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Quotes & Reflections from National Instructor's Seminar

posted Sep 4, 2019, 11:24 AM by Minnesota Ki Society   [ updated Sep 4, 2019, 11:25 AM ]
Kirsten Welge attended her first National Seminar as a third kyu student in 2014. The 2019 National Seminar was her first opportunity to experience Shinichi Tohei Sensei's Instructor's Class, and fully appreciate the North American Ki Aikido community. Here, Kirsten shares quotes from Tohei Sensei's teaching, together with her reflections.

"Experience. Feel. Master. Sometimes we think too much, explain too much. All we have to do is experience. Feel with the whole body, and learn from this." - Shinichi Tohei Sensei
  • Aikido and ki principles are learned through the body, not thinking or talking. 
  • The best way to teach is to keep one point, then share that experience and feeling with another.
"Let me know the state of my mind. You don't have to get some result first!" - Tohei Sensei
"What is my basic concept? Push? Or keep one point and touch?" - Tohei Sensei
  • Examiners must keep one point precisely and just touch. No pushing. No result in mind. Be aware and responsible for your mind.
    • If the examiner's concept is to push or show the other where they are wrong, that's not it. 
    • When testing, connect as though the other person is sick and asking for help. The intent is to support.
  • How do you show your partner when they are making an error? 
    • Mimic them. Ask, "What do you feel?"
    • Then, show the correct way, so they feel the difference. 
    • Then, ask them to correct the error, and ki test. Ask them, "Is this easier?"
    • Then, ask them, "Can you show your earlier way?" Test. Ask "Is it easy?" No.
    • Leave them with a clear difference in feeling. 
"Keep one point and test." - Tohei Sensei

This is very simple, but can be very difficult to practice. What can help us with this? 
  • Curtis Sensei offered three points: Look at your partner's face. Feel with your body. Show, by moving with your partner.
    • It's not the feeling of, "How do I push my partner?" but "How do I take care of you?"
  • We can practice connecting and feeling shifts in the body or attention by touching our partner on the shoulder with a soft hand. 
    • As they tense different parts of their body, we can feel where ki gets stuck, and share what we feel. 
    • This is how we become familiar with what tension in different areas feels like.