As you approach the level of First Degree Black Belt it is
imperative that you reflect upon the importance of attitude. The Kenpo
Creed and the subsequent Pledges represent the core of what your
philosophical attitude should be. You should be humble, but reasonably
so; proud, but not overly so. Treat yourself and all living things
with respect. Clearly define your personal principles, and be willing
to defend them. Examine those acts that are right vs those that are
wrong in terms of your family, as well as yourself, and never use your
knowledge and skill for personal gain, or at the expense of others.
You must be prepared to defend the weak, the helpless, and the
oppressed. Furthermore, you must desire to pass these attitudes on to

Look within yourself to see where your loyalty lies. Are you
loyal to Mr. Parker, the association, your art, and your students? Do
you work to earn that same loyalty from those around you, both in the
art and in your personal life?

Continue to sharpen your skills. Never tell yourself that you
"have arrived", or think that you "have surpassed". Avoid being
egotistical and complacent. Strive to perpetually evolve your art. Be
receptive. Constantly refine it as you seek new and fresh ideas. These
ideas may come from yourself, superiors, peers, students, or from
world activities that are not even directly related to your art.
Continually pursue inter-relating your art with the world around you.

When you take on the responsibility of a teacher, you assume a
great obligation to yourself, your students, your system, and the
association. As a tutor you must strive to learn Mr. Parker's art, as
he perceives it. Learn every aspect of his teachings. If you do not
understand what he professes, then digest it until you do. Appreciate
the reasoning and logic that is associated with his precepts and pass
it on to your students. Do not employ your own personal watered down
version of what you like or what you think it should be. Think of your
relationship with Mr. Parker, and imagine the ideal interaction
between him and you. Then be sure to strive for no less with your

Ed Parker Sr. Memories
Archived with the permission of Ed Parker Jr.
Ed Parker Sr. was the founder of the art known today as American Kenpo.
In these files, Ed Parker Jr. shares his fathers unpublished notes and other memories with us.