Kyoshi's Technique of the Week

June 5th, 2016

This week's thought is from Sensei Emiliano Mazlen

Yon-Dan Shihan, Boston Chinatown Ueshiro Shorin-Ryu Karate Club

Courtesy as a Technique

Onegai-shimasu Hanshi, Kyoshi, Sensei, Shihan and Fellow Deshi,

Our karate begins and ends with courtesy. The formal portion of every class and workout begins and ends with formal courtesy. The first and last of the Dojo Rules are identical – “Always show courtesy to all.” Our courtesy towards our fellow deshi should always be proper, no matter which deshi, no matter the circumstances on or off the deck, at moments of success and at moments of challenge. Just as we train our bodies to be able to perform effective, reflexive physical action in an emergency, our thoroughgoing courtesy to our fellow deshi develops in us a reflexive courtesy, which is itself a critical technique. The Dojo Rules tell us to show courtesy to all, not just seniors, not just fellow deshi or karateka but everyone. Our reflexive, default reaction of courtesy may well save us serious trouble or worse away from the Dojo and our fellow deshi. If we are cut off in traffic, if someone elbows past us on the subway or if someone speaks to us aggressively on the street, we may avoid a confrontation with a potential opponent of unknown intent and power just by deploying our courtesy.

Domo arigato gozaimasu to all.

Emiliano Mazlen

Yon-Dan

Shihan, Boston Chinatown Ueshiro Shorin-Ryu Karate Club