(A commentary by Robert Hundshammer, Deggendorf/Germany)
Aikido changes you. Even your perspective on everyday life. It somehow becomes a very important part of you. After many years of “Keiko” you even cannot go through a forest without discovering basic Aikido-principles and links to Aikido. So Shimizu-Sensei frequently chooses examples taken from nature to teach the background of his art. Thus the migration of cranes, the eye-catcher on the T-shirts of the 3rd twa-World-Seminar 2015, was chosen on purpose.
On a harmless hiking trip through the forest I suddenly became aware of the principle of ikkyo – so to speak, I met it personally!
Well, I know, that some people might say, “He must be kidding!” But here is my story:
On a mountain in the north of Thurmansbang *) a majestic natural wonder of the Bavarian Forest has been in existence for millions of years: the Wiggling Rock. It is an enormously huge stone of hardest granite, which weighs 50 tons. So I obviously did not believe the tour guide, which tells you: Make it wiggle!
Of course, I wanted to try it immediately. To me this was apparently a thing of raw manpower and testosterone. Therefore, I pushed hard and rammed against it again and again, but it did not move at all. The mighty rock kept completely motionless, and my girlfriend started grinning sardonically.
I stepped backwards and had a look on the statics. Suddenly I had some kind of vision of ikkyo omote in my head. Here, here at this very spot I must work: diagonally up! My hand pushed and I could feel the mighty rock beginning to move. Just a few centimeters, but at least it wiggled. I let the gigantic stone swing back and pushed rhythmically like you rock a cradle. To my surprise the 50 tons seemed to weigh nothing at all! A wonderful sensation arose in me. I was so happy – and I really want to share this feeling with other Aikidoka.
While climbing down the mountain I thought about ikkyo omote and recognized a similar principle: Just push the right point in the right angle – and the strongest uke will lose his balance. If you push the wrong point in a wrong angle, the opportunity will be over soon.
But ikkyo against the wiggling rock is easier than against a real uke because with the rock you can choose the timing and the distance all by yourself. And there is no need for ducking the attack.
But, honestly said, who wouldn´t like to use such a great opportunity to move 50 tons with one hand, by applying the principles of Aikido!?!
I wish you a lot of success and joy when you are doing the next ikkyo omote!
Robert Hundshammer (who lives where other people make holidays)