It’s the third principle of the Dojo Kun, the five guiding principles of Karate compiled from Funakoshi’s belief that Karate was as much a matter of the mind and character as of the body: Endeavor

Dojo Kun Jeff Hutchings Shotokan EndaevorA loaded word in itself that we typically associate with striving, trying to reach a goal, or progressing forward toward something we believe in. In most cases Endeavor is used in the sense of what we should be trying to do. But what about what we should be endeavoring not to do?

Endeavor, is eclectic, I believe. If we are to apply it as a guiding principle we ought to be aware of our behavior (inside and outside the dojo), not only in our attempts to do well, but in our attempts not to harm another.

Endeavor then: not to offend; not to slight; not to oppress; not to belittle; not to impede; not to embarrass.

Words, as R. Sharma said, can inspire or destroy.In the karate world, fortunately, for every one who uses the hammer of harshness as they see fit, there are a thousand more that choose tact and encouragement.

This then, is a shout out to the latter.

Oss! to the teachers who commend  rather than condemn, motivate rather than denounce.

Oss! To those who Endeavor…