Truth is. Truth is independent of all other factors. Truth does not have considerations. Truth does not know “respect”. This means, as much as I may respect my teacher, it does not change the facts. It has no bearing on Truth.
My teacher may be a very skilled martial artist. He may be an accomplished fighter. The Truth may also be he has many failings as a human being. He may have given me incorrect information. He may have knowingly lied to me. All human beings have some orientation, many have actual agendas. If we embrace Truth, we must acknowledge all of this; the good and the bad. In fact, unless we take it all in, we limit our own view, our own growth.
I had a student who totally admired Mas Oyama. He watched a copy of the fictionalized film “Fighter in the Wind” (바람의 파이터). One day I was explaining this concept of Truth and used Mas Oyama as an example. My student got very upset, he said you have to “respect” such a famous teacher.
My student, in his youth, of course missed the point. Mas Oyama was obviously very skilled. It is without question that he trained many very skilled Karateka and fighters. Modern Japanese kickboxing and Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) both have direct links back to Mas Oyama and Kyokushinkai. Mas Oyama changed the face of modern Japanese martial arts.
Where Truth is concerned, none of those facts have anything to do with the reality that it is very likely that Mas Oyama did NOT engage in those many fights which have been attributed to him. Mas Oyama also spent considerable time in the Professional Wrestling and many of his marketing tactics came from that world. If you want more details on what I mean by this, google Jon Bluming….
People are always seeking an external authority. They do so because it alleviates them of the responsibility of thinking and taking responsibility for action. “Respect” is a crutch; we use it to avoid asking difficult questions and pondering the significance of Truth. Martial arts is certainly not the only place this happens, but it happens frequently in our world.