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The Budo Charter-Budo Kensho


"Budo, the Japanese martial ways, have their origins in the age-old martial spirit of Japan. Through centuries of historical and social change, these forms of traditional culture evolved from combat technique (jutsu) into ways of self-development (Do). 

Seeking the perfect unity of mind and technique, budo has been refined and cultivated into ways of physical training and spiritual development. The study of Budo encourages courteous behavior, advances technical proficiency, strengthens the body, and perfects the mind. Modern Japanese have inherited traditional values through budo which continue to play a significant role in the formation of the Japanese personality, serving as sources of boundless energy and rejuvenation. As much as budo has attracted strong interest internationally and is studied around the world. 

However, a recent trend towards infaturation just with technical ability compounded by an excessive concern with winning is a severe threat to the essence of budo. To prevent any possible misinterpretation, practitioners of budo must continuously engage in self-examination and endeavor to perfect and preserve this traditional culture. 

It is with this hope that we, the member organizations of the Japanese Budo Association, established The Budo Charter in order to uphold the fundamental principles of Budo. 

Article 1: Objective of Budo 

Through physical training and mental training in the Japanese martial ways, budo exponents seek to build their character, enhance their senses of judgement, and become disciplined individuals capable of making contributions to society at large. 

Article 2: Keiko (Training) 

When training in budo, practitioners must always act with respect and courtesy, adhere to the prescribed fundamentals of the art, and resist the temptation to pursue mere technical skills rather than strive towards the perfect unity of mind, body, and technique. 

Article 3: Shiai (Competition) 

Whether competing in a match or doing set forms (kata), exponents must externalise the spirit underlying budo. They must do their best at all times, winning with modesty, accepting defeat gracefully and constantly exhibiting self-control. 

Article 4: Dojo (Training Hall) 

The dojo is a special place for training the mind and body. In the dojo, budo practitioners must maintain discipline, and show proper courtesies and respect. The dojo should be a quiet, clean, safe and solemn environment. 

Article 5: Teaching 

Teachers of budo should always encourage others to also strive to better themselves and diligently train their minds and bodies, while continuing to further understanding of the technical principles of Budo. Teachers should not allow focus to be put on winning or losing in competition, or on technical ability alone. Above all, teachers have the responsibility to set an example as role models. 

Article 6: Promoting Budo 

Persons promoting budo must maintain an open-minded and international perspective as they uphold traditional values. They should make efforts to contribute to research and teaching, and do their utmost to advance budo in every way. " (Text and translation provided by the Nihon Budokan)

Budo nurtures and shapes our body and spirit. It is said that some practitioners go astray from the path and lose the spirit of Budo so it is always important to remember and read those articles as often as possible to reinforce our values and to keep us on the path. 




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