Still More Judo Quotes


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Tando -- Search for the Way
Tando (Search for the Way) by Jigoro Kano
  • Stillness in Movement by Jusan (no matter how fast the movement is it must emanate from a calm and quite core)
  • clear.gifJigoro Kano's Five Principles of Judo (from Budo Secrets by John Stevens):
    1. Carefully observe oneself and one's situation, carefully observe others, and carefully observe one's environment,
    2. Seize the initiative in whatever you undertake,
    3. Consider fully, act decisively,
    4. Know when to stop,
    5. Keep to the middle.
  • clear.gifAny trace of conscious thought destroys your equilibrium, and a sharp opponent will seize on that opening in an instant. Thought obstructs nature and hinders true function. Do not think, do not act; follow the movements of nature, and self will disappear. Without a self there will be no one to oppose you in Heaven and Earth.
    Neko no Myojutsu
  • clear.gifAs soon as there is the slightest conscious thought, however, contrivance and willfulness appear, and that separates you from the natural Way. You see yourself and others as separate entities, as opponents. If you ask me what technique I employ, the answer is mushin (no-mind). Mushin is to act in accordance with nature, nothing else.
    Neko no Myojutsu
  • clear.gifIf someone asked me what a human being ought to devote the maximum of his time to, I would answer, "Training." Train more than you sleep.
    Masutatsu Oyama
  • clear.gifI know not how to defeat others; I only know how to win over myself.
    Yagyu Munenori
  • clear.gifAlways present on the battlefield of life, ready to meet any challenge.
    personal motto of Hakudo Nakayama, the father of modern iaido
  • clear.gifAvoid the "Three Nuns" approach to Judo practice: Nun yesterday, Nun today and Nun tomorrow.
  • clear.gifJudo, as a combative art, or a means of mental and physical training, or of moral and spiritual education, fundamentally evolves on the principle of balance, as do all things in the universe. Duality is the ordered state, and providential arrangement for animation and progress – Life. Life is action – action to attain the balanced state, or unity of opposites – a state of non-action. As far as man is concerned, the value and satisfaction of life are derived from that striving for unity with nature and God. So it is with Judo. In action, balance must be retained: yet to achieve an object, one must run the risk of losing it. In this enigma of the natural law, Judo finds its life as a sport and combative art.
    Gunji Koizumi
  • clear.gifUnder the circumstances of contest or combat, to judge clearly, and to command quick action, one must have calm mental balance. This mental balance depends, in turn, on the spiritual balance, or a clear conscience. Thus it will be seen that the study of Judo does not remain solely on the physical plane; also, despite the drastic nature of its objectives, Judo is not prone to be submissive to the influence of an evil power. In fact, the maxim of Judo is: "Least used: best served."
    Gunji Koizumi
  • clear.gifJudo teaches us training. You have to train, but you have to be spontaneous. If you start being spontaneous without training, your bad habits will get worse and worse... Now the purpose of Judo technique is to show you this and enable you to master what has been learnt in the past - and then to become spontaneous and free. You have to train and then you have to jump beyond the training.
    Trevor Leggett, The Dragon Mask
Kokoro (heart)
Kokoro (heart, center, or core) by D. T. Suzuki
clear.gifO-me-dame de shinde koi (with wide open eyes come and die). This dying means give up the thoughts on which we rely. Give up the things we hold on to and walk forward with wide open eyes. These are some of the things that Judo is meant to give us - and can give us if we practise in that way.
Trevor Leggett, The Dragon Mask Plum Blossoms Open Because of the Frost and Snow by Hakudo Nakayamaclear.gif"Plum Blossoms Open Because of the Frost and Snow" by Hakudo Nakayama (right). Lovely plum flowers bloom under the harshest conditions. Adversity does not cause a budo practitioner to wither; it helps him or her to flourish.
Budo Secrets by John Stevens clear.gifI have been asked by people of various sections as to the wisdom and possibility of Judo being introduced with other games and sports at the Olympic Games. My view on the matter, at present, is rather passive. If it be the desire of other member countries, I have no objection. But I do not feel inclined to take any initiative. For one thing, Judo in reality is not a mere sport or game. I regard it as a principle of life, art and science. In fact, it is a means for personal cultural attainment. Only one of the forms of Judo training, so-called randori or free practice can be classed as a form of sport. Certainly, to some extent, the same may be said of boxing and fencing, but today they are practiced and conducted as sports. Then the Olympic Games are so strongly flavored with nationalism that it is possible to be influenced by it and to develop "Contest Judo", a retrograde form as ju-jitsu was before the Kodokan was founded.
Judo should be free as art and science from any external influences, political, national, racial, and financial or any other organized interest. And all things connected with it should be directed to its ultimate object, the "Benefit of Humanity". Human sacrifice is a matter of ancient history.
Another point is the meaning of professionalism. With Judo, we have no professionals in the same sense as other sports. No one is allowed to take part in public entertainment for personal gain. Teachers certainly receive remuneration for their services, but that is in no way degrading. The professional is held in high regard like the officers of a religious organization or a professor in the educational world. Judo itself is held by us all in a position at the high altar. To reconcile this point of view with the Western idea is difficult. Success or a satisfactory result of joining the Olympic Games would much depend on the degree of understanding of Judo by the other participating countries.
Jigoro Kano in a 1936 conversation with Gunji Koizumi (Budokwai Bulletin, April 1947) clear.gifOnce when Kyuzo Mifune visited a karate dojo, he was shown a demonstration of tile-breaking by one of the karate men. After the karate man had smashed a number of tiles piled on top of each other, he asked Mifune, "Can a Judo man do this?"
"Yes, it is very easy," Mifune replied.
"Is that so? Can we see what kind of technique a Judo man uses?" the karate man challenged.
"Of course. Please set up the tiles. I'll be back in a minute," Mifune instructed.
Mifune returned with a hammer he had brought along in his bag.
"You are not going to use that to break the tiles, are you?" the karate man protested.
"Yes. I told you it was easy. Efficient use of energy is a key principle of Judo."
Budo Secrets by John Stevens clear.gifJoe Hyams relates an incident that occured between him and Ed Parker. Hyams, an inexperienced student, was trying to defeat his sparring partner with tricky, clever moves, and getting nowhere. Later, Parker took Hyams aside, drew a line on the floor with chalk, and asked Hyams how to make the line shorter. Hyams offered several suggestions that included cutting or erasing the line. Then Parker drew a second line on the floor that was longer than the first. He asked if the original line did not now look shorter. Parker commented: "It is always better to extend your own line or knowledge than to try to cut your opponent's line." Hyams applied the lesson to his tennis game as well as his martial arts, and commented "I realized I had to play to my best ability rather than trying to worsen my opponent's play. Keeping Parker's advice in mind, my game soon improved." clear.gifWhat I was given, I made better.
What I made better, I then improved.
What I improved, I now strive to perfect. clear.gifIt's better to fall flat on your face, than lean over too far backwards. clear.gifTeaching is not gate-shutting but gate-opening, yet still the dull or the scared or the lame calf does not walk out into the open field. All this does not imply the popular sentimental corollary that teachers should never be strict, demanding, peremptory or uncondoning. It is often the hard taskmaster who alone succeeds in instilling mistrust of primrose paths. The father may enlarge the child's freedom of movement by refusing to hold his hand, and the boxing instructor or the philosophy tutor may enlarge his pupil's powers of defence and attack by hitting him hard and often. It is not the chocolates and the sponge-cakes that strengthen the child's jaw muscles. They have other virtues, but not this one. clear.gifA man who is afraid yet gives it all he's got has more courage than the man who fears nothing. clear.gifInjuries to the knee always leave it weak and often develop into a form of rheumatism. This is the reason leg locks are barred in judo contests.
Gunji Koizumi clear.gifIn theory there's no difference between theory and practice; but in practice there is! clear.gifThe man who is at the peak of his success, and the man who have just failed are in exactly the same position. Each must decide what he will do next.
Jigoro Kano clear.gifProper pre-planning prevents piss-poor performance. clear.gifDo not criticise any other martial arts or speak ill of others, as it will surely come back to you. The mountain does not laugh at the river because it is lowly, nor does the river speak ill of the mountain because it cannot move. Koichi Tohei clear.gifThe test of a good teacher is not how many questions he asks his pupils that they can readily answer, but how many questions he inspires them to ask him which he finds it hard to answer. clear.gifAfter the game the King and the Pawn go back in the same box. clear.gifHard work beats talent if talent doesn't work hard. clear.gifKihon-Dosa Wo Mamoru (Do not neglet the basic movements) clear.gifJukuryo danko -- Decisive action after careful consideration clear.gifTomaru tokoro o shire -- Know when to stop clear.gifSaki o tore -- Anticipate clear.gifIf you win, do not boast of your victory; if you lose, do not be discouraged. When it is saafe, do not be careless; when it is dangerous, do not fear. Simply continue down the path ahead. clear.gif Generally speaking, if we look at sports we find that their strong point is that because they are competitive they are interesting, and young people are likely to be attracted to them. No matter how valuable the method of physical education, if it is not put into practice, it will serve no purpose—therein lies the advantage of sports. But, in this regard there are matters to which we must also give a great deal of consideration. First, so-called sports were not created for the purpose of physical education; one competes for another purpose, namely, to win. Accordingly, the muscles are not necessarily developed in a balanced way, and in some cases the body is pushed too far or even injured. For that reason, while there is no doubt that sports are a good thing, serious consideration must be given to the selection of the sport and the training method. Sports must not be undertaken carelessly, overzealously, or without restraint. However, it is safe to say that competitive sports are a form of physical education that should be promoted with this advice in mind. The reason I have worked to popularize sports for more than twenty years and that I have strived to bring the Olympic Games to Japan is entirely because I recognize these merits. However, in times like these, when many people are enthusiastic about sports, I would like to remind them of the adverse effects of sports as well. I also urge them to keep in mind the goals of physical education—to develop a sound body that is useful to you in your daily life—and be sure to consider whether or not the method of training is in keeping with the concept of seiryoku zenyo. -- Jigoro Kano clear.gifJudo is like climbing, if life were the mountain. We must first be strong enough to climb it. The bigger the mountain, the more help we may need from others. We must map our path out and follow it through. The higher up the mountain we go, the more we can see that there are other roads or ways to reach the top. The higher we go, the more we can appreciate the struggle and accomplishments of others. -- Hayward Nishioka, Black Belt Magazine February 1971

Judo: we put the "harm" in harmony


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