The article below 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.
[I]n one sense the Aikikai is a very successful martial arts organization, for both inside and outside Japan the art, as inherited by Doshu and developed and interpreted by him, is growing. On the other hand, the disciples of the founder went off to create their own dojos and these also developed into fully-fledged organizations. Thus the aikido world split into competing groups even during the founder’s lifetime, the fragmentation of aikido happened in Japan, the “mother” country, and not only abroad. So, in another sense the Aikikai has not been successful in its aim of maintaining unity in aikido and the question whether such unity is possible is a valid question which needs to be asked.