Question: Why did you start studying the martial arts? And if you have been studying for over three years...why do you study now?
For myself the answer is easy. My first reason was self-defense. Nothing more than that. At the age of 14 I was one of the skinniest and smallest kids in Junior High, easily intimidated and felt very insecure. I wanted to be able to take care of myself and never feel inadequate in the face of someone bigger than me.
It is still my belief that first and foremost, your art should be about defending yourself, quickly and easily. If it doesn't...then find another one if you can. My confidence soared after even a few months of Karate lessons...and almost by magic much of my fears dissipated. Self-defense, the knowledge you can defend yourself, leads to greater confidence...and for myself encouraged me to continue to practice...despite the pain.
And now...why do I still practice? Cause I am nuts! Well, only partially true. Now...and as most know...it is an inner exploration of ourselves. It is dealing with a greater enemy than one we would face in a back alley behind a bar. It is facing ourselves and our own inner demons of anger, greed and delusion. The three poisons of which Buddha spoke of. For myself this is the real 'Three Battles' of Sanchin Kata.
I also study now because of the bond I feel with other martial artists. It is the sense of belonging to a neat group of people who are just as insane about being flown through the air and enduring the variety of vigorous physical rigors.
So, how about you? I am always curious as to why people wish to start the arts...and why they continue. Please share if you are inclined. I know other readers who are just starting would like to know why most of us old-timers keep doing this stuff.
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