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Old 09-18-2000, 06:00 AM   #1
andrew
Dojo: NUI, Galway Aikido Club.
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Does anyone think that we could judge objectively whether somebody is as good at Aikido as O Sensei was? Would they be recognised for it, or would aiki-politics prevent it?
just wondering what everybody thinks...
andrew
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Old 09-18-2000, 11:14 PM   #2
Nacho
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I voted for No in the poll. And I am surprised at the number of people that voted for Yes. I think if you ask every Shihan or direct students of O Sensei about that (except Tohei), they would answer No.
And, also, you have to count that when someone has an idea, invents, finds or designs something, It's much harder for him than to the rest who only have to understand it. And do you think Aikido is an easy thing to undertand?
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Old 09-19-2000, 09:06 AM   #3
pantera
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Circle

I was one of those surprisingly many people that voted yes. The reason that I thought that someone might eventually be better at Aikido than the founder was, is really just a matter of general life principle for me. I am 'n Physics student at University and we are taught the old theories of the old physicists. Then we are taught the less older theories and so on until after almost a lifetime you learn the new theories and the when you are really into your physics you write the new theories.

The reason I say all this is that I think Aikido can be compared to this. Every new student will learn everything that OSensei taught. Even so for a yodansha. But when you get very high up (like shihan level, and you are really very into you Aikido) you might get new insights into Aikido that OSensei might not have had and so the art can advance as a whole from the new insights the top practicioners have.

I realise though that none of this new insights will be possible without OSensei's training to "stand on"

peace

"And in the Darkness of your eyes a
star is born..."
unknown (to me)

Pieter Breed
Stellenbosch University
South Africa
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Old 09-19-2000, 09:44 AM   #4
rch
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Ai symbol

From a technical stand point, I think his skill level has already been surpassed. From a spiritual side, that may never happen. One thing I always try to keep in mind is the fact that O Sensei was a man. A great man indeed, but still just a man. Like all other men, there's always going to be someone better than us at some point in time.



-Rob
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Old 09-19-2000, 12:08 PM   #5
Erik
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I think it depends on your criteria. On a technical level to my way of thinking it's inevitable. Just look at sports today and you will see athletes who are not only faster, bigger and stronger than their earlier counterparts but because of advancements in technology and training techniques (weightlifting, diet, etc.) their ability is unquestionably better than those who came before them. I watch films of basketball in the 70's and it looks slow, the people seem small and it's almost a different game. In football, how many professional teams in the 70's had 300 pound lineman? How many teams today don't have them? Since the Olympics are going on as I write this, check out how many records are set or broken there and tell me people don't get better?

In regards to physical and technical skill, it's a no-brainer.

As to his spiritual development, that is a different matter. The O'Sensei's of today, whomever they turn out to be, won't look anything like O'Sensei. O'Sensei grew up in a time of war and I'm willing to bet that he never saw a computer. Today's O'Sensei's will be something completely new and won't be recognized as such because of this. They will be just as good or better though.
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Old 09-19-2000, 03:54 PM   #6
mjhacker
 
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Anyone who believes that Ueshiba sensei's level of physical skill will never be surpassed must, in my mind, have the following qualifications:

a) direct, personal experience with Ueshiba sensei's technique,
b) direct, personal experience with the technique of everyone else in the world walking the path, and
c) the psychic ability to see into the future

If you really believe that no one will ever equal or better Ueshiba sensei technically, then simple logic dictates that the technical level of Aikido will necessarily decline over the years until, eventually, nothing of much worth is left.

Why is Aikido so special? Why is it, and it alone, exempt from the same improvement that every other endeavour in human history has experienced? Why, in my experience, do students of other arts not play this pointless game of deifying teachers and setting up artificial, false limitations for themselves, their teachers, and everyone else? (Note: these limitations don't apply to me.)

I, for one, agree that Ueshiba sensei's technical skill level has *likely* already been surpassed by many people... some of whom may have even been his contemporaries. As far as saying that no one will surpass his spiritual level... what does that even mean? How is one person "more spiritual" than another?

If only Ueshiba sensei did "real" Aikido, then go ahead and call what I do "chocolate pudding" if you like... a name is just a name.

Besides... everyone knows that Bruce Lee could kick anybody's ass.
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Old 09-19-2000, 05:18 PM   #7
pantera
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Talking bruce lee vs. O Sensei

I liked that comment about Bruce Lee btw - what would a matchup between somebody doing Kung-Fu and Aikijutsu look like?

As for what you actuallly said in your post: I like totally agree man. Like totally.

peace man

"And in the Darkness of your eyes a
star is born..."
unknown (to me)

Pieter Breed
Stellenbosch University
South Africa
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Old 09-20-2000, 06:51 AM   #8
andrew
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Quote:
saruo wrote:

Besides... everyone knows that Bruce Lee could kick anybody's ass.
If he wasn't dead from pushing his body too hard? C'mon, the guy killed himself!
andrew
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Old 09-20-2000, 07:20 AM   #9
Konni
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I believe if it came to a confrontation between O-Sensei and Bruce Lee (which itself is very foolish to think about) they wouldn't even fight but would solve their conflict with words in a very polite manner. I think they were both very great personalities and both were on the same way (maybe just with different vehicles). I mean by this that they were both on the path of aiki.

Just my view of this.
Bye. Konstantin.
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Old 09-20-2000, 09:34 AM   #10
mjhacker
 
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Yeah, I love Bruce Lee's version of Aiki...

BOOT TO THE HEAD!! WOKKKAAAAAA!!!!!
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Old 09-20-2000, 09:37 AM   #11
mjhacker
 
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Quote:
andrew wrote:
If he wasn't dead from pushing his body too hard? C'mon, the guy killed himself!
andrew
Like I said... he could kick ANYBODY's ass. His own included.
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Old 09-20-2000, 10:08 AM   #12
andrew
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Quote:
saruo wrote:
Quote:
andrew wrote:
If he wasn't dead from pushing his body too hard? C'mon, the guy killed himself!
andrew
Like I said... he could kick ANYBODY's ass. His own included.
I tend to disagree.
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Old 09-20-2000, 10:12 AM   #13
Brian Vickery
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Quote:

--------------------------------------------------------------------
Andrew wrote:
"Does anyone think that we could judge objectively whether somebody is as good at Aikido as O Sensei was?"
--------------------------------------------------------------------

Wouldn't you consider this statement analogous to saying:

-Will there ever be as good a Christian as Jesus is?

I've read many uchi deshi state that: 'O-Sensei was Aikido'. So how can anyone surpass O-Sensei when it comes to aikido? In all contexts of aikido, be it spiritual or technical, I don't think this question can be truly answered. Any aikidoka that approaches this type of ability will most likely break away from aikido and form their own art, like O-Sensei did from aikijujutsu. I feel that Tomiki & Shioda came pretty darn close to this level, as did Tohei, and all still maintain a link to aikido and O-Sensei.

Just my slant on this topic!

Brian Vickery

Brian Vickery

"The highest level of technique to achieve is that of having NO technique!"
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Old 09-20-2000, 10:45 AM   #14
mjhacker
 
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andrew wrote:
Quote:
andrew wrote:
I tend to disagree.
And look at what you're disagreeing with... <ugh>
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Old 09-20-2000, 01:33 PM   #15
chillzATL
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I think that around the time of O'sensei's death there were many that thought Tohei sensei's technique was every bit the equal of O'sensei. But at the same time O'sensei had something beyond technique that nobody will ever match.
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Old 09-20-2000, 02:23 PM   #16
andrew
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Quote:
Brian Vickery wrote:
Quote:

-

-Will there ever be as good a Christian as Jesus is?



Brian Vickery
I think your analogy is pretty flawed. Liked your point though.
andrew
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Old 09-20-2000, 02:47 PM   #17
akiy
 
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Quote:
Brian Vickery wrote:
Wouldn't you consider this statement analogous to saying:

-Will there ever be as good a Christian as Jesus is?
Not really. Will there ever be a car as good as the first Model T? Will there be an airplane as good as the Wright Brothers'? Will there be a physicist as good as Galileo?

The founder was good at aikido because he, in effect, defined what "good aikido" was about because it was his "creation." Whatever he did became an example for "good aikido." But why does that limit others from achieving the same or even greater?

"If I have seen farther than others, it is because I was standing on the shoulders of giants." -- Sir Isaac Newton

-- Jun

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Old 09-20-2000, 03:36 PM   #18
mjhacker
 
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Quote:
Brian Vickery wrote:
Will there ever be as good a Christian as Jesus is?
Jesus wasn't a Christian... he was a Jew. Those who followed him and his teachings eventually came to be known as Christians.
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Old 09-20-2000, 04:42 PM   #19
Brian Vickery
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Quote:
_______________________________________________________
Jun wrote:
The founder was good at aikido because he, in effect, defined what
"good aikido" was about because it was his "creation." Whatever he
did became an example for "good aikido." But why does that limit
others from achieving the same or even greater?
_______________________________________________________

Others are NOT limited in achieving what O-Sensei accomplished,
but if they did, would that still be considered 'aikido'? Or would that
be the "creation" of new art form?

Brian Vickery
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Old 09-20-2000, 05:01 PM   #20
Brian Vickery
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Unhappy

Quote:
saruo wrote:
Quote:
Brian Vickery wrote:
Will there ever be as good a Christian as Jesus is?
Jesus wasn't a Christian... he was a Jew. Those who followed him and his teachings eventually came to be known as Christians.
sarou,

You are absolutely right here, that was a bad analogy on my part. And to avert an in-depth theological discussion or the drawing of parallels between Judism & Christianity as compared to Aikijujutsu & Aikido, everybody please just forget I even posted it.

Brian Vickery

[Edited by Brian Vickery on September 20, 2000 at 04:03pm]
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Old 09-20-2000, 06:23 PM   #21
Nick
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why forget? it was a good analogy. Don't beat yourself up- it's how candid so many people are on this forum that makes it so interesting.

-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."
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Old 09-21-2000, 12:22 AM   #22
stratcat
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Do symbol O'Sensei's technique

I feel that Mr. Vickery's comment is very true, in the sense that (I paraphrase) anyone that reaches O'Sensei's level of mastery will, in all likelygood, break off and create their own thing.

Anyway, I believe O'Sensei's technical level has already been surpassed; probably by more people than we realize. Looking at it in another way: when you're standing on the shoulders of giants, it's a lot easier to reach higher.

So really, the question of surpassing O'Sensei's level is moot. We are all standing on O'Sensei's shoulders, on what he built. The real question is: Will any of us be able to attain the level of INSIGHT that allowed him to CREATE Aikido?

One other thing: there is nothing wrong in venerating your teacher; It's another thing entirely to impose your teacher's abilities as a limit. Nothing must limit your commitment to become the best Aikidoka you can. My own teacher always says to us: "I train you to become better than I; any teacher worth his salt wants his students to surpass him. If you do not try to be better Aikidoka than me, I will not have done my job."

I'm sure this is what O'Sensei intended for his students. That is, for ALL his students, no matter the style of Aikido we may practice.

[Edited by stratcat on September 20, 2000 at 11:24pm]

Andy Hertz.
"Standing before me
enemies my mind does not ignore
I take a step forward
and act!"
Morihei Ueshiba
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Old 09-21-2000, 01:31 AM   #23
Mike Collins
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Osensei will be surpassed, cause that is the nature of such things. If I didn't believe that was true, it would dull my enjoyment and wonder of this art.

Bruce Lee was a cool guy too. He's dead, be polite.

Now Steven Seagal, he can kick everybody's ass, just ask him.
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Old 09-21-2000, 01:36 AM   #24
Mike Collins
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I read somewhere, or maybe I thunk it up all by myself: a student owes it to his teacher to surpass the teacher, thereby perfecting the teacher.
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Old 09-21-2000, 03:21 AM   #25
Erik
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Quote:
Mikey wrote:
I read somewhere, or maybe I thunk it up all by myself: a student owes it to his teacher to surpass the teacher, thereby perfecting the teacher.
Isn't the point of being a teacher to pass on what you know so that students don't have to make all the same mistakes you did?

I suppose another way of looking at this is that it allows them to make a whole bunch of new ones.
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