However, this entry is simply about questions. I love questions. I love asking questions and I love it when my students ask me questions - provided it is at the appropriate time (i.e. not in the middle of kata).
Why do I love questions? To me, if a student is asking me relevant questions, it means they genuinely want to learn and/or value my opinion (a little bit of an ego boost I admit). Don't understand the mechanics behind a technique? Ask - there is probably something you're missing. Don't understand the bunkai of a technique? Ask - there is probably something you're missing. Outright think a move is ineffective or silly? Ask - there is probably something you're missing.
When I say they're is probably something you're missing, that does not necessarily mean you just don't get it; it could very well be that I left out a detail in my explanation. I am human and I have in my many years of teaching have been known to accidentally left out a detail - whether out of error or simply assuming it was already known - and not realized it until I was questioned about it later.
I am fortunate to have an instructor who does not hold anything back from me if I ask. He has never told me "you're not ready for that technique" or "that is too advanced for you." And I, in turn, have tried to give the same channel of open information to my students.
When I answer my student's questions, I am as honest and forthright with them as possible. If I am not certain absolutely certain of the answer, I'll even openly reply "I don't know if this is correct, but here is what I believe and the reason why." I know a few instructors who would be aghast by me admitting that (because as black belts we're supposed to be "fountains of knowledge" and blah blah blah), but I would rather my students know that I don't know everything rather than trying to pretend I had ALL the answers.
In my own training there are a few bunkai I don't fully understand or need clarification on specific hand or foot placement on technique details (as well as a couple student inquiries I need to get clarification on & report back). And since I will be attending a seminar with a couple of my style seniors in a few weeks, I will certainly be running my list of questions by them.
All that being said, the one question I absolutely cannot stand is the hypothetical "Well what if he does this instead?" That only leads to the inevitable string of "Well, then do this," "But then what if he does this," "Then do this," "But what if..."
I actually have a "No What If" rule in my dojo and that's about the only question I don't like.