Bowing

Hollywood1340

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(Done at the behest of Judo Kid)
How do you show respect? I nod to people I see, I bow to the mat, and those of higher rank, when requested during class, and when other wise polite. Sir, and Ma'am are the norm, and try and listen to all.
 

Bob Hubbard

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What does respect have to do with training in the arts? What does bowing have to do with training?

Does this sound familiar?
"I go into a class, I want to learn how to do stuff that works. Whats with all this bowwing, and siring, and fancy dancing.

Ok, I bowed to your picture, I bowed to the teacher, and the shmuck next to me...so whats with this meditation crap? Like I'm going to sit there and think 'which move should I do' when I'm out busting heads.

Oh jeeze, more fancy hand gestures. When the hell am I going to learn to beat people up? I think I wasted my money on this stupid costume they make you wear here.

Oh man.... not another stupid useless thing....I should have taken up boxing.....but its hard to write with those gloves on....

Oh man...more bowing.... This class sucks.... They didnt teach me ****. I bet I could kick their asses. "
 
K

Kirk

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Originally posted by Kaith Rustaz
What does respect have to do with training in the arts? What does bowing have to do with training?

Does this sound familiar?
"I go into a class, I want to learn how to do stuff that works. Whats with all this bowwing, and siring, and fancy dancing.

Ok, I bowed to your picture, I bowed to the teacher, and the shmuck next to me...so whats with this meditation crap? Like I'm going to sit there and think 'which move should I do' when I'm out busting heads.

Oh jeeze, more fancy hand gestures. When the hell am I going to learn to beat people up? I think I wasted my money on this stupid costume they make you wear here.

Oh man.... not another stupid useless thing....I should have taken up boxing.....but its hard to write with those gloves on....

Oh man...more bowing.... This class sucks.... They didnt teach me ****. I bet I could kick their asses. "


ROFLMAO!!! Where'd you get that from?
 

Rich Parsons

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I bow with respect to the New Lord Sidious Picture.

Nice Job Kaith Great Work!!!!

With respect to all
 

Bob Hubbard

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Thanks guys.

Seriously, I made it up. Had many of those same thoughts when I was just starting out. Couldn't understand why things were the way they were. Had a long conversation with Ingmar from Sweden... he showed me about a half dozen techniches that flowed right out of the traditional kenpo salutation. I was like, "That is useful? Damn!" He also showed me some offencive stuff right out of Short 1.

3 years of training, a casual knowledge of 40+ arts, and some exposure to the real movers and shakers has opened my eyes. Its onething to train in the one room school house...going to Harvards a whole different world.

Too many times folks get involved, have the blinders on, refuse to bend and lose out one whole worlds of things.

Bowing....I rarely bow. I don't train in arts that do alot of it. We bow at the begining of class as a group, and at the end, then shake hands. Nothing fancy. Now, if I got the chance to train in some of the arts I'm interested in would I? Yes. I have no problems following the customs of different arts. Maybe its the larger experiences I've had traveling around the US, or just a rejection of the 'mental constipation' too many folks suffer from.

Youre gonna teach me how to swing a sword? but first I must put on a pink tutu and do a pirroete? No Problem. See, I understand that spin will help my speed draw. :D

:asian:

Its the open mind baby...gotta have one to excel in the arts.
 

Yari

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Originally posted by Kaith Rustaz


Its the open mind baby...gotta have one to excel in the arts.

Like sweet music in my ears!

Why is it you have to get old to understand this?


/Yari
 
Y

yilisifu

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Respect and courtesy used to be common bywords in the old days of martial arts......

"May not a bow be compared to the true Dao? That which is low is made high and that which was high is brought down."
 
M

Mike Clarke

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I agree, you have to have an open mind if you want to recieve an education. You also have to make sure you don't fill it too quickly with the 'easy' stuff [the obvious]. If you do, you'll miss out on sooooooooooooo much !

Mike.
 
T

TkdWarrior

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well Bows happen before class(lineup) n after class(line up)...
if we(we n our teacher) meet outside dojo, we do bow n then sometimes handshake, everything goes...
Respect should be in heart bows does nothing...
wat the use when u bow n then thinking "BS" i'll better dont bow..
may be i don't even go to that class which makes me think "BS"
-TkdWarrior-
 
R

RyuShiKan

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Good questionWhy Bow?

When bowing to the photo of some teacher (possibly dead) you are showing respect and gratitude for someone that went before you in the Way.

When bowing to other students you are showing respect for them. (Obviously)

When bowing to a senior you are doing the same as when bowing to a photo. showing respect and gratitude for someone that went before you in the Way.

Bowing to the mats????? Dont know about that one

Being raised Catholic has helped me understand a lot about the rituals of dojos to some degree.
Catholics genuflect before entering the pew, and so on.

Why do we show respect in the dojo?

Just think of the opposite were to happen (i.e. being disrespectful)more often than not tempers would rule and people would get hurt.
Thats one of the things that separates a dojo from a gang of thugs.

Why bow to show respect?

Certain Asian customs come with doing an Asian art. Oddly enough Chinese do not bow so muchJapanese, on the other hand bow all the time and often for ridiculous reasons. Other Asian countries often feel Japanese are not sincere in their politeness because of this, and several other factors. I tend to agree.
Japanese have what is known as tatemae which might be called obligatory politeness and doesnt have an ounce of sincerity in it. They use it when in certain situations that require such protocol.
 

KennethKu

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Originally posted by RyuShiKan .....Japanese have what is known as tatemae which might be called obligatory politeness and doesnt have an ounce of sincerity in it. They use it when in certain situations that require such protocol.

I can assure you that is an Asian thing, rather than a Japanese way. They will seldom say no to you eventhough they are dead set against it or impossible to deliver. *sigh* They tend to take offence at you when you are simply being honest in telling them you can't help.
 
R

RyuShiKan

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Originally posted by KennethKu
I can assure you that is an Asian thing, rather than a Japanese way. They will seldom say no to you eventhough they are dead set against it or impossible to deliver. *sigh* They tend to take offence at you when you are simply being honest in telling them you can't help.

What your talking about isn't really "tatemae".
I have lived in China several years and have done business with them and know what your talking about.

"Tatemae" is very unique to Japanese culture. It's much more complex than what you were referring to.
 
C

chufeng

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Bowing to the mats????? Dont know about that one

It is a preparation for learning. It reminds one to be humble when learning...if you step onto the mat with a full cup, you may miss an important lesson that day...

It is not religious...and you are not bowing to the mat...you are reminding yourself to remain open to new learning...

:asian:
chufeng
 

James Kovacich

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Originally posted by chufeng
It is a preparation for learning. It reminds one to be humble when learning...if you step onto the mat with a full cup, you may miss an important lesson that day...

It is not religious...and you are not bowing to the mat...you are reminding yourself to remain open to new learning...

:asian:
chufeng
 

qizmoduis

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Originally posted by KennethKu
I can assure you that is an Asian thing, rather than a Japanese way. They will seldom say no to you eventhough they are dead set against it or impossible to deliver. *sigh* They tend to take offence at you when you are simply being honest in telling them you can't help.

Hahah! I can attest to this from personal experience. My wife is Vietnamese, and the "little white lie" is part and parcel of the culture. It's really a matter of principle to them, and her. That principle clashes greatly with mine, which is one of directness and honesty. American culture would generally find this propensity to lie about many things in order to make others happy or to not lose respect immoral. But she finds my forthrightness and honesty (not that I'm perfect, obviously) to be immoral.

One of the odd consequences of this was that I was responsibile for cancelling magazine subscriptions because she couldn't refuse the telemarketers. It took a few years to convince her to let the answering machine handle it. Once she was on the phone, she was unable to hang up until she had made the other person happy. It was my job to make them unhappy. I've managed to scrape away some of that politeness over the years :rofl: and now she's almost as rude as I am.

As to bowing: vietnamese also bow, but not nearly to the extent that japanese do. The bows are perfunctory at best, small gestures of respect for elders and others. Their equivalent to bowing is built into their modes of address, which can be downright obfuscatory to us westerners, especially when translated (indirectly) to english. I'm, apparently, Uncle #2 to the children of my wife's older brother, but the daughter of my wife's older sister calls me something entirely different. It isn't even that simple, because the nieces and nephews have different modes for me depending on their gender and on their own relative ages and all that. Somehow, they keep it straight. I'm no real expert in vietnamese culture, however. My experience is limited to my participation with my in-laws.

So, taking this back to the bowing in class issue: let's replace the japanese class (with bowing) with a vietnamese class (with modes of address and a slight bow as a greeting). Being that modes of address in vietnamese culture and bowing in japanese culture are cultural constructs evolved over generations to help members of those cultures relate to each other, similar to western gestures of handshakes, salutes, curtsies, etc., why would some object to the japanese bow on religious grounds, but not the handshake or the modes of address? If I use the correct mode of address to greet my father-in-law (which I can't pronounce, but that's another problem), would it be a violation of my religious principles (assuming I had any)? Would it be a violation of those principles if a particular mode of address was required between student and teacher in the hypothetical vietnamese class? Importantly, if it is a violation of your religious principles, why do you think you would have the right to force your religious objections down the throats of everyone else, especially in what is a private forum.

The training effectiveness of modes of address, bowing, etc, is completely and utterly irrelevant to this discussion. If the rules require bowing, then so be it. Frankly, I'm sick and tired of provincial idiots using the shield of "religious objections" as a war cry against anything that doesn't fit perfectly into their miniscule world-views. It's pathetic.
 

Michael Billings

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As you can tell from my previous posts in other threads, I am a proponent of perpetuating some of the traditions inherent in any of the Arts, as part of the Art. Just because we are in, most of us, a Western Culture, does this give us the right to change the history and traditions handed down as part of our Art? This may sound really silly coming from an American Kenpoist, given the brief history of our System. Of course I came out of a traditional Japanese system and studied Taekwondo and some Chinese systems under the Chinese Kenpo umbrella.

If I remember Mr. Parker correctly, who was the "Founder" of our system, we salute people, not bow to them. We bow before our creator. Given he was a devout Mormon, AND was the "Founder" of the system, that was his choice. JudoKid's instructor was not the founder, but rather an instructor, albeit a good instructor, whose values are different. Does that mean he can autonomously change a tradition handed down for generations?

Mr. Parker did bow at times, but this was coming on and off the mat. He may have nodded his head at other instructors who did not have the salute as part of their system, but he wanted to acknowledge and not be disrespectful in their house. Mr. Contatser traveled with him extensively could clarify this. I chose to follow this "reasonable man" approach. It is not a matter of my faith, which is strong. The bow, as a cultural handshake or sign of respect, is appropriate and deserved. Remember in Eastern cultures there are different degrees of bowing, from the truly thankful or respectfully, to one almost demeaning and condescending - or reprimanding and sarcastic. Shaking hands, especially if you do it with the left hand, as Bob Dole had to do, would have been a mortal insult in some cultures.

The Chinese, while not bowing as much, do use the salute as almost a wave, handshake or bow. The Martial Arts from the southeast islands, Silat, Kali, etc. have a traditional "bow", the Muay Thai kick boxers have rituals before matches, and often before trainings.

You can westernize an art and increase its content and skill set, but should you lose where it comes from as you do this? Should the traditions inherent in the source of the Art be laid aside? This seems incredibly egotistical, rude, and disrespectful. Once again, look at what a reasonable and prudent man would do. Do you want to cause controversy, and if so why? Publicity, attention, dissents within an Association, etc.

There is usually a reason, then the reason behind the reason. It is a complex world we live in and nothing is quite as black and white as JudoKid presented on the McDojo thread. Time, seasoning, sophistication - we all lacked these at one time, hopefully he will gain them as he turns into JudoMan.

Respectfully - my opinion,
-Michael
:asian:
 
J

Jill666

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I bow as a matter of respect- having been brought up by an Army man, I'm accustomed to nominal demonstrations of respect, if not for the man, than for what the man represents.

I don't find that in conflict with my personal feelings, or beliefs. (Actually, I don't have any religious convictions, and don't really care if there is a higher power or not. I figure I'll find out when I'm dead). Bowing does not mean I agree 100% with what is being taught, just that I appreciate the time my instructor has put into the art and his willingness to share his knowlege with me. If I have a disagreement, I can still voice it. I bow to my classmates, who are on this journey with me and are willing to let me pummel and twist their bodies and challenge their will. There is something in that to admire.

If I meet these people on the street, I don't bow. I shake hands or nod, that being the appropriate response to the situation. Once I bumped into a classmate at the mall and he bowed. I nodded back.
 
J

J-kid

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I get to be the bad guy cause i dont like bowing :eek:

I will have to dig up some old papaers


THIS AGAIN (******)
 
T

TKDman

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I think the best way to show respect is to earn it by setting a good example and listening to instructions attentively.

Bowing is just a tradition. I supose it is the most simple way of showing respect to your peers. In my opinion you shouldn't have to show respect falsely, you should earn it over a long period of time.
 
O

Old Warrior

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"How do you show respect?"

There is a difference between showing respect and complying with the customs of the place where you may be.

A judge is called "Your Honor" whether or not you think he/she is an incompetent or a crook.

My closest friend is a highly decorated former US Marine, who for years has been my training partner. He has earned my respect.

There is nothing demeaning about following social customs. Respect comes a different place within me.
 
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