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Old 06-28-2013, 11:48 PM   #17
Chris Li
 
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Dojo: Aikido Sangenkai
Location: Honolulu, Hawaii
Join Date: Dec 2000
Posts: 3,072
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Re: What's in a name? sensei, shihan, etc.

In Japan you generally address someone by their title (ie, "Kacho") as the first choice, their last name (ie, "Suzuki-san") as the second choice and almost never by their first name unless you know them fairly well, or for children. That doesn't really has much to do with respect, it's just the custom.

Actually, in spoken Japanese I've found that people are often much more informal when speaking about important instructors and historical figures in Aikido than their counterparts outside of Japan usually are.

In any case, most of us are not in Japan, are not Japanese, and do not even speak Japanese. I don't have much of a problem with anybody calling me whatever.

Best,

Chris

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