Jun Akiyama (akiy) wrote:
In other words, neither the term "sensei" nor "shihan" connote that the person with such a title has to "teach," per se, but just keep doing what he has been doing. In this approach, it's the student's responsibility to learn through modelling and "stealing" the teacher's teachings.
I'm surmising that this has roots in the classical "master - apprentice" system, but I really have no firm basis for this.
I'm certainly not in the league as Peter in the Japanese language, but here's what I have picked up over the years.
What you stated above is pretty much the heart of it. However, the best teachers that I have experienced (in Japan or elsewhere) also so some "teaching" in the relationship. It's the students responsibility to present themselves in the proper "spirit" to learn and take the practice into themselves. The teacher should almost feel like there is a force coming from the student that's a tractor beam pulling at the teacher all of the time. Eagerness, open-mind and heart, trust, etc. should be going both ways between student and teacher.
My Shinto Muso Ryu teacher, Phil Relnick-sensei continually says, "This is your practice, take responsibility for the practice."
Hope Peter (and others) can add their knowledge to this subject. I think many students do not understand the relationship between student and teacher. We all have much to learn from each other.