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PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2005 1:21 pm 
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There's been several many threads through the years about who is arrogant, who is humble, who thinks they're humble but acts arrogant, obsequious humility, etc.

There seems to be an expectation in the traditional martial arts that a senior teacher or master instructor should be a humble and kind person....all the time.

Whether people buy into this idea or reject it whole hog they are still measured by this standard.

Sometimes students become...enraptured...with the mystique of the idea of a "sensei" and are not willing to perceive that person as human with human flaws. Or once they finally do see their teacher as a person they feel betrayed, misled, and conned.

Others go to the other extreme and make sure to point out any and every flaw in any and every senior instructor (either publicly or to themselves) to the extent that even basic respect for another person flies out the window.

Why does it seem so hard to tread the middle ground as people once we don belt and gi? Why are we so disappointed when a great practitioner is not a great teacher, when a great teacher is not a great person, or why are we so dissrepectful if a good person is not a good practitioner? And why do we think martial artists would lie less often than everyone else?

Why do our values seem placed under such a microsope simply because we train?

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2005 1:42 pm 
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Quote:
Why does it seem so hard to tread the middle ground as people once we don belt and gi? Why are we so disappointed when a great practitioner is not a great teacher, when a great teacher is not a great person, or why are we so dissrepectful if a good person is not a good practitioner? And why do we think martial artists would lie less often than everyone else?
One reason is because people wear belts and gi and are given a set of social rules to follow based on the color of the belt. Guys in front with black belts are more dedicated, higher achievers, etc...

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Last edited by MikeK on Tue Nov 01, 2005 2:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2005 2:46 pm 
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I think Mike has hit the nail on the head. We are taught, as karate newbies, that there is a particular etiquett for the dojo involving a social hierarchy based upon belt rank and seniority. We are taught to bow respectfully to those with the darker belts and more experience in the arts and head their words. Because of this we expect/demand that the people asking for this respect prove that they have earned it.

Would Catholics venerate the Pope if he was known to be a compulsive liar? Of course not. Do we expect the people we work for (CEOs, VPs, etc.) to treat us with dignity and follow the same ethical and moral standard they hold their employees to? Absolutely.

This is going to sound lame (especially if you have seen the SpiderMan movies where they abuse this line to death), but "with great power, comes great responsiblity." We do and SHOULD hold those with power to a higher standard. Be it your boss, your sensei, the captain of your team, your political leaders, or your spiritual leaders.

That said - "to err is human." But a leader/teacher who does make a mistake can keep the respect of their followers/students by owning up to it and apologizing. In other words, I don't expect my social, political, and business leaders to be perfect human beings, but they better show that they are worthy of the respect I give them.



cheers,

steve


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2005 3:40 pm 
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But in martial arts we hand out that respect like Halloween candy.

Why should we turn such power over to someone in the first place? If I pay someone to instruct me then that is their primary responsibilty. They can be a drunk, womanizer or a Scienctologists for all I care as long as it does not interfere with their being a good teacher and upholding their end of the contract. It's when we expect these additional attributes that everyone gets into trouble.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2005 9:31 pm 
I think it`s because we give the mucky mucks to much trust .

They say this is the way , and this is authentic , and this is a time honoured proven tradition .

htye promise results ....

then you give em 10-20 years of training life , and the truth comes out they dont really know .

I never understood the need to be so dishonest .

next time you see your head instructor ask him sme serious questions about what your katas or and how it helps in violence .

ask him how the stuffs been tested and when it started being taught ?

develop some critical thinking and listen hard to the answers and backpeddaling .

Nice people feeding the same lies they were fed , so they come to beleive it`s not actually lying .


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2005 9:39 pm 
Stryke wrote:
then you give em 10-20 years of training life , and the truth comes out they dont really know .


Yeah, and the harder truth is NEITHER DO I! And one wonders why these Pied Pipers don't get any respect?

PUHLEEASE! Get a shave will ya? :twisted:


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2005 9:40 pm 
oh damn... I wasn't supposed to post in regular forums... ok, "the experiment" starts on Friday. Ok Mike? :D


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2005 9:47 pm 
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This is just too much fun not to comment on... :lol:

Oh man, I could tell you stories...

It was Charles Barkley who said he wasn't a role model. But it was my Goju/aikido/green beret instructor turned Seventh Day Adventist who reminded me that - whether I liked it or not - people would watch my actions and copy them. He is right.

There is a responsibility to being a leader.

But one thing I've discovered over time is that there are all kinds of high ranking people. There are the Miyagis out there (a fictional character, but very much the Tomoyose or Thompson mold) who know plenty if you are humble and patient enough to ask. Often people feel they have grown out of such instructors, only to come back and realize that a lot of what such people told them in very concise ways was really true. Then there is this genre of instructor who has SERIOUS insecurity problems, but overachieves partly through that insecurity. Then there are those with the big egos, and ego certainly can come in handy when it comes time to step up to the plate and execute. The insecure and the egotistical make a lot of waves in the martial community.

They are all human. But it seems that when you put such people on a pedestal - whether they asked to be there or not - they become more human than ever.

I very much am influenced by my academic training and long years in a university community. It has its plusses and minuses. One big plus is I believe I get people to question and think for themselves. One big minus is that occasionally certain individuals question EVERYTHING and EVERYONE - to a fault. There is an emotional intelligence that IMO must go along with the intellectual and physical intelligence. Sadly I think this is lacking in Western martial arts. Marcus I know you disagree with me on the need for that but... that's what I believe, brother. 8)

I personally am thankful for GEM for giving me my "space" to be myself and to follow my passions. He knows how to rag on me when I need it. And he often deserves more than he gets from those who benefit from all the subtle things he has accomplished for our benefit. I believe it's partly the job of a community to see that things are done right by such a leader, but being too legalistic about it misses the point. I think we all should know better.

- Bill


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2005 9:56 pm 
But Bill , the reason your such a mucky muck is youve been around ....

and i`m glad Uechi provides you whatever answers in a row you need .

the fact is when your trying to explain something you go all over the place to provide the answers , many styles , many experiences .

You never got it , and I`d argue wouldnt of got it , following along bllindly with your emotional intelligence :)

I`ll leave it at that cause real honesty isnt even for tough issues but the dark room .

And I feel my welcome on the forums running out fast .

the fact is i dont know but I have some ideas , lets explore this ....

thats the kinda teacher we all deserve .

and this isnt about George or the IUKF but martial arts in general

George is by far one of the most openminded folks out there , and has a difficult job .

I`d never take on such a position .


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2005 9:59 pm 
oh yeah Tony ... fridays good for me mate ;)


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2005 10:09 pm 
We should discuss it further in the turlet.... 8)


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2005 11:10 pm 
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Quote:
There is an emotional intelligence that IMO must go along with the intellectual and physical intelligence. Sadly I think this is lacking in Western martial arts.
Bill, Can you give an example of emotional intelligence and why you think it's missing from Western martial arts? :?

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2005 11:19 pm 
good luck Mike , is more inferior westerners cant get the secrets of karate crap .

But weve about defined my emotional intelligence today 8)

My slant is weterners lack critical thinking , we sure are an inferior breed eh !!


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2005 11:21 pm 
your not a westerner, your a southerner, and you are inferior you cook like a pohm! :lol:


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 02, 2005 12:00 am 
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Well thanks guys, but I'm actually a Damn Yankee Carpetbagger from Longisland. And my wife won't let me cook for fear that I'd make the kids sick. :lol:

If it was coming from someone besides Bill I'd tend to agree Marcus, but I'll let Bill explain what he meant. 8)

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