This part of the Kenpo Creed invites an introspective meditation on who we are in the various roles we undertake in our lives.
First of all, as human beings, we are hard wired to be on a quest for “inner peace”.
There is something within us that is always searching for a higher purpose and meaning in life.
Whatever philosophy or religion you embrace the bottom line is that the only way to achieve this “ultimate serenity”
is to continuously examine and understand our self. The search for personal identity is a strong driving force within the
human spirit and this drive is what keeps us going day by day. The conflict comes in when who we really are and
who we perceive we are, or would like to be, do not match. The physicality of Kenpo invites the student on a journey to find out who they really are by stripping away preconceived
notions and revealing the true self. This can be a difficult and even painful process at times.
It is at this point that separates the true warrior from the paper tiger.
No one likes looking at themselves in a less flattering light but it is not about like or dislike…
it is about knowing who you are, who you want to be and doing what it takes to get there.
“The conflict comes when who we really are
and who we perceive we are do not match.”
This is where many people give up…in the beginning training is easy and fun.
After awhile when the number of techniques increases and the katas get more complicated
many realize that the training is harder than they thought it was going to be and they come to a
point where they do not want to put in the effort to get where they thought they wanted to go.
There is nothing inherently wrong in this if the student accepts it but it is this very thing that must be
clear from the outset…where do you want to go? The goal must be clear from the outset…if it is not then
the student is just passing time in an activity that is not congruent with their value system and will not meet the desires of their heart.
This is not a bad thing, it just means karate is not for everyone and this is OK. That is why for every 100 white belts only 1 makes it to black belt.
It is not a matter of better or worse but that training allows the student to find out about themselves on a very deep level.
The challenge is that if the student finds out something that is not so pleasant are they going to let this keep them from accomplishing
their goal or are they going to use the obstacle as a way to improve themselves and take the next step in the journey toward that goal.
“…training allows the student to find out about
themselves on a very deep level.”
That is the cool thing about karate…it forces you to do things that you may not want to do so that you can become what you have always wanted to be.
This ultimate serenity is not a singular event to be reached but a process to endure.
From start to finish the training for the true martial artist is a map to navigate the inner terrain of the self.
It is a journey of personal growth and development…ENJOY THE RIDE !!!
Take care and see you in class…