When you begin to feel like you are a tough guy, a warrior, a master of the martial arts or that you have lived a tough life, just take a moment and get some perspective with the following:
I've stopped knives that were coming to disembowel me
I've clawed for my gun while bullets ripped past me
I've dodged as someone tried to put an ax in my skull
I've fought screaming steel and left rubber on the road to avoid death
I've clawed broken glass out of my body after their opening attack failed
I've spit blood and body parts and broke strangle holds before gouging eyes
I've charged into fires, fought through blizzards and run from tornados
I've survived being hunted by gangs, killers and contract killers
The streets were my home, I hunted in the night and was hunted in turn
Please don't brag to me that you're a survivor because someone hit you. And don't tell me how 'tough' you are because of your training. As much as I've been through I know people who have survived much, much worse. - Marc MacYoung
WARNING, CAVEAT AND NOTE
The postings on this blog are my interpretation of readings, studies and experiences therefore errors and omissions are mine and mine alone. The content surrounding the extracts of books, see bibliography on this blog site, are also mine and mine alone therefore errors and omissions are also mine and mine alone and therefore why I highly recommended one read, study, research and fact find the material for clarity. My effort here is self-clarity toward a fuller understanding of the subject matter. See the bibliography for information on the books. Please make note that this article/post is my personal analysis of the subject and the information used was chosen or picked by me. It is not an analysis piece because it lacks complete and comprehensive research, it was not adequately and completely investigated and it is not balanced, i.e., it is my personal view without the views of others including subject experts, etc. Look at this as “Infotainment rather then expert research.” This is an opinion/editorial article/post meant to persuade the reader to think, decide and accept or reject my premise. It is an attempt to cause change or reinforce attitudes, beliefs and values as they apply to martial arts and/or self-defense. It is merely a commentary on the subject in the particular article presented.
Note: I will endevor to provide a bibliography and italicize any direct quotes from the materials I use for this blog. If there are mistakes, errors, and/or omissions, I take full responsibility for them as they are mine and mine alone. If you find any mistakes, errors, and/or omissions please comment and let me know along with the correct information and/or sources.
“What you are reading right now is a blog. It’s written and posted by me, because I want to. I get no financial remuneration for writing it. I don’t have to meet anyone’s criteria in order to post it. Not only I don’t have an employer or publisher, but I’m not even constrained by having to please an audience. If people won’t like it, they won’t read it, but I won’t lose anything by it. Provided I don’t break any laws (libel, incitement to violence, etc.), I can post whatever I want. This means that I can write openly and honestly, however controversial my opinions may be. It also means that I could write total bullshit; there is no quality control. I could be biased. I could be insane. I could be trolling. … not all sources are equivalent, and all sources have their pros and cons. These needs to be taken into account when evaluating information, and all information should be evaluated.” - God’s Bastard, Sourcing Sources
“You should prepare yourself to dedicate at least five or six years to your training and practice to understand the philosophy and physiokinetics of martial arts and karate so that you can understand the true spirit of everything and dedicate your mind, body and spirit to the discipline of the art.” - cejames
“All I say is by way of discourse, and nothing by way of advice. I should not speak so boldly if it were my due to be believed.” - Montaigne
Truth and Consequences
I once asked this person if they thought what they said was kind, true and necessary and the response was an emphatic "yes." I disagree and here is why.
First, this person was assuming that the statement was kind, true and necessary - to them. They fail and failed to project those questions as if they were the other person. Miller's law states one should assume what is said is true and try to find out what it is true of and in this case are the words/statements kind - to me, true - to me and necessary, to me?
First, the statements that are true/truth are not always kind. In most societies it is acceptable to sometimes not speak truth. I don't mean lie but rather not say anything at all. Sometimes it is more kind and necessary to say nothing rather than put out the truth because you feel it necessary even if not kind or true, for the other person.
Our thoughts are ours and our truth is ours and that truth may not be the thoughts or truth of another human being. It does not mean one is lying on either end but rather one person is "different" than another. Often the misunderstandings that occur are not due to truth but rather the perception of truth for that individual according to their culture and beliefs.
When speaking to others it is best sometimes, actually all the time, to take a moment of silence, interval, void to consider what it is your saying and how it applies to the other person, It is kind, for them? Even if there is a slight chance it is often wise to not say it. How it applies to the other person, is it true? Sometimes what is true is also a kindness but that can be difficult to determine so go cautious here and go to the third question that applies to the other person, is it necessary? If there is a shadow of doubt to the first, second or both first and second then the third is the critical question. In my recent experiences utilizing this mode of communication I find most times it is NOT NECESSARY to make the statement to the other person.
The caveat here is if the other person is "seeking your advice." When this occurs it is often best to circumvent the knee jerk answers you might give and instead simply "reflect what the other person is saying" to achieve a greater understanding of what is in their mind. This techniques often results in a better connection, your listening not judging, and the other person most often discovers the answer for themselves. If this sounds familiar good.
Truth is truth and is not contestable. Truth is taken and given individually. How it is taken or accepted is sometimes the line that is crossed into conflict. Most conflict, I can say on my end all of my conflict comes by words first, come from a lack of empathy and reflective/active listening. Often the best tactic to avoidance is to control the words that come from your mouth.
The Japanese often, mostly, use ma to achieve a void that is almost always pregnant with meaning in their culture to actually achieve a greater understanding before they speak, if at all, and before they act, smart way. We cannot achieve their cultural system but we can learn to "stop-listen reflectively-implement millers law-speak only those words that are kind, true and necessary if at all. Silence is the tactic of great karate-ka in a potential conflict. To remain silent takes a great deal of discipline. To reflectively listen to another who is being driven by the monkey brain also takes great discipline. All of this is to avoid physical interactions that result in damage of all kinds and at all levels.
Truth is not always kind or necessary even if true, for you.
Postscript: the person I used here said something unkind and unnecessary. It also was not true, for me. I felt it was a projection to manipulate in order to get something they wanted. I was immediately reminded of a conversation at a previous time where this same person wanted to tell a friend some truth but said it would be unkind to do so and would irreparably damage the friendship. I was ready to speak this truth to this person but in a similar sense it was true and I felt necessary but it was not kind at all and would have hurt very much so I went the different path and remained silent. I believe if I had gone forward it would have achieved the result I wanted and I would have hurt them unnecessarily which would have driven a barrier between our relations and that is not necessary at all. It is such a difficult thing, the most difficult and yet we don't have training for it, too bad.