Reading “The Brothers Karamazov” one of the characters tells that he is responsible for the entire world and if everyone acted in this way there would be Heaven on Earth. While standing on the balcony, looking out on trees near me, I was also thinking of an episode of Stargate SG-1. The group headed through the circle and out onto a distant world. They are the heroes of the story and as such they generaly don’t go around picking fights. Yet they do enter the new worlds with guns ready. These two thoughts danced around each other and I thought of Aikido. Likewise I recall a bumpersticker I see on a mini-van around here. It says simply “you cannot plan for peace while preparing for war”. This is one of those cute little sayings that are tacked onto the walls of the mind as truth. I believe it to be baseless. This is because I do not for a second believe that it is likely everyone acts in the best interest of the whole world. It is like at a football game, it is third down, and the defense is standing on field waving their arms getting the crowd up to cheer. Everyone yells and screams as loud as they can. Or do they? No. Not everyone cheers and the louder the crowd cheers the more a single person feels that he doesn’t need to yell. But what about fighting? To continue the analogy, everyone is having a good time, some cheer, some don’t, but some guys are drunk and kick around the drinks of some of the peaceful spectators. The reason? Stupidity, ignorance, in-breeding, the moon, who knows. Yet one person was watching, one person was ready to grapple the lead guy and pin him with a simple arm lock should he do what his face betrayed to be his thoughts (pour his beer on those in front of him). I had positioned myself a mere 2 feet behind him and waited for the start of the tell-tale movement. He didn’t do it. I got a lookover before he left to another area.
World peace is a great goal to strive for. Dialogue is better than war. It would be great if the military were not needed. Yet just as Aikido warrior is at peace with the universe and strives to live in harmony, he is ready to balance the actions of those with less restraint. Just because one is opposed to violence does not mean that one should not be knowledgeable and capable of inflicting it. Because not everyone yells at a football game.