The ultimate goal of instruction of the Isshin Shorinji Ryu system is self-mastery. This should not be misconstrued as to attain an inflated ego but rather complete mind, body and spirit harmony.
We believe that there are three categories of Karate practitioner. One, the student, willingly discharges tasks without question in his or her eagerness to learn. The second, the disciple, soon begins to ask questions about the tasks he or she has been performing for years in an effort to better understand the full meaning of each task. The third and final level of practitioner, the master, has perfected the tasks and coordinated with these, the knowledge gained through years of questioning to apply all this material to his or her every day life so that they may become the masters of themselves.
We also believe that there are five main stages of development of technique:
I. FORM - learning the proper method of execution of a technique.
II. STRENGTH - utilization of correct muscle groups to attain maximum power with least overall effort.
III. REPETITION - continuous review of technique with application of correct form and maximum strength.
IV. SPEED - follows naturally after much repetition of strength and form - speed is not something to be practiced but is an end result of practice.
V. INTUITIVE WISDOM - knowing without thinking - applying "conscious nonconsciousness" to the task.
This last stage of development best emphasizes the Zen doctrine of Mushin or "mind of no mind".
University Of Wyoming
Okinawa-te Karate Club, 1977
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