Niju Kun

Niju Kun:

The niju kun are twenty principles (or precepts) to aid the Karate practitioner in their training.  The dojo kun were created from these twenty rules as a more condensed version.  Like the Dojo kun there are some differences in translation depending on where you look but all get the general meaning across.  Below are the twenty principals, some have alternate translations when the meaning isn’t clear:

1.     Karate-do begins and ends with rei (Respect/courtesy/bow)
         Karate-do wa rei ni hajimari rei ni owaru koto o wasaru na

2.     There is no first strike in karate
         Karate ni sente nashi

3.     Karate stands on the side of justice
         Karate wa, gi no tasuke

4.     First know yourself, then know others
         Mazu onore o shire, shikashite ta o shire

5.     Mentality over technique / Spirit first, technique second.
         Gijitsu yori shinjitsu

6.     The mind must be set free
         Kokoro wa hanatan koto o yosu

7.     Calamity springs from carelessness
         Wazawai wa ketai ni seizu

8.     Karate goes beyond the dojo
         Dojo nomino karate to omou na

9.     Karate is a lifelong pursuit / It will take your entire life to learn karate, there is no limit.
no shugyo wa issho de aru

10.  Apply the way of karate to all things. Therein lies its beauty / you will find "Myo" (subtle secrets).
         Ara yuru mono o karateka seyo; sokoni myomi ari

11.  Karate is like boiling water; without heat, it returns to its tepid state (it will cool)
        Karate Wa Yu No Goto
shi Taezu Netsu o Atae Zareba Motono Mizuni Kaeru

12.  Do not think of winning. Think, rather, of not losing / do not have to lose
        Katsu kangae wa motsuna; makenu kangae wa hitsuyo

13.  Make adjustments according to your opponent / Victory depends on your ability to distinguish vulnerable points from invulnerable ones.
         Tekki ni yotte tenka seyo

14.  The outcome of a battle depends on how one handles weakness and strength.
        Tattakai wa kyo-jitsu no soju ikan ni ari

15.  Think of hands and feet as swords / Think of your opponent’s hands and feet as swords.
        Hi to no te-ashi
o ken to omoe

16.  When you leave home think that you have numerous opponents waiting for you.
        Danshi mon o izureba hyakuman no teki ari

17.  Beginners must master low stance and posture, natural body positions are for the advanced.
        Kamae wa shoshinsha ni atowa shizentai

18.  Practicing a Kata exactly is one thing, engaging in a real fight is another.
        Kata wa tadashiku, jisen wa betsumono

19.  Do not forget the employment of withdrawal of power, the extension or contraction of the body, the swift or leisurely application of technique.
        Chikara no kyojaku tai no shinshuku waza no kankyu
o wasuruna

20.  Be constantly mindful, diligent, and resourceful, in your pursuit of the Way.

         Tsune ni shinen ku fu seyo