In the Name of Honor: Part II

by Stephen LaBounty (2011-04-24)

In the Name of Honor: Part II

First an apology. I apologize for misspelling so many words in my first offering on this topic. I will try to be more attentive to spelling, flow, etc. Now, onward!

In the few comments that I received in relation to the first offering, I must clarify a couple of things: First, martial artists are persons too, have the same drama, weaknesses, strength, temptations, etc. We are far from being above what one commenter said "the petty bullshit of life, we are more in touch with life and death issues". Fine, but sorry, we all are part of the 'petty bullshit of life' and carry our own shovel to boot. But I will move on now and address the five bullet points listed:

Recognition of being too needy: It is within us to look for some sort of support of ourselves, our causes and our well being. We look to many persons and things to acquire this security; love, job, faith, family, etc. None of those are troublesome in themselves, but there are times when none of them are giving us the confidence that we are loved, qualified, spiritual, or a good parent, partner, and so on. These needy times are to be expected of course but they can mushroom to a debilitating freeze on our lives and hamper the peaceful flow of the life we really want. I am definitely one of those persons and confess to losing so much I did not need to. So, here's what works for me.

Using the art, I have to often remember why I really made the leap into Kenpo. What was it in truth? Security? Physical Conditioning? or all of the above and then some. What happened is that while I made it a central point of my life, maybe a central passion would be better, I forgot that I had other persons, things, and goals OUTSIDE of Kenpo to attain or complete. When these other needs outside of Kenpo begin to let me down (in my opinion), I tenaciously clung to them literally smothering them. They were essentially bludgeoned by me to provide me with the love and confidence I had just turned my back on, and now I wanted them to abandon all they needed and revive MY self, my ego and most of all, the power I felt I had lost.

I have learned that the balance, or Yin/Yang of my life both martial and personal, requires that I be honest and truthful, being loyal to my word, and that I understand that the persons whom I've asked to 'rescue' me, also have their issues to sort out.

So, I offer you the following techniques that I've used often lately and need to recognize these times that I need to address my shortcomings. I hope that you may find some of it beneficial.

First, seeking the martial way is most important. Identify what that means to you personally that is within the secret and fearful pockets of your mind. Realize that firm, truthful study of the martial "arts" not martial "tricks" is the only way to build on your confidence and skill physically. What you believe in your heart and soul, will display in your movement and most of all, application. Understand that first and foremost, this is an art of WAR, not just an exercise for physical benefit. While you may never have to respond to a violent situation, the warrior within will help in so many other ways since it takes courage to do the first, and is displayed in the second. This too, will convince you that there is no easy way out of life, and that the martial path give you the tools to move forward when ''duty calls" and retreat with honor when that decision benefits you the most.

Too many marital artists, me included, do not allow ourselves the humanity due us, and thereby pushing forward all that we really are, flawed Human Beings, with the fear that if we don't, we'll be "found out". Being flawed can also have a positive and inner strength component too, in that every ounce of our being fair to ourselves, not punishing "us" for our shortcomings, and being fair to the persons who love us, the jobs we do, the faith we have and assigning any blame as temporary only. In this transformation of spirit, we find that we can work on this confidence even while we sleep. Knowing that our path is before us, our loved ones support us on all days, not just good days, and that the martial arts, kept "martial" are the realization that even 'flaws' can be changed into positive habits and applications.

They say that all fear is the fear of Death. Most likely. But that which is inevitable cannot be dwelled on for too long. Then, no life has room within the person and no one can totally love totally another who only sees the 'death' of the spirit way before its time. Be strong in this! Trust yourself to do what is best for YOU first.

I told someone once that we cannot lie and cheat ourselves to a good life now or in the future, so don't try. I didn't try at one time and wasted many years away from a passion that is a calling to me. Good journey!