This is a piece of work based on questions from prospective and new students and other interested parties. “Will I be able to defend myself?”, or variations on the theme cross the path of every teacher and of most students of Aikido. This is an attempt to answer those questions through the lens of our critics – those who regard Aikido as a lesser art for various reasons. By doing it this way this essay actually goes beyond the question of the title and uses the idea of self-defence as a way to try and describe some of the values that Aikido introduce into the life of the practitioner.
In “Seeking the Unicorn” Dr. Tzechovoy brings to bear vibrant life the interwoven physical and psychological transformations that take place within the body and self of the long-term practitioner of martial arts. He guides the reader to understanding these experiences via a juncture of psychoanalysis, Western philosophy and his own many years of practice as a martial artist.
The book follows the slow progression and development from student to teacher in a traditional school of aikido. The author elaborates on seemingly insignificant events of training and practice while shedding an originally new light on their inner value, infusing them with entirely different meanings to the conventional interpretation of martial arts in general and aikido in particular.
An unassuming encounter with Chiba sensei’s has become a unique gift that thoroughly transformed Dr. Tzechovoy’s inmost self; a small remark on the behalf of Chiba sense’s teacher; O-Sensei leads him to deep investigation into the relationship between Japanese teachers and their students, investigation that illuminates the role of such rapport in creating an independent and mature human being.
Dr. Tzechovoy belongs to the Birankai school of aikido. He pays tribute to the writings of T.K. Chiba Sensei and to the experiences shared with him on and off the mat. However, practitioners of all types of martial arts will see their own experiences and challenges, critically yet constructively, examined and clarified in “Seeking the Unicorn”
In this volume, nine renowned experts delineate their theoretical or methodological approach of Aikidô in potentiating constructive handling of social conflicts. The authors depict the contribution of the Japanese self-defensive art Aikidô to the theory and practice of conflict transformation. The concept of Elicitive Conflict Transformation (Lederach, Dietrich) necessarily calls for a revised understanding of applied peace work and a new personal profile of the conflict worker. This is the point where Aikidô and conflict/peace work meet.
By the Author: Being, Essence & Motion is an Aikido memoir of thoughts, ideas and training tips I have accumulated from almost 40 years of study and training. The book is not intended as a training manual.Rather my intent is to shed some light on the internal changes that have been wrought in me as a result of my long term commitment to the study of this Art.Main Body
From the Publisher: This book presents an historical, cultural, and philosophical look at the development of the Japanese martial art of Aikido. Sunderlin focuses on the influences brought to bear on Morihei Ueshiba, the founder of Aikido, and the subsequent cultivation of the latter’s martial art as a vessel of Budo. The author also provides a look at the different directions Aikido has taken since its inception and tackles some of the criticism leveled by practitioners of other martial arts, then offers ideas for strengthening Aikido as a viable method of self-defense while calling for increased cooperation between its numerous styles. The book is NOT an Aikido “How to,” though its technical characteristics are discussed. The topics are in-depth and complex. Includes 17 chapters with endnotes, tables, figures, pictures, a glossary, special editorial comment, a bibliography, and an index; dark blue cloth coverboards with gold impressed spine lettering and a dust jacket. The author is the acting head of Zantoppa Kai Aikido, which is a derivation of Tomiki Ryu Aikido. Beginning his study of Aikido in 1980, he studied under Carl Geis, Shihan; Tsunako Miyake, Shihan; and Takeshi Inoue, Shihan. He has also trained in Western Wrestling and Boxing; Japanese Judo, Tenjin Shin’yo-ryu, Jodo, and Shiatsu; and Chinese Hung Ga Kung Fu. He is known for his outspoken viewpoints regarding Aikido’s problematic metaphysical ideas and interorganizational strife. A “Special Edition” hardback issue was added in mid-2015.
Aikido’s focus is on the practices that do not hurt people or take their lives, which makes it different from other aggressive martial art forms. Skills and actions which a person trained in the art of Aikido are mainly created to deflect opponent’s concentration and disable it. Many people favor this martial art because of its peaceful and harmonious ways unlike aggression and conflict found in other disciplines. The man that introduced and developed this art was called Morehei Ueshiba. He thought that the art of harmony was to direct the anger and make it result in no harm. What also separates Aikido from other martial arts is the fact that Aikido exploit the hands as a weapon and the followers of Aikido don’t use weapons.
Aikido is usually practiced in a Dojo, where learners of this discipline can learn in relation with variations that come from time to time. This is a part of the style that all Aikido followers are trying to attain. Aikido’s first purpose is to practice and learn through about good values as well as mysticism. Although it may seem odd, Aikido is the way to have a peaceful mind.
This book is mainly centered on Aikido in general, so that everyone has a very clear idea what Aikido is, and how it will benefit you and your lifestyle.
This collection of writings on training in Aikido, a traditional mind-body art, comes from the perspective of two instructors, Michelle L. Tate and Lisa R. Tomoleoni, who see themselves as lifelong students of the art. Presented alternatively in pithy prose and delightful verse interspersed with excellent photographs, this book takes the reader through the authors’ journey of life lessons gained through sustained training. We get an insider’s view of training at the Aikido Hombu Dojo and in Iaido from Tomoleoni Sensei and glimpses of the landscape shaped by Aikido in Tate Sensei’s mind. What shines through the narration is their sense of gratitude for the art and their teachers. Together these two viewpoints combine to create a book that is hoped to be inspirational, and to share the growth, challenge, joy and fulfillment that this particular form of training has brought them, and continues to bring to their lives.
From the Publisher: “Is there a way to heal the modern heart and mind, a path that leads to interconnection, shared values, and the integration of the person? Can we learn to act as harmonious body-minds, seeking to create a better social and natural environment? This book charts a pathway through such difficulties. Professor David Shaner describes how to remain centered and focused; he edges the reader closer and closer to a life of joy, fulfillment, growth and social contribution. This is an important book for our times, for it seeks to help you connect with something larger than yourself.”
Subtitled “Seven Arts to Positively Transform Your Life”, this is not an Aikido book, but the author, a longtime direct student of Koichi Tohei, speaks to life fulfillment from a perspective full of aiki philosophy and principles.
In Tenchi (Heaven and Earth in Japanese) the author convincingly argues that the connection between mind and body is part of mankind’s natural heritage of power. The book consists of a series of essays that makes use of historical and contemporary material to show how that power has always been available as a free and natural resource.
The author draws on his own personal experience in both Zen and Aikido training over three decades to suggest that disempowerment is a matter of choice rather than fate. The book discusses what that power is, where it comes from and how to cultivate and use it responsibly.These essays will entertain and inform , while respectfully nudging the reader away from the entanglements inherent in the pursuit of the exotic and esoteric.
Tenchi argues that mankind is not an isolated creature, but part of a massive energy exchange system that we ignore at our peril. The author presents a view of man as an agent of power with the innate capacity to realise that power and the responsibility that comes with it.These essays challenge the reader to explore the legacy of power left to us by our forefathers.
Man stands in the centre between heaven and earth. This position endows us with a unique opportunity to draw power from nature, and to develop a natural store of energy, wisdom and compassion that can transform our relationships with each other and our environment. Tenchi is not a ‘how to’ book, but it does provide some simple mind body exercises that the reader can try out for themselves.
Tenchi points the way to a more expansive view of mankind through the practice of mind body training, and reminds us that the power that nature has bequeathed us is the only infinitely renewable resource that we have.