Monday, November 5, 2012

20 Precepts, part 3 (No limit)

The founder of Shotokan karate, Gichin Funakoshi, created the “20 precepts of karate-do.”  This is a list of 20 different philosophies, some specific and others general.  For this series, I will be looking at the ones that can apply to taiko and taiko training.

Today’s precept: “It will take your entire life to learn karate.  There is no limit.”

This one is kind of a no-brainer, but still worth talking about.   I’ve talked in the past about people who stop trying to learn and sort of settle on “good enough.”  It’s not fair to judge everyone who thinks this way, because some people might feel there are higher priorities (life, family, work, etc.) or have some other limitations (money, physical, etc.)  But for the most part, if someone has the ability and decides to “settle”, I just have to ask, “why”?

Ultimately, I think there are two answers: fear and/or laziness.  It’s scary trying to learn new things and putting yourself in a position where you don’t have the answers.  It’s also so much easier to just take on small details but never push yourself in a significant manner.

There have definitely been times in my training that I’ve just wanted to take it easy for a while.  And there are definitely times when it’s scary having someone teach me that knows way more than I do, who can point all my errors out.  But damn it’s awesome to get past my own ego and get better at things.  It’s encouraging and empowering.

Don’t ever think you know all you need to know.  Don’t ever think that you “know enough”.  You don’t.  Don't be a cautionary tale to people around you, be an inspiration!

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