I am writing a paper about the martial arts, and found you on the internet. Since you are the tutor in this field, I would like to have your opinion. The topic is "Why is loyalty important?"
Loyalty gives the recipient peace of mind. When you have loyal followers, employees, friends, students, etc. you don’t have to worry about life as much. Martial art instructors, especially ones that teach as a business, are always concerned about keeping students so they may maintain a steady source of income and build a system of senior students and new instructors. Student loyalty helps insure instructors will succeed.
As for the students, when they have loyalty to their instructor, school, etc., they feel as though they belong. Loyalty helps people feel needed and important. They have the peace of mind knowing that, when they are in need, their loyalty to others will pay them back when the ones they have been loyal to come to their aid.
Some think loyalty is supporting a friend, an instructor, a martial art school, a martial art organization, etc. without making judgments about the person or group’s behavior. While it may not be proper to judge a person on what he or she says, it is proper to judge a person on his or her behavior; after all, that is what civil and criminal courts do everyday.
Nowadays, being judgmental is considered wrong. People tend to think that, if you are judgmental, then you are also prejudicial. However, behavior may be judged without prejudice for or against. No matter how harmful being judgmental may be, being nonjudgmental may be more harmful; it may even get you killed. For example, judging the behavior of a group of men on a street corner to be bad, possibly because of your prejudiced toward them, may cause you to avoid them and thus prevent possible harm to you.
Loyalty means having devotion, duty, or responsibility to support a person or group; however, loyalty must be tempered with judgment. Recently in Iraq a navy corpsman who was assigned to a group of marines witnessed, but did not prevent or report, a rape and murder carried out by the marines. The corpsman said he went along the cover-up out of a feeling of loyalty to the group; now he is in prison. Being loyal to a criminal is not virtuous, it is stupid.
Think of loyalty as a debt, similar to a car loan. The bank allows you own and use the car and, to show your appreciation, you repay the loan, along with some added interest to reward the bank for its assistance. In the case of a martial art instructor who has taught, guided, counseled, and helped you in your quest to become a martial artist, you want to show your appreciation by being loyal to the instructor. You want to repay the instructor with added interest by giving back more than you received. However, just as there is a point when the car loan is completely paid and the obligation ends, loyalty may also have an end date.
Once a person purposely does you wrong, your debt of loyalty ends. Everyone makes mistakes; however, when one purposefully does something wrong, it is not a mistake; it is an indicator of the person’s true character. It is possible for a person to completely erase a lifetime of good with one act of bad.
Sometimes the debt of loyalty is completely repaid. This occurs when you are giving back more than you are receiving or have received. If this is okay with you, it could continue indefinitely. However, once the loyalty is repaid, you may feel you want to move on to something else, such as a different instructor or martial art. Then you loyalty may shift to another person or group.
Loyalty is not static, it is fleeting. Depending upon many factors, it may be here today and gone tomorrow.