Self-Defense: Developing Character VI

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Steve Weber

“The word of a Samurai was a sufficient guarantee for the truthfulness of an assertion.” This leads us to discuss the fifth virtue of bushido, Honesty. To tell a lie was thought to be cowardly. In western culture a Knight swore an oath to be upright and tell the truth even if it meant their death. Interestingly enough, most Samurai felt that their word carried such weight that no oath was or should have been necessary.

Even today we use euphemisms like “Honesty is the best policy.” But how many of us constantly lament the fact that in so many areas of our life, we lack trust in people, businesses, corporations, institutions, and certainly politics. And I must admit that under certain circumstances, especially where a person’s feeling can be unnecessarily hurt, tact and discretion would be a wiser course of action.

No sane male would ever want to answer the question, “Do I look fat in this dress?” One comic suggested that the only proper response would be to immediately fall to the floor and feign a heart attack. Humor aside, it would be refreshing to be able to rely on a person’s character and be assured of the truthfulness in their dealings with others.

Veracity, Integrity, and Promise-Keeping must be taught – by someone, or why be surprised when we often find it missing. When I taught Police Cadets, I reminded them that a truth hidden or omitted was a lie.

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 45 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.AikidoAcademy OfArizona.com.

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