Happy Soul Food Friday
A Tribute to the Inimitable Harry Belafonte:
This spontaneous breakout into song at USA for Africa is worth the watch and listen!
Want to know who all the talent in that room were?
You can scroll through the comments at the bottom of the vid, or click here:
USA for Africa also held a benefit event, Hands Across America, in which approximately seven million people held hands in a human chain for fifteen minutes along a path across the continental United States. Participants paid ten dollars to stand in line and the money raised was used to fight hunger and homelessness in Africa. The combined revenues raised from the sales of “We Are the World” and Hands Across America was almost $100 million in 1985.
Celebrating Sensei Fumio Demura:
The traditional martial arts world lost a legend this week.
Sensei Demura, the legit stunt double as Sensei Miyagi in the Karate Kid movies, and a martial artist par excellence passed away this week.
Competing at his tournaments was a treat.
Training under him was a gift.
Teaching with him was an inspiration.
Remembering him and keeping the practice alive is an honor!
You can get a flavor for his technical virtuosity here:
BEST of Fumio Demura 出村 文男 • Action Montage – YouTube
And here is something Demura Sensei wrote about the role of a karate Sensei:
“The person you refer to as ‘Sensei’ is in that position for a valid reason. It seems today I hear a lot of former students or ex-black belts disrespecting their Sensei for a myriad of reasons. To better help you understand why a Sensei deserves, or let me put it a better way, demands your respect let me lay it out for you.
The Sensei is the one who has dedicated their life to the art they teach you. You will never have as many years of dedication in because you came after them.
The Sensei is the one who spent many days and nights opening their dojo, cleaning it, making it better…for YOU.
The Sensei is the one who has made sacrifices you will never understand just so you have a place to train, to learn and gain in your art.
The Sensei is the one who, often at great costs, has given up their free time, their family time…time they could be out doing many other things just so you can learn and train.
The Sensei is the one who has invested thousands of dollars in their own training just to learn how to teach you properly.
The Sensei is the one who has often broken bones, but still showed up to teach class. Torqued muscles, tendons and had strains but still showed up to teach class. Had a migraine, was sick, had a bad day…but still showed up to teach class. All these things are excuses why you miss class.
The Sensei often goes without so that the dojo and students will be taken care of. This means they give up having nice things at times, vacations, going out to dinner, hanging out with friends and family…all so you can learn Karate.
The Sensei has spent more time in a dojo than most of you that train with them have been alive.
The Sensei is the one who is always there for your training.
The Sensei quite often sees a need and fills a need for their students. They see that poor kid who has little of anything and needs sparring gear and they just go ahead and get it for them. They see the student who is struggling to come up with funds to buy their own weapons for Kobudo and just buys extras so they can participate. They see their adult students losing their jobs and says, “Don’t worry about paying til you’re caught up”. This is the role the Sensei plays, and it demands respect.
I can sit here and think of a thousand more reasons why you should never, ever disrespect your Sensei too…but, in all honesty, I shouldn’t have to. I shouldn’t have had to even write this blog…but, then again, people live in a shallow world these days. Perhaps we should step out of it, be bigger and better, and then the world will change.
Respect your Sensei, take care of your Sensei, honor your Sensei…because, one day, your Sensei will no longer be around.”
– Fumio Demura
I was the sole survivor of a plane crash. This is what I learned in eight days alone in the jungle:
Annette Herfkens was on holiday with her fiancé when their plane went down, killing everyone but her.
Three decades later, she reflects on how the trauma changed her.
I was the sole survivor of a plane crash. This is what I learned in eight days alone in the jungle | Plane crashes | The Guardian
I jumped out of a plane to learn the benefits of stress:
It turns out that within moderation, stress can even be good for you.
I jumped out of a plane to learn the benefts of stress | Anxiety | The Guardian
Mums Are Tying Ribbons To Their Bags For A Really Wonderful Reason:
“This is an antidote to loneliness, comparison, division, fear of being rebuffed when supporting others,” says therapist Anna Mathur, who came up with the idea.
Mums Are Tying Ribbons To Their Bags For A Really Wonderful Reason | HuffPost UK Parents (huffingtonpost.co.uk)
Thanks this week go to Arman S-B for the Harry Belafonte link, to Sensei Demura for a lifetime of service, and to musicians, martial artists, and mothers everywhere.
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“Language is surely too small a vessel to contain these emotions of mind and body that have somehow awakened a response in the spirit.” — Radclyffe Hall