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Old 06-01-2005, 02:44 PM   #51
Stefan Stenudd
 
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Tanden and dantian

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
I think "tan den" is the pronunciation of the words "dan tian" which is the "cinnabar field" (note that cinnabar, mercuric oxide, is red) which refers to a more or less "field of change" or the place where changes take place (cinnabar easily reverts to liquid mercury when heat drives off the oxygen in combination).
I would say that tanden is transcribed from the Japanese, and dantian from Chinese (pinyin transcription). Tan/dan indeed means cinnabar, but its foremost meaning used like this is simply red, the color, not the cinnabar chemical properties.
Thus: the red rice field.
I would say that the color is used to imply "fiery", i.e. a source of great power.

I include the kanji for tanden/dantian, though in a rather free calligraphic version of mine, for your amusement.

Stefan Stenudd
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Old 06-01-2005, 02:44 PM   #52
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Re: A Word of Concern to all Aikidoka...

This article is on Yoga but I find that it applies very much to this topic and some of the "spiritual" aspects of Aikido

http://www.yogajournal.com/views/319_1.cfm?ctsrc=nls154

Some highlights, these quotes pretty much sum up my feelings on this subject, just substitute Aikido for Yoga.

Quote:
I am not a yoga kinda guy. Yoga people are sensitive, aware, largely sober, slender, double-jointed humorless vegans who are concerned with their own spiritual welfare and don't hesitate to tell you about it. They are spiritually intense and consequently enormously boring in the manner of folks who, in their own self-absorption, feel you ought to be alerted as to the quantity and texture of their last bowel movement.
Quote:
The Enlightened Masters I have read are invariably incomprehensible and entirely incapable of constructing a single coherent English sentence. I'm not discussing someone like Erich Schiffmann, who's actually a very good writer. What I'm talking about here is Flat Out Enlightenment, which is mostly unintelligible gibberish and reads to me like someone swimming through a thick custard of delirium.

Last edited by Michael Neal : 06-01-2005 at 02:46 PM.
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Old 06-01-2005, 03:14 PM   #53
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Re: A Word of Concern to all Aikidoka...

Quote:
Adam Bauder wrote:
The famous "ki test," for lack of a better description, is on the surface a physical one. And as I think you already know (since I've heard you explain in your own words in other threads) the test is not given with strength, but with a relaxed body. Only the weight of the person's arm giving the test (more or less), is needed for optimal biofeedback (at least as I understand it). As it was explained to me, we cannot directly "touch" the mind. We are, however, able to test the body and attempt to become a mirror of the mind with which we are testing. So if the person receiving the test's mind is calm, then the push, or ki test, will have no effect. If the person has any desire to push back or to become passive, then the person will be moved or become tense.

Of course, as has been mentioned, for a standing test ... to help calm the mind, one can focus on the one point in the lower abdomen. If one is sitting cross legged, then one would perhaps focus on the one point existing on one of the ankles or below it. From this position, a ki test could then be applied while the person leans back, while focusing on the one point moving out further in front.
Hi Adam:

I understand what you're saying and I've done these same things for many, many years. On a substantive level, a ki-test is purely physical. Naturally there's more to it than that, which is why you can get so many people who demonstrate a "ki test" by showing a similar "resistance" yet they're doing it completely wrong.

The point is that there IS a right way to do a ki test and it DOES involve resistance and/or forces... just a special kind of coordination to bring about those forces. That resistance can be measured and felt, so the laws of physics apply to it, no matter what mental visualizations you're using to create that correct resistance. I personally can think of several good visualizations that work... but I like ones that work in just a few minutes, not the ones that are so vague that the students are spending months trying to get just minimal results.

You, Ted, and others seem to favor a vague imagination that results in the body finally learning to do what you want it to do, in a relaxed way (I *hope*.... I'm going to be disappointed if I drop into someone's dojo someday and find out they were only talking the theory while doing something else). Regardless of what you're visualizing, though, your body must be accomplishing certain things for the forces to manifest themselves... and that's where we should be able to have a common conversation as opposed to mysterious discussions that always hint at secret knowledge, vague visualizations, yada, yada, yada. (This is the place for someone to hop in, if they believe it, and insist the forces the tester is feeling are due to "ki" and not physically explainable kinesiology).

Craig mentioned that he could place the "one point" where he wanted it. I'm trying to get him to elucidate more so I can get a better grasp of his visualization. That's all, just his visualization. If he can do the ki tests, then regardless of whatever visualization he uses I already know what he's doing physically.

This thing about a "state of mind"... you can't feel it. You *can* feel some very subtle things once you develop the skills (it's called "listening" by the Chinese), but that's most likely an interpretation of data and nothing at all to do with any perception of someone's "state of mind" (if someone wants to bet against me, we can set up some double-blind tests pretty quickly and I've already been there). On the other hand, I can put two fingers on a plum or a tomato and tell you how ripe it is.... scarey, huh? Our tactile senses are very complex and sophisticated.

My personal suggestion is that instead of focusing on the visualization, people should spend a lot more time examining what is going on and how it works... I think progress lies more in that direction and less in the direction of emptying the mind and visualizing the center of the universe. If I had to point to any one thing wrong with what I'm hearing, it's the fact that a deliberate, focused "intent" (what O-Sensei called the "divine will") isn't being used and vague visualizations are taking its place. Great progress can be made quickly once the body and the will coordination are learned.

Regards,

Mike
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Old 06-01-2005, 03:20 PM   #54
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Re: Tanden and dantian

Quote:
Stefan Stenudd wrote:
I would say that tanden is transcribed from the Japanese, and dantian from Chinese (pinyin transcription). Tan/dan indeed means cinnabar, but its foremost meaning used like this is simply red, the color, not the cinnabar chemical properties.
Thus: the red rice field.
I would say that the color is used to imply "fiery", i.e. a source of great power.
Hi Stefan:

I think a quick Google search will show you that "cinnabar", etc., is the accepted meaning, implying a transmutation.
Quote:
I include the kanji for tanden/dantian, though in a rather free calligraphic version of mine, for your amusement.
Nice. Very bold.

Mike
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Old 06-01-2005, 03:57 PM   #55
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Re: A Word of Concern to all Aikidoka...

Hi Mike,
Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
You, Ted, and others seem to favor a vague imagination that results in the body finally learning to do what you want it to do, in a relaxed way ...
I can't speak for Ted, but I do not favor vague imaginations . Nor do I only use visualization for learning balance/mind/body coordination, whatever. I was also not trying to be vague in what I wrote. I was actually trying to describe the thought process involved, that I've learned, when focusing on the one point. It's just another tool. So, perhaps I've missed the point of your question.
Quote:
The point is that there IS a right way to do a ki test and it DOES involve resistance and/or forces..
Of course. However, for clarification are you focusing on the person giving or receiving the ki test? Or both? Giving a good ki test is, I think, more difficult than receiving one. Learning how is not immediately difficult, but can take some time to refine. And it can be taught without any mention of the "one point".
Quote:
and that's where we should be able to have a common conversation as opposed to mysterious discussions that always hint at secret knowledge, vague visualizations, yada, yada, yada.
I was only addressing part of a question. I wasn't attempting to define a teaching curriculum. I'll see if I can be more on target, next time.
Quote:
Craig mentioned that he could place the "one point" where he wanted it. I'm trying to get him to elucidate more so I can get a better grasp of his visualization. That's all, just his visualization
And that's all I was offering. Well, at least my visualization.
Quote:
You *can* feel some very subtle things once you develop the skills (it's called "listening" by the Chinese)
Actually, I was going to mention "listening" (with quotes), but I felt my post was already too long.
Quote:
My personal suggestion is that instead of focusing on the visualization, people should spend a lot more time examining what is going on and how it works...
Visualization is not all that I do. So I guess I can say it's not my "focus". Like I said it's just a tool.
Quote:
If I had to point to any one thing wrong with what I'm hearing, it's the fact that a deliberate, focused "intent" (what O-Sensei called the "divine will") isn't being used and vague visualizations are taking its place.
Well, once again, sorry if I was being vague. Focusing on the one-point should not be vague when visualized.

Okay, this has gotten too long. I'm off to happy hour!

thanks,
Adam

Last edited by Adman : 06-01-2005 at 03:59 PM.
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Old 06-01-2005, 04:38 PM   #56
Stefan Stenudd
 
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Google

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
I think a quick Google search will show you that "cinnabar", etc., is the accepted meaning, implying a transmutation.
A Google search can show just about anything you want
Any Japanese or Chinese dictionary will translate it "red", particularly in combination with other words. For example, see Nelson, 2nd revised edition, 163, p.82. "Cinnabar" is not implying a transmutation, primarily, but simply that substance, which is red in color.

Stefan Stenudd
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Old 06-01-2005, 04:41 PM   #57
Mike Sigman
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Re: A Word of Concern to all Aikidoka...

Quote:
Adam Bauder wrote:
Giving a good ki test is, I think, more difficult than receiving one. Learning how is not immediately difficult, but can take some time to refine. And it can be taught without any mention of the "one point".
Excellent. I was talking about doing ki tests. If doing them can be taught without any mention of "one point", would you mind explaining how a very simple ki-test, say pushing on Tohei's forearm while he stands on one leg, is done? I can't seem to get a coherent answer from anyone on something even as simple as this one. And it's not very mysterious, once you learn how. Certainly anyone who can do it well, can analyse their body mechanics and articulate them.

Regards,

Mike
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Old 06-01-2005, 04:43 PM   #58
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Re: Google

Quote:
Stefan Stenudd wrote:
A Google search can show just about anything you want
Any Japanese or Chinese dictionary will translate it "red", particularly in combination with other words. For example, see Nelson, 2nd revised edition, 163, p.82. "Cinnabar" is not implying a transmutation, primarily, but simply that substance, which is red in color.
Hi Stefan:

But I was not talking about how the term was used generally; I was talking about how it's translated in respect to the "Dan tien". The accepted reference is to the old alchemical connotation with cinnabar.

Mike
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Old 06-01-2005, 05:33 PM   #59
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Cinnabar

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
I was talking about how it's translated in respect to the "Dan tien". The accepted reference is to the old alchemical connotation with cinnabar.
Hi Mike,
I see. But isn't the concept dantian older than the alchemy in question?
My question is not at all rhetorical, I just don't know. I have a feeling, though

Stefan Stenudd
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Old 06-01-2005, 10:17 PM   #60
Mike Sigman
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Re: Cinnabar

Quote:
Stefan Stenudd wrote:
Hi Mike,
I see. But isn't the concept dantian older than the alchemy in question?
My question is not at all rhetorical, I just don't know. I have a feeling, though
Logically, it's not. I have never seen it translated as anything but the cinnabar translation with the alchemical context. You are the first person I have ever seen insist that it means "red".

I suspect this whole concept comes via India, but it's hard to say. The Chinese system is more simple and functional than the Indian system we now see (India's system may have been less complex in the past, though). The idea of the middle dantien being the area of mixing and change is quite old. I have a number of translated texts from the old Chinese and they all refer to the cinnabar/alchemy/elixir connotation.

FWIW

Mike
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Old 06-01-2005, 11:49 PM   #61
Adman
 
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Re: A Word of Concern to all Aikidoka...

Mike,
Quote:
If doing them can be taught without any mention of "one point", would you mind explaining how a very simple ki-test, say pushing on Tohei's forearm while he stands on one leg, is done?
You may have already seen this article:
A Test Worth More than a Thousand Words by William Reed.

It covers a lot of things I would probably muddy up in explaining.

But, if asked, I would say something to this effect when describing how to do a basic standing ki test:
[disclaimer]I am not intending to be the authority on the subject - just my take on it.[/dislaimer]
  1. Stand up on toes. Then settle straight down, heels touching lightly, without shifting back. You should be able to stand on your toes again without leaning forward.
  2. Take note of your posture. Are the knees and ankles relaxed? The entire body should not be leaning forward at the ankles. Rather it should be bent slightly at the waist.
  3. Take a half step forward (hanmi) at an angle towards the person to be tested, with the leg closest to them. Take note of posture once more.
  4. Test with a relaxed cupped hand (not crossing body), touching fingers first, at the shoulder of the person being tested, and with a steady light pressure, push straight back.
  5. From there, the article link above explains different levels of testing, intent in testing, etc.
From the above, I would add while testing, make sure your elbow is relaxed and comfortably down (it wouldn't be straight down at this angle of testing). While practicing the test, the person being tested can brush down on the testing hand. It shouldn't be moved. I would also add that I'm sure I'm missing something.

The posture of the tester should remain constant. No leaning in to add momentum to the test. Instead, you should feel any "rebound" from your test, directed into your back leg down through your heel. The test should be practiced to be as consistent as possible.

Standing up on toes is just a tool to get you started and is eventually dropped when the person has developed the right sense of posture.

Speaking of posture. When all is said and done and both parties have it, the only thing left is the mind. The "mirror" analogy I mentioned earlier allows the person being tested to know what's going on in their mind. It's not meant as a way for the person testing to know for certain the other's state of mind. However, like your ripe fruit example, the person testing should (if they're "listening") be able to to feel tension, passiveness, apprehension, etc. So maybe some insight is revealed.

Now, if I was to test Tohei sensei in the manner you described? I'd change from a push, to a grasp and push (this time with elbow straight down) and wonder what in the hell am I doing here?

thanks,
Adam
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Old 06-02-2005, 03:17 AM   #62
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Re: A Word of Concern to all Aikidoka...

Typical aikiweb, a moron posts and a serious discussion breaks out...

Adam, nice take on the test, I'd also agree strongly with a previous post which said the person testing often has the hardest task and needs to know what they're doing. Ki tests with beginners is always a rather strange experience as you can pass a beginners test with strength and rigidity.

Concerning the one-point/focus debate, we're possibly slack in our usage of the terms but we consider the one-point a fixed point under the navel (the point normally covered by the palms in tai-chi when doing the final relaxation breaths) and focus as a pure visualization, so movable.

On a related point, does anyone else use terms like anchors and props?
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Old 06-02-2005, 11:57 AM   #63
Mike Sigman
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Re: A Word of Concern to all Aikidoka...

Quote:
Adam Bauder wrote:
Mike,

You may have already seen this article:
A Test Worth More than a Thousand Words by William Reed.
It's an interesting article, although I have no idea of William Reed's background, etc. My opinion, having finally read the criteria for "ki development" ranks, is that Ki Society stuff is too slow and is not really about teaching Ki Society members how to really do things. If someone wants to rebutt me with something more than innuendo, mysterious remarks, and simply asserting that I wouldn't understand, I'd be willing to listen.
Quote:
But, if asked, I would say something to this effect when describing how to do a basic standing ki test:
[disclaimer]I am not intending to be the authority on the subject - just my take on it.[/dislaimer]
  1. Stand up on toes. Then settle straight down, heels touching lightly, without shifting back. You should be able to stand on your toes again without leaning forward.
  2. Take note of your posture. Are the knees and ankles relaxed? The entire body should not be leaning forward at the ankles. Rather it should be bent slightly at the waist.
  3. Take a half step forward (hanmi) at an angle towards the person to be tested, with the leg closest to them. Take note of posture once more.
  4. Test with a relaxed cupped hand (not crossing body), touching fingers first, at the shoulder of the person being tested, and with a steady light pressure, push straight back.
  5. From there, the article link above explains different levels of testing, intent in testing, etc.
From the above, I would add while testing, make sure your elbow is relaxed and comfortably down (it wouldn't be straight down at this angle of testing). While practicing the test, the person being tested can brush down on the testing hand. It shouldn't be moved. I would also add that I'm sure I'm missing something.

The posture of the tester should remain constant. No leaning in to add momentum to the test. Instead, you should feel any "rebound" from your test, directed into your back leg down through your heel. The test should be practiced to be as consistent as possible.

Standing up on toes is just a tool to get you started and is eventually dropped when the person has developed the right sense of posture.

Speaking of posture. When all is said and done and both parties have it, the only thing left is the mind. The "mirror" analogy I mentioned earlier allows the person being tested to know what's going on in their mind. It's not meant as a way for the person testing to know for certain the other's state of mind. However, like your ripe fruit example, the person testing should (if they're "listening") be able to to feel tension, passiveness, apprehension, etc. So maybe some insight is revealed.
Thanks for the description, Adam. I think that approach is vague, etc., and perhaps I'll meet up with a Ki-Society member at some time and demonstrate what I'm talking about. It could be a fun discussion. Hmmmmm.... let me add that while I think the Ki-Society approach *appears* to be far too slow and vague, learning correctly is not something you can do in a quick show-and-tell. I think I can convey the overall picture in a couple of 6-hour days, but learning how to do this stuff takes practice. Getting a grasp of the basics can do a lot for someone really interested and curious enough to keep looking. My experience has been that "instructors" who are looking to "add in" some of this stuff into their "already fine martial arts" are simply wasting their times.... their body mechanics are already so fixed that only one in a thousand can go back and correct things, IMO.

FWIW

Mike
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Old 06-03-2005, 01:16 AM   #64
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Re: A Word of Concern to all Aikidoka...

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
I disagree with you. Although a person's center of gravity is generally in that area, the center of gravity, as you have noted below, is a relative thing. I've never heard a serious discussion about the dantien in which it being the "center of gravity" was of primary importance or central to the concept, frankly.
Quote:
Bill Douglas wrote:
The Complete Idiot's Guide to T'ai Chi & Qi Gong pg. 22 ...Our dan tien, or center of gravity, is located about 1 1/2 to 3 inches below the navel near the center of the body-our vertical axis, or our line of posture...
Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
...I can focus my mind on the rings of Saturn, but it doesn't do anything, so I would ask that you clarify your use of the term "anywhere".
Anywhere it is effective.
Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
...Insofar as Koichi Tohei not being a traditionalist, certainly he is or he wouldn't be using the term "ki" and all its attendant terminlogy, usages, and demonstrations.
Newton used the western tradition of mathematics to create the calculus. Its creation changed mathematics. Newton was not a traditionalist, but an innovator.

Koichi Tohei is similar in that he innovates. He introduced ki testing, kiatsu-ho, ki development exercises and other practices to his style of aikido. His organization is not called the Ki Society, but is actually the Ki Research Society. A strange name if he is a traditionalist.
Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
...What Tohei does is take the "ki" that was already a part of Aikido, add a lot of self-help psychology, etc., and turn it into a quasi-religion.
What K. Tohei and other instructors of his generation (e.g. Tomiki, Shioda and Saito) did was to give structure to learning aikido. Before that, aikido was a subjective experience. It was taught more like ju-jutsu. They developed specific approaches to learning the art.

Because his other two teachers, Tetsuju Ogura (misogi) and Tenpu Nakamura (yoga meditation and breathing exercise) did spiritual practices, his style reflects that training. One could argue that these were quasi-religious practices to start.

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
He's not the first person to make ki into a quasi-religion, BTW. It's simply a variation of a theme that is encountered in other Asian countries, including India.
Certainly groups like Li Hongzhi and Falun Gong keep ki/qi/chi on the front page.

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
I can pretty easily establish that chakra's are "points of power" and that the "dan tian" is also a "point of power" and that the concept derives originally from India. I'll be happy to do so, if you'd like. In other words, I won't just assert things or speak cryptically ...
Then answer two west vs. east questions.
  1. Western science can pick-up subtle electrical patterns on the human body. Yet there are no corresponding patterns in energy or chemical flow which match the traditional patterns of energy as described in Chinese meridians or Indian chakras. If these are points of power, why hasn't there been any discovery of related power patterns in Western science?
  2. If you believe that eastern power as described in chakras or meridians are a subtle energy, doesn't that lack of detection indicate it is not a substantial force in the human body?
Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
and I'm asking you and Craig, if you really understand these things, to try and explain a few simple concepts that have been brought up by your own declarative statements.
I cannot speak for Craig, but I believe I and others have tried our best to answer your questions. However our answers do not fit your requirements. Perhaps these answers are not for the questions you seek.
Quote:
Introduction to The Body: Towards an Eastern Mind-Body Theory by Yuasa Yasuo pgs. 1-2
...Eastern philosophies generally treat mind-body unity as an achievement, rather than an essential relation. This insight relates a number of formerly disconnected observations about Asian culture. First, it is clearer why meditation and philosophical insight are inseparable in the Eastern traditions: wisdom must be physically as well as intellectually developed. Truth is not only a way of thinking about the world; it is a mode of being in the world, part of which includes one's own bodily existence. Thus, meditation and thinking are not to be separated.

Second, if the unity of mind and body (or "body-mind" in the Japanese idiom) is achieved, insights can be tested by deeds. This point explains why satori in Zen Buddhism is verified by action rather than by asserted propositions. Furthermore, this achieved unity accounts for the immediacy and physicality in Zen descriptions of enlightenment: the Zen Buddhist's goal is said to be knowing the truth as one knows the water to be cold when one drinks it. That is, knowledge of the truth is a psychophysical awareness beyond mere intellection...
Answers are not in books or on a forum. They are achieved through training.

Last edited by tedehara : 06-03-2005 at 01:20 AM.

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Old 06-03-2005, 08:26 AM   #65
Mike Sigman
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Re: A Word of Concern to all Aikidoka...

Quote:
Ted Ehara wrote:
Quote:
Mike wrote:
Although a person's center of gravity is generally in that area, the center of gravity, as you have noted below, is a relative thing. I've never heard a serious discussion about the dantien in which it being the "center of gravity" was of primary importance or central to the concept, frankly.
Quote:
Bill Douglas wrote:
The Complete Idiot's Guide to T'ai Chi & Qi Gong pg. 22 ...Our dan tien, or center of gravity, is located about 1 1/2 to 3 inches below the navel near the center of the body-our vertical axis, or our line of posture...
Hmmmm.... I rest my case, Ted. Bill Douglas is a guy with no credentials, no real knowledge, etc., in Taiji who promoted himself to some publishers, started the "World Tai Chi Day" that attracts the New Age crowd, etc. His central idea is that Taiji is good for "stress relief". He's parroting the same rubbish about the "center of gravity" that a lot of amateurs do, but he's totally clueless about what qi, jin, etc., are. Do you really think that the dumb-ole-Asians were too stupid to find a simple way of naming the center of gravity and instead chose to name the area "dan tien", referring to "change" and body technology, because they weren't as smart as the amateurs? It might help you to get an understanding of the concept of body movement in the ki paradigm and you'll understand why "center of gravity" is a side issue to the discussion.
Quote:
Ted wrote:
Quote:
Mike wrote:
I would ask that you clarify your use of the term "anywhere"
Anywhere it is effective.
How about clarifying the conditions for it being effective, then, since it's still vague.
Quote:
Newton used the western tradition of mathematics to create the calculus. Its creation changed mathematics. Newton was not a traditionalist, but an innovator.
True. Newton discovered and rigorously proved some totally new concepts, as history shows. In no way does Koichi Tohei's accomplishments put him on a level with Sir Isaac Newton, Ted. Let's don't even go there, if we're going to have a rational discussion.
Quote:
Koichi Tohei is similar in that he innovates. He introduced ki testing, kiatsu-ho, ki development exercises and other practices to his style of aikido.
Ted, Tohei modified the style of teaching. That's all he did. There are ki development exercises in the Aiki-Taiso (that's what they're for!!!), suburi, kokyu-ho-dosa, etc. In other words, he focused more on Ki, but he did not introduce any basic function to Aikido that was not already there... unless you want to argue that O-Sensei didn't espouse the use of Ki in his Aikido?
Quote:
His organization is not called the Ki Society, but is actually the Ki Research Society. A strange name if he is a traditionalist.
Er, it's a not uncommon thing in both Japan and China to name an offshoot a "research society".
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What K. Tohei and other instructors of his generation (e.g. Tomiki, Shioda and Saito) did was to give structure to learning aikido. Before that, aikido was a subjective experience. It was taught more like ju-jutsu. They developed specific approaches to learning the art.
Different people modify their Aikido in different ways, Ted... but that doesn't mean they have come up with something new. Tomiki combined judo with Aikido; Shioda tried to codify Aikido, etc.... but those are varying approaches, not radical innovations.
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Because his other two teachers, Tetsuju Ogura (misogi) and Tenpu Nakamura (yoga meditation and breathing exercise) did spiritual practices, his style reflects that training. One could argue that these were quasi-religious practices to start.
Sure, but Tohei has added his own quasi-relgion to the original Aikido. It's quite a marketing tool. I think it might be illuminating for you to visit with some of the better level Chinese martial artists who have great qi skills, Ted. It might help you put into perspective that what Tohei does/sells/teaches is not a radical innovation in the Asian world of qi and qigongs.
Quote:
Then answer two west vs. east questions.
  1. Western science can pick-up subtle electrical patterns on the human body. Yet there are no corresponding patterns in energy or chemical flow which match the traditional patterns of energy as described in Chinese meridians or Indian chakras. If these are points of power, why hasn't there been any discovery of related power patterns in Western science?
  2. If you believe that eastern power as described in chakras or meridians are a subtle energy, doesn't that lack of detection indicate it is not a substantial force in the human body?
OK, I'll respond. Notice I won't just go silent with potentially embarrassing questions, the way Craig and you sometimes do... and I won't give cryptic, supercilious answers trying to imply that you aren't in on the secrets, etc. If you know these things, Ted, it will be apparent in your answers and how factually you can respond.... I don't accept, and neither do others, I think, that mysterious and supercilious non-answers indicate knowledge or skills of any sort. That works for the in-house believers, not with the outside world, IMO.

Your first and second questions both assume that "power" = "electrical patterns" and you're basically wondering why electron flow hasn't been shown as a major component of the qi-paradigm. How many times have I said that "qi" is an umbrella term that includes a number of "unknown forces" on this list? I've also said (and it can be easily checked) that the qi paradigm derives from the flow of strength, within the human body (remember my thumbnail sketch of the musculo-tendon "channels" and how they evolved into the acupuncture meridians?). In other words, the basic assumptions of your question are meaningless. There is already established that a low-voltage current actually does take place within the fascia system (see James L. Oschman's book for a number of sources), so electron flow is *one component*, but the total discussion of "power" has to include strength, lines of strength, blood sugar, the central nervous system interaction, and other components. For instance, the "power" of the swadisthana chakra has to do with it being a center of several body functions that are loosely termed "power", but that doesn't mean we need to get out the milliamp-meters.
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I cannot speak for Craig, but I believe I and others have tried our best to answer your questions. However our answers do not fit your requirements. Perhaps these answers are not for the questions you seek.
Answers are not in books or on a forum. They are achieved through training.
I say that's a dodge, Ted. I've been involved in hundreds of ki and kokyu type discussions over the years and no one who knows anything has to resort to that sort of vague obfuscation.... common ground and a viable discussion can quickly and easily be found among people who really have any knowledge of the basics. What you're apparently doing is thinking that the specific in-house beliefs and rituals of the "Ki Research Society" are somehow representative of the greater body of ki knowledge ... not even close. The question is whether you want to adhere to the idea that the real stuff only comes through Tohei's mouth or whether you're really interested in the subject (as opposed to the religion) enough to get out there and look around. Face it.... you cannot stop the progress that is going on around you and if you choose to hide your head in the sand the current positions of the Ki Society become untenable. I suspect that the Ki Society (I mean Tohei's heirs who control it) will gradually be forced to disclose more and more of whatever information they know. However, I'll bet you dollars to doughnuts that they actually only have limited ki knowledge, compared with the whole corpus. Instead of playing word-games that pretend you're on the real track, I suggest you go outside of the Ki Society and start doing some research. I'll be glad to make some suggestions where to look.

Regards,

Mike Sigman
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Old 06-03-2005, 08:34 AM   #66
rob_liberti
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Re: A Word of Concern to all Aikidoka...

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I'll be glad to make some suggestions where to look.
Sounds good to me. Please do so.

Rob
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Old 06-03-2005, 08:40 AM   #67
aikigirl10
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Re: A Word of Concern to all Aikidoka...

Tony Sapa wrote: Do not dwell on KI as the essence of life and death..

I completely agree w/you tony. its good to see some people here who believe that life and death are in the hands of only God.
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Old 06-03-2005, 09:02 AM   #68
Stefan Stenudd
 
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Kiai and aiki

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
"qi" is an umbrella term that includes a number of "unknown forces"
Mike makes a number of valuable and interesting statements. The qi-umbrella perspective makes me think about , kiai , and , aiki.

If you allow me to simplify, I like to explain kiai as a joining of (all it stands for and other resources) within oneself, for one specific purpose - in other words, making oneself becoming optimally efficient. To think that this only involves breath-power, would be to lessen one's capacity. It incorporates all, and a focus on (however one defines it) serves as a help to make the effort all-encompassing.

Again simplifying, aiki is the same done, involving a partner. Optimizing the dynamics between tori and uke, if you like. Focusing on the (however one defines it) of oneself and of the partner, helps in making the effort all-encompassing.

Regarding and Tohei sensei, it would be terribly misleading to present him as any kind of originator of it, in any way - inside or outside aikido. I mean, it's called aido.
The term ki-aikido often used about Tohei sensei's school is bewildering to me. Is it like New York, New York - so damn big, they had to name it twice?

Stefan Stenudd
My aikido website: http://www.stenudd.com/aikido/
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Old 06-03-2005, 09:06 AM   #69
kironin
 
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Re: A Word of Concern to all Aikidoka...

Quote:
Ted Ehara wrote:
This is the source of much confusion. For a traditionalist who understands the concepts of chakra, center, hara or dan tien, K . Tohei's idea of one point seems similar to traditional teachings, but it is not. That is why Mike is talking about points of power, while Craig is talking about awareness.
I liked Ted's response so much, I didn't see much point in responding after that. After all Mike will continue arguing way past the time the cows come home and are in the barn (this is Texas).

When I was referring to "scientists", I was referring to scientists whose area of expertise would involve studying awareness. Scientists would have gotten that because they understand that they are not experts in areas outside their field even if they hold an opinion as a layman about the topic. Making an issue of that ...
well, I don't have to argue right now for the sake of arguing.

go to run...

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Old 06-03-2005, 09:14 AM   #70
Mike Sigman
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Re: Kiai and aiki

Quote:
Stefan Stenudd wrote:
The qi-umbrella perspective makes me think about , kiai , and , aiki.

If you allow me to simplify, I like to explain kiai as a joining of (all it stands for and other resources) within oneself, for one specific purpose - in other words, making oneself becoming optimally efficient.
Hi Stefan:

I agree with your definition up to the point above. A ki-ai harnesses the middle, the fascia/muscle component, vibration, etc., to accompany the kokyu and assorted other body tricks in order focus power. I.e., it is a name that refers to a specific general function, regardless of the component kanji.
Quote:
Again simplifying, aiki is the same done, involving a partner.
Personally, I'd suggest that "Aiki" refers to using your own ki/kokyu to convert an opponent's attack. In other words, just because the same two kanji appear in both words, the substantive meaning is not the same.
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Regarding and Tohei sensei, it would be terribly misleading to present him as any kind of originator of it, in any way - inside or outside aikido. I mean, it's called aido.
The term ki-aikido often used about Tohei sensei's school is bewildering to me. Is it like New York, New York - so damn big, they had to name it twice?
Well, to be fair, I think it simply refers to "Aikido with Ki emphasized".

All the Best.

Mike
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Old 06-03-2005, 09:24 AM   #71
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Re: A Word of Concern to all Aikidoka...

Quote:
Craig Hocker wrote:
I liked Ted's response so much, I didn't see much point in responding after that.
Er, where have you "responded" to anything substantively, Craig? Take a look at your posts and what you've done with most of my direct questions...it's all archived. From a discussion standpoint, you make assertions and avoid questions. Shifting the topic to me and "arguing til the cows come home", i.e., trivializing a discussion you're obviously uncomfortable with, seems a little off-topic, IMO. When I debate real "scientists", usually there is something more substantive than just assertion and trivializing. Shall we return to the topic and the unanswered questions (see post #45 and at *least* respond to the question about ki-tests and state of mind).

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Last edited by Mike Sigman : 06-03-2005 at 09:29 AM.
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Old 06-03-2005, 09:29 AM   #72
RebeccaM
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Re: A Word of Concern to all Aikidoka...

Quote:
Ted Ehara wrote:
  1. Western science can pick-up subtle electrical patterns on the human body. Yet there are no corresponding patterns in energy or chemical flow which match the traditional patterns of energy as described in Chinese meridians or Indian chakras. If these are points of power, why hasn't there been any discovery of related power patterns in Western science?
  2. If you believe that eastern power as described in chakras or meridians are a subtle energy, doesn't that lack of detection indicate it is not a substantial force in the human body?
It's been a fascinating discussion, and I'll return to lurking shortly, but please guys, let's avoid interpreting negative data. Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. There'a all sorts of reasons why ki-detection experiments have failed, and it ranges from bad detection methods to ki not existing, but there's no way to know. Science is filled with examples of things that people thought didn't exist simply because they weren't looking in the right place in the right way.

Last edited by RebeccaM : 06-03-2005 at 09:37 AM. Reason: silly spelling mistake
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Old 06-03-2005, 09:43 AM   #73
happysod
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Re: A Word of Concern to all Aikidoka...

Rebecca, have to disagree with you here. The initial assertion is that ki does exist in some tangible form so mentioning a failure of quite a standard test to correspond with current "ki etc theory" concerning energy patterns within the body is valid.

If Ted was using this as a basis for disproving the existence of ki at all, I'd agree with your point.
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Old 06-03-2005, 09:44 AM   #74
Mike Sigman
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Re: A Word of Concern to all Aikidoka...

Quote:
Rebecca Montange wrote:
Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. There'a all sort sfo reasons why ki-detection experiments have failed, and it ranges from bad detection methods to ki not existing, but there's no way to know. Science is filled with examples of things that people thought didn't exist simply because they weren't looking in the right place in the right way.
That's a good comment, Rebecca. However, the problem is really not about "measuring ki" when you understand that "ki" is a generic term that equates to "unknown forces" that would include specific things like blood sugar, electricity, momentum, paths of strength, teleportation, prescience, and so on. In other words, given all the things the term "ki" refers to in the western technology paradigm and English, it's sort of an absurdity to test for any single thing called ki. Even when you get to the specific body factors that are within the umbrella term "ki", thus greatly narrowing the component factors, you have still at least a handful of factors that you'd be trying to measure as one thing... and so it's still impossible to "measure ki". We can, though, measure those component factors individually.

FWIW

Mike
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Old 06-03-2005, 11:17 AM   #75
rob_liberti
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Re: A Word of Concern to all Aikidoka...

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teleportation
If that is not a typo, then in your list of suggestions where to look for people outside of ki society that you feel are good at ki, please highlight the teleporters. I'd like to meet them, maybe they can just pop in to see me in my office for a moment.

Seriously, how did teleportation become as aspect under the ki umbrella?

Rob
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