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Thread: Aikido Flavours: Aikikai to Yoshinkan: What's in a Name?

  1. #16
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    Default

    The common feature running through all these posts is that the so-called 'styles', 'flavors', call them what you will, were all started by individuals who separated from the Founder, with his blessing or without it. In fact this is also what happened to Morihei Ueshiba himself, in his relationship to Takeda Sokaku. This was to be expected. A number of people trained with Morihei Ueshiba for only a short time and in fact he told one, the sumo wrestler Tenryu, that a few months would be enough. Then they went off and did their own thing. The Japanese have a general rule of dealing with things "case by case" and this is what has happened with aikido.

    In many cases the name changed, or was modified in some way, but not according to any planned policy. The idea of a definite 'style' is more common outside Japan than here. For example, there is a Takemusu Aikido Association, based in Iwama and centred round Morihiro Saito, but there are many such organisations and no one here believes that Iwama aikido is fundamentally different from Aikikai aikido. In Europe, however, people talk of Iwama Ryu and think of it as a self-contained structure, completely separate from the Aikikai. But this is to think in legal terms, which has less prominence here.

    As for high dan ranks, the Founder verbally awarded tenth dan to a number of individuals and in one or two cases a certificate was also issued. Then the giving of dan ranks was systematized and rules established. The system makes 8th dan more or less equivalent to Menkyo Kaiden and this is also how the Founder himself saw it. Ninth and tenth dans were given as personal expressions of esteem, rather than a mark of technical progress. Kisshomaru Ueshiba continued this practice of awarding 9th dans, but the present Doshu has not done this so far.

    I am preparing an aikido 'family tree' and will put it at the top of the thread.

    Best regards to all,
    Peter Goldsbury,
    Forum Administrator,
    Hiroshima, Japan

  2. #17
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    Hi Tony;

    In Quebec at least quite a few. One problem with them is that what Mochizuki developed was pretty broad so what I saw was heavy on the Karate and very weak on the Aikido. I understand there are dojos where this is reversed and some that balance it out pretty good.

    Paragaph removed at PRhese's request

    In Toronto I met a lady training at Kimeda's dojo who was from Yoseikan. Her Aikido was superb.

    Originally posted by tmanifold
    Is there a yoseikan group in Canada?
    Last edited by tmanifold; 25th February 2003 at 17:06.

  3. #18
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    Default Yoseikan in Canada

    Tony,

    There are actually three different groups operating in Canada that are basically Yoseikan and it would seem that people have seen all three. Yoseikan International is a group actually led by Patrick Auge, who appeared at the demos in the Aiki Expo in Las Vegas last year. He was a long time student of Mochizuki Sensei and has chosen not to recognize Hiroo Mochizuki as the head of the style and so has gone his own way. They are traditional and they would be seen as very good at the aiki part of the style.

    Marc Beaudry in Trois Riveres is the Canadian technical director for the Yoseikan World Federation, which is the umbrella organization for the official Yoseikan. They have been, traditionally, much more focused on the karate portions of the style and would be much better at that part of the curriculum.

    There is a third group, Aikido Mochizuki, that I believe to be in the Montreal area and it is headed by Roger Roy. He is an excellent budoka, 5th Dan in Yoseikan (I believe) and they practice the very traditional Yoseikan aspects. As an added plus, the sword work they do is very tradition Katori Shinto Ryu. They have regular clinics and are affiliated, as we are in the U.S., with the Yoseikan World Federation.

    See Tony, isn't that more than you ever wanted to know about Yoseikan in Canada? BTW there is a Yoseikan Karate in the U.S. that we have no idea what they do because they are in no way affiliated with any of the Mochizuki aspects. They have been around awhile but I have no idea where they got the name from.

    Phil Farmer
    docphil

  4. #19
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    Originally posted by P Goldsbury I am preparing an aikido 'family tree' and will put it at the top of the thread.
    I am very much looking forward to seeing the family tree when it's completed.
    Kevin Tuck

  5. #20

    Default Seidokan Aikido

    FWIW, Seidokan is another organization, smaller than most, but with a a fairly strong following. Seidokan was started by Rod Kobayashi in Los Angeles.

    Seidokan Aikido's headquarters is located in Los Angeles at the Aikido Institute of America dojo (http://www.aikidoinstitute.com).

    History (FWIW) from the Seidokan website (http://www.seidokan.org)

    ----------------
    Roderick T. Kobayashi was born in Hawaii and raised in Japan by his grandfather who was a Buddhist priest. Since his youth, he had been deeply involved in learning the history and philosophy of budo (Japanese martial arts).

    He was first introduced to Aikido by his father who had great influence in inviting Master Koichi Tohei, who was then Chief Instructor of Aikido at the Aikido World Headquarters in Japan, to Honolulu in 1953. However. his formal training in Aikido did not start until 1957, after his 3 years of military service. His first teachers at the Hawaii Aikikai were master: Yukiso Yamamoto, Kazuto Sugimoto, and Isao Takahashi. These masters were the first students of Tohei Shihan, the foremost authority on Aikido and Ki in the United States. Each of these masters was unique in his own way, and had a great influence in Kobayashi's understanding of Aikido and Ki.

    Kobayashi's training with Master Tohei began in 1961. He trained under Tohei Sensei whenever possible in Japan, Hawaii and the continental U.S. He received his Shodan (1st degree black belt) in 1962, Nidan (2nd degree) in 1965, and San dan (3rd degree) in 1966. After becoming a full time professional Aikido instructor in the fall of 1968, he was promoted to the rank of Yondan (4th degree). He was also appointed as one of the two non-Japaneese nationals to receive the rating of Hombu Shidoin, instructor of Aikido for the Aikido World Headquarters, Tokyo, Japan. He assumed the responsibilities of the President and Chief Instructor of the Western States Aikido Federation until 1974. He was promoted to the rank of Godan (5th dan) in January, 1972. In September, 1973 Kobayashi was promoted to Rokyudan (6th degree), or master teacher.

    As Master Tohei organized the Ki-no-Kenkyukai (Ki Society International) in 1971, Kobayashi was one of the most outspoken supporters of the Ki training program and the applications of the Ki principles in Aikido and daily life. In January, 1973. he was appointed as Koshi (full lecturer) of the Ki-no-Kenkyukai and received the certificate of Okuden (certification of completion of the innermost training in Ki).

    In May, 1974, when Master Tohei founded his own system of Aikido, Shishin Toitsu Aikido, Rod Kobayashi began assuming the responsibilities of both the Chief Lectureship of Ki Development and the Chief Instructor of Shinshin Toitsu Aikido of the Ki Society Western USA.

    Kobayashi began lecturing for the Physical Education department of the California State University, Fullerton in 1972. His goal was to establish a program at the University which would develop and certify well trained instructors of Aikido and Ki.

    Rod Kobayashi has conducted numerous workshops throughout the United States, Israel, Russia, Europe, and Mexico. However, his main contribution was the founding of the Aikido Institute of America in Los Angeles, California. It was established for the purpose of developing instructors of Aikido in the United States. He emphasized the principles of Aikido; the Principal of Oneness which the founder, Master Morihei Ueshiba has professed and the Principles to Unify Mind and Body which, Master Tohei compiled.

    The teaching methods at the Institute are designed for developing instructors. The instructors who are trained at the Institute are fully qualified to instruct the principles and the techniques of Aikido. Furthermore, the Institute emphasizes the application of the Aikido principles in daily life. Kobayashi strongly believed that Aikido instruction in the United States should be trained in the United States.

    In March, 1981. Rod Kobayashi resigned from the Ki Society International and branched out to establish his own system of Aikido: Seidokan Aikido. Seidokan Aikido emphasizes the balanced practice of principle and techniques. The purpose of the system is to further develop Aikido so that it is better suited for the modern way of life.

    The Doshu has accepted Seidokan Aikido as a legitimate system of Aikido. He and Kobayashi Sensei agreed that they shared the same goals and accepted the same fundamental principles of Aikido.

    In February. 1989. Rod Kobayashi and his associates organized the Seidokan Institute, Inc., a non-profit California corporation to share the principles of Seidokan Aikido to those who wish to learn them and apply them in their everyday lives without the practice of self-defense arts.

    On June 17th, 1995, Kobayashi Sensei passed away, at his home in Downey, California. He is succeeded by Stewart Chan, chief instructor of the Aikido Institute of America.
    Just fwiw.

  6. #21
    bruceb Guest

    Default Do me a flavour ...

    In 1985 I coined a phrase of 'Do me a Flavour .."

    I did not realize it would become popular for a number of years, or become the name of a Sandwich/ Ice Cream Shoppe in Beach Haven, NJ, but it did.

    My thought behind the words was the the world was full of favors, and some of them were full of tastes, colors of emotion, and just like food, the taste a favor left in your mouth was like the many flavors of food.

    Now, we all know that food have many different degrees of flavour that can change when it is grown in different environments, or cooked with varied spices, or even prepared by different means .... so too, is life full of different types of flavours, and even Aikido has many different flavours depending upon the tastes of teachers and practitioners.

    The fact that practitioners get riled up and post their banners as to the differences in names, lineage, and try to create a new house to be catagorized under separate from the Aikido house, it merely indicates the evolution of arts from parent arts.

    Get over it. Put that ego to bed, and go practice.

    Most average citizens think Aikido is under the Karate house anyway, so the fact that factions want to create a new house means nothing in the big wide world where many people believe that Martial Arts are Marshall Arts practiced by police, and other law enforcement agencys.

    Do me a flavour ... if you don't want to be under the Aikido house of flavours ... either move to one of the other martial arts, or create a new house for minoritys of minoritys of a minority .... OTHER will do just fine.

    This history of different flavours of Aikido is so much drum beating and chest thumping ... not at all Aiki ... at least in my poor western opinion in flavours of Aikido.

  7. #22
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    I hate to say it Bruce, but I think you entirely miss the point. Diversity is part of nature, and aikido (hopefully) in many ways mirrors nature. A dog is different than a cat. Not necessarily better, just different. Perhaps better for a certain job, like pulling a sled, or better for a certain person, because they like someone to bark when they come home.

    The "flavors" of aikido are no different...some people have different tastes, some people are looking to perform one job rather than another. Diversity. Nothing wrong with it, in fact, everything right with it. This is one of the few boards where people from different styles exchange information with each other without bashing, insulting, or crass behavior. If "flavors" is not your thing, please allow us to share amoungst ourselves. Or start your own thread about the "unity of the universe", or whatever. But lets keep the comments in here focused.

    Do it all
    -- Dan Harden

    Ron (not beating anything, especially not my breast) Tisdale

  8. #23
    bruceb Guest

    Default not the point ....

    The point is to either be satisfied with what ever house your art is under, or to move it. In a way, we are like a hardware store where particular tools or products are conducive to particular tasks. Some products may be used in different tasks, or cross over to other departments, but one must go to the department where the bulk of sales dedicate that product to be used.

    It is no different in Martial arts. What are the bulk of techniques identified with in terms of recognition. I don't see anyone from the USAF writing biographys about the teachers in the different branches of the USAF and how they relate to those branches?

    Would it make everyone happy if we canned the term Aikido and came up with new terms for each practice? Every flavour decribed in its category instead of being labeled as Italian food, greek food, chinese food, Japanese food, etc, etc ...

    As my daughter says when I go to Aikido practice,''...you going to karate tonight?"

    There are a lot of ways to cook steak, chicken, or vegetables ... but they are still steak, chicken, or vegetables not matter how you flavour them.

    That is my point.

    It is fun to have a history, and a lineage, but to understand what is different about your practice within a given house of martial arts, and to humbly go about practice should take precedence over touting any particular flavour of Aikido.

    Have fun ... Just wanted to point out we should look at the simularitys, rather the differences, that bind us together and group all the flavours under Aikido.

  9. #24
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    And my point is that no one is doing what you suggest. And that you could make the point elsewhere, and let us enjoy the commeraderie of diversity.

    Ron

  10. #25
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    Default Korindo Aikido

    I practice Korindo Aikido, which is a style founded by Minoro Hirai.
    I will post another message about the style etc. once I have the time to write a full descriptive message.

    Amir
    Amir Krause

  11. #26
    bruceb Guest

    Default To be perfectly clear ....

    I am not adverse to having different styles of martial arts compared to Aikido, and even the history/ evolution of that art, but the comparison of techniques, manner in which training is pursued, and manner in which techniques are either simular or different should be the criteria for "Flavours."

    There in .... we are not just talking about flavours, but toppings, preparation, smell, and the subliminal thoughts that go into a dish of ice cream .... er .... style of aikido. I think you get it.

  12. #27
    dachish Guest

    Default

    Nice to see a rep for Yoseikan Mr Farmer. I train under Harris Sensei in HSV and I wanted to add my input to the topic, but having trained for barely two years I didn't want to run the risk of giving misinformation =)

  13. #28
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    Default Hi Nick

    Glad to see you as a new member, Nick. I wonder if we met when I was in Huntsville in October for GA. I hope you have the information about Mitchi Mochizuki being here in Nacogdoches in April. Try to come, it will be a good clinic. Anyway, nice to see some more Yoseikan people on the forums.

    I have to also address bruceb. You know I keep you on my ignore list but it doesn't work when I access notes via email. So what do I read but more inane attempts at pseudo philosophical input. Bruce, I tried to defend you once upon a time but you did not take the hint. You have become the laughing stock of ebudo with your useless and meaningless input. This is a great thread that could really lead to some good discussion about the differences between aiki styles.

    I have students who move away to places where there is no Yoseikan (imagine that, a place without Yoseikan) and they want to find styles of aikido that are close to what they have already trained in. That is the primary reason we need this thread, so people can choose a style, within aikido, that fits them and perhaps their previous training.

    Tony, I don't suppose you could persuade John to just block Bruce from posting on the Aiki forum? Is that possible?

    Phil Farmer
    docphil

  14. #29
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    Phil, Bruce has been discussed in the Admin forum and so far the consensus is, for now, if he really annoys you keep him on ignore. As a side note if anyone has a problem with anyone else please PM me as opposed to doing it on an open forum. It is just rude and not the best way. Any PMs sent to me will be kept in confidence and only shared with those who need to now ie other mods and John. Hopefully we can sort out issues without resulting to banning.
    Phil if the above solution does not seem fair to you please send me a PM discussing why you feel that way and we will work from there.
    Tony Manifold
    " Attack, attack, attack- come at your target from every possible direction and press until his defenses overload. Never give him time to recover his balance: never give him time to counter"
    Stover

    http://members.shaw.ca/tmanifold

  15. #30
    dachish Guest

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    Actually I met you at both the Feb clinic last year, and the one in Oct. I'm afraid I missed actual practice during October due to a non-Aikido related injury but I made it to the party and meeting. Actually I think it may have been you I was supposed to with the member card layout but I guess you had that pretty well under control, if that was in fact you. Regardless, I at least know for certain who you are =), just not if you were doing the cards.

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