Comments for Response to Podcast 016 - "Kendo, Death, and Hope"

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Nov 06, 2019
In reply to Tadakatsu
by: Kendo-Guide.Com

Thank you very much for sharing your thoughts! I am so sorry for my late reply.

I really appreciated that! I’ve lived outside of Japan since 1993. Well, on and off, but it's been almost 26 years now. I was in New Zealand, Guatemala and the USA so far. I left Japan when I was 19 so I've been living outside Japan longer now.

Ever since I left Japan, I have encountered a lot of things that conflicted my "then-common sense". Many religions out there and many individual beliefs out there. But what those who do kendo aim at one thing. Self-improvement.

Many people talk down others publicly to make themselves look better. That is not what you do if you truly believe in what you do. When you do kendo, you don’t talk down what others do to look yourself better. Well, I should say, IF they do kendo based on the concept of kendo.

I don’t know a whole lot of Shintoism as knowledge so I cannot say this for sure. But what I "traditionally" know that we don't put a tattoo on our body because our body is given by our parents. And our ancestors were gods (in Shintoism).

Again, like you said, the Japanese doesn’t really know about own religions, Shintoism and Buddhism, as in the main religions of Japan. These things are passed onto the next generations through our parents' belief and actions.

I don't want to get into religious talk, but one thing I want to make sure is that kendo is to improve ourselves with respect to our training partners, who are called opponents from time to time. We hurt others by hitting them and our improvement is based on that. Without others, we cannot improve.

Whom we live for depends on our belief. Everyone sincerely lives for what they believe in. But at the very end, I really hope we can hold hands and live together. Just like Kata No. 3.

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