The Warrior’s Way
When I was a decade into my karate practice, I moved to Japan for a year to study with the Okinawan masters. Though it’s been many years since then, the experience has never left me. Karate is more than a martial art; for dedicated followers, it’s a complete and holistic way of life. More than a simple physical practice, it’s an emotional and moral one as well. Bushido—the way of the warrior—is the deeply ingrained ethical code of the samurai. I use this framework not only in my work counseling elite athletes and with children at the North Shore Karate Center, but also in my psychotherapy practice, and in my own daily life as a man and father. The seven virtues associated with the Bushido code—rectitude, courage, benevolence, respect, honesty, honor, and loyalty—provide a comprehensive framework for living a moral life, but also for living a happy life. Combined with a physical discipline such as karate or any dedicated sports practice, I believe that living in “the warrior’s way” can help all of us deal with the frenetic and stressful nature of modern life. It can also help us to raise our kids to make good choices and live healthier, happier lives as adults.