Another Question....

Another Question....

Postby Dave Young » Sun Oct 01, 2006 1:18 pm

There are many different reasons a person takes on the responsibility of training in the martial arts;

1. Hobby
2. For the physical or mental conditioning
3. As a sport
4. To help instill discipline
5. To kill some time until something else comes along
6. Bragging rights - (Everyone wants to add something to
their love me kiss me wall at home)
7. Just to test their own self
8. Because their mother, father or friends are doing it
9. Build some coordination
10. To save their life of the lives of family members
11. As pat of their occupation

and I am sure the list can go on, help me add some more....!

What motivates a student to learn when they are doing traditional martial arts for something more than the self protection or preservation of their live or family members?

Just a thought to ponder....share some of your thoughts?

Stay Safe, Stay Strong, and more importantly Stay A Live!

Dave Young
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Postby mhosea » Sun Oct 01, 2006 7:25 pm

When I started studying martial arts as as child it was for self-defense purposes. I have little angst about self-defense anymore, which is not to downplay the self-defense motivation in any way, but the simple fact of the matter is that self-defense considerations are not my motivators now. I do it now for fitness and for the mental benefits, with the self-defense aspects being something that gives meaning and purpose to the particular activities of it, i.e. why I do karate instead of simply practicing yoga or something. As a child I did not fully understand them, but as an adult, I subscribe to the Shoshin Nagamine's teachings on the matter:

Shoshin Nagamine: "Karate begins with courtesy and ends with it. No one is qualified to be a karateman without courtesy even if he excels in his technique. Courtesy means always asking yourself whether you are pursuing karate-do for the purpose of seeking peace and showing your deep respect for others."


Shoshin Nagamine: "Karate refers to a martial art developed for the purpose of defending one's self from imminent and illegal violence with the use of the strictly-trained body as a weapon. Karate-do, however means a way of life based on karate or karate-life, in which one conquers himself and comes off a winner without any use of the art in a strict sense. In other words, its significance lies in fighting down the inner enemies, which are greater than the external enemies, by building up a sound body and mind through painstaking discipline of the body and mind by means of karate practice."

The goal there is not merely to train a person to be a better fighter, but additionally to build a calm, assertive, and peaceful mind to go along with that. I think this is why Kanbun Uechi was reluctant to teach after the incident in China--a properly educated student was supposed to have been able to resolve a civil dispute peacefully.
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Thanks but I am not sure.....

Postby Dave Young » Sun Oct 01, 2006 9:39 pm

what your answers were to what questions. Even though I appreciate your series of quotes fro others...and a picture....I am really only interested in the individual or the persons response...their quotes and sayings..your opinions and ideas on the related subject titles...meaning your responses....Thanks

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Re: Thanks but I am not sure.....

Postby mhosea » Sun Oct 01, 2006 10:15 pm

While I, too, find "fivedragons" post difficult to fathom, my own post is pretty direct and complete about why *I* currently study karate. I cherry-picked the quotes to help explain what *I* think. I wouldn't quote Shoshin Nagamine on the importance of Zen, however, since I'm not very interested in Zen, and what he has written on that subject doesn't resonate with me. These quotes, however, do resonate very deeply with me on this subject, assuming that I didn't misunderstand your question.

EDIT: To be clear, the quotes explain and put in context what I meant by mental benefits (my words), since I thought that was pretty vague by itself. Stryke expressed the same general idea when he noted that it helped keep him sane and be a gentler person.
Last edited by mhosea on Mon Oct 02, 2006 4:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Thanks Mike

Postby Dave Young » Sun Oct 01, 2006 10:57 pm

I appreciate your reply....

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Postby Stryke » Sun Oct 01, 2006 11:12 pm

I kind of agree with Fivedragons (expects to vanish in a puff of logic)

I do beleive some of us just have it in our blood , If I didnt have an outlet I`d be chasing adventure and end up on one side of the law or the other .

Some were born warriors , end up working doors , or policing fights/partys even when it wasnt intended .

Maybe it`s a sheepdog mindset , coupled with a need to test ones own limits .

It keeps me sane and lets me be a gentler person day to day IMHO .

It`s a methodone type of Budo .....

Maybe because it`s something folks thought i`d never be any good at :lol: :lol:

More than anything else it`s a tool to confront myself .

Postby MikeK » Mon Oct 02, 2006 2:10 am

Opportunity. The guy who has been instructing me for the last three years is passing on a lot of his knowledge to me and considering his background it was something that I can't pass up. More reasons than that but that's one you may have not heard yet.
I was dreaming of the past...
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Postby Stryke » Mon Oct 02, 2006 5:08 am

Mike one of the few cliches I actually have come to beleive .

when the student is ready the teacher will appear

of course the student often has to do the looking , it doesnt negate the work part ;)

Postby 2Green » Sun Oct 22, 2006 10:32 pm

Answer # 7 comes closest for me ("to test your own self"), as to why I started, but not why I stayed (8 years continuous, as of October 6.)

I considered myself a well-rounded individual spiritually, intellectually, socially, artistically and creatively, but I knew there was a hole in my makeup, and that hole was: "physically".

At 5'6" 150 lb. I wasn't really able to do much as far as self-defense was concerned, so I studied and carried a variety of personal weapons.
However, that's not an ideal thing, as these can be lost, taken away,left at home or undeployable in time.
Plus, it really doesn't solve the personal problem of physical inadequacy -- perhaps it even highlights it more.

So after many long years I started at age 47.

But my reasons for STAYING changed.
Once the novelty wore off and the reality of physical encounters, Karate or not, set in, I grew more and more interested in the training and how it was creating a physical and mental transformation in me, not to sound too overblown.

I just can't leave it now.It's become such a part of my self-identity, and I feel physically wonderful after a class, and the next day too.
My abilities have grown, my fear of physical encounters is on a leash now, and I feel like I've "filled that hole" at least partially.

The music spoke to me. I felt compelled to answer.
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That was a great post THANKS

Postby Dave Young » Sun Oct 22, 2006 10:42 pm

It is always nice to see positive outcomes in regards to the martial arts. Thanks for sharing that with all of us.

Great job!

Stay Safe, Stay Strong most importantly Stay ALive!
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Postby harry » Tue Oct 24, 2006 3:37 pm

Hi Dave, nice thread.

As mentioned I beleive our motivation to train changes over time. My own "journey" started 'cause my mom was tired of my butt getting "whupped" when I was young.

Coming off 11 years of no training the motivation was to "do" something more exciting for excercise than the treadmill.

Now I train for the knowledge. Not only for what I can keep but for what I can share with others.

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Postby Ryokan » Sun Oct 29, 2006 3:08 am


I started with aikido. I'd read George Leonard's book <u>The Ultimate Athlete</u> in high school, and I was impressed with the tales of people who averted fights by their presence alone. I vowed to study the art, one day.

Having been raised in a family environment where "power over" was the way things worked (and, being the child, I usually lost), "power of" sounded like a great idea to me.
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