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 > General

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 08-07-2009, 05:55 PM   #651
DH
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 3,394
United_States
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Quote:
Shaun Ravens wrote: View Post
Dan,

I certainly have been thinking about these things for at least the last 17 years. Just has you, Mike and others have been working for years on your efforts to bring about some sort of Aiki revolution with the art,
......I have been working behind the scenes and engaging people with regards to what surely will be known as the spiritual revolution of Aikido should it ever be as successful and firmly take root. However, as I also pointed out, looking back to the Founder's time, no one was really interested it listening to him, so I am not too sure how we may actually define success when it comes to revealing another thing hidden in plain sight...
Hello Shaun
I have been challenged repeatedly to either describe or demontrate the martial attributes of aiki to the aikido community.
I think it is fair to say, I have done so, now with some three dozen teachers as well as with two from Daito ryu.
Lest it escape anyone attention both Bill and Howard are on record as saying what I am doing is "their" aiki....hmm...What was that? Their aiki....hmm?
How can it fulfill a DR teachers requirements for aiki
And a 6th dan aikido teachers requirements for Aikido?...hmmm.
To move on.

Why don't you step up and clearly define Ueshiba's sprituality____________________________?
How, and where did his spirituality physically effect and manifested itself directly into the physical without physical training_________________?

Who are the aikido teachers who got it?
Have they produced written works?
Can they- upon testing- do the same things Ueshiba did?
Can I test them and meet them?
Thanks
Dan

Last edited by DH : 08-07-2009 at 05:58 PM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2009, 05:56 PM   #652
Kevin Leavitt
 
Kevin Leavitt's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido of Northern Virginia
Location: Stuttgart, Baden Wurttemberg
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 4,376
Germany
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Dan,

I have no issue with using the physical practice as a means to an end to get to "spirituality". I think we can all agree on that point right?

I mean the whole reason for us doing this is for this reason right?

But, that does not mean that martial effectiveness is on the opposite end of the spectrum from spirituality. It is the means to the end.

Hard work and toil.....pay....

  Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2009, 06:15 PM   #653
DH
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 3,394
United_States
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Quote:
Kevin Leavitt wrote: View Post
Dan,

I have no issue with using the physical practice as a means to an end to get to "spirituality". I think we can all agree on that point right?

I mean the whole reason for us doing this is for this reason right?

But, that does not mean that martial effectiveness is on the opposite end of the spectrum from spirituality. It is the means to the end.
No
It may well be for you and I right? But it doesn't do it as a model for everyone. Why?
Because there is no set and prescribed spiritual path to get there!
AND THAT was Don's real point you said you dissagreed with!

Katsujinken /satsujinken is a great example of that. Violence does not require moral fortitude. Your sniper or the pilot of the Enola Gay; could have been men of vision and moral stength...or they could have hired cold blooded killers to get the job done. Practicing violence promises no redemptive or transfomative qualities for anyone.

If we want to glorify our practice (Aikido) either way -spiritual and fully martial. We had better damn well come up with better definitions and human examples, because under strict scrutiny...we are failing to fulfill both requirements in one... miserably.
Cheers
Dan

Last edited by DH : 08-07-2009 at 06:26 PM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2009, 07:44 PM   #654
Erick Mead
 
Erick Mead's Avatar
Dojo: Big Green Drum (W. Florida Aikikai)
Location: West Florida
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 2,505
United_States
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Quote:
Kevin Leavitt wrote: View Post
But, that does not mean that martial effectiveness is on the opposite end of the spectrum from spirituality. It is the means to the end.

Hard work and toil.....pay....
I would take it little deeper than that. This is an excellent piece on two fundamentally different natures in spiritual effort.,.. embodied in the twins Esau and Jacob who "fought in the womb." It bears reading at length, but suffice it to say there are those who are made to build up and seek after righteousness, and those who were made to strive in the midst of and (hopefully) triumph over evil. An excellent reflection that puts a slightly less binary cast on the katsujinken/satsujinken thought.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2009, 08:45 PM   #655
Kevin Leavitt
 
Kevin Leavitt's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido of Northern Virginia
Location: Stuttgart, Baden Wurttemberg
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 4,376
Germany
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
No
It may well be for you and I right? But it doesn't do it as a model for everyone. Why?
Because there is no set and prescribed spiritual path to get there!
AND THAT was Don's real point you said you dissagreed with!

Katsujinken /satsujinken is a great example of that. Violence does not require moral fortitude. Your sniper or the pilot of the Enola Gay; could have been men of vision and moral stength...or they could have hired cold blooded killers to get the job done. Practicing violence promises no redemptive or transfomative qualities for anyone.

If we want to glorify our practice (Aikido) either way -spiritual and fully martial. We had better damn well come up with better definitions and human examples, because under strict scrutiny...we are failing to fulfill both requirements in one... miserably.
Cheers
Dan
I agree Dan, it doesn't have to be a model for everyone. There are many ways of course.

I don't disagree with Don's point in this respect. Not at all.

Sure, they could have been cold blooded killers or not. Agreed. The context of our training though needs to allow room though for this to even be determined, based on the merits of their true intent, not simply judged on the act of killing alone. That is all I was really saying.

Agreed we need to come up with better definitions. I think this is what our journey is all about though is to critically think about this as we go down the path and learn.

I have really enjoyed the discussion over the past couple of days. To see where we all were 2 and 3 years ago on this subject and the nature and level of the dialogue then verses now is good to see.

I am really curious about what everyone is talking about when it comes to Intent and how important it is in what you are teaching. Do you see this related to this topic?

  Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2009, 08:53 PM   #656
DH
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 3,394
United_States
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Quote:
But, that does not mean that martial effectiveness is on the opposite end of the spectrum from spirituality. It is the means to the end.
Kevin
I should have been clearer. Tied in with my other post,what I meant to demonstrate or show was that ther simply is or never was a constant. [*]You could me morally bancrupt and find yourself through charitable work[*] or find your self through God[*] Or what? Find yourself through fighting with an agreed movement?[*] Yet there are people who are already found and centered individuals, not damaged goods who enter- in and are "Good to go" who's martial skills are awful[*] Now add the same qualifier but we meet the same good to go people with great martial abilties
on and on.
Spiritual/ martial
The two can be one, the two can be disparate, the two can be resolved; with various legendary and compelling stories; of the warrior sage putting down his arms or the tender dove rising to the oncoming storm- pick your poison.

Which still leads me to the question offered to Shaun and presented as a statement to you and I. In aikido
There is no set and prescribed spiritual path to get ____________(I dunno, somewhere) that anyone has laid out and defined!
Cheers
Dan
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2009, 08:59 PM   #657
Kevin Leavitt
 
Kevin Leavitt's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido of Northern Virginia
Location: Stuttgart, Baden Wurttemberg
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 4,376
Germany
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Cool Dan ...I am with you on this.

  Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2009, 10:19 PM   #658
DH
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 3,394
United_States
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Sorry about the imbedded formatting in the last post. operator error I guess.

Quote:
Kevin Leavitt wrote: View Post
Agreed we need to come up with better definitions. I think this is what our journey is all about though is to critically think about this as we go down the path and learn.

I have really enjoyed the discussion over the past couple of days. To see where we all were 2 and 3 years ago on this subject and the nature and level of the dialogue then verses now is good to see.
The simple answer- it was the work.
What was perceived as too defining or even braggadocio ended when the preponderance of testimony showed up and almost everyone here…was wrong.
That’s a tough pill to swallow.
In P.C. speak we can say “Over time we established a mutually beneficial dialogue and moved the discussion forward.” And everyone can feel good.
The real change in dialogue was when everyone felt it and went "What the ____ is that?"
We all know what happened.It was after that -that we established "a dialogue."
After IHTBF....
Certain smart people went to work
Others went back to typing

Hey, you know what the best way is to marginalize a detractor? Embrace him, invite him to your dojo, train with him, and then tell your people you checked it out and you don’t need it. It’s not really Aikido.

People like Bill and Ikeda a very rare. They put their stuff aside and dug in. Bill is a veritable lion. There are just simply Aikidoka who were not going to stand for not having this and just got after it.
This is only the beginning of a new standard. A standard that in the fullness of time everyone will be measured by. It's just too defining, too absolute, and altogether too obvious.

It’s Ueshiba’s Aikido-one of the most powerful arts in the world........If you know how to do it.

Quote:
I am really curious about what everyone is talking about when it comes to Intent and how important it is in what you are teaching. Do you see this related to this topic?
Intent, is everything.
But it springs from the mind/heart/will. And they...are not all the same So what you get as a result...will not always be the same.

This work is not for everyone.
Dan
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2009, 10:26 PM   #659
Kevin Leavitt
 
Kevin Leavitt's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido of Northern Virginia
Location: Stuttgart, Baden Wurttemberg
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 4,376
Germany
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Thanks Dan. I do hope I can make it up your way to train someday.

  Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2009, 11:51 PM   #660
gdandscompserv
 
gdandscompserv's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 1,214
United_States
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Quote:
John Brockington wrote: View Post
I suspect that what is in common here, and with O Sensei, is the willingness to basically go off on one's own and train like crazy. Not in a dojo or other place where there is a lot of readily accessible validation or social support. But in a place where there is no one to answer to but yourself. No one to make you train or to train with but yourself. And then question yourself, over and over, test yourself again and again. And do this with brutal honesty and introspection. Then, I think, the spiritual and physical, the "do" and the "jutsu" will converge.
John,
I think that you are right.
Ricky
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2009, 11:59 PM   #661
gdandscompserv
 
gdandscompserv's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 1,214
United_States
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
I have a lengthy reply I will try to get to at some point.
A few quick comments
This training is spiritual for me.
Also, it not only has changed me but it is a continuing comment I have heard from many people who train here. That it is changing, not only peoples view of the martial paradigm but their need to fight anybody. That in itself becomes a defining point in your training when you realize there isn't much anyone can do to you without an extraordinary effort on their part.
Last, Lonely? I would seriously consider that. I am surrounded by smiling laughing people. Maybe that speaks to our own choices in life
I...am having a blast .
Dan
Dan,
You are surrounded by them now, but I suspect the path that you took to refine the skillset you have attained was a lonely one at times. It does take alot of solo work, no? Heck, didn't you even experience that "loneliness" here on aikiweb, being banished to the non-aikido thread here and there.
Ricky

Last edited by gdandscompserv : 08-08-2009 at 12:07 AM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2009, 06:28 AM   #662
dps
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,172
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Could this be a means of disrupting the internal structure or aiki of your opponent's body?

Langevin HM.

Department of Neurology, University of Vermont, College of Medicine, Burlington, 05405, USA. Helene.Langevin@uvm.edu

Unspecialized "loose" connective tissue forms an anatomical network throughout the body. This paper presents the hypothesis that, in addition, connective tissue functions as a body-wide mechanosensitive signaling network. Three categories of signals are discussed: electrical, cellular and tissue remodeling, each potentially responsive to mechanical forces over different time scales. It is proposed that these types of signals generate dynamic, evolving patterns that interact with one another. Such connective tissue signaling would be affected by changes in movement and posture, and may be altered in pathological conditions (e.g. local decreased mobility due to injury or pain). Connective tissue thus may function as a previously unrecognized whole body communication system]. Since connective tissue is intimately associated with all other tissues (e.g. lung, intestine), connective tissue signaling may coherently influence (and be influenced by) the normal or pathological function of a wide variety of organ systems. Demonstrating the existence of a connective signaling network therefore may profoundly influence our understanding of health and disease.

http://www.springerlink.com/content/juq29r087y2ly3dg/

Download of pdf file; http://www.anatomytrains.com/explore...ies/show/id/52

Bold print is mine.

David

Last edited by dps : 08-08-2009 at 06:36 AM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2009, 07:37 AM   #663
DH
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 3,394
United_States
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Quote:
Ricky Wood wrote: View Post
Dan,
You are surrounded by them now, but I suspect the path that you took to refine the skillset you have attained was a lonely one at times. It does take alot of solo work, no? Heck, didn't you even experience that "loneliness" here on aikiweb, being banished to the non-aikido thread here and there.
Ricky
Hello Ricky
Lonely? Never. Not at all. Alone time is a requirement. I revel in solo work and I am very jealous of my alone time as much as my research time with some select students. It's the only way I will stay ahead of you guys....
But, I was never alone in the now infamous "barn." I have trained with over 300 people. And that is the other side of the coin. One must experiment and do their research against those who try to see you undone. That, is a requirement also.

All of which leads me to the idea of what’s "missing in Aikido" and the recent turn to discussions of spirituality disseminated in the art.
It is my opinion that this work changes you from the inside out-in more ways than one, and leads you to reach out with an open hand. I grow suspect of what "Budo" has become, with these ranks and politics. Of what it does and is allowed to do to the people in it. Worse, in the casual indifference of some senior teachers- who look at the students and say "Screw em if they don't have the brains to figure it out." It's as if they congratulate themselves for having wound their way through the mess before them and having "arrived" somewhere think it’s just “jolly good business” to now make others follow instead of forcing a change from the top-even if it costs them. I spend my professional life with wealthy men who very much exhibit that mentality at every turn. That is not and will never be my Budo. There should be no place for elitism or lording it over anybody. We need to fix what we find wrong, and share when we can.
We have given the Asians a chance to strut their stuff and teach (and hold back) and tell us we can't understand their culture. All while they make good use of making money over our efforts, controlling the flow of information, being unwilling to learn our ways, with us being told we need to "steal technique” or be found wanting.
I’ve had a belly full of that crap.
People should know that the oldest legitimate Koryu's are making better efforts to find ways to disseminate to a western populace than their modern counterparts.

I say those who would dare to claim they are teaching a modern art with a moral ascendency need to demonstrate that morality and compassion for all of their students from the top down and get to work teaching. Clearly they have failed in both aspects.

Which leads me to Shaun’s comments
Who would ever dare to say they hold the true teachings of Ueshiba, tucked away some where. That it is reserved or "held" for only a few when Ueshiba's every word was to give Aikido to the world. At face value it obvious to me that they failed to truly understand him by the fact of their very existence. That's nothing more than another round of self- serving nonsense and speaks without saying a word. The sooner it dies out, the better.

Cheers
Dan
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2009, 08:29 AM   #664
gdandscompserv
 
gdandscompserv's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 1,214
United_States
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
Hello Ricky
Lonely? Never. Not at all. Alone time is a requirement. I revel in solo work and I am very jealous of my alone time as much as my research time with some select students. It's the only way I will stay ahead of you guys....
But, I was never alone in the now infamous "barn." I have trained with over 300 people. And that is the other side of the coin. One must experiment and do their research against those who try to see you undone. That, is a requirement also.

All of which leads me to the idea of what's "missing in Aikido" and the recent turn to discussions of spirituality disseminated in the art.
It is my opinion that this work changes you from the inside out-in more ways than one, and leads you to reach out with an open hand. I grow suspect of what "Budo" has become, with these ranks and politics. Of what it does and is allowed to do to the people in it. Worse, in the casual indifference of some senior teachers- who look at the students and say "Screw em if they don't have the brains to figure it out." It's as if they congratulate themselves for having wound their way through the mess before them and having "arrived" somewhere think it's just "jolly good business" to now make others follow instead of forcing a change from the top-even if it costs them. I spend my professional life with wealthy men who very much exhibit that mentality at every turn. That is not and will never be my Budo. There should be no place for elitism or lording it over anybody. We need to fix what we find wrong, and share when we can.
We have given the Asians a chance to strut their stuff and teach (and hold back) and tell us we can't understand their culture. All while they make good use of making money over our efforts, controlling the flow of information, being unwilling to learn our ways, with us being told we need to "steal technique" or be found wanting.
I've had a belly full of that crap.
People should know that the oldest legitimate Koryu's are making better efforts to find ways to disseminate to a western populace than their modern counterparts.

I say those who would dare to claim they are teaching a modern art with a moral ascendency need to demonstrate that morality and compassion for all of their students from the top down and get to work teaching. Clearly they have failed in both aspects.

Which leads me to Shaun's comments
Who would ever dare to say they hold the true teachings of Ueshiba, tucked away some where. That it is reserved or "held" for only a few when Ueshiba's every word was to give Aikido to the world. At face value it obvious to me that they failed to truly understand him by the fact of their very existence. That's nothing more than another round of self- serving nonsense and speaks without saying a word. The sooner it dies out, the better.

Cheers
Dan
Dan,
I am quoting you here because I think it bears repeating.
Thanks for your time and effort! I sincerely hope to train with you someday as I have learnt much just from your words here on aikiweb, and it is obvious to me now that you have so much more to offer than just words.
Sincerely,
Ricky
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2009, 08:45 AM   #665
Erick Mead
 
Erick Mead's Avatar
Dojo: Big Green Drum (W. Florida Aikikai)
Location: West Florida
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 2,505
United_States
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Quote:
David Skaggs wrote: View Post
Could this be a means of disrupting the internal structure or aiki of your opponent's body?... Such connective tissue signaling would be affected by changes in movement and posture, and may be altered in pathological conditions (e.g. local decreased mobility due to injury or pain). Connective tissue thus may function as a previously unrecognized whole body communication system].
It doesn't have to get that speculative. Read this: Jendrassik Maneuver. And this

Understand that, in addition to the process of a wound causing histamine release (which contracts the myofascial tissues), so too will oxytocin -- the"love" hormone. Epinephrine doesn't. While adrenaline causes the "rush" of blood pressure changes and other things in the sympathetic nervous system preparing to exert -- love triggers that typical whole body fluttering thrill in the contemplation of the beloved, which is the smooth muscle and the myofascia --part of the parasympathetic system.

If the myofascia are contracted it potentiates the skeletal reflexes, by pretensioning the gamma motorneuron muscle spindles and golgi tendon organs. Doing this means that the entire structure is engaged and not slack, and so it is very difficult to shear any part of it. The Jendrassik maneuver does the same thing mechanically.

When engaging an opponent offensively we can with a pulse of a shearing wave at the correct rhythm and amplitude do the following things:
1) put any structural discontinuity in a shear
2) remove the slack sharply at that joint -- creating a structural stress from the shear
3) trigger an extensor or flexor spinal reflex depending on the phase of the shear opposite the discontinuity
4) the pulse wave automatically reverses phase -- fixing the shear offset in place, and the reflex action now adds to the shear input instead of countering it
5) follow through in rhythm with the correct phase reversal results in either aiki age (extensors) or aiki sage (flexors).

This can be done after loading the structure in compression or in tension, which results in mechanical buckling. The grosser forms of movement in aikido are the SAME DYNAMIC SHAPE, and therefore correct, although they will not engage the above actions directly until they can be scaled to a the correctly consistent rhythm, which involves shorter, sharper action, and proper rhythmic follow through seen in furitama/ funetori and the the various kokyu undo.

On the "love" front, if there are no structural discontinuities -- i.e. -- the slack is out -- the body can't be easily sprung against itself in a shear. The wave simply reverberates in the body and passes out (yamabiko) (or 'receives and feeds,' if you will.). Doing this intentionally is tricky, though. While certainly effective in using the mechanism, it is not systemic, and therefore vulnerable to the lapse of intent. If attention is poor or disrupted or the practice less than completely extensive in the body, it will fail to that degree.

I submit that O Sensei's aikido and his obsession with mystic practice enabled this powerful protective-love response and the release of oxytocin in the body in reaction to threat or falling into the proper and practiced manner of contemplative spirit. It is biomechanically correct. It is neuromuscularly correct. It is suggestive of the otherwise odd-seeming, but longstanding association of martiality and mysticism, and his striking premise that that true budo IS love. It explains more questions that it creates.

Causing this at a systemic level requires no structural "intent." in the sens of conscious attention toward structure. It does require the correct spiritual posture -- and correct approach to the mechanical uses of it -- if it is to make the body inherently function in this way. If that spirit is maintained then the hormonal surge is known to be a positive feedback system. Once engaged it need not stop for many, many hours -- as with another function of oxytocin at even higher levels in childbrith (i.e. - ubuya was not an accidental image in O Sensei's mind). That is what any "true budo" must be able to manage in duration if it was to function in the reality of the world of battle from which it sprang.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2009, 09:09 AM   #666
rob_liberti
Dojo: Shobu Aikido of Connecticut
Location: East Haven, CT
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 1,402
United_States
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

This is what it kind of feels like when you fight with Dan:
http://www.todaysbigthing.com/2009/08/05
(exciting, unstoppable, extends your boundaries of what you think safe may be, and yet somehow predictable)

What is this? Did someone make a video of Dan Harden's latest battle caught on hidden camera?
http://www.todaysbigthing.com/2009/08/03
That's him in the dog suit. (just kidding)

And here is a good representation of how we train and manipulate ki:
http://www.todaysbigthing.com/2009/03/02

Rob

Last edited by rob_liberti : 08-08-2009 at 09:14 AM.

old mcdojo had a form, aiki aiki do...
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2009, 10:52 AM   #667
dps
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,172
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Quote:
Rob Liberti wrote: View Post
This is what it kind of feels like when you fight with Dan:
http://www.todaysbigthing.com/2009/08/05
(exciting, unstoppable, extends your boundaries of what you think safe may be, and yet somehow predictable)
Going down the slide traces the bottom of a sine wave and flying through the air is the top of the sine wave.

Quote:
Rob Liberti;237098What is this? Did someone make a video of Dan Harden's latest battle caught on hidden camera?
[url
wrote:
http://www.todaysbigthing.com/2009/08/03[/url]
That's him in the dog suit. (just kidding)
See, all it took was a video from Dan and now I understand.

Quote:
Rob Liberti;237098And here is a good representation of how we train and manipulate ki:
[url
wrote:
http://www.todaysbigthing.com/2009/03/02[/url]
Great balls of Ki!!

David
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2009, 01:26 PM   #668
donhebert
Dojo: River Valley Aikido
Location: Vermont
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 47
United_States
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Hi All,

In my previous post on spirituality in Aikido, I posed a number of questions, being sincerely interested in what others thought about spirituality and Aikido.

I do have some specific approaches that I use personally and I would like to share some of them here.

First I want to acknowledge that I claim no advanced knowledge of this topic and that I am often impressed with the level of spiritual integrity I encounter in people whether they talk about it or not. This applies to people on this forum.

Secondly, let me admit that this topic can get to sound awfully fatuous - so please, if I start to sound too serious, somebody throw a pie.

My impression of O'Sensei is that he approached Aikido from a shamanic perspective. Shamanism is rooted in the earth religions and involves forming a relationship with ones own personal gods or familiars. I think that when he was demonstrating Aikido for his students, he wasn't teaching techniques at all. He was manifesting the deity as it came through him in the moment. This has caused no end of trouble for Aikido over time. How does one codify such an experience for the purpose of transmission to others? At the same time, this has given wide latitude to individual practitioners to interpret Aikido in an astonishing number of ways.

Dan Harden has argued that there is a fundamental connectedness rooted in the body that can provide power in Aikido practice. The analogous statement for spirituality is there is a fundamental source of wisdom rooted in the unconscious that can provide insight in Aikido practice. The training itself can tap into this. Aikido can be like dreaming -- a source of truth that can be mined by using the will to listen to it.

On a physical level, Aikido training presents the person with a series of predicaments. One of the roles of uke is to create the predicament honestly so that the nage can work on the solution. Nage has to resolve the situation using the principals encoded in the art. I find it important that one measure of success is that the resulting movements are becoming beautiful as well as effective. Personally, I am a bit of klutz having spent my childhood falling off of things and making many visits to the ER for stitches. The idea that I could move in a beautiful way is simultaneously preposterous and sublime.

When we move during Aikido a rather embarrassing amount of who we really are is being revealed. Training is an unsettling mirror. This is why most of wince when we see a video of ourselves in action. Each physical predicament has a corresponding emotional or spiritual predicament. My responses to my partner become a channel for personal insight into my true nature. For example, am I connecting with my partner or am I disconnecting? Do I want to dominate my partner or do I want them to like me? Am open or am I shielding myself. Each of us has our own issues to work with and the trick is not put a lot of judgment on what we are experiencing, but to accurately notice it and then try to shift into a direction that causes growth. Because our internal nature expresses itself in the movements of the body, when we apply aiki principles to our movement there is a corresponding positive influence on our internal being. I believe that this one of the fundamental ways that Aikido can inform our spiritual progress.

This is hard work -- just as hard as the physical work. Here is an example. Once many years ago, sensei was demonstrating shomen-uchi ikkyo. His entering movement was clean and beautiful. After an interval of practice he stopped the class and began criticizing us for the flinching response that we were making before our attackers were really within range. "You are all feeling pain before anything happens!" he yelled at us. Then he imitated us mercilessly. This was a difficult time period of my life and I experienced a sudden, painful, flood of insight. This is what I was doing in my relationship! I was flinching away at every possibility of conflict in the hopes of avoiding the end of the relationship. Of course it was this semi-unconscious response that was fueling a failure with an important person in my life. It was a powerful moment. To be able to then standup and do the work of performing a clean irimi movement was painful and humbling and at the same time empowering and freeing. This basic work with my partner helped me to begin to make a profound shift in how I operated in the world.

This work can be found in the simplest aspects of our training. When I face my partner is my posture slouching because I am lazy or because of how I feel about myself? Am I taking an aggressive approach because I am afraid of looking bad? How do I feel about my partner? And so it goes. One has to be willing to do the work of noticing what is going on and how it connects to the major themes of our lives. I find this work of connection to be profoundly vitalizing and often joyous. If I were to regard Aikido as only as a bunch of fighting techniques I would be missing out on a lot.

The martial edge of Aikido practice has an important role however. Without a good predicament, I am too comfortable. I make the most progress with my learning when I am on the edge of failure or have actually failed. As our Aikido improves, we need to be willing to turn up the martial heat in order to make new progress. This is why the fear of looking bad can be such a major impediment. Of course we don't want to push so far beyond our abilities that we can't get anything. But it is important to consciously put ourselves a little out of our comfort zones on a regular basis. This is how we achieve aliveness.

This topic goes quite bit deeper and has connections webbing out to many things. Does anyone else do what I am describing? I will be interested to continue to read what people think.

I don't want answers to everything. The mystery of existence is as deeply satisfying as discovery. But I do want to experience my life as fully as I can before it comes to an end and I am concerned about the condition of my heart when it does. Aikido is one path (out of many) that can help.

I think I have earned several pies. Make at least one of them with whipped cream.

Best regards,

Don Hebert
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2009, 03:49 PM   #669
Thomas Campbell
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 407
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Beautifully written post, Don. My comments are in bold italics after the segments I'm responding to.

Quote:
Don Hebert wrote: View Post
[snip]
My impression of O'Sensei is that he approached Aikido from a shamanic perspective. Shamanism is rooted in the earth religions and involves forming a relationship with ones own personal gods or familiars. I think that when he was demonstrating Aikido for his students, he wasn't teaching techniques at all. He was manifesting the deity as it came through him in the moment. This has caused no end of trouble for Aikido over time. How does one codify such an experience for the purpose of transmission to others? At the same time, this has given wide latitude to individual practitioners to interpret Aikido in an astonishing number of ways.

I agree with the idea that Ueshiba fit the role of a shaman, saw himself in that kind of priest/healer role in the latter decades of his life.

Dan Harden has argued that there is a fundamental connectedness rooted in the body that can provide power in Aikido practice. [snip]

When we move during Aikido a rather embarrassing amount of who we really are is being revealed. Training is an unsettling mirror. This is why most of wince when we see a video of ourselves in action. Each physical predicament has a corresponding emotional or spiritual predicament. [snip]

This work can be found in the simplest aspects of our training. When I face my partner is my posture slouching because I am lazy or because of how I feel about myself? Am I taking an aggressive approach because I am afraid of looking bad? How do I feel about my partner? And so it goes. One has to be willing to do the work of noticing what is going on and how it connects to the major themes of our lives. I find this work of connection to be profoundly vitalizing and often joyous. If I were to regard Aikido as only as a bunch of fighting techniques I would be missing out on a lot. [snip]

The type of training and the skills being worked on with Dan's approach do force the honest practitioner to confront themselves. All kinds of gaps and breaks and tension and off-center posture and movement becomes apparent in one's own body.

[snip] it is important to consciously put ourselves a little out of our comfort zones on a regular basis. This is how we achieve aliveness. [snip]

Going a little outside of our comfort zone every day will soon add up and synergize into a substantial leap in our internal awareness, sense of internal connection, and eventually in our movement. This is healing and exhilarating at the same time. It is very hard work, though, and requires perseverance, resilience, and huge reserves of patience for often-tedious practice. That in itself is character-building.

[snip]

I don't want answers to everything. The mystery of existence is as deeply satisfying as discovery. But I do want to experience my life as fully as I can before it comes to an end and I am concerned about the condition of my heart when it does. [snip]

Great statement--my attitude as well.

I think I have earned several pies. Make at least one of them with whipped cream.

I'm working on a fresh strawberry-rhubarb pie right now. You're welcome to a piece, but I'm not going to waste it by throwing it at you.

Best regards,

Don Hebert
cheers,

Tom
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2009, 05:06 PM   #670
dps
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,172
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Quote:
Don Hebert wrote: View Post
I think that when he was demonstrating Aikido for his students, he wasn't teaching techniques at all. He was manifesting the deity as it came through him in the moment. This has caused no end of trouble for Aikido over time. How does one codify such an experience for the purpose of transmission to others?
You can't. Do we rely on his students? Do we figure it out ourselves? Do we need to take a step back into O'Sensei's past and practice the techniques ( Daito-ryu?) the he did that led him to his Aikido?

David
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2009, 06:02 PM   #671
MM
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 1,996
United_States
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Quote:
Don Hebert wrote: View Post
Hi All,

In my previous post on spirituality in Aikido, I posed a number of questions, being sincerely interested in what others thought about spirituality and Aikido.

I do have some specific approaches that I use personally and I would like to share some of them here.

First I want to acknowledge that I claim no advanced knowledge of this topic and that I am often impressed with the level of spiritual integrity I encounter in people whether they talk about it or not. This applies to people on this forum.

Secondly, let me admit that this topic can get to sound awfully fatuous - so please, if I start to sound too serious, somebody throw a pie.

My impression of O'Sensei is that he approached Aikido from a shamanic perspective. Shamanism is rooted in the earth religions and involves forming a relationship with ones own personal gods or familiars. I think that when he was demonstrating Aikido for his students, he wasn't teaching techniques at all. He was manifesting the deity as it came through him in the moment. This has caused no end of trouble for Aikido over time. How does one codify such an experience for the purpose of transmission to others? At the same time, this has given wide latitude to individual practitioners to interpret Aikido in an astonishing number of ways.
Anyone ever think to take Ueshiba at his words? That he really was being the avatar? That he had visions or dreams of the future? There's a reason all this spiritual mumbo-jumbo has filtered down through the ages in all cultures. People have had unnatural and unexplainable experiences throughout history. It's why we stumble across ancient texts and research and pretty much everything else trying to explain things. And then one day, something unexplainable and unnatural happens. Maybe we should take a hard look at that spiritual side of Ueshiba and keep an open mind. After all, quite a few people thought they were doing aiki until they met someone who actually had it.

But, then again, his son, Kisshomaru, pretty much changed Aikido so that everyone didn't have to believe what his father did. There is enough room in the world for both ... and more. Your aikido is in your hands.
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2009, 06:54 PM   #672
gdandscompserv
 
gdandscompserv's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 1,214
United_States
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Quote:
Mark Murray wrote: View Post
There's a reason all this spiritual mumbo-jumbo has filtered down through the ages in all cultures.
What is the "reason" Mark?
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2009, 07:02 PM   #673
Kevin Leavitt
 
Kevin Leavitt's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido of Northern Virginia
Location: Stuttgart, Baden Wurttemberg
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 4,376
Germany
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Alot of stupid things have been done in the name of ignorance as well!

Not everything that is unexplained, is really "Unexplained"...maybe it simply means you don't understand it, but somebody else does and it really is not all that big a deal once you pull back the curtain and see the wizard at the controls.

Not saying that their isn't anything to all this...just that I think that very few people can really draw a conclusion about what O Sensei did, why he did it, and what it really meant. Very few folks, everyone else is just hypothesizing or making up legends that fit the stories they really want to believe are true.

  Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2009, 07:34 PM   #674
MM
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 1,996
United_States
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Quote:
Ricky Wood wrote: View Post
What is the "reason" Mark?
Sorry, wasn't clear. The answer was the next sentence, "People have had unnatural and unexplainable experiences throughout history."
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2009, 07:40 PM   #675
gdandscompserv
 
gdandscompserv's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 1,214
United_States
Offline
Re: Is It Missing In Everybody's Aikido?

Quote:
Mark Murray wrote: View Post
Sorry, wasn't clear. The answer was the next sentence, "People have had unnatural and unexplainable experiences throughout history."
But is there a reason for those experiences.
  Reply With Quote

Please visit our sponsor:

AikiWeb Sponsored Links - Place your Aikido link here for only $10!



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
Transmission, Inheritance, Emulation 12 Peter Goldsbury Columns 32 05-16-2009 07:05 PM
Transmission, Inheritance, Emulation 6 Peter Goldsbury Columns 35 03-13-2009 07:16 PM
Transmission, Inheritance, Emulation 10 Peter Goldsbury Columns 200 02-04-2009 07:45 AM
Aikido in Amsterdam, Terry Lax style... tiyler_durden General 11 11-03-2008 09:31 AM
Women and Everybody Else in Aikido George S. Ledyard Teaching 113 03-16-2008 08:27 PM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:26 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