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Doug Aoki
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Why You Should Always Compare Yourself to Others
Shimabukuro Zenpō It is a truism of the age that you should never compare
yourself to others. That truism has been taken up eagerly by modern martial
arts, often articulate as you should only measure yourself today against what
you could do yesterday. Both ...

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In his 2008 book, Outliers , Malcolm Gladwell attracted a great deal of attention with
his 10,000 Hour Rule, which asserted, based on research by psychologist Anders
Ericsson, that it takes 10,000 hours of deliberate practice to achieve mastery in
a field. ...

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The Extraordinary and the Ordinary
Iha Koshin pointing out the names of his father and brother at the Cornerstone to Peace memorial Deadly
Arts: Karate (2003) is an
episode in a documentary series by Canadian filmmaker, Josée Normandeau. It was
shot on Okinawa. Among the sensei featured is t...

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Change, humility, and openness
Chibana Chōsin Karate gives you the means by which change takes place. George Mattson Karate is not about staying the same; it’s about changing yourself:
sharpening your technique and getting faster, stronger, and more supple. It’s
about becoming a better f...

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The sword that gives life
The Yagyū Shinkage Ryū
is one of the most honored and venerable systems of classical swordsmanship in
Japan, with a history that stretches back 450 years. Besides its formidable
technique, it is famous for an adage: katsujinken
satsujinken 活人剣 殺人剣. The lite...

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You never get good at karate
The late aikidō sensei
Furuya Kenshō once wrote a piece he called, “You never get good at the martial
arts.” It was an attention-grabbing title, one that perplexed many readers.
When I told an acquaintance of mine about it, she said it was so discouraging.

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Karatedō is the opposite of self-defense
Upon entering the temple gate, I bowed with anticipation before soliciting the instructions of the master. “I would like to join your class,” I stated, after being introduced by one of the senior black belts. “For what reason do you come?” the master asked....

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Don’t set goals
Western popular culture adores goal-setting. It enjoys the same presumed and unquestioned virtue as personal growth; here, one of the best things you can say about people you admire is that they’re goal-oriented and never stop working until they achieve the...

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A person
The Japanese word for “person”
is hito. It is written as the kanji illustrated
above. When I did my doctorate, I studied the psychoanalytic theory of Jacques
Lacan. He argued for the importance of the material signifier—that is, the concrete marks
on the pa...

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Great things are not taught by blancmange methods. Robertson Davies A good karatedō class is hard. It is demanding. You punch while trying not to slip in puddles of your own sweat. Fatigue and lactic acid make the muscles burn. Breaking through your physica...
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