I’d like to start out by apologizing for the erratic nature of this blog. This is my personal digital real estate and I will be writing freely about my journey as a martial artist as it continually unfolds. I will do my best to try and connect everything – but I can’t comfortably make any promises that everything will fit together smoothly.
The reason I am writing this blog is to keep an unofficial record of my growth starting from March 2019 on. I am a self-trained martial artist with 7 years experience. At the start of my training I kept daily journals. I would write before and after my training. Putting down my thoughts, feelings, expectations, and as things happened in my life that did not directly involve my martial arts training, I would talk about them in the journals too. I kept up with the journals for a few years and ended up filling 11 composition books worth of entries. But as life moved on and I moved from city to city – I felt that it was time to let go of the journals. So I disposed of them to keep them from “falling in the wrong hands.”
Years later, I’m coming back to this daily journal practice because recently I realized just how critical and rejuvenating my martial arts practice is to who I am as a being. Martial arts was the first of my passions, and being self-trained, it was the first thing that I felt was my own. No one can take ownership of my progress, training, or knowledge of the martial arts except myself. I won’t go too far into the details, but the past few years have been some of the darkest of my life. I’ve had to face challenges both emotionally and physically that people lacking in discipline and resilience could not face… I owe my strength of character to my journey in the martial arts.
I honestly believe that The Great Spirit, or God, has guided me and brought me to different truths throughout my training. Even though I am self-trained and have spent countless hours on my own in my process of learning – I never felt alone. Whenever I train, I feel surrounded by an abundance of healing energy. And regardless of what has taken place or what is to come on any particular day, I feel at home and at peace. The mental, physical, and spiritual benefits of martial arts training are as close to coming to know The Great Spirit in my life.
Three days ago, I reached a point where I felt utterly drained, physically and emotionally. Nothing horrible has been happening in my life recently. But I was still incredibly weakened. So I decided that it was time for me to return to training for hours everyday. I have never abandoned martial arts. I feel that true martial artists would never and can never turn away from the martial arts. But as my life filled up with tasks and work and school and etc… I stopped giving myself the time I needed to meditate and train. I put my own needs on the back burner to try and juggle so many unnecessary things in life.
With the start of 2019, I decided to cut out the abundance of unnecessary tasks and activities in my life so I could bring in some balance and peace of mind. From 2016 to 2018 I had stretched myself way too thin, and doing so caused me to seriously lose sight of what is important to me and of what my heart’s desire is. But as I consciously integrated balance into my life, and reached out spiritually to The Great Spirit for guidance, I started to see my life course correct. And that “divine intervention”, if you will, has lead me back to fully pursuing martial arts.
Over the course of these last three days I have spent several hours meditating and pushing my current skills from self-defense and fighting methods, to more artistic acrobatic advanced martial skills. And part of me is wondering why I ever allowed myself to drift so far away from my path. But I am more than grateful to be back on track.
“Just because someone loses their way, doesn’t mean they’re lost forever.”– Anon
I’d like to end this first introductory entry by saying: To my fellow martial artists, regardless of your experience level – you have chosen one of the greatest, most rewarding, and most empowering ways of life. So please, stay ever-appreciative and never lose sight of the why behind martial arts.