Meaning of the word karate
The word "karate" initially comes from the Okinawan pronunciation of the Chinese characters "kara", referring to China itself from the Chinese Tang dynasty, and "te" meaning hand:
The meaning, then, was "Chinese hand" or "Tang hand" or “Chinese fist” or "Chinese techniques": "Tang hand" in the sense of "Tang boxing" from the Chinese Tang dynasty or by extension, "Chinese hand" reflecting the Chinese influence on the style. In 1933, following Japan's invasion of eastern China in the period 1931-3, Gichin Funakoshi in Japan (known as the father of modern karate) changed the "kara" character in "karate" to a homonym denoting "emptiness".
By 1936 Funakoshi's second book had appeared, using the kara-as-emptiness character, and at a meeting of Okinawan masters the same meaning was adopted. Since then, the word "karate" (same pronunciation, different characters) has meant "empty hand".
The term "empty hand" carries with it Japanese Zen connotations: not just that the karate practitioner is carrying no weapon, but also the Zen process of perfecting oneself and one's art, by emptying the heart and mind of earthly desire and vanity. The "emptiness" suggested by the new ideogram refers to rendering oneself empty or egoless, to further development of spiritual insight. Funakoshi stated that the actual meaning of his writings are as follows: "As a mirror's polished surface reflects whatever stands before it and a quiet valley carries even small sounds, so must the student of Karate-Dō render of their mind empty of selfishness and wickedness in an effort to react appropriately toward anything they might encounter. This is the meaning of the kara or 'empty' of Karate-Dō."
The "do" suffix is used for various arts and implies that they are not just techniques but have spiritual elements. In this circumstance it is usually translated as "the way of" (cf. Aikido, Judo and Kendo). Thus, "karate-do" is "the way of the empty hand".
Funakoshi's philosophy has been inspirational to many generations of karate students; yet historically it's worth noting that in the climate of Japan in the 1930s, removing an explicit reference to China in the art's name may well have been a politically expedient move.
I'd say that one could argue that ATA Karate is utilizing the definition of "empty handed fighting." Either way I don't see why everyone is so quick to ridicule a kiddie TKD school -KF
What does "KK" stand for on these forums?
Are those like the forms in KK?
I believe "KK" is a common abbreviation of "Kyokushin Karate."
edit: damn. too slow.
Cuz they suck worse than the Maryland Throwdown Crew...
Originally Posted by KempoFist
Come on Der, arn't you just a little pissed that girls that stupid study your art? :icon_bigg
I mean, they think it's krotty because they chop things, and everything that chops things is karate. That's a little different than knowing the historical connections. :eng101:
Hey, Wingy Chingy...what part of "I do TKD for chicks" do you not understand?
I like that though...."Everything that chops is Karate"...there's some kinda Zen in that...
Well I do see the reasons why no adult would want to train at such a school, but as an Instructor I do see the benefits of martial arts for children in such an environment beyond the, "making dem into teh ultra d3@dly f1g4ting machines!"
Originally Posted by DerAuslander108
Kiddie Karate/MA schools do alot more for kids than mere fighting prowess (actually I don't think any of them actually teach kids to fight). And at that age certain things take higher precedent.
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