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Old 04-18-2002, 10:01 AM   #1
akiy
 
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"Aiki"

So, what's your definition of "aiki"?

-- Jun

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Old 04-18-2002, 10:30 AM   #2
Chuck.Gordon
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Re: "Aiki"

Quote:
Originally posted by akiy
So, what's your definition of "aiki"?
-- Jun
Good question and a tough one, too.

From my poor understanding, aiki as a term has been around a long time, some references to it in some old religious documents and old sword scrolls and the like.

Apparently, the original use, in budo anyhow, was more 'to dominate the enemy's spirit' than anything else ... I can't say what the old Shinto meaning was, no clue.

Ueshiba seems to have redefined the term in later years to fit his deepening religious beliefs, to more of a sense of harmony than of domination ... but that leaves some question as well as to the definition of harmony to a crusty old Japanese brawler turned religious mystic.

When a nail sticks up and all that ...

I think some (not all, mind you) folks in aikido (especially in the West) want it to mean something like warm fuzzy happy hugs for everyone, but from what I've been able to piece together, even Ueshiba, in later years, didn't quite see it that way.

To others, it's all about getting in tune with the universe, but again, we have to discern what Ueshiba MEANT by harmony with the universe.

It's a very interesting idea that offers many facets, and in typical Japanese fashion, it can really mean various things to various folks in various contexts ...

Chuck
(who leans toward the spiritual domination theory himself)

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Old 04-18-2002, 11:46 AM   #3
Lyle Bogin
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Take what you get and give it back.

A definition in progress ofcourse.
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Old 04-18-2002, 03:46 PM   #4
Mona
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Re: "Aiki"

Quote:
Originally posted by akiy
So, what's your definition of "aiki"?

-- Jun
To me, the Aiki principle is perfectly illustrated in O'Sensei's own words:

"When an opponent comes forward, move in and greet him; if he wants to pull back, send him on his way."

and

"Let attackers come any way they like and then blend with them. Redirect each attack and get firmly behind it."

Not to mention "Masakatsu Agatsu".

But most importantly, 'Aiki' means not criticizing other styles in Aikido or other Martial Arts.
As long as you don't consider yourself and your Art a cut above the rest, you're in a state of Aiki.


blessings,

~ Mona
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Old 04-18-2002, 03:52 PM   #5
Chocolateuke
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Evil Eyes

I have read it somewere that it is the blending of male and female forces the ying and yang ype deal, the definition i got was the blending the positive and negitive forces. negitive dosent mean bead just teh opposite of possitive, but Ill have to look into the subject more to make my own definition. hey how do you get the cool smilie like that in the post??

Dallas Adolphsen
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Old 04-18-2002, 04:33 PM   #6
Don_Modesto
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"Aiki"

aiki=kokyu?

Quote:
Originally posted by Mona
But most importantly, 'Aiki' means not criticizing other styles in Aikido or other Martial Arts.
As long as you don't consider yourself and your Art a cut above the rest, you're in a state of Aiki.
Not sure history agrees with you. Osensei fancied aikido advanced martial art--does that constitute "a cut above"?

He was also barefacedly condescending with regard to Kano's judo, despite Kano's regard for and courtesy toward Ueshiba.

Don J. Modesto
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Old 04-18-2002, 04:43 PM   #7
Mona
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Re: "Aiki"

Quote:
Originally posted by Don_Modesto
aiki=kokyu?



Not sure history agrees with you. Osensei fancied aikido advanced martial art--does that constitute "a cut above"?

He was also barefacedly condescending with regard to Kano's judo, despite Kano's regard for and courtesy toward Ueshiba.
I believe that Jun's question was:
"What is YOUR definition of Aiki?"
And the portion of the post you're commenting on has nothing to do with the O'Sensei quotes I mentioned. It's my own additional definition of Aiki with regard to present-day Martial Arts.

blessings,

~ Mona
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Old 04-18-2002, 05:04 PM   #8
Don_Modesto
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Re: Re: "Aiki"

Quote:
Originally posted by Mona
I believe that Jun's question was:
"What is YOUR definition of Aiki?"
Quite right.

aiki = strawberry shortcake

Don J. Modesto
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Old 04-18-2002, 05:11 PM   #9
Bruce Baker
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Aiki

Consider ...

The universe is energy.

The energy seeks to become matter/mass.

The Mass combines with other elements seeking to become energy, again.

Somewhere in the attempt for mass to have the life force become energy, it attempts to gain the lifeforce which becomes energy.

So, the lifeforce of all things is Aiki.

Even as the mass attempts to recombine into forms that will give energy, this too becomes Aiki. (Although its slow scope of life takes billions of years and is beyond our comprehension with its slowly moving masses.)

So you see, even our lives, which amounts to a millionth of a second in the universal scheme of life becomes Aiki, we are but generators of energy .... Aiki power.

The warmth of your body, the static electricity you get with clothing, and the well of energy in your second and third wind ... these too are Aiki.

Somewhere in your gut feeling and your willpower is the solution to finding .... Aiki.

All these things are alive with energy.

All these things have Aiki.

If you consider even things that die recombine and again create energy or life, even death can not stop this struggle to reach energy/life. Aiki is pretty awesome!
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Old 04-18-2002, 08:33 PM   #10
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I think you are absolutely right, Bruce, I believe Einstein expressed the beauty of the universe a lot more easily though: E=mc2 (you know it's squared but i've got no superscripts here)
and I don't remember the ones for time dilation, length compression and mass increase but to me they too express aiki very well sometimes....
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Old 04-19-2002, 01:03 PM   #11
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I think that when two or more forces or energies come together they create a third force, an "aiki". It has physical properties and manifests just like any other physical thing, but take away one of its pieces and POOF! ...where did it go? This may be how atoms are formed, how galaxies come together.
A couple of German philosophers called this "gestalt" back in the 1920s, and described it as "The whole is different than the sum of its parts". We think motion pictures are alive, but they are just moving faster than we can recognize them as being still.
It is the wave itself, not the ocean water that makes it.

Jim Vance
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Old 05-07-2002, 01:10 PM   #12
Jorx
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Harmony.
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Old 05-07-2002, 01:47 PM   #13
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aiki

Harmony is a state of being. It is my understanding that one of the definitions of Aiki is the "active principle of harmony" which would imply the striving for harmony rather than the state of harmony.
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Old 05-08-2002, 01:18 AM   #14
Jorx
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Striving for harmony = harmony
And as the universe is quite harmonical in the state as such blaah blaah...

just didn't feel like making big and a lot of words...

Jorgen
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Old 05-08-2002, 09:59 AM   #15
Steve
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Re: Aiki

Quote:
Originally posted by Bruce Baker
Consider ...

The universe is energy.

The energy seeks to become matter/mass.

The Mass combines with other elements seeking to become energy, again.

Somewhere in the attempt for mass to have the life force become energy, it attempts to gain the lifeforce which becomes energy.

So, the lifeforce of all things is Aiki.

Even as the mass attempts to recombine into forms that will give energy, this too becomes Aiki. (Although its slow scope of life takes billions of years and is beyond our comprehension with its slowly moving masses.)

So you see, even our lives, which amounts to a millionth of a second in the universal scheme of life becomes Aiki, we are but generators of energy .... Aiki power.

The warmth of your body, the static electricity you get with clothing, and the well of energy in your second and third wind ... these too are Aiki.

Somewhere in your gut feeling and your willpower is the solution to finding .... Aiki.

All these things are alive with energy.

All these things have Aiki.

If you consider even things that die recombine and again create energy or life, even death can not stop this struggle to reach energy/life. Aiki is pretty awesome!
Energy seeks to become matter, matter seeks to become energy? It's all aiki? You are trying sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo hard to be a mystic philosopher but it's just not happening.

Steve Hoffman
+++++++++++
That's going to leave a mark.
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Old 05-08-2002, 01:22 PM   #16
AskanisoN
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A simple explanation as it was given to me...

The kanji for "ai" represents a pot with a lid on it. Hence, "ai" symbolizes to two things fitting togeter. Not to be confused with "wa" which refers to harmony.

The kanji for "ki" represents a boiling pot filled with rice. Hence, "ki" symbolizes energy.

So, I would have to say it means to fit, join or combine energy.

Its no "circle of life" explanation, but it makes sense to me.

Scott
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Old 05-08-2002, 02:03 PM   #17
Liz Baron
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Aiki...

Aiki is the feeling I get when I take an off-camber corner on my Windcheetah, and the inside wheel lifts off the ground, and I'm leaning in to try and keep it down, and steering with my eyeballs, and there's traffic, and pedestrians and...and...

Well that's the Aiki of cycling, anyway.

The only other definition I have is that, given the current world stage, Aiki is what's missing. I may not be able to define it, but I can tell when it's not there.

Liz

L


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"Handbuilt by Daleks..."
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Old 05-08-2002, 03:26 PM   #18
Erik
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"The ability to blend and harmonize with someone in order to get them to do what you want."

Or something like that. And if you don't like it then take it up with Ellis Amdur and that O'Sensei character. You'll probably have to hire John Edward for that latter bit though.
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Old 05-12-2002, 01:58 AM   #19
tedehara
 
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Exclamation "Aiki"

Quote:
Originally posted by akiy
So, what's your definition of "aiki"?
-- Jun
ai means union or harmony and ki can be translated as will or intent. Therefore aiki means to unite or harmonize with another's will or intention.

This can be interpeted on different levels. When you lead your partner, you are uniting or harmonizing with their will or intention to attack you. It is this leading that allows you to perform the technique.

On a spiritual or philosophical level, aiki means to unite or harmonize with the will or intention of the Universe. This is commonly referred to as "...becoming one with the Universe."

Last edited by tedehara : 05-12-2002 at 02:05 AM.

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Old 05-12-2002, 05:01 PM   #20
Bruce Baker
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Aiki and universe of disharmony

By no means, is what I believe Aiki to be ... mystical. It is from scientific fact I have postulated these statements ... by observation of the universe itself.

Kaos, is the prime discourse of the universe. It is the results of energy and matter changing from one form to another. If you are proponent of Kaos, then by all means follow it to its violent end, and re-creation to other forms.

But if you are a practical person, who understands the kaos of everyday life, the destruction of forms to be recreated in other forms, the recombining of different elements to become energy ... you are thus able to see the harmony of this kaos in what we call life.

I believe the question was ... what do you believe Aiki to be?

If you haven't thought about what you personally believe it to be, maybe you should.

Each of us comes from different backrounds, differenct lives, so we see things from our own perspective. The differences of these perspectives is what makes life so interesting, and fascinating? At least I think it is.

So without quoting O'Sensei, or reaching into a book for an easy answer, what is it you personally believe Aiki to be?

Most times, I think the Native Americans have it right. The Mother Earth, the Great Spirit, the Creator of all things ... simple ideas that do translate into the many things that O'Sensei Talks about in his writings and teachings, quite easily.

Many of the modern religions translate into blind obediance to particular groups, or deitys, while pointing to the One God?

The only real God, or deity of us all, is the Universe, the power of that universe, and the life we allowed to have while we are in these bodies. Once these bodies are gone, these spirits no longer generate the same energy as the elements are recombined to form other life. Interpret it as you will, the Aiki, or the life we allowed to posess in our lives, is drawn from the earth, and universe.

If that is not the Aiki of the universe, I don't know what is.

How we use it? That is totally different subject.

If you apply it as a social term of interaction, well ... Then moral conscious, willpower, and social standards come into play with that angle.

Anyway ...

What do you think Aiki is?
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Old 10-28-2002, 05:05 PM   #21
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Going back to this old thread...

Anyone else want to give us your definition of "aiki"?

Also, for the historically/linguistically minded, what sort of definitions have you encountered in your research regarding the term "aiki"?

-- Jun

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Old 10-28-2002, 05:30 PM   #22
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I've heard for a long time that Tomiki-sensei called it "fitting".

A meeting of energy and fitting together harmoniously (meaning, I think, not clashing, good timing, etc.)

Another aspect is "instant victory", taking someone's balance, initiative, etc. at the time of "fitting" that happens at first touch.

First touch may be at some distance, affecting an attackers intent and leading their mind...

aiki-DO is another thing.

Chuck Clark
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Old 10-28-2002, 11:04 PM   #23
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Quote:
Jun Akiyama (akiy) wrote:
...Also, for the historically/linguistically minded, what sort of definitions have you encountered in your research regarding the term "aiki"?

-- Jun
"Ultimately, there is only one state of ki. My father had the following to say about the ultimate state of ki which he had himself attained:

'Through physical training I reached the ultimate understanding of budo. Once the essence of budo had been thus revealed to me, I realized that a person's body and mind and the ki which unites the two should be brought into perfect harmony, and that these three elements should be further unified with the activity of the universe. It is possible to unify one's mind and body and, subsequently, the universe, through the expert use of ki.'

Aiki is, therefore, the unification of the ki which is the basis of the life-force and is made manifest by subtle breath control with the ki which is the basis of existence and which permeates the entire universe, and aiki is to become one with the universe itself."

Conversation with the late Ueshiba Kisshomaru pg 144 The Mysterious Power of Ki by Kouzo Kaku.

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Old 10-29-2002, 05:30 AM   #24
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Aiki is what I also call the Qigong state.

Perfect harmony with the univerese and all things within it. Matching the vibration of one's personal ki with the ki of the cosmic.

L.C.

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Old 10-29-2002, 05:49 AM   #25
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You scare me sometimes Larry.
Quote:
Larry Camejo (L. Camejo) wrote:
Aiki is what I also call the Qigong state.

Perfect harmony with the univerese and all things within it. Matching the vibration of one's personal ki with the ki of the cosmic.
Interesting though how these terms are pretty universal. Have you bought the Nariyama/Shishida book yet - right at the beginning they answer the question "What is Aiki" from a historical to conceptual point of view. Very very clear. Like a lot of these things there really seems to be a more esoteric version and at the same time something more practical. When a Tomiki stylist refers to Aiki they are probably refering to the more practical sense see Chuck Clark's comment above. That of course does not negate the more esoteric either. It is one of the ideas the certain Daito Ryu officiados tend to forget when they say Ueshiba didn't understand Aiki. It is clear to me that Ueshiba understood something since the suggestion of the inclusion of Aiki in the Daito Ryu Aikijujutsu came from the time at Ayabe. What he prefered to emphasize latter in life or if he changed the meaning to suit his outlook is another question. I find what some people call Aiki very strange - don't know if it was ever related to what Ueshiba M. believed.

Last edited by PeterR : 10-29-2002 at 06:02 AM.

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