March 8, 2016, Israel
Being a teacher is often an ungrateful job. I am speaking of all teachers, not specifically martial arts or self defense instructors. We toil long hours, often are criticized and rarely thanked. We are expected to know everything and are often accused of knowing nothing.
We work long hard hours, much more than is known to the public. The many "invisible hours", preparing classes, research, travel, are unknown to the public. Teaching is an under valued and under rewarded profession.
And you wonder, what is it all about. Why do it?
The other day I saw a very badly behaved woman. So bad that I have no words. Totally lacking in common decency, courtesy or any other value I hold dear. The kind of behavior that makes you ashamed of your people and you wonder..how? How could any parent raise a child to be such a horrible, gross, adult?
Sadly, parenting is a profession that requires no training, not in our times. In the past the grandparents played a greater role, the entire clan, or village played a greater role. Today people are less rooted, more often uprooted, and simply winging it.
It is difficult for us teachers to undo the negative effect of poor parenting, and yet, we must try and often we succeed.
Just after I experienced this rude and uncouth woman I saw an advertisement, a colleague and friend: Martial arts classes, self defense and values. Indeed this friend, Yossi, has very good values. I hope he has a great impact on the community. I hope he takes kids from such mothers and sets a better example and helps them become decent adults.
We as teachers must never forget the great and critical role we play in society. We are the great wall against barbarism. We are the last defense against bad behavior. We must never forget this and we must never give up.
A true teacher never retires.
To all about to teach, we salute you.