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My Teacher Is So Great!

If my teacher is a 10th degree black belt, what does that make me?

If my teacher is a hanshi, what does that make me?

If my teacher is a great fighter, what does that make me?

If my teacher is a great technician, what does that make me?

If my teacher is a great historian and researcher, what does that make me?

If my teacher is great, that does not make me great. What is does make me is very lucky to have such a fine teacher. It means that I have a teacher who really knows his (or her) Karate, and if I am a good student, I will have a chance to learn.

But many students of great teachers do not become great themselves (you usually don't hear about them). It is up to the student. The teacher became great, in large part, by his own hard work. A great teacher can point you in the right direction and set an excellent example. But the actual progress depends on your effort and diligence. A great teacher cannot make a student great. That simply does not happen.

Even if the great teacher is the father or the grandfather of the student, the student cannot simply ride on great coat tails. Being related to a great teacher might help someone acquire a high position, but not skill. Skill only comes through hard work.

If my teacher is great, I have an excellent opportunity if I will invest in the necessary hard work and training. It also means that I have a lot to live up to. Others will expect me to excel because of my teacher's reputation. In addition, my actions will reflect, positively or negatively, on my teacher. I will always have to be mindful of this.

There was a student. He was coming out of a theater when a mugger jumped him, knocked him to the ground and demanded his wallet. As he handed over the wallet, the student said, "Don't you know that I am the Karate student of a great teacher?"

"No, I didn't know that," replied the mugger. "Too bad you didnt bring him to the movie with you!"

Respectfully,

Charles C. Goodin