Recommended reading: “In My Own Way: Early days as an uchideshi in the Yoshinkan” by David Lynch

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.

Taking a line through my various sensei, it is impossible to avoid major contradictions in the philosophical bases upon which their different organizations have been built, in the training systems, and even in the aikido techniques themselves. Human life is a complex thing and differences between people can be vast, so perhaps it would be strange for different teachers and organizations not to develop different approaches. What I found difficult initially, though, was the fact that many of the sensei and their followers would insist that their system was right and the others were wrong. I admit I was quite demoralized at first when, shifting from one dojo to another, I was told that what I had been doing in the previous dojo was entirely wrong.

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  1. George Frazier sensei once said, “O Sensei was like the ocean. Everybody brought his cup. If you want to have an idea of O Sensei, you have to look in all the cups.” You probably won’t make a lot of friends or get much promotion that way, though.

  2. Fr Douglas Skoyles SSC says:

    This article show again David Lynch sensei’s unique Aikido life. I have several times asked him to get to work and write a book. Sadly, he has ignored my suggestions – so far. I now make this appeal public:
    David, *please* write a book of your Aikido experiences and insights! Before you are hit by a car, become senile or are eaten by a kiwi, tuatara, moa, or fall victim to some other New Zealand fate, *please* write the book! Perhaps others would care to add their encouragement.

  3. o’neill monkinis
    It is curious – curious that physical courage should be so common in the world, and moral courage so rare

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