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Old 04-02-2010, 12:35 PM   #51
chillzATL
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

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Mark Murray wrote: View Post
Let me take an example from history. When Ueshiba talked about his meeting with Tenryu and Tenryu not being able to push him over and Ueshiba pinning Tenryu -- Ueshiba credited this to knowing the secret of aiki. When Ueshiba demonstrated his abilities by having people push on him, he wasn't doing techniques or moving. When asked about defining aiki by one of his students, Ueshiba shouted, "I am aiki!", not "it is in the techniques". When waxing eloquent about spirituality, one of his doka say something about when he didn't know where to go forward in his training, he turned to Izu and Mizu (spiraling,contradictory forces), not to more techniques.

Aiki isn't about the physical movement of the techniques. Aiki is about the individual self. Of course, if you want to use the double meanings of aiki, you still have to have the very first, most basic definition -- that of Daito ryu aiki. It is what allows one to be the center of a maelstrom of energy from one's self and from uke/attacker. It is this aiki that provides the foundation for being able to *be* the spiritual duality/singularity of uke/tori in aikido. In other words, being the bridge between heaven and earth and guiding other people across the bridge. You open upwards to become heaven and delve downwards to become earth while still maintaining you in a centrally held spirituality between them. When others encounter your physical body, they are then merged appropriately with your harmonious being.

But, it wasn't about physically moving, using timing and specific body placement to get an off balance or kuzushi and capture uke's center.

Not moving or moving didn't matter to Ueshiba. He was aiki. If he moved, it was aiki in motion. If he didn't move, it was still aiki (pun intended).

So, if one is *required* to move to gain an off-balance and capture center or to blend, one isn't using aiki. They are, most likely, using jujutsu principles. Aiki does not require that movement.

While aiki doesn't require the movement, that doesn't mean there are no movements in aikido. Takemusu aiki is about spontaneous techniques, so there obviously is movement in aikido. It's just that movement is not a requirement of aiki, but rather it is what happens when aiki is in motion.
Ok , i'm with you. I kind of thought that's what you were getting at, especially after your follow-up to Chris. Though I agree with Budd that in the context of the discussion, that's just going to confuse people more by making it sound more metaphysical and esoteric than it actually is.
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Old 04-02-2010, 06:57 PM   #52
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

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Mark Murray wrote: View Post
Aiki is maintaining self in a central equilibrium of infinite opposing spirals with no dedicated movements.
Physically, called torque moment, creating poised rotational potentials, with innate right-angle stress conversion, juuji -- i.e. -- "not being seen." By which I mean that reaction to inputs is on the opposite perpendicular -- not on the line of input, the response to a push on one line (increased compression) is an accommodating stretch ( increased tension) along the crossing line, and vice versa... because they are coupled.
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/attach...9&d=1215185239{{torque shear stress in a cylinder}}

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Mark Murray wrote: View Post
I am motion in stillness and stillness in motion.
Moment= potential; rotation = realized potential.

This is a typical trace of the most simplistic movement resulting from the release of those torque stress potentials (in this case pretty typical of udefuri)
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/attach...8&d=1215184421{{Lissajous curve -- two equal inputs interacting at 90 deg.}}

There are two ways to go at this. -- One is to start with moments and static torque expression (stillness) and work toward movement driven by those moments -- the other is to start with rotations (motion) -- purely pendular action -- and work toward the stillness of poised control. -- Each has its pitfalls; best worked in tandem. Both are found in the aiki taiso. They are the ultimately the same, mechanically, mathematically -- the only distinctions lie in your mind.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
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Old 04-02-2010, 07:19 PM   #53
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

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Erick Mead wrote: View Post
Both are found in the aiki taiso. They are the ultimately the same, mechanically, mathematically -- the only distinctions lie in your mind.
They are found in the aiki taiso, but the distinction is in how you have actually trained your body to do and express it . . and it has to be felt.
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Old 04-02-2010, 07:25 PM   #54
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

Quote:
Mark Murray wrote:
Where the "aiki" comes into it is that aiki doesn't require physical movement to create this affect in uke. Aiki is built entirely within one's body -- a truly internal skill. Whereas in a lot of aikido, it's a basic teaching that to create kuzushi/off balance/whatever in another person, one uses timing and physical movements.

Put another way, if you have to use some sort of timing and/or some sort of physical movement to gain off balance, kuzushi, capture center, etc, then it isn't aiki.
Quote:
Mark Murray wrote:
When energy comes in from some point, say my wrist, then I have the appropriate spiraling energy going not only with that energy but also opposite it while maintaining multiple vectors of opposing spirals all around me. When I move, I am moving my feet from my mid-lower-spine connection and not my quad muscles so that I negate any dedicated weight shifts (loading the opposite foot for the step). The grabbed hand may move, but it does so connected to my centrally held body, which includes my opposite hand so that I negate any localized, dedicated muscular contractions in my arms or shoulders. It is my mind, my intent, and my focus which creates appropriate and subtle changes within my body to keep all of this going. It is my trained body which allows me to handle more and more energy which in turn allows my mind to create stronger and cleaner intent and focus. I am motion in stillness and stillness in motion.
OK. Here's the problem.

When you bring the sword into the equation these examples no longer make sense, because they limit "aiki's" usefulness dramatically.

The amount of energy the human body can handle from the blade or point of a katana is close to zero.

The "joining of the energy/spirit" must happen outside of the physical body.

Aiki must be at least as applicable to sword-on-sword as it is to empty-handed confrontations.

-Michael
"Through aiki we can feel the mind of the enemy who comes to attack and are thus able to respond immediately." - M. Mochizuki
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Old 04-02-2010, 08:42 PM   #55
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

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Budd Yuhasz wrote: View Post
They are found in the aiki taiso, but the distinction is in how you have actually trained your body to do and express it . . and it has to be felt.
And it can be -- if you hear to what the body is TELLING you in doing the aiki-taiso. The current push is exploring the taut frame. But the loose frame is EXACTLY the same as the taut frame -- Too many people are just trying Do This or Do That in doing the aiki taiso instead of just letting the loose frame speak for itself.

Because the loose frame correctly tightens at every reversal. which is, admittedly, what most people are missing.

I don't fault those exploring the taut frame. But, the loose frame is the same as the tight frame -- the difference is the same as between the hanging chain and the arch -- the chain, loose and instantly adaptive; the arch must be adaptive the same way, but "breaks" or buckles in useful ways that are virtually impossible to anticipate or recover from. In that way the taut arch becomes loose at its reversal, as the loose chain becomes tight in its reversal.

In the adaptive frame, both are always present -- the taut spiral arches and the loose spiral chains are just inverse and at right angles -- just as the compression and tension are in right-angled torsion spirals.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
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Old 04-02-2010, 09:03 PM   #56
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

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Michael Varin wrote: View Post
The "joining of the energy/spirit" must happen outside of the physical body.

Aiki must be at least as applicable to sword-on-sword as it is to empty-handed confrontations.
Ever do the rubber-pencil trick ? Perception confounds action. Kinesthetic perception is very much the same; and some things in the body can be prompted to respond to perception without the intervention of any conscious thought. The mechanism of that perception transmits steel on steel, as well as flesh on flesh -- or "pencil on pencil" ....

Cordially,

Erick Mead
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Old 04-02-2010, 09:09 PM   #57
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

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And it can be -- if you hear to what the body is TELLING you in doing the aiki-taiso. The current push is exploring the taut frame. But the loose frame is EXACTLY the same as the taut frame -- Too many people are just trying Do This or Do That in doing the aiki taiso instead of just letting the loose frame speak for itself.

Because the loose frame correctly tightens at every reversal. which is, admittedly, what most people are missing.

I don't fault those exploring the taut frame. But, the loose frame is the same as the tight frame -- the difference is the same as between the hanging chain and the arch -- the chain, loose and instantly adaptive; the arch must be adaptive the same way, but "breaks" or buckles in useful ways that are virtually impossible to anticipate or recover from. In that way the taut arch becomes loose at its reversal, as the loose chain becomes tight in its reversal.

In the adaptive frame, both are always present -- the taut spiral arches and the loose spiral chains are just inverse and at right angles -- just as the compression and tension are in right-angled torsion spirals.
Fundamentally disagree with this, Erick, I strongly believe that you will not get a foot in the door with "this stuff" without getting someone to show you that has enough of a clue to move you in the right direction. If all it took was working on the aiki taiso and adjusting your frame, the optimist in me believes that there are lots of people smarter than you and me working on that . . and not being able to demonstrate basic internal strength development.

I think I get what you're trying to describe, but I would also caution that I think that you're looking in the wrong direction by trying to quantify what's going on without demonstrating a basic understanding of . . what's going on. It seems like you make it more complicated by adding more scientific jargon without describing the basic steps. And to be honest - to most folks that have more than a foot in the door to this kind of training, that is a bit of a giveaway.
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Old 04-02-2010, 09:52 PM   #58
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

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Budd Yuhasz wrote: View Post
. . which periphery were they at versus missing the meat . .
hi Budd,
that last part:did you mean that as a pun?
that first part: that is interesting; can you give a fer `instance?
Cheers!
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Old 04-02-2010, 10:27 PM   #59
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

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Budd Yuhasz wrote: View Post
Fundamentally disagree with this, Erick.
With what, exactly?

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Budd Yuhasz wrote: View Post
If all it took was working on the aiki taiso and adjusting your frame, the optimist in me believes that there are lots of people smarter than you and me working on that .
I did not say that was all it took. It takes observation -- lots of critical observation at key points -- you may review my prior posts and judge for yourself how critical I am in my observation. For reasons unrelated to aiki or aikido I have always been interested in places between, and it happens that I found something there.

You said it "has to be felt" ... Several people wanted to know what they should feel -- without having to trust someone on something they do not understand. I just told them -- they can go see how closely they choose to observe those cusp points. That does not make it easier to accomplish -- it makes it easier to get a sense of what they need to learn -- and for that -- training with all the folks you recommend -- I have absolutely no reason to talk them out of.

Quote:
Budd Yuhasz wrote: View Post
I think I get what you're trying to describe, but I would also caution that I think that you're looking in the wrong direction by trying to quantify what's going on without demonstrating a basic understanding of . . what's going on.
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Budd Yuhasz wrote: View Post
It seems like you make it more complicated by adding more scientific jargon without describing the basic steps.
Whatever else you assume, my comments come from personal experience. I thought starting with physical description in English is a more accessible manner of proceeding, even if the topic may be dense and difficult -- It is no less jargon than the Japanese terms, but still more accessible and concrete -- if one wants something more your own than "Do This or Do That." YMMV.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
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Old 04-02-2010, 11:11 PM   #60
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

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hi Budd,
that last part:did you mean that as a pun?
that first part: that is interesting; can you give a fer `instance?
Cheers!
For instance - a notable aikido instructor gives demonstrations on internal strength . . he's doing demos he was shown by someone else that does internal strength . . but is he doing them the same way with the same type of skill/ability? Or is he filling in some holes with something else?

Btw, that's not a question for me to answer.
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Old 04-03-2010, 12:18 AM   #61
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

I think what Michael is saying is, all the kokyu in the world is not going to keep a sword from cutting you, but movement will. Further, when using a sword, one doesn't need much force to make it destroy a human body.

Kokyu may very well be the first step in the "Aiki" equation, but it's only the first factor. Calling kokyu all of "Aiki" seems to be a bit limited.

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Old 04-03-2010, 07:42 AM   #62
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

I think if that's true you're both moving away from the topic of how expressing IS inside you first is necessary before applying it unarmed against another . . extending that further to engagements with weapons is still another step (in application, not principle).

There's folks that post here that actually are working on IS primarily to include back into their traditional weapons practice as well - I'd be curious to get their input as its been some time since I stepped foot in the weapons arena, koryu or gendai.
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Old 04-03-2010, 08:07 AM   #63
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

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Michael Varin wrote: View Post
OK. Here's the problem.

When you bring the sword into the equation these examples no longer make sense, because they limit "aiki's" usefulness dramatically.

The amount of energy the human body can handle from the blade or point of a katana is close to zero.

The "joining of the energy/spirit" must happen outside of the physical body.

Aiki must be at least as applicable to sword-on-sword as it is to empty-handed confrontations.
I think Mark's point was that aiki is developed within one's own body and not by the movement of the body in response to an attack. Once developed, you then move with aiki during a technique. Also, once aiki is developed within the body, it can be extended out through a weapon or even beyond via mental intent - all of this of course is beyond the basic aiki static development.

Greg
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Old 04-03-2010, 09:04 AM   #64
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

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I think what Michael is saying is, all the kokyu in the world is not going to keep a sword from cutting you, but movement will. Further, when using a sword, one doesn't need much force to make it destroy a human body.

Kokyu may very well be the first step in the "Aiki" equation, but it's only the first factor. Calling kokyu all of "Aiki" seems to be a bit limited.
In fact I would suggest that the use of a sword speeds the development of both kokyu and "Aiki" at least from I've seen limited as it my be...

If one can cut and avoid being cut Tai-Jitsu 'movement" is much easier.

the fastest fist I have ever faced is the tip of Uke's Sword or Jo.

William Hazen
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Old 04-03-2010, 10:39 AM   #65
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

To me "kokyu" is proper use and alignment of the body. This is not an exotic thing, but something we can all get a handle on.

To me, many seem to be calling some form of advanced body skill (what I would call advanced kokyu) "Aiki".

Seems that we all agree that "Aiki" is more then body skill. Kokyu is the first step in making "Aiki", but only a step. So why call kokyu "Aiki"?

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Old 04-03-2010, 10:59 AM   #66
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

Chris, where does the breath come in with your definition of kokyu?
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Old 04-03-2010, 11:07 AM   #67
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

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There is a very good reason why every jujutsu man, every judo man, every kendo man, every boxer, every sumo man who ever tested Ueshiba came away, 1) bested and 2) with the knowledge that what they had just encountered was entirely and completely different. These men had "been around the block a time or two", had worked with many other high level martial artists, and had some high level skills themselves. If they had encountered yet another high level jujutsu person, it would have been, same ole, same ole. It wasn't.
Yeah, I'm quoting myself to bring this point back to everyone's attention.

(I'd like to thank Peter Goldsbury who recommended the book, A Life in Aikido, to me.)

From A Life in Aikido, which is quoting part of an article by Hajime Iwata contributed to Aikido Shinbun.

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Hajime Iwata wrote:
How could I forget - it was November 1930. ... One day, to stay warm and digest our dinner, some of us decided to practice sumo. But we were defeated by Montaro Mori, a student at Tokyo University - a school better known for academic achievers than strong athletes. I was quite confident in my ability, as I had competed in sumo before the emperor while I was in high school. But Montaro Mori totally defeated me, using techniques I'd never seen before. He also defeated my friend Nagasaki from Waseda, who was a fourth dan in Judo. Montaro Mori didn't practice sumo, and he wasn't ranked in Judo. Nor was he physically big or muscular, but he easily defeated even those of us who felt quite sure of ourselves. We were curious and suspicious, and for the first time we heard the term "Aiki-jutsu."
Someone who was small and didn't study sumo or judo totally defeating those who did and were good at it. Now, if you think it was the "techniques" that did it, then why don't we have people today who can replicate this feat when they've studied techniques for 40 + years?

The answer is because no one was taught aiki.
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Old 04-03-2010, 11:23 AM   #68
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

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Aiki is maintaining self in a central equilibrium of infinite opposing spirals with no dedicated movements.
Just another quote from A Life in Aikido:

Quote:
Ueshiba Morihei wrote:
As one follows the promptings of Aiki Myo-o, assisted by the virtue of the Creator, one's breathing begins to rise in a spiral on the right, and to descend in a spiral on the left.
Take out the spiritual parts and you have contradictory spirals in the body. Up on the right while at the same time down on the left.

Now, if you add in some more information from this book ...

Quote:
Ueshiba Morihei wrote:
If you wish to apply Ki-no-Miyoyo from the foundation of this nen, be aware that the left side of the body will be the basis for Bu, while the right side will offer an opening for connection with the ki of the universe. When the links between left and right are complete, then one's movements become totally free.

As you enter the domain of unrestricted movement, agility becomes effortless - you can later your posture and movements in any way you wish, with total control. The right side will generate power, while the left supports it. Otherwise put, the left side protects the right side as it gives rise to waza.
and you search Aikiweb, you'll find someone mentioning "cross line bodywork". Right side generates while left supports. Cross line bodywork.

Put in the spirals and you start seeing where Ueshiba really is telling people how to train *aiki*, but only to those who already have a foot in the door. He sort of makes things a bit fuzzy by adding in the spiritual component, but for those with a start on training aiki, the core stuff shines through.

Course, I'm not saying the spiritual stuff is nonsense. The spiritual stuff is a topic for other threads.
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Old 04-03-2010, 11:24 AM   #69
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

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Raul Rodrigo wrote: View Post
Chris, where does the breath come in with your definition of kokyu?
Kokyu (breath/life) is the physical expression of ki.

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Old 04-03-2010, 11:30 AM   #70
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

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I think what Michael is saying is, all the kokyu in the world is not going to keep a sword from cutting you, but movement will. Further, when using a sword, one doesn't need much force to make it destroy a human body.
Aiki is built in the body, yes. But that doesn't mean one is invincible. It'd be like having aiki and using it to stop a bullet. Kind of silly.

However, if each person has a sword, then the one with aiki has an enormous advantage. The sword is merely an extension of the body, right?

High ranking kendo people studying under Ueshiba for "tai sabaki", and that didn't just mean how to move physically.

As Budd stated, once you get aiki in the body, you work on aiki with weapons as extensions of the body.

Or vice versa. Maybe it was Takeda's work with sword and spear that instilled aiki to a high quality in him? After all, it's much harder to get aiki out to the tip of a sword or spear.

EDIT: Forgot to add, yes, movement is important! I definitely agree.
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Old 04-03-2010, 11:52 AM   #71
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

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Mark Murray wrote: View Post
After all, it's much harder to get aiki out to the tip of a sword or spear.
I might be remembering incorrectly, and I'm sorry if I am, but I think i recall Toby Threadgill saying somewhere that he believes weapons work is an important way to developing an aiki body...or something akin to that.

I believe you've said something to the effect that aiki has nothing to do with the other person in the interaction (am I mistaken?)...what about when the other person is also using aiki? Isn't there at that point a kind of searching into the body of the other to find the inside track? In other words, it seems like developing an aiki body (self-oriented?) is a kind of step-one whereas applying it to another aiki body (self-other-oriented) might be a kind of step-two. Does that make sense?

Gambarimashyo!
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Old 04-03-2010, 02:22 PM   #72
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

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Kokyu (breath/life) is the physical expression of ki.
Chris, I think part of the confusion might be if you haven't been shown how ki relates to our own connections of muscle and tissue inside, how they can be conditioned and trained via breath and intent to be something unmistakably felt as an unusual kind of strength.

Then kokyu becomes the management of these internally trained facets along with optimized use of the natural forces acting upon us (gravity/ground or heaven and earth depending which schema or definition you want to use) such that we blend them in a multitude of ways. As the usage improves in strength and sophistication it is much more than good posture and alignment to the extent that it should be felt by another person when they put hands on you or even cross weapons if you're really good.

Then aiki is how you manage all that stuff and additional forces added by a training partner, opponent, etc. Viewed in that light, aikido, with it's taiso warmups/exercises/conditioning as ki/kokyu, then aikido with partner practice and waza - makes pretty good sense to me anyhoo.
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Old 04-03-2010, 03:58 PM   #73
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

Quote:
Hajime Iwata wrote:
How could I forget - it was November 1930. ... One day, to stay warm and digest our dinner, some of us decided to practice sumo. But we were defeated by Montaro Mori, a student at Tokyo University - a school better known for academic achievers than strong athletes. I was quite confident in my ability, as I had competed in sumo before the emperor while I was in high school. But Montaro Mori totally defeated me, using techniques I'd never seen before. He also defeated my friend Nagasaki from Waseda, who was a fourth dan in Judo. Montaro Mori didn't practice sumo, and he wasn't ranked in Judo. Nor was he physically big or muscular, but he easily defeated even those of us who felt quite sure of ourselves. We were curious and suspicious, and for the first time we heard the term "Aiki-jutsu."
Quote:
Mark Murray wrote:
Someone who was small and didn't study sumo or judo totally defeating those who did and were good at it. Now, if you think it was the "techniques" that did it, then why don't we have people today who can replicate this feat when they've studied techniques for 40 + years?
Well, that's a nice lttle story, but I'm not sure it points to the conclusion that you say it does.

Quote:
Ken Shamrock wrote:
How could I forget - it was 1993-94. ... One day, to stay warm and digest our dinner, some of us decided to enter the UFC. But we were defeated by Royce Gracie, a student at Tokyo University - a school better known for academic achievers than strong athletes. I was quite confident in my ability, as I had competed in Shooto before the emperor while I was in high school. But Royce Gracie totally defeated me, using techniques I'd never seen before. He also defeated my friend Dan Severn from Michigan, who was an Olympic level Greco-Roman wrestler. Royce Gracie didn't practice Shooto, and he wasn't a nationally recognized wrestler. Nor was he physically big or muscular, but he easily defeated even those of us who felt quite sure of ourselves, including Kimo. We were curious and suspicious, and for the first time we heard the term "Brazilian Jiu Jitsu."
Obviously, Ken Shamrock didn't say that.

-Michael
"Through aiki we can feel the mind of the enemy who comes to attack and are thus able to respond immediately." - M. Mochizuki
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Old 04-03-2010, 04:00 PM   #74
Michael Varin
Dojo: Aikido of Fresno
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 567
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

How is "aiki" used in a sword fight?

How does it benefit the user?

-Michael
"Through aiki we can feel the mind of the enemy who comes to attack and are thus able to respond immediately." - M. Mochizuki
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Old 04-03-2010, 04:05 PM   #75
MM
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 1,996
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Re: Internal Power (AIKI?)-- Players and Haters

Quote:
Matthew Gano wrote: View Post
I might be remembering incorrectly, and I'm sorry if I am, but I think i recall Toby Threadgill saying somewhere that he believes weapons work is an important way to developing an aiki body...or something akin to that.
Can't argue with that.

Quote:
Matthew Gano wrote: View Post
I believe you've said something to the effect that aiki has nothing to do with the other person in the interaction (am I mistaken?)...what about when the other person is also using aiki? Isn't there at that point a kind of searching into the body of the other to find the inside track? In other words, it seems like developing an aiki body (self-oriented?) is a kind of step-one whereas applying it to another aiki body (self-other-oriented) might be a kind of step-two. Does that make sense?
Well, once I actually have an aiki body and can use it dynamically against someone else using aiki, I'll be able to test those theories.

I'm told that aiki to aiki is an entirely different thing than aiki to non-aiki. But, even then, I think it's still more about what you're doing internally.
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