Aug
31

Brian Kagen pick: “Olympics Reveal East-West Divide” by Jeffrey Sonnenfeld

From Forbes.com:

“In 1889, seven years before the founding of the modern international Olympics, the British author Rudyard Kipling intoned: ‘Oh, East is East, and West is West, and never the twain shall meet/’Till Earth and Sky stand present at God’s great Judgment Seat.’”

Brian Kagen is an avid web researcher with a particular interest in martial arts. His training background includes both judo and aikido. He has contributed hundreds of article links over the years for AJ readers.

Click here to read entire article.

Aug
31

Recommended reading: “Morihei Ueshiba and Kenji Tomiki” by Stanley Pranin

The article below dealing with the relationship between Aikido Founder Morihei Ueshiba and Kenji Tomiki Sensei has been selected from the extensive archives of the Online Aikido Journal. We believe that an informed readership with knowledge of the history, techniques and philosophy of aikido is essential to the growth of the art and its adherence to the principles espoused by Aikido Founder Morihei Ueshiba.

Among the many distinguished disciples of Morihei Ueshiba, the founder of aikido, Kenji Tomiki stands out for his intellectual stature and skill in articulating the historical and ethical rationale of the art. Whereas the founder viewed life and, consequently, his budo, mainly in religious terms, Professor Tomiki espoused a view of aikido which included competition and placed it within the larger context of the history of Japanese martial arts. An academician as well as an athlete, Tomiki authored several books and formulated a theoretical basis for aikido that was understandable by the average person. In this article we will briefly touch upon Professor Tomiki’s background, his relationship with Jigoro Kano and Morihei Ueshiba, and his contributions to present-day aikido.

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Aug
29

“Aiki Budo” featuring Morihei Ueshiba on DVD

Among the numerous video titles in our product catalog is a DVD titled “Aiki Budo” featuring Aikido Founder Morihei Ueshiba. This exciting DVD showcases the prewar Aiki Budo of Morihei and begins with a new 45-minute documentary written and produced by Aikido Journal Editor-in-chief Stanley Pranin that traces the life of the Founder from his boyhood in Tanabe through his retirement to Iwama in 1942. Morihei’s early martial arts training, his study of Daito-ryu aikijujutsu under the famous Sokaku Takeda, his involvement with the Omoto religious sect led by Onisaburo Deguchi, and a history of Ueshiba’s Kobukan Dojo are presented.

This documentary also includes fascinating video and audio recordings of several prewar Aikido figures commenting on their remembrances of the Aikido Founder. Among those who appear are Kisshomaru Ueshiba, Gozo Shioda, Rinjiro Shirata, Takako Kunigoshi, and Kiyoshi Nakakura.
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Aug
29

From AJ Forums: “Why is it that uke starts attacking in front of nage”

The following post by John Driscoll is excerpted from a thread currently in progress in the Aikido Journal forums titled “Ushiro waza”:

Why is it that uke starts attacking in front of nage when uke’s intention is to grab from behind?

“I would argue that starting from a static position with uke behind tori (shite) is the simplest way to teach ushiro waza, not having someone deal with the complexities of closing maai, trapping hands, etc.
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Aug
29

Intent To Harm

I just read Cooperation During Demonstrations by Stan Pranin and the attached comments.

This is an interesting conundrum in which all manner of instant experts abound. I’ve heard this discussion and criticisms most of my life. Coming from non-practitioners of Aiki arts such arguments hold no water because they don’t see what’s going on.

Yes indeedy sir, the uke were cooperating with the old guy because he would up the ante if they did not! And that means serious pain if not injury.

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Aug
29

Back Issues + DVD + “Aikido Masters!”

We have had many new subscribers since we launched our offer of the free back issue DVD for those subscribing or renewing their subscriptions to the Online Aikido Journal for two years.

Many of you know that this incredible DVD includes 26 years of Aiki News / Aikido Journal, more than 4,300 pages in PDF format to be read on your computer. However, this information-packed DVD also includes several bonuses. Among them is a 4-hour lecture by Stanley Pranin on the history of aikido in mp3 format. This detailed lecture will give you many new perspectives on the life of Aikido Founder Morihei Ueshiba not found in any book.

Here is a 15-minute sample from the lecture.

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