One thing I have learned to appreciate throughout the years is that martial arts are indeed that, an art. I’ve tried my hand at a fair share of martial arts and the secret I’ve learned is that 99% of people are wrong in their view of martial arts. Let me explain.
To truly understand martial arts you MUST focus on the Art. Yes, I agree 100% that martial arts were designed as self-defense and most people get involved for the multiple benefits but, that’s not why they stay, is it?
Let’s be honest, how many 5 and 10 year old “black belts” do you see these days? Do you truly believe that these kids would stand a chance against even the smallest adult? Of course not.
Now, I understand that belts, rank, and promotions make a business, but I’m simply suggesting that the martial aspect is not the true focus and that the Art is more important.
To put it simply, Art is an Expression. Like a painter brings life to canvas or a musician composes beautiful melodies; we should express our beauty.
Expression is what martial arts are about. Whether for self-defense, competition, or recreation, martial arts are always art. They’re meant to be pure but many times are perverted into violence. I believe each artist should eventually create their own interpretation of art, while striving to keep it pure.
Your goal should be create your own interpretation of the arts; just like the true masters.
Look at Bruce Lee who made an impact on the world or the Gracie family which has revolutionized a sport and industry. They’ve expressed themselves as artists.
Would you take an art class where your teacher told you to paint exactly like them; no exceptions? No way, you would want to learn the art of painting and eventually create your own master pieces.
A quote from, The Book of the Samurai, sums it up best,
“It is spiritless to think that you cannot attain to that which you have seen and heard the masters attain. The masters are men. You are also a man. If you think that you will be inferior in doing something, you will be on that road very soon”.
The benefits in training Martial Arts are endless. Whether as a professional, for sport, or simply as a hobby you have much to gain and nothing to lose.
Everyone who begins wishes they had begun sooner. Don’t be one of those people.