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Old 12-14-2008, 09:54 AM   #1
John Matsushima
 
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Morihei Ueshiba's Words: Earlier vs. Later

Almost everyone looks to the teaching of o sensei for guidance in their practice of Aikido. However some focus more on things he said at specific times in his life; for example, his pre-war teachings vs. his post-war teachings. My question is, when studying any person's genius, doesn't it make more sense that whatever that person said last holds to be the culmination of his whole life's experience, study, and practice? Why would anyone go back x number of years in one person's life and say, THIS is his true art, and discount everything after that? I mean when I think of my own practice of Aikido, I certainly don't think that I was better off when I was younger. Doesn't wisdom grow with age? Has this sort of thing been done with any other great genius in history?

Last edited by John Matsushima : 12-14-2008 at 09:56 AM. Reason: my wisdom and experience has yet taught me how to use spell check

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Old 12-14-2008, 10:31 AM   #2
Demetrio Cereijo
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Re: Morihei Ueshiba's Words: Earlier vs. Later

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John Matsushima wrote: View Post
Doesn't wisdom grow with age?
Usually, but sometimes senility also appears with age. Imagine for a moment this can be the case.

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Old 12-14-2008, 04:16 PM   #3
Peter Goldsbury
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Re: Morihei Ueshiba's Words: Earlier vs. Later

I am familiar with the written output of three 'geniuses', in addition to those of Morihei Ueshiba.

With Plato and Aristotle, the problem is to date the writings with some precision. With Plato it is fairly clear that he had an early, middle and late period, but the point at which he veered off into Forms as Numbers (aetiological mathematics) is the point when his disciple Aristotle decided to break away and become independent. With Aristotle, too, it is possible to isolate early and late works, but tracing an evolution of his thought is difficult and highly controversial.

There is little controversy about Samuel Clemens (aka Mark Twain). He left voluminous diaries and we have manuscripts which he later edited and reedited. So we know fairly well what he read, when he read it, what he wrote and when he wrote it.

This is simply not possible with Morihei Ueshiba. For a start, he himself never published anything. He gave lectures and discourses, but these were published by others. So it is not clear when much of what has come down as 'written by M Ueshiba' was actually delivered. The war is a convenient watershed because it marks major changes in his life. However, the only way of tracing any development is to go through the individual issues of the Aikido Shimbun and look at the raw data of what actually appeared. Apart from the Takemusu Aiki volume (the provenance of which is made very clear by the editor Hideo Takahashi), this is all we have.

Best wishes,

Quote:
John Matsushima wrote: View Post
Almost everyone looks to the teaching of o sensei for guidance in their practice of Aikido. However some focus more on things he said at specific times in his life; for example, his pre-war teachings vs. his post-war teachings. My question is, when studying any person's genius, doesn't it make more sense that whatever that person said last holds to be the culmination of his whole life's experience, study, and practice? Why would anyone go back x number of years in one person's life and say, THIS is his true art, and discount everything after that? I mean when I think of my own practice of Aikido, I certainly don't think that I was better off when I was younger. Doesn't wisdom grow with age? Has this sort of thing been done with any other great genius in history?

P A Goldsbury
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Old 12-14-2008, 04:43 PM   #4
C. David Henderson
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Re: Morihei Ueshiba's Words: Earlier vs. Later

Quote:
Demetrio Cereijo wrote: View Post
Usually, but sometimes senility also appears with age.
Yeah, who is that old guy staring at me in the mirror, anyway.
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Old 12-14-2008, 06:31 PM   #5
GeneC
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Re: Morihei Ueshiba's Words: Earlier vs. Later

From what I can extrapolate, Osensei had 'followers'( uchi-desi) that lived/trained with him thru-out his life, but at different times of his life, so they learned what he was doing at the time ( altho he went on to evolve Aikido, (as he got beat in competition)they believed what they learned was the "true Way" , so they stuck with that and taught their own students, who in turn went on to have their own dojos and taught the same to their own students, etc all in respect to their Sensei. Now that's not to say each transfer included some personal 'tweaking' that changed it slightly, but it was still close enough to the original.

Last edited by GeneC : 12-14-2008 at 06:46 PM.

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Old 12-14-2008, 07:04 PM   #6
Buck
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Re: Morihei Ueshiba's Words: Earlier vs. Later

Quote:
Clarence Couch wrote: View Post
From what I can extrapolate, Osensei had 'followers'( uchi-desi) that lived/trained with him thru-out his life, but at different times of his life, so they learned what he was doing at the time ( altho he went on to evolve Aikido, (as he got beat in competition)they believed what they learned was the "true Way" , so they stuck with that and taught their own students, who in turn went on to have their own dojos and taught the same to their own students, etc all in respect to their Sensei. Now that's not to say each transfer included some personal 'tweaking' that changed it slightly, but it was still close enough to the original.
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Old 12-14-2008, 07:47 PM   #7
C. David Henderson
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Re: Morihei Ueshiba's Words: Earlier vs. Later

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Philip Burgess wrote: View Post
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