We cannot treat our teacher as one who is there to service us.
We are not customers but students and we have to consider how much he has given us by teaching us skill that it has taken him many years of study to learn
When I first began studying Qigong, I had little concept of what it meant to study with a traditional Chinese teacher.
I thought that I knew all about respect.
However, it was the Western concept that I knew, not Chinese. I soon realised that I knew nothing about the respect that one pays to a teacher. I am ashamed and embarrassed to admit it now, but I even questioned my teacher about one of his rules on the very first night of meeting him.
Knowing what I know now, I was lucky that he did not stop me from coming to any future classes.
For those having been brought up in the west, we often have the idea that we go to a class and pay a fee for a service rendered.
It is actually much more complex than this and with a good teacher you become part of a family of people who are interested in learning the same thing.
Over the months and finally years, I found that the persons with whom I have studied have indeed become my family. Our hearts are the same. We all respect our teacher as a father and he in turn looks at us as his children. (more…)
There was once a very famous Aikido player in Japan who spent his whole life studying Usheba’s legendary art. Although he had dedicated his whole existence to this beautiful art he had never actually had occasion to test it in a real life situation against a determined attacker, someone intent on hurting him. Being a moralistic kind of person he realised that it would be very bad karma to actually go out and pick a fight just to test his art so he was forced to wait until a suitable occasion presented itself.
Naively, he longed for the day when he was attacked so that he could prove to himself that Aikido was powerful outside of the controlled walls of the dojo. The more he trained, the more his obsession for validation grew until one day, travelling home from work on a local commuter train, a potential situation did present itself -an overtly drunk and aggressive man boarded his train and almost immediately started verbally abusing the other passengers. (more…)