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Old 12-02-2009, 10:48 AM   #51
Mark Peckett
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

I try not to get involved on these convoluted threads, but as far as O'Sensei being a copycat - I think it's fair to say he was an interpreter of existing belief, attempting to make it available to a wider range of people. It's not uncommon: Jesus Christ and the Prophet Mohammed both re-interpreted existing Semitic belief as Gautama Buddha did with Hinduism.
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Old 12-02-2009, 09:05 PM   #52
Ron Tisdale
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

Quote:
All those years of expensive liberal arts education were apparently wasted on me...
Ah, no...they may have been wasted on someone else...but certaiinly not you!
B,
R

Ron Tisdale
-----------------------
"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
St. Bonaventure (ca. 1221-1274)
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Old 12-02-2009, 09:08 PM   #53
Buck
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

Quote:
David Board wrote: View Post
He tries here:

From all that, the most apt connection to Aikido is that an Aikidoist should like an archer focus on the goal/ target and not worry about the fact that the arrow itself points off to the right. The arrow will flex and oscillate and if the archers aim is true will hit the target. But I'm projecting my own thoughts onto Buck.

Personally, I think the analogy is a bit forced. Perhaps this is because I see the archer's paradox being more analogous to a different Aikido paradox (and you thought there was only one). This other paradox would be based on the contradictory statements O'sensei made about techniques in Aikido. Without having my books at hand and being too lazy to google them I will paraphrase them and as such I may misrepresent them. But if I recall, O'sensei said that Aikido has no techniques and from every attack springs a new technique. On the other hand we practice technique over and over. We begin with static techniques that are very set, move to a more flowing style of those same techniques and then perhaps go onto a freestyle. In this case, the arrow/technique may seem rigid to a beginner or outside observer but for these techniques to work and hit their target they must flex and change. In this way an Aikidoist often begin aimed at their goal of free flowing formless but begin and repetitively train the set forms.

For me, the philosophical lesson of the archer's paradox is two fold. One, the arrow is not pointed at the target but still hits the target. Two, the arrow appears ridged but on closer inspection flexes. Anything that contains at least one and preferably both characteristics can be seen as analogous to the archer's paradox. One caution or additional point about the archer's paradox is that for the arrow to fly true it's flex (what was the technical word. span?) must match the bows. And to draw an analogy to far...
That is a bullseye! Yes, it was forced a bit, to contrast the result there is other or a greater Aikido Paradox. That is something I mentioned early on in the thread that people will have their own revelations and stuff. People will come to their own truth. I mean every gets something out it, that is there own. Or can expound in areas of it that others have. Or see it their own way. Who am I to dictate what people should get out of it, is my philosophy. That is why by posts are so loosely put, and I can see why some have issue with them. I realize I also rush them and are not well edited at times, there are other reasons for that, like am at work and stuff.

I want to thank everyone for their input, insight, opinions, thoughts, and perspectives on this. I have enjoyed reading them personally so far. And as a result, of the posts of others, I have new insight and new ways of seeing paradoxes and Aikido. I have new things to think about and consider that I didn’t before. To me that is the beauty of this forum that I have come to appreciate. I hope to read more posts in the future if this thread continues.
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Old 12-02-2009, 09:32 PM   #54
Buck
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

Quote:
David Henderson wrote: View Post
Hi David,

That was a good effort. (I tried substituting "flexing" for "redirecting" and it didn't really seem to work).

Still, and this is where I stumbled in my effort too, what is the metaphorical "spine" in Aikido waza that, in "flexing" reaches it's target?

Regards,

cdh
Though not directed to me,
I as I said before I didn't want to define things to precisely, I didn't want box it in. I want to leave room for individual interpretation, give it some breadth for the purpose of getting others thoughts and stuff. The results of that have been excellent

In reference to spine and compression refer to but not limited to being polar opposites, or the physics of the arrow resulting in the archer's paradox, as a parallel, in Aikido. That the dynamics of the arrow that is involved can apply similarily to a violent situation.

Sure anyone can argue it true or not. But the purpose is not to strictly argue such things. Instead its purpose is to explore, expand and share ideas. You can spend a lifetime arguing stuff, back and forth and let it degrade to personal attacks, which gets nowhere. I don't have the time to get lock into that "I am right you are wrong," and the insultive stuff that goes with it sometimes. I would rather spend my time differently. I read many posts here that have made me think, and point to different perspectives on paradoxes and stuff. That is good. I am grateful and appreciative of their time and effort.

Last edited by Buck : 12-02-2009 at 09:45 PM.
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Old 12-02-2009, 09:43 PM   #55
David Board
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

Quote:
David Henderson wrote: View Post
Hi David,

That was a good effort. (I tried substituting "flexing" for "redirecting" and it didn't really seem to work).

Still, and this is where I stumbled in my effort too, what is the metaphorical "spine" in Aikido waza that, in "flexing" reaches it's target?

Regards,

cdh
To be honest the analogy is a bit strained after all if technique is analogous to the arrow and "ultimately, you must forget technique, The further you progress, the fewer teachings there are. The Great Path is really No Path" (I have my books again. can you tell); then in the end you should be trying to be an archer without an arrow. Hmmm.

But if I don't try to take things all the way to the end but instead focus on where I am at (you may be much farther ahead than me) I can find my techniques flex or move with the force of the bow and alter their form to adapt to the particular bow. For example today we finished class Suwariwaza kokyoho (pretty standard practice) and while demonstating Sensei noted that if your Uke has "soft" hands you might have to connect with the bones of the forearm while if the have "hard" hands you can feel the connection directly through their hands. He then commented that you need to adapt your technique to the situation/uke.

Where I see the spine is the subtle, often unseen, modifications to a technique that allows a technique to travel to it's goal.

The overall problem is that the two key aspect of the Archer's paradox, the arrow being aimed slightly off target and the flex of the arrow apply to different aspects of waza. One to the penultimate goal (hard technique to reach Ki or at least flowing technique) and flex (altering the technique to match the situation but still in the end doing a technique). Maybe this disconnect is only due to my inexperience and current focus on understanding the just basic techniques. However, to be honest I think it is mostly forcing the analogy to work. Ah well. Either way, I thought a little deeper about technique. Now if I can only stay centered while attempting tenchinage. I keep leaning...
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Old 12-02-2009, 10:11 PM   #56
Buck
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

General comment, not connected to any other posts. I see paradoxes within paradoxes in Aikido, personally. For example, the paradoxes now being discussed, and other paradoxes like the writings of O'Sensei refer allot to the concept of polar opposites; popularly known as Yin and Yang. This is done metaphorically and not. Sometimes just different labels that are more familiar to the Japanese. And it is sometimes (my observation) the points of extremes in O'Sensei's personality and life, also point to a paradox that may or may not have transgressed into Aikido. All of that points more possible paradoxes in Aikido or one big one. It all depends on how you look at it. The point of paradoxes could lead some to greater understanding of the complexities of Aikido.

I do like the Archery's Paradox because it deals with physics and science, and can be used metaphorically as well in areas of Aikido. Both of which can be applied to Aikido. Whether accurately or not depends strictly on each individual’s perspective, and background.

I think the Aikido Paradox (openly and loosely presented) is an enjoyable idea to explore, to throw ideas around the room and discuss them. To discuss to get different views and perspectives is always a good thing.

Last edited by Buck : 12-02-2009 at 10:24 PM.
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Old 12-02-2009, 11:39 PM   #57
aikishrine
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

The truth can't be taught, it must be caught!
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Old 12-03-2009, 07:31 AM   #58
jxa127
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

Quote:
Keith Larman wrote: View Post
Sure, but trivial and shallow. Paradoxes used to flesh out more complex things tend to have some substance to them, some "meat on their bones" so to speak.
Good points, Keith. I never claimed that my example was deep, just that it was a paradox. I went into pendant mode because people kept saying that there's no paradox here.

In fact, I think there are some deep paradoxes in the whole peaceful study of violence that many of us who are not soldiers or police (or otherwise go into harm's way) participate in anyway. I mean, I've never even seen a bar fight, much less been attacked by thugs "on the street." Yet I spend years learning how to deal with various attacks with my bare hands, cut with a sword, and shoot well with rifles and pistols.

Beyond being a seeming waste of a lot of time, there's a seeming contradiction in there that may illuminate some deeper truths about the human condition. At the very least there's been a lot of book and millions of bytes of computer text spent on the topic.

Quote:
But all that said I really don't care how one defines a paradox or whether someone thinks violence/non-violence is a paradox in Aikido. The larger point for me is that I'm *totally* confused as to how the referenced Archer's Paradox related.
Ah well, I can't help much there. I was confused too.

Regards,

----
-Drew Ames
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Old 12-03-2009, 07:41 AM   #59
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

Quote:
Philip Burgess wrote: View Post
General comment, not connected to any other posts. I see paradoxes within paradoxes in Aikido, personally. For example, the paradoxes now being discussed, and other paradoxes like the writings of O'Sensei refer allot to the concept of polar opposites; popularly known as Yin and Yang.
I think you just like using the word "paradox".
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Old 12-03-2009, 08:23 AM   #60
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
I think you just like using the word "paradox".
That's two doxes, right?

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-Drew Ames
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Old 12-03-2009, 08:39 AM   #61
Keith Larman
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

Man, it's like reading a Jack Handey book...

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Old 12-03-2009, 08:43 AM   #62
Keith Larman
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

Quote:
Drew Ames wrote: View Post
Yet I spend years learning how to deal with various attacks with my bare hands, cut with a sword, and shoot well with rifles and pistols.
Paradox: I wonder why I enjoy spending time on a cement court hitting my fuzzy balls with a tennis racket yet also train *not* to get kicked in the same in the dojo...

What does it mean?!?!?!?!?!?!?

Sorry, back to my cave now...

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Old 12-03-2009, 09:50 AM   #63
jxa127
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

Keith,

I'm a bit concerned that you're hitting your fuzzy balls with a tennis racket. Self-injury is never a good idea.

Just remember: never fall in love with a tennis player because to her, love means nothing.

Warm regards,

----
-Drew Ames
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Old 12-03-2009, 07:57 PM   #64
Buck
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

The Archer's Paradox can be another model to explain Aikido abstracts. Things like having a positive attitude toward life, to think positively, but be ready for action with a calm and flexible mind without submitting to excessive physical strength. This is one principle to unify the mind and body- Seidokan webpagehttp://www.seidokan.org/unifymindbody.htm all can relate to the Archer's paradox where contradiction may be noted. That what doesn't seem to be is and it simply it works.

I found the Seidokan webpage to have some good things in it, and if you haven't seen it, give it a looksee.

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/newrep...reply&p=246962 All through, there is no mention of fuzzy tennis balls. But that situation does sound like quite the personal dilemma. Personally, it was a bit too much fuzzy information for me. Seriously, I thought it was fuzzy, I mean funny, the tennis balls, and all...

Per http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/newrep...reply&p=246956
I like to say the word paradox, but you can't hear it on the net. That is why I type it.

And a big warm fuzzy to you both for those comments, I appreciated it, got a good chuckle...

Last edited by Buck : 12-03-2009 at 08:04 PM.
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Old 12-03-2009, 08:13 PM   #65
Keith Larman
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

Hey, Buck, many styles have slightly different takes on even basic concepts. Where do you study/train/teach? That might help the more dense like me understand where you're coming from.

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Old 12-03-2009, 09:00 PM   #66
Buck
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

Quote:
Keith Larman wrote: View Post
Hey, Buck, many styles have slightly different takes on even basic concepts. Where do you study/train/teach? That might help the more dense like me understand where you're coming from.
Keith your not dense at all, I don't know why you would say that. I find your posts to be articulate and you be intelligent. What more is there to discuss?


Here is one of your post here.

Quote:
Keith Larman wrote: View Post
Okay, how about this, Buck. Please just tell me how the paradox you see of violence/non-violence (whatever that apparent paradox is to you) relates to the referenced Archer's Paradox. I mean other than you consider them both paradoxes that is. Or is that your point that you view violence/non-violence in aikido to be somehow paradoxical on one level but not on another (which is often the point of certain types of paradoxes)?

So are you saying it's not really a paradox and that's the connection to the Archer's paradox (which is explainable without paradox hence only an apparent paradox)?

I guess I'm missing the connection between whatever it is you see as the paradox in Aikido and the Archer thing. What's the connection/similarity/congruence? Or is it that you consider them both paradoxes and we could replace the archer's paradox with any old paradox? In which case I don't see why we're discussing that at all...

All those years of expensive liberal arts education were apparently wasted on me...

Last edited by Buck : 12-03-2009 at 09:08 PM.
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Old 12-03-2009, 09:16 PM   #67
Buck
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Thumbs up Re: The Aikido Paradox

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
In order to claim that a paradox exists, you must first state what the paradox is and then explain how it is a paradox: that is, how its parts are mutually exclusive. The confusion you're getting is that you didn't explicitly state the paradox: the closest you came was in the post above in which you said:

The paradox, according to you, is that aikido is "non-violent", yet violence is committed when aikido techniques are performed. I think that either of those statements can be refuted fairly easily. If any part of the statement of a paradox is not true or complete, the paradox fails. I think that may be what some posters are getting at.

Yea, I see that. And thank you for pointing that out. It is appreciated.

Mary, this is quote by you, and it is worth the read, and repeating here. Btw, you got a little fame having it out there, Kudos.

An unwillingness to deal forcibly with violence does not equate to moral rectitude.-- Mary Malmros
http://www.mvkarate.com/library/insi...collection.htm

Last edited by Buck : 12-03-2009 at 09:21 PM.
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Old 12-03-2009, 09:26 PM   #68
Buck
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

The Art of Peace is medicine for a sick world. There is evil and disorder in the world, because people have forgotten that all things emanate from one source. Return to that source and leave behind all self-centered thoughts, petty desires, and anger. Those who are possessed by nothing possess everything.
-- Morihei Ueshiba (O'Sensei)

One of my favorites. And once in a while I need to remind myself of that. Thank you to everyone, and I hope we all can share and appreciate those sincere words of O'Sensei. If we are not doing that than we are not doing Aikido.

A good New Year to everyone.

Last edited by Buck : 12-03-2009 at 09:30 PM.
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Old 12-03-2009, 09:38 PM   #69
Buck
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

Quote:
Philip Burgess wrote: View Post
Keith your not dense at all, I don't know why you would say that. I find your posts to be articulate and you be intelligent. What more is there to discuss?

Here is one of your post here.



Here is another. This one I just read, and I tell you, you got talent. You are a real comodian. get..it...comode...comodian.... It's a cheesy joke, I know.


Quote:
Keith Larman wrote: View Post
Just remember that in my extensive training as a martial artist only true masters know they must aim to the side of the bowl to hit the center drain. The Tidybowl Paradox.

Last edited by Buck : 12-03-2009 at 09:41 PM.
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Old 12-03-2009, 11:15 PM   #70
mickeygelum
 
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

Quote:
Where do you study/train/teach?
Why do you not answer the question?

Is it because you do not train, OR, are the twin brother of the other Walter Mitty that frequents here?
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Old 12-04-2009, 08:46 AM   #71
Keith Larman
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

Quote:
Philip Burgess wrote: View Post
This is one principle to unify the mind and body- Seidokan webpagehttp://www.seidokan.org/unifymindbody.htm all can relate to the Archer's paradox where contradiction may be noted. That what doesn't seem to be is and it simply it works.
Well, there's the rub, Buck. Trust me, I'm familiar with Seidokan's take on things -- I'm a student (and instructor) at the headquarters dojo. And I would say your statement above is simply, well, wrong. But that's not a criticism of you per se as what you've read on our website is it best a simple summary and isn't intended to do more than give an introduction to our practice and theory. Like anything of relative substance in Aikido ideas like this must be "fleshed out" in classes, discussion, and hands-on practice in the dojo. These are ideas that need context as well as a larger "web" of ideas to hold everything together. Everything interrelates and it's not something you just read and get. So all that said, I am familiar with the particular ideas and more importantly perspective on aikido concepts as taught within Seidokan on a much more intimate level since it is where I study and, in turn, also teach. That molds me, my ideas, and my understanding. It gives context to my ideas. It is the framework within which those things can be discussed intelligent and deeply. Without that we might as well not have a discussion...

I have also had the pleasure of training elsewhere as well and have found that different groups tend to have subtly different takes on things ranging from principles to the performance of technique. Context. Ki Society (and offshoots) tend to have a lot of different things going on as compared with a Tomiki group. Or Yoshinkan. Not to mention so-called mainstream "Aikikai" groups. And there the richness of discussion can still exist but it can really help to know where someone is coming from.

It's no big deal, Buck, I don't need to understand you. I'm just trying to get a handle on where you're coming from because there seems to be a disconnect somewhere. And it isn't just this thread but really more about all the threads you post. Taken in combination I don't see any sort of common underlying framework like I see in most others' posts.

Like I said before, maybe it is just me. Shrug.

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Old 12-04-2009, 08:53 AM   #72
Keith Larman
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

Oh, for others who might be reading this I'll also add that I don't think you need to be training in Aikido to be interesting in Aikido and want to discuss it. That's just another context within which to understand where you're coming from. To me it is kind of like discussing psychology with someone. Put a psychologist, a psychiatrist, sociologist, a social worker, a priest doing counseling and a layman in a room and they can have a really interesting conversation about the human condition. But the background does tend to inform and affect each person's particular perspective. I'm just trying to figure out where you're coming from, Buck. But like I said, no big deal.

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Old 12-04-2009, 09:59 AM   #73
Ketsan
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

Quote:
Philip Burgess wrote: View Post
The Aikido Paradox is that Aikido can be non-violent and be violent as seen in the techniques.
There are no techniques. There are provisional forms for teaching Aikido but these forms are not in fact Aikido any more than a cup is water. So while the provisional forms may be violent and while any physical manifestation of Aikido is violent Aikido is not in and of itself violent, it merely reflects the violence of our attackers who we are in harmony with. Aikido is that harmony, the form it takes though varies just like water varies with its container. You wouldn't say "This water is a mug, while this water is a bucket" in the same way you can't say "Aikido is violent" or "Aikido is peaceful" Aikido just is.

Last edited by Ketsan : 12-04-2009 at 10:05 AM.
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Old 12-04-2009, 10:44 AM   #74
Marc Abrams
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

Quote:
Keith Larman wrote: View Post
Well, there's the rub, Buck. Trust me, I'm familiar with Seidokan's take on things -- I'm a student (and instructor) at the headquarters dojo. And I would say your statement above is simply, well, wrong. But that's not a criticism of you per se as what you've read on our website is it best a simple summary and isn't intended to do more than give an introduction to our practice and theory. Like anything of relative substance in Aikido ideas like this must be "fleshed out" in classes, discussion, and hands-on practice in the dojo. These are ideas that need context as well as a larger "web" of ideas to hold everything together. Everything interrelates and it's not something you just read and get. So all that said, I am familiar with the particular ideas and more importantly perspective on aikido concepts as taught within Seidokan on a much more intimate level since it is where I study and, in turn, also teach. That molds me, my ideas, and my understanding. It gives context to my ideas. It is the framework within which those things can be discussed intelligent and deeply. Without that we might as well not have a discussion...

I have also had the pleasure of training elsewhere as well and have found that different groups tend to have subtly different takes on things ranging from principles to the performance of technique. Context. Ki Society (and offshoots) tend to have a lot of different things going on as compared with a Tomiki group. Or Yoshinkan. Not to mention so-called mainstream "Aikikai" groups. And there the richness of discussion can still exist but it can really help to know where someone is coming from.

It's no big deal, Buck, I don't need to understand you. I'm just trying to get a handle on where you're coming from because there seems to be a disconnect somewhere. And it isn't just this thread but really more about all the threads you post. Taken in combination I don't see any sort of common underlying framework like I see in most others' posts.

Like I said before, maybe it is just me. Shrug.
Keith:

PLEASE do not hold your breath waiting for Buck to directly answer your questions. Many people have posted similar questions to him, both public and private. When he has responded, his responses to them are pathetically comical at best and devoid of any real honesty/integrity. He is kind of like the Everready Bunny... He keeps going and going and going. Of course the going is kind of meaningless and useless.

Marc Abrams
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Old 12-04-2009, 11:07 AM   #75
Keith Larman
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Re: The Aikido Paradox

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Marc Abrams wrote: View Post
Keith:

PLEASE do not hold your breath waiting for Buck to directly answer your questions. Many people have posted similar questions to him, both public and private. When he has responded, his responses to them are pathetically comical at best and devoid of any real honesty/integrity. He is kind of like the Everready Bunny... He keeps going and going and going. Of course the going is kind of meaningless and useless.

Marc Abrams
Well, part of me would really like to understand where Buck is coming from. I'd like to give him the benefit of the doubt figuring it might just be me not keying in on some world view I'm just not getting. Absent that, however, his posts seem superficial and naive at best. As a result the other part of me keeps telling me that he hasn't given any reason whatsoever to think he actually has anything more than a cursory understanding of things. And his avoidance of saying what style he studies is odd to me at best -- to me it's like refusing to say what color socks you wear. It's an aikido forum -- surely saying what you study (or don't for that matter) isn't exactly irrelevant. And since I think it might help understand where he's coming from it would be nice to know.

So it takes me back to the guys on the beach picking the pot residue out from under their nails -- I can accept that what they think is seriously deep for them is in fact seriously deep *for them*. Just not for me. And since I don't smoke the stuff there is little reason to bother joining in the discussion as it would simply be a waste of time all around. Just looking for some context to hopefully put some form or structure around Buck's posted thoughts. Otherwise it seems much more consistent with the stoners' thoughts than the thoughts of someone who studies Aikido.

Shrug. Seems really odd to me to not say what lineage you're in. It's not exactly a personal, private thing. But whatever...

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