The Flags

Tanner Tang Soo Do flag

The fist is the symbol of justice. It should be used only in self defence and should not be used aggressively, or for purposes which would bring discredit to you or your martial art.

The five fingers of the fist in a clenched position denotes control over the five senses. The knotted belt symbolises achievement over one’s mind and body through determination, dedication, willpower and conscientious effort. When the five senses of human beings are properly controlled and channeled the meaning of life unfolds and the otherwise impossible things in life become a possibility and a reality.

At Tanner Tang Soo Do, students train and discipline the body, mind and spirit through the study of martial arts, to overcome conflicts at physical, mental, emotional and spiritual levels thus enabling one to live a life in harmony with oneself, nature and society.

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The Korean Flag

The Korean national flag, the symbol of the Republic of Korea, is named “T’aegukki”. The name was derived from the taeguk circle in the centre. In the centre of a white background is a circle divided equally and in perfect balance with each part resembling a comma. The upper red comma represents the yang and the lower blue comma the um (yin in Chinese).

According to traditional oriental philosophy, the two symbolise the great cosmic forces, which oppose each other but achieve perfect harmony and balance (an ancient symbol of the universe that is in perfect harmony and balance). This red and blue swirl and sometimes the flag itself is call the the t’aeguk. The central thought in the t’aeguk form illustrates constant motion in the sphere of infinity where there is also balance. For example, the opposite of rain is drought. Crops must have rain but too much rain will cause a flood and hardship, this there must be a balance. These two harmonious forces, both complementary and in opposition express the dualism of the cosmos or the absolute—fire and water, day and night, good and evil, hot and cold. The t’aeguk circle stands for the eternal principle that everything in the universe is created and develops through the interaction between um and yang; thus it symbolises creation and development.

The four trigrams surrounding the circle denote the process of um and yang going through a spiral of change and growth. That means heaven (lo’n) at the upper left, earth (kon) at the lower right, moon (kam) at the upper right and sun (i) at the lower left. The trigrams also illustrate the concept of opposites and balance. The three unbroken bars represent heaven while the three broken bars represent earth. The three bars in the upper right hand corner symbolise water while the three bars in the lower left hand corner represent fire.

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The Uniform (Do Bok)

The uniform or training suit is properly called Do Bok. This is a composite word combining Do “way of life” with Bok “apparel” or “clothing”. Since the Do Bok is what you wear when you practice your “Do” or “way”, its care and meaning are very important. Similarities can be found between the current Do Bok and ancient Korean traditional clothing.

Today we maintain the white colour to show purity, reverence for life, and commitment to avoid bloodshed and violence. Action and thought are inseparable. Also the outside appearance and inside attitude are closely linked. When you look your best, you usually feel good too. Keeping this in mind, always appear in class with your uniform clean and pressed, in good repair, and with the proper trim for your rank. Your instructors or seniors will help instruct you in the proper care and wear of your Do Bok