Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
Codes of ethics are the rules we use to govern the way we want to live. Last week we discussed Codes of Character. This week we’ll discuss Codes of Karate, which believe it or not, promotes a philosophy for living your life in addition to a philosophy for fighting.
Karate-do (the way, or philosophy, of the empty hand) teaches more than punching, striking and kicking. It advocates peace, harmony and balance. The following are the eight codes of Isshinryu karate (the Kenpo Gokui) that we learn in our school.
1. A person’s heart is the same as heaven and earth.
In Chinese thought, heaven and earth means the universe. This code states humans must be one with the universe. We must get along with our fellow man. In short, this code is about harmony.
2. The blood circulating is similar to the moon and sun.
The moon follows the sun, and the sun follows the moon. This code is about cyclical change, which is one of the stages of change in the I-Ching. This code also teaches harmony.
3. The manner of drinking and spitting is either hard or soft.
Drinking means taking in, inhaling, retreating. Spitting means expelling, exhaling or advancing. Hard or soft shows the concept of yin and yang. This code is about balance.
4. A person’s unbalance is the same as a weight.
Again, balance. Yin and yang.
5. The body must be able to change position at any time.
This code is about flexibility and adaptability in ones thoughts as well as in action.
6. The time to strike is when the opportunity presents itself.
This code is about taking advantage of opportunity, seizing the moment.
7. The eyes must see all sides
This code is about awareness of self, as well as of surroundings.
8. The ears must listen in all directions.
In addition to awareness, this code is about knowledge.
There is so much more to be learned from the codes of karate than what I’ve posted here. However, I thought this served as a good example of a written code of ethics.
What codes do YOU live by? Where did you learn them? How have your codes shaped the person you are? And do you teach them to others?