By Rachel Matheney - FJJA

jujitsu099When many of us, as beginners in the Kokondo system, learn of the Code of Bushido, we often don't realize the significant role that it will play in our lives and how it will change and direct the person we become. I, myself, didn't realize how much it played a part in the development of my own growth as a Kokondo-ka or in the growth of others around me. That is, until it directly effected my life. The one code in specific that gave me these new revelations is Justice.

In Kokondo we "relate justice with equality." I read this in the website of my own dojo when I first began Jukido. I thought to myself, "Finally there is something that I would love to learn and will be appreciated, complimented, and recognized for myself, for the person I am and for what I can do as that person. Not for a girl, for a white person, or for a young lady but as a Kokondo-ka. This is the idealistic translation of this quote.

The one problem I had encountered after I read this on the website is that I expected to be treated like I was an equal and to be judge on only my ability as soon as I walked through the door. I also expected that when someone else walked through the door they would know this too, and of course, believed it. I was wrong!

Truly the Kokondo system is based on Justice in its truest form, but that doesn't mean that everyone comes into the system believing in it. One only gets what he or she wants to take out of it. No one can decide that for another person. But one who believes in Justice could hope to be a good example and influence for others to follow when making their decisions about such a sensitive topic.

RachelMatheneyKihon1BunkaiYou don't know quite how to take comments that are sexist. Comments like, "...she's good for a girl." or, "...especially for a girl." Some people don't even realize they're doing it or don't realize that it's wrong. I just learned to take these comments as signs of people's ignorance to the topic and tried to, instead of getting mad, to be understanding to their circumstances and what they might have grown up believing.

For those who don't understand why those comments above are offending, think of it this way, if you gave a male one of these comments, would he be flattered by it? No, he'd think you were trying to insult him. So why is it okay to give a female one of these comments, as if their skill is only comparable to other females.I made this one of my many goals, to make others understand and to make an influential example out of myself. So, when others would witness all that I have accomplished and continue to achieve, then they will understand that it is not the gender, race or any other defining feature of a human being. But it is the person that each of us chooses to be, that should be judged. It has seemed to work so far in some of my fellow classmates and I hope it will continue to work.

I only hope this article will help others to be encouraged to overcome any kind of injustice or that it will influence others to believe in Justice. For this is part of the backbone of the Kokondo system which is the code of Bushido. If one is to become the best Kokondo-ka they can be, they should strive to believe in them. They are an equal part of each Kokondo-ka's growth.