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"Higher Consciousness Through Harder Contact" ©

Antonino Certa of Milan, Italy, demonstrates an advanced throwing technique from daito-ryu's hiden mokuroku scroll.

Antonino Certa of Milan, Italy, demonstrates an advanced throwing technique from daito-ryu's hiden mokuroku scroll.

Antonino Certa

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References

Amdur, Ellis. Dueling with O-Sensei: Grappling with the Myth of the Warrior Sage, Seattle: http://www.ellisamdur.com, 2000.

Draeger, Donn F. The Martial Arts and Ways of Japan, Volume 1: Classical Bujutsu (1973); Volume 2: ClassicalBudo (1973); and Volume 3: Modern Bujutsu and Budo (1974). New York: Weatherhill.

Harrison, E.J.. The Fighting Spirit of Japan. New York: The Overlook Press, 1982.

Pranin, Stanley. Daito-ryu Aikijujutsu: Conversations with Daito-ryu Masters. Japan: Aiki News, 2000.

Shishida, Fumiaki and Nariyama, Tetsuro. Aikido: Tradition and the Competitive Edge. USA: Shodokan Publishing, 2002.

very different arts, despite their technical and historical links. Neither can be called better than the other, as they have quite different objectives. It would be wrong to assume that aikijujutsu practitioners are automatically better at fighting.

A good way to summarize things is to say that aikido is a modern philosophy and way of life that can also be an effective defense system, while aikijujutsu is a classical combat system that can also lead to self-improvement.

As for the exact meaning of aiki, it has proved difficult to pin down with a single definition. In fact, interpretations vary enormously from art to art and even from teacher to teacher. But returning to the question initially posed in this article—namely, What's so aiki about peace, love and understanding?—the true answer must be: Originally, nothing! >•<

About the author: Dr. Nick Hallale has practiced the Chinese and Japanese martial arts since 1988. He has a Ph.D. in chemical engineering and taught for several years at the University of Manchester in England. He has written freelance articles about the martial arts for the past 10 years. The author is grateful to Antonino Certa and Giacomo Merello of Milan, Italy, for providing much of the technical information about daito-ryu. He also wishes to thank Dave Humm of the Higashi Kaigan Aikido Dojo in England.

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