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Old 09-21-2006, 12:00 PM   #1
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Article: I Shouldn't Have to Do This by Ross Robertson

Discuss the article, "I Shouldn't Have to Do This" by Ross Robertson here.

Article URL: http://www.aikiweb.com/columns/rrobertson/2006_09.html
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Old 09-21-2006, 05:36 PM   #2
SteveTrinkle
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Re: Article: I Shouldn't Have to Do This by Ross Robertson

I think this is very well put and exceedingly important.
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Old 09-22-2006, 09:10 AM   #3
dps
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Re: Article: I Shouldn't Have to Do This by Ross Robertson

Meaning absolutely no disrespect for the memory of Kobayashi Sensei, there is a question I have.

"I'm pretty sure all he wanted was some company on a pleasant evening, and to offer a chance for people to get together for a bit of community."

Did the students feel that Kobayashi Sensei was unapproachable "off the mat" on a personal level?
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Old 09-22-2006, 09:37 AM   #4
Ron Tisdale
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Re: Article: I Shouldn't Have to Do This by Ross Robertson

Good article.

Best,
Ron

Ron Tisdale
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"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
St. Bonaventure (ca. 1221-1274)
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Old 09-22-2006, 10:22 AM   #5
gdandscompserv
 
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Re: Article: I Shouldn't Have to Do This by Ross Robertson

I remember a weekend aikido retreat on Tokashiki island. We were at the community center dojo and had been training for a little while when sensei began to look thoughtful and then started running out the door and up the road. We all looked at one another as we didn't quite know how to react, but we started running after him. We ran and ran and ran. I don't know how far we ran or for how long but I remember it was further than I would have done had he not been leading us. I thought he would never stop. Sensei finally did stop and waited for all of his students to catch up. Some of them had to walk the final distance but we all made it. Sensei, had just run all of us into the ground. We were exhausted, though it didn't seem to have much effect on him. After everybody arrived at the 'finish line,' sensei led us on a relaxed walk back to the dojo. I'll never forget that.
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Old 09-22-2006, 10:30 AM   #6
James Davis
 
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Re: Article: I Shouldn't Have to Do This by Ross Robertson

Nice article. I think that the more one trains with their sensei, and the closer their relationship becomes, the more attentive the student will be to sensei's needs. My sensei seldom makes offhanded comments about something that he'd like to happen; if I'm within earshot, I consider it a request due to the length of time we've practiced together. I think that the writer of this article probably came to realize just how much his sensei relied on him for more than a few things.

"The only difference between Congress and drunken sailors is that drunken sailors spend their own money." -Tom Feeney, representative from Florida
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Old 09-22-2006, 12:08 PM   #7
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Re: Article: I Shouldn't Have to Do This by Ross Robertson

Quote:
David Skaggs wrote:
Did the students feel that Kobayashi Sensei was unapproachable "off the mat" on a personal level?
While I never had the honor of training directly with Kobayashi Sensei, my Sensei and senior sempai trained under him. From everything they've told me ,and from what I've seen on video, Kobayashi Sensei seemed very personable and approachable.

Great article Ross Sensei. Hope everyone is well down there. I always enjoy reading your thoughts.

Best,

Bronson

"A pacifist is not really a pacifist if he is unable to make a choice between violence and non-violence. A true pacifist is able to kill or maim in the blink of an eye, but at the moment of impending destruction of the enemy he chooses non-violence."
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Old 09-28-2006, 06:27 PM   #8
R.A. Robertson
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Re: Article: I Shouldn't Have to Do This by Ross Robertson

Quote:
David Skaggs wrote:
Meaning absolutely no disrespect for the memory of Kobayashi Sensei, there is a question I have.
[\]
Did the students feel that Kobayashi Sensei was unapproachable "off the mat" on a personal level?
Hi David,

A very perceptive question on your part, and diplomatically put. Sensei Kobayashi, by the time this episode occurred, was a very congenial and approachable guy.

Now, more than a decade earlier, I used to be rather in awe of him and a bit intimidated. Not afraid, mind you, just... well, in awe. Back then he was very serious and somewhat removed. Introverted and private when not on the mat. Over the years he seemed to realize this, and set about changing himself. He believed aikido should bring people together, and that good self defense was putting people around you at ease.

So, we had the privilege of watching a great man grow. He worked hard, not just on his art, but on himself as a human being. This impressed the hell out of me, especially considering that he was humble and pretty darn impeccable to begin with.

But over the years I got over my own reticence, and I saw him lighten up also. He even laughed at my jokes now and then. On rare times that I saw him, he would ask how things were with me, and he'd talk about family and business and anything else that mattered.

I'm not sure the exact dates when the things I wrote about in the article happened, but it wasn't too long before he died. It really took us all by surprise, because he'd seemed so vital and forward looking right to the end.

Anyway, I'm rambling. I remember his laughter. I remember that he encouraged everyone to try, and to be generous and share what we knew, regardless of rank. He was never after power or intimidation. He just wanted to make the world better, and he believed in the power of aikido to heal.

His personal training was to lead people to relax, and to help them find their balance rather than take it away from them.

From my perspective, he was a great success.

Thanks for asking,

Ross
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Old 09-28-2006, 06:32 PM   #9
R.A. Robertson
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Re: Article: I Shouldn't Have to Do This by Ross Robertson

[\] Great article Ross Sensei. Hope everyone is well down there. I always enjoy reading your thoughts.

Hey Bronson!

How are things? You guys ever going to have me back up there any time soon? [wink]

Please give my love to Mark and Janean, and all the others. I miss you guys!

Be well,

Ross
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