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"Definitions" Transcript - Episode 45

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• Aikido is a Budo.

• A Budo is a Technology of the Self whose cultural history is East Asian in origin.

• A Technology of the Self is a systematized collection of discourses, experiential paradigms, and practices, aimed at a cultivating of a culturally accepted perfected state or valued way of being.

• The “perfected or valued way being” upheld in Budo is the deconstructing of the Ego-Tripartite and the liberating of a person from its associated subjective and negative experience of the world.

• The Ego-Tripartite is a particular functioning of the non-cultivated mind, and consists of the following interdependent and co-arising aspects: Identity or Selfhood, A Dichotomous Worldview, and Behavioral Patterns Restricted to an Attraction-Avoidance Spectrum.

• The deconstructing of the Ego-Tripartite has historically been referred to as “Awakening,” “Enlightenment,” “Ecstasy,” “Divine Communion,” etc.

• As a Budo, Aikido is a Technology of the Self that deconstructs the Ego-Tripartite through the utilization of a Combat System as a means toward this end.

• A Combat System is an organized set of strategies and tactics designed to establish an advantage over another person that is trying to establish a competing advantage over you.

• There is a concentric relationship between the Deconstructing of the Ego-Tripartite and the utilized Combat System in Aikido. Their relationship is not a dichotomous one. Meaning, as a Budo, it is concentrically held that the more skilled one is at deconstructing the Ego-Tripartite, the more skilled one is at the utilized Combat System.

• As a Combat System, Aikido is a variant of what today can collectively be called Jiu-Jitsu.

• Jiu-Jitsu is a Japanese rendition of an East Asian combat application of Yin-Yang Theory and its associated preference for Non-Contestation.

• While Aikido shares many things in common with other Budo, with other Technologies of the Self, with other Combat Systems, AND with other Jiu-Jitsu, there are nevertheless things that distinguish it. Among these things, there are two that are the most defining:

1. While Aikido like other Jiu-Jitsu utilizes Yin/Yang Theory and preferences the strategic and tactical value of Non-Contestation, it technically aligns itself with the fewer East Asian Combat Systems that achieve these ends energetically and not materially, internally and not externally.

Aikido’s energetic and internal applications of Yin/Yang Theory and its preference for Non-Contestation has a concentric relationship with its combat effectiveness and its aim of deconstructing the Ego-Tripartite. The relationship between these aspects is not a metaphorical one nor one of analogy. Meaning, the very means by which the Ego-Tripartite is deconstructed, IS the very means by which Yin/Yang Theory and Non-Contestation is energetically and internally manifested, IS the very means by which combat effectiveness is achieved.

2. While other Jiu-jitsu are Budo, and are thus Technologies of the Self aimed at deconstructing the Ego-Tripartite through the utilization of a Combat System as a means to this end, other Jiu-jitsu have predominantly utilized discourses founded and developed in East Asian schools of thought. Some of these schools are Confucianism, Exoteric and Esoteric Buddhism, Taoism, and Shintoism. Aikido, developed relatively later in history, makes use of these discourses, knowingly and unknowingly, BUT it also makes use of discourses associated with the religiosity of its time. In particular, Aikido makes use of discourses associated with the formation of what are today called Japan’s “New Religions.” These New Religions were indeed continuations of Japan’s History of Religions, culturally speaking, but they also were syncretic traditions that adopted religious aspects borrowed from traditions outside of East Asia’s ancient history. Specific to Aikido, discourses from Christianity were borrowed, utilized, and further developed. In particular, these discourses were borrowed from Christian Mysticism. They were then understood to be concentric with Aikido’s greater and older culturally historical discourses. For example, Christian Mysticism’s “Divine Communion” “Divine Possession,” the “Ecstasy Experience,” that is the experience of the loss of self, as well as the understanding of SERVICE as a potent spiritual practice, such as when one is an instrument or a vessel of God, and Love as a universal and unifying aspect of Creation and of the Divine, all came to be concentrically understood as the same process by which the Ego-Tripartite is deconstructed, which is the same process by which the strategy and tactic of Non-Contestation is manifested energetically and internally, which is the same process by which combat effectiveness is achieved.

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