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Aikido is - but it is not
- 18 perspectives on an amazing art

by Lars Landberg


This is the web site that accompanies my book on Aikido published via Lulu.com. You can of course also buy the book from here!

As Lars points out so eloquently, Aikido can be considered as an ‘infinite game’ where there is no final winning or losing but rather an endless path of learning, development and embodiment. In that sense, what allows us to play that game both joyfully and successfully is the mind set we bring to it.

In Japanese culture an essential cornerstone in any learning endeavour is considered to be what is called ‘beginners mind’ (shoshin). But what characterise this state of mind? One important aspect is a mind that embraces questioning in the sense of a fundamental curiosity regarding one’s field of learning and dare I say, by extension, of one’s life.

In this book Lars raises plenty of issues for us to consider and question. And consider them we must if as practitioners we are to make the art our own and Aikido is to find it’s proper place in our western society.

In Japan many of the issues Lars raises are rarely if at all considered. Japanese martial arts culture is old and Aikido there has found its place. Not so for us in the west, or at least not completely. Our current challenge is to stay faithful to the essence of the art and yet adapt it to its new cultural settings. It is not possible to simply transplant the Japanese model to the west without modification. Cultural modification is inevitable so better we are conscious of it and able to participate and guide that process rather than simply let it happen with unforeseen and potentially undesirable consequences.

How successful we are in this process will depend on our ability to question and separate out the wheat from the chaff. Ultimately Aikido is not a Japanese martial art but an art concerning itself with human beings and the age old question of conflict between them. The principles of Aikido both at the physical as well as the relational level are not Japanese principles per se, but universal principles.

Whether a seasoned practitioner or a beginner, this book invites you to consider the art from different perspectives and angles with the intention of stimulating your ‘questioning mind’ and fostering this participation in the integration of Aikido in our lives and societies.

Enjoy and be prepared to be challenged!

Lewis Bernaldo de Quiros
14 June 2022

Review of the book in the TAE Journal can be found here

1 Aikido is Aikido – but it is not
2 Aikido is Budo – but it is not
3 Aikido is self-defence – but it is not
4 Aikido is gradings – but it is not
5 Aikido is difficult – but it is not
6 Aikido is form – but it is not
7 Aikido is physics – but it is not
8 Aikido is three-dimensional – and it is
9 Aikido is teaching – but it is not
10 Aikido is competition – but it is not
11 Aikido is a lifestyle – but it is not
12 Aikido is for all – but it is not
13 Aikido is for this day and age – and it is
14 Aikido is for kids – and it is
15 Aikido is about money – but it is not
16 Aikido is political – but it is not
17 Aikido is young – but it is not
18 Aikido can be learned from a book – but it can not

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Lulu.com (paperback) (preferred)

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Paperback: 68 pages
Publisher: Lulu.com
1 edition (2022)
Language: English
ISBN-13: 9781471785085


28 July 2023
Book now available on all e-book platforms and in print!

3 July 2022
E-book (pdf version) now published! You can buy it here!

27 June 2022
Book now published! You can buy it here!

June 2022
Book almost ready to be published!