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Words of Sosai Oyama

I have pursued the way of the fist for nearly forty years…the training has been hard and most times very painful. In addition to fighting practicioners of all styles of martial arts…I have also tested my karate against live bulls. Many people have applauded my efforts and have called me “superman” and “god hand”…I appreciate their words, yet this was never my intent. To the contrary, I am just one man seeking to understand the deeper principals of karate.

【Karate Baka-Ichidai】
I was absolutely crazy about Karate. Now, I don’t regret any of it.

【Humane Fundamentals】
Bend your head and rise your eyes, keep your mouth closed and free your mind, as a starting point you should serve others with filial humility.

【Don’t lose your gumption】
Losing money is a small thing, but losing trust is huge. To lose one’s bravey is to lose one’s self.

【Have your weapons ready】
One should always have their weapons ready.Polish your sword and keep it in its scabbard.To draw one’s sword unnecessarily is not the way to fight.

【Heroes and Death】
Becoming a hero upon death is less than beautiful.

【The birthplace of Kyokushin】
I opened a place to train in Karate in a corner of Ikebukuro. A place at the time that could hardly be called a dojo. It was there that I named my karate ‘Kyokushin” with the goal of seeking the ultimate truth, and set forth to reach that goal.

【The grassroots of Kyokushin】
Without putting anything into the training, nothing can be proven. If you can’t prove what you train, you won’t be trusted. If you are not trusted, then you won’t be respected.

【Superhuman-like technique and Effort】
In the attainment of superhuman-like technique, the process of how you get there is far more important for humans than the technique itself.

【The state of battle】
You fear your opponent’s punches and kicks. But, so does your opponent. You are not the only one who fears. That is why you dare to move forward.

【Debt of gratitude and resentment】
Return any favor bestowed upon you two-fold and forget any ill-feelings received.

【Gratitude toward one’s teacher】
A person who draws a bow on one’s teacher will never succeed.

Justice without power is empty, but power without justice is only Violence.

【Day to Day】
Greet the morning with hope and the evening with gratitude.

【Bravery to move forward】
The bravey it takes to continuously move forward counts for more as the key to final victory, more so than technique and knowledge.

【Impaitence and Resignation】
What does it mean to be impatient? It means trying to rush a win. What does it mean to show resignation? It means to rush a loss.

【Those who are taught and those who teach】
Humans are stronger when they are being taught rather than when they teach. Put simply, when someone decides on a goal and heads toward it, they truly become stronger.

【Those who are taught and those who teach】
Humans are stronger when they are being taught rather than when they teach. Put simply, when someone decides on a goal and heads toward it, they truly become stronger.

The “theory of spirit” is merely an ideology with no meaning if you do not base it on the prerequisite of learning through actual specialized knowledge, skills and level of performance.

【Power is all important】
In Kyokushin Karate I teach my students the following: Power comes first, next comes speed, and third comes technique. There is a saying, with technique comes strength. But without power you cannot bring the technique into action.

【Empty your mind】
The time when you really hone your technique is to become totally absorbed in your training to the point where your mind is empty. This is called entering a state of perfect spiritiual concentration.

【One’s mission】
My mission in life is the pursuit of peace.That includes the total abrogation of nuclear weapons and a halt to wars in the world. This is what I see as the ultimate goal/ purpose of Kyokushin Karate.

The Eleven Mottoes of Mas Oyama

  1. The Martial Way begins and ends with courtesy. Therefore, be properly and genuinely courteous at all times.
  2. Following the Martial Way is like scaling a cliff- continue upwards without rest. It demands absolute and unfaltering devotion the task at hand.
  3. Strive to seize the initiative in all things, all the time guarding against actions stemming from selfish animosity or thoughtlessness.
  4. Even for the Martial Artist, the place of money cannot be ignored. Yet one should be careful never to become attached to it.
  5. The Martial Way is centered in posture. Strive to maintain correct posture at all times.
  6. The Martial Way begins with one thousand days and is mastered after ten thousand days of training.
  7. In the Martial Arts, introspection begets wisdom. Always see contemplation on your actions as an opportunity to improve.
  8. The nature and purpose of the Martial Way is universal. All selfish desires should be roasted in the tempering fires of hard training.
  9. The Martial Arts begin with a point and ends in a circle. Straight lines stem from this principle.
  10. The true essence of the Martial Way can only be realized through experience. Knowing this, learn never to fear its demands.
  11. Always remember: In the Martial Arts, the rewards of a confident and grateful heart are truly abundant.