Attraction-based thinking in Aikido

Those of you who know me well know that for the past year I have been very interested in what’s called combatives – or reality-based martial arts.  I very much wanted my martial arts practice to be grounded in practical approaches to modern combative scenarios that one may find one’s self in. At the same time, and separate from that, for the past year I have also been a student of the Law of Attraction: in particular the teachings in the book Askand It Is Given by Jerry and Ester Hicks.  The Law of Attraction presents a totally different understanding of how the world works than what I was used to. Its world view is so radically different and complete that I eventually had to wonder if the reality I was preparing for in my pursuit of reality-based martial arts was the correct reality to prepare for.

Which reality should be prepared for?

I have often thought about the implications of what living in an attraction-based world would mean towards one’s martial arts practice.  I shared some of these thoughts in my 18th weekly post and my 19th weekly post in which I discussed the benefits of combative ability as viewed through the standard world view (deterministic world view) and through an attraction based world view  (I will use the same terms in this post as I used in the two posts mentioned above; if you want a refresher, read the first two sections of those posts). In writing those two posts, I felt it was very difficult to discuss martial arts practice through an attraction-based view simply because as seen from the standard world view, one operating in an attraction-based world is seemingly transcending what people typically believe to be reality.  I couldn’t seem to make much sense of it, but then I came across this quote from Morihei Ueshiba who was the founder of Aikido:

Regardless of how quickly an opponent attacks or

how slowly I respond, I cannot be defeated.

It is not that my techniques are faster than those of my opponent.

By remaining in a state of harmony, I am victorious from the start.

As soon as the thought of attack crosses my opponent’s mind,

he shatters the harmony of the universe and is instantly defeated.

Ueshiba Sensei – Founder of Aikido

From a standard viewpoint (a deterministic stance) Ueshiba’s quote makes very little sense.  How could the speed of one’s response not matter?  If an enemy attacks one faster than one can respond, wouldn’t one get struck? From a deterministic standpoint, of course one would be struck; there is an incoming force that is faster than the force that one can muster so the incoming force wins.  That’s logical: by standard logic at least.

From an attraction-based standpoint, Ueshiba’s statement makes perfectsense.  In an attraction-based world, one’s natural state in one of abundance in which one is constantly receiving a stream of well-being, health, and prosperity from the source of all things (the universe)(which is not just “out there” by the way). Only wanted things enter into one’s life: aka only things that one is energetically in resonance with.  In this state of being, it is impossible for one to force something into another’s life that the other is not in resonance with.  In one’s trying to force something of this nature into another’s life, one distances one’s self from the source of all things and thereby distances one’s self from one’s own well-being.  Therefore, from an attraction-based view, one who is in harmony with the universe and has faith in one’s own intentions and natural state of abundance cannot fall prey to another’s ill intentions. In fact, in seeking to break the laws of the universe, the aggressor loses his/her own connection to the universe for that moment and is at the mercy of the harmonious defender.  From an attraction-based standpoint, this is simply universal law.

Now I’m not saying that Ueshiba Sensei was a teacher of the Law of Attraction.  I simply wish to point out the similarities between his teaching and those of how an attraction-based world works.

Though I had heard this quote before, I recently came across it in the book Abundant Peace by John Stevens.  This book is a thorough biography of Ueshiba’s life and also discusses his art and his teachings.  Something else that the book brings up again and again that Ueshiaba Sensei harped on was that budo (the way of the warrior) was not about contention, but that budo was about love. Ueshiba was a highly enlightened and self-realized individual who clearly did not subscribe to the standard world view.  Ueshiba taught that true budo, being based in love, was invincible.  From an attraction-based standpoint, it makes perfect sense why that is the case.

Postscript While this post was inspired by my continued reading of the book Abundant Peace that was assigned to me by Master Pearson, I should point out that this quote has already come up on the blog in an earlier post created by Master Pearson.  In fact, when I searched for the quote on google, his post was the first to come up! That’s pretty cool. All the books Master Pearson has assigned so far have been very enlightening.

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