Schools of martial arts often offer a self-improvement philosophy in addition to a technical competence level. When viewed from a philosophical perspective, the philosophy, not the technical talent, should impact the daily work of a practitioner.
Karate’s traditional philosophy, or at least its traditional dojo-Kun philosophy, is called martial arts philosophy. A martial arts ethics guide, often called the “Student Creed” in English, “Dojo-Kun” is a five-point ethical code of conduct. The following is a common translation of the traditional ethics of karate:
To keep you in character perfection, adhere to the path of truth, cultivate an entrepreneurial spirit, and adhere to etiquette principles To keep you safe from rash bravery.
Many traditional ethics in karate, schools recite these precepts in Japanese at the start and end of class, while some schools chant them in English. Some schools choose to put their principles on the dojo wall rather than chant, while others establish a student creed.
Although I cannot tell you if life is good or bad, you should consider whether the school’s basic ideas correspond with your values and moral ethics when picking a martial arts school. After all, when you start karate, you begin your journey with a very emotional experience. Due to contradictions between your morals and martial arts, you are likely to experience “Dim Mak” (Death Touch) from the start.
Dojo-precepts Kun’s can serve as a straightforward template for leading a virtuous life, attaining your full potential in everything you do, and being a good citizen. Your values and ethical standards should determine whether or not this philosophy works for you.
Almost everyone can personally relate to the five basic karate ethics; yet, some people do not respect martial arts philosophical concepts and may attend your classes for entirely different reasons, such as self-defence or general health and fitness.
As the saying goes, “every man for himself” seems apt here. We must discover our way based on our particular background and criteria, as we must with so many things in life.
In essence, there are a variety of ways that we can achieve awareness of ourselves and our broader surroundings. Through their ability to develop power, timing, speed, tension, energy, harmony, and relaxation, martial arts provide a good foundation for beginning to understand yourself and others. It’s only the beginning of what may turn out to be an exciting and profitable journey.
Best wishes and success in your karate adventure.