World Sansei Koryu Gojuryu Karatedo, as formulated by its founder, Manny Saavedra, Kaicho is an organizational approach to Goju-Ryu Karate which seeks to attract people who are willing, through their training, to become role models to humanity by exemplifying loyalty, honesty, the work ethic, strong family ties, and community service.
World Sansei Koryu Gojuryu Karatedo is about ideals, principles, and ethics; these qualities have an essential function in the life of every human being. Each culture emphasizes certain behaviors, values, and a better way of being (some way to bring out the highest and best qualities). Most people do not consciously think about the effect culture and language has on behavior. Learning to be aware of these influences and their effect on a society as well as oneself is part of the study of the martial arts and part of knowing oneself. World Sansei Koryu Gojuryu Karatedo literally means “(International Old-Style Karate Goju Association).” The World Sansei Koryu Gojuryu Karatedo was founded to support learning process. It is composed of “modern traditionalists” seeking to become better human beings through the study of the Gojuryu system.
The Chinese, Japanese, and Korean cultures have long dominated and influenced the values taught to students of the martial arts; however, modern traditionalists have not always been able to support such an unstructured blend of culture influences. Without structure in a martial arts system, the variety of cultural influences complicates one’s ability to maintain a strong sense of values. Too frequently people value materialism and seldom do they value principles they hold to be their ideals. While every culture has certain differences and influences the choices an individual makes in his or her lifestyle, all people share some of the same ideals. At the heart of these shared values are the concepts of loyalty, honesty, work and family. These are also the concepts on which World Sansei Koryu Gojuryu Karatedo is founded. As fundamental concepts, loyalty and honesty are directed first towards the self.
According to Sansei principle, being loyal and honest with one’s self often requires taking an unpopular position or sacrificing some basic comforts. Everyone has some qualities they would prefer not to accept and others they would like to possess. Maintaining clarity when applying the Sansei principles to one’s self is not easy. It becomes more complex when one extends the application to families, friends, community, and country. Through the extension, one returns to the more difficult interpretation of self-values. The Sansei World Sansei Koryu Gojuryu Karate-do directs its support and teaching to individual level.
Work is a concept of applying effort and energy to achieve a goal. Some people seek easier methods of achieving the same goal. To borrow cliché: “The end justifies the means” for many individuals. While the principle of work in Sansei emphasizes efficient results, also present is the idea of how that goal is attained and the method chosen to accomplish the task. World Sansei Koryu Gojuryu Karatedo supports the idea that hard consistent work directed towards achieving a goal will pay off; steady progress will achieve more lasting, more beneficial results than quick, poor quality, and less attentive efforts. One of the precepts of the World Sansei Koryu Gojuryu Karatedo is “if you work hard enough, nothing is impossible
The concept of family overlaps and extends beyond all cultural boundaries. In every society the word “mother” evokes universal nurturing qualities. The concept of “father” brings to mind universal discipline and creative processes. Martial arts students are often considered the adopted children of the instructor or sifu, meaning “teacher-father.” This is the basis for continuity in all systems of martial arts. While the World Sansei Koryu Gojuryu Karatedo supports the fraternal aspects of such a tradition, the emphasis on family is more personal. In Sansei, when one refers to strong family ties one is referring to personal family or immediate family. If strong family ties exist, organizational ties will follow.
Goju-Ryu translates as hard and soft, strong and gentle, or block soft and hit hard system. The translations can prove difficult to put into practice. Since language is a major factor to shape thinking and therefore movement, the words “hard and soft” can lead to confusion. Goju-Ryu may be viewed as being both strong and gentle as seen in the jungle cats, which move gently, but with strong force simultaneously. One ultimate goal of Goju-Ryu training is to achieve a balance of strength and gentleness, thus creating a harmony within the practitioner in all aspects of life. This is the “way” of Goju-Ryu Karate.