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B.Sitton
1st August 2010, 01:45
Im wondering how common it is for the instructor to teach karate as a way of life, a way to be...you know, the more traditional ideas beyond martial arts. I seem to just be doing kata and practices kicking and punching. Im not sure that I will ever learn anything except how to fight and train good. I would really like to know about meditation or any kind of mental aspect of karate that Im not aware of. So far its jsut simply striking and kata. Dont get me wrong though, my instructor is very good and really takes time to help me. Hes more interested in me getting good than with money. He doesnt brag, etc etc...he shows zero signs of a bad instructor. Im wondering if these things will ever come? Will I have to do this on my own? Has it just been completely whiped out of karate?? Sorry if my question(s) is scattered, I just really want to be the best karateka that I can be. I want mental strengthand calmness as well as physical. And Ive been here for only a month now, so maybe this is why?

Joseph Svinth
1st August 2010, 02:24
Martial arts is not like in the movies. It doesn't come with magic powers, or get you dates with the hot chicks, and it takes time. It just is.

What to work on? Breathe. Center. Relax.

Get that down, and you're most of the way there.

Really.

Tripitaka of AA
1st August 2010, 07:15
Wise words from Joe.
The movies paint a picture in big brush strokes. The reality is less obvious, less dramatic and takes way more than an hour and a half. That doesn't mean it won't come, just that you may not notice it until it's already there.

There are Arts that place more emphasis on spiritual development, some that place more emphasis on physical. There are some that place way too much emphasis on selling you a dream.

It is good that you seek to develop more than just the physical side, but follow Joe's advice to find that way. He knows what he's talking about.

Prince Loeffler
1st August 2010, 18:02
get you dates with the hot chicks

Really.

I strongly disagree Svinth Sensei !.....:D

Seriously, my personal thought about what I have learned in the martial arts in my personal and professional growth is having the proper attitude about life's obstacles.

I worked for a law firm for the past 23 years and everyday is an epic battle. Karate gave me the proper mindset to at least maintain my sanity at the end of the day. My mantra at work are: Mind, Heart and Balls !

Joseph Svinth
1st August 2010, 20:05
Prince --

Money gets you the dates with the hot chicks.

Serious interest in anything else is seen as, well, unnecessary distraction.

Duke Meade
1st August 2010, 21:34
Hello Sitton San,

As I read your post it reminded me of my own personal journey studying Bujutsu in Japan. As a foriegner, there were many things I did not not understand at first, but bit by bit I came to understand so many wonderful things.
You have just started, so of course you are not understanding much. Most new students bow in only because they are told to do so , not because they feel to do so. The Dojo does not mean much to them,why would it ?, because someone told them so, right?
I use to think so too, but after much training coming to the Dojo, my charachter changed, I was stronger, more balanced, very focused, timely, spirited,etc.. Then I finally realised why the Dojo and Sensei had become so important too me.

So, at this stage in your training , just stay focused on your Kata and only on your kata and lets see how you will be feeling after 6 months to a year from now.
The things that you are looking for will come in time , and it will come ,but it must be developed through the kata first.

Put your heart into your Kata, strive to make the best kata ever! Be the best partner you can be for the other student. Fight hard!

As my Sensei put it , the way 道, is like your eyebrow, it is always there, you just can not see it!


Sincerely,

Duke Meade

Duanew
2nd August 2010, 00:24
To add to the others. You will learn more by watching and doing than by talking. Watch your sensei and your seniors-they should be your map on the route you want to take.

Duane

B.Sitton
2nd August 2010, 04:51
Hello Sitton San,

As I read your post it reminded me of my own personal journey studying Bujutsu in Japan. As a foriegner, there were many things I did not not understand at first, but bit by bit I came to understand so many wonderful things.
You have just started, so of course you are not understanding much. Most new students bow in only because they are told to do so , not because they feel to do so. The Dojo does not mean much to them,why would it ?, because someone told them so, right?
I use to think so too, but after much training coming to the Dojo, my charachter changed, I was stronger, more balanced, very focused, timely, spirited,etc.. Then I finally realised why the Dojo and Sensei had become so important too me.

So, at this stage in your training , just stay focused on your Kata and only on your kata and lets see how you will be feeling after 6 months to a year from now.
The things that you are looking for will come in time , and it will come ,but it must be developed through the kata first.

Put your heart into your Kata, strive to make the best kata ever! Be the best partner you can be for the other student. Fight hard!

As my Sensei put it , the way 道, is like your eyebrow, it is always there, you just can not see it!


Sincerely,

Duke Meade

Thank you! That is a great few at it all, and also takes away the fantasy aspect. It really helps me understand everything a little better. I wanna say thank you to the others that replied as well! And by the way...I dont care about getting hot chicks...Im married and and love it :)

andy.m
2nd August 2010, 16:34
Hello Mr Sitton.
One thing you don't mention is, how long you have been training. If it's months rather than years, this may be the answer in itself. Besides, as Mr Meade has pointed out, Jutsu lead to Do. The benefits of what we call Do were found to be side effects of the practise of Jutsu. Do methods 'simple' focus on the deliberate creation of this effect. Enjoy the training. Andy

kmosk
2nd August 2010, 17:10
Hi Everyone,

My response is solely based upon the first post.

Karate initially is based kata kumite and strenthening the body. I do not know how far along into your training you have gotten in your training. Months? Years? Decades?

Kata initially helps you learn fighting techniques. Later as it is perfected it is moving meditation. There are two types of meditation moving and seated. You are meditating while practicing kata you may not realize it.

Some karate has moved away from the mental aspects or mystical side of martial arts. I am still a firm believer. My teacher also does not go deeply into the mystical aspects of karate anymore. I still practice what was taught to me many years ago.

http://seinenkai.com/ (click on miyagi's name and it will give the list)

If you seach the above site you will find an article written by Chojun Miyagi.It is the article which talks about breathing in and breathing out. He refers to Sanchin kata. He advises to concentrate on certain areas of the body while practicing the kata. He refers to the clenching of the but cheeks. He also talks about the Tandem, the top of the head and the area almost between your eyes.

Not coincidentally these areas all correspond with chakras which delves into the religious or mystical aspects of karate.

I do not want to keep boring people. There are many karate and martial arts masters who know and teach these things to their students (usually at the upper levels of training). Sometimes these teachers are hard to find. Your teacher probably has knowlege of these things but will only teach you at a certain point in your training.

Kevin Moskie
Okinawan GoJu Ryu

cxt
2nd August 2010, 17:53
If you have only been at it a month....relax give it some time. A month is no-where enough time to really get the hang of anything.

B.Sitton
3rd August 2010, 03:04
Wow! Thank you all VERY MUCH! Im really happy that I got so many great answers. Should I ask my instructor about these things? How should I refer to them so that it doesnt sound like Im asking for something out of touch with reality? I think that these things can give you the psychological structure needed to be mentally strong and with a great spirit. I have always had a fear of losing, a want to win, a fear of embarrasment, a big fear of tall people, little faith in my skills and abilities, and I seem to be a bad loser sometimes....I dont want these things! I want to be calm, humble, confident in myself, have positive thoughts, etc etc. Yea I know, that sounds like a drunk guy spilling his thoughts haha, but I think its needed to see exaclty what Im looking for. And yea, Ive been in it for a month, though I had martial arts experience before, and it was all physical...the only thing I gained from it was feeling confident that I could win against people my size, which I dont think is a good way to look at things.
Thanks guys!

ps...my style is Kenyu-Ryu, and as I said in the first post, Ive been doing to for 1 month

kmosk
4th August 2010, 20:41
Hi Mr Sitton,

With only a month with an instructor he is still wondering if you are a flash in the pan. Someone who goes from dojo to dojo trying to learn all of their secrets in a couple of months and then on to the next dojo. We used to call them dojo whores.

Once your instructor is confident you are going to be with him for the long haul he will be more apt to give you things you are searching for. If you stay for a couple of years you will notice how many people come and go. Any Seasoned martial artist will feel you out before he can consider you his student. This is totally normal.

My Sensei did not even know my name untill I was brown belt.

Kevin Moskie
Okinawan GOJU Ryu

Tripitaka of AA
5th August 2010, 11:02
My Sensei did not even know my name untill I was brown belt.

Kevin Moskie
Okinawan GOJU Ryu
:D :laugh:


This thread is producing some classic responses. Distilled from years of training, years of watching and listening, years of sweating and straining and bruising and swelling and bandaging and ice and washing out stinky dogi.

The simplicity of the answers is your guide. The people who have given answers, have tried to give it straight, with emphasis on the training itself. The words and the philosophy and the "spiritual"... are in the training.