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(3) The relationships between Taekwondo and the Traditional Thoughts of the Oriental.

 

C. Buddhism and Taekwondo philosophy

The essence of Buddhism philosophy is the theory of emptiness(Gong, sunyata) based on the buddhist causation theory.

Of course, Buddhism made great progress developing Mahayanist Buddhism after Buddha, and it came to include a variety of epistemologies, ontologies and axiologies in it, whereas all of those must be based on the theory of emptiness and causation which Buddha had realized at first. Buddha declared that he found out the causal unity of everything during his inquiry on the nature of existence, thus he could obtain the freedom. This emptiness theory was formalized as 3 Beop-yin (), which are Jaehaengmusang(), Jaebeopmu'a() and Ilchaegaego(). To explain these, Jaehaengmusang() implies that every phenomenon in this world changes eternally allowing nothing immutable and unchangeable. Jaebeopmu'a() implies that there can be even no self or substance that exists independent and immutable either, i.e, that there is no such thing as real self that manages the whole phenomena. And Ilchaegaego() implies that since there is nothing immutable one can be satisfied with nothing.

The implications of this 3 beop-yin is to be depicted as erasing and picturing myself in the Taekwondo poem. How to erase and picture myself at the same time? It is possible to do it because I can see the real emptiness that Buddhist theory explains when I experience the Munyomnusang by way of perfect harmony of myself. It is neither empty nor not empty. It is just that everything is connected with another extremely and indefinitely, which implies that this is not this and that not that, and everthing changes constantly from time to time. I moving harmonized perfectly with my opponent, I am completely not I, and my opponent already exists just in my actions. This is the Jaehaengmusang() and Jaebeopmu'a(), which is equal to the whole causation and the real emptiness itself. So to say, "this is just because that is/this occurs because just that occurs./ this does not happen when that does not/this stop when that does so." We can see this as I exist just because my opponent exists and I react only according to his motion in Taekwondo. And there is nothing constant there at the same time, which, however, does not mean that there is nothing at all. Namely, everything is put together into oneness because of the complete causation resulting in no difference at all between existence and nonexistence. This is Gong(), the emptiness theory of Buddhism. This is also an interpretation of Han philosophy that is the result of the application of ontological nonorientability. This buddhist concept of emptiness() is the moderate one, which can be seen as contradictory. According to the concept of Gong, the buddhhist emptiness, everything in the world is unsatisfiable to us, so called Go(), which lead us to transcending this mundane world. On the other hand, however, Buddhism teaches us at the same time that one can be happy through the effect of karma if he do much good on others.

This theory of emptiness, Gong() is based on the buddhist causation theory.

The buddhist causation theory implies that everything is made of the connections among all and is to create its causal effects on others, which leads to that the life, the agony, and the destiny of mankind is to be influenced by what man does. This causation theory is the foundation and essence of Buddhism. The fundamental spirit of the whole Buddhist philosophy was constructed on it. That is to say, other theories of Buddhism are deployments and variations of it. The causation theory was formulated into 12 causation doctrines.

The buddhist causation theory has intimate relations to the fact that the essence of Taekwondo can be formed only in the relation between me and my opponent. That is, the essence lies in the Kyorugy, which requires both me and my opponent. Both I and he are indispensable. What does one think of when he exercises himself in Taekwondo? He must think of his imagined opponent's actions and positions. Even in exercise of Poomsae, he is supposed to be in Kyorugy situation. This implies that he, in poomsae, reacts to and competes with his imagined opponent, without which the Poomsae stops being Taekwondo poomsae. Thus we can say that Taekwondo is a dialogue. Taekwondo is a dialogue between my opponent and I, between subjectivity and objectivity, between now and then, between mind and body, change and constancy, man and nature, and being and nothingness. Each of them are the same with another despite its distinctive expression, the real appearance of which is neither empty nor full. That is to say, neither is Taekwondo just a relation of I and he or that of subjectivity and objectivity, nor is it not one of the two. This is the nature of Gong(), the buddhist emptiness.

In this way, we can understand the relationship between buddhist causation and emptiness in Taekwondo, which proves the intimate relationship between Taekwondo philosophy and Buddhism.