then, "Violence Under the Pretext of Love." Is misleading, and of course not on purpose. But the word love points out something, a perspective that people naturally, keying us into a non-conflict feeling or state of mind when we hear the word love.

Love is a broad term, and in many languages has one or more meanings and has many different uses and context. Generally, in basic terms, love represents a human act or emotion toward others that does no harm, and is the opposite of violence. It represents as well a bonding between people that rises from being peaceful or helpful toward one another.

Aikido is love, not to have a budo mentality of competition or fighting, to have a spirit of protection of all being in the universe and we are to make this great love the universe of our heart, as we are told. Like I said before, vague and ambiguous difficult to define, and seems be about Budo, then love its self. Here we have an idea of love in Aikido that is difficult to understand and how it applies.

Budo is violence, and Aikido is budo; O'sensei's style of budo, what it should be and how it should be practiced. O'sensei's Doka talks about violence and competition-winning over an ambiguous or an opponent. Possibly the opponent is a person's self, and embedded code to doing technique. But yet, O'Sensei tells us we should not be competitive, I think it has to do with diluting his style of Budo; lessons not to be learned best that way.

Love (not clearly defined or how it is to be applied) fused in with the contradicting philosophy of Budo, which I think O'Sensei was trying to marry together in a working relationship. Which is a big loop hole for personal interpretation or an opportunity for chucking the whole thing out the window, and using the waza as they please? Resulting in an opportunity for “pennalism” and sadism to ripen.

Where is the line then for practicing technique drawn, how far is far enough, and when is it not enough? How do you practice with love, how much is too much love where the technique is simply a waltz to when is a technique too much old school budo- a competition of who bleeds first is defeated. I think that was an issue that O'Sensei was trying to balance out and the scale. Like a chemist he was trying to weighing out equally love, harmony etc. with Budo. And a very difficult task to blend these elements in the right proportions. Even more difficult task for those to follow his chemistry.

I think these elements he tried to combine equally are volatile, difficult to manage. Because of the nature of what O’Sensei was trying to do with love and Budo it was like sticking your fingers into holes in a dam and running out of fingers in relation to the holes.

I don’t think love and violence here as presented in the topic is accurate in the realm of Aikido. Aikido is violent, it is Budo. I don’t think O’Sensei eliminated violence. Rather he was trying like a wild horse to tame it. To domesticate it for utilization that was best or fit modern society. I think he want people to control their violent side and tempers and use constraint and control, instead of it erupting like a volcano or manipulated for sadistic purposes.

So you have two kinds of people in Aikido, those who get it and those who don’t. Like all religions there is no guarantee people will follow it earnestly regardless of appearances. This in my book is the real issue here. We can criticize those who we feel don’t follow the ideals of Aikido and say they don’t get. But we have to understand Aikido is violent but it is the degree of controlled violence without injuring each other, and having even tempers, friendship and goodwill during and after practice no matter what Aikido dojo you are from. But when this doesn’t happen, and saddism, brutality, cruelity, happens falling back to old school Japanese militarism then it is not Aikido regardless of what people are calling themselves or the sign they hang on the dojo indicating Aikido.

I feel it is helpful if we visit other dojos to investigate it. And if it is a bully dojo then it isn't a real Aikido dojo. They are not doing Aikido, but sadism under the guise of Aikido.
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Old 07-20-2008, 10:50 AM   #22
Chris Parkerson
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

with all do respect,

I simply do not understand, if aikidoka are faced belly down in a prone position while nage places a finishing lock on tbeir elbow, wrist or shoulder, why they would not hike a leg.

Give Mage your arm but hike your leg. Comiant yet pote tially in a position to reclaim what you have offered in practice.

Love means truly respecting both yourself and nage.
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Old 07-20-2008, 11:15 AM   #23
John Matsushima
 
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

Quote:
Christian Moses wrote: View Post
I think that there's a lot of rhetoric in Aikido that helps make this kind of thing possible.

As an example, how many times have you heard, "In Aikido, the attacker throws themselves!"

Well if you're taking the ukemi, and you're throwing yourself, and you get hurt, it's not *my* fault (as the nage). Why did you hurt yourself? That's just one example of how a lot of what people *think* Aikido is about, can lead to or at least enable abuse in the dojo.
I agree that is one way that people justify themselves in allowing uke to be hurt, nonetheless, I also agree with that little bit of rhetoric.

Take a sankyo pin for example. In my experience, once I get the pin in place, when uke resists and tries to rise up, he applies pain to himself. The problem comes with some people who don't like to be pinned, or think that there is someway to get out of it and continue to resist to the point that I know if I just sit here and hold them in the lock, they will break their own arm. I think this is where love and compassion comes into play. I know that I have to either let him go or readjust to prevent the uke from injuring himself. I think that in many techniques, the opportunity for pain and injury is created by the uke himself (not always, especially in the story told in this thread); HOWEVER, it is my responsibility to protect the uke from hurting himself.

I wonder, has any of the jerks that we speak of suffered any consequences from their actions?

-John Matsushima

My blog on Japanese culture
http://onecorneroftheplanetinjapan.blogspot.jp/
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Old 07-20-2008, 12:21 PM   #24
bkedelen
 
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

Exactly what consequences? How does one deal with such bullies, especially when you know others are bullied but you yourself are not. There is a guy around here who popped one of the gentlest people I know in the face and gave her a huge black eye. I'm sure he thinks he was showing her that she was open, but the accumulation of similar events surrounding this guy proves that in fact he is just a bully. I thought for a long time about what I could do, about what I would do if it happened to me, and about what I would do if that happened in my dojo. A lot of thought has been put into this, but I have never come up with any good answers.

Last edited by bkedelen : 07-20-2008 at 12:24 PM.
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Old 07-20-2008, 12:24 PM   #25
mathewjgano
 
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Re: Violence Under the Pretext of Love

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Michael Fooks wrote: View Post
nothing wrong with that - you're right they can be a good stretch - but you are the one that should be choosing that, not guy that's decided he knows better than you how your body is coping.

It's all about consent. To me there is nothing more despicable than willingly offering up your body to someone so they can train and to have them abuse that trust.
Absolutely. I've had students in the children's class I used to teach who would tap well before I knew they "should," but I would still let up and ask them to make sure they tap when they feel they couldn't get up. I think it's important to address the psychology of our students as much as the physiology and to me that means respecting the individual's boundaries of comfort.

Gambarimashyo!
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