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Old 03-24-2005, 08:49 AM   #51
Misogi-no-Gyo
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Re: Kototama Question

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:

Mr. Sigman,

You seem to have left out the key word, "seemingly" that prefaced my comments. My point being that it is up to you to show your intentions, or not before asking the same of someone else. I asked you several direct questions which you chose to ignore. This did not go unnoticed. However, skipping over these questions, you continue to ask, and ask, and ask away for information from the members of the message board who may actually have something to offer you. Asking for information, but not giving it in return could be seen as seemingly selfish, be that misconstrued, or otherwise.

Many apologies for my lack of political correctness, in which so many others here seem to be my senior, but I tend to be very straight forward, saying what there is to be said. In any case, I try to do it without highly charged words, or by being sourced by negative emotions, but I reserve the right to do so at any time in the future. With that in mind I would like to say that so far, I don't believe I have encountered a time where you have admitted that someone has posted any information that you might not already know. I am sure this has not gone unnoticed. What would be the chances that you just happen to know everything there is to know about Aikido, or at least everything that everyone here knows? I mean the truth is, you really have no in depth knowledge of the art, or the actual training methods of the many various groups and organizations that make up the art, let alone those of the Founder, himself. However, you seemingly come off as though you believe you do. While you may, indeed be interested in these things, it comes off more like you are only out to prove that you know more anyone else about how the Founder came about his art, or what methods he used to do so, or even how he accomplished his "tricks" as you so interestingly chose to put it. At times you remind me of a short-winded version of Bruce Baker. Albeit in your case you are someone who probably actually knows something to some depth, rather than completely nothing, as in his case. These are only my observations, for what it is worth. Perhaps it is as obvious to others as it is to me what you will choose to do with my comments.

On the other hand, to be fair, I would like to say that to your credit you have chosen not to remain anonymous and certainly do not seem to be a troll. Many people find your comments to be helpful. That is good and certainly a benefit to the board as a whole. I read all of your posts with interest, and will continue to do so in the hopes that things move forward towards you being able to see things from the perspective of those from whom you seek to learn something, or someday even choose to train with.

I, for one, would invite you to come out to California for the Aiki-Expo and meet with those with whom you have been conversing. Perhaps you are more open with people in person, and it would be a perfect opportunity given the somewhat vast cross-section of individuals with whom you would have the opportunity to meet, observe or choose to interact.

As I said, it is up to you how you choose to be seen. Regardless of what choice you make, you have been seen, nonetheless.


.

Last edited by Misogi-no-Gyo : 03-24-2005 at 08:56 AM.

I no longer participate in or read the discussion forums here on AikiWeb due to the unfair and uneven treatment of people by the owner/administrator.
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Old 03-24-2005, 08:58 AM   #52
Mike Sigman
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Re: Kototama Question

Thanks for the rundown on me as you see me, Shaun. It's apt that you do so in the "Spiritual" section.

Regards,

Mike Sigman
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Old 03-24-2005, 12:15 PM   #53
rob_liberti
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Re: Kototama Question

Mr. Liberty is fine with me, as I'm always working on freedom of movement. (I think that's spiritual enough for this thread.)

Rob
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Old 03-24-2005, 12:21 PM   #54
Mike Sigman
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Re: Kototama Question

Quote:
Rob Liberti wrote:
Mr. Liberty is fine with me, as I'm always working on freedom of movement. (I think that's spiritual enough for this thread.)
As soon as I saw it (and yes, I took it as a simple typo, nothing more), I thought "Captain America & Mr. Liberty!".
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Old 03-24-2005, 01:30 PM   #55
Misogi-no-Gyo
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Re: Kototama Question

Quote:
Shaun Ravens wrote:
These are only my observations, for what it is worth. Perhaps it is as obvious to others as it is to me what you will choose to do with my comments.


Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
Thanks for the rundown on me as you see me, Shaun. It's apt that you do so in the "Spiritual" section.
Wow... No surprise there, but then again, duly noted.



.

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Old 12-20-2006, 05:47 PM   #56
Mike Galante
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Re: Kototama Question

HI Carlos,
When we practiced with Nakazono in 1971 in NY, we would practice A O U then a breath then E I. Or A E I, breath, O U.
The sound A is done with the teeth apart.
The other sounds are teeth closed.
Keep mind in one point and let the sounds emanate from there.
Hope this Helps,
Mike Galante
Of course don't forget the consonants. The vowels are not the only practice. Get the Kototama books.
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Old 12-20-2006, 06:10 PM   #57
Mike Galante
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Re: Kototama Question

Let me add a little solidity to this thread.
Nakazono said that the sounds (vowels) among other things represent different levels of being.
Briefly:

A ah= the level of expansion, the heart centered spiritual seeker, the artist, musician, creative person. A person who achieves a sense of oneness as long as they are playing their instrument, (obvioiusly not all) or creating their art, an innocent state etc.

O - oh = the intellectual level, looking back and remembering. Analysis (opposite of synthesis) knowlege (opposite of wisdom)

U- Uh = the level of survival, food, water, shelter, fear, survival instinct.

E eh = The level of perfect personal freedom and happiness, spiritual attainment, the level of A all the time, no need for the arts or anything else to maintain it. the level of saints.

I EEE = The level of the perfected being, who can also TEACH, a world spiritual teacher, messiah.

If you practice these sounds and the 50 others, you will be able to discern whether a person is mostly on one level or another.

This is MY take on some of it:

eg: A person on the U level is concerned about making a living, eating food, and making love. their gods are on the intellectual level.
A person on the O level, eg. a student, their gods are the artists, musicians.
A person on the A level will look to the saints.

From here it is more conjecture, the E (eh) level saints look to the I level messiahs?
I (EEE) who knows what these guys are? messiahs, etc.world spiritual teachers.


Just to add: What is the sound of a dog howling at the moon?
What is the sound of recognition of a fact?
What is the sound of satisfaction during creation?
(Answers in the next post ! )

So the highest level is I, lowest is U, and in between are E, A, O.
of course they all cannot exist without each other.

Nakazono said that the order of each civilization followed certain sound patterns. So when we practiced, we would practice the various civilizations order. such as aouei, aeiou, etc.
He said that the present civilization to which is entrusted the development of technology, for which mankind must suffer greatly, as spirit takes a back seat.

Next post Izanami and Izanagi

All the Best,
Mike Galante

Last edited by Mike Galante : 12-20-2006 at 06:18 PM.
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Old 12-21-2006, 09:18 AM   #58
Don_Modesto
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Re: Kototama Question

Quote:
Michele Galante wrote:
Next post Izanami and Izanagi
Looking forward to it. Thanks.

Don J. Modesto
St. Petersburg, Florida
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http://www.theaikidodojo.com/
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Old 12-21-2006, 10:48 AM   #59
gregstec
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Re: Kototama Question

[quote=Michele Galante]HI Carlos,
When we practiced with Nakazono in 1971 in NY.../QUOTE]

Hello, it is nice to hear from someone who has actually trained with Nakazono sensei - I have read his books; some more than once. I am curious if he ever commented on the subject of generating a physical vibration ( kind of like what happens when one hums) when practicing the Kototama sounds? I look forward to your response.

Thank you

Greg Steckel
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Old 12-21-2006, 10:06 PM   #60
Mike Galante
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Re: Kototama Question

Hi Greg,

Answers to the previous questions:
Sound of dog howling at the moon: WWUUUUUUUUUU survival level.
Sound of intellectual recognition: OOOOOHHHHH "Oh, Oh yes, I understand"
Sound of creative expression: opening, AAAHHHHH.

To answer your question, "I am curious if he ever commented on the subject of generating a physical vibration ( kind of like what happens when one hums) when practicing the Kototama sounds?"

I am not sure what you mean, practicing the sounds creates a physical vibration, a strong one. It is the transcendental nature of them that we are trying to tune into with the sound. The connection to the spiritual world. He emphasized keeping mind in Tanden.

As promised, the concept of Izanami and Izanagi is simply, the spiraling nature of life force itself. When one has practiced enough, there is an invisible connection between the "opponent" and the Nage. An arching bridge between the participants.
He used to occaisionally demonstrate by keeping one hand, "almost in simulation of a sword" in front of his one point, and pointing only his index finger, foward with the base of his wrist against his Tanden, the finger moving slowly in a small circular (clockwise from his perspective) direction as he moved around the mat, to remind us to keep mind there and try to feel the energy. He would come out with various kototama sounds as well,
The Izanami is the outward flow and the Izanagi is the return flow from Uke. (or is it the other way around) Anyway that is how i recall it.
You see why i firmly believe in strong stilling of the mind and meditation such as Zazen to open these energies which transcend time and space. How can one achieve O Senseis level with just mat practice? It just ain't going to happen. Oh yes, a talented few may achieve a high state. But, it doesn't surprise me that the most talented practitioners of Aikido ever were Ueshiba and Tohei, both
strong practitioners of meditation and prayer. There is a fluidity and deep relaxation in their movement that is too rare.
BTW i see you are a sailor, I have a motor sailor on the Hudson, made by Fales, 1975, 32' i am a member of the nyack boat club.

All the Best,
Maybe when you are in this area, we can practice together.
Mike
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Old 12-22-2006, 09:51 AM   #61
gregstec
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Re: Kototama Question

Quote:
Michele Galante wrote:

I am not sure what you mean, practicing the sounds creates a physical vibration, a strong one. It is the transcendental nature of them that we are trying to tune into with the sound. The connection to the spiritual world.
Hi Mike - thanks for the reply. When practicing the sounds you can generate physical vibrations within your throat by varying the pitch of your voice - lower pitch equates to a stronger and deeper vibration. I have found this to be beneficial in transmitting the sound through the body when practicing the mother and father rhythms. I know Nakazono wrote about the three orders of Kototama, but I mainly focus on the third order (Futonolito) of AIEOU.

Quote:
Michele Galante wrote:
He used to occasionally demonstrate by keeping one hand, "almost in simulation of a sword" in front of his one point, and pointing only his index finger, forward with the base of his wrist against his Tanden, the finger moving slowly in a small circular (clockwise from his perspective) direction as he moved around the mat, to remind us to keep mind there and try to feel the energy.
I first started my Aikido training back in the mid 70s with the Ki Society in Guam. During that time Koretoshi Maruyama (Ki Society chief instructor then) came the the island often and spent a few weeks teaching at a time. He also would demonstrate something similar to emphasize keeping ones mind in the hara so all energy came from (and through) the tanden; which certainly worked well when moving and performing techniques.


Quote:
Michele Galante wrote:
BTW i see you are a sailor, I have a motor sailor on the Hudson, made by Fales, 1975, 32' i am a member of the nyack boat club.

All the Best,
Maybe when you are in this area, we can practice together.
Mike
I am familiar with the Fales 32, there is one in our marina - nice seaworthy boat. We used to sail a 1985 S2 9.2A, but we sold it last year and moved over to the 'dark side' - we now have a President 35 Sundeck double cabin motor yacht that we keep on the Chesapeake bay around Baltimore. The wife got tired of messing with the sails and wanted all the creature comforts that come with a twin diesel boat with generator, refrigerator, air condition, ice maker, etc...

I do like to get around for seminars and maybe we will get a change to train sometime.

Greg Steckel
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Old 12-22-2006, 11:18 AM   #62
Erick Mead
 
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Re: Kototama Question

Quote:
Greg Steckel wrote:
Quote:
Michele Galante wrote:
I am not sure what you mean, practicing the sounds creates a physical vibration, a strong one. It is the transcendental nature of them that we are trying to tune into with the sound. The connection to the spiritual world. He emphasized keeping mind in Tanden.
When practicing the sounds you can generate physical vibrations within your throat by varying the pitch of your voice - lower pitch equates to a stronger and deeper vibration. I have found this to be beneficial in transmitting the sound through the body when practicing the mother and father rhythms. I know Nakazono wrote about the three orders of Kototama, but I mainly focus on the third order (Futonolito) of AIEOU.
The nature of kotodama is part of something much broader connected with the fundamental human condition and not limited to Japanese culture or its specific language.

If there is any truth to the old saw about Kobo Daishi basing his Japanese syllabary in part on Sanskrit, then there is a common basis at the level of sounds and root meaning between the kotodama system and other Indo-European expressions of the same sensibilites (feelings) from sounded forms -- as in, say -- Gregorian chant in Latin and Orthodox chant in Greek and Russian. There are Hindu and Buddhist examples also. They all move me at a place below categorical language.

That's why opera doesn't need translation, and the quasi-vocal rock riffs of guitars on a Boston album, the moaning, sometimes unintelligible vocals of Audioslave or Live -- and almost any bagpipe piece you care to name -- are words beyond words.

We needn't necessarily be tied to the kotodama formulary to grasp the application of its principles to what is all around us even now.

Kris Delmhorst paraphrased an old Robert Browning poem in a wonderful song, " Galuppi Baldassare" ostensibly about Venice and the named Venetian operatic composer. It captures something of the play of fundamental but uncategorical meaning in sounds:
Quote:
And the minor third so bitter, the six chord like a sigh,
suspension, solution, asking must we die, must we die must we die?
And the seventh says well fellas, life might not last, but we can try…
A cut:
http://www.krisdelmhorst.com/albums/...baldassare.mp3

The whole lyric: http://www.krisdelmhorst.com/lyrics/galuppi.html

And the Browning original: http://www.victorianweb.org/authors/rb/toccata.html
Quote:
Oh Galuppi, Baldassaro, this is very sad to find!
I can hardly misconceive you; it would prove me deaf and blind;
But although I take your meaning, 'tis with such a heavy mind!

Last edited by Erick Mead : 12-22-2006 at 11:23 AM.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
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Old 12-22-2006, 11:53 AM   #63
gregstec
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Re: Kototama Question

Quote:
Erick Mead wrote:
The nature of kotodama is part of something much broader connected with the fundamental human condition and not limited to Japanese culture or its specific language.

If there is any truth to the old saw about Kobo Daishi basing his Japanese syllabary in part on Sanskrit, then there is a common basis at the level of sounds and root meaning between the kotodama system and other Indo-European expressions of the same sensibilites (feelings) from sounded forms -- as in, say -- Gregorian chant in Latin and Orthodox chant in Greek and Russian. There are Hindu and Buddhist examples also. They all move me at a place below categorical language.

That's why opera doesn't need translation, and the quasi-vocal rock riffs of guitars on a Boston album, the moaning, sometimes unintelligible vocals of Audioslave or Live -- and almost any bagpipe piece you care to name -- are words beyond words.

We needn't necessarily be tied to the kotodama formulary to grasp the application of its principles to what is all around us even now.
Sort of the point I was eluding to with the relationship between a sound and a physical vibration or harmonization within the body. Interpreting the meaning of sounds we hear is filtered by ones understanding of the language. However, when you 'feel' sound there is no misinterpretation since it is the basis of all energy; which is vibration/resonance/rhythm of sub-atomic particles. When someone says the 'music moves me' they really mean it - the music rhythms are synchronizing with their internal bodily rhythms. How does all this relate to Aikido? Well, it can lead to a better understanding that may help to recognize and use your internal energies.

Greg Steckel
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Old 12-22-2006, 01:19 PM   #64
Erick Mead
 
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Re: Kototama Question

Quote:
Greg Steckel wrote:
Sort of the point I was eluding to ...
Sort of a backhanded description of ura waza, eh?

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
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Old 12-22-2006, 01:28 PM   #65
gregstec
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Re: Kototama Question

Quote:
Erick Mead wrote:
Sort of a backhanded description of ura waza, eh?
Well, we have to keep up the esoteric tradition and not make things too clear

Greg
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Old 12-23-2006, 05:42 PM   #66
Mike Galante
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Re: Kototama Question

Greg,

Exactly, the assumption I often make is that most people here will be over analyzing all this Aikido stuff- coming from the head.
Although the analytical mind, is needed, the feeling nature is the link to this transcendence. So much more sensing and much less thinking. That is what the practice of the sounds does, opens up these different areas so we may become conscious of them and make it ours. O Sensei said practice as if you were in water.

Hard to talk about things we "might" be able to master sometime in the future. Sometimes I feel quite foolish speaking about these things but I feel that so few practitioners of the Art of Peace are achieving the ultimate goals, including myself.

BTW, I agree with your wife, the sails, and lines are all too much. My wife, too, we haven't put the sails up in year and a half. Hope to see you in New York.

All the Best,
Mike
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Old 12-27-2006, 11:33 AM   #67
gregstec
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Re: Kototama Question

Quote:
Michele Galante wrote:
Exactly, the assumption I often make is that most people here will be over analyzing all this Aikido stuff- coming from the head.
Although the analytical mind, is needed, the feeling nature is the link to this transcendence. So much more sensing and much less thinking. That is what the practice of the sounds does, opens up these different areas so we may become conscious of them and make it ours. O Sensei said practice as if you were in water.
Hi Mike,

I know what you mean - sometimes you can really think yourself into confusion. Although others may disagree with your analytic conclusions, you will always be right with any decision you come to by intuition or feeling - it may not be correct for everyone, but it is certainly correct for you and it is something you can live with, etc. Hope to see you on the mat sometime...


best regards

Greg Steckel
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Old 01-01-2007, 12:18 AM   #68
Mike Galante
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Re: Kototama Question

I agree, Greg,
Man, I wish I had a dime for every time I over analyzed.
It seems that we have been trained to think that if we are intelligent, and can demonstrate it, that that this is the cat's meow, the brass ring, holy grail, and mother lode! That this makes us superior to others. Ask Einstein how he came to the conclusions he did. He starts talking about God.
Then if you go to study Zen, you have to let go of all of it!

Mind is the slayer of the soul, so says the bible.

Happy New year,
Mike,
(looking forward to that meeting sometime)
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Old 01-01-2007, 08:48 AM   #69
Jorge Garcia
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Re: Kototama Question

Quote:
Carlos Martin Ruedas Guevarra wrote:
Hello People!

I got a copy of John Steven's Secrets of Aikido, and I'm interested in the Kototama. My question is, how is Kototama chanted? for example, is the kototama A-O-U-E-I chanted in one breath or one vowel, one breath? Thanks!

To Carlos, who asked the question on 3-10-05, I think there is an example of the Kotodama being chanted at the end of the Shinto priest Koichi Barrish video at http://video.google.com/videoplay?do...80&q=aikido+ki

Best wishes,
Jorge

"It is the philosophy that gives meaning to the method of training."
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Old 01-01-2007, 09:49 PM   #70
Mike Galante
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Re: Kototama Question

Jorge,
I checked out the video, but didn't hear any chant at the end.
Mike
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Old 01-02-2007, 09:34 AM   #71
Jorge Garcia
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Re: Kototama Question

Quote:
Michele Galante wrote:
Jorge,
I checked out the video, but didn't hear any chant at the end.
Mike
Some kind of chanting starts at the 25 minute place on the counter. Right about the 26:15 mark, I think he talks about the chant using the letters but it seems to me he was adding some other stuff as well.
Best wishes,
Jorge

"It is the philosophy that gives meaning to the method of training."
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Old 01-02-2007, 11:11 AM   #72
Mike Galante
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Re: Kototama Question

Thanks Jorge,
Sensei Barrish said that they are practicing SU, O, A, E , I.
Su the sound of the physical, connecting all material, and people.
O-intellectual
A- level of spiritual seeker (artist, musician, etc.)
E (eh) perfect personal freedom and happiness (don't need the instrument, or paint brush to achieve this)
I (EEE) Level of the world teacher, who has achieved E but can now teach and impart it to others.

When we practiced with Nakazono, he would change the order of the sounds.

A O U E I symbolizing the present civilization

A E I O U the coming third civilization

They were done by one breath the first three (either aou or aei) then the second breath the other two.

This was done slowly, eg if your breath cycle was 30 seconds, then 10 seconds for each of the first three sounds and 15 seconds each for the second two sounds.

I would like to point out that these are vowels, not only in Japanese, but in English as well.

He emphasized the sound coming from the Tanden.

Thanks for the opportunity to share,
Mike
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Old 01-02-2007, 11:13 AM   #73
Mike Galante
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Cool Re: Kototama Question

Thanks Jorge,
Sensei Barrish said that they are practicing SU, O, A, E , I.
Su the sound of the physical, connecting all material, and people.
O-intellectual
A- level of spiritual seeker (artist, musician, etc.)
E (eh) perfect personal freedom and happiness (don't need the instrument, or paint brush to achieve this)
I (EEE) Level of the world teacher, who has achieved E but can now teach and impart it to others.

When we practiced with Nakazono, he would change the order of the sounds.

A O U E I symbolizing the present civilization

A E I O U the coming third civilization

They were done by one breath the first three (either aou or aei) then the second breath the other two.

This was done slowly, eg if your breath cycle was 30 seconds, then 10 seconds for each of the first three sounds. On the second breath,15 seconds each for the second two sounds.

I would like to point out that these are vowels, not only in Japanese, but in English as well.

He emphasized the sound coming from the Tanden.

There are many other sounds we practiced, the gods of Kototama, we can talk about that sometime.

Thanks for the opportunity to share,

Mike
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Old 01-02-2007, 12:21 PM   #74
Michael Young
 
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Re: Kototama Question

Hi everyone,

Though this is somewhat of a "Seminar Plug", but I figured some of you may be interested since Gleason Sensei's book has been mentioned on this thread a few times:
Gleason Sensei will be conducting a seminar at our dojo, Alamo City Aikido, on February 23-25th, 2007. The details can be found here
I'll have a flyer with all of the cost and schedule information up by the end of the day today hopefully. Gleason Sensei is very approachable and he often uses descriptions of Kototama principles during his teaching, relating his understanding directly to the physical practice shown.

Best Regards,

Mike
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Old 01-06-2007, 09:54 PM   #75
Mike Galante
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Cool Re: Kototama Question

Quote:
Rob Liberti wrote:
Shaun,

Most of that is difficult to describe because they end up being feelings, but I can give one example. When I consider the kotodama sound of "AHH" while practicing technique, I found it really helped in a tangeable way with respect to the direction of my study. Keeping both myself and the uke endlessly expanding throughout the technique has been quite helpful to me personally. Especially in ikkyo (as opposed to shoving the person's hand down).

What are your thoughts Shaun? Everyone else?

Rob
Try doing katate-tori tenkan with the initial sound uuu and as you turn and as you change to palms skyward, change the sound to aaa, as you mentioned. This will unite heaven with earth (U)
This helps to contract the ki (u) and absorb ukes energy as he comes as you breathe him in, then out again (a) giving him the now ascending, (transcending) transforming rising, compassionate energy.
Spiritual alchemy.

You do the hokey pokey and turn yourself about
That's what it's all about!

PS: Nakazono would, amongst many others, have us practice, the sound Ahhh, Uuuuu, then again Ahhh in one breath. The sound Ahh is practiced with teeth apart (whether combined with consonants or not) all other sounds are done with teeth together.
Hope this helps. Also see my other posts about this.
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