Home » Posts tagged 'Duty'

Tag Archives: Duty

ZAMBIAN KARATE HISTORY PROFILE: Professor Stephen Chan, OBE, 9th Dan

STEPHEN CHAN’S PIONEERING ROLE IN ZAMBIAN KARATE
Accomplishments and Impact in the Transformation of Martial Arts Culture

NOTES:

  • This article is in response to a request by my friend and Martial Arts brother, Raymond Mbazima, Sensei, in June 2016, “Could you do a write-up of Professor Stephen Chan Sensei’s Pioneering Role in Zambia – in particular what he accomplished and his impact in the transformation of martial arts culture?”
  • The article is an honest account of events as best as my memory serves me. I must apologize in advance for any inaccuracies, or misunderstandings that might arise. The names of the various people mentioned in the article are done so with but only respect and the fondest of memories. I’ll be failing if I didn’t acknowledge many of them as having helped mould the kind of man I am today, both inside and outside the dojo. None of them is directly responsible for my madness, though.
  • Regarding the main subject of the article, Stephen Chan, the tone the article has taken is as it emerged from my heart, without fear or favour. That, in line with how my mind has interpreted the execution of his Martial Arts teacher and Godfather role towards me over the years; in four countries, Zambia, UK, Norway, and South Africa.
    I have never felt that Stephen was compelled to work with me, neither have I ever felt that I was unduly expected to feel indebted to him for all that he has done for me. Therefore, I am under no obligation, I have no pressing need to aspire to sanctify, or flatter him. There is nothing egotistical to gain, nor intended to.
    All this I shall summarize in Stephen’s own words in a correspondence pertaining to the article, “I do hope it is a lot more to do with mutual respect and camaraderie. I always pitched in with you on the floor – so we all suffered together.”

    SteSi

    ©Simon Chilembo 2017 Photo: Cynthia Reynolds

The article here initially covers the years 1981-85, a period of my first ever direct observation of Stephen’s physical presence, and martial arts work in Zambia. It will partially describe my personal experience of training and studying Karate with him as my Sensei at the UNZA Karate Club (UKC) in Lusaka. Little did I ever think then that thirty-five years on, the special student-master relationship would still be going strong; not only with me, but with many others of my generation the world over.

Following Stephen’s footsteps as a diverse collective spread across many parts of the world, the at least five generations of top-flight Karateka my contemporaries and I have produced continue to grow and benefit from his profound knowledge of, and love for the Martial Arts. Above all, perhaps, his broader love for, and service to humanity through his exemplary professional work and career continue to inspire many of us.

Secondly, the years 1986-88 are, in my opinion and personal experience, the period in which the relevance of Stephen’s impact on me would be tested to the limit. It would also test the unity and commonality of purpose in the then Seidokan Zambia core group he had developed at UKC.

Furthermore, this period would, by extension, define whether Stephen’s legacy in Zambian Karate would live on or not. I dare say that the modern Jindokai Zambia/ Zimbabwe family we have today can trace their roots to specifically that period. Had we at UKC failed to keep it together during those two years, the Zambian martial arts scene would have swallowed up Stephen Chan’s legacy for good, I am convinced.

It may be safe to say that Stephen’s work in the wider martial arts fraternity, within and outside the then Zambia Karate Federation (ZKF)’s framework, raised awareness of, and interest in the arts to unprecedented levels in the country. The man was, after all, the nearest living thing to Bruce Lee the people ever saw, came close to, touched, and spoke to.

Stephen made a striking presence on Television Zambia (TVZ)’s Sports Review shows, speaking, as Dennis Liwewe once said, “… fantabulous, beautiful English, indeed!”
The late Dennis Liwewe became a legend already in his own time as a passionate radio and TV sports commentator. If President Kaunda was Zambia’s football number one fan, Dennis Liwewe was in a class of his own as maestro supremo football commentator … (Continued in the book: MACHONA BLOGS – As I See It. Order Simon Chilembo books on Amazon)


Simon Chilembo, 6th Dan
Welkom
South Africa
Tel.: +47 92525032
June 16, 2016

SECRET OF PERSONAL SUCCESS: Don’t care about people?

©Simon Chilembo,  09/ 12-2012

©Simon Chilembo, 09/ 12-2012

If you are normal, and you want to be successful and happy (it’s okay to be not normal and still want to be successful and happy; if you don’t want to be successful and happy because you really don’t care, just pretend you do want to be successful and happy anyway) do the following (if you don’t want to do the following, pretend it’s a cool thing to do and just do it anyway):

  • Be yourself (you can also be someone else if that’s what you’d rather do because it’s cool, and it works for you).
  • Be where you are (if you don’t like where you are, find a new place to be; if you can’t find a new place to be you like, pretend you like where you are and be there).
  • Do what you do (if you do not like what you do, find something else you like to do; if you cannot find something else you like to do, pretend you like what you do because it’s so cool after all).
  • Be honest to all the above. It’s also okay to be dishonest to all of the above if it’s the honest and cool thing to do.
  • Be the best you can be in all the defining things you do. If you can’t be the best because it doesn’t matter or because the going is tough, just believe you are the best because you believe it’s cool to be the best even if you don’t want to be.
  • Don’t care about people! Just serve them well and good all the time.
    – People are not stupid, even if some like to pretend to be clever in order to be stupid.
    – Normal people know what’s good and what’s bad. Not normal people also know the difference. People normally like and approve of things and people that are good to them, people and things who add value to their lives.
    – If you are good to people, and you serve them well, they will share the happiness you give them with you; they will make you successful. So,
  • Be nice to people. If only simply because it’s cool to be nice, and it’s nice to be nice. Your relative degrees of personal success and happiness are a measure of how well or not well you interact with people in your serving endeavours, both in general and specific terms.

Simon Chilembo

Oslo

Norway

Tel.: +47 97000488/ +27 717454115
October 08, 2012