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Old 01-20-2011, 05:26 AM   #26
Carsten Möllering
 
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Re: My Rope Theory

Sorry, OT
Quote:
Carina Reinhardt wrote: View Post
... our teacher Frank Noel in our last seminar
Is he the teacher of your teacher?
So if you are connected with Frank Noel we are not so far apart from another.
We also belong to the line of tradition influenced by Yamaguchi sensei. With Christian Tissier and Endo Seishiro as our shihan.

I watched a video of Yamaguchi sensei just two days ago with Fank as one of his uke. And I attended seminars with him back in the late 1990s here Germany.
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Old 01-20-2011, 05:52 AM   #27
carina reinhardt
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Re: My Rope Theory

You watched that videohttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JkLoS...layer_embedded
I went to 3 seminars with Ch. Tissier also in Wegimont, Koeln and Malaga.. Yes our Aikido is similar
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Old 01-20-2011, 06:04 AM   #28
phitruong
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Re: My Rope Theory

Quote:
Nicholas Eschenbruch wrote: View Post
"Dear Ellis,
Enclosed is the Mouldy Rope. You are hereby dubbed Knight of the Mouldy Rope. An ancient order it is not, a noble rectitude is not found among its members, thee and me, time-hallowed rituals have we none. The Mouldy Rope may be worn about the person to affix the trou, used as a trivet for hot vessels, for binding jaws of dragons slain or captive, for a little B & D action with the ladies. When lost, burned or otherwise irretrievably engaged, the MR may be substituted for by something else. New knights and ladies may be appointed subject to unanimous assent of all Knights of MR, but sparingly. Big tits alone, shall not constitute grounds fo admission, but certain levies, tithes and assessments shall be waived upon their presentation for inspection to the examination board.
Yours truly,
Terry Dobson, KMR"
thanks nicholas for this reminder. i remembered seeing terry dobson video teaching aikido with a twisted rope made out of leather which we called the whip. i think i have found another role model in terry dobson, much wisdom to found.
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Old 01-20-2011, 07:02 AM   #29
phitruong
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Re: My Rope Theory

Quote:
Carina Reinhardt wrote: View Post
The moral of the story is that there may be some truth to what someone says. Sometimes we can see that truth and sometimes not because they may have different perspective which we may not agree too. So, rather than arguing like the blind men, we should say, "Maybe you have your reasons."[/i]
Maybe now you might understand it better. Each branch of aikido sees his line like the blind men each part of the elephant. So everybody is right and see his own truth
opinions aren't truth. like the blind men, each gave his/her/its opinion based on his/her/its experiences. every opinion is valid to that particular individual. truth can only be one (off with his head! ).

besides, there is no truth and that's the truth.
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Old 01-20-2011, 07:23 AM   #30
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Re: My Rope Theory

Quote:
Phi Truong wrote: View Post
opinions aren't truth. like the blind men, each gave his/her/its opinion based on his/her/its experiences. every opinion is valid to that particular individual. truth can only be one (off with his head! ).

besides, there is no truth and that's the truth.
Maybe you have your reasons.
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Old 01-20-2011, 07:39 AM   #31
Amir Krause
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Re: My Rope Theory

Quote:
Graham Christian wrote: View Post

Imagine the whole of Aikido, all organizations, all styles, all individuals are all part of one rope called Aikido.

Now every individual is a strand of that rope.

As I see it you can then look at Aikido as a whole and see what makes it stronger and what makes it potentially a weak rope.
If the strands argue and fight each other for example then it is not good for the rope.
You assume that there is an entity "Aikido" which has a general state.

In my view, Aikido is a skill belonging to people. My Aikido is only indirectly affected by yours. And there is no encompassing combined entity.

Therefore, I should not care for your Aikido, except for it's effect on mine, which may be related to the impression of Aikido by the genral public (or future sutdents) you provide, or, much more important - related to the ideas you write about, and which I could utilize.

Amir
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Old 01-20-2011, 11:42 AM   #32
jonreading
 
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Re: My Rope Theory

Whenever I start to hear the ol' "let's stick together" thing, I always question, why? Why do you want to tie your aikido to my aikido?

In the analogy, the argument seems to be a advocation to create a stasis situation, removing frictional dialog between individuals, factions or dojo. Why is this desireable?

Aikido is a skillset. The integrity of the art is dependent upon the competency prevelant within it. I think it both healthy and natural that aikido should have frictional dialogue and a natural purging operation or else the strands of rope begin to constrict each other.
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Old 01-20-2011, 11:53 AM   #33
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Re: My Rope Theory

Quote:
Jon Reading wrote: View Post
Whenever I start to hear the ol' "let's stick together" thing, I always question, why?
When you consider that calls for unity are often followed by a generous offer (from the same source) to lead the unified masses, I think you have your answer.
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Old 01-20-2011, 01:59 PM   #34
graham christian
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Re: My Rope Theory

Quote:
Jon Reading wrote: View Post
Whenever I start to hear the ol' "let's stick together" thing, I always question, why? Why do you want to tie your aikido to my aikido?

In the analogy, the argument seems to be a advocation to create a stasis situation, removing frictional dialog between individuals, factions or dojo. Why is this desireable?

Aikido is a skillset. The integrity of the art is dependent upon the competency prevelant within it. I think it both healthy and natural that aikido should have frictional dialogue and a natural purging operation or else the strands of rope begin to constrict each other.
Hi Jon, interesting interpretation. As I see it I posed the question what would make it weaker and the question what would make it stronger? No stasis there that I can see.

In fact I would say that on chatsites that have lot's of abusive stuff on them etc. have 'threads' leaving them and avoiding them whereas ones that have more intertesting discussions are more successful and thus attract more 'threads.' Thus the rope becomes greater both in size and quality. Pretty obvious really.

In my experience it is the negative people who through their own paranoia say we must stick together whilst the more stable positive people wonder why we all can't just get along and respect each other.

Regards. G.
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Old 01-20-2011, 02:12 PM   #35
graham christian
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Re: My Rope Theory

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
When you consider that calls for unity are often followed by a generous offer (from the same source) to lead the unified masses, I think you have your answer.
Think that's been done already. Some fella called O'Sensei.
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Old 01-20-2011, 02:14 PM   #36
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Re: My Rope Theory

Quote:
Graham Christian wrote: View Post
In my experience it is the negative people who through their own paranoia say we must stick together whilst the more stable positive people wonder why we all can't just get along and respect each other.
Hi Graham,

That's an interesting choice of words -- some people might say that "stick together" and "just get along" are pretty much the same thing, but clearly you see a significant difference between the two points of view. I think that's an interesting line of thought. Can you talk more about the distinction?

Thanks,
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Old 01-20-2011, 02:52 PM   #37
graham christian
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Re: My Rope Theory

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
Hi Graham,

That's an interesting choice of words -- some people might say that "stick together" and "just get along" are pretty much the same thing, but clearly you see a significant difference between the two points of view. I think that's an interesting line of thought. Can you talk more about the distinction?

Thanks,
Hi Mary. Certainly.

I'll start with an analogy or two. Take a husband and wife who have reasons to present themselves as a happy couple or if you include the children as a happy family and yet theydon't get along at all. It's all a front.

Take a group of politicions who present the image of getting along in public yet in reality?

In both analogies they are sticking together yet in truth they don't actually get along or even respect each other.

For them I would say that's quite a 'sticky' and uncomfortable position.

Regards. G.
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Old 01-20-2011, 02:54 PM   #38
C. David Henderson
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Re: My Rope Theory

Quote:
Graham Christian wrote: View Post
Think that's been done already. Some fella called O'Sensei.
Really, when did he do that?

David Henderson
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Old 01-20-2011, 03:01 PM   #39
graham christian
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Re: My Rope Theory

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Charles David Henderson wrote: View Post
Really, when did he do that?
Is he not source of the rope called Aikido?
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Old 01-20-2011, 03:36 PM   #40
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Re: My Rope Theory

First, that's not what you said -- you said he already "done" what Mary described as making a generous offer to lead the unified masses after making a call for unity.

Second, he is called O Sensei for self-evident reasons.

Third, his role in the international expansion of Aikido, as I recall it, was not a call to unify the aikido world. In fact, that expansion began when "aikido" was still fairly "unified." As often happens, with success comes bickering.

As for the rope analogy -- it's got a nice egalitarian ring to it, but you haven't addressed Jon's point about "integrity of the art" being "dependent upon the competency prevelant within."

That's why I see the tree metaphor as a bit different. If you cut a limb from a tree and stuck it in the ground, which do you think more likely -- that the tree will grow a new limb, or that the limb will sprout roots of its own (granted both are possible)?

Not that I'm saying one image is "truer" than another, btw.

David Henderson
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Old 01-20-2011, 04:13 PM   #41
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Re: My Rope Theory

Quote:
Graham Christian wrote: View Post
Is he not source of the rope called Aikido?
Graham, my comment was sort of tongue in cheek. What I was saying was that those who call for "unity" often have ulterior motives -- a common one being perhaps best expressed as, "Everybody get into line and follow me and do what I say!" In other words, those who want to take charge of others often call for "unity" as a way of creating a herd all marching in the same direction, and then try to take charge of the direction of the herd.
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Old 01-20-2011, 05:04 PM   #42
Demetrio Cereijo
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Re: My Rope Theory

Or at least feel themselves validated because everybody does the same thing. A billion sheep can't be wrong. It's one of these "universal truths".

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Old 01-20-2011, 05:56 PM   #43
graham christian
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Re: My Rope Theory

Quote:
Charles David Henderson wrote: View Post
First, that's not what you said -- you said he already "done" what Mary described as making a generous offer to lead the unified masses after making a call for unity.

Second, he is called O Sensei for self-evident reasons.

Third, his role in the international expansion of Aikido, as I recall it, was not a call to unify the aikido world. In fact, that expansion began when "aikido" was still fairly "unified." As often happens, with success comes bickering.

As for the rope analogy -- it's got a nice egalitarian ring to it, but you haven't addressed Jon's point about "integrity of the art" being "dependent upon the competency prevelant within."

That's why I see the tree metaphor as a bit different. If you cut a limb from a tree and stuck it in the ground, which do you think more likely -- that the tree will grow a new limb, or that the limb will sprout roots of its own (granted both are possible)?

Not that I'm saying one image is "truer" than another, btw.
Hi David.

First, yes I did and that's what I meant. He did indeed make a call for unity and indeed the way of harmony many times after the second world war and then generously in my opinion offered Aikido as a way which he led.

O'Sensei title as being self evident? (not sure what you're getting at there)

As for answering that part of what Jon said then I take it you agree with it? Anyway, for both you and him I shall try.

Jons point on integrity of the art and being dependent on the competency prevalent within I agree with as it is a pretty self- evidential statement but frictional discourse? How about non-frictional? To differenciate here I mean debate rather than argument. Debate can get a little frictional but argument is completely frictional.

If Jon meant it this way then I agree. If he didn't then that's also good for it's just two different viewpoints, no big deal.

Hope this clears up your 'concerns'

To say one more thing here. If your style of cutting out and presenting sentences and bits of sentences is your way of getting an understanding of what was meant then it is welcome and maybe it reflects you are quite a good swordsman.(hee,hee)
If it is just a method to try and make wrong it's a waste of a good talent.

Regards. G.
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Old 01-20-2011, 05:57 PM   #44
graham christian
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Re: My Rope Theory

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
Graham, my comment was sort of tongue in cheek. What I was saying was that those who call for "unity" often have ulterior motives -- a common one being perhaps best expressed as, "Everybody get into line and follow me and do what I say!" In other words, those who want to take charge of others often call for "unity" as a way of creating a herd all marching in the same direction, and then try to take charge of the direction of the herd.
Apologies Mary.

Regards.G.
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Old 01-20-2011, 07:30 PM   #45
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Re: My Rope Theory

After he suffered a stroke, Ram Das talked about words being like a closet of clothes, but being unable to pick the right ones with which to clothe his thoughts. (I've been told this is not an uncommon kind of feeling for people who've had a stroke.)

When an idea is important enough to be debated, it is important enough to be clothed in words that fairly and accurately present it.

Well, that would be my argument, at least.

David Henderson
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Old 01-20-2011, 07:37 PM   #46
graham christian
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Re: My Rope Theory

Well put David. I agree.
Regards.g.
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Old 01-21-2011, 11:08 AM   #47
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Re: My Rope Theory

Let me see if I can clarify what I said earlier...

My main point is that I become personally concerned whenever I hear dialogue that centers around removing differing opinion. Graham's initial post contains an advocation to remove argument and fighting from aikido; arguments that I assume include training curriculum, use of weapons, stylistic alterations, and fighting effectiveness, to name a few. While I may not agree with those who oppose my perspectives, I do not believe I have a right [ever] to remove that opposing perspective. Opposing parties may argue and debate issues in a positive and constructive manner; I do not think it fair to cite the poor presentation of an argument or the poor ethics employed during debate as a cause to remove the dialogue. As such, I also do not tend to support the "can't we all just get along" stuff either. As Graham cites, people tend to consolidate around those who share similar values, beliefs and opinions. Those who don't like what they read or see in one setting have the opportunity to change that setting to one more desirable. This is both an expression of freedom and an expression of prejudice.

Secondly, I do not believe "more is better" in aikido. I do not believe the art's integrity will perservere with more people practicing at a lower quality. Contigent upon my first point, the role of frictional debate and argument is to identify and purge those practices and practicioners ill-suited to the preservation of aikido. The pressure of accountibility, education, and evaluation helps to control the presence of poor aikido. Without pressure to maintain quality withing the art, eventually the art will become ineffective; some would argue that is currently happening. Ledyard sensei just posted a great thread that touches upon the issue of balancing the essence of aikido with the expansion of student body.

Ultimately, I believe my training is my own and not subjective to a larger group; it is mine to pursue with the vigor and energy that I put into it and under the authority of the instructor under whom I wish to train. I am not training to make the rope bigger or smaller or stronger ro weaker, I am training to make myself better and preserve the intergity of the aikido I learned from my instructor. In this sense I think it less important to worry about what everyone else is doing and more about what I am doing. There is no rope if after 15 years I still cannot do aikido; it is no consolation to me that if after 15 years of aikido there are others who cannot do aikido either. I see no reason to tie my aikido to yours...

Last edited by jonreading : 01-21-2011 at 11:17 AM.
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Old 01-21-2011, 11:47 AM   #48
graham christian
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Re: My Rope Theory

Jon, well put, and well articulated. I will only say this: As I see it in the analogy given I don't mean it as therefore ones Aikido encroaches on anothers in fact quite the contrary.

If you are a 'strand' then you are to do and progress and better youself and maybe even become a master in your own strand. I'm sure you must like the old kung fu movies where you got masters of the snake, eagle, drunkenfist etc and it gave the impression of all those different strands of the one 'rope' or umbrella of kung fu.

The wise masters were always compassionate and respectful towards other strands yet then along would come one arrogant strand and decide it was the rope or decide it was superior and had to prove it by getting rid of other strands.

Regards. G.
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Old 01-22-2011, 05:21 PM   #49
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Re: My Rope Theory

Quote:
Graham Christian wrote: View Post
Jon, well put, and well articulated. I will only say this: As I see it in the analogy given I don't mean it as therefore ones Aikido encroaches on anothers in fact quite the contrary.

If you are a 'strand' then you are to do and progress and better youself and maybe even become a master in your own strand. I'm sure you must like the old kung fu movies where you got masters of the snake, eagle, drunkenfist etc and it gave the impression of all those different strands of the one 'rope' or umbrella of kung fu.

The wise masters were always compassionate and respectful towards other strands yet then along would come one arrogant strand and decide it was the rope or decide it was superior and had to prove it by getting rid of other strands.

Regards. G.
Hi Graham,
I think that it's always a good idea to try to remove the judgment and personalization that often attends these exchanges. But the "it's all ok" doesn't work for me either. I certainly don't think it was ever true that there was a large degree of tolerance for new ideas or new forms within the martial arts community. In the old days you absolutely had to back up your stuff, When O-Sensei started the Ueshiba Juku, he had all sorts of people come in and challenge him. In those days this was a survival issue. If a challenger came into your dojo and beat you up in front of your students, they'd leave. It would close your school. Look how many martial arts movies are based on the scenario. It was serious business.

I have a very inclusive view of many of these things. I have heard any number of teachers say "This is the proper way to do kotegaeshi". These same folks often have no agreement about what that is and believe that the others are wrong. Since my own teacher doesn't believe that Aikido has any set form and therefore no "style", I have almost always found that I have practiced the version being shown by a given teacher and found it worked fine. I alos find that the other teacher's technique worked as well. So these "thou shall do this, thous shalt not to that" are a bit silly. I actually had the experience of drilling a certain Japanese Aikido practitioner into the mat (after he couldn't do the technique on me) and having him get up and proceed to correct me on how to do it. He was personal friends with the current doshu and that seemed to mean he knew better than I did, despite the fact of his rapid descent to the mat when i did the technique.

But there is still bad Aikido. It is not "all good". Ropes or strands are great if they have value. They can actually be dangerous when they are false or too weak. Katatetori tenkan has to work if someone's "strand" is to be respected. When it doesn't work, it isn't worthy respect as a strand. The person should have respect if he's a good person, but good people do bad Aikido all the time.

This is martial arts. The bottom line is whether you can walk your talk on the mat. I'm not even saying on the street... simply within the dojo paradigm. And there is simply a lot of Aikido that doesn't function at that level. People are teaching who cannot do an irimi if you really try to hit them with shomen uchi or tsuki. They cannot do their kihon waza if you grab them and don't collude.

So, no, I do not think we need to just do the "it's all ok and it's all good" thing here. Some of it is and some of it isn't. Folks can work out for themselves which is which and if they can't from the discussions, they can by going to play with the folks who are posting and find out. The discussions serve to create movement in people's thinking. Sure folks will always gravitate towards the folks with like viewpoints. That is human nature and we are hard wired that way. But the process of listening to people going back and forth lets people think about what they themselves believe. I often find people who come away feeling that both parties in a given argument had a point, and that is great too.

The civility thing is important because folks leave the forums when things get too vituperous. But frankly, it's really suicide in the long run for folks who can't stay civil because if they are butt heads, on the internet, they are internationally known butt heads. There's one particular character who was actually thrown off Aikido Journal forums who is know throughout the whole English speaking world as a butt head. It's an amazing achievement and would never have been possible before the internet. So there is karmic pay back for folks who refuse to behave.

But it isn't uncivil or disrespectful to state that you think someone's opinion is wrong or that something he's put up on a video simply wouldn't work. I've put stuff up here and had folks not "get it". Some folks might and some folks won't. As long as folks stay basically polite, they are welcome to tell me it's bs in their opinion. I am fine with that. If they get rude, they get an invitation to come to my dojo and play. So far no one has shown up for that option. But I think that is the bottom line. For every great martial arts teacher I know, there is a line. Cross that line and they will show you that they can do what they say. Smart folks typically don't push it that far. For some teachers it takes a lot of dissing to get to that point. For others, any dissing at all will do it. There's a mix of each kind here on the forums. I suspect that everyone who posts here knows who these folks are.

Anyway, the inability to actually walk your talk on the mat is just a form of wishful thinking and it certainly isn't Budo. In martial arts it isn't what you don't know that gets you killed, it's what you don't know you don't know. If you know you don't know it you can work around it. But wishful thinking is deadly and it bad spirituality as well. So, no, I don't think all strands are worthy of respect, just the ones that are worthy of respect.

George S. Ledyard
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Old 01-22-2011, 06:11 PM   #50
graham christian
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Re: My Rope Theory

Hi George. Good meeting you again. I can't disagree with any of what you say for I understand where you're coming from and the only difference I see is based on one word.

The word is 'respect'. Let me explain why. For years I tussled with the concept as I had it as a principle which I was taught and it came from Tohei's principles and it was 'respect your partner's Ki'

I went from thinking I knew what it meant to seeing I didn't know what it meant to seeing it sometimes depending.......

Finally I saw what it meant and my view on the word itself changed, the power of respect took on a whole new meaning. You want to know what it meant? It meant repect your partnes' Ki.

As usual in these things it was back to the simplicity.

What I wasn't getting was that I thought if something was bad I couldn't respect it. It happened in two stages: First a reality of Ki and the fact that everyone, beyond the presented illusion has Ki and to 'see' it, know it and respect it. As Ki itself is good then it is also to see past the presented force or even negative energy as they are not Ki. So of course I could respect their Ki and link with it even if they didn't know they had it or was sure what they were using was it. On doing and practicing this It expanded out to why not respect what they are doing anyway whether bad or good for respect is an inherent part of my spiritual being so why let others make me give up part of my true self?

Now once again this doesn't to me mean I agree with or even should let it carry on, it's down to personal judgement. For example if someone wants to do Aikido in my space, in my dojo, and yet not according to the principles I teach then after showing them the difference and respecting where they are coming from they realize either this is the way they were looking for or they leave. I respect them either way. If someone is acting obnoxious towards others I can respect it and accept it and yet communicate through to the true them it is not allowed and if they persist they will have to go somewhere else.

In fact using the rope analogy I would say that when a thread is overtly disrupting or even covertly undermining or harming the rope(group) that generally in life the group or person in charge of the group takes appropriate action and this would be known as justice.

So that is what I meant by respect and once again I probably should try to articulate clearer sometimes.

Respect. G.
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