At Xen-Do, we would say that ‘respect’ is probably the most important word in life, as well as in the dojo. Without respect, there is no society. So let’s look at what respect actually means:
Respect for yourself (self-respect)
Be proud of what you are and who you are. We are all special, and we all have natural gifts. Discover what yours are. Get your Sensei to help you. You can achieve anything if you set your mind to it. But only if you have self-respect and stand tall.
Respect for each other (mutual respect)
We may not like everybody we meet, but we should always respect them. Because we are all equal as human beings. Remember – treat others as you would wish to be treated yourself. Respect for each other produces teamwork and harmony. Disrespect creates misery and war.
Respect for your Sensei
Your Sensei knows more than you do. That is what the Belts mean. But your Sensei wants to teach you and see you achieve more and more. Your Sensei cares about you.
Your Sensei respects YOU
You have bothered to come to train and learn. So there is mutual respect between you and your Sensei. That is why we bow to each other.