Developing character with self defense

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Martial Arts training can assist in helping one lead a more character driven life. Many professions require adherence, in the form of an oath, to some ethical code or set of moral principles. Yet we still see or read about the actions of people who do not live by the ideals they swore to uphold. Andrew Carnegie once said, “The older I get, the less I listen to what people say and the more I watch what they do.”

We cannot allow that disappointment to undermine our ability to discern right from wrong and propriety from impropriety. The recognition that people are human and sometimes fail the standards they were supposed to follow can be disheartening. It is human nature to say that because someone else “doesn’t follow the rules”, why should I? This kind of moral equivalency, some might argue, is the cause of much confusion and unhappiness.

It is difficult to “teach” ethical behavior. One’s core values must be based on a belief system that guides your attitudes and actions to act or refrain from acting according to commonly accepted moral principles. Ethical behavior often requires the most courage when doing the right thing may cost you more than you would normally be willing to pay.

The 7 Japanese Knightly Virtues included in “Bushido”, “The Warriors’ Code”, are as follows: 1) Gi – Rectitude, 2) Yu – Courage, 3) Jin – Benevolence, 4) Rei – Respect, 5) Makoto – Honesty, 6) Meiyo – Honor, and 7) Chugi – Loyalty.

Next month we will discuss Rectitude – Right Decisions and Right Actions.

Mr. Weber is the chief instructor at the Aikido Academy of Self-Defense located at 16134 North Oracle Road, in Catalina. He has more than 40 years of experience in the Martial Arts and has achieved skills in a variety of disciplines. He also teaches Tai-Chi with classes on Wednesday from 11 a.m. to noon and Saturday from 9 to 10 a.m.

Please call (520) 825-8500 for information regarding these and other programs. If you wish, check out the website at www.AikidoAcademyOfArizona.com.

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