Living With Death: The Sojourn of The Classical Warrior
Conflict is at the cornerstone of daily existence. Not only people, but in nature as well. In the wild, predator and prey maintain a balance in the ecosystem, while at the molecular level, anti-bodies converge to fight off invading viruses and diseases. If the focal point of martial arts is dealing with conflict, then they well should be regarded as a metaphor for living.
Behind the advent of conflict is the possibility of annihilation- death. Death is a topic of major concern for all the world religions and philosophies. Carl Jung noted that the only way to have true passion for life is to embrace the fact that someday we are going to die. For the classical warrior, mortal combat was his chosen path. In his "Book of Five Rings", Miyamoto Musashi exclaims that there is a life beyond the dojo walls, that the aspiring trainee should become familiar with activities that will deepen his or her spirit; composing poetry or music, calligraphy, or painting. These become artifacts that will endure our physical lives. Martial arts reflects the art of living, of creating, and through creation, we sow the seeds for our true nature.