Art with no enemy

I was training/teaching up north on the weekend and we were exploring advanced aikido principle. I say advanced but really a very basic concept. To be in the here and now both physically and mentally.

We say we are, but actually our body action, posture, weight distribution and intent tell a different story.

The beauty of Aikido was the founders idea of an art with no enemy. No enemy means no one to do something to. We do something to ourselves in space and time relative to an external stimuli, but we never do technique on another person.

This is a very difficult concept to grasp.

Surely aikido is one person doing and another having it applied. Then these two swap roles.

Maybe that is correct on some levels, and it’s a good start, I suppose.

But I like to think of aikido as both these people having the same role. Attempting to understand universal harmony in a chaotic situation.
Nage isn’t doing technique but providing a movement in relation to a threat that neutralises the threat before it arises. Not after it has arisen, before it has the chance to arise.

This happens to them, inside them and through them.

Uke’s job is to give an attack without regard to consequence, then navigate the ensuring chaos by absorbing and redirecting incoming forces THAT THEY THEMSELVES CREATED..

Uke therefore is unravelling and destroying the disharmony that they initially created, turning negative intent into harmonious flow.

This has created an opportunity for both practitioners to each deal with their own heart, mind and intent and ask themselves – What sort of human being am I trying to be?

An enemy only exists in our minds. Resistance only originates in opposition to something created in the mind.
Strong, fast, slow, afraid and ideas of superior inferior – all mental projections, all mind creations and all able to be overcome through the founders Aikido vision.

A martial art without enemy is a thing of true peace, a world without enemies a utopia.
When we can truly understand what is written above, not just say it but live it, feel it and intuit it, then the road to peace is within our grasp.
Without it the philosophy of Aikido is like words whispered on a spring breeze….

Peter Kelly

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