Karate: The Heart of Propriety

Japan's southernmost islands of Okinawa were once ruled by the independent kingdom of Ryukyu. The kingdom prospered through trade with its more powerful neighbors, maintaining diplomatic relations based on the spirit of honor and respect. This spirit survives today through the traditional kata or forms of karate, a martial art that evolved from the bare-handed fighting styles of Ryukyu, practiced to develop body, mind and soul to discourage rather than initiate an attack. Follow our explorer's journey through the spirituality of Okinawa culture.