martes, 30 de diciembre de 2008


Os dejo aquí un interestante artículo de Yamada Sensei sobre los grados DAN. Interesante reflexión con mucho mensaje entre líneas.

A Message from Yamada Sensei

I'm sure you will soon be informed officially that the USAF is taking measures to ensure a positive and encouraging future. The board members all agreed to move toward unifying the federation on a national level instead of keeping the regional model we have now. There is still work to be done in finding the best way to do this and to make sure future policies address all members' needs.
In the past we have seen many occasions where a split would occur in a dojo, resulting in two or more dojos in the same city or town. I understand that there are many reasons for this, but I would like to see these things resolve in an amicable way. While some of the splits are unfortunate, they are also one of the reasons aikido has spread so far and wide. When a split does occur please remember that regardless of the reason, I cannot take sides. There are always friendships on both sides and I would like to keep those relationships in tact. I ask that all people involved act maturely so that everyone, the students and me, are not put in a difficult situation. If a split happens because of personal conflict, both sides need to assume responsibility; don't get into a blame game. Just try to get along peacefully.
The end of the year always has special meaning for me. It is the time for grading recommendations. It's nice to give promotions to people but at the same time it's difficult to make the decision to promote some people and not others. In any case, whether a person is promoted by recommendation or by testing, please do not criticize or make judgments. In aikido promotions many factors have to be considered. (Personally, I'm not in favor of a numbered black belt system, especially in aikido. It encourages competition.)
I've written some magazine articles about this and I've always received good responses. In aikido, it's very difficult to tell who is stronger than someone else. If you really want to find out you have to put both of them on the street. My consideration for promotion is based on how much a person is devoted to the art and how much time that person spends practicing. In other words, when the time comes, everybody will be promoted and end up in the same rank. For instance, everybody with the rank of 6th dan won't have the same abilities and it's obvious to everybody who is good and who is not.
For example, Tamura Sensei was 4th dan when I started aikido and now both of us have the same rank. And it's obvious to everybody, including myself, that there is a big difference between he and I. By the way, Tamura Sensei was recently promoted to 9th dan but he humbly refused it. I feel like I should have refused my 8th dan promotion.
I congratulate those who are recommended for New Year's promotions and I hope everyone else will congratulate them as well. Have a wonderful holiday season and a Happy New Year.

Yoshimitsu Yamada

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