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Old 05-21-2002, 09:30 AM   #1
virginia_kyu
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Smile The word "Aikidoka", does it annoy you?

hello all, I am a beginner in Aikido and I love it so far but there is just one thing that bothers me, the word "Aikidoka".

There is just something about how it sounds that really annoys me, anyone else?

PS: Please don't take me too seriouisly.

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Old 05-21-2002, 09:34 AM   #2
akiy
 
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You'll find some discussion on the term "aikidoka" here:

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showth...&threadid=1434

-- Jun

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Old 05-21-2002, 09:44 AM   #3
tedehara
 
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Re: The word "Aikidoka", does it annoy you?

Quote:
Originally posted by virginia_kyu
hello all, I am a beginner in Aikido and I love it so far but there is just one thing that bothers me, the word "Aikidoka".

There is just something about how it sounds that really annoys me, anyone else?

PS: Please don't take me too seriouisly.
YEAH!

Aikidoka has bothered me too. Sounds too much like Oh Key Doe Key and other idiomatic American/English phrases. I generally use the word Aikidoist, but I appear to be in the minority on this.

It is not practice that makes perfect, it is correct practice that makes perfect.
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Old 05-21-2002, 03:16 PM   #4
Choku Tsuki
 
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Re: The word "Aikidoka", does it annoy you?

Quote:
Originally posted by virginia_kyu
...there is just one thing that bothers me, the word "Aikidoka...
PS: Please don't take me too seriously.
I prefer "aiki-dorka" because that's how I felt working around outside in my keiko gi (which was not by choice).

--Chuck
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Old 05-21-2002, 06:58 PM   #5
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Aikidoka is much easier to say than other terms. Like Aikidoist or something. HEY! I just wrote something like this on the e-budo website!

Robyn
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Old 05-21-2002, 08:47 PM   #6
virginia_kyu
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I would like to start a petition drive to end the use of Aikidoka for the following reasons.

1) Apparently the term "ka" implies a profession in the art so unless you make your living doing Aikido you are not an Aikidoka, Thank God!

2) Aikidoka simply sounds ridiculous

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Old 05-21-2002, 09:44 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by virginia_kyu

2) Aikidoka simply sounds ridiculous
I would say that this only applies to non Japanese or non Japanese speakers. As a Japanese speaker, I don`t think it sounds ridiculous at all, and it rolls off the tongue quite well. Unless you mean sounds ridiculous in the context that it is being used i.e. point 1.?

As far as use and meaning goes, when I think about it, I can only recall hearing it used in the west. With "ka" indicating profession, it does seem a bit strange to use it to refer to someone who practices Aikido, having said that, there are lot more Japanese words that have been bastardised through the transfer of martial arts to the west Hell, we even have problems with plain English transferred between England and America . I don`t think it`s anything to get upset about though, in the grand scheme of things.

When one of my Japanese Sensei sends me e-mail, he always asks me when am I going to come and play aikido with him. Does that make me an Aikido player?

A difficult problem is easily solved by asking yourself the question, "Just how would the Lone Ranger handle this?"
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Old 05-21-2002, 10:31 PM   #8
Largo
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Personally, I think mixing the japanese and english is would be more annoying (however, if that was my biggest problem in aikido, I'd be grateful). Would we be "aikido-ists"? "aikido-ers"? As far as I know, the suffix -ka is not just something for professionals. At work, because I usually study a lot, some of my co-workers refer to me as a benkyo-ka (study-er I guess) despite not being a professional student. My school's kendo and judo clubs regularly use kendo-ka and judo-ka, despite the fact that they are jr.high kids and definitely not professionals.
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Old 05-22-2002, 03:13 AM   #9
Mr. P
 
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Thumbs down

And how about calling ourselves "Jedi" ?
I've seen some in a movie : their looking is sooooo amazing !! Moreover, they were working in restoring harmony, weren't they ?
Though, I'm afraid a light-bokken is far less impressive ...

Just forget that stupid joke , I've been working since 04h00 AM ...

Last edited by Mr. P : 05-22-2002 at 03:18 AM.

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Old 05-22-2002, 03:30 AM   #10
Mr. P
 
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Cool

(A little) more seriously ...
In French, "Aļkidoist" is a kind hard to pronounce and we need to articulate more (sorry, I'm a bit lazy sometimes ).

Since Aļkidoka (or Aļkidoist, or Aļkido-er), or anything else seems it does not satisfy anyone, why don't we call ourselves Aļkido buddies ? A little more festive !

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Old 05-22-2002, 03:31 AM   #11
Kami
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Question AIKIDOIST OR AIKIDOKA?

Quote:
Originally posted by virginia_kyu
I would like to start a petition drive to end the use of Aikidoka for the following reasons.
1) Apparently the term "ka" implies a profession in the art so unless you make your living doing Aikido you are not an Aikidoka, Thank God!
KAMI : No. The term KA implies "a student", not "a professional", in the sense you mean.

Quote:
Originally posted by virginia_kyu
2) Aikidoka simply sounds ridiculous
KAMI : People think and feel differently, Thank God! I like "Aikidoka" and find "Aikidoist" simply insufferable...
But I also believe in the motto "To each his own"...
Best

"We are all teachers, and what we teach is what we need to learn, and so we teach it over and over again until we learn it".
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Old 05-22-2002, 05:08 AM   #12
aikilouis
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Let's all put red cloaks on and call ourselves Aikidoman and aikido girl !
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Old 05-22-2002, 08:17 AM   #13
Misogi-no-Gyo
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Aikido-hugh?

...perhaps another take on this?

In my studies with Seiseki Abe Shihan, he has shoewn me an interesting way of revealing much about complex, Japanese cultural terms. Like in the west, he dissects a word into its syllables, breaking it down into components.

My own thoughts on the word Aikidoka is as follows:

The suffix, "KA" as many have pointed out, means "one who studies." However, one of its more typical usages is when you are forming a question. For example "iimasuka?" meaning does it exist, or is it existing? Another example would be, aikido wo shitai desuka? meaning Do you like to do aikido?

So what we have is a suffix that denotes the asking of a question. This could mean that Aikidoka could also be looked at as one who is inquiring into what is "aikido"

Any thoughts on this view of the word?

That would be an example of the way that Abe Sensei breaks down many of the complexities in Kojiki. For those who may be interested, here is an example from an interview he did many years ago...

Quote:
Take the idea of Ame no Minakanushi. Someone given to a religious perspective would probably view Ama no Minakanushi as a specific deity to be worshipped. But as an modern Doctor of Medicine, Futaki Sensei avoided this kind of idolatry. Instead of talking about such things in terms of kotodama, he interpreted them in more modern language. His interpretation of Ame no Minakanushi, for example, went like this:@Ame,@literally meaning "heavenly" or "divine," is simply a term of respect; no is a simple grammatical connector; Mi is a respectful prefix. That leaves naka (center, middle) and nushi (lord, holder of). He felt, therefore, that Ame no Minakanushi does not represent some specific deity observing us from some divine perspective in the cosmos, but that it refers instead to the very first ancestor of our nation who, according to Futaki Sensei, taught the idea of "the importance of the center" (the center being something that every living human being has)." Understand that center and cherish it" was his interpretation. He spoke of aikido as being circular movement, saying that one must find the center and lead all into the circles that surround it.
Here is the full interview---------> Seiseki Abe Sensei Interview

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Old 05-22-2002, 08:24 AM   #14
virginia_kyu
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Re: AIKIDOIST OR AIKIDOKA?

Quote:
Originally posted by Kami


KAMI : No. The term KA implies "a student", not "a professional", in the sense you mean.



KAMI : People think and feel differently, Thank God! I like "Aikidoka" and find "Aikidoist" simply insufferable...
But I also believe in the motto "To each his own"...
Best
Well I find AikiDORKA insufferable as well, everytime I hear someone say it in class I cringe. I think I would rather hear fingernails scratching on a chalkboard.

-- Michael Neal
-- http://www.theaikidolink.dnsdyn.net/
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Old 05-22-2002, 08:29 AM   #15
akiy
 
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Re: Aikido-hugh?

Quote:
Originally posted by Misogi-no-Gyo
The suffix, "KA" as many have pointed out, means "one who studies." However, one of its more typical usages is when you are forming a question. For example "iimasuka?" meaning does it exist, or is it existing? Another example would be, aikido wo shitai desuka? meaning Do you like to do aikido?

So what we have is a suffix that denotes the asking of a question. This could mean that Aikidoka could also be looked at as one who is inquiring into what is "aikido"

Any thoughts on this view of the word?
Sounds like it's more like wordplay than etymology to me.

The "ka" suffix isn't just to denote a question but, probably more precisely, the existence of its precedent. So, in a question like "wakarimasuka," the person is asking whether "wakarimasu" ("understand") is existent in yourself.

The "ka" suffix also comes after verbs. When it's suffixed onto a noun, it's usually a question of whether if something is something else (as in, "Is it aikido?"). If the verb in a Japanese sentence is missing, it's usually understood to be "desu" (basically, "to be"). So, your Japanese friend upon hearing you tell jokes may ask (jokingly) something like, "omae nanda -- komedian ka?" which can basically mean something like, "Dude, what are you, a comedian?"

(Sorry to be picky here, but I think "aikido wo shitai desuka" translates more closely to "would you like to do aikido?" "Do you like to do aikido" would probably be closer to "aikido wo suru no ha suki desuka" or "aikido ha shumi desuka"...)

Ubaldo, where did you get the information that the -ka suffix denotes a student? At least in the everyday Japanese language that I've used (and my aikido teacher who is Japanese also agrees, at least), the -ka suffix denotes more a profession than just being a student of the art. One would never say, "watashi ha sakka desu" (I am a writer) when s/he doesn't write for a living...

-- Jun

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Old 05-22-2002, 09:11 AM   #16
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Maybe we could do a link with our own (kind of) language, couldn't we ?

Indeed, in french for example, we have "pompiste" (filling station attendant) and "flūtiste" (flutist).
In one hand, we have someone who earns his living. In the other hand, we have someone who plays.
So, we use the suffix -iste as "the one who does", a kind of mix between "the one who studies" and "the one who works"...

I'm sure we could (if I make no mistake ) compare english words in the same way.
So, I think it might be the same in japanese, although I find the previous explanation interesting...

What do you think about it ?

Mr. P

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Old 05-22-2002, 11:12 AM   #17
AikiAlf
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Hey if we're Anglicizing then we should be
"Wayofharmonywithuniversalenergy-ists"
or according to a more secular interpretation
"accommodationtocircumstance-ists"

Aikidoka may sound funny in English but in the Romance languages it sounds ok. Maybe that's why Aikidoist jars my mind.

And how about the other MA Ka's ; would you be comfortable talking about Karateists, and Judoists?
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Old 05-22-2002, 11:31 AM   #18
SeiserL
 
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IMHO, while we are at it, I think we should be able to spell phonetic phonetically.

Until again,

Lynn
Nidan Tenshinkai Aikido
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Lynn Seiser PhD
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Old 05-22-2002, 12:52 PM   #19
Jim ashby
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I agree with Lynn. BTW what does onomatopoeia sound like?
Have fun.

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Old 05-22-2002, 10:24 PM   #20
Largo
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Quote:
one of its more typical usages is when you are forming a question.
This is a goofy little point...but here goes. They are completely different words.
The -ka that denotes doer or -ist is written in kanji (it's the same one for house). The -ka for a question is a completely different word (and as far as I know) doesn't have a kanji. Japanese has tons of words that sound or seem alike. Take the words for husband and prisoner- both are Shujin, but have different kanji
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Old 05-22-2002, 10:57 PM   #21
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Language definitions are a bit outside of my league, so I took the option of asking a couple of my co-workers, one of whom used to be a karateka, the other a kendoka. They told me that ka (kanji (‰Ę) - "ie" meaning house) denotes master or professional, a level lower than Shihan, but could also denote practicioner. Whilst they had heard the terms karateka, judoka and kendoka, Aikidoka was unusual, although they couldn`t say that it was incorrect.

They also informed me that you could refer to yourself as a Karateka or judoka if asked.

I also asked in the abscence of the word aikidoka, what one would call someone who did aikido. The suggestion was aikidojin (aikido person or person following the path of aikido), the logic being that there are karatedojin, kendojin judojin etc.

I just looked up aikidoka on one of the online dictionaries and it translates as aikido practicioner.

Whilst none of this is conclusive, it does suggest that aikidoka may be an incorrect term in the way we use it, although not an incorrect term in the way that it is said.

I will broach this at the dojo tonight to see if anyone else has any thoughts.

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Old 05-23-2002, 02:28 AM   #22
Mr. P
 
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You're right !!
I can't imagine calling myself the way AļkiAlf showed .
But, it may have a spiritual meaning (I can't find another word).

Perhaps, Senseļs wanted their disciples to vow their life to the Budo. We may not forget some lived in their senseļ's dojo. So, they couldn't do a job .
I think the suffix -ka is a way to show that a budoka is fully concerned by his/her training.

It may be an explanation why we find -ka means it's a job.
Don't you think so ?

Mr. P

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Old 05-23-2002, 08:38 AM   #23
Bruce Baker
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Words /as time goes by

You know, the rules about words are really just the drug induced meanderings of some crusty old perfessor ....

If you want to review, some comedy by George Carlin or even most comedy clubs should suffice ... what was new, articulate ten years ago is now stale and under the mat, while the old comedy of forty years ago is making a comeback in its older comedianes and word context, go figure?

Point being.

As you learn more and more about the Japanese culture, and become familiar with words and terms, they will seem to be second nature.

They are merely tools to understand the verbal ideas of others, whether correctly stated in words or not ... our words are the attempt to put ideas into sound.

Hey, how funny do foreigners sound when speaking in your hometown? Do you think your pronunciation sounds any better to them?

Get over it.

Oh-ki-doe-ki?

Just kidding.

Better than Ai-Ki-I-ee-I-oh! And on this farm ...
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Old 05-23-2002, 03:31 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally posted by AikiAlf
Hey if we're Anglicizing then we should be
"Wayofharmonywithuniversalenergy-ists"
or according to a more secular interpretation
"accommodationtocircumstance-ists"
I think this answers the question perfectly.

blessings,

~ Mona
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Old 05-23-2002, 05:26 PM   #25
Kami
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Unhappy Re: Aikidoka ?

Quote:
Originally posted by akiy
Ubaldo, where did you get the information that the -ka suffix denotes a student? At least in the everyday Japanese language that I've used (and my aikido teacher who is Japanese also agrees, at least), the -ka suffix denotes more a profession than just being a student of the art. One would never say, "watashi ha sakka desu" (I am a writer) when s/he doesn't write for a living...
Jun
KAMI : Point taken and accepted, Jun San! What I really intended to say was that the term Aikidoka might imply a "student". At least, that's how the term has been used by many people in the West. In Japan, we have a serious problem. Japanese is a language not given to precise meanings. Every term has many meanings, sometimes even opposite one to the other. Just take a look here :
###########################################

[quote]
LARGO : The -ka that denotes doer or -ist is written in kanji (it's the same one for house). The -ka for a question is a completely different word (and as far as I know) doesn't have a kanji. Japanese has tons of words that sound or seem alike.

PETER REHSE : The kanji has many pronounciations but ie and ka are the main ones. Meanings include home and profession, not student. However, it could refer to an intensive experienced practitioner (not a beginner) BUT if you use it about yourself (outside of making a joke) it could be understood as being boastful. I guess its somewhat like sensei or san, you would never use it when describing yourself although others may use it when referring to you. My friend said he considered me an Aikidoka but as I said in a previous post, based on people I know who are truely dedicated I don't think that is right.

WILLIAM KINCAID : actually I have heard from my Japanese instructor that...the ka suffix can mean profession but also could mean a "doer" of something. when we practiced speaking he always made us say "Boku wa Juudoo o shimasu." "Boku wa Aikidoo o Renshuu Shimasu". "Boku wa Karatedo o Benkyoo shimasu." however with the last two a japanese person might look at you strange, but that response would be far better than if you said Boku wa Aikidoo o asobimasu. when I said it one time he looked at me and said, "Anata wa Aikidoo to Juudoo to Jyodoo o Asobi janai." he then stated, "RIAMUsan. Anata wa Aikidoo to Juudoo to Jyodoo o Shimasu."
Personally when I address my Students in Juudoo I call them Juudooka. I just find saying I am a Judo player is akin to saying I am an X-Box player, we happen to be a whole lot more than mere players

BRYAN BATEMAN : Language definitions are a bit outside of my league, so I took the option of asking a couple of my co-workers, one of whom used to be a karateka, the other a kendoka. They told me that ka (kanji (‰Ę) - "ie" meaning house) denotes master or professional, a level lower than Shihan, but could also denote practicioner. Whilst they had heard the terms karateka, judoka and kendoka, Aikidoka was unusual, although they couldn`t say that it was incorrect.
They also informed me that you could refer to yourself as a Karateka or judoka if asked.
I also asked in the abscence of the word aikidoka, what one would call someone who did aikido. The suggestion was aikidojin (aikido person or person following the path of aikido), the logic being that there are karatedojin, kendojin judojin etc.
I just looked up aikidoka on one of the online dictionaries and it translates as aikido practicioner.

MARK FEIGENBAUM : In Japan, most don't use the term judoka until 4-dan or 5-dan. It may be later than that, depending on competitive activity, which is generally halted at godan, which means you deserve rokudan. After that, you had better live to a ripe old age. An older judoka (he's about 93 this year), was just bumped a grade from the Kodokan. Since he was graded to sandan by Kano himself when he was still in Seattle, I'd say he is a judoka. Before that, it is judoshugyosha. The term judoka mainly comes from Europe and Mikonosuke Kawaishi. In Kawaishi's book, Les Katas Complet de Judo (translated into English by EJ Harrison, The Seven Katas of Judo, states that in Japan, the term judoka is only used by the very experienced, but in France we use the term for all who practice judo). [END QUOTE]
#############################################

I'll keep pestering some friends of mine and if I hear anything new, I'll let you know. At this moment, it seems I was wrong, as long as japanese language can determine wrongness.
Anyway, I learn a lot.
Thank you

Last edited by Kami : 05-23-2002 at 05:30 PM.

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