The Philosophical Side of Training

February 2003

Volume 5 Issue 2

Aibudo Kanji

faith".  Serenity, which is very much like "calmness" comes from the ability to function automatically and efficiently from knowledge learned in the past.  You  become very comfortable with the tools you have developed, through trial and error, in situations of different complexities.  You develop a serenity through self-confidence in your abilities.


"Progress comes from new knowledge"


     The self-confidence that you know you have, will become even better through continuous training.  The more you train at anything, the better you will become and the greater confidence you will have in yourself.  With dedication in your training, you will eventually reach a point, where the "trip from the beginning to end", will become as one step, where there is no thought required to complete it.


     The statement that "a karateman in training is in karate", is just that.  You cannot be in training in any occupation, if you are not working the occupation.  There are individuals who have either retired from or have quit an occupation such as plumbing, and state that they are plumbers.  No, they were plumbers.  As times change and technology advances, you are only "in training" as long as you are actively "working" within the occupation.  Otherwise, the tools that you developed in the past, become near useless in the future.  You are only as good as the tools you develop along the way.  Mixing the "new tools" with the "old", puts together a very efficient "tool box"!  The old tools become modified and refined, while the new tools become more efficient and effective.  "New tools" in the beginning, while being developed, are very crude and awkward, but through time, become your "new life".


"The Karate philosophy of calmness and confidence is the antithesis

of aggression and inhumanity"


     The above statement also relates to the "Karateman in Training" philosophy.  The longer you train, the calmer you become and the greater your self-confidence.  Aggression and inhumanity fade  in to the "background".  The training for your future, transfers aggression and inhumanity into "history".

"By doing nothing, he is seen.

By his silence, he is heard."


     This is an interesting philosophy.  How can you be seen functioning by not doing anything?  How can you be heard if you don't say anything?

     How many times, when working with a cohort, have you witnessed them thinking about a problem and have said, "I know just what you're thinking"?  How did you know what they were thinking.  It's easy, you have been there yourself.  It takes a fair amount of time in an entity, but the longer you work at something, the easier it becomes to figure out what others are thinking in exactly the same situation.

     In the martial arts, the more senior you become, the more you "radiate" to the juniors.  They don't know what it is, but the radiation, says:  "Don't mess with me"!  "They see what you don't do"!  As time goes on, the seniors don't have to say anything verbally to "speak their thoughts".  The junior's to them, know very well what was said by the silence.


     "A true Karateka reaches

the zenith of training when he can conquer the unyielding

with the yielding. . . .

How can a yielding object conquer

an unyielding object? . . . . .

There is nothing in life more yielding than a whiff of air or a drop of water, but who can withstand the force of a typhoon or a tidal wave?"


     In the beginnings or your martial arts training, you were nothing more than the drop of water or the whiff of air, but as time goes by, the drops of water and the whiffs of air multiply, into the proverbial tidal wave and typhoon.  You didn't become that way overnight, it took time to build and become what you are about to be or have now become.

     What you have to realize though, is that if you discontinue training, the typhoon or tidal wave that was developed will fade into obscurity.  There will never ever be again, even a sampling, of what there was.  Oh sure, you will still have a mental remembering of what there was, but what there was, will have faded, never to return as it was.  You may come back, to the "way", but the way you were will be forever changed.  For better or worse, you will come back different than when you left!

"A Karateman in Training

is in Karate"


     Under this philosophical title, there are six statements.  All with their own lesson to be learned or reflected upon.


"Strength comes from health"


     This is easy to understand, as you are able to relate to it in your everyday life.  You know that if you are home sick, you don't have the strength that you normally would have.  Therefore, going in the other direction, the healthier you are, the stronger you are going to be.  Relating to that, you can then understand, that the stronger you are, the more it's going to take, to "put you down".


"Speed comes from effort"


     You have to look at effort, as the results you have obtained through continuous training.  The more you train, on a regular basis, the faster you become, in a controlled way, in your "natural" reflexes.  Your "natural" reflexes improve through constant training or effort.


"Techniques come from experience"


     Most everyone, except the new beginners in any endeavor, is aware that the longer you work in a specific occupation, the better you become at it.  You develop techniques that become common sense or just plain natural for the job.  The same is for the martial arts, in that the longer you train, the more "tools" you learn to work with and with what you end up having available, the better your techniques become.


"Will power comes from faith"


     It says "will power", but what it amounts to, is courage.  It also relates to "faith", which is nothing more than self-confidence.  The more confident that you become in yourself, through your training, the more "natural" courage you are going to develop.  What may have "held you back", before your martial arts training, ends up becoming just a minor obstacle.


"Serenity comes from old knowledge"


     This relates directly to the previous statement, that "will power comes from

Picture of Shihan