martial art way of life
What is the martial art lifestyle and why does it have a positive effect?
Different people may have differing ideas about it. My perspective is based on my experience growing up in London and then training in China and Thailand. I would say daily training, meditation and community are the things that are common in martial art culture around the world and appear to have the biggest positive effect.
In the martial art lifestyle training is just done as a way of life like brushing your teeth. That is not to say that we don’t have goals to aim at but it means that physical training is a pillar of discipline that is done no matter what. It is a daily practice that is done to take total control of yourself and refresh you completely.
for physical/mental health
Training everyday no matter what will change the way you feel positively like nothing else will. Every time you train your biochemistry changes and you get release of endorphins , this is fact. Unfortunately People often think “ I will train when I feel good” that is like saying I will brush my teeth when they get clean. Its the the other way round! No matter what you are feeling now you will feel better when you train! And so training everyday no matter what is a direct road to good emotions, physical health and fitness. It will change your biochemistry and neurology to enjoy life more and smash through challenges in all areas.
How do you gain self discipline? how do you become mentally stronger? well seeing as the body and mind are the same thing it all comes down to physical training. Hard physical training is ultimately just a form of willpower and concentration. Take control of your body and you control your mind. Training everyday gives you an iron will and the ability to control yourself. That is why martial art lifestyle makes an individuals life better, beacuse it makes you strong enough in your will to achive the things you actually want. Making the decision to train everyday no matter what is a powerful decision that changes everything. Training is a pilllar of strength that stays constant no matter how messed up everything else can get. This is one thing that you can control completely and that has a huge effect on your ability to control everything else. Taking control of your mind, body with just a few mins of training every day makes it much easier to keep everything else in your life in order. That is good for the individual and it is good for the whole of society.
learn to learn anything though repetition
Martial art is essentially taking hard skills which seem impossible and repetitively training them everyday. Training is like an obsession, we do thousands of repetitions and never give up no matter how many times we fail. We become totally absorbed in the process until the movement becomes a part of us. This could be jujitsu, it could be stretching, it could be MuayThai and it could be a difficult strength exercise. Through sheer dedication to training no matter what , happy , sad, tired , sick , sunshine or rain, we mould our skills and body in the fire of our will.
Once you learn this process you will literally be able to apply it to anything. Never give up and keep trying till you get it right. The key is finding meaning in monotonous repetition , this is where meditation can help because meditation and repetitive training go hand in hand.
Meditation is the second pillar of the martial art lifestyle. Meditation teaches you to empty your mind, adjust your attention focus and calm emotions. Martial artists have used it for thousands of years either as a spiritual practice or to make them fight better. Many people may not believe it possible but though meditation you can reach states of consciousness similar to being high on drugs. The only difference is that where drugs cloud the mind and make a person stupid, meditation makes the person hyper focused and sharper while feeling high.
This is the state of emptiness achieved through consistent meditation. A state where thoughts and emotions calm down and a person can just remain fully focused in the moment. That state is a peaceful and energizing in itself which is why many people are drawn to it. However It also brings a higher ability to regulate emotion, control attention focus and tolerate pain. After all when you can control the breathing you can control the mind.
So It makes sense for martial artists to meditate beacuse it leads to better physical and mental health, higher emotional intelligence and it will make you fight better. Its good for individuals and good for the world.
The third pillar and the last reason why martial art lifestyle can bring positivity to the world is that martial art usually revolves around community. After all you do need people to train with! And anything which brings people together is certainly good for the physical and mental health of society.
People are social animals and we actually deteriorate when we spend too much time alone. In prehistoric times society was tribal we literally lived and died with our tribes day and night. And then later on in history we had institutions such as the church, or the local village communities where people remained connected.
Nowadays in Western culture we have abandoned traditional religions beacuse they were too backward, so that source of community is gone. Now people don’t live in small villages and tribes where everyone knows each other. We often live in big cities where people don’t even know their neighbours. On top of this family structure has mostly broken down and so many people don’t even have that many family connections.
This total lack of connection in the western world has led to an epidemic of loneliness, depression and suicide. Beacuse as previously mentioned humans are supposed to live in communities. Luckily there are many communities that a person can join but really we need more.
Martial art is one community which pretty much anyone can join as long as you are willing to train. And you can start training from young and continue well into old age beacuse there are all different forms of training that you can do. When you are young you can train more aggressive things and when you are older there are softer forms of training but there will always be something you can be involved in.
In summary the combination , of daily training , meditation and community connection is positive and the vision of creating mma dojo is that it would have a good effect on the people and bring positivity in to the world.