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In Japanese 尊重, Sonchô means respect.

It is composed of two kanji. The first one 尊 has the meaning of precious, or revered, or noble. The second one 重 has the meaning of piling up. Put together they mean respect. Now when the look up at the etymology of “respect” in Latin it means to look up (re-watch) at your elders to learn better. Respect is not something you acquire with rank. Being jugodan is not all. Respect cannot be created, it comes with time, experience, and excellence. Having the same rank doesn’t mean you have the same knowledge.

Also do not forget that you have to respect yourself in order to respect the others. Our daily attitude (kamae) is what makes people respect us as individuals.

Bujinkan practitioners should keep those two aspects in mind and be more respectful of the shihan who have been paving the way for them in order to transmit this fantastic martial art. Your 尊長, Sonchô, superiors, deserve it.

If not, this lack of respect will become 損朝, Sonchô, a lost period, a lost era, for the bujinkan.


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