Here in Heathrow airport ... Awaiting flight to Norway. It has been a full ten days, teaching a wide variety of people throughout the UK ... And still three more days of teaching ahead of me before flying back home. The thing that never ceases to amaze me is this, people are Passionate about martial arts training ... And I mean people from all walks of life.
People come to training for a variety of reasons ... Who knows exactly why any of us start our training. I think there are any reasons that are hidden deep beneath layers of the obvious, reasons that only be one more apparent as we experience more of life and more of training. One underlying driving force however, that many people share, is this ... We want to improve ourselves in some way ... We want a little more EXCELLENCE in our lives ... This may be in the form of confidence, better health, a new circle of friends .... But most of us are to some degree obviates to lift ourselves out of the 'mundane' , or out of the 'ordinary'. As I look out over the mat, any mat, I see people wanting to improve ... I can only admire that. We all struggle our way through life, each dealing with a never ending cycle of highs and lows ... But like the butterfly fighting it's way out of the cocoon, we strive to escape the ordinary and become something 'more'.
Through our training efforts, whatever they may be, we slowly learn to see things we could not previously see ... We learn to becoming less accepting of the 'good enough to get by' ethos that so many other people fall into ... Troyes dedicated and joyful practice, we may come to deeper understanding of concepts like, integrity, congruence, mindfulness, etc ... These are the real gems to be found in practice. They are words ... Yes ... Easy to say ... Easy to allow them to roll off the tongue ... Just as words like 'leverage' , 'strategy' are EASY to say ... Easy to use in a sentence .. But to understand and embody them as truths ... This is a process that can only unfold over time ... And after some considerable life experience. Such truths and others can almost certainly be found in any type of deep, prolonged, immersive and mindful study ... In the garden, in the temple ... On the mat.
We all set out on our journey, seeking perhaps some dry simple thing ... But as we stumble along, each in our own way, we kick out of the ground a truly precious gem here and there ... If only we look down and notice.
Best wishes all ... JBW