Thursday, June 4, 2009

Aikido and Politics

Firstly I want to say this, I've no interest in Politics and I especially dislike Politics in Aikido.
Funnily enough, politics used to be a good word. I remember when people used to refer to So and so being politic to someone else, i.e. tactful. Now the connotations are different. Politics are more closely related to fraud, embezzlement, corruption and dirty money. 

Ironically, Aikido the art of peace is never far from Politics as well. The saying goes, one man is an island, two a company and three a party. It's not even funny anymore because it's true.

I wanted to write about this, because sooner or later you will encounter politics in Aikido. Sure, at the start everyone is nice, everything is hankydory and everything you learn at the dojo is amazing. But as you progress and the magic seems to be waning (I'll get to this later), you'll here more and more about whose side you should be on, why you can't train with this sensei or that organisation or something like that.

You'll wonder to yourself, what have you gotten yourself into. Don't worry, that's life. Any martial art, any organisation... I bet you that you'll find some kind of political powerplay going on.

The best advise I can give you is just listen politely and continue to train with your principals and objectives in mind. Remember, your aikido rank is only valid in class. It doesn't translate into the real world. A black belt is meaningless if you can't help yourself against despair, anger, fear or defeat. 

If you can do irimi, you can do it. The answer is never, if you're a black belt you can do irimi

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