"Since the fundamental principal acquired through the practice of Jujitsu has been elevated to a fine moral concept called Judo, ‘the way of gentleness’, it may well be said that the primary objective of practicing Judo is perfection of character. And to perfect one’s character, one must be grateful for the abundant blessings of Heaven, Earth and Nature, as well as for the great love of parents; one must realize his enormous debt to teachers and be ever mindful of his obligations to the general public.

As a member of a family, one’s first duty is to be filial to parents, to be helpful and harmonious with one’s wife or husband, and to be affectionate to brothers and sisters, so that the family may be a sound successful and harmonious unit of the community.

As a member of a nation one must be grateful for the protection which one derives as a citizen; one must guard against self-interest and foster a spirit of social service. One must be discreet in action, yet hold courage in high regard, and strive to cultivate manliness. One must be gentle, modest, polite, and resourceful; never eccentric, but striving always to practice moderation in all things. One must realize that these qualities constitute the secret of the practice of Judo

Anyone who practices Judo should have no fear of facing stronger opponents, nor should he scorn weaker ones. With the skill that he develops, he does not oppose the strength of his opponent. For example, if a boat is floating on water, then a single man’s strength is sufficient to maneuver it freely because the boat floats on top of the water. If the boat is on dry land, then even several men cannot move it. When a week person faces a strong one, he should understand this principal.

Having developed skill in the forms and techniques that constitute the basic art of Judo, one should never use these arts against anyone without sufficient justification. Therefore, refrain from arrogance and do not despise a small or weak opponent.

Every student of Judo should realize that sincerity is the foundation of all virtues that kindness is the secret of success in one’s work, and that amiability is essential to success. Working pleasantly is the mother of health. Strenuous effort and diligence will overcome adverse circumstances. Simplicity, fortitude, and vigor are the keys to happiness; and service to humanity is the foundation of mutual existence and common prosperity.

As aptly expressed in the poem ‘The boughs that bear hang lowest’, one should never forget the virtue of modesty as one attains proficiency in the art of Judo. Do not disdain or regard lightly either literary or military art; each is important and deserves equal cultivation and respect. Within constant motion and change there is tranquillity; and within tranquillity, there is motion and change. There is stillness in the midst of movement, and movement in the midst of stillness.

One must not forget parental love and one’s enormous indebtedness to teachers, nor fail to value those who come after us. Be grateful for the protection of Heaven and Earth. Be a good leader to younger students, to lead younger students well will in the long run mean to attain proficiency in the skill of Judo.

Like a drawing in India ink of the whispering of wind in the pines, the secrets of Judo can only be suggested. Only through personal experience can one comprehend the mystic ecstasy of such secrets. It is said of Jujitsu that it would require ten years of practice to win victory over one’s self and twenty years to win victory over others.

Whatever the trials or dangers, even ‘Hell under the upraised sword’, remain calm and remember the doctrine imparted to you by your teacher.

A noted verse reads: ‘For the lotus flower to fall is to rise to the surface’.

Only by cultivating a receptive state of mind, without preconceived ideas or thoughts, can one master the secret art of reacting spontaneously and naturally without hesitation and without purposeless resistance. Emptying the self, one enters into the realm of dispassion and openheartedness, and for the first time is able to comprehend the secret art of benefiting both oneself and others in perfect harmony.

These then are the keys to the esoteric secrets of Kodenkan into which I have had the honor to initiate you".

H. Seishiro Okazaki
Judo master
Director of Kodenkan

*This text is a translation of the hortative portions of a torah-no-maki or scroll diploma awarded to graduates of the Kodenkan American Judo Institute of Hawaii By Professor Henry
S. Okazaki.