The Action and the Scenery

We are all responsible for other people. Our family and friends, students and teachers, co-workers, clients and customers, our neighbors, ourselves, and who knows how many others who may be influenced by what we do. 

We are practitioners. We train. As we do, we strengthen our body and mind, and refine our lives. Because we are practitioners, we seek out what will nourish us and avoid what will poison us.

 Because we are practitioners, and because we take care of the people who depend on us, we go forward each day with purpose. And we deepen our ability to achieve our purpose as we train and serve.

Guided by our mission it is easy to distinguish what we are doing from the scenery we are passing through.  When the scenery is beautiful, we do not get lulled by it. When the scenery is rough, we do not get discouraged. We proceed – with our training and with our responsibilities – to ourselves and others. We move toward our objective.

Whether that requires vigilance, ferocity or rest will change with circumstances. Our purpose with not. 

This is not just an idea. It is a training. Even if you agree wholeheartedly with this idea, under pressure, at some point, you will find it difficult to use it. Delight and despair may distract you. If you train with this idea, if you use it regularly, and apply it even when it is difficult to apply, you get better at it. It will be familiar. You will see the scenery for what it is. Your practice will advance. Your purpose will be fulfilled.


Post Copyright © 2020 by Jeffrey M. Brooks, author of The Good Fight – The Virtues and Value of the Martial Arts

Jeff Brooks is a 40-year practitioner of karate; for 20 years he was a writer for high profile public figures in business, government, media and the arts; after that he turned to crime, working as a police detective, federal investigator, and law enforcement instructor in multiple disciplines. He is the author of several books and hundreds of published articles on martial arts. 

Photo by Pexels

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