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Not The Same As The "Old Days"

I often meet with elder martial artists who tell me that martial arts are not the same any more. Whether it is Karate, Judo, Aikido, Kendo... the art does not matter. Most elders will say that the art was more authentic in the "old days."

Students today are lazy. They do not understand discipline. They want to be pampered. It has become too commercial. The martial arts have become a sport. The martial arts have become just a show. Lawyers and the risk of lawsuits have forced teachers to water down what they teach.

It sounds so hopeless!

A senior Karate instructor once told me, "True Karate is no longer taught in Hawaii."

I replied, "How can students learn true Karate if sensei like you will not teach it?"

I wonder, in 1900 I'll bet that the elder martial arts masters complained about the youngsters of that time. I'll bet they thought that the art was not the same as the "old days."

There will always be "old days." We only have the time we live in. It is up to us to practice sincerely. That is what makes an art authentic. It helps if we explore the history and traditions of our respective arts to help us keep on a true course.

One day, these will be the "old days."

In my opinion, some of the finest martial artists are living today.

Respectfully,

Charles C. Goodin