Essays From The Master

Archive for September, 2012

The cycle of death is the cycle of life: change in order to remain vital

In combat as in life to repeat the same motions no matter the consequences is a waste of energy that robs an individual of vitality which in a fight can mean death and in life can mean the same at a slower pace. In combat one must be trained and have enough confidence in what one has been trained in to apply what one knows. One needs to be trained but not so much that the form that one has been taught is all that is expressed making one predictable. Being predictable in combat is an opening that an opponent can use and is a weakness that a foe can exploit. The form or forms one is taught as a warrior if they are to be fully effective must be a vehicle for the expression of the spirit of the warrior that uses the form or forms one has been taught. One must be trained to the point that one is not bound to any pattern but rather able to apply trained movements as needed without one’s next move being predictable.
The ability to change while remaining true to one’s self as expressed by one’s training is the mark of a warrior that has made his style his own. No two students of an art should use it the same way because each person should adapt the style in the best way that makes the most of his overt strengths and turns his weaknesses into strengths i.e. covert strengths. One can come to rely too much on overt strengths and thus what should be empowering becomes a source of weakness showing how the real enemy is always within. To remain vital in combat as in life the individual must balance his overt strengths with his covert strengths so that one is never predictable and being unpredictable one is open to the changes that come with life, change being an infinite resource if one has the will to use it. At the beginning of training learning of and precision of form is what is vital, however as the warrior progresses the exactness of form must be set aside in favor of adapting the principle of said form to the actual circumstance one faces in combat keeping one vital while not compromising the essence of what one has been taught. It is written, “That which can be set aside must be set aside in order to redeem that which contrary to negation that must be the truth.”
The fear of change and the resistance to change is conflated in the mind of many with the fear of death because both are threats to the ego. The warrior that is at peace with his ideals, has confidence enough in his ideals to let them reign when fears arise need not have any fear of death or change because fear or lack of fear if the will of the warrior is wrong the warrior will cease to be. If fear or lack of fear will not change the circumstances to combat, only one’s reaction to it, then why fear if it does not serve one’s ideals? Likewise if an ideal is disproven time and again then to deny change or the need of it is to deny reality and thus fall prey to self delusion and thus create one’s own death whether sooner or later. Knowledge can only be called wisdom when it has been shown to be applicable to circumstance no matter who uses said knowledge, wisdom like the truth has no agenda and it is wisdom that change and death are the only things that are certain in life. Knowledge of change can be seen as the “wisdom” of death and this wisdom is the peace of the warrior and he knows it to be isolation. It is written, “The common man abhors isolation while the superior man makes it his sanctuary.” This is why life must be distilled from what would seem the end of life because life feeds on life creating change under the mask of death.