'True karate-do is this; that in daily life one's mind and body be trained and developed in a spirit of humility; and that in critical times, one be devoted utterly to the cause of justice.' - Gichin Funakoshi, Karate-do Kyohan
The major concern in teaching martial arts is helping others. While it is not wrong to make a living from teaching, prestige is nothing without setting a good example. We can not have desirable progress in the 'martial ways' or peace and happiness without mutual respect.
To ensure continued progress in the effectiveness of philosophy and technique of our own arts, we must study our arts diligently while being open to other perspectives. Teachers must set an example for students by also being model students. This level of modesty can take years to cultivate, and is one of the ultimate goals of our training. Also, before we can realize our full potential in teaching others, we must honestly learn our own strengths and weaknesses. Let us look at ourselves in the mirrors of truth and good standards, while chasing the rainbow of perfection.
'The technique of the martial arts is like the universe - there is no limit to knowledge. One must realize no limit to one's performance.' - Hironori Ohtsuka
Most of all, we should be respectful and modest. We must remember to have and give respect as least as much as we get it. It is easy to lose modesty under a pile of well-practiced technique. Yet, without modesty, one has gained nothing from training. We learn the realities of fighting so as to know how to avoid fighting and take the most honorable approach. There are no winners in war - only losers. With this in mind, we must punch and kick not to win or lose, but to learn from each other in martial brotherhood.
'Have no regard for the martial aspects when training, but rather adhere to the way of peace.' - Hironori Ohtsuka
This article is a part of the author's concise guide to karate. Be sure to check out his Johnston Karate Home Page to view the free version of the guide or order a professionally printed copy.