In the world there are lots of different versions of Kempo. Some of them are sports, some of them just special effect show, dance or a spiritual practice focused on integration of mind and body.
Kempo, as many martial arts, passed a long journey from India, through China with a help of Bodhidharma and eventually settled down in several Ryu Kyu islands of today’s Japan islands (the biggest island is Okinawa). From there, after the WW2, the journey continued to Europe. The past of the Kempo is not that important as the spirit and principles of practice that have survived all those centuries and continents.
The word Kempo is a Japanese form of Chinese word Chuan Fa. Chuan Fa is on the other hand translation of Indian Sanskrit word Vajramukti – thunderbolt closed hand. Chuan Fa is consisted of two Chinese symbols – Chuan – closed hand, and Fa – the way, law, principle or Buddhist teaching. So we can say that Kempo is principle of closed hand.
At the first glance some people could say that White Lotus Kempo is just like any other Karate school (white Keiko Gi, similar stances, kicks and punches), but the truth is far from that. Today’s Karate is mainly sport oriented. In the world of Karate there are worthy and notable exceptions (some old Okinawa spiritual Karates), but majority are just sport and physical exercise – which is definitely better than no exercise.
White Lotus Kempo school has completely different goals than most Karate schools. It includes hard physical training and spiritual growth of a person through training, but excludes all egocentric principles that are integral part of almost every sport – be better than other, winning a match to gain material wealth, fame, popularity etc. Those are just food for ego.
Kempo is martial art, not a sport, thereof there is no sport competition. The only true competition in Kempo, the real fight, is to overcome all negative inner states of mind (stress, anxiety etc. created with today’s fast way of living) through hard physical practice.