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Thread: What art does this represent?

  1. #16
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    I practice Hakkoryu jujutsu, and much of its effectiveness simply isn't visible to an observer, unless that observer is well trained. We get accused of "bullshido" by those with literally no experience with a properly credentialed hakkoryu practitioner (and I've run into many who claim training, but who cannot even name basic principles). That said, this does look similar to the "no touch" and other ki-projection arts which have been rather thoroughly disproven when their soke or other highly placed practitioner accepted a challenge from, say, an MMA fighter.

    Ki, Aiki (as in aiki jj or aikido) are often poorly understood, and this isn't helped by new age concepts that gets inserted by those superficially familiar with ki, in order to integrate it into their prior understanding. Particularly in the west, we often see ki, as in Daito Ryu, as a use and redirection (i.e. physics) of an opponent's motion and energy, thus seeming to allow one to apply far more force or effort than they are actually putting into the motion, and this is an effective perspective. But ki does carry a certain mystical aspect, particularly within Japanese culture, and like anything with a mystical component, it can get misused, misnamed, and blown up into something it simply isn't. If you like mysticism, you can believe the demonstrator in the video is doing something ineffable. I don't personally believe that is happening here. As it is famously with the "master" of "death touch", George Dillman, I think we are seeing people who have bought into it and are simply performing the required motions to appear to be thrown or otherwise manipulated.

    I HAVE seen, and personally experienced (in Japan) tiny, old practitioners who could take one to the ground with seemingly effortless hand motions (presuming one grabbed their wrist firmly). These were men in the 70's and 80's, and it was just this June when I met them for an auspicious training event for our Ryu - they had come out of the woodwork, some not seen in the ryu for decades. They had this one skill in common (and which literally everybody else present had to experience) of simply being able to perfectly, seamlessly, and without effort (considering they were usually about 5'0" and 100 pounds or less), take any of us to the ground with very simple hand motion. BUT - we were firmly hanging on, if only for the moment it took for them to move. Very impressive, but not impossible to figure out with good observation. Extremely efficient use of subtle motions that combine into a surprising amount of power, while also expertly applying it to the perfect angle to take one off balance.

    Personally, I won't out-of-hand dismiss all claims that there is something more going on with ki or chi, but I can find more easily understood and effective understandings in the cases I've seen.
    Richard Berman
    Hakkoryu Jujutsu & Koho Shiatsu Igaku
    Shihan #3362, Hakkoryu International
    www.hakkoryu.com

  2. #17
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    I agree that aiki is quite real, as I practice it myself. However, the video posted at the start of this old thread looks like an intentional joke. There is no kuzushi (capturing of the center of mass upon contact); "attacks" are uncommitted and limp, with gaps at the point of "contact;" and there are moments when it is quite obvious that the "uke" is mugging for the camera, complete with throwing himself and making loud grunts and groans for effect. Sometimes, a cigar really is just a cigar, and this looks like one of those situations.
    Cady Goldfield

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  4. #18
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    I think we agree.
    Richard Berman
    Hakkoryu Jujutsu & Koho Shiatsu Igaku
    Shihan #3362, Hakkoryu International
    www.hakkoryu.com

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