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sensei8
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 12352
Location: Houston, TX and/or Van Nuys, CA
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2017 12:53 am    Post subject: Against My Better Judgement!! Reply with quote

Warning...this is a long post, forgive me. It was necessary because what I'm about to say couldn't be said in a paragraph or two. This is one of the most important decisions that I've ever made as Kaicho; the continuation of our Brand, SKKA, Shindokan, and Hombu is at those crossroads. Should I or shouldn't I??

The week of January 4th this year, I was requested to come to our Hombu for a weeks worth of highly heated meetings by our newly elected members of our SKKA's Higher Hierarchy.

These newly elected officers of our SKKA were chosen out of our stock of Senior Dan Ranks in order to fill up the following positions:

*Kancho [1]
*Regents [5]

This link will explain why we've newly elected Higher Hierarchy...

http://www.karateforums.com/tragedy-envelopes-the-skka-vt49781.html?highlight=tragedy

Each of these new Higher Hierarchy officers are highly qualified across the board. Ever since that they've been in their newly found positions, they've done quite a remarkable job of keeping the betterment of our Student Body as a top priority, as well as keeping both our Soke and Dai-Soke legacy's alive and at the foremost front of the SKKA.

As I mentioned at the very start of this post, our meetings that week were like being in the middle of a earthquake and a hurricane, all at the same time, very tumultuous, to say the least. I walked out of half of the meetings because what they were wanting to do, was, imho, counterproductive, and like a slap in the face of where the SKKA once was, where the SKKA is at nowadays, and where the SKKA is trying to reach.

My position within the SKKA is the Kaicho, and in short, that means that the buck stops with me, therefore, everyone reports to me. As one might imagine, it's can be quite lonely at the top!! Here's why they've asked me to attend these particular meetings...

The reinstatement of Iwao Takahashi!! WHAT?? NO WAY!!

Who's Iwao Takahashi?? He once was part of the SKKA!! He is the son of our Dai-Soke!! He was once the SKKA's San Dai-Soke as appointed by Dai-Soke!! He was promoted to Judan per our By-Laws, based on his Soke appointment by Dai-Soke!! He once, and without any fanfare or notice, closed the SKKA in the hopes of moving it back to Okinawa!! He's been stripped of his Soke authority!! He's been expelled from the SKKA!!

My question to them is...WHY? Why would you want him back?? So that he can finally finish off the SKKA?? So that he can get his hands back on power and authority?? Have you all lost your minds?? Excuse me, but are all of you that shortsighted?? Do you guys even care about the SKKA and/or its Student Body and/or our history, and more importantly, our continued future??

Here are some links explaining why I don't want him to darken the doors of the SKKA, now or ever!!

http://www.karateforums.com/a-pocket-full-of-marbles-vt42305.html?highlight=takahashi
http://www.karateforums.com/not-on-my-watch-vt43752.html?highlight=takahashi
http://www.karateforums.com/this-might-be-the-beginning-of-the-end-vt40015.html?highlight=takahashi

Hopefully, these links might explain some things, as to why I'm apprehensive, and appalled at their suggestion.

Somehow and someway, I found some calmness, but not much, in order to allow them to explain to me why they're steering in this direction. One wrong movement of the SKKA steering wheel, and that's all she wrote...it would all be over faster than one can blink.

Here's their logic, or the lack thereof...

The SKKA lost 6 very important members of its Higher Hierarchy in a blink of an eye. While we're trying to renew that which was lost, things will never be the same, and perhaps, it's not suppose to. As tragic as their loss was, it literally ripped out the core fiber of the SKKA. It's bad enough to lose Soke and Dai-Soke, but to lose those 6 on top of it, was a blow of gigantic proportions.

They expressed their support of my position, and were very thankful that I wasn't with them, and that had I been with them, there's a chance that I would've shared their same fate.

Those 6 knew Shindokan...they knew the SKKA...they knew the most intimate things of the SKKA, as well as Shindokan...they knew Soke and Dai-Soke...they knew the very intimate and private inner circle that was of Soke and Dai-Soke. Yes, they assured me, I knew those very same things, and possibly, even more so.

However, the puzzle is desperately missing a piece...Iwao Takahashi!! His Shindokan knowledge is without dispute. His SKKA knowledge is without dispute. His deeply relationship with his father, Dai-Soke, is without dispute. He can positively compliment me in my official capacity as Kaicho.

When the cat's away, the mouse do play. This is what they've been doing while I'm out of house. That tells me that I need to be more in house than I've been.

I asked them, in what capacity would he assume, if any, at all?? Chief Instructor!!

Really??

Here are my conditions:

1> If allowed, he'd still have no authority!!

2> If allowed, he'd not be eligible for election as a SKKA officer!!

3> If allowed, he'd have no voting privileges whatsoever!!

4> If allowed, he'd resume teaching, and everything that is necessary to be the CI of the SKKA/Hombu!!

5> If allowed, he'd only be permitted to close door meetings of the SKKA if it pertains to the curriculum/syllabus!!

6> If allowed, he'd be enrolled in a Personal Improvement Plan [PIP], and would have to pass its 3 months, one month at a time. Failure of any stage, would bring upon a complete termination across the board!!

7> If allowed, he'd have no access to sensitive materials and the like, including our Densho Scrolls and the like, including our Inkan Stamps, including the Hard Card Files of our Student Body, including one officer of the Higher Hierarchy must accompany him in order to view said documentations as well as to those instrument(s) in the course of his duties and responsibilities as the CI, as well as, we reserve the right to amend these stipulations at our discretion without prior notifications, and the like.

8> If allowed, he'd no longer be addressed in any shape, way, and/or form as to any Soke entitlement, including, and specifically, as San Dai-Soke, now, and forever.

9> If allowed, he must formally apologize to the entire Student Body in an open meeting at the Hombu, at a date to be later determined, as well as in a notarized formal letter, to be distributed by and to the SKKA network.

10> If allowed, he will not be qualified to assume any position within the SKKA/Hombu/Shindokan that would provide him the abilities to close the SKKA and/or the Hombu, and/or granting him, in a manner and/or matter of those abilities that would threaten the demise of the SKKA/Hombu/Shindokan.

11> If allowed, he will not have any level of ownership of the Shindokan Brand and/or the SKKA and/or the Hombu.

12> If allowed, he will NOT retain his Judan; however, he's recognized as a Hachidan, as well as the Shogo title of Hanshi, as awarded to him by Soke and Dai-Soke.

13> If allowed, I reserve the right to add, amend, discard any other stipulations at my discretion without prior notification, and my position as Kaicho permits me to such actions without approval of any department, including, but not limited to, our Higher Hierarchy.

This being said, I've submitted these stipulations formally to our Kancho, Regents, Administrative Team, Executive Team, and our Legal Team. Our Legal Team will draft the contract(s), as well as to my required stipulations, and the like, so as to put all of our departments desires and stipulations in Legalese terms these will be quite binding to the Nth degree.

Once that's been completed, I'll fly back to the Hombu to conduct both a closed meeting with the above mentioned departments and Iwao, and in an open meeting for the signing of said documents in front of quite a many witnesses. Both of these meetings will be recorded via voice as well as video, including transcribes of both, for everyone's protections.

If Iwao scoffs at anything, then he's not welcomed back. Before I present said documents, our Legal Team and all departments will iron them out until there's no ambiguity and/or reservation...in short, assuring all of our 't's' are crossed, and all of our 'i's' are dotted, and that all departments are satisfied 100%. We'll not go forward with their request of me until I'm 1000% assured as to the protection of our Student Body, the SKKA, the Hombu, Shindokan, and our Brand.

Like I said, this is against my better judgement, but how can I insist that someone else embrace change if I'm unwilling to do so myself. I once said that what I'm considering, it would never ever happen on my watch. Again, if I'm not willing to forgive, then how can I ask forgiveness for myself. Am I scared to death that I've given away the whole enchilada by a lapse of my better judgement??

Man, am I just stupid!?! I hope not!!

I welcome any comments, suggestions, and advice good or bad from any KF member. Thank you, in advance!!



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The Pred
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Joined: 26 Jun 2003
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2017 8:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Seems intense,

So I looked through the old posts, and it seems like his last rank before his rank skip to Judan was Nanadan. So wouldn't he go back to that rank, or did he get tested for Hachidan at some point? (Skipping Dan ranks to me just seemed ridiculous but that's just me)
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JR 137
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2017 8:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You're not stupid. I'd not allow him back, according to everything that was previously stated (I didn't read the links, as I remember quite enough).

Looking at it through their lens, they probably feel that with the loss of the gentlemen came a loss in knowledge of the art. I imagine they'd like to restore as much of it as possible. I respect the motive. I don't respect the method however. I doubt they fully understand all that went on, as they weren't behind closed doors to see, hear, and feel it all (don't get me wrong, either was I!).

Perhaps calmly explaining Shindokan will never be exactly what it was when Soke was alive, Dai-Soke was alive, and the 6 gentlemen were alive will help them ease up a bit. With every loss of life comes a loss of knowledge and experience. But bringing back a person who brought negative to the organization and art definitely won't fill that void.

With every passing of a leader comes some doubt. People may feel it impossible to carry on that person's (or people's) legacy. Rather than trying to resurrect something that's clearly not in the best interest of anyone, the art and organization must evolve. Bringing San Dai-Soke isn't resurrecting the leader they think it is.

Remember this, above all else when I say what I'm about to say - I'M ON YOUR SIDE. Again, I'M ON YOUR SIDE...

They're looking for a leader. You're not there Day in and day out. They've been around for quite some time, and possibly were leaders of their own dojo or even honbu. But they weren't true leaders of the entire organization. They feel like they've been thrown into the deep end alone right now. Had you packed up and moved to honbu permanently, bringing him back may quite well have never came up.

You haven't done anything wrong. You shouldn't feel forced to move your family cross-country because these guys have their insecurities. But they have insecurities. Your job as kaicho is to ease these insecurities. Perhaps more communication is in order. Perhaps a different type of communication is in order, such as video conferencing. Perhaps more consistent communication is in order. Probably a combination of all of the above.

Meet with them in person. If that's impossible in the very near future, video conference them. Ask them hypothetically "what will San Dai-Soke fix?" "if San Dai-Soke were to not accept the invitation, what would you do?" Listen to their answers. Don't think about counters to their answers, but actually listen fully and without anyone (you nor the others) interrupting. Every single one of them. Also let them know in a nice way that bringing him back undermines everything the board did, and goes against what they stood for. Dai-Soke made an unforseen mistake. It won't be unforeseen if it occurs again.

To me it seems like part of the grieving process and fallout from the tragedy.

Things are out of balance. If you're who I'm pretty sure you are, you'll restore that balance. It won't be an easy thing nor a one time fix. But so long as there's moving parts, balance always has to be maintained. They need more hand holding as they're genuinely new to all of this. Hold their hands until they're confident enough to let go and cross the street on their own.

Just my opinions.
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sensei8
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Joined: 23 Feb 2008
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Location: Houston, TX and/or Van Nuys, CA
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2017 3:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Pred wrote:
Seems intense,

So I looked through the old posts, and it seems like his last rank before his rank skip to Judan was Nanadan. So wouldn't he go back to that rank, or did he get tested for Hachidan at some point? (Skipping Dan ranks to me just seemed ridiculous but that's just me)

This is true; his current rank is still Nanadan, ever since his Judan has long since been expunged, as well as his Soke entitlement. The proposition, should he be allowed to return, is to test him for his Hachidan in this years Annual Testing Cycle in June/July. Should he fail, he'd still be the CI based on the fact that he meets every other qualification. The CI, is preferred to be a Hachidan, but, Nanadan is acceptable, just not preferred.



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DWx
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Joined: 17 Jan 2007
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Styles: Tae Kwon Do & Yang family Tai Chi

PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2017 4:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

JR 137 wrote:
You're not stupid. I'd not allow him back, according to everything that was previously stated (I didn't read the links, as I remember quite enough).

Looking at it through their lens, they probably feel that with the loss of the gentlemen came a loss in knowledge of the art. I imagine they'd like to restore as much of it as possible. I respect the motive. I don't respect the method however. I doubt they fully understand all that went on, as they weren't behind closed doors to see, hear, and feel it all (don't get me wrong, either was I!).

Perhaps calmly explaining Shindokan will never be exactly what it was when Soke was alive, Dai-Soke was alive, and the 6 gentlemen were alive will help them ease up a bit. With every loss of life comes a loss of knowledge and experience. But bringing back a person who brought negative to the organization and art definitely won't fill that void.

With every passing of a leader comes some doubt. People may feel it impossible to carry on that person's (or people's) legacy. Rather than trying to resurrect something that's clearly not in the best interest of anyone, the art and organization must evolve. Bringing San Dai-Soke isn't resurrecting the leader they think it is.

Remember this, above all else when I say what I'm about to say - I'M ON YOUR SIDE. Again, I'M ON YOUR SIDE...

They're looking for a leader. You're not there Day in and day out. They've been around for quite some time, and possibly were leaders of their own dojo or even honbu. But they weren't true leaders of the entire organization. They feel like they've been thrown into the deep end alone right now. Had you packed up and moved to honbu permanently, bringing him back may quite well have never came up.

You haven't done anything wrong. You shouldn't feel forced to move your family cross-country because these guys have their insecurities. But they have insecurities. Your job as kaicho is to ease these insecurities. Perhaps more communication is in order. Perhaps a different type of communication is in order, such as video conferencing. Perhaps more consistent communication is in order. Probably a combination of all of the above.

Meet with them in person. If that's impossible in the very near future, video conference them. Ask them hypothetically "what will San Dai-Soke fix?" "if San Dai-Soke were to not accept the invitation, what would you do?" Listen to their answers. Don't think about counters to their answers, but actually listen fully and without anyone (you nor the others) interrupting. Every single one of them. Also let them know in a nice way that bringing him back undermines everything the board did, and goes against what they stood for. Dai-Soke made an unforseen mistake. It won't be unforeseen if it occurs again.

To me it seems like part of the grieving process and fallout from the tragedy.

Things are out of balance. If you're who I'm pretty sure you are, you'll restore that balance. It won't be an easy thing nor a one time fix. But so long as there's moving parts, balance always has to be maintained. They need more hand holding as they're genuinely new to all of this. Hold their hands until they're confident enough to let go and cross the street on their own.

Just my opinions.

Great post JR, all good points

Bob, I feel for you in this situation. It sounds like change is needed but is this the right direction?

Does your former San Dai Soke Iwao Takahashi even want to come back? Have your colleagues opened the line of communication with him? I have to say that your list of conditions are pretty binding so would he want to come back when he has no real authority?
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sensei8
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Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 12352
Location: Houston, TX and/or Van Nuys, CA
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2017 6:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

JR 137 wrote:
You're not stupid. I'd not allow him back, according to everything that was previously stated (I didn't read the links, as I remember quite enough).

While I greatly appreciate what you're saying to me, it's still to be seen if I'm stupid or not. Perhaps, I'm stupid for allowing this process to even continue.

JR 137 wrote:
Looking at it through their lens, they probably feel that with the loss of the gentlemen came a loss in knowledge of the art. I imagine they'd like to restore as much of it as possible. I respect the motive. I don't respect the method however. I doubt they fully understand all that went on, as they weren't behind closed doors to see, hear, and feel it all (don't get me wrong, either was I!).

Their lens isn't clouded as much as we might imagine. The lose of knowledge was in the excess of over 300 years, and that will leave quite a large empty gap, especially all at the same time, instead of a gradual depletion.

I'm with you when you say that you respect their motive, but not their method. I believe that I owe them a consideration of their request(s) because they've earned that by having been duly elected into their current offices. First time I walked out of the meetings that week, I wasn't professional in my demeanor at all, as I turned the air blue with some unchristian colorful metaphors at, what I considered, their unqualified requests of me.

JR 137 wrote:
Perhaps calmly explaining Shindokan will never be exactly what it was when Soke was alive, Dai-Soke was alive, and the 6 gentlemen were alive will help them ease up a bit. With every loss of life comes a loss of knowledge and experience. But bringing back a person who brought negative to the organization and art definitely won't fill that void.

This I've already done, several times, and calmly, as well. As I've reminded them, more than once, that whenever one brings back a bull into our china closet...again...is irresponsible, considering that this same bull destroyed our china closet once before, and without any consideration as to Soke and Dai-Soke, our Brand, our SKKA, our Hombu, as well as our Student Body!!

JR 137 wrote:
With every passing of a leader comes some doubt. People may feel it impossible to carry on that person's (or people's) legacy. Rather than trying to resurrect something that's clearly not in the best interest of anyone, the art and organization must evolve. Bringing San Dai-Soke isn't resurrecting the leader they think it is.

Very solid post!! Bringing him back does bring back knowledge...intimate knowledge of a many things because, again, he's technically qualified, it's just that he's not sensitively qualified.

I do have to stress, in his defense, and sorry, I've just threw up in my mouth for defending him at this very moment, none of us know what was spoken between father and son in the privacy of behind closed doors on his fathers death bed. We can assume and speculate all we want to, but until we know for sure, we'll never ever know. In the past, we've discussed this among ourselves as to what might've been said. Perhaps, Dai-Soke asked his son, Iwao Takahashi, to close and move the Hombu to Okinawa soil, and Iwao had to fulfill his fathers request on his death bed.

I don't know what loyalty was fulfilled, if any, and I don't know because I'm not either of them, and I don't pretend that I do, and I wasn't in the room. I know that Dai-Soke, having been born and raised in Okinawa, taught his children both cultures, to always respect both cultures, and in the culture of Okinawa, refusing a parents request, especially on owns death bed, is dishonorable, and that wasn't ever going to happen. I doubt that being raised by Dai-Soke wasn't always a picnic; being torn between two cultures.

JR 137 wrote:
Remember this, above all else when I say what I'm about to say - I'M ON YOUR SIDE. Again, I'M ON YOUR SIDE...

I greatly appreciate your support, and these aren't idle words!!

JR 137 wrote:
They're looking for a leader. You're not there Day in and day out. They've been around for quite some time, and possibly were leaders of their own dojo or even honbu. But they weren't true leaders of the entire organization. They feel like they've been thrown into the deep end alone right now. Had you packed up and moved to honbu permanently, bringing him back may quite well have never came up.

They've a leader in me, and they've stipulated that often. While it's true, that I'm not in house except whenever it's required and/or once every quarter. That's why we've recently elected a Kancho; to oversee the daily operations in my absence.

It is true that they're in house, but, to them, it's only been a quick blink, yet, they're in house, and facing the trials and tribulations on their own, and without me being present. Each of them still own their own dojo, and it's true, they weren't part of the SKKA/Hombu's daily operations in any leadership capacity, nor was it ever expected of them by prior administration and the like. I'm not quite so sure that the deep end isn't as deep as many might imagine. It can be quite a daunting task to consume daily, however, they're not alone, not even close.

JR 137 wrote:
You haven't done anything wrong. You shouldn't feel forced to move your family cross-country because these guys have their insecurities. But they have insecurities. Your job as kaicho is to ease these insecurities. Perhaps more communication is in order. Perhaps a different type of communication is in order, such as video conferencing. Perhaps more consistent communication is in order. Probably a combination of all of the above.

I appreciate your kind words, again, thank you!! I'm not feeling forced by them at all as to why I'm more out of house, than in house. It's what it is, and they fully understand as to why it is as it is for the time being. I've not been in house for quite along time, and this was permitted by both Soke and Dai-Soke eons ago; ever since 1994 to care for my mom.

I agree in your summation about their insecurities, and that that's my job; to ease all insecurities. For me to do that, those whom I'm trying to ease all insecurities, they have to want me to help them first. Otherwise, I'm only the elephant in the room.

Our current communications is stellar...too notch!! How so? On a normal schedule(s), I call them twice a week...we video conference once per week...we video conference quarterly with all departmental heads...they FedEx me weekly/quarterly/annually documentations, and the like, for either my review and/or my signature and/or my instructions. We've had the stream of communications ever since 1994, and over the years, that communications on a technical side, has vastly improved. All of this doesn't take into considerations how often we call one another off and away from the schedule(s), and many of these are just to shoot the breeze about anything and everything that's not business related.

They all know that I'm there for them whenever they need it; I'm just a phone call or plane ride away...I'm at their beg and call...I'm there for everyone...I've an wide open door!!

JR 137 wrote:
Meet with them in person. If that's impossible in the very near future, video conference them. Ask them hypothetically "what will San Dai-Soke fix?" "if San Dai-Soke were to not accept the invitation, what would you do?" Listen to their answers. Don't think about counters to their answers, but actually listen fully and without anyone (you nor the others) interrupting. Every single one of them. Also let them know in a nice way that bringing him back undermines everything the board did, and goes against what they stood for. Dai-Soke made an unforseen mistake. It won't be unforeseen if it occurs again.

I've meet with them in person, just this very month alone, and not with just the officers of our Higher Hierarchy, but with the Hombu's Student Body...in fact, I ran several classes myself while I was in house. I also visited several Shindokan dojo's during the week I was in California.

The questions you've poised here, have been asked to those concerned and interested parties. And I've listened quite wholeheartedly to them all!! Their formal answers were as...to the first question..."What will San Dai-Soke fix?" Their response was..."Continuity of acquired intimate knowledge. Knowledge that has been ripped away violently at the passing of our friends." To the second question..."If San Dai-Soke were to not accept the invitation, what would you do?"..."Nothing. Your decision is final!! We're only thinking about what he might return to us. We've no idea just what, exactly, he might resurrect until it happens"

JR 137 wrote:
To me it seems like part of the grieving process and fallout from the tragedy.

I agree! I'm holding everything together with bailing wire, gum, and duck tape.

JR 137 wrote:
Things are out of balance. If you're who I'm pretty sure you are, you'll restore that balance. It won't be an easy thing nor a one time fix. But so long as there's moving parts, balance always has to be maintained. They need more hand holding as they're genuinely new to all of this. Hold their hands until they're confident enough to let go and cross the street on their own.

Just my opinions.

I believe, as you do, that in time, that balance will be restored. It'll take each and everyone of us to accomplish it, but it's doable. I got their back and they've got my back!! This is reassuring to me because had this been the others, they would've fought me to the Nth degree until one side of the other would've weakened and surrendered. These new officers aren't of that same stock. Don't get me wrong, I love them, and they love me, and we all miss them terribly, but they, like I, love a good fight, and we won't back away from a good fight, especially if we're convinced that our stand is right. Oftentimes, all of us acted dysfunctional.

Thanks, JR!! Your opinions are valued, and I thank you for them!!



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MatsuShinshii
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Styles: Matsumura Shorin Ryu, Ryukyu Kenpo, Kobudo

PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2017 6:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow! And I thought we had a lot of politics in our organization!

I am a little fuzzy on the facts so if you would be kind enough to clarify a few things...

In reading the posts I am not 100% clear on how your San Dai-Soke was promoted to that position. Did he receive a Menkyo Kaiden from his father? Who promoted him to the grade of Judan?

I also saw that he was originally a Nanadan and only had a Kyoshi license which didn't seem to change after he was appointed Soke and graded to Judan. That seems very strange to me to be awarded Judan but not receive a Hanshi license.

I know of one Soke that maintained his grading of Hachidan and continued to study under his then instructor, his father passed, and went through his grading's as any other would. Of course his teaching licenses were done in the same fashion. But to me it seems highly unusual to receive the grading of Judan, the position of Soke and to have a Kyoshi license.

How exactly did the Hierarchy expel him from his organization? I get your bylaws had rulings for an absence but this confuses me as my Shinshii would only have maybe one or two phone conversations with his Shinshii and only visit him at the Hombu in Okinawa maybe once a year.

The other item I don't get is what was the issue with moving the Hombu to Okinawa and was he doing away with the USA schools completely?

In my mind, moving the Hombu to Okinawa is consistent with most Okinawan arts and having a head quarters in other countries that oversee the schools in that country is consistent as well. I would think that if he was deemed the successor of the art by the last Soke he would be able to do with it as he wished. I would think he would maintain the heirarchy in the USA and make the Hombu the headquarters. I would also think that all positions would be maintained at least for the US. But to be honest I would think he would maintain most if not all of the hierarchy within the organization, unless there are those in Okinawa that out rank and have higher positions/titles/licenses than those here in the US. Just doesn't make sense for him to make such an unexpected move without fully thinking through it and having a plan in place as to not loose his entire US student body.

I am also fuzzy on how his position and grade were removed. It has always been my understanding that once a grade, title, license is awarded/granted, especially by the past Soke, it can not be removed except by the Soke. How exactly does one go about striping someone from his heritage and lineage? How does one go about taking away any rights to his own organizations name? I could see starting a separate organization as this is what my Shinshii did when his passed away. He did not get along with the son so he started his own.

How many students/instructors are there in Okinawa? Is the totality of the student body here in the US? Did your first Soke have his Hombu in Okinawa and if so how did it get moved to the US? Was it due to the number of high ranking instructors here as apposed to Okinawa and else where? I am just very confused as to why Dai-Soke would want his son to move the Hombu if he did not move it when he had control. It really doesn't compute why he would want to move it if there is not a large presence on Okinawa. It's not like your going to move there and open up shop among the plethora of other arts and expect to build fast enough to get to current numbers or even half of those numbers. Sounds to me he romanced about having a Hombu in Okinawa himself. I would think he moved over there and found that it was not going to be that cut and dry.

I am sure you may have other posts that outline some of my questions but as I said I am not crystal clear as to all of the hows and why's.

P.S. I do not envy your position. This is in part why I couldn't wait to step down as president of our board. If I could I would walk away from all politics all together and just teach and study the art. Oh the good old days of just enjoying the art.
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sensei8
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2017 7:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

DWx wrote:
JR 137 wrote:
You're not stupid. I'd not allow him back, according to everything that was previously stated (I didn't read the links, as I remember quite enough).

Looking at it through their lens, they probably feel that with the loss of the gentlemen came a loss in knowledge of the art. I imagine they'd like to restore as much of it as possible. I respect the motive. I don't respect the method however. I doubt they fully understand all that went on, as they weren't behind closed doors to see, hear, and feel it all (don't get me wrong, either was I!).

Perhaps calmly explaining Shindokan will never be exactly what it was when Soke was alive, Dai-Soke was alive, and the 6 gentlemen were alive will help them ease up a bit. With every loss of life comes a loss of knowledge and experience. But bringing back a person who brought negative to the organization and art definitely won't fill that void.

With every passing of a leader comes some doubt. People may feel it impossible to carry on that person's (or people's) legacy. Rather than trying to resurrect something that's clearly not in the best interest of anyone, the art and organization must evolve. Bringing San Dai-Soke isn't resurrecting the leader they think it is.

Remember this, above all else when I say what I'm about to say - I'M ON YOUR SIDE. Again, I'M ON YOUR SIDE...

They're looking for a leader. You're not there Day in and day out. They've been around for quite some time, and possibly were leaders of their own dojo or even honbu. But they weren't true leaders of the entire organization. They feel like they've been thrown into the deep end alone right now. Had you packed up and moved to honbu permanently, bringing him back may quite well have never came up.

You haven't done anything wrong. You shouldn't feel forced to move your family cross-country because these guys have their insecurities. But they have insecurities. Your job as kaicho is to ease these insecurities. Perhaps more communication is in order. Perhaps a different type of communication is in order, such as video conferencing. Perhaps more consistent communication is in order. Probably a combination of all of the above.

Meet with them in person. If that's impossible in the very near future, video conference them. Ask them hypothetically "what will San Dai-Soke fix?" "if San Dai-Soke were to not accept the invitation, what would you do?" Listen to their answers. Don't think about counters to their answers, but actually listen fully and without anyone (you nor the others) interrupting. Every single one of them. Also let them know in a nice way that bringing him back undermines everything the board did, and goes against what they stood for. Dai-Soke made an unforseen mistake. It won't be unforeseen if it occurs again.

To me it seems like part of the grieving process and fallout from the tragedy.

Things are out of balance. If you're who I'm pretty sure you are, you'll restore that balance. It won't be an easy thing nor a one time fix. But so long as there's moving parts, balance always has to be maintained. They need more hand holding as they're genuinely new to all of this. Hold their hands until they're confident enough to let go and cross the street on their own.

Just my opinions.

Great post JR, all good points

Bob, I feel for you in this situation. It sounds like change is needed but is this the right direction?

Does your former San Dai Soke Iwao Takahashi even want to come back? Have your colleagues opened the line of communication with him? I have to say that your list of conditions are pretty binding so would he want to come back when he has no real authority?

Thank you, Danielle; I appreciate your support immensely!!

Quote:
It sounds like change is needed but is this the right direction?

I'll try not to answer this without attached emotions, if I can. No!! This isn't needed, nor is it welcomed, and nor is it warranted; not in the very slightest.

Quote:
Does your former San Dai Soke Iwao Takahashi even want to come back?

According to our current officers, and unfortunately, yes, he does. He's sorry!! He apologizes!!

Quote:
Have your colleagues opened the line of communication with him?

Long time ago; since early November!! That's what I meant by when I say...when the cat's away, the mouse do play...and on my watch!! They tried to tell me, but each time, I would just shut them down. I've not asked, nor do I really care, who called whom...first?! That question might not be that important in the scheme of things.

Quote:
I have to say that your list of conditions are pretty binding so would he want to come back when he has no real authority?

Yes, my conditions/stipulations are quite binding; they're meant to be so there's no misunderstandings whatsoever...no ambiguity. To be quite frank and to the point, I don't give a bent pin what he thinks and/or wants and/or if he's the authority of a snowflake in you know where.

"Ultra vires: Beyond the powers or authority" and "Absens haeres non erit: Out of sight, out of mind." These two phrases as written in our By-laws explain that the Iwao no longer has any powers and/or authority at the Hombu because of his actions of abandonment of both duties and responsibilities, that he was duly and properly elected to, in that, he failed to uphold his obligations for the entire betterment of the Hombu and the Student Body. He don't like it? Good!! It's no longer for him to say so, one way or another. He made the bed, now he can lie in it, for all I care.

::Breath Bob::




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PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2017 9:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MatsuShinshii wrote:
Wow! And I thought we had a lot of politics in our organization!

LOL!! I think we all have our share of politics. However, I'd say ours, at times, like now, are without sane reason(s).

MatsuShinshii wrote:
I am a little fuzzy on the facts so if you would be kind enough to clarify a few things...

I'll try to clear away the fuzzy facts to the best of my abilities, but without a lot of long details, if I can.

MatsuShinshii wrote:
In reading the posts I am not 100% clear on how your San Dai-Soke was promoted to that position. Did he receive a Menkyo Kaiden from his father? Who promoted him to the grade of Judan?

By any chance, did you read the links found in my OP??

Irregardless of that, Iwao Takahashi is the son of our Dai-Soke, Yoshinobu Takahashi. Iwao was promoted to San Dai-Soke by his father, just before he passed away, just after suffering his second stoke. Therefore, Iwao's promotion to San Dai-Soke was from his father, and Dai-Soke, Yoshinobu Takahashi.

No, Iwao DID NOT receive a Menkyo Kaiden from his father!! There has only been one Menkyo Kaiden in our history, and that was Dai-Soke, as it was bestowed upon him by our Soke, shortly after Soke retired.

Iwao's Judan was granted from our By-Laws, which state, that whomever is to become a Soke type, that individual is automatically awarded Judan!! This is similar as to how it us to be, whenever someone was elected to be Kaicho, that individual was automatically awarded Kudan, per the By-Laws. I didn't write the original By-Laws, as you can imagine; Soke and Dai-Soke wrote it.

MatsuShinshii wrote:
I also saw that he was originally a Nanadan and only had a Kyoshi license which didn't seem to change after he was appointed Soke and graded to Judan. That seems very strange to me to be awarded Judan but not receive a Hanshi license.

I know of one Soke that maintained his grading of Hachidan and continued to study under his then instructor, his father passed, and went through his grading's as any other would. Of course his teaching licenses were done in the same fashion. But to me it seems highly unusual to receive the grading of Judan, the position of Soke and to have a Kyoshi license.

Once he became the San Dai-Soke, his Judan paperwork was immediately completed. However, that's not how things work in the SKKA. Yes, per our By-Laws, in the past, any individual who obtains a Soke entitlement is automatically promoted to Judan. Nonetheless, Shogo titles, like Hanshi, are never bestowed upon any individual through any designs within our By-Laws. No, they, Shogo titles, must be bestowed to an individual, and this can only be done by the Soke type. In short, Dai-Soke had passed away before he could bestow Iwao his Hanshi on him. Albeit, no Soke type can bestow any Shogo title upon themselves!! Nowadays, those Shogo titles have to be bestowed upon said individual by Kaicho, Kancho, and the Regents, and their nominations, as well as their votes, must be unanimous. Otherwise, no Shogo title...NO Hanshi for him!!

MatsuShinshii wrote:
How exactly did the Hierarchy expel him from his organization? I get your bylaws had rulings for an absence but this confuses me as my Shinshii would only have maybe one or two phone conversations with his Shinshii and only visit him at the Hombu in Okinawa maybe once a year.

His actions expelled him!! He closes the SKKA/Hombu shortly after his father passes away...he disappears for a long time...he lies to us as to the relocation plans and why...he takes everything out of the Hombu...we Amend our By-Laws, and start anew...without him. Good riddance!!

MatsuShinshii wrote:
The other item I don't get is what was the issue with moving the Hombu to Okinawa and was he doing away with the USA schools completely?

In my mind, moving the Hombu to Okinawa is consistent with most Okinawan arts and having a head quarters in other countries that oversee the schools in that country is consistent as well. I would think that if he was deemed the successor of the art by the last Soke he would be able to do with it as he wished. I would think he would maintain the heirarchy in the USA and make the Hombu the headquarters. I would also think that all positions would be maintained at least for the US. But to be honest I would think he would maintain most if not all of the hierarchy within the organization, unless there are those in Okinawa that out rank and have higher positions/titles/licenses than those here in the US. Just doesn't make sense for him to make such an unexpected move without fully thinking through it and having a plan in place as to not loose his entire US student body.

I can't answer this completely because no one knows the true reasons why Iwao closed the SKKA/Hombu and/or why he did what he did leading up to his disappearing act; we just know that one day we were here, and the next day, we weren't by his authority. No one knows what was said between him and his father shortly before his father passed away; their conversation was a private one. So as to the who, what, where, when, why, and how remain unknown to us. All we know is that it happened.

Originally, he told us, at the instructions of his father, his must close the US Hombu, and open a brand new Hombu in Nanjo, Okinawa. That's the city that both Soke and Dai-Soke were born in. Here's what we think, yet, we've no facts to back up our assumptions...we think that Dai-Soke instructed him to move his body BACK TO OKINAWA after he passes away...he wanted to return to Nanjo, and not to be buried anywhere else. Both Soke and Dai-Soke are buried in Nanjo, Okinawa!!

So, in our opinion, he used what his father instructed him...twisted it around so that he could do unspeakable things to the SKKA/Hombu and its Student Body!! Of course, this is only hearsay and conjecture on our part.

According to Iwao, there were not going to be any USA Hombu, but only a Okinawa Hombu. In the USA, there were to only be dojo's, and no Hombu. All Testing Cycles would be conducted at the individual dojo's, and as far as Godan and above Testing Cycles, those were going to be held at a central dojo, to be named later. This never occurred because he closed shop and took all of his toys home with him to not be seen again.

We even sent a team to Okinawa to locate him, but to no avail, we didn't find him anywhere!! Before, now, he was living in Hayward, CA...that's where he went to college back in the 1980's or 1990's.

Many of the things that you spoke about in these two noted paragraphs, are of the norm. However, Iwao's actions weren't of norm, imho!! Sure, as a Soke type, he can do whatever he wants to, whenever he wants to, and he owns everything in the Hombu...EVERYTHING!! Sick and twisted, that describes him to the letter, imho!! This is why we've eliminated both Soke types as well as the attainment of Judan...that was then, this is now!!

The SKKA and/or the Hombu were not your normal governing body. It was Soke's desire to not be controlled by the powers that be in Okinawa. He wanted to be his own individual, and to not bow to the Karate powers that be in Okinawa. That's why he and Dai-Soke moved to the USA. Shindokan Saitou-ryu is his...his By-Laws are his...his comings and goings are his...and he didn't want to be like them, and he didn't want to be associated with them, and he didn't want to answer to them.

MatsuShinshii wrote:
I am also fuzzy on how his position and grade were removed. It has always been my understanding that once a grade, title, license is awarded/granted, especially by the past Soke, it can not be removed except by the Soke. How exactly does one go about striping someone from his heritage and lineage? How does one go about taking away any rights to his own organizations name? I could see starting a separate organization as this is what my Shinshii did when his passed away. He did not get along with the son so he started his own.

WE REMOVED THEM...BOTH!! In our opinions, after what he did to us, we could've cared less, because we were going to survive through this together, but without him. Our then Legal Team, which is lead by an outside agency, and not affiliated to the SKKA/Hombu, is now our Legal Team; they're a crack team...a no taking of prisoners. Soke hired them a long time ago, and he never looked back.

We stripped him of Judan!! We stripped him of Soke entitlement!! He can walk around claiming and believing all he wants, however, we will not recognize him in either of them...NO JUDAN...NO SOKE ENTITLEMENT!! That's OUR right, and we do not apologize for it. He wanted to ruin us, we vented our revenge in an exacting manner within the laws of the USA. He tried to hurt us, we hurt him back tenfold!!

We didn't take anything away from him!! He took the SKKA/Hombu away from us!! We rebuilt!! We survived!! He can open his own governing body and Hombu anytime he wants. After all, he stripped the SKKA/Hombu of both its essence as well as its monetary effect, and that was his right, I suppose, he was a Soke type. New world, new rules; play by our rules or go away and start your own place. Just leave us alone to our own bidding's.

MatsuShinshii wrote:
How many students/instructors are there in Okinawa? Is the totality of the student body here in the US? Did your first Soke have his Hombu in Okinawa and if so how did it get moved to the US? Was it due to the number of high ranking instructors here as apposed to Okinawa and else where? I am just very confused as to why Dai-Soke would want his son to move the Hombu if he did not move it when he had control. It really doesn't compute why he would want to move it if there is not a large presence on Okinawa. It's not like your going to move there and open up shop among the plethora of other arts and expect to build fast enough to get to current numbers or even half of those numbers. Sounds to me he romanced about having a Hombu in Okinawa himself. I would think he moved over there and found that it was not going to be that cut and dry.

There are NO/ZERO Shindokan instructors and/or students in Okinawa!! The entire Student Body of the SKKA is here in the USA!!

Soke didn't have a Hombu in Okinawa, nor did he desire to ever have one there!! He had no public dojo in Okinawa; his one and only student was Dai-Soke!! And as I've mentioned here earlier, we believe that Dai-Soke only wanted his family to bury him in Okinawa, and no where else.

MatsuShinshii wrote:
I am sure you may have other posts that outline some of my questions but as I said I am not crystal clear as to all of the hows and why's.

I hope that I've cleared away some, if not all, cobwebs. If not, ask away, I've nothing to hide, well, only those things that are proprietary in nature.

MatsuShinshii wrote:
P.S. I do not envy your position. This is in part why I couldn't wait to step down as president of our board. If I could I would walk away from all politics all together and just teach and study the art. Oh the good old days of just enjoying the art.

Thanks, I don't envy my position either, but I've big shoulders. You and I, again, have so many similarities, even though ours might be more muddled in its politics, than we'd like to. Yes...oh the good old days, and how I miss them!!



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JR 137
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2017 1:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Your present situation reminds me of people's attitudes toward Fidel Castro. Obviously he's dead now and it's somewhat irrelevant, but play along...

People forget the Cuban missile crisis. People forget Castro almost ended everything due to his actions. Lift the embargo on Cuba? Not a chance IMO. Yes, I understand the people of Cuba are being punished by this, but the sentence was handed down for great reason. I can't imagine anyone who was alive at the time would agree with forgiving Castro. I wasn't alive and I still see the why!

Hopefully this doesn't turn into a political discussion. The point is to say some things are unforgivable.
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