Posts Tagged ‘beliefs’

5 things you should never say or think…

ktadmin Posted in Karate, State of Mind, Training notes,Tags: , , , , , , ,
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We live in a sensitive world. That doesn’t make it right. Below are 5 things people say almost daily that most people find “acceptable”. That doesn’t make it right. I was raised in a sticks-and-stones household. I went to a sticks-and-stones high school. For some the term sticks-and-stones may be a foreign concept, that is sad. For you, it means that “sticks and stones” (and fists and feet) will hurt me. Words only have the power I assign to them. It means be a Man and get a thick skin, actions speak louder than words. It also means be truthful, honest and responsible or you will be called out.

Sadly this is a nearly dead culture in America today, I would guess in most of the world too. Still not understanding what I am getting at? Here are 5 things you should never say or think, but they are very prevalent in society today. If you are a Karate practitioner, you should be familiar with this list, if you aren’t your training may not be complete or your Sensei finds them acceptable.

“I can’t do that.”

If somebody had said this he would’ve found himself challenged and forced to the attempt and success. Unless a physical handicap is present, replace your “can” or “can’t,” with “will” or “won’t.” There’s always a way. Find it.

“Sorry I’m late.”

You don’t hear this in a culture of accountability because expectations are set, and if they’re not met then there are repercussions. Not to say that expectations don’t change, but it’s not for a lack of effort in fulfilling them.

“I’m sorry I hurt your feelings.”

Seriously, Feelings? What’s that?

“I don’t know.”

While admitting uncertainty is perfectly fine, the statement alone leaves much to be desired. Instead, try saying “I don’t know yet, but I’ll find out and get back to you.” This latter part is what demonstrates a proactive mindset and a willingness to work, rather than leaving your ambition open to interpretation.

“Let’s talk this out.”

stop-be-a-manThere is nothing like the camaraderie. Nothing else even comes close to paralleling the tight bond, unity and cohesion found amongst men you train with. Having said that, some people just need a good whoopin’ once in a while to keep egos in check, and fellow students and friends are no different. Confronting difficult issues and learning from them is what turns mediocrity into greatness.

Thanks to this article for giving me the basis for this post.

Thanksgiving

ktadmin Posted in Events & Holidays, Religion,Tags: , , ,
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Today we gather, we eat, we celebrate, we relax, we eat some more, but many of us miss the Thankful part of the day. We miss what we should be thankful for; and we miss what others are thankful for. Today try to see what you have to be thankful for. Try to see what others are thankful for; like the companionship and warmth of a family gathering; a reprieve from what may be the solitude they live daily. Or simply for a warm meal in a safe environment, things most of us take for granted. Be thankful.  In our recognition of our blessings comes peace of heart.  Peace of heart makes us content and calm.  So,

Be Thankful

I leave you with this prayer:

Thank you, Father, for having created us and given us to each other in the human family. Thank you for being with us in all our joys and sorrows, for your comfort in our sadness, your companionship in our loneliness. Thank you for yesterday, today, tomorrow and for the whole of our lives. Thank you for friends, for health and for grace. May we live this and every day conscious of all that has been given to us. Amen.

 

The Way

ktadmin Posted in A Zen Thing, Religion, State of Mind, Video,Tags: , , , , , ,
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The Way we should live but usually don’t. As Martial Artists we are supposed to be role models, we usually are not.  Like so many we do things for selfish reasons.  We miss the multitude of opportunities God sends our way to do those small (and big) things and improve the lives of our fellow man.  Selfish.  Any discipline requires some denial of the self, be it diet to lose weight or not watching TV so you can practice that kata or technique a few more times.  If only we would apply that same sacrifice in our dealings with others.  The noise of the modern world seduces us so we can ignore those small important acts of kindness and love which help us grow and find internal peace.  What surprised me was the fact that it was a TVC Thai Life Insurance commercial/public service announcement that inspired me to reflect on this very fact…

Who did you help today?

Critical Thinking by John Wayne

ktadmin Posted in A Zen Thing, Articles of Interest, Politics, Video,Tags: , , , , , , , ,
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This is an interesting interview with John Wayne, from 1975.  It is interesting because what he says in directly applicable to current events.  The Duke speaks to the tactics used by liberals then and still in use today.  Yes, John Wayne is something of a hero for me.  Yes, John Wayne wasn’t his real name; the audio is important for what he says, not necessarily who is saying it.

LANGUAGE WARNING, the audio contains some swears and curses that may not be appropriate for children.

The audio starts out with this quote… “Hell yes, I’m a liberal. I listen to both sides before I make up my mind. Doesn’t that make you a liberal? Not in today’s terms, it doesn’t. These days, you have to be a fucking left-wing radical to be a liberal. Politically, though … I’ve mellowed.”

Another great John Wayne quote:
“I’m quite sure that the concept of a Government-run reservation… seems to be what the socialists are working for now — to have everyone cared for from cradle to grave…. But you can’t whine and bellyache ’cause somebody else got a break and you didn’t, like those Indians are. We’ll all be on a reservation soon if the socialists keep subsidizing groups like them with our tax money.”- John Wayne

The audio is from TonyMacklin.net, the interview took place in 1975.  The complete interview can be heard here.

Following isn’t just for Twitter…

ktadmin Posted in Religion,Tags: , , , ,
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follow-me-really

Keep your head in the game

ktadmin Posted in A Zen Thing, State of Mind, Training notes,Tags: , , , ,
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Your Legs are not giving out;
Your Mind is giving up.

Defeat is easy. There are always a million excuses lying around for you to grab onto. We typically defeat ourselves, but that moment before we allow defeat there is an opportunity to be better than you are. Face it your mind wants to give up before my body does, all you need to do is utter the phrase…I can’t… Be better than you are, say yes I can, instead and tough it out. This applies during Training, on the Mat or in Life.

Keep your head in the game, say I can…and believe it. If you truly can’t, you need to be honest about why not and work to overcome the reason. “I can’t” means you won’t because it is the easier way. Take the road less travelled, …because you can…

Afraid of what?

ktadmin Posted in A Zen Thing, Awareness, Quotes, State of Mind,Tags: , , , , , ,
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You can do anything if you’re not afraid.  – from the movie “Daredevil” (2003)

Well almost anything.  Let us remember this is a quote from a movie.  And not a very good movie either starring Ben Affleck.  Regardless the quote bares further contemplation.

Everyone is afraid of something, unless they are insane.  Some are afraid of the dark, some water, some spiders or snakes.  Even the most fearless warrior is afraid of something, even if he never shows it.  There is a difference between being afraid and appearing afraid.  Each has its place.  Fear is a normal response to things that are new, unexpected or we have been conditioned to fear.  I’ll admit it, I am afraid of spiders.  My fear stems from being forced, by my parents, into a spiderweb filled storage crawl space under my childhood home 2-3 times a year.  I had to crawl into the 3 foot high, dirt floor space a good 4 feet to reach the chain on the light.  There were spiders everywhere.  Even though I know where my fear comes from and I can mostly control it, and I understand spiders aren’t usually the bad guys, the fear is still there.  You won’t know it if you throw one in my lap, but my pulse will elevate!

Controlling fear is the key to success.  When we spar we begin with a fear of being hit, this leads us to flinch and thereby typically lose the match.  As we train and gain more self-control we learn to control our fear and thereby our flinch, so we might begin to win a few matches.  The fear however is constant as hopefully no one likes to get hit.  The fear will lessen but that is because we are masters of the fear instead of the fear mastering us.  The path to self-control and controlling your fear starts with an act of sheer will, the decision that you are not going to flinch or run screaming like a girl!  (Sorry girls)

There you have it, boil it all down and fear is a decision.  Following the Sept 11th attack on the World Trade Centers, many of the people trapped in the buildings chose not to be afraid of what they knew was about to happen.  Instead a few of them called loved ones to share a final moment, one such caller was described as calm.  I am sure others were consumed by fear, for themselves or their loved ones.  None of us can say with honesty or certainty how we would react in a similar situation.  We react to fear based on the situation, on our state of mind, on so many factors, but if we train to control our fears beginning in the sparring ring we will be better equip to face and handle our fears when they catch us unaware.

If you are a person of faith I would add fear, like worry, is a lack of faith.

What does your 2014 look like?

ktadmin Posted in Articles of Interest, Competition, Karate, Training notes,Tags: , , , , , ,
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Forget New Year resolutions, they don’t work for a litany of reasons. One of those reasons is you are taught through media and social engineering that you are OK the way you are. You are taught there is no ideal or perfect way or state of being. You are taught to be consumers not producers. Your kids are taught so too. There is a constant onslaught of relax, chill, you are fine, be happy with yourself, and a host of other new age bull crap messages. We are taught to look outward not inward. Not feeling well, buy something! Where is the proof? If you need proof you are blind, but here is a graphic of the average American that demonstrates what I am talking about:
1985-2013 how things have changed.

What was once uncommon has become common.  What was once sought after is now shunned.  We have let ourselves be led to an instant gratification society, we don’t want to work, we want it now, no pain, no sweat, no effort.  I see this every week no matter where I go.

This pertains to the Martial Arts because people don’t earn their belts anymore, they buy them (with rare exceptions).  The funny thing is they don’t even know they are doing it, buying their advancement.  Most Martial Arts schools know that in order for students to “stick” with their training, they have to keep them interested because if success doesn’t come quickly it will be abandon as too hard.

Today everyone gets a trophy!  There is no First place…it is disgusting.  The sad part is it is pervasive in every aspect of our society and like any cancer it is spreading.  The only solution is to push back, to push a culture of success and failure, to stress the importance of hard work and sweat, personal reflection and improvement.  Our greatest competitor should be ourselves, but that takes honesty, did you give it your all?  Was that your best?  No excuses, excuses are the slippery slope to mediocrity.

 

The 2nd Ammendment

ktadmin Posted in Articles of Interest, Awareness, Law Enforcement, News, Politics, Self-Defense, Video,Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
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Think you know what the 2nd amendment is for, think the world safe, think you know what you are talking about?  Invest 7 minutes, watch the video and perhaps you will be able to answer these questions honestly.  Or you can remain blind and deceived by the lord of lies and his minions…

IF only our citizens would elect someone with this much honesty and fortitude.  Alas we would rather elect a celebrity than a leader or statesman.  How blind are ‘we the people’ that we continue to be so short sighted…

PS:  I’ve been looking for a reason to use the world minions!!

Study to Train

ktadmin Posted in Articles of Interest, Control, Karate, State of Mind, Training notes,Tags: , , , , ,
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Why do we train?  Why do we study the Martial Arts?  Why do we do all these forms?  Why don’t we just fight?  Why? Why?

It is the classic question posed in hundreds of films like the Karate Kid.  The answer isn’t as crystal clear and the payout isn’t as dramatic in real life.  In real life Daniel Larusso (played by Ralph Macchio) would have probably lost.  That doesn’t mean he wouldn’t learn the same lessons, but it wouldn’t be a box office success!  This is something however you can’t read about, you have to experience it, even then very few look past the failure to learn anything.  If you are one that does than I commend you, you are on your way to Mastery of, well anything.  Where am I going with all this?

Why do we say study instead of train with respect to the Martial Arts?  Because we train to learn basic skills and physical movements.  We study so we can learn to extend, to go beyond what training alone can teach.  Kind of like the difference between Po and Tai Lung (in Kung Fu Panda), Po studied where Tai Lung trained.  Tai Lung was limited by his physical self.  Whereas Po went beyond his physical self, allowing him to push beyond his physical limits and succeed.  I know that is kind of deep and to some it will sound like rubbish, take from it what you will.

The point is, the martial arts teaches us to look within; evaluate our motives, behavior, beliefs, mindset, in total, our self.  Unfortunately for some this becomes a religious experience, it is not, nor should it be.  The martial arts can exist harmoniously with religion but using it to replace religion is to train without studying.  Ultimately the martial arts teaches us control of the Self.  This is similar to Self-Control but not the same.  When you are angry you demonstrate self-control by not hitting or screaming at the person who angered you.  When you are in control of the Self, you see the anger but are not affected by the anger, you are calm, cool and collected.  Think about a situation, which is more frightening, an opponent who is red in the face with anger or one who is calm, cool and collected?  That is what I thought.  What is it about the calm, cool, collected that you find so unnerving?  When you attain it you will understand that there is nothing and everything to be feared.  Bruce Lee was known for his control of Self.

The Martial Way is not easy.  First come training, which leads to Self-Control, more training opens the mind to Study, which if pursued, leads to control of Self.  Sounds easy enough, just five “simple” steps!!  But the way is hard; the way we live our lives; the society we live in makes it even harder.  There is to much noise in most of our lives, even if we don’t engage it, the noise is all around us (in Western Societies).  The Martial Way is quiet, reflective and simple.  Quiet the opposite of the way the world around us suggests we should live our lives!  Self-control is the first major hurtle and honestly our society and values of instant gratification and worldly pursuits make it a difficult hurtle to master.  Do you have what it takes?  Will power and focus?

What I am describing is not the Martial Arts of the MMA or UFC.  That is not to say those are dishonorable pursuits or lacking in any way, honestly I admire their training and dedication.  But they where the trappings of the world, lots of noise and little control of Self.  Could you see Bruce Lee in a MMA or UFC commercial?  Perhaps.  Regardless of the path you choose, the path always starts the same…Training!  That’s right, get up, stop reading now and Train. (but when you finish training come back to read some more)

First comes Training, so Study to Train!