In the previous two articles we have discussed six of the nine martial arts competencies central to building a great life. In the first article the competencies highlighted were foucsed on learning skills. The second article highlighted skills of action. In this final aritcle the competencies of living are the focus. As martial arts students you learn better ways to learn and how to take action to make your life better. As a martial artist, the ultimate outcome of all that training, you are challenged to live those lessons. It all starts with…
An Orderly Lifestyle
A challenge in today’s fast-paced world is that of living an orderly lifestyle. When we live in a clean and orderly manner we find a special sort of peace and contentment. The simplicity of a traditional martial art can help students find this peace and show them how to develop contentment in their lives. From the simple white uniforms to the order and structure of classes, the arts offer a window into a simple and uncluttered lifestyle. This lesson is not always accepted by the student as they begin. It often takes time and repeated exposure to the structure of the school for a student to accept and internalize the behavior patterns involved in an orderly lifestyle. However, once we experience the benefits of living in an orderly manner our lives become more fulfilling and enjoyable.
A Servant’s Heart and a Generous Hand
When you find a school that not only teaches traditional martial arts but incorporates the life skills that create great leaders, you have found a place to grow. Two aspects of life that can add greatly to your enjoyment are what you hold in your heart and how you apply your hands. In a good martial arts school the students will learn that to be a great leader they must first be a willing servant. They learn to serve the needs of others in programs such as LeadershipNOW, becoming great leaders by putting the needs of others above their own. However, it takes more than a Servant’s Heart to become a great leader. You must also have a “generous hand”. Students of the martial arts can learn firsthand what it looks like to give of one’s time and talents to help others, to use one’s hands in generosity instead of greed. They will see this in not only their instructors, but in their fellow students, people who are going out of their way to help others both inside and outside the school.
Sincere Respect for All
While the roots of all martial arts lie in violence, combat, and self-defense they have grown to become about much more. An oath repeated in ATA Schools such as Pilsung ATA Martial Arts at the beginning of every class demonstrates this aspect of the practice perfectly. “Respect for my Juniors and Seniors!” is the last line in the promise that each student makes as they begin class. This idea of respect, for both junior and senior ranks and ages, is not only strictly enforced, but it is nurtured within the traditional martial arts school. It is the objective of every good martial arts instructor to help students understand the power of respect for others in their community. While the learning of what respect is and how to live it starts in the school, the martial arts can teach a person to have sincere respect for everyone they encounter in life.
While any one of these nine core competencies of the traditional martial arts can lead to a happier and more fulfilling life, their combined power is far greater. To unleash the full potential of your life, or in the lives of your children, get involved in the martial arts. Attend classes regularly and seek to learn more than simply how to punch or kick someone. Make these core competencies a part of your life!