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Zen and Dojo Kun

Page history last edited by danhausel 8 years, 3 months ago

Zen & Dojo Kun.

Martial Arts Philosophy, Zen and Ki are very important in our style.


WE end each training session with one of our DOJO KUN. These must be learned and understood by all students in Seiyo Shorin-Ryu Karate & Kobudo.


Doryoku no seishin o yashinau koto. 'Cultivate a spirit of effort and perseverance'.

Mazu jiko wo shire, shikashite ta wo shire 'First know yourself, before searching for others'.

Kekki no yu o imashimeru koto. 'Refrain from violent and uncontrolled behavior'.

Kara te ni sente nashi ‘there is no first attack in karate’.

Jinkaku kansei ni tsutomeru koto – 'Work to Perfect your Character'

Makoto no michi o mamoru koto 'Have devotion in seeking a true way'

Reigi o omonjiru koto 'Always act with good manners'

Do mu gen 'There can be no end to learning'




No matter who we are, or how long we have been training, the evolution of our character is more important than any rank we will ever achieve. But we must also realize that our rank and testing is also a part of our evolution.


Build character, self-confidence and self-esteem through martial arts training, discipline and traditions. Lead a life built on compassion and ethics.


One needs to realize is that martial arts is for the training of the person, to improve self-confidence, it is not used as a tool for violence.


With the absence of determination, all progress ends. Mastery can only come from diligent effort and practice. It can take years to perfect a single technique, but without persistence, progress will not occur and perfection cannot be accomplished.


'Karate is like the boiling water'- If you remove the fire from it, it will cool.



People are never remembered for wealth, money, cars or fancy homes - people are remembered for the books they've written, the care they have given, and for legends that endure through time. - Dan Hausel, Soke


"In the beginning everything is important. At the end nothing is important, in other words one has to know how to give the correct importance to everything, but at the very least, to know how to separate oneself from everything”. He is also often heard to say: "In karate, just as in life, although it is important to set off and arrive, it is the path to be run which is of principal importance." In other words one must live every step, every instant, one must live the moment” - Oscar Higa, Sensei


My father used to say: “I see someone doing Kata and I get an approximate idea of the kind of person he is.” In the same way each person writes in a different way, I think each of us has a body calligraphy that distinguishes us from the others. We express and write through our bodies what lies in our interior. So, respecting and enriching it is fundamental for the development of the calligraphy of each body, which is the essence of traditional Karate. We have inside two kinds of Katas: internal and external. The more you improve your internal part, your sensitivity, the external Kata will be more beautiful. I learned this from my father; he thought all these things but could not express them in words, so, in his poor Spanish, he would say them not so clearly, but after so many years I now realize how right he was, and although he is no longer with me, he is still teaching me. I always say this full of pride - Oscar Higa, Hanshi


Ki demonstration at the University of Wyoming. Soke Hausel takes full force kick in a vital area & smiles.

This photo demonstrates the incredible power of Ki (energy). At a University of Wyoming basketball game, Sensei Donette Gillespie

kicks Soke Hausel hard enough to lift his heels off the floor while wearing absolutely no protection.




Mushin, the act of emptying your mind, is a very important concept in martial arts, as well as in life. It is so important in karate, that the kanji used to identify karate includes “empty”. The significance of mushin is martial arts is extremely important and one could not successfully defend themselves without using this.


I can still remember when I started training in karate in 1964, we were periodically given philosophy including comments like “just react, don’t think”. As a teenager, this was a very foreign concept, but I remember one day, all of a sudden my body reacted without any cognitive thought and the essence of this philosophy finally became clear. It was a very exciting moment of discovery.


In the book “Be Like Water – Practical Wisdom From the Martial Arts” by Joseph Cardillo, a chapter on “Empty Your Mind” he mentions the adage “If you are looking for something, you will never find it” and a rule in sparring (kumite) “don’t assume you know what is going to happen before it happens”. Everyone who has practiced martial arts for any length of time will have stories of how they anticipated a certain attack only to find that the attack turned out to be different, which led to unsuccessful self-defense. But by emptying their minds and reacting only to motion, they were always successful.


In sparring and in self-defense, Cardillo mentions that your purpose is to remain attentive: make no assumptions regarding your actions or your opponent’s actions. You need to empty your mind and take each movement as it happens. In martial arts we speak of a sticky mind. A sticky mind is the opposite of mushin. A sticky mind results from assumptions and prejudices.


In terms of daily life, mushin is a philosophy that needs to be practiced daily as suggested by Cardillo, because it is too easy to give into negative thoughts and prejudices. It is counterproductive and destructive to make assumptions about others, events, etc, and we have all been guilty of this.


Anger pitted against anger only breeds antagonism. The assuming mind, allowed to run loose, will contaminate relationships and limit successes. I have been guilty of this such that it destroyed a close friendship particularly after my friend made similar unfounded judgments (anger against anger). If there is one thing I could wish for all of my students, it is that you never have to loose a friend over poor judgments from both of you so that you will never be able to talk to or communicate with that friend again because of prejudices. But as another friend suggested to me recently, if a friend is that shortsighted, it is their loss, not mine. Even so, it hurts to loose a close friend.


Eliminating negative emotions and assumptions is difficult for everyone, but there are great benefits to be achieved as soon as we start trying to eliminate the negative in our lives. One trick is to flow with the situation not control it – be like water. Give yourself permission to let go of negative – it only works against you. Empty your mind of emotions, residue and unyielding reactions. For myself (Soke) this is very difficult as I am a very sensitive and emotional person – but it can be done. Anger is our enemy. Avoid assumptions about yourself and others. Don’t assume you know what is going to happen before it does, because this is a prejudice in judgment. Be alert and widen your vision and open your mind. Practice active nonaction. Generating positive energy can be very useful. I have a very good friend, Aditiya Vindhara, and when one is around him, he is so positive that you cannot help but be positive around him. This is how we should be. Calm, positive, and nonjudgmental.



A water basin - symbol of fluidity, path, cleanliness, movement and life. ****


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