Freedom Requires Practice
Brandon WilliamsCraig Sensei (and Free Aiki Dojo) have moved to Texas. Feel free to make contact, but classes including Martial Nonviolence in the SF Bay Area are now limited to 12-1 PM at Aikido of Berkeley on the first and third Saturdays, and are taught by Peace Practices instructor, Julian Wilner. Please consider joining Aikido of Berkeley; Kayla Feder Sensei is a world class martial artist. Please visit any of her classes and see for yourself.
If you are interested in continuing Golden Bears Aikido on the Cal campus, feel free to make contact and discuss options, but classes are on hold until new leadership steps up. If you would like to create a Free Aiki Dojo yourself, please keep reading (< click if no text appears below).
If you would like to create a Free Aiki Dojo yourself, the model usually involves building a program within an existing dojo or training community. You will need:
1) A wholly supportive Sensei or the experience and support necessary to teach and promote students of your own
2) A written agreement which establishes ongoing permission for a group/subset of students who answer to a different set of expectations than is customary in martial arts dojos. They may:
- pay what they can, and may also not pay, so that there is no financial barrier
- engage with the training community in their own way, as long as it is physically safe. This means no cultural barriers to training (including subtle disapproval for not paying, not buying a uniform, training sporadically, etc.)
The intention is not to eradicate the traditional dojo environment. Rather it is to increase freedom in aiki practice, so the more traditional students are subject to the stress of training with a subset of less traditional students, and vice versa. The hope is that this will create conflict which must then be facilitated and studied in order to both welcome everyone and ground physical practice in the body and daily choices, so that the resulting new patterns may contribute to Aikido 2 and be carried out of the dojo.