Aikido

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Re: Aikido

Postby Tom on Wed Dec 09, 2015 2:50 pm

Posts about Bodywork/Dan and his background have been removed to another thread, "This Is Not Aikido," in BTDT.

Folks who are obsessed with pestering Dan about his background, please use PMs to correspond with Dan and stop using this forum for your personal trolling agenda. If Ah Louis (John Pearson) or Rabbit insist on continuing the diversion and badger routine, they will be banned.

Thank you.
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Re: Aikido

Postby WVMark on Sun May 07, 2017 5:58 am

The Ueshiba Legacy – Part 2 is up at the Sangenkai website. I've expanded on the two diverging legacies.

http://www.aikidosangenkai.org/blog/ueshiba-legacy-mark-murray-part-2/

An interesting tidbit:

Ueshiba explained Hachiriki as The 8 powers are opposing forces: Movement – Stillness, Melting – Congealing, Pulling – Loosening, Combining – Splitting / 9-1, 8-2, 7-3, 6-4 (*4). These are 4 pairs of opposites. To understand just how important “opposites” are, when Henry Kono asked O-Sensei “Why can we not do what you do, Sensei?” the answer was quite simply “Because you don’t understand In and Yo.” (*5) Opposing forces. As a bit of a sidetrack, Ueshiba was an avid reader of the Chinese classics. If we look at a portion of the Chinese Martial Arts, we find that opposing forces is the foundation of many.
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Re: Aikido

Postby Ashura on Sun May 07, 2017 8:05 am

I have no interest in Aikido and its history (or may be I should say legends and tales) but I wish people researching on aikido would stop writing about Daito-ryu and giving incorrect information about the art.

With all due respect, I have read terrible statements, some of them having been repeated throughout the years ad nauseam.

This is very sad both for the art and the very few people still practicing it and who are doing their best to pass it on to the next generation.
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Re: Aikido

Postby WVMark on Sun May 07, 2017 1:35 pm

Ashura wrote:I have no interest in Aikido and its history (or may be I should say legends and tales) but I wish people researching on aikido would stop writing about Daito-ryu and giving incorrect information about the art.

With all due respect, I have read terrible statements, some of them having been repeated throughout the years ad nauseam.

This is very sad both for the art and the very few people still practicing it and who are doing their best to pass it on to the next generation.


I could say that the sky is really blue cotton candy and that clouds are angel farts. It's all just words on the screen ... until you give some sort of research to help uphold those words.
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Re: Aikido

Postby Ashura on Mon May 08, 2017 4:20 am

My message was not exclusively aiming at you. This is a huge subject which deserves a lot of research which I did throughout my years of training and traveling in Japan and elsewhere and training under most of Takeda Tokimune's oldest students.

My opinion is that people researching about Aikido and Ueshiba should delve much deeper into Daito-ryu's history and techniques which is almost never done. There are some information which I will not share but i'm willing to discuss the huge differences between Daito-ryu and aikido's techniques, principles, training methodology and, let's dare the word, philosophy.

While Ueshiba became Ueshiba thanks to Sokaku's teachings, he later made every possible effort to hide his connection with Sokaku and Daito-ryu and changed the art so much that it would be safer to completely separate both arts.

I'll get back to this later.
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Re: Aikido

Postby amor on Mon May 08, 2017 1:13 pm

Ashura wrote:
My opinion is that people researching about Aikido and Ueshiba should delve much deeper into Daito-ryu's history and techniques which is almost never done. There are some information which I will not share but i'm willing to discuss the huge differences between Daito-ryu and aikido's techniques, principles, training methodology and, let's dare the word, philosophy.



Thanks for the clarification, wouldn't mind looking at your analysis on the differences between Daito-ryu and Aiki on the techniques, philosophy, principles, training and methodlogy.
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Re: Aikido

Postby wayne hansen on Thu May 11, 2017 12:51 am

Tom wrote:Posts about Bodywork/Dan and his background have been removed to another thread, "This Is Not Aikido," in BTDT.

Folks who are obsessed with pestering Dan about his background, please use PMs to correspond with Dan and stop using this forum for your personal trolling agenda. If Ah Louis (John Pearson) or Rabbit insist on continuing the diversion and badger routine, they will be banned.

Thank you.



I missed all this but can't find the new thread
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Re: Aikido

Postby Tom on Fri May 12, 2017 10:08 am

Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterward.

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Re: Aikido

Postby Ian on Fri May 12, 2017 10:13 am

I've skipped the whole "true aikido" discussion :D but I do like standing joint locks.

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Re: Aikido

Postby Ashura on Fri May 12, 2017 3:02 pm

WVMark wrote:

Speaking of aiki, if we look to Yukiyoshi Sagawa, we find that he states aiki is a body training method and it isn't about techniques. In fact, Sagawa, Kodo, Okamoto, and Ueshiba all said their art was formless. Not some set curriculum of techniques, but formless. Then we find that Tokimune Takeda, Takuma Hisa, Kodo, Sagawa, and Ueshiba all had solo training exercises that did not get shown. Where is their focus on techniques? They did not have it.



Actually the focus on techniques is to be found everywhere in Daito-ryu, even in Sagawa-ha Daito-ryu. The late Sagawa organised his own system in ten "gen" for a total of around 2.000 techniques. Only 3 people have reached the 10th gen and most of the students were not allowed to get further than the 4th. Obviously, solo training is/was a very important aspect of the school but it was not practiced during the regular lessons since Sagawa considered, and he was right, that solo training can and should be done at home and not in the dojo. Focusing only on solo training, tanren, rentan or whatever you want to call it won´t lead you far if you do not have techniques to express those "internal body skills".

Takeda Tokimune took the pain to find a name for all of the techniques contained in his enormous syllabus (over 3.000 techniques), the Takumakai later adopted the same system with slight differences, not to talk about the famous soden, a 11 volumes collection featuring 1.500 pictures and over 540 techniques taught by both Ueshiba and Sokaku over a relatively short period of time. Volume 1 to 6 contain techniques taught by Ueshiba while volume 7 to 9 those taught by Sokaku after he took over from Ueshiba. 540 techniques are quite a number especially if you consider that the above mentioned person did not focus or did not have techniques.

I´m not familiar with the kodokai and all the schools which branched off from it like the roppokai or the muden juku, but I´m sure that they do spend some time on techniques and that there must be a curriculum.

Back to the aiki concept now, it is true that (good) solo training enhance, sometimes, dramatically, your skills but that work alone is not enough, far from it. Whatever, the level of mastery, one can achieve, you still need some kind of feedback from a training partner or from some kind of opposition. This is why techniques and kata were created. Techniques and kata are both very important and very deep.

I know that there are quite a few people out there who believe that solo training alone will take them very far and that they will develop amazing skills if they practised those various exercices daily but it is simply not true. Ueshiba did train in Daito-ryu, was taught many techniques, got somehow, something from them, and then created his own art based on Daito-ryu while reducing the number of techniques he had learnt, exactly like other deshi before and after him. Some turned out to be great martial artists and made a name for themselves, other were forgotten or kept a low profile.

By the way, the word aiki was in used in the school even before Ueshiba met with Sokaku so Deguchi has nothing to do with the alledged addition of the word, this is a very common mistake.

Once again, no one questions solo training and its value but implying that techniques, within kata, were/are of secondary importance in Daito-ryu is a huge mistake. The one does not go without the other, it is just as simple as that.


By way of an example, Horikawa famously went to Sagawa after Takeda died to get instruction in the jujutsu, as he said he'd only learned 'aiki'.. and Sagawa then lorded it over him by all accounts, despite Horikawa being the ONLY surviving student of Takeda with menkyo kaiden (license of complete transmission)

Which raises other questions.. if Horikawa was the only one to get menkyo kaiden, why did he need to go to another student to get the jujutsu waza..

But in any event, it is clear that Takeda (and Ueshiba) considered 'aiki' a separate entity in it's own right, and that the (likely) best sources of authority on it would be the Kodokai (Horikawa's org) or Sagawa folks.. the Sagawa dojo is known for being closed to foreigners, and as others have noted several times, Takeda was well known for saying 'don't teach the real aiki'


Horikawa went to Sagawa´s dojo in 1950 if I recall well, Horikawa said that Sokaku had told him that he wanted to grant him menkyo kaiden and had him prepare the díploma. Unfortunarely, Sokaku died prior meeting Horikawa again, so the menko kaiden was awarded by Tokimune, Sokaku´s son and successor. But there was two other menkyo kaiden still alive at that time, the former yokozuna Takuma Hisa and Tonedate Masao. It is useless to try to find a logic in the licences awarded by Sokaku to his students, if there ever was a system for the rankings, it was obviously pretty loose to say the least.

True, the Sagawa dojo was not an open dojo and it was not easy to get allowed but I know of two women who studied under Sagawa and eventually got their black belts from him. One of the lady even introduced her husband to Sagawa and they know run a private dojo in Europe. I know personaly several foreigners who learn from Kimura Tatsuo in Japan and abroad.

Daito-ryu is a very deep martial art but it is still a dying art that won´t probably make it to the next generation. Tokimune´s system was based in both jujutsu and aikijujutsu to put it simply, this was a very comprehensive system and even without "aiki" the stuff was good, aiki being one of the several "strategies" in use in the school. All the Tokimune´s older students in Hokkaido (mostly Abashiri and Kitami) have passed away and they could pass on their knowledge only to a handful of students, who are already old and among the younger generation, no one stands out.
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Re: Aikido

Postby WVMark on Sun May 14, 2017 10:00 am

Ashura wrote:
WVMark wrote:

Speaking of aiki, if we look to Yukiyoshi Sagawa, we find that he states aiki is a body training method and it isn't about techniques. In fact, Sagawa, Kodo, Okamoto, and Ueshiba all said their art was formless. Not some set curriculum of techniques, but formless. Then we find that Tokimune Takeda, Takuma Hisa, Kodo, Sagawa, and Ueshiba all had solo training exercises that did not get shown. Where is their focus on techniques? They did not have it.



Actually the focus on techniques is to be found everywhere in Daito-ryu, even in Sagawa-ha Daito-ryu. The late Sagawa organised his own system in ten "gen" for a total of around 2.000 techniques. Only 3 people have reached the 10th gen and most of the students were not allowed to get further than the 4th. Obviously, solo training is/was a very important aspect of the school but it was not practiced during the regular lessons since Sagawa considered, and he was right, that solo training can and should be done at home and not in the dojo. Focusing only on solo training, tanren, rentan or whatever you want to call it won´t lead you far if you do not have techniques to express those "internal body skills".

Takeda Tokimune took the pain to find a name for all of the techniques contained in his enormous syllabus (over 3.000 techniques), the Takumakai later adopted the same system with slight differences, not to talk about the famous soden, a 11 volumes collection featuring 1.500 pictures and over 540 techniques taught by both Ueshiba and Sokaku over a relatively short period of time. Volume 1 to 6 contain techniques taught by Ueshiba while volume 7 to 9 those taught by Sokaku after he took over from Ueshiba. 540 techniques are quite a number especially if you consider that the above mentioned person did not focus or did not have techniques.

I´m not familiar with the kodokai and all the schools which branched off from it like the roppokai or the muden juku, but I´m sure that they do spend some time on techniques and that there must be a curriculum.


Well, sure. For the masses. Pour the sake. Train more techniques.

But, Sagawa, Ueshiba, etc all pointed to something outside of technique as the secret of aiki.

In Transparent Power by Tatsuo Kimura: The elder Sagawa, who sometimes had a fiery temper, would take what he learned from Takeda and try it out on strong and mean-looking construction workers he came across. He quickly realized that if you lacked the sort of aiki that Sokaku Takeda possessed, none of the techniques would work against a persistent opponent. So Sagawa's father said to Takeda, "I'm already so old, I think it would be better if you'd teach me Aiki instead of techniques."

Stan Pranin talking about training and states: It's the idea of "stealing techniques with your eyes," isn't it?
Mrs. Horikawa replies, It's not with the eyes, it's with the body.


Anyone who thinks just training techniques will get them to the same place as their founders ... after 40+ years and millions of people training techniques, where are they?

Ashura wrote:Back to the aiki concept now, it is true that (good) solo training enhance, sometimes, dramatically, your skills but that work alone is not enough, far from it. Whatever, the level of mastery, one can achieve, you still need some kind of feedback from a training partner or from some kind of opposition. This is why techniques and kata were created. Techniques and kata are both very important and very deep.

I know that there are quite a few people out there who believe that solo training alone will take them very far and that they will develop amazing skills if they practised those various exercices daily but it is simply not true. Ueshiba did train in Daito-ryu, was taught many techniques, got somehow, something from them, and then created his own art based on Daito-ryu while reducing the number of techniques he had learnt, exactly like other deshi before and after him. Some turned out to be great martial artists and made a name for themselves, other were forgotten or kept a low profile.


Solo training is important. Kata, done right, is important. Aiki was the body changing method. Kata was a way to use the body in a martial environment. But, in the aiki arts, kata without aiki just doesn't work. The elder Sagawa knew it. Adjustments must be made to get kata to work without aiki. Timing becomes more important. Body placement becomes more important. Jujutsu methods become important. Cooperative training to make techniques work became important. Many of the critical components of aiki become sidelined because no one can do them. For example, Ueshiba's push tests were removed. People couldn't do them. Oh, if they used jujutsu tricks, they could make it seem like they're doing the same thing. Without the trick, they fail.

Ashura wrote:By the way, the word aiki was in used in the school even before Ueshiba met with Sokaku so Deguchi has nothing to do with the alledged addition of the word, this is a very common mistake.


It's not a mistake. If you do the research, you find that the reported series of events was that Takeda had not used aiki as part of his art's name. Deguchi suggested adding aiki to the name. Takeda agreed. There was no mention anywhere that Takeda had never used aiki prior to Deguchi. Supposedly Deguchi noticed that aiki was significant enough that it should be added to the name of Takeda's art.

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Re: Aikido

Postby Ashura on Sun May 14, 2017 12:34 pm

WVMark wrote:
Well, sure. For the masses. Pour the sake. Train more techniques.

But, Sagawa, Ueshiba, etc all pointed to something outside of technique as the secret of aiki.

In Transparent Power by Tatsuo Kimura: The elder Sagawa, who sometimes had a fiery temper, would take what he learned from Takeda and try it out on strong and mean-looking construction workers he came across. He quickly realized that if you lacked the sort of aiki that Sokaku Takeda possessed, none of the techniques would work against a persistent opponent. So Sagawa's father said to Takeda, "I'm already so old, I think it would be better if you'd teach me Aiki instead of techniques."

Stan Pranin talking about training and states: It's the idea of "stealing techniques with your eyes," isn't it?
Mrs. Horikawa replies, It's not with the eyes, it's with the body.


Anyone who thinks just training techniques will get them to the same place as their founders ... after 40+ years and millions of people training techniques, where are they?

Mark


The masses are to be found in Aikido, as you pointed out, millions of people around the world are practicing Aikido. Actually practicing might not be the right word, people are mostly mimicing ad nauseam what Ueshiba did as an old man. Aikido schools have a photocopy policy, every student is supposed to move and perform techniques exactly the same way their teacher, the head, or the founder of their style do. Innovation is nowhere to be found. Sadly, Daito-ryu is taking the same path.

There are some people around who claim to teach "aiki" or some body method similar to "aiki" with some success and some real skills but always within a determined environnement. I have never denied that working on the body would greatly enhance one´s skills. I simply want to point out to the skills shown in a dojo do not necessarily translate well in a live confrontation wether it is a competion or a street fight. Issuing power in "a different way" to put it simply from a static position and with an opponent/partner only resisting is indeed quite easy. Now, let the same opponent/partner resist actively and freely (moving, dodging, taking some initiatives) and you will quickly realize that the usual "magic" is gone and that things do not turn out the way they usually do. Why is it so?

The above metioned people with skills (some of them you mentioned in your message but there are others) where are they? I´m not talking about seminars, I´m not even talking about entering a cage or a ring but just a local Judo tournament. Why Judo? Judo people were once allegedly tossed around by the likes of Sokaku and Sagawa. Somebody possessing such body skills should easily be in a position to enter a small, local Judo tournament and win all his/her matches by ippon in a jiffy. Since a Judo player is going to grab and then to push or to pull, it should be a piece of cake to put him down. I´m not talking about Olympians, European, all Japan, or World champions, just regular, serious and dedicated Judo players. Why it is not happening? Do you have an explanation? Would not it put an end for ever to all the controversies if somebody would just say:"Listen, I have some unique body skills and I´am going to show them by winning this Judo or wrestling championship" Would not it be great? What have we seen so far? Nothing of the sort. The reason is easy to understand, as long as somebody offers a passive resistance as it this the case in Aikido and other arts, those skills work just fine and are indeed impressive but they do not work as well against somebody opposing an active resistance and more. It does not work any better than the Ju-jutsu techniques you are discarding. The "Aiki" you are talking about is just a very sophisticated trick set up by people who are clever and, obvviously, with some skills


Showing skills in dojo and applying them in a real situation are two very different things. There is a whole word a difference between them. In a real situation, what is important is the level of determination and aggressivity that one is able to externalize. The willingness not to accept to be defeated, all the rest is literature.

By the way, I have read all the books written by Kimura Tatsuo, even those which were not translated into english, and as I said in a previous message, everything should be taken with a grain of salt to say the least. For instance, Sagawa spent the last years of his life in his wheel chair and could not even stand straight. He surely did not reach his peak the evening before he passed away. As I said, I know some people training in this style and while they do have some serious skills, I doubt that those skills can be used in that very way in a live context.

Sagawa said that his father, in his notes on techniques taught by Sokaku, used to write " execute aiki", those notes were written before Ueshiba even met Sokaku, so the word was in use exactly as I said.
On the same topic, I think it was Yoshida Kotaro who pointed out to Sokaku that the Kanji Yamato-ryu, as the school was called originally, could be read as Daito-ryu. Then, may be we should credit Yoshida Kotaro, a great Bujutsuka by the way, with the finding of the name and definetly let Deguchi out of the whole story since he does not belong there.

Yokoyama Sakujiro, fighter extraordinaire once nicknamed "Oni" (demon) said "Opportunity in a fight is an instant which ceases immediately" (I hope the translation is correct). I was told the same by somebody with skills but in a slightly different way. The body method you are talking about has the potenbtial to open a window thus creating an opportunity which you immediately must capitalize on because it is not going to last and it might not come back, but you still need techniques. Body method alone, even the one not for the masses is not enough.

I know you will not agree with me on this but it does not matter. After all, this is a forum and the puropose of a forum is to have those kind of discussions and sometimes disagrements.

I want to make clear that I do believe in the body method event though I chose not to use the word aiki, IP or IF on purpose because their flavor is too strong but body method is not the ultimate solution, it is a useful tool but it must be practiced and integrted into a larger system and put to the test with people really trying to touch you when they punch or kick, to throw and submit you.

If we find the time, may be we could discuss the differences between Daito-ryu and Aikido in techniques, training and principles, I have the feeling that it could a very interesting discussion.

Sorry for the long and probably dull post. No offenses intended.
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Re: Aikido

Postby C.J.W. on Sun May 14, 2017 3:42 pm

My view on techniques vs. body method "tanren" is somewhere in the middle.

While I agree it's true that in the end a high-level practitioner should become "formless," learning techniques should still be an integral part of training -- at least for beginners. If we think about it, those famous JIMA masters of the past all went through the stage where they had to meticulously learn hundreds of techniques. And that, when coupled with the "hush-hush" body method training done behind closed doors, is what allowed them to eventually reach the point where techniques were no longer needed, and that their aiki bodies were able to respond instinctively and create techniques upon contact.

Developing an aiki body is they key to building the power that drives the techniques, and the techniques are outward expressions of an aiki body -- two sides of the same coin.

On the other hand, if you've only done body training but not techniques, you may very well end up with an aiki body that you do not know how to use in fighting. How can you expect to be able to apply a proper choke hold or an ankle lock in a fight if you haven't practiced it countless times on a compliant partner first?
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Re: Aikido

Postby WVMark on Sun May 14, 2017 7:59 pm

Ashura wrote:There are some people around who claim to teach "aiki" or some body method similar to "aiki" with some success and some real skills but always within a determined environnement. I have never denied that working on the body would greatly enhance one´s skills. I simply want to point out to the skills shown in a dojo do not necessarily translate well in a live confrontation wether it is a competion or a street fight.


Ugh. From the founders taught techniques to solo training won't make you an MMA champ to Deguchi, you're moving all over the place. All without any supported research. I've layed out two detailed documents with supporting research. The world has shown that millions of people training techniques from Modern Aikido have not reached any level of aiki abilities. I'm told it's a similar situation in Daito ryu. Twice told tale. The masses get techniques. Only a few select get the secrets. Takeda said not to teach the secrets of aiki but to a few. Sagawa, Tokimune, Horikawa all followed those footsteps. Kondo outright states it on his website. Ueshiba was the only one to break that tradition and teach the secrets to more than one or two.

That secret was Daito ryu aiki. It changed the body. Once that process was started, all those techniques started to make sense.

Ashura wrote: Issuing power in "a different way" to put it simply from a static position and with an opponent/partner only resisting is indeed quite easy. Now, let the same opponent/partner resist actively and freely (moving, dodging, taking some initiatives) and you will quickly realize that the usual "magic" is gone and that things do not turn out the way they usually do. Why is it so?


No aiki.

Ashura wrote:The above metioned people with skills (some of them you mentioned in your message but there are others) where are they? I´m not talking about seminars, I´m not even talking about entering a cage or a ring but just a local Judo tournament. Why Judo? Judo people were once allegedly tossed around by the likes of Sokaku and Sagawa. Somebody possessing such body skills should easily be in a position to enter a small, local Judo tournament and win all his/her matches by ippon in a jiffy. Since a Judo player is going to grab and then to push or to pull, it should be a piece of cake to put him down. I´m not talking about Olympians, European, all Japan, or World champions, just regular, serious and dedicated Judo players. Why it is not happening? Do you have an explanation?


Where have you been? Just because you've never seen it or experienced it, it doesn't mean it has not happened. The research is out there...

Ashura wrote:Would not it put an end for ever to all the controversies if somebody would just say:"Listen, I have some unique body skills and I´am going to show them by winning this Judo or wrestling championship" Would not it be great? What have we seen so far? Nothing of the sort. The reason is easy to understand, as long as somebody offers a passive resistance as it this the case in Aikido and other arts, those skills work just fine and are indeed impressive but they do not work as well against somebody opposing an active resistance and more. It does not work any better than the Ju-jutsu techniques you are discarding. The "Aiki" you are talking about is just a very sophisticated trick set up by people who are clever and, obvviously, with some skills


Huh, that hasn't been my experience. Nor the experiences of a lot of very talented martial artists I know and have met. And it's not what Sagawa said. Sagawa never called aiki a sophisticated trick. He said it was a body changing method. Mrs Horikawa mentioned it had to do with the body. Ueshiba talked about in/yo with Heaven/Earth/Man inside oneself. None of them said aiki was sophisticated tricks. This is the aiki I've talked about. It is the secret that made them all great.

Ashura wrote:Sagawa said that his father, in his notes on techniques taught by Sokaku, used to write " execute aiki", those notes were written before Ueshiba even met Sokaku, so the word was in use exactly as I said.

On the same topic, I think it was Yoshida Kotaro who pointed out to Sokaku that the Kanji Yamato-ryu, as the school was called originally, could be read as Daito-ryu.
Then, may be we should credit Yoshida Kotaro, a great Bujutsuka by the way, with the finding of the name and definetly let Deguchi out of the whole story since he does not belong there.


You're still not getting the point. No one doubted that Takeda used "aiki" as a description. The elder Sagawa asked to be taught "aiki" because "techniques" weren't working for him. But until Takeda stayed with Ueshiba and was around Deguchi, the art was Daito ryu. Deguchi mentioned that Takeda should add aiki in the title of his art. Daito ryu aiki jujutsu.

Ellis Amdur wrote:I don't know that this is exactly correct. Takeda lived with Ueshiba for six months, and among other things, may have taught him spear. I speculated on this in an article on AJ, and recently found some corroborating evidence. Tokimune recalls observing practice as a little boy during this time and seeing Takeda knock Ueshiba off his feet - spear against Ueshiba's juken. Rather than drama (other than the normal that Takeda brought with him), this was one of the most concentrated periods of training that Takeda ever offered anyone - six or more months, uninterrupted. If you read the bio of TAkeda, he, at various times, had one or another young man as his "star." For a long period of time, it was Ueshiba, and his staying at Ayabe was a mark of this. And just because the teacher "loved" the student didn't mean he'd be nice or praise him. In fact, Tokimune said that his father criticized Ueshiba more than anyone except him - and clearly explained that this was a mark of affection. Harshness by a teacher is a mark of the standards the teacher hopes the student will attain. (I had one teacher, very drunk, once say to me. "Ellis, I intend to give you everything I know. I shouldn't say this, but what the hell - I'm drunk. I am going to trash everything you do from now on. I am going to treat you to hell. I'm only telling you this because a Japanese guy would understand, but you are a foreigner and would probably think I only hated you." - --- and this doesn't necessarily mean that a) such behavior is not open to abuse b) a student might find it intolerable anyway). Anyway, I think people often misunderstand the reports of Takeda's harshness - he clearly cared deeply for Ueshiba, even sending others to check on his well-being in the mid-1930's when the 2nd Omotokyo Incident happened.
Anyway, apparently, it was Deguchi who suggested the name Aikiijutsu, not Ueshiba. And it certainly wasn't that Takeda saw that Ueshiba had created something new that he jumped on the band-wagon with. It was just that Deguchi came up with a name that Takeda thought reflected what he (Takeda) was doing.


Ashura wrote:Yokoyama Sakujiro, fighter extraordinaire once nicknamed "Oni" (demon) said "Opportunity in a fight is an instant which ceases immediately" (I hope the translation is correct). I was told the same by somebody with skills but in a slightly different way. The body method you are talking about has the potenbtial to open a window thus creating an opportunity which you immediately must capitalize on because it is not going to last and it might not come back, but you still need techniques. Body method alone, even the one not for the masses is not enough.

I know you will not agree with me on this but it does not matter. After all, this is a forum and the puropose of a forum is to have those kind of discussions and sometimes disagrements.


Overall, I'm not disagreeing with you. You can change the body (aiki) but you still need to train in something (kata) for it to become martial. However, in the aiki arts, just training techniques will never get you the secret of aiki.

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Re: Aikido

Postby Ashura on Mon May 15, 2017 1:07 am

WVMark wrote:
Ashura wrote:There are some people around who claim to teach "aiki" or some body method similar to "aiki" with some success and some real skills but always within a determined environnement. I have never denied that working on the body would greatly enhance one´s skills. I simply want to point out to the skills shown in a dojo do not necessarily translate well in a live confrontation wether it is a competion or a street fight.


Ugh. From the founders taught techniques to solo training won't make you an MMA champ to Deguchi, you're moving all over the place. All without any supported research. I've layed out two detailed documents with supporting research. The world has shown that millions of people training techniques from Modern Aikido have not reached any level of aiki abilities. I'm told it's a similar situation in Daito ryu. Twice told tale. The masses get techniques. Only a few select get the secrets. Takeda said not to teach the secrets of aiki but to a few. Sagawa, Tokimune, Horikawa all followed those footsteps. Kondo outright states it on his website. Ueshiba was the only one to break that tradition and teach the secrets to more than one or two.

That secret was Daito ryu aiki. It changed the body. Once that process was started, all those techniques started to make sense.




All without any supported research. Well, thank you for that one. Don´t worry, supported research are on their way.

Just to make things clearer: are you talking about the secrets or THE secret? Because it is indeed very different. Mr Kondo, whom you cite and quote, seems to talk about secrets. Would you say that Mr Kondo possesses aiki? You do not seriously believe that the quote on Mr Kondo´s web site is accurate and reliable?

There are a lot of information in your post which are not clear. You said: Takeda said not to teach the secrets of aiki but to a few. All right, when did he say that and to whom? I thought that aiki was a body method, a way to train the body in order to change it from within, how many secrets are to be taught?

I think you are confusing a lot of things. Aiki or whatever the name is a body method which is developed in a certain way throught specific solo and paired exercices. Secrets are more like Heiho (strategies) and it is true that there are quite a lot of "secrets" (some would call them practical experience and good sense) within Heiho. Tokimune got a lot of them directly from his father and compiled them in what is called the "Tokimune notes". Those notes cover of lot of different fields from the martial arts to the Mikkyo.

If Sokaku only taught the secrets of aiki to one or two, who are they in your opinion? Sagawa makes it clear in transparent power that he was not the choosen one but that he could grasp aiki nevertheless further adding that he and only he really got it as opposed to all the other imitators and that he even surpassed Sokaku in his mastery of skills. The imitators in question would be among others: Ueshiba Morihei, Takeda Tokimune, Yoshida Kotaro, Horikawa father and son, Hisa Takuma, Matsuda Toshimi and so on. Who was the lucky on? How did all those people eventually get skilled? Were they skilled by the way? What does it mean to you? Please specify.


The people below were all awarded Kyoju dairi from Sokaku from 1902 to 1941.

Sato Kanmi
Shimoe Shutaro
Harada Shinzo
Mikami Tomiji
Sagawa Nenokichi
Yoshida Kotaro
Ueshiba Morihei
Asano Seikyo
Sagawa Yukiyoshi
Matsuda Hosaku
Miyano Hikojiro
Mae Kikutaro
Horikawa Taiso
Sato Seishiro
Sato Keisuke
Hisa Takuma
Yoshimura Yoshiteru
Yokoyama Eijiro
Nakatsu Heizaburo
Akune Masayoshi
Kawazoe Kuniyoshi
Takahashi Jun'ichi
Kusumoto Koichiro
Tonedate Masao
Harada Jozaburo
Togawa Tadae
Uchida Suematsu
Tei Kaichi
Yamamoto Kakuyoshi



As you can see, there are some big names in this list, more than one or two as you imply it. By the way, in order to get this licence, knowledge and, I assume, mastery of the following techniques was required: Shoden (today called Hiden) Mokuroku consisting of 118 omote techniques + an unspecified number of ura waza, aiki no jutsu, Hiden Ogi and Goshin´yo no Te, all catalogues with omote and ura waza.

So secret (Body method) or secrets (within the rechniques, strategies, suggestions) or a combination of the two? Body method and techniques? I think that you do not have a clear picture of those aspects which is not surprising since you are obviously not familiar with Daito-ryu teaching methodology. Supported research is fine but time spent on the mat with the right people in the right places is even better.

Aiki is refined body mechanics. Sagawa, whom you mention all the time said: "you render your opponent powerless through an internal action that is not visible on the outside". The internal action should work with a completely relaxed body and a strong lower body fondation (mostly strong hips and legs). Solo training is meant to train and master the internal action not visible on the outside and the strong fondation. Some exercices are very famous and the japanese magazine hiden did publish several articles with detailed explanations about them in the past.

Once again, I´m not denying the value of those body changing methods nor that they will not enhance dramatically one´s skills. I have never said that, like I never said that you could get aiki from techniques only. Here again, there might be a semantic confusion between technique and form. May be, you are refering to people working on the form only, thus learning choregraphies while techniques are much deeper than that.


Even Sagawa thought that techniques were of value:

You students don´t realize that that there can be many different ways to apply the techniques you already know. You limit yourselves to the what you have been shown. If you only become aware of the different applications for the first time when I point them out, it proves that you have not been thinking.



Back in the past, things like karate and boxing did not exist, so even in Daito-ryu there were no techniques specifically to fight those forms. Today, you must find ways to counter the moves of these and other martial arts. It is commendable to preserve what´s good about the old ways, you must, however, discard what is ineffective and developp your own techniques. Otherwise, there is no evolution, no progress.


Whenever a technique does not work right, I´ll lie awake at night trying to figure it out. But you students don´t give it so much thought, do you? You don´t try to find out why it did not work. If you spend time thinking, you will discover ideas on your own. I can teach you the form but I can´t teach all the little details. You must discover those through your own effort.


I was frustrated when a technique did not work. I would stay up all night solving the problem. I could not sleep because i was so motivated to find the answer. How could you ever become good at this art if you become accustomed to your techniques not working?


When I could not beat someone, I would not sleep until I could figure out what to do. But today´s students immediately stop thinking about why they lost.



You will fail if you think that what you have got is good enough and refuse to study other arts. You will become the frog in a well. I can´t tell you bhow much sumo and boxing I studied. Among other things, I set ou to discover their moves, develop effective counter moves, and figure out how to improve these techniques.


As you see, even for Sagawa it was not all about the body, research on techniques was an important part of his training regimen.

A lot of people do not realize that it took these men decades of hard and dedicated work even after they were told „the secret“. When we talk about Sokaku, Ueshiba or Sagawa, we are talking about the accomplished martial artists but not about their journey into the martial arts and their evolution throughout the years.

Sagawa claimed to have understood aiki whern he was 17 and to have reached his peak when he got 70 years old. This evolution took place over 5 decades of hard work. As you might know, Sagawa was very wealthy and did not need to work to make a living so he could train without having to worry for financial issues. This makes a huge difference. How many hours a day can we dedicate today in our „modern society“? Here lies the biggest problem in my opinion. There are skilled people, even extremely skilled people, some might call them geniuses but we should stop believing that they are all mighty and invicible and that they can apply their skills at will without effort or struggle.
See where there is no shape, hear where there is no sound.

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