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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Budo for Peace teaches more than just martial arts

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A shared love of martial arts brings together both Arab and Jewish children from villages in Israel's north to learn not just karate but respect, tolerance, and more.

Educational program

The Budo For Peace program is comprised of physical trainings and educational workshops. It aims to strengthen participants' physical, mental and cognitive abilities.

Weekly training sessions

Is club is comprised of 10-20 students. Students meet with their local instructor twice a week for 1.5 hour-long lessons. Each session includes one hour of physical training and a 30-minute educational program. Physical training varies based on the instructor expertise and experience; traditional martial arts taught in BFP clubs include: Karate, Judo, Aikido, Taekwando and more.

During the second half of each lesson, the instructor teaches part of the BFP educational program. The 2-year program utilizes discussion, activities and role playing to teach the students about budo values - the inherent code of behavior found in all traditional martial arts. By using martial arts terminology, the program connects expected behavior to everyday life. Once acquired, the twelve chapters will assist BFP students in learning tolerance, participating in coexistence programming and how to prevent bullying and unnecessary violence.

The twelve chapters are each printed in Hebrew, Arabic and English. Each language is written in culturally-sensitive, martial arts terminology. To preview the first chapter on courtesy, click here.


All BFP instructors are black belts in their chosen martial art. All instructors hold a Teaching Certificate and have a minimum of two years teaching experience. Instructors choose to join BFP because they believe in the organization's vision for building tolerance and understanding through the martial arts.

Three times each year, Budo for Peace instructors join together for a two-day seminar. During these sessions, our instructors enjoy and experience the vision in action. They share their own professional knowledge and experience during physical training sessions. They discuss teaching techniques during workshops and dialogue groups. During each Sensei Seminar, the Budo for Peace Educational Coordinator leads training sessions, offering techniques and suggestions for optimal use of the BFP Educational Program.

Sensei Patrick Rault with Budo for Peace students in Jisr Azarka

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What is Budo?

Bu: Stopping conflict

Do: Way

Budo: "The way of stopping conflict”

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The Japanese word budô, loosely translated as "martial arts,” literally means "the way of stopping conflict.” The word is made up of two characters – "bu” (武) which encompasses both "stop” and "conflict,” and "do”(道) meaning "the way,” as in karate-do, aiki-do, ju-do, ken-do. Students of the traditional Japanese martial arts learn to deal with and control conflict, both within themselves and between themselves and others.

Although different budo may vary in physical technique, they all share a general concept that training enhances the connection between the mind, body and spirit. The mind develops concentration, focus and self-discipline. The body becomes fit while one learns to defend oneself. The spiritual training offers emotional stability and a way to live in harmony and balance with the world.

Budo is considered a way of life. All budo practitioners share the general philosophy that by training the mind and body, one develops ki (inner power) and with this energy one can create wa (harmony) with oneself and with others in the world.

The four main principles of budo are respect, harmony, self control, and self improvement.

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Budo for Peace