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Old 07-12-2005, 08:05 PM   #176
rob_liberti
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Well, the shodo (or shuji ? anyone know the difference? is there one?) question is a good one. I would like to think that have good kokyu in your movement would allow you optimal control to execute the fine details AS WELL AS learning to execute the fine details while doing shodo would help you develop kokyu. But I really don't know. It does go back to my initial quesiton about it in that does anyone know how these masters who can perform the brush trick develop kokyu in shodo? I mean, I doubt they are doing a lot of standing practice, etc...

Anyway, with aikido, you don't have a piece of paper, you have an entire other person who is hopfully giving you better feedback. I always thought it was interesting that the primitatives (inuri, tai-atari, and kokyu) were not presented as the required elements but rather as two primitives (inuri, and tai-atari) and one combination - musubi meaning to tie together, being composed of of two primitives (tai-atari and kokyu). Is this combination an aggregate or a composite? I don't know. I assume it is grouped like that for a reason with some depth to it. Without much thought, it seems that those elements require at least a second body for there to even be aikido. (Or the people translating were terrible at object-oriented design!)

Rob
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Old 07-12-2005, 08:11 PM   #177
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Quote:
Peter Rehse wrote:
Not particularly avoiding Ueshiba M.'s demonstrations or putting down Tohei. In both cases the ability to do these "Ki performances" had very little to do with their ability to do good Aikido.
Frankly, I'm at a complete loss at how you could justify that statement. You think that kokyu demonstrations have little to do with Aikido? I would say unequivocably that kokyu demonstrations have almost everything to do Aikido.
Quote:
Both men did them on occasion - there is even one story of Tomiki demonstrating one of them to show it was no big deal.
When? Where? Photos? Films? I at least refer to demo's that are recorded on film, photos, etc.
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And Tomiki, his history speaks for itself. Joined Ueshiba M. in 1925 and was his first 8th Dan in 1942. Far senior to either Chiba and Tohei and one could argue that his exposure to Ueshiba M. exceeded both men but definitely Chiba. At his main dojo you practice Aikido not a combination of Judo and Aikido.
?? Tohei was a 10th dan. If you mean that Tomiki studied before Tohei, you're correct. "Senior" only if you're going by who studied first, though. Are you saying that Tomiki Aikido does not combining judo and Aikido, BTW? Perhaps I was under the wrong impression. Tomiki did not modify the Aikido of O-Sensei?

Regards,

Mike

Last edited by Mike Sigman : 07-12-2005 at 08:14 PM.
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Old 07-12-2005, 08:19 PM   #178
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Quote:
Rob Liberti wrote:
does anyone know how these masters who can perform the brush trick develop kokyu in shodo? I mean, I doubt they are doing a lot of standing practice, etc...
You practice by moving with kokyu. Of course, it helps to have someone show you how to do that. Why would you doubt that they do standing? On what basis? I don't know or have a feeling either way.. but standing meditation is part of a number of meditation trainings.
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Anyway, with aikido, you don't have a piece of paper, you have an entire other person who is hopfully giving you better feedback. (snip)
Do you think that it requires two people, one giving feedback, in order to develop kokyu powers???

Mike
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Old 07-12-2005, 08:32 PM   #179
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Well I think it is a reasonable guess based on the simple basis that my doubt comes from the fact that I have seen plenty of shuji classes and everyone was sitting down. They didn't have the warm up exercises we do in aikido either! I didn't state it as a fact like I'm an expert. It would be nice to have some expert chime in on this one.

About thinking that it "requires two people, one giving feedback, in order to develop kokyu powers" - my mind isn't made up but those elements of aikido seem to imply how it should be practiced.

Rob
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Old 07-12-2005, 08:47 PM   #180
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Mike;

The story is here. http://homepage2.nifty.com/shodokan/en/oshie3.html Not everyone seeks a camera.

I also wouldn't get wrapped up between 8th and 10th Dans. Don't have the time to go looking for it (I think its on Aikido Journal) but Tohei's own description of the promotions talks about the political nature. At the time (oh and Tomiki was in on the celebrations) Tomiki wasn't involved that much at the Aikikai Honbu anymore - he actually declined the position Tohei accepted.

According to Shodokan Dogma the techniques we learn are what Tomiki learnt from Ueshiba M. There is no talk of altering them. Every technique I have seen there I have seen in Aikikai dojos. Training methods are definately different but it is Aikido.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 07-12-2005, 08:48 PM   #181
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Quote:
Rob Liberti wrote:
Well I think it is a reasonable guess based on the simple basis that my doubt comes from the fact that I have seen plenty of shuji classes and everyone was sitting down.
I have seen plenty of Aikido classes, but only through this forum did I get a number of responses (some private) indicating that a lot more "standing" was done in Aikido than I ever thought. Like I said, I don't know about calligraphy classes and only have a superficial knowledge of what goes on in really good calligraphy practice.
Quote:
About thinking that it "requires two people, one giving feedback, in order to develop kokyu powers" - my mind isn't made up but those elements of aikido seem to imply how it should be practiced.
Does it require a partner to do Misogi exercises? I don't think so. Does Fune Kogi Undo require a partner? I think you can develop kokyu with or without partners and having a partner has little to do with kokyu specifically.

Mike
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Old 07-12-2005, 09:03 PM   #182
Mike Sigman
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Quote:
Peter Rehse wrote:
The story is here. http://homepage2.nifty.com/shodokan/en/oshie3.html Not everyone seeks a camera.
I realize not everyone "seeks a camera", but it's very difficult to tell from anecdotes told by loyalists. Maybe, maybe not, Peter. I can't make any judicious comments based on that story, unfortunately.
Quote:
According to Shodokan Dogma the techniques we learn are what Tomiki learnt from Ueshiba M. There is no talk of altering them. Every technique I have seen there I have seen in Aikikai dojos. Training methods are definately different but it is Aikido.
I don't want to get into a styles war. You see no value in kokyu, apparently, or kokyu demonstrations. What little I've seen of Tomiki-style Aikido looked different from most of the other Aikido I've seen, although you're indicating they're the same thing. I guess we'll just have to disagree until we can meet sometime.

Regards,

Mike Sigman
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Old 07-12-2005, 09:19 PM   #183
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
My point is that we're not talking about "crowd pleasers"... we're talking about a set of skills that add substantively to someone's power in martial arts. And we're not even discussing the complete spectrum contained in these skills.

As I originally indicated, if someone really has appreciable kokyu power, they should be able to demonstrate the "parlor trick" varieties without any great difficulty. Using the same powers within your Aikido is, of course, the next step up. What's interesting is to see these very widespread and common powers and demonstrations within many Asian martial arts being dismissed as "crowd pleasers" and "parlour tricks". There's more to it. Just because some people have made "ki" into some sort of "woo woo" topic shouldn't stop anyone from looking around their wrong perspective and taking a look at why so many generations of martial artists in Asia have considered "ki" things so important.
Hi Mike,

Your point is good and its fairly obvious that you have much more experience in the study of what is "ki" and what isn't "ki" than I do.

My understanding of the "ki demonstrations" that I have seen is that they look fairly difficult and make people go "wow" but are really not that difficult. I mean, I can do nikajo on one leg and have people pick me up and then sink so they can't hold me any more and I can be pretty unmovable...

What I can't do is move like Chida Sensei or Inoue Sensei or Ando Sensei. As you stated...that might be considered the next step...how to bring this "ki power" into your Aikido.

Since I can do some of these things I am looking for something more when I watch a demonstration of Aikido. And I think that both Peter and I are taking the position that when we see a "ki demonstration" and a dynamic, flowing "Aikido Demonstration" then we get more out of the latter than the former and a better idea of someone's ability.

That all being said...I also think you are right in that there is too much "woo-woo" wrapped up in this KI word and that there must be something in it somewhere. Which is why I would go to the workshop (aka...that other thread) if I was in a position to do so. I would like to know what should be and should not be put under the "Ki Category". Besides, anything that can help my Aikido is well worth looking at and can't be all bad

cheers,

--Michael

Hiriki no yosei 3 - The kihon that makes your head ache instead of your legs
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Old 07-12-2005, 09:24 PM   #184
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
Does it require a partner to do Misogi exercises? I don't think so. Does Fune Kogi Undo require a partner? I think you can develop kokyu with or without partners and having a partner has little to do with kokyu specifically.

Mike
Another good point. My take is that you need to both go solo and work with a partner to get to the bottom of it. Then, you don't really need a partner to 'keep' it, and if determined, to 'develop' it. That is what I have found. At least - it better be as since coming to Korea ten years ago most of my useful training has been in the mornings by myself. I have found I can now test kokyu stuff out by myself then go to class and make it work. Not perfect, but I feel I have a track ...

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Old 07-12-2005, 09:34 PM   #185
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
You see no value in kokyu, apparently, or kokyu demonstrations.
I never said either. I did say that that the ability to do a "Ki demonstration" has far less impact on how I perceive someones Aikido level as their ability to move.

On another note how can a picture show "breath power" when even film would have difficulty. There are a number of moments within, for example, Tomiki's Koryu Goshin no Kata where if you took isolated pictures you could say I was demonstrating Kokyu with as much certainty as many of the pictures of Ueshiba M.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 07-12-2005, 10:57 PM   #186
Mike Sigman
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Quote:
Michael Stuempel wrote:
My understanding of the "ki demonstrations" that I have seen is that they look fairly difficult and make people go "wow" but are really not that difficult. I mean, I can do nikajo on one leg and have people pick me up and then sink so they can't hold me any more and I can be pretty unmovable...
Hi Michael:

I more or less agree with you. The reason I don't say "yeah!" is because of the "gradations" thing I was talking about where I've been stung once too many times by finding out that what sounds the same can sometimes include variations that make me feel like I did a disservice by agreeing too much.

If you can do those things and gradually decrease any muscle that you're using, you're certainly doing some of what is "kokyu power" (problem is that it can contain several elements). Analysing it, refining it a lot, expanding it, learning to do it moving, etc., takes a long time, but I'd generally say that if someone *really* knows how to move with this sort of power, they can do most of the "ki tests" pretty easily. There's a caveat in that statement that has to do with standing exercises, but it's an aside.
Quote:
Since I can do some of these things I am looking for something more when I watch a demonstration of Aikido. And I think that both Peter and I are taking the position that when we see a "ki demonstration" and a dynamic, flowing "Aikido Demonstration" then we get more out of the latter than the former and a better idea of someone's ability.
I don't disagree with you about dynamic movement, it's just that I tend to avoid subjective judgements unless we're together and see the same things and then categorize. All I was offering was my opinion that if someone really has serious kokyu power, they wouldn't have any real difficulty with the basic kokyu demonstrations of Tohei (I caveat on a couple of his demonstrations because they can be duplicated by things other than pure ki, IMO).
Quote:
That all being said...I also think you are right in that there is too much "woo-woo" wrapped up in this KI word and that there must be something in it somewhere. Which is why I would go to the workshop (aka...that other thread) if I was in a position to do so. I would like to know what should be and should not be put under the "Ki Category".
It's all interesting stuff and, as I've been reminded a few times by some pretty big dogs, "It's very deep". Anyway, I appreciate your comments. I learn and I'm forced to think a lot in these conversations, so it's helpful for me.

Regards,

Mike
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Old 07-12-2005, 11:05 PM   #187
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Quote:
Peter Rehse wrote:
I never said either. I did say that that the ability to do a "Ki demonstration" has far less impact on how I perceive someones Aikido level as their ability to move.
My impression was that you discounted "ki tricks" until I pointed out that they were kokyu demonstrations. Extrapolating from that there is an immediate question of what you perceive in "ability to move" and what I see in "kokyu movement". That was the genesis of my comment.
Quote:
On another note how can a picture show "breath power" when even film would have difficulty. There are a number of moments within, for example, Tomiki's Koryu Goshin no Kata where if you took isolated pictures you could say I was demonstrating Kokyu with as much certainty as many of the pictures of Ueshiba M.
It's impossible to tell in all pictures, of course. However I have a reasonable chance of getting an idea with a still picture because so many of the kokyu demonstrations Asia-wide are the same. With a film I have an even better chance because I can see the movement, judge the reaction of the uke, etc.... but I'm not claiming 100%, of course.

Regards,

Mike
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Old 07-12-2005, 11:11 PM   #188
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

I still discount Ki tricks.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 07-12-2005, 11:14 PM   #189
Mike Sigman
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Quote:
Peter Rehse wrote:
I still discount Ki tricks.
Then I'll try to never show you any. It's all the same thing, Peter.

Mike
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Old 07-13-2005, 01:51 AM   #190
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Quote:
Peter Rehse wrote:
I still discount Ki tricks.
What about coin tricks? or maybe card tricks?

Death defying escapes?

Hiriki no yosei 3 - The kihon that makes your head ache instead of your legs
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Old 07-13-2005, 02:10 AM   #191
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Quote:
Michael Stuempel wrote:
What about coin tricks? or maybe card tricks?

Death defying escapes?
Hey I'm a Houdini fan - the man was a God. And anything that requires finger dexterity (I have none) I hold in awe.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 07-13-2005, 02:34 AM   #192
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Quote:
Michael Stuempel wrote:
What about coin tricks? or maybe card tricks?

Death defying escapes?
I once saw a man driving a cow with a stick and suddenly he turned the cow into a pasture.

And then there was the time I saw a house fly.....
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Old 07-13-2005, 03:27 AM   #193
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Anyway - Happy Birthday Mike.

http://www.judoinfo.com/images/video...chimasters.mov

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 07-13-2005, 08:17 AM   #194
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

priceless...

Ron

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Old 07-13-2005, 08:35 AM   #195
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Quote:
Peter Rehse wrote:
And just when I thought there was no one else left on the planet who would send me that clip, which has been around for years.

Mike
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Old 07-13-2005, 11:15 AM   #196
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

My take is that you need to both go solo and work with a partner to get to the bottom of it too. We don't just do rowing exercise all class for a reason. Should more attention be placed on gaining deeper insight into those warm-up exercises, of course - just like everything else typically practiced with a partner. I'm not sure what is broken, as opposed to just discussing what we might want to be highlighting, and maybe determining level appropriateness.

Rob
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Old 07-13-2005, 02:38 PM   #197
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Quote:
Peter Rehse wrote:
I still discount Ki tricks.
Then you're in good company, including those who can do these ki demonstrations. The analogy is like the Zen imagery of the finger pointing to the moon.

These ki demonstrations are like the finger. It is suppose to be a guide, not the focus of your awareness. The condition of mind and body coordination is the moon. The unity of mind and body is a goal in the martial arts.

We cannot see the mind. It has no shape, color or appearance. We can see the body. It has mass, form and color. So through the way the body acts, we can see a reflection of the practitioner's mind. That is what these demonstrations really show.

It is not practice that makes perfect, it is correct practice that makes perfect.
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Old 07-13-2005, 02:51 PM   #198
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Quote:
Ted Ehara wrote:
Then you're in good company, including those who can do these ki demonstrations. The analogy is like the Zen imagery of the finger pointing to the moon.

These ki demonstrations are like the finger. It is suppose to be a guide, not the focus of your awareness. The condition of mind and body coordination is the moon. The unity of mind and body is a goal in the martial arts.

We cannot see the mind. It has no shape, color or appearance. We can see the body. It has mass, form and color. So through the way the body acts, we can see a reflection of the practitioner's mind. That is what these demonstrations really show.
You cannot see the mind when someone is laying bricks or driving a car, either... and the mind and body are coordinated in these things, too. Ki demonstrations are the mind and body coordinated in ways the body does not naturally coordinate ("these skills are not intuitive; they must be learned"). I have seen these sorts of demonstrations for many years; they are done because someone wants to show that he can do them. Granted, there's not a lot of information out there (which is deliberate), but these things are not THAT hard to do and they don't have to be put on a pedestal or dragged out for years and years. They just have to be practiced.

Mike
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Old 07-13-2005, 06:46 PM   #199
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
You cannot see the mind when someone is laying bricks or driving a car, either... and the mind and body are coordinated in these things, too. Ki demonstrations are the mind and body coordinated in ways the body does not naturally coordinate ("these skills are not intuitive; they must be learned"). I have seen these sorts of demonstrations for many years; they are done because someone wants to show that he can do them. Granted, there's not a lot of information out there (which is deliberate), but these things are not THAT hard to do and they don't have to be put on a pedestal or dragged out for years and years. They just have to be practiced.

Mike
Of course you can see someone's mind and body coordination in everyday life. That is the real test of a person's mind and body unity. A person's mind is expressed through the body. All you need is a good observer to see it.

I do agree that these ki demonstrations and ki testing have to be practiced. You can't give someone a ki test cold and expect them to pass. I think that was one of the reasons why the zen priests didn't pass Tohei's ki testing.

It is not practice that makes perfect, it is correct practice that makes perfect.
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Old 07-13-2005, 06:56 PM   #200
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Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido

Quote:
Ted Ehara wrote:
I do agree that these ki demonstrations and ki testing have to be practiced. You can't give someone a ki test cold and expect them to pass. I think that was one of the reasons why the zen priests didn't pass Tohei's ki testing.
Ah. Remember that in some of my posts a couple of months ago I said that although they are sort of intertwined, kokyu can be separable as a topic from ki? I have seen some really powerful qigong experts that couldn't do the ki tests of show any real jin/kokyu. Of course, I don't know why "zen priests" would be expected to be particularly proficient at ki things, but I wouldn't assume that they could demonstrate kokyu. (I *vaguely* remember seeing a picture of Tohei with some "zen priests" but I forget the story, if you'll remind me or point me to it). What I said was that if an Aikido practitioner is claiming to be proficient at kokyunage, that means they can manifest kokyu, which means they should be able to do "ki tests".


FWIW

Mike
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