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  • Respect

    This is just some random thing that came up in my mind.

    So we all know about the animosity between Korea and Japan (more from the Koreans than the Japanese), right? Have anyone noticed that within the kendo community there seems to be little to none of this hatred? Just about every Korean kendokas I've met really respect Japanese kendokas. Almost ironically, Eiga seems to be one of the more popular kendoka amongst the Korean kendokas I've talked to.

    On the KKA website, there is an old article about the Korea-Japan University kendo shiais. This year the Korean team did really well and won virtually everything. Here is a quote from one of the articles:"The Korean sunsoo/senshuu showed that they have the speed and endurance/stamina, but the Japanese sunsoo had incredible timing and had control of the distance. They never let go of an opportunity." ( "이번 방문경기를 통해 확인된 우리 선수들이 가지고 있는 체력과 스피드에 일본 선수들의 장점이라고 할 수 있는 거리감각, 기회포착 감각 등을 플러스시키는 것이 앞으로의 커다란 과제라고 할 수 있겠다" Anyone who can translate it better, please do so. My Korean isn't very good).

    We can see that the KOrean kendokas definately respect the Japanese kendokas here. Especially since the Korean media, especially those written in English, seems to be a bit biased. Always trying to make Koreans look really good. I can't speak for the Japanese side because I can't read anything in Japanese, but I'm sure it's a mutual respect.

    The final thought/question is: Why can't this type of respect and admiration spread to the rest of the people in these two countries, especially Korea?

  • #2
    One word:

    Politics.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by tgsfg
      The final thought/question is: Why can't this type of respect and admiration spread to the rest of the people in these two countries, especially Korea?
      I think if everyone in the world whacked each other with sticks for fun, we would have a lot less pent-up aggression.

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      • #4
        absolutely

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        • #5
          Those who brandish the sword have far deeper insight.

          The wounded pride of a nation takes quite a bit of time to heal. You see, it is largely due to the Japanese invasions of 1592 and 1597 waged by Toyatomi Hideyoshi, the forced occupation the first half of the 20th century, the repression of Korean culture, traditional martial arts, even speaking the Korean language! These feelings last for generations. It's the same in regards to the wounded pride of China. Perhaps even more so!
          We who practice the way of the sword can transcend these resentments because we continously examine ourselves. In our quest for self-improvement, we learn to temper our rage, respect our opponents and grow from our pain. We seek to cultivate integriy. Conversly, we can develope a sixth sense about integrity in others. Every match with an opponent is a learning experience about the skill they have attained and a glance into the quality of that persons Soul. Regardless of school or country of origin. Those who brandish the sword have far deeper insight. Well...some do, or at least aspire to. It's the same with artists, musicians, scientists and many athletes.
          It will always be the individual's honor not the nation's behavior that is the measure of a man/woman. Let us raise our swords, together, to a world without unresolved resentment and blind nationalism.

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          • #6
            answer to your question .. Mr. tgsfg,

            to each his/her own, everyone has different agendas on their mind. politics as meng mentioned is (i think) a large portion of these left over bitterness. That includes everything from nationalism to just blatant ignorence (as seen in many japanese and korean younger generations, and yes I am speaking from personal experience here. As I am very familiar with both) As long as people can change, things will and just may change. However, it's difficult to get people to change their thinking, their way of doing things. As the french say.. "that's life.."

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Masahiro
              . . .As the french say.. "that's life.."
              I thought that was Frank Sinatra that said that.

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              • #8
                I think Kendo and Kumdo are getting along very well, especially in the eastcoast and tri-state area(of the U.S., cant speak for others). We participate in tournaments together and visit eachothers dojos/dojangs quite frequently. I feel there is alot to learn from one another, and any type of bias or hate is totally rediculous. I hope to practice with all kumdo and kendoka, and believe its much better that we actually have more than one "style", because it keeps things interesting. And a little friendly competition is a good thing.

                I am not going to lie, every time I go to practice in a Kendo dojo, I feel like it my first time practicing, it feels somehow exotic and exciting, because the environment is differnent...and I get to do sonkyo .

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                • #9
                  emm... in the summer i have a discusion with a friend because this... the kumdo and kendo... the matter was if is better have japanese sensei only or also have a korean sensei (like in my dojo in chile) a he in a principle said: its better to just have japanese senseis because the kendo born in japan... but i said: its ok that, but the korean kendo is just some other style of kendo and you can learn other things from it. and some of that things maybe you never will get from a japanese sensei, because the trainings are diferent (or not equal )... so i want opinions from you guys..!

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                  • #10
                    I my dojang has a weird relationship with kendo ^_^ We are Are literally right down the street from a ShinKendo place, so during demonstrations and things like that, alot of times we are literally competing for approval of the audience/potential joiners. So, this being said, there is a very strong Korean vs. Japanese rivalry, but its only that, a rivalry, nothing malicious, at the end of the day we could all go train and learn from each other if we wanted to ^_^

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                    • #11
                      It's great to know a new day is dawning. Again, the perceptive insight of swordsmen.

                      I'm glad to know kumdo and kendo have a friendly relationship in Korea, today. (Regardless of age-old resentment, as can be poiniently illustrated in the KBS drama, The Immortal YI Soon Shin. Damn, that's a magnificent series!) Good technique, honor and respect are primary to both arts. As a 21st century American person of European ancestry, I have cherished the friendships I have won with Native American Indians. This is primarily because of thier ability to see me as a person, not a descendent of a genicidal force. (Hell, I wasn't even alive then.) We are, afterall, the essence of our character. What it all boils down to is one's Spirit. Good swordsmanship is the end result of much practice and self-examination. Recognizable to equally devoted practitiones of the Art. And the talented bullies, boasters and hotdogs? This path only takes you so far. One rises to only a certain level of excellence using ego and willfulness. Why is it that students are so completely overwhelmed by thier Masters when bouting? I am talking about REAL Masters. Perhaps because they have gained wisdom through decades of developing an uncanny focus and undying will to improve? My Master Kim never acted out of base egotism, rather he was driven by honor, always pushing himself to advance further. While I will never be his equal, I will always reach furhter, as is the goal of any devoted student... the road never ends.
                      Hey, how did your promotion test go in July? Did you find a of putting-out the candle flame? Many salutations to your fine aspirations!

                      Yours in Martial Spirit, Jon Palombi

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Jon Palombi
                        Hey, how did your promotion test go in July? Did you find a of putting-out the candle flame? Many salutations to your fine aspirations!

                        Yours in Martial Spirit, Jon Palombi
                        It turned out fine ^_^ I've had a few more tests since then (green belt now) Something kicked in during testing and I was able to do it just fine, and testing is about the only time I could do it (except recently I'm able to do it with some consistency now). I guess it's like learning to swim, you try and try but cant do it very well, until you fall off a boat and you either swim or drown ^_^ I swam

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                        • #13
                          Congratulations, Mukdo Centered, on your achievement!

                          Good for you! Keep on aspiring towards your own self-mastery, both as a practitioner of the sword and as a human being. The path of swordsmanship leads one ever onwards, towards the state of no mind. As you said, sink or swim. And I can definately relate to your journey. The first time I tried to silence the flame, I brushed in twice, then hit the candle bellow the flame...sending it across the room. Little by little, understanding dawns in each of us.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by KhawMengLee
                            One word:

                            Politics.
                            There is no politics in kendo, only death_before_dishonour.

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                            • #15
                              No politocs in the World period!

                              Originally posted by Hai_hai
                              There is no politics in kendo, only death_before_dishonour.
                              Or if your Zanshin is bad, Death after Dishonour!
                              With a dull kitchen knife as the seppuku weapon of choice.

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