Aikido is not about using your partner or enemy’s strength against him. Neither is it about harmonising with your opponent.
It is about using energy at its equilibrium.
Energy has no proprietary. We all have it. In strength, in vigour, in ‘ki’. We say he is ‘strong’ or she is ‘quick’. The issue here is the personification of an attribute which is generally, universal. A person does not possess his ‘strength’. The strength he possess does not belong to him. No one owns strength, vigour or anything at all. Everything is universally shared. It just simply resides in a person for a specific period of time.
In order to truly tap into the virtues and paradox of Aikido, we need to understand that nothing is this world belonged to anyone. Only when we can do that, can we become aligned with the universal path.
Take for example a Shomen Uchi technique. When your partner raises his hands to strike, do you raise in anticipation, or to let the hand fall and ‘catch’ it in its downward momentum and using the downward energy to your advantage?
None of the above.
You meet the hand in equilibrium. At the apex of the energy, where the upward, forward energy is about to transform into downward, forward energy. In other words, you meet the hand at the point where the upward and downward meet. That is the apex where your uke’s momentum is at its minimum, or at its ‘weakest’.
From there if you can perfectly meet your uke’s hand, you will be able to effortlessly bring the hand down, safely, without hurt or harm to both parties. Of course, if you are able to do that, your partner will also be able to do that, So he who is able to detect and use the ‘space of momentum-less’ to act, will be the one who prevail. However, he who rein supreme, will be one who is able to create that space. He who is able to create that space will be one who dictate that space. And in order for one to create that space, one must be egoless, selfless, in action and in reaction, all become one.
When that happens, the opponent no longer becomes your opponent, but all will become in sync. Synchronicity is ultimate law of the universal, where everything relates to everything is a smooth seamless symphony.
First published 1 Feb 2014