Welcome to Brisbane Aikido Republic
We are dedicated to seeking excellence in the practice and understanding of Aikido. We seek like minded individuals to join us on the path.
At Brisbane Aikido Republic we seek to develop not only our skills but also ourselves through the study of this martial way.
Our classes are lead by Brisbane's first Aikido Yuishinkai instructors, who are active students themselves.
Based in a full-time martial arts centre on Brisbanes Southside that features with permanent mats, good access to public transport and plenty of off street parking.
HistoryAikido Republic was founded originally as personal aikido blog of Daniel James in 2009 with tales of seminars attended and teaching notes from his classes at various dojo. Eventually it grew into a non-partisan aikido site with opinion and the opening of Brisbane Aikido Republic dojo in 2010 (July 28th) as an authorised Aikido Yuishinkai branch dojo. Today the dojo is registered as a non for profit association through the Intoku Aikido Association (July 23 2012). It takes inspiration from Maruyama and William's Sensei's "Aikido without Boundaries" philosophy.
aikido n. A Japanese martial way studying the principle of joining rather than fighting with an opponent. The name is formed from three characters
ai "joining" +ki "energy" + do "way"
The Kanji 'ai' forms the logo for our dojo 'Ai' is interpreted as 'to join'. The ideogram is seen by many as the roof joining a house or my personal favourite: the lid and a pot coming together(described by Will Reed in the celebrated 'Ki a Practical guide for westerners').
Its a simple idea yet very challenging to translate into martial arts where it means we join with the energy and movement of our partner (or would be aggressor). Joining with their energy means neither fighting them nor giving-in to them but finding the space between these two extremes where we don't have to push nor pull to apply technique.
Its a challenging concept and one of the reasons why 'aiki' is a high level concept. For many of the koryu (ancient arts of Japan) first one learned the percussive or striking arts, then the jutsu arts or applying locks and pins before finally arriving at 'aiki' or blending with the opponent.
To successfully do 'aiki' and truly join with our partner we have to give up the idea of applying technique and instead seek to find aiki in the ma-ai (space and time) of our opponent. Their action and reaction to this ultimately leads to what we think of as Aikido technique.
Thus the techniques of Aikido are paradoxically not Aikido at all, rather they are training forms through which we make progress and come to understand and internalise 'aiki'
re·pub·lic n. A group of people working together towards a common goal
How does the notion of a republic fit with the idea of budo? Together as we practice the art of aikido we must do so in the spirit of cooperation and help each other to progress. very much synonymous with the 'Ai' character again.
While classes are led formally by an instructor, in truth the real instructor is each person we work with during practice as their energy and intent show us in a practical sense an understanding of Aiki
It is also true in a wider sense as today we enter a time where there are very few of O'Sensei's (the founder of Aikido) uchideshi (live-in students) remaining.
Whilst in years gone past we have been fortunate to learn from many of them over the years (I have practiced with maybe 5 of them), as the years pass so too will they. As this progresses the lineage of Aikido becomes increasingly diverse as many more Ryuha (or branches of Aikido) emerge.
Like the original students of the founder, each person gaining a measure of mastery in the art has their own ideas and develops Aikido in individual and creative ways. While the quality of what is developed can vary, there is a lot to be learned from many of them.
Following the teaching of Maruyama Sensei (one of O'Sensei's youngest uchideshi) we learn of "Aikido without boundaries" like many rivers all flowing into the great ocean. We can draw upon these ideas to enrich our own practice.