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Old 11-12-2009, 12:39 PM   #1
Erick Mead
 
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Enemies and Friends -- Applying "True Budo is Love."

"True Budo is Love."

As I cannot stand the flower-child, pasty, marshmallowy, wispy, and limply evading interpretation of this principle, I saw an article addressing some applicable hormonal biochemistry, and thought it would make a good jumping-off point for a discussion of the Liebes-Tod (love-death) aspects of love and budo in our approaches to attitude and how our demeanor may change from training and in training.

http://www.physorg.com/news177245481.html
Quote:
The narrow line between love and jealousy:
A new study carried out at the University of Haifa has found that the hormone oxytocin, the "love hormone", which affects behaviors such as trust, empathy and generosity, also affects opposite behaviors, such as jealousy and gloating. "Subsequent to these findings, we assume that the hormone is an overall trigger for social sentiments: when the person's association is positive, oxytocin bolsters pro-social behaviors; when the association is negative, the hormone increases negative sentiments," explains Simone Shamay-Tsoory who carried out the research.
------------------------------------------------

So, how do you approach love in its aggressive protective mode -- from all perspectives -- as it addresses enemies, friends -- and enemies that become friends?

My beginning observation is not a statement but more a "flavor."
Since Morihei Ueshiba was given to express himself in mythic terms -- I find that one of the best simultaneous expressions of these three points in a modern myth was in an episode of the science fiction show Babylon 5.

The background: Earth fought a disastrous war with a race called Minbari. That war ended only because, inexplicably, the Minbari just decided to stop -- on the verge of annihilating Earth itself, after capturing a captain of the Earth forces. They then became fast allies, personally and collectively.

In the episode Severed Dreams , a civil war between a corrupt Earth and its colonies has erupted. The Minbari take the side of the colonials. Delenn, a female leader, effective ruler, of the Minbari (more complicated, but close enough), leads a Minbari fleet to intervene in the attempt of Earth ships to capture the Babylon 5 space station, which has taken up the colonial cause:

--------------------------

<<Earth warships appear -- stage left >>

<<More Unidentified warships appearing -- stage right>>

<<Warships revealed as Minbari >>

Earth warships commander to Delenn:

--- "Don't force me to fire on your ships,"

Delenn:

--- "Why not? Only one human captain has ever survived battle with a Minbari fleet.

He is behind me.

You are in front of me.

If you value your lives, be somewhere else."


<<Exit Earth ships -- stage left>>

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
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Old 11-12-2009, 07:10 PM   #2
Abasan
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Re: Enemies and Friends -- Applying "True Budo is Love."

I find something missing here... where are the charts and diagrams?

Draw strength from stillness. Learn to act without acting. And never underestimate a samurai cat.
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Old 11-12-2009, 10:30 PM   #3
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Re: Enemies and Friends -- Applying "True Budo is Love."

Ushiro sensei talked alot about this up at Marc Abrams' dojo a few weeks back. He painted a entirely different picture of love and compassion. One that was based on the space that hard, serious training and lethality created. One in which you walk on the edge of a blade. It was refreshing to see a man of his strength and power discuss it in such a way.

I have heard Saotome Sensei do the same thing as well over the years.

It is serious stuff and never felt any touchy feely marshmellowy stuff from these guys!

Also don't taunt Meade to provide graphs and charts...you know he can do this at will any time he so desires!

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Old 11-13-2009, 01:05 AM   #4
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Re: Enemies and Friends -- Applying "True Budo is Love."

Quote:
Kevin Leavitt wrote: View Post
Ushiro sensei talked alot about this up at Marc Abrams' dojo a few weeks back. He painted a entirely different picture of love and compassion. One that was based on the space that hard, serious training and lethality created. One in which you walk on the edge of a blade. It was refreshing to see a man of his strength and power discuss it in such a way.
Sounds interesting. Would you summarize?
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Old 11-13-2009, 04:03 AM   #5
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Re: Enemies and Friends -- Applying "True Budo is Love."

Me summarize ANYTHING at all!

In short, in order to have aiki, you have to be able to let go of alot of things...alot of notions about yourself, the situation, and the opponent.

Alot of this has to do with letting go of fear that comes through gaining skill and experience.

With that comes a more true nature or authenticity, which I believe allows you to deal with the situation and relationship at a much deeper level.

For example, the difference between a handshake and a punch can be very thin line. however, you are not presumptive about what is going to happen as you are able to walk the thin line up to the moment that uke reveals his true intention.

However, you emotional state, context, or intent does not need to shift much from where you are and you can go back and forth between the handshake and attack without attachment to either.

The problem with this is that it is one thing to have the idealized intent to do this, quite another to actually have the aiki skill to do this.

I have seen alot of folks interpret this as yielding to uke, "listening to uke", seeking to understand. All of which is important to do, but is one side of the equation.

What really happens in the "Aiki-bunny" terms is "giving yourself over to nage". The concept of "Unconditional love" gets mis translated.

Alot of folks I think get the love thing down, but they can't really walk that line well.

On the flip side, you have the other folks that are all about power, destroying, "no you will understand me first, THEN I will ALLOW you to experience my compassion" side as well.

What you will find with some of the good internal guys is that they will not so much talk about Love and Compassion in the philosophical or idealized way...but they will talk about "letting go" in alot of different ways, they will demonstrate it in intent and the mind leads kinda way.

For alot of folks, once you experience it and begin to see the potential of it...it becomes liberating as you experience many more options that require you to change or notion and intent. It shows you a way to become "soft" without having to be yielding.

The word STRONG has a much different meaning today for me than it did a few years ago.

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Old 11-13-2009, 10:39 AM   #6
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Re: Enemies and Friends -- Applying "True Budo is Love."

My sensei related to me about a true story in Indonesia. I think this man was his student once, and he is in the military that is posted to watch the coast. There's no fancy office, its just an outpost with him and a phone.

So, you guys remember the tsunami? I don't know where the guy was posted but he was there when it hit. He saw the waves coming. So he called his HQ told them about it, and they took his report but didn't give him further instructions. He then called his family and told them to pack and leave cause it looks like its going to be bad. His children told him to leave his post, but he says he can't because he's not been given such an order.

No order to retreat ever came, and he died watching the coast, doing his duty.

A warrior is not one who kills. That is but a killer.
A warrior is one who performs his duty above all else.
Strength is one's conviction and spirit.

Most people will say he was a stupid man. I find myself unable to hold to his conviction in that scenario. That probably makes me a lesser man since I value my life more than that of duty. Because my brain tells me its the damn bureaucrats that forgot to tell me to get the hell out of there. Yet I believe he didn't let logic rule his decision. This is a man, whose heart ruled strongest.

Draw strength from stillness. Learn to act without acting. And never underestimate a samurai cat.
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Old 11-13-2009, 11:19 AM   #7
Victoria Pitt
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I must be a bad person then.

I have read some of this "aiki-bunny" stuff and I guess I'm a terrible person.

I practice Aikido so that I am more in touch with my body and so that I have more options. I practice Aikido so that as I get older, my body may age, but I am slowing that aging process down.

If I need to practice Aikido on you, in the street? I assure you, I won't be loving you, but protecting myself. I work in IT now but I have had times when I have worked as a bouncer in a bar (and before anyone says anything, if I throw on a skirt and high heels, you'd be none the wiser of my "interesting" background). When I have worked security, I have not lost a single fight (the vast majority with men). There are two reasons why:

One: If I know I'm outgunned, I'm quick enough to get you out where everyone can see that you're trying to hurt me (on no, he's tying to beat up that woman!!) and therefore, you're going to get jumped by every guy who sees you. Situation, solved.

Two: If I need to take you on, I am going to hurt you really bad for the simple reason that if you attack me, you don't "love" me nor have my best interests in mind. If you strike me, I'm going to break your arm because I don't want to just "pin" you. Little old me pinning a big guy like you is only going to piss you off more and give you more impudence to try to hurt me even worse. No. If we're going to go, I am going to disable you so that you don't get up and make a try for me again. I am not going to "kill" you, but I will break something and not feel the slightest bit of remorse for it.

I try to use my wits to resolve confrontation mostly because I know that if I am force to fight you, I am going "in for the kill" so to speak. I am not an angry person. I am not a violent person. Its just my sense of respect for others and other people's spaces that makes me feel this way. I will do everything I can to avoid a physical confrontation but if you force my hand, I'm breaking yours, love be damned. I love myself more!

~Do one thing each day that scares you...~
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Old 11-13-2009, 11:23 AM   #8
Victoria Pitt
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Re: Enemies and Friends -- Applying "True Budo is Love."

One last thing...

I will say this about Aikido. I wish I had known some of these joint locks when I was younger. It would have been easier for me to hold some of these guys down when someone else was handcuffing them instead of some of the silly wresting matches we got into sometimes. We had a guy totally cracked out once and it took five of us to bring down ONE guy until the cops came.

~Do one thing each day that scares you...~
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Old 11-13-2009, 01:31 PM   #9
mickeygelum
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Re: Enemies and Friends -- Applying "True Budo is Love."

Quote:
I have read some of this "aiki-bunny" stuff and I guess I'm a terrible person.
"My name is Mickey....and I am a terrible person",
"HI, Mickey!"

Quote:
If I need to take you on, I am going to hurt you really bad for the simple reason that if you attack me, you don't "love" me nor have my best interests in mind.
Quote:
I try to use my wits to resolve confrontation mostly because I know that if I am force to fight you, I am going "in for the kill" so to speak. I am not an angry person. I am not a violent person. Its just my sense of respect for others and other people's spaces that makes me feel this way. I will do everything I can to avoid a physical confrontation but if you force my hand, I'm breaking yours, love be damned. I love myself more!
Ms. Pitt,

Thank you for this post, I wholeheartedly agree with your perspective. Sadly, we are the minority...Dojo ballerinas are everywhere.

Train well,

Mickey
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Old 11-13-2009, 04:02 PM   #10
Darryl Cowens
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Re: Enemies and Friends -- Applying "True Budo is Love."

That post mode me smile

Actually I'm reminded of training the other night, where Sensei asked us what we would like to do next, and one of the guys asked if we could do something with knives.

"Anything in particular?"
"Well, something realistic.."
"Ok.. (pause) well... realistically if a guy came up to you with a knife... you run.... best case scenario, if a confrontation occurs, you are still going to get cut bad.."

(demonstration begins)... "actually, what you'd really do is this.." *motions to punch in nose...

Not those exact words, but that's kinda how it went down... Seemed funny at the time..

Last edited by Darryl Cowens : 11-13-2009 at 04:11 PM.
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Old 11-13-2009, 05:56 PM   #11
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Re: Enemies and Friends -- Applying "True Budo is Love."

Victoria,

Not to take anything away from your experiences working in a bar as a bouncer, but that might be a slightly different environment from a strategic standpoint in dealing with long term sustainment of peace and harmony.

I mean, your concerns are fairly transactional and tolerances of behavoir are actually very narrow, and the rule of law in an establishment are pretty autocratic actually, since you either obey by the rules or your out.

I think the rules of engagement for bouncers are actually pretty simple for the most part and the application of tactics, techniques, and proceedures are really concerned with maintaining good order and conduct with in the boundaries of the establishment. If you don't then you apply your escalation of force criteria and they are out the door, and that terminates the relationship, exchange, or transaction.

Nothing wrong with that at all and I fully support your tactics and experiences of course as it sounds like you really know what you are doing.

However, when you consider many other scenarios outside of a bar in life, things are not so clear. (I also understand and acknowledge that these things also occur in a bar environment, but as I stated, they are subjugated by the fact that there is narrower set of tolerances and an autocratic rule within the boundaries of the bar.).

In the bigger scheme of things in the greater society this type strategy/tactics is not so easy to apply. You have to constantly deal with many variables, unknowns, and second/third order affects of actions you take.

In many instances it is hard to ascertain "friend or foe", and you don't have the ability to remove someone from the equation by kicking them out of a bar or banning them...no you will have to deal with them again and again.

I am all about dealing with folks that need to be dealt with in a physical manner. No issue there, I have had a fair amount of practice in this area as well.

However, most of the situations we deal with that are real problems for us in life are not so cut and dry and transactional in nature.

Therefore, I think, practices such as budo gives us much more than simple transactional techniques and skills to deal with the relationships we encounter in life...be it in business, our families, friends, enemies, or society.

Not meaning this as a criticism of your post or training. Simply would like to offer an alternative perspective of what I consider to be a very important point.

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Old 11-13-2009, 10:16 PM   #12
Victoria Pitt
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Re: Enemies and Friends -- Applying "True Budo is Love."

Quote:
Kevin Leavitt wrote: View Post
Victoria,

Not to take anything away from your experiences working in a bar as a bouncer, but that might be a slightly different environment from a strategic standpoint in dealing with long term sustainment of peace and harmony.

I mean, your concerns are fairly transactional and tolerances of behavoir are actually very narrow, and the rule of law in an establishment are pretty autocratic actually, since you either obey by the rules or your out.

I think the rules of engagement for bouncers are actually pretty simple for the most part and the application of tactics, techniques, and proceedures are really concerned with maintaining good order and conduct with in the boundaries of the establishment. If you don't then you apply your escalation of force criteria and they are out the door, and that terminates the relationship, exchange, or transaction.

Nothing wrong with that at all and I fully support your tactics and experiences of course as it sounds like you really know what you are doing.

However, when you consider many other scenarios outside of a bar in life, things are not so clear. (I also understand and acknowledge that these things also occur in a bar environment, but as I stated, they are subjugated by the fact that there is narrower set of tolerances and an autocratic rule within the boundaries of the bar.).

In the bigger scheme of things in the greater society this type strategy/tactics is not so easy to apply. You have to constantly deal with many variables, unknowns, and second/third order affects of actions you take.

In many instances it is hard to ascertain "friend or foe", and you don't have the ability to remove someone from the equation by kicking them out of a bar or banning them...no you will have to deal with them again and again.

I am all about dealing with folks that need to be dealt with in a physical manner. No issue there, I have had a fair amount of practice in this area as well.

However, most of the situations we deal with that are real problems for us in life are not so cut and dry and transactional in nature.

Therefore, I think, practices such as budo gives us much more than simple transactional techniques and skills to deal with the relationships we encounter in life...be it in business, our families, friends, enemies, or society.

Not meaning this as a criticism of your post or training. Simply would like to offer an alternative perspective of what I consider to be a very important point.
And I guess I am saying that if a male strikes me at any time, any where, he's going down. There is no situation (at least with me since I don't go around hitting people or insulting them) where it is okay for him to do so. Unless the guy who is hitting me is a 50 lbs weakling, then maybe, just maybe, I won't break something, but then again, I just need to go "boo" at a guy like that. The other one is females since most females do not know how to fight and do the hair pulling thing which wouldn't be fair. Then I'm like the mama-tiger playing with a kitten so I will restrain.

In my life time, I've been attacked by another woman once. Every other time its been a guy who had something to prove. I don't want a long tussle with you- I just want you to leave me alone. The best way to do that is to make sure you can't get back up to hit me again.

If you don't hit me, then I love you. Strike me, then its on.

~Do one thing each day that scares you...~
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Old 11-13-2009, 10:55 PM   #13
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Re: Enemies and Friends -- Applying "True Budo is Love."

Quote:
Erick Mead wrote: View Post
So, how do you approach love in its aggressive protective mode -- from all perspectives -- as it addresses enemies, friends -- and enemies that become friends?
For me the ideal is to never harm anyone and to gently massage them (and me) into concordance...And I'm not afraid of sounding like a naive and well-intentioned, though maloderous, hippy either. I say all you need is love and give peace a chance and yes, even the oft scoffed idea of utopia is possible, though probably still somewhat unlikely.
I haven't met anyone (I know of) who didn't respond positively to sincere kindness.
The scout motto of plan for the worst and hope for the best comes to mind, but I'd take it a bit further and suggest you have to also plan for the best or it eventually becomes all too easy to help the worst along...or at least, a situation that is less than its potential.
...And as any good hippy can tell you: every moment is, like, full of a cosmic universe of endless, infinite, and neverending potential! Wow, man! I think I just blew my own mind.

Gambarimashyo!
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Old 11-14-2009, 11:42 AM   #14
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Re: Enemies and Friends -- Applying "True Budo is Love."

Quote:
Victoria Pitt wrote: View Post
And I guess I am saying that if a male strikes me at any time, any where, he's going down. There is no situation (at least with me since I don't go around hitting people or insulting them) where it is okay for him to do so. Unless the guy who is hitting me is a 50 lbs weakling, then maybe, just maybe, I won't break something, but then again, I just need to go "boo" at a guy like that. The other one is females since most females do not know how to fight and do the hair pulling thing which wouldn't be fair. Then I'm like the mama-tiger playing with a kitten so I will restrain.

In my life time, I've been attacked by another woman once. Every other time its been a guy who had something to prove. I don't want a long tussle with you- I just want you to leave me alone. The best way to do that is to make sure you can't get back up to hit me again.

If you don't hit me, then I love you. Strike me, then its on.
Oh absolutely, I am the same way.

Within the greater context of budo though, we are looking at a the situation really well before it gets to that point.

As you state essentially, "once he strikes".... No issue from how you handle it from that point on, it is game on,and whatever skill you have dictates what "game on" means, and what is actually happening in the situaiton. The last thought in my mind to be honest is "how to I show this person LOVE".

However, as in most things in life, the bell curve applies. there is a escalation or series of events that lead to the attack, the peak of the attack and then the de-escalation and everything that follows.

How you conduct yourself in all three phases is very important in the greater scheme of things. How you live your life, how you approach the situation, the example you set, the image you present, the action/reactions you present, how you respond to the attack, when etc...are all very important I believe. Once in the attack, choosing the appropriate actions relative to the situation may be important too. Appropriate does not necessarily mean soft, weak, or indecisive. I submit that it is not that at all!

Once the attack is over, how do you deal with the situation, not only external, but internal as well. It is not always about the other person either...but most importantly about you.

Do you feel guilty, justified, how does it affect your own self image? how do others feel about you?

So, no issues with in the scope of what you are saying, however, I think in budo we are concerned more than simply the tactics within the moment...although that is absolutely a very important part of what we do.

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Old 11-14-2009, 11:54 AM   #15
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Re: Enemies and Friends -- Applying "True Budo is Love."

Quote:
Matthew Gano wrote: View Post
For me the ideal is to never harm anyone and to gently massage them (and me) into concordance...And I'm not afraid of sounding like a naive and well-intentioned, though maloderous, hippy either. I say all you need is love and give peace a chance and yes, even the oft scoffed idea of utopia is possible, though probably still somewhat unlikely.
I haven't met anyone (I know of) who didn't respond positively to sincere kindness.
The scout motto of plan for the worst and hope for the best comes to mind, but I'd take it a bit further and suggest you have to also plan for the best or it eventually becomes all too easy to help the worst along...or at least, a situation that is less than its potential.
...And as any good hippy can tell you: every moment is, like, full of a cosmic universe of endless, infinite, and neverending potential! Wow, man! I think I just blew my own mind.
Matthew you REEK of hippie!

Not that there is anything wrong with that at all in my opinion.

Well your very fortunate, I think, to have only encounter people that respond positively to sincere kindness. I agree, most folks I encounter are the same.

There are though, many people that could really careless about kindness, and they are past the point of wanting to try, they only want to take from you in someway, and the will do very clever things to make this happen both covertly and overtly.

so absolutely...think positive, but be prepared for the worst.

So I think the balance is to not live your life in complete distrust where you feel you must constantly be on guard and at a heightened sense of alert cause these individuals are out there, but to also have enough skill to be able to deal with them once they present themselves for what they are.

Alot of the Self Defense stuff (videos, courses, books) prey on the fear that arises out of this unknown. They try to teach us how to be alert, how to not be a sucker, in 10 easy lessons teach us how to be lethal and strong to never again be taking advantage of.

Some are good I think, some not...but that is not the point.

The point is, that I have never seen one that teaches us how to live our lives in such a way that we can maintain a high level of trust, openess, and connection to others, while not being a victim.

I am not talking about a bunch of feel good mumbo jumbo, but about something that is authentic, pragmatic, and real.

I think in a perfect situaiton, you have "room" and trust to be that cosmic hippy, yet you have the bite and the strength to do something if you need to!

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Old 11-14-2009, 03:07 PM   #16
mathewjgano
 
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Re: Enemies and Friends -- Applying "True Budo is Love."

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Matthew you REEK of hippie!

Not that there is anything wrong with that at all in my opinion.
Well, as my hippie mom would say, "the tree doesn't grow very far away from the nut."
Quote:
Well your very fortunate, I think, to have only encounter people that respond positively to sincere kindness. I agree, most folks I encounter are the same.
I probably didn't word it very well because I've also met plenty of folks who did not respond kindly to kindness. Some folks view kindness as a weakness, too. However, under the right circumstances, I believe anyone with a "normal" brain would automatically choose to respond positively to kindness because I believe humans are too social a species not to. We get pleasure when we perceieve kindness unless something gets in the way, such as learning that people who tend to give may also tend to get taken from. Suddenly trust issues get in the way of enjoying the kindness and what might be beneficial appears like a threat: "it's too good to be true."

It was a pretty vague thing to say maybe. I was just trying to describe my rationale for acting with love for my "enemies" to the best of my ability. "Utopia" is a joke for a good reason, but that doesn't mean it's an impossibility or shouldn't be tried for. I apply the same thinking to my trying not to cause harm: it may be nearly impossible, but if I don't at least aim for it I'm even less likely to make it happen.

Quote:
There are though, many people that could really care less about kindness, and they are past the point of wanting to try, they only want to take from you in someway, and the will do very clever things to make this happen both covertly and overtly.
Absolutely. And once people have committed to something, it becomes harder, if not impossible, for them to change course.

Gambarimashyo!
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Old 11-14-2009, 03:56 PM   #17
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Re: Enemies and Friends -- Applying "True Budo is Love."

Quote:
It was a pretty vague thing to say maybe. I was just trying to describe my rationale for acting with love for my "enemies" to the best of my ability. "Utopia" is a joke for a good reason, but that doesn't mean it's an impossibility or shouldn't be tried for. I apply the same thinking to my trying not to cause harm: it may be nearly impossible, but if I don't at least aim for it I'm even less likely to make it happen.
I agree. "Love for your enemy" does not have to mean weakness, or love in the sense that we typically consider love. I think it simply means seeking to understand him/her. It gives you insights I think on his motivations and can help you make more informed choices about your actions.

It does not mean, however, that you need to be weak or vunerable, quite the opposite I believe.

I think the irony in the whole thing from a utopic point of view is that eventually "understanding" leads to eventual mutual resolution in which we can achieve harmony.

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Old 11-15-2009, 12:15 PM   #18
Erick Mead
 
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Re: Enemies and Friends -- Applying "True Budo is Love."

Quote:
Kevin Leavitt wrote: View Post
I agree. "Love for your enemy" does not have to mean weakness, or love in the sense that we typically consider love. I think it simply means seeking to understand him/her. ...
An admonition likewise misunderstood, which is something else, yet again --
Quote:
Gospel of John, 2:15 wrote:
And making a whip of cords, he drove them all, with the sheep and oxen, out of the temple; and he poured out the coins of the money-changers and overturned their tables."
Quote:
1 Cor 4:19-21 wrote:
But I will come to you soon, if the Lord wills, and I will find out not the talk of these arrogant people but their power. For the kingdom of God does not consist in talk but in power. What do you wish? Shall I come to you with a rod, or with love in a spirit of gentleness?
Rough love is love no less.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
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