" The aikido practiced by Kobayashi Hirokazu (1929-1998) disciple of the founder Ueshiba Morihei (1883-1969), implies a use of the body which goes far beyond simply controlling it by will or developing reflexes.
The founder Ueshiba Morihei developed his techniques by analogy with the movements in nature, particularly by observing water. According to his concept of movement, it should follow a spiral of energy (meguri) which is expressed around the centre of vital energy (seika tanden). He used centrifugal and centripetal forces, and the speed they create in order to unbalance the attacker, combined with a system of twisting, rotating or stretching the latter's body articulations that an appropriate evasive movement has allowed to seize while avoiding the attack. He developed an idea of harmony and universal aesthetics which is strongly linked to the basis of Japanese culture (shochikubai, wabisabi) and to a mystic concept of the world particularly inspired by the Omotokyo doctrine, which had finally evolved into a pacific ideology after many tribulations. The non-violence of this aikido resides in the idea of not physically countering the attack but deflecting it so that the attacker is dominated by the conjunction of technical mastery, suppleness, the spirit of non-resistance and unity with the world.
This last notion recalls an attitude of physical consciousness that Ueshiba Morihei described in an evasive manner as the capacity to connect with the universal totality, a faculty that he developed by training and prayer. Concerning prayer, he sang norito daily, carried out purifying ablutions but also included in his practice ritual gestures from Omotokyo and Shinto (Misogi) practices. He developed two very interesting ideas in the martial context (Read more...) "