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Paul Herbert 5th Dan
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The Beginning of a Remarkable Journey…

Emma Robins

 

 

Two years ago Shaun and I pressed the ‘publish’ button on our first ever publication of The Shotokan Way. We were thinking it would be a nice hobby page that Shaun and I, and possibly a few friends would look at. We had no idea that it would turn in to what it is today, and would still be a dominant part of our lives.

 

Even when we completed our first ever interview, we weren’t really aware of how far TSW would come even over the following few months. We made a list of karate-ka and people that we would love to interview, like a fantasy football team, never thinking for one second that over the next 2 years we would still be working our way though, and adding to that list.

 

TSW has come so far in the last two years, but to be honest, what surprises me even more is how far Shaun and I have come, both as karate-ka and as people. Our physical karate has come very far, and not just from training with some amazing karate-ka and martial artists, and not only from interviewing and writing articles, but from conversing with some fantastically interesting and accessible people. Every person we have been lucky enough to have conversation with has taught us something, and we’ve become even more open-minded than we started out. We cannot wait to continue on this remarkable journey that we have taken our first steps on, and are eager to see where we’ll be in another two years times.

 

When we started the magazine, we did consider ourselves open-minded, if nothing else, but through meeting the people that we have, we have learned so much more than we ever imagined we would. We have met some people who have truly humbled us. When you see someone like Isaka Sensei doing 60 second push ups on iron geta, it’s difficult to feel anything but.

 

I always find myself floored by the sheer number of honest, good people we continue to meet, and how they all consider themselves to be eternal students, whether they are wearing a white belt, or a 7th Dan black belt. Sometimes you meet black belts who seem to have had a pinch of arrogance in the box with their black belt, but what is so fantastic, is that these power mad phonies are so greatly outnumbered by genuine, humble, eager and enthusiastic karateka.

 

We’ve met some truly incredible people, and made some truly incredible friends. I don’t use the word friend lightly, but some people that we have met have become very special to us, not only because they have taught us so much as karateka, but also because of what we learned from them as people.

 

Because of TSW Shaun and I have learned, laughed, screamed and sat, for many hours, thinking, writing, talking and changing. And if TSW has taught even one person the smallest thing, or made one person laugh, or even found one person a friend, then it’s far exceeded anything we could have ever hoped for it.

 

The day we published for the first time we wrote “Every time a butterfly flaps its wings, a breeze is felt the other side of the world. For every action comes re-action, a principle held dear in Karate-Do. Just as insignificant as a butterfly, or as important as a Politician, your actions affect others. We at The Shotokan Way want to help your actions become amplified and heard by the world. Everyone has an effect. Every time you kiai, a whisper will be heard the other side of the world.”

 

We have heard your whispers, and indeed your kiais. We thank you for hearing ours.

 

Emma Robins