Level of understanding (the first half)

A Short Instruction:

The purpose of this article is to practice and validate the Ki principles (Mind moves body) which are the foundation of Ki-Aikido in your daily life. Therefore, it has no meaning if you just read it without practicing it.

The fundamental method of mastering anything is practice. However, not just practice, but it is also important to validate how one has changed as a result of the practice.

It is easy to lose what you have learned without practice. On the other hand, you will never lose what you have learned through practice and validation. Therefore, please read, practice, and validate the contents of my article at least a month.

Level of understanding (the first half)

We often use the phrase “yes, I think I understood”, in our daily life. But it is questionable whether we really understand or not.

In fact, there are different levels of understanding.

For instance, we think we “understand” after receiving an explanation for something. The lowest level of understanding is merely that of “I think or I feel Iike I understand”. When we receive an explanation about something, we feel we understand, however, with only this level of understanding, we actually cannot perform as told. If we are satisfied with this level of understanding, we can master nothing. In fact, many people think they understood completely even though they have only reached this lowest level of understanding.

A higher level of understanding than that above, is when “we can communicate correctly to others what was explained to us”.

Even though we think we understand, we cannot communicate it to others correctly unless our understanding is clearly resolved. In order to communicate our understanding correctly, it is necessary to sort out the knowledge obtained and be sure that we clearly understand the meaning.

When I instruct in a seminar, I not only explain, but also make the time when students can communicate to each other what they have been taught. Unless they are specially trained, the beginners can communicate correctly only about 30 percent of what they have learned to the other students. Thus, in fact, if the instructor only explains by word of mouth, students can understand only a part of what the instructor says, not all. It is an illusion that “if we explain to the other person, there will be a complete understanding”.

By continuing with the training of correctly communicating to each other what students have learned, most will be able to master what they have learned.

In order to reach a higher level of understanding than merely that of “I think I understand”, (even though you believe “you have understood”), it is important to check whether you can communicate your understanding correctly to others, or not.

When we listen to the others, there may be a creative method of “listening while trying to imagine a merging of ideas in the mind”, which is worth doing. However, a more important method is to practice sending our Ki (attention) to the speaker properly and to understand what he says correctly. Only after we master this basic skill of listening and understanding, does our level of listening and understanding become higher.

These days, we hear the opinion that “it is necessary to respect person’s individuality”. But if we just say “respecting individuality is important” without considering the basic skill of understanding, we can only “understand from our own point of view”.

The basic training of understanding correctly what other people say is one of the most important things today.

There is an even higher level of understanding, but I will end for now with your practice and validation for this month. Next time, I will show you the rest in “Level of understanding (The second half)”.

[Point of practice]

  Listen in a way that you can communicate what you are told to the others correctly.

[Point of validation]

Compare the levels of understanding between the state after listening as above practice and the state that “you think you understood”.