Aikido- Kung Fu Life – Leo Imamura desafia Ricardo Leite parte 3

We will now go to our last round of our symbolic combat
with sensei Ricardo Leite, 7th Dan of Aikikai and one of the greatest Brazilian exponents of Aikidô
known worldwide. This combat will be
held through words. Called by Patriarch Moy Yat as “Sit Jin”, in other words,
“Tongs’ s War”. The last and final round
will resume immediately in today’s meeting
in the Kung Fu Life. Sensei, thank you for being here
one more time and let us go to our final round, when we will talk about
the systemic perspective of Bushinkan Aikidô. How did the idea of a
systemic perspective came to be? The systemic perspective of Bushinkan Aikidô was basically born from my experience
with Ottaiano Sensei, when he taught me how
to appreciate the sword. I have held more than 200
authentic pieces, originals, with my gaze being directed
by his specialized gaze. Obviously I don’t have the ability
to appreciate a sword as much as, logically, a master,
that oriented me and I could see riches and observed
and learned how he appreciated and understood that one must have
an structure to appreciate the art. And the systemic perspective
is an offer that I constructed from within what
already exists in Aikidô, there is no creation,
invention or innovation. It is a structure of relations
so one can better appreciate the art and localize oneself inside the art. One rich interpretation
of system I always heard from Sifu
when talking about Patriarch Ip… Ah… Patriarch Moy Yat. So I would like Sifu
to punctuate this assertion so I can better understand it myself of how he understood this issue of
system in Kung Fu. Ah, when he said that Kung Fu without a system is not Kung Fu….
Exactly! …And Kung Fu that relies in a system
is not good Kung Fu. In other words, we have to leave the idea of a simple method,
right? That idea that was born in China and was intensely
popularized in Japan, the idea of
“Sau, Poh, Lei”, and in Japan, “Shu-ha-ri”. I noticed that in the
systemic perspective of Bushinkan Aikidô you make use of this traditional process by utilizing
two important signs, right? The formal signs
and the immaterial signs, right? How could you explain
this idea of formal and material linked
to “Shu-ha-ri”, in other words that idea of
“Sau, Poh, Lei”? Why?
Beacause “Lei” is when you separate yourself from the system, is it not? And “Sau”, or “Shu”,
is when you preserve and accept. By the way, Patriarch Moy Yat
talked about “Sau” as obeying, than about “Poh”,
or “ha” in Japanese, as severing, breaking. It means that before creating something
one must first accept, obey. In other words, respecting tradition
to become able to criticize it. So I see that this
is hugely present in the systemic perspective of Bushinkan Aikidô, that is why I have a lot of admiration for this process
you are developing. So please,
present a little of this idea of signs
and its relations with “Shu-ha-ri”. This is about the relations of “Earth, Man and Sky”,
that is classical. “I Ching” itself,
that Sifu has already mentioned in his works, some recorded. The immaterial,
the sign of the immaterial that I used are the principles of Aikidô
that will necessarily be there,
are “aiki”, “kokiu” and “mossubi”, that we will have no time
for translating now. The material principals
the material signals, those from the way of practicing. So it is that
which necessarily happens, such as synchronizing the movement, one attacking and one defending,
that is “uke”/”tori”, transitioning from one side to the other,
“omote”/”ura” that can evolve
not only from front to back, but also occult to manifest, depending on the level
that one wishes to work. Therein lies the questions of “Shu-ha-ri”,
that is an important question that I see inside the system
professed by Sifu. The question of passing from levels,
from the level of preserving and obeying, “shu” or “sau” in Chinese. There is a point
In always preserve. Now, one can copy
sophisticated technics, sophisticated variations
and being always in the same level, regardless of the weapon
or movement that is there. Now, for breaking
this “alphabet” that you learned and start writing
one would have to have some conducting. I would like Sifu
to express a little of his understanding of this transition between
obeying and breaking the logic. That is why is so important
to have this fundamentals so clear in the obeying level,
including with interpretation depth, because otherwise one cannot sever, right? Severing comes from a critical analyses, but to have this critical analyses
it is important to accept. And the problem that is seen
in the present generations, ours for instance,
is that many times, specially among ourselves
that are foreigners in our Art, we Brazilians,
you with a Japanese art and me with a Chinese one,
we have this difficulty of comprehension. So this cultural
backtracking is very important. Why? So that we can appreciate
Aikidô culture, or Ving Tsun culture
inside its own cultures. Because otherwise
it will not make sense. One of the things that I most commonly see,
both in Ving Tsun and in Aikidô, is people talking that “no one fights
holding the fist first, or doing ‘Chi Sau’”,
for instance. And that comes from the ignorance of not understanding the initial
strategic configurations, in other words, like we already commented in our second round
the matter of the “Kamae”. The “Kamae” is very important,
the guard is very important. Not only how it is configured,
but in the process of its pre-figuration. Therein lies the importance
of molding oneself to the adversary, inside that logic
of complementary opposition, well known in both Aikidô and Ving Tsun. So in this process it is very important to comprehend
this fase of “Sau”, or “Shu”. I reminding that,
and this is very important for those that are listening and watching us,
that when I speak in Chinese I am using the Cantonese dialect,
because it is the one that I learned with my mentor,
Patriarch Moy Yat. So “Shu” is this idea
of acceptance and understanding, it is acceptance for understanding, “for the profound study”,
for this comprehension in depth. That is why I admire your work so much,
because it is giving depth to this study. And Why is that?
So afterwards you are able to criticize it, is it not? And you don’t need to wait so long.
Your experience in Aikidô has already exceeded 40 years. So all of this
has a lot of significance already. Because the western practitioners have already enough experience
to make a critic. But for that one needs to better understand
ones respective arts, in your case, Aikidô,
in my case Ving Tsun. As Sifu is saying,
it is not a cunning. Cunning is a wildly spread
term here in Brazil. It is not a “collection” of technics.
I know a different technic, I know a different “kata”…
It is not a collection. I mean, it is deepening study. And for that it is imperative to have
a systemic support and the support, as best as possible,
of a Master that can conduct and
support ones study for evolving from
one level to another. In the “ri” level,
or “Lei”, in Chinese, one starts to
leave the forms, it is to say, if one wants
to stay in with “cunning”, or in the collection of techniques,
one will stay in the same level despite the looks and awe of said techniques
they would be in the same level. So evolving,
breaking from, transcending, that is the level “Lei”
that Sifu refers to as non-structured, the informal “Lei”. In Aikidô,
from the systemic perspective that I use, those are the principles “Aiki”,
“Mussubi” and “kokyu”, flowing from someone in the stage,
or in the moment, that is not permanent,
but for the moment “ri”, that intermediated by it,
through it, one manifests “Kitai”,
that is the body of the energy. I don’t know if it is
like that the level of “Lei” as Sifu understands. No. I completely
agree with your explanation and, by the way, I’d like to close our combat with this message. Why?
Because I think that this is the essence of the Art. And we achieved this
point of “Lei”, this non-structured phase,
and because of that it does not matter if it is Aikidô ou Ving Tsun,
we all are martial artists. I would like to thank
Sensei Ricardo once more, it is always an honor
to be here contending, symbolically combating inside this
Kung-Fu perspective. I would also like to thank you
for accompanying this combat between
Sensei Ricardo Leite and I, and leave a message of best regards and until our next meeting in the Kung Fu Life.

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