Welcome to AikiWeb Aikido Information
AikiWeb: The Source for Aikido Information
AikiWeb's principal purpose is to serve the Internet community as a repository and dissemination point for aikido information.

Sections
home
aikido articles
columns

Discussions
forums
aikiblogs

Databases
dojo search
seminars
image gallery
supplies
links directory

Reviews
book reviews
video reviews
dvd reviews
equip. reviews

News
submit
archive

Miscellaneous
newsletter
rss feeds
polls
about

Follow us on



Home > AikiWeb Aikido Forums
Go Back   AikiWeb Aikido Forums > General

Hello and thank you for visiting AikiWeb, the world's most active online Aikido community! This site is home to over 22,000 aikido practitioners from around the world and covers a wide range of aikido topics including techniques, philosophy, history, humor, beginner issues, the marketplace, and more.

If you wish to join in the discussions or use the other advanced features available, you will need to register first. Registration is absolutely free and takes only a few minutes to complete so sign up today!

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 06-27-2000, 09:36 PM   #1
Orange
"Orange"
IP Hash: a98945d8
Join Date: Jun 2000
Anonymous User
Offline
I have been practicing Aikido for a little over a year and have just started to wonder about the claims that Aikido is "non-violent".

The majority of the techniques I have seen end in either a projection or a pin, and I can see how those can be considered non-violent. At the same time there are some techniques such as chokes, that don't seem to follow the same mentality of protecting uke.

And then the fact that techniques can be performed in such a way that they can seriously injure uke only makes me ask the question more.

So is aikido non-violent or is aikido something that can be non-violent but isn't necessarily so?

  Reply With Quote
Old 06-27-2000, 11:24 PM   #2
akiy
 
akiy's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 5,852
Offline
I remember my first aikido teacher saying, "The techniques of aikido are all capable of great damage -- even to the point of killing the attacker. It's the person doing the aikido that makes it non-lethal." I liked that.

I'm sure other people have thoughts on this subject, though. Anyone else?

-- Jun


Please help support AikiWeb -- become an AikiWeb Contributing Member!
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-28-2000, 12:39 AM   #3
Chuck Clark
 
Chuck Clark's Avatar
Dojo: Jiyushinkan
Location: Monroe, Washington
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 1,134
United_States
Offline
I think "violence" is in the kokoro or mind/heart/spirit/intent of the person not the technique.

As a tornado is not violent, but powerful and possibly destructive in our eyes, budo waza is not violent unless accompanied by violent intent, hatred, malevolent energy from the person who performs the technique.

I took part in almost three years of combat in Viet Nam and only felt violence in myself on three occassions and I'll never forget that feeling. I really believe that we can be compassionate and still do what is necessary to carry out self-defense even in wartime.

I believe the nature of budo is compassionate even though some times we must use strong measures to achieve peace.

Chuck Clark
Jiyushinkai Aikibudo
www.jiyushinkai.org
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-28-2000, 10:14 AM   #4
Aiki1
 
Aiki1's Avatar
Dojo: ACE Aikido
Location: Los Angeles
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 346
United_States
Offline
Just out of curiosity, what style of Aikido do you take that teaches chokes? Some styles do teach them, some don't. Just wondering.

Larry Novick
Head Instructor
ACE Aikido
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-28-2000, 10:57 AM   #5
Chuck Clark
 
Chuck Clark's Avatar
Dojo: Jiyushinkan
Location: Monroe, Washington
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 1,134
United_States
Offline
Mr. Novick,

We practice shimewaza in the Jiyushinkai. It's one of the infinite possibilities that spring out of some of our kihon no kata. Shimewaza done softly and adeptly can be a very quick way to "protect" uke.

Regards,

Chuck Clark
Jiyushinkai Aikibudo
www.jiyushinkai.org
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-28-2000, 11:03 AM   #6
Orange
"Orange"
IP Hash: 253163b1
Join Date: Jun 2000
Anonymous User
Offline
I don't know what the style is called but my instructor's main influence has been Chiba Sensei.
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-28-2000, 12:13 PM   #7
Nick
Dojo: Aikido of Greater Atlanta
Location: Atlanta, GA
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 561
United_States
Offline
Ai symbol

Suenaka-ha Tetsugaku-ho Aikido does shime-waza.

I believe that Aikido is all in the heart and mind of the Aikidoka. It goes to the discussion of Katsujinken, Satsujinto- Aikido can be used as the Sword to give Life and protect the weak (Katsujinken) as it was meant to, by O-sensei, or it can be used to break someone's back by provoking a fight and than giving them an iriminage on some nice pavement, and using it to hurt the weak (Satsujinto). However, I also believe that Aikido is harder to make work while holding the Satsujinto, than say, karate. The times I have gone to Aikido with stray thoughts on my mind, I become angry and try to use strength, making my technique suffer. This, I believe, is why O-sensei taught Aikido in the way he did. As long as the Aikidoka remembers that Aikido is about The Loving protection of All Things, we shouldn't be too worried...

Sorry for rambling,

-Nick

---
Nick Porter
"Do not fall into the trap of the artisan who boasts twenty years of experience, when in fact he has had only one year of experience-- twenty times."
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-28-2000, 05:40 PM   #8
janet
Dojo: City Aikido
Location: Northern California
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 18
Offline
Violence means...?

It took a year of strikes and grabs to wonder about it, huh? ;-)

As Chuck pointed out, intent is a major factor here. I think the problem is to some degree semantic: What do we mean by "violent"? Aikido IS a martial art; when de-escalation and simple evasion are not enough, it involves direct physical action. I would probably say that in this context, by "violent" we mean "aggressive." That aikido is primarily used for defense, though at times proactively, not as a tool to bully or oppress.
Does that help?

janet
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-28-2000, 09:03 PM   #9
Orange
"Orange"
IP Hash: 9cf9e8ee
Join Date: Jun 2000
Anonymous User
Offline
It is rather interesting that it took me about a year to start wondering about this

I had studied Kempo for a while and was trying to figure out why I lost interest in that but have managed to be much more dedicated to Aikido. At first I thought it was that Aikido is not a pummel-you-oppenent-until-he-can-no-longer-fight style of martial art, while the Kempo had "Death Techniques". But after doing a few choke techniques, it struck me that Aikido can be just as deadly, it does have a different mentality applied to it though. As a few posts here have pointed out, Aikido favors the life giving sword.
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-28-2000, 11:53 PM   #10
Chuck Clark
 
Chuck Clark's Avatar
Dojo: Jiyushinkan
Location: Monroe, Washington
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 1,134
United_States
Offline
Be assured that ALL aiki techniques have many "sharp edges" within the principles of the technique.

One of the things I love about aikido is that a well-trained budoka has a choice about the level of lethal force. Of course, many aggressors in self-defence situations injure themselves.

My advice is that if you're in danger, protect yourself to the best of your ability and worry about the rest later. Of course, the more skilled you become, the more responsibility you have for "restraint" and control. My goal is to always "do as little harm as possible."

Chuck Clark
Jiyushinkai Aikibudo
www.jiyushinkai.org
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-30-2000, 03:04 PM   #11
Guest5678
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 135
Offline
Re: Violence means...?

Quote:
janet wrote:
It took a year of strikes and grabs to wonder about it, huh? ;-)

As Chuck pointed out, intent is a major factor here. I think the problem is to some degree semantic: What do we mean by "violent"? Aikido IS a martial art; when de-escalation and simple evasion are not enough, it involves direct physical action. I would probably say that in this context, by "violent" we mean "aggressive." That aikido is primarily used for defense, though at times proactively, not as a tool to bully or oppress.
Does that help?
========================================================
Janet,

I agree with most of your post however, I would ask you, is Aikido a martial art? or is Aikido a martial way? Personally, I believe it started out as an art that was martial in nature, but as with most living things, through time and a lifelong refinement by it's discoverer (O'sensei), it evolved into what it is today. I also believe this process of evolution has led to the different "styles" we see today. People took home that which it was at that time.

Violence has it's place in Aikido as well as in all martial arts and ways, for If there were no violence, there would be little need to practice. Although violence is not intended, to someone watching you do ikkyo to someone that doesn't know how to take ukemi will appear very violent indeed. I believe it's really a matter of perception.

Just my two pennies in the pot.

Dan

  Reply With Quote
Old 06-30-2000, 07:41 PM   #12
Nick
Dojo: Aikido of Greater Atlanta
Location: Atlanta, GA
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 561
United_States
Offline
Aikido, as O-sensei taught it, is about protection of all things, yourself and the attacker. That does not mean there can be no pain involved, for as O-sensei said- "Even pain is a manifestation of love." For instance- there is a video of O-sensei performing shihonage on a police officer on the roof of a building. However, the cop almost spins out of it! My instructor (Roy Suenaka) suggests in his Book Aikido Kyohan (plug plug) that O-sensei could have wiped him out, but they were on a roof, with no mat, doing a technique on a civilian with little to no falling experience. As Suenaka sensei says: "It's not bad technique, it's the loving protection of all things..."

Something to think about,

-Nick



---
Nick Porter
"Do not fall into the trap of the artisan who boasts twenty years of experience, when in fact he has had only one year of experience-- twenty times."
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-01-2000, 11:49 AM   #13
Tiggr
Dojo: NorthWest Defensive Arts
Location: Tacoma, WA
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 3
Offline
Do symbol Aiki as

Being somewhat "new" to the Aiki arts, I probably have a (slightly) different perspective....

First, I found an Aikijutsu dojo after over twenty years of various other martial arts (Goju Ryu Karate, Lima Lama Kung Fu, Tae Kwon Do, Q'uin Tao Kung Fu, Military Sabre, teaching unarmed/knife/bayonet/rifle Close Quarters Combat in special operations units) as well as martial "ways" (Judo, etc.)

Second, the reason I have been exceedingly happy with Icho Ryu Aikijutsu is that it keeps firmly in touch with its martial roots while extending my skills so that I don't HAVE to hurt others unnecessarily.

My point? The techniques of Aiki contain devastating (and potentially lethal) elements. The "way" (philosophy) of Aiki disciplines us to avoid unnecessary conflict and to use an appropriate level of violence only to protect others and ourselves.

I am glad that the Aiki arts has room for all of us.

Tiggr
In the game of life, I have no interest in tickets on the 50-yard line.
I brought my shoes....I came to play!
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-01-2000, 01:05 PM   #14
Nick
Dojo: Aikido of Greater Atlanta
Location: Atlanta, GA
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 561
United_States
Offline
Aikido gives us a choice to control our opponent. As O-sensei said, quoting a samurai motto:

"Cause pain before you injure. Injure before you maim. Maim before you kill. And if you must kill, make it a clean kill. Squeeze every drop of life from the opponent."

Something new to think about,

-Nick

---
Nick Porter
"Do not fall into the trap of the artisan who boasts twenty years of experience, when in fact he has had only one year of experience-- twenty times."
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-02-2000, 10:46 PM   #15
AikiTom
Dojo: Aikido Martial Arts Center
Location: Blue Grass, IA
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 84
Offline
O-sensie really said that "clean kill" stuff? I would doubt it.
Anyway, my two cents, (which summarizes much of the above) is this:
Aikido is not non-violent, as much as it non-agressive.
Aikido is separated from many martial arts because it (ethically and practically) allows for a proportionate response, that is one in direct proportion to the intensity of the attack.
I think that using chokes (carefully) in practice has two values: 1) you need to experience it before it actually happens so you can know the feeling you'll have while using aikido to get out of it, and 2) knowing how to do a choke may be the ethically kindest thing, particularly if multiple attackers are present, and a quick, non-lethal response is called for.
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-02-2000, 11:15 PM   #16
Mike Collins
Location: San Jose
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 189
United_States
Offline
I once had a real life situation in which an intoxicated person invaded my home. In order to put a stop to the situation, pain had no effect, structure (taking his balance ond thereby rendering his structure useless to him) had only the effect of moving this person around. The only way to end the altercation without injuring him (more than I already had, trying to get a reaction with pain), I had to put him to sleep with a choke, and wait for the police. It was non violent because my intent was his protection, as well as the protection of my family.
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-02-2000, 11:34 PM   #17
AikiTom
Dojo: Aikido Martial Arts Center
Location: Blue Grass, IA
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 84
Offline
Bravo!
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2000, 09:30 AM   #18
Nick
Dojo: Aikido of Greater Atlanta
Location: Atlanta, GA
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 561
United_States
Offline
that was a good thing to do. The only other way he could have been subdued with a baseball bat or bokken (take your pick), and when he did go down, he might not have gotten back.

Another example that while Aikido is an effective martial art, it does not have to be violent.

Kanpai,

-Nick

---
Nick Porter
"Do not fall into the trap of the artisan who boasts twenty years of experience, when in fact he has had only one year of experience-- twenty times."
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-22-2011, 12:41 PM   #19
TOMAC
Dojo: Nashville Aikikai
Location: Nashville/TN
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 11
United_States
Offline
Re: Is Aikido Non-Violent?

This is a very interesting thread. My first thought is that it is helpful to look at "Aikido" and "Aikido Technique" as separate concepts. Aikido is the way to achieve harmony of spirit. We are all familiar with this basic translation of the name of our art. Technique is a part of the art but does not encompass the art in it's entirety. Since the techniques that we employ in our training are ancient and not unique to Aikido, they are potentially lethal and by construction "violent."

Harmony, by definition, is not all peace and love. In order for there to be harmony there must be discord. Harmony in (western) music operates on the singular principle of the resolution of a dissonant interval to a consonant (or less dissonant) interval.

Our art teaches us to resolve conflict. In the unfortunate circumstance of a violent physical attack our hope is that the principles that we have learned and internalized in the dojo will serve to help us protect ourselves and nullify the attack. If our attacker is injured in the process it is unfortunate. In any event we would not seek to harm or punish our attacker. By this standard my opinion is that Aikido is non-violent.
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-22-2011, 02:20 PM   #20
SeiserL
 
SeiserL's Avatar
Dojo: Roswell Budokan, Kyushinkan Dojo, Aikido World Alliance
Location: Roswell, GA USA
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 3,719
United_States
Offline
Re: Is Aikido Non-Violent?

Quote:
Jun Akiyama wrote: View Post
I remember my first aikido teacher saying, "The techniques of aikido are all capable of great damage -- even to the point of killing the attacker. It's the person doing the aikido that makes it non-lethal." I liked that.
DITTO

Styles are not violent or non-violent.

People's intent and applications can be.

Lynn Seiser PhD
Yondan Aikido & FMA/JKD
We do not rise to the level of our expectations, but fall to the level of our training. Train well. KWATZ!
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-22-2011, 04:22 PM   #21
Shadowfax
 
Shadowfax's Avatar
Dojo: Allegheny Aikido, Pitsburgh PA
Location: Pittsburgh PA
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 884
United_States
Offline
Re: Is Aikido Non-Violent?

Expect the old thread police to be along shortly. But this is a good subject and a thread I had not come across before.

Aikido is neither violent nor is non-violent. Aikido just is. It is the person using it, and their intent, that is violent or non violent. Or at least that's how I perceive it.
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-22-2011, 04:29 PM   #22
phitruong
Dojo: Charlotte Aikikai Agatsu Dojo
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 1,811
United_States
Offline
Re: Is Aikido Non-Violent?

you pay folks to regularly slam you into the ground. i'd say that's pretty violent. actually, it's pretty disturbing behavior, borderline masochism and/or sadism. either way, we are a bunch of sick buggers.

"budo is putting on cold, wet, sweat stained gi with a smile and a snarl" - your truly
http://charlotteaikikai.org
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-22-2011, 05:14 PM   #23
matty_mojo911
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 38
Offline
Re: Is Aikido Non-Violent?

Aikido involves extreme trust - think about it, it is one of the few martial arts where perhaps 100's of times a class you "offer" a limb - I.e. you grab their wrist, sleeve, collar, stick your arm out etc...etc..then your partner throws or pins you.

I've always found it a slightly odd concept that we give a person a gift, our hand/arm, and they slam us for it. Never really considered that a really harmonius concept - yes, yes I know it all depends on the flow between the two persons, looking after our partner that sort of thing.

I would say that those persons who are rough with our gift are violent - and there are plenty of them out there.

Ps - choking someone out/rendering someone unconcious in my country is considered a "Grevious Bodily Harm" charge. I do BJJ and have choked out plenty of people and been choked out many times but you have to remember it is a technique that can very easily kill if carried a bit far - unlike a wrist lock, arm bar etc..self defense is always proportianate to the immediate threat against you - so it depends on the circumstances as to whether it is acceptable to do.
  Reply With Quote
Old 11-22-2011, 05:40 PM   #24
Kevin Leavitt
 
Kevin Leavitt's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido of Northern Virginia
Location: Stuttgart, Baden Wurttemberg
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 4,376
Germany
Offline
Re: Is Aikido Non-Violent?

Quote:
Cherie Cornmesser wrote: View Post
Expect the old thread police to be along shortly. But this is a good subject and a thread I had not come across before.I

Aikido is neither violent nor is non-violent. Aikido just is. It is the person using it, and their intent, that is violent or non violent. Or at least that's how I perceive it.
I agree with this too!

  Reply With Quote
Old 11-22-2011, 06:04 PM   #25
lbb
Location: Massachusetts
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 2,816
United_States
Offline
Re: Is Aikido Non-Violent?

I don't think that aikido is non-violent for the same reason that I don't think it's a spiritual practice. There is more to being non-violent (or spiritual) than just saying you are, or reciting a few platitudes. It takes practice and action and skill and thought, and as far as I can see, neither one of those is systematically taught to aikido sensei...so why would you expect to learn such things in an aikido dojo? My sensei are great people, who have probably reflected more deeply on the subject of violence than the average person...but if I really wanted to study non-violence, I would go instead to one of our newer members who has made a life's practice of non-violence and mediation. Aikido and non-violence, or aikido and spiritual practice, aren't mutually exclusive...but they're not mutually INclusive either.
  Reply With Quote

Please visit our sponsor:

Aikido of Northern VA Seminars - Doran-sensei in Northern Virginia, March 2015



Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Instructor got mad because I didnt fall actoman Training 192 05-02-2012 03:55 AM
Mixing Aikido with other martial arts Guilty Spark General 146 05-04-2008 11:10 AM
Aikido minus mysticism: a step forward Red Beetle General 358 10-10-2006 12:43 PM
Dilution of aikido eugene_lo General 40 02-07-2006 12:22 PM
Aikido is still violent......? Jordan Steele General 39 06-15-2004 11:10 PM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 06:15 AM.



vBulletin Copyright © 2000-2014 Jelsoft Enterprises Limited
----------
Copyright 1997-2014 AikiWeb and its Authors, All Rights Reserved.
----------
For questions and comments about this website:
Send E-mail
plainlaid-picaresque outchasing-protistan explicantia-altarage seaford-stellionate