Your Mission, should you choose to accept it!
So you’ve been training for 10, 20 or even 30 years or more.
By now, you know what you are doing, don’t you?
You should, or you have to ask yourself, what have you been doing and whom have you been doing it with?
When you bear in mind that a surgeon trains for 8 to 10 years and is then let loose to cut people open, rumage about a bit, and sew them back up again. (sorry surgeons). Your 10 or 20 years plus of Martial Arts training means you should have at least a "fair idea” by now of how to Kick and Punch! (Cause thats all there is to it eh?). But you get my point, you have dedicated a large amount of time and energy and should be fairly skilled in your choosen art.
Now I understand that Martial Artists are an honourable, honest and up right lot and you wouldn’t be disloyal, but just suppose for a minute that your Grand Master (Chief Instructor) with approaching 50 years martial training behind him, gave you a mission.
YES YOU! -- A MISSION !!!
You see he’s been doing what he’s been doing for most of the last couple of decades and he realises that may be just may be the world has moved on and so must what he teaches, but hey, he’s in his 70s or 80s and he has some great students (he’s taught them the very best of what he knows, his students understand the guiding principles of what he teaches).
They could help… couldn’t they? Could you?
You see, your mission, should you choose to accept it (with the blessing of you Grand Master, or Significant Instructor) is to make your Martial Art better, yes that’s right your Grand Master knows you are the one who could improve, if not everything, then some things.
Improve things for your students, improve things for your community, and find a better way to deliver the lessons, make them more fun, or more effective, or work better in a real street brawl.
Yes still YOU.
Your mission is to critically examine everything you do, examine its purpose, study why you do what you do and then come up with a better way of getting the same results.
Well would you choose to accept the mission?
If you do, you could you make things better. You would be a hero!
But then what?
Certainly, if the mission was from your Grand Master, he would welcome your findings, discuss your suggestions, examine your reasons for the new practice methods and implement them throughout the organisation.
He would wouldn’t he?
But what if he didn’t give you the mission, what if I did?
Well that’s my challenge you to do right now.
That’s right I challenge you to accept this mission, critically examine everything you do and work out what the objectives of each exercise are and find ways to achieve the same outcomes in a better ways.
If you can’t come up with anything better, then stick with what you do, if you can improve things…. well that's where the real conundrum raises its ugly head.
Do you implement it?
The better, new improved way or just carry on following the old system?
You see, if you don’t implement the new way, in my opinion you would be short changing your students and not give them the best Martial Arts you could.
So its best not to try and improve things then?
Just leave the thinking to the “Old Masters”. Just carry on doing what you do because you don’t need to have an opinion; you’re just a follower, aren’t you?
In my humble opinion, and it’s my blog, to follow Grand Master XYZ or some Historical Martial figure, blindly, unquestioningly and without critical examination, is not to honour them, but the very opposite, its to disservice to them.
A Martial Arts Master (alive or dead) who has striven for excellence for a life time, would want their followers to continue to improve what they had created, to stay current, relevant and build upon his study and sacrifice?
They would want that, wouldn’t they?
Does the fact that Ferrari designs a new car this year, dishonour the designers of the previous fantastic cars from the last century? Of course not, the new designers honour and respect their heritage but the new car still gets anti lock brakes and LED lights.
So come on guys, after all those years you have spent studying and training, you are an expert in your art. Surely, if you are respectful of the past and look toward the future, change or improvement must be welcomed.
Go on … be brave and be prepared to take your Martial Art forward.
Well are you going to accept your mission?
This blog will self destruct in 30 seconds......... ahh you are that old.
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