Sunday, October 25, 2009

Embrace the Fight!

If you have ever sparred with Samurai Swords (padded ones) you will notice that the Samurai who manages the Gap in between typically wins. One key component of this is to have a mind set of no retreat. Never, ever back up. If you back up you will be receiving the strongest part of his attack and in the case of a real sword, the sharpest and deadliest portion...the tip.

If your opponent strikes at you, enter in or move to the side while entering...but do not back up. This takes practice, but once you get the hang of it, it becomes more natural...and easier to counter any attack. You learn to embrace the fight and you love the challenge.

Moving back in fear will get you hurt....heck, it is just like life. If you retreat from life and life's challenges your life will feel burdensome and unsafe. Your self-esteem will lag and life will feel like one big bag of crap dumped on your head. I speak from a young man in my late teens and early twenties, life sort of scared me. I was clueless and just wandering directionless.

When you adopt the mindset of moving it your all...taking on challenges with passion and fervor, your life becomes more rewarding. Good things begin to happen. You find life becoming easier and more joyful. And again, I speak from my own experience. I had gone through a tough divorce many years ago and this challenge opened my eyes to how I was retreating and not entering in and embracing the challenge.

There is an old Zen saying that you should practice Zen as if your hair is on fire. What this means to me is that you should have single-minded focus and do it with a sense of urgency...after all your hair is on fire! I encourage you to take this mindset in your Kumite or other types of sparring. Be aware of the difference. Embrace the challenges in your life outside the dojo as well. Notice where you are retreating and vow to change it. See what happens...take on the challenge. Embrace it!

In Gassho...

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