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Re: Dhatu Vada Kata (subtitled, the myth of the correct kata)
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Quote:

TenChiJin Guy wrote:
Quote:

antizen wrote:
...I don’t believe this is true either. My point simply is that there really can be no theoretically correct kata, and the only correctness or perfection is found in the process of training to find the correct kata, not in the kata itself.


Hi Greg -

My thoughts:

Back when these schools were independent, you spent a large portion of your life perfecting the mind, body, and spirit :: aligning it to the densho from your family. This kind of dedication - and singular focus, created a different kind of student in the art.

Today, we are realistically taking a survey course of the 9 ryu-ha, likely with outside influences as well (other martial studies). This produces students of the Bujinkan with very shallow understanding of several schools.

I would be very careful to assume that a survey course student could get the depth of a school's gokui without the singular focus needed to really embody the Ryu-ha spirit correctly. As such, there is(was?) probably a purer form than what you see being practiced - and that the purer form is lost without the full indoctrination. I would posit that this won't be found in any major differences - only the very subtle details that a master (or the Soke) would catch. It is, however, these subtle details that differentiate a practitioner from the master.

Just my .02. You can't pull principles from what you don't *really* understand...

-Daniel


I'm revisiting this in my mind now, since I replied mentally but didn't actually post to Kutaki. Bummer, 'cause now I'm just feeling like "that again?".

Anyway - yeah, what you said.

9 schools. In many ways its just too much, even considering we don't really study all 9 (what did you say to me Daniel, 3.5?).

The problem is with the exact thing you mentioned - gokui. And where does the feeling come from, beyond Hatsumi Soke and Takamatsu? Did past Sokes of Gyokko Ryu have any identifiable feeling that was passed on? We can *sense* a difference of feeling from Kukishin Ryu and Gyokko Ryu NOW, but outside of the "person" of the schools (for now, Hatsumi Soke) where is that feeling?

When all is said and done, we're really studying "Hatsumi Ryu Gokui" *from a certain point of view*. I recall Soke recently saying something to the effect of "if you study any Ryuha's kata with the feeling of Kukishinden Ryu then you're doing Kukishinden Ryu".

In 2006 I got the biggest and best dose of any school thus far - Gyokko Ryu. I personally would have been totally fulfilled to study Gyokko Ryu for the next 5 or 6 years, just going over the scrolls again and again in the hope of truly beginning to understand the nuances, as has been mentioned, and in the hope of finally achieving some mastery of at least one damn school.

For now, following Hatsumi Soke as best I can takes precedence over everything. There's time to review later, if I'm still able that is...

Posted on: 2007/7/28 9:44
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Re: Dhatu Vada Kata (subtitled, the myth of the correct kata)
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Greg said
Quote:
It’s as if there can be a form of a kata in
say,Kukishinden Ryu, that was originally correct, and remains correct despite the generations of guys f’ing it up with their own personal interpretation. We constantly talk about correct kata...as if it exists out there in space somewhere, independent of human influence and
pollution (search your heart Luke, you know it to be true).


If we go with this proposition, then the efforts of generations of practitioners mean nothing. They were colouring outide the lines of the kata all these years. It means that your teacher can't teach you, because ultimately, you either have the perfect kata or you don't. Kuden means nothing. "It's in the densho. Do it right and you've got perfect kata." That perspective disses your teacher who is supposed by tradition to be the conduit, via kuden, of the movement.

An additional problem is the separation of the practitioner from the practice, and that somehow that nature and the person in nature are separated, and that somehow we're above nature. Soke tells us again and again to move with nature, use your feeling, keep going.

I welcome counters or ammendments to the above assessment.

Quote:
...“Hongaku Shiso", or “original enlightenment”...is a principle that may have originated as a stereological (leading to salvation) device, but has lead to tremendous discrimination. The principles states that we are all basically enlightened as we are...


This is where Daniel et al. get so hot and bothered - the idea that somehow, what one practitioner does is the right kata for him/her, and that we all basically "get it" in our own way.

Hongaku Shiso, when applied to budo, could result in a divergent rather than a koryu, orthodox feeling, creating multiple interpretations which, over time, creates budoka (and ultimately, schools) whose movement is so different as to be "other". I have sympathy for guys who have cried "It's not authentic!" and left.

Where's the middle ground? I figure it's kihon, kihon, kihon and kihon. And kankaku, which can only be gotten through experiencing the movement with the Master or through his Shihan. We learn kata and kankaku from all the other folks who've got their own shattered bits of the kyuryuha.

What Daniel said - that we're receiving a survey course in nine schools. How many of us can dedicate hours of training to each school every year no matter what the year's theme is? Hm...I'm here watching the shihan train in only one ryuha each year, refining the ryuha and gradually getting it into their students. Nobody claims to have one ryuha "down pat" and nobody has time for anything other than the year's theme. Some of us here put in three to five training sessions a week and we are still only working on this year's theme.

This discussion is great intellectual exercise. To me, keeping the mind sharp is the same as keeping up the physical training.

I've popped my head up because my work duties have eased off for the summer(I work in schools and administration). I can't do this all the time. I think of the budo creed sensei wrote in the sword book that Doug and Bruce translated so deftly - Practice the martial and literary arts with equal determination. Be patient and be ready for what comes. I've got time for the literary part

Anyway, like I said, training in Japan's just like Christmas - here before you know it

Posted on: 2007/7/29 15:40
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Hehehe,,,
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Anyone who states they are an authority on what Hatsumi Sensei means, or makes a stand on any subject he has spoken on, is honestly deluding themselves and anyone who listems to them.

Stay a student... To preach is to call attention to yourself.

Posted on: 2007/7/29 16:24
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Re: Dhatu Vada Kata (subtitled, the myth of the correct kata)
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Quote:

antizen wrote:
When all is said and done, we're really studying "Hatsumi Ryu Gokui" *from a certain point of view*. I recall Soke recently saying something to the effect of "if you study any Ryuha's kata with the feeling of Kukishinden Ryu then you're doing Kukishinden Ryu".


Isn't that a given?

Aren't all the leaders of the school in their time and turn supposed to make the thing their own, give it their face, their flavour?

Not just coldly repeating what was passed on to them... which might make the flow... still... make the pool stagnant instead of refreshing?

Posted on: 2007/7/29 17:34
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Re: Dhatu Vada Kata (subtitled, the myth of the correct kata)
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Quote:

Erizabesu wrote:

If we go with this proposition, then the efforts of generations of practitioners mean nothing. They were colouring outide the lines of the kata all these years. It means that your teacher can't teach you, because ultimately, you either have the perfect kata or you don't. Kuden means nothing. "It's in the densho. Do it right and you've got perfect kata." That perspective disses your teacher who is supposed by tradition to be the conduit, via kuden, of the movement.



I loved your reply. Read it several times.

I'm just not sure I have anything further to add, except to say that I think there's a wholly natural process at work, like a giant Iceplant growing where it may, some of it dying and breaking off, other parts moving farther away from the mother root.

In all our discussing we tend, I think, to attempt to quantify what is evolving in the Bujinkan purely in accords with nature.

I'm happy to just be coloring at all. I guess it's up to each of us to know how sincerely we follow and learn from Soke Hatsumi.

Posted on: 2007/7/30 2:56
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Re: Dhatu Vada Kata (subtitled, the myth of the correct kata)
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A very difficult task indeed. I spend a fair amount of time talking to newer students trying to get them to understand that there is no particularly "right" or "perfect" kata, but there are what I would consider "wrong" ways. I see it like this. I will never get the perfect kata. That is not the goal, though. The goal is the process of working on getting the perfect kata. The goal is not to get to the top of the mountain, the goal is to learn from the walk along the way. The fact that my kata looks a bit different from Papasan's is fine -- as long as we are both continually working on making it better. The "wrong" comes in for me when people say "Hatsumi says make this art your own. I don't really like this kata; I like the way we did it when I was studying Xdo. So I am going to do it that way. Therefore, I am done, I have it." I will never get all of this art -- maybe none of it. But that is ok. It is the path of purification -- not the end -- that matters to me.

Jeff

Hi Ed! One flight from the house. Be home tomorrow!

Posted on: 2007/7/30 13:08
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Re: Dhatu Vada Kata (subtitled, the myth of the correct kata)
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Quote:

Shinobiko wrote:
...I will never get the perfect kata. That is not the goal, though. The goal is the process of working on getting the perfect kata.


Honestly, I don't understand this...

The goal "should be" the perfect kata - Right???

You may never reach it... but why on earth aren't you trying to get there?

Why are you even working on kata when you know the source for the information is considerably flawed? It makes no sense to ask for directions from someone who doesn't know the way to where you want to go, does it?

Or maybe that is why your goal isn't to get the perfect kata?

Honestly curious,

-Daniel

Posted on: 2007/7/30 14:20
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Re: Dhatu Vada Kata (subtitled, the myth of the correct kata)
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Daniel,
I think his point was that it's the journey that is the important part. Sure everyone is striving for perfection, but acheiving perfection isn't the important part. Trying to get there is.
Then again I could be completely wrong.

Posted on: 2007/7/30 16:14
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Re: Dhatu Vada Kata (subtitled, the myth of the correct kata)
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Quote:

h20oni wrote:
Daniel,
I think his point was that it's the journey that is the important part. Sure everyone is striving for perfection, but acheiving perfection isn't the important part. Trying to get there is.


Hey Alan -

I think I understand that part...

My real question is the idea behind heading FOR something.

It seems too often that people mistake movement for progress. Without a clear sense of direction, it is easy to make that mistake.

I guess I am saying it isn't good to fool yourself into thinking you are "on the journey" simply because you are in the car and driving...

Does that make more sense?

-Daniel

Posted on: 2007/7/30 16:43
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Re: Dhatu Vada Kata (subtitled, the myth of the correct kata)
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Daniel,
Yes, that is much better, thanks for explaining! I agree having a specific goal or inspiration is a huge help when doing anything. I think it's better to have specific goals (doing a back flip for example) rather than general(doing gymnastics). Of course it's also perfectly acceptable to have mulitple goals as well...
once again, my thoughts... probably wrong, but mine none the less...

Posted on: 2007/7/30 17:03
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