September 2009 International Newsletter competition results:

Thank you to all of those members who entered our 2009 September competition!

Entrants were challenged to a 200 word or less, essay on ‘What is the significance of the word ‘DO’ and why should it be included with the word Karate?’

I would like to congratulate IOGKF USA instructor, Sensei Jeffery Mann, on winning this competition. Sensei Jeffery will receive a copy of the 2008 Okinawan World Budosai 2 Disc commemorative DVD set! The winning entry can be viewed below:

What is the significance of the word ‘DO’ and why should it be included with the word Karate?

The Significance of Do

Taking a look at the practice of karate around the world today, one sees considerable focus on either competition or self-defense.  These are, of course, important elements in a complete study of the discipline.  What they have in common is the goal of overcoming one’s opponent.  This is, of course, where martial arts began, developing the skill to defeat one’s enemies.  However, the histories of Japan and Okinawa show an evolution in the understanding of martial arts.  Martial techniques became a vehicle for self-cultivation.  What was conveyed by generations of teachers was not simply the fighting techniques of their disciplines, but a way of life, Do.  The true Do is a path of growing maturity wherein one learns to be at peace with self and neighbor.  We come to understand that training to fight and fostering peace are not at odds.  When teachers and students pay attention to their physical, mental, moral, and spiritual development through the austere discipline of karate-do, they may contribute to solutions to our societies’ ills.  When we focus our energies toward overcoming ourselves, rather than others, then we are traveling the Way that teachers in our lineage have always desired for us.

Jeffery K Mann

Susquehanna Goju-ryu Karate-Do Club