Thursday, May 04, 2006

Talk Is Cheap

Aspiring martial artists are an enthusiastic lot. They have found inside themselves the capacity to dream. As one who takes the position that dreams are made to happen, I believe that making them come to fruition is our birthright. And as martial artists, particularly those who aspire to black belt, this vision is indeed special. To maintain your quest for the extra-ordinary, do not discuss your goals or aspirations with anyone. Other practitioners and family members would be excluded from this rule, of course. Invoking ego through discussion, or trying to impress others with grandiose boasting will automatically disempower your ability to manifest your dreams.

"Inner growth... does not thrive on talk", wrote Draeger. An Eastern proverb states, Who so ever knows, speaks not. Who so ever speaks, knows not. Most of the qualified martial artists and instructors I know are generally quiet and reserved. It's likely that many of the people they interact with on a daily basis have no idea what they're involved in. In a memorable scene from the movie The Karate Kid, the main character is saved from a certan thrashing from the local karate bullies with the help of his neighbor, Mr. Miyagi, a now-revealed karate master.

KID: You never told me you knew karate!

MR. MIYAGI: You never asked.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've heard artists say the same thing: do not discuss your projects.

The internet provides a bit of a quandary on that, doesn't it? People just love to talk and talk and talk. (I haven't discussed certain topics myself, for the very reason that revealing things too early has had the effect of spoiling them, in the past.)

1:26 PM  
Blogger Mathieu said...

Point taken, again.

2:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've thought of that too when I blog about the martial arts. Problem is I like to blog about them and tend to think things through better if I write them out. I also like reading other blogs that do the same and talk to other martial artists via the net. There has to be some Taoist balance I suppose.

5:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I guess I should cancel my blog. . . I think there's a balance though. There are those who talk about their goals because it means something to them. There are those who talk about their goals because they think it will mean something to others, as in they like to brag.

9:37 PM  
Blogger FrogMan said...

" Invoking ego through discussion, or trying to impress others with grandiose boasting will automatically disempower your ability to manifest your dreams."

This, I agree with wholeheartedly. Bragging and boasting is really uncool, just as is moaning about the fact the one thinks he is ready to test for a belt and his instructor has not put him on said test (happens too often, sometimes from the parents)...

As for not discussing your goals, well, as it's been said by others here, the net is a whole other thing. I'm more outspoken around here than I am in life, honestly. Talking about what I want to do, or how I'm trying to do it, well I find that it helps me focus on it.

Still, very good food for thoughts you gave us here.

FrogMan aka Steve.

9:56 PM  
Blogger John Vesia said...

Thank you all for your comments. Writing and talking are not the same thing. There's a BIG difference between posting a blog that will be read by people who share a similar interest with you, and indiscriminately bragging about yourself to just anybody.

2:44 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I agree too, that there is perhaps a protocol or balance in discussing it, whether in blogs or out loud. For me, while I do write a blog as well, I DO discuss that I take taekwondo, not so much for the attention or "oh wow" factor which is not warranted, but rather to share the positive things I gain from my learning experience in the process of earning my black belt and learning to be an instructor. I had attended a convention last year for my business (not TKD related), and the whole theme was dreams and goals, and the main message was that if you don't outwardly qualify your dreams, as in sharing them out loud with others, then you are less likely to work to acheive those dreams. I find that's true. Even as I was debating about joining up with our leadership/instructor program, I talked about it a lot with many people, TKD related and not, until I came to a decision. To speak of yourself that you're involved in martial arts merely to show off or have one-upmanship is tacky. To speak of your involvement to say, hey, this happens to be what I do, and I like it, this is how I benefit from it, and this is how it's part of my life is a different thing. I guess I also think of it like The Force in Star Wars. It's your choice to choose the Dark Side or the Jedi side, and it's better to choose the Jedi side. ;-)

11:39 PM  
Blogger John Vesia said...

Yes, talking "merely to show off" is clearly unethical. But it goes beyond that. One's vision or dream can be very personal. Be mindful of who you share your story with.

1:22 AM  
Blogger Mir said...

I really enjoyed the concept presented here! (especially the reference to Karate Kid)

I do not think that the idea of this posting is to prevent martial artists from blogging, but more, the warning is to remind us of humility.

Blogging is a way of sharing accumulated experiences, questions, thoughts, aspirations, and mistakes. The people that come to share, and read get to know the spirit of the person typing through their words. They are encouraged to follow their own paths, and dreams by sharing in the paths of others.

However, going around to all of our neighbours, co-workers, kid's teachers, and "bragging" about how I have achieved Black belt, and won the Grand international Championship will reveal just how little I value my own training that I would flaunt it like a blue ribbon at a fair.

I place alot of thoughts on my blog, but I've noticed that there are only 3 special people in my life that I'm willing to share those very important dreams that I hold in the depths of my heart unrevealed to the masses.

7:46 AM  
Blogger Mark said...

I'm new here, so please forgive me if I seem out of line.

As a martial arts (MA) student for 24 years, I really enjoy 'humbly' speaking with other martial artists about their styles, techniques, and history. There's a kinship among us.

As a shodan in two martial arts, I just consider myself a continual learner; nothing more. We should love to learn!

And as far as "bragging" is concerned, it just leads to foolishness.

Didn't Mr. Miyagi also say his black belt was a K-mart special and just to hold up his pants? Classic.

2:44 PM  
Blogger Stephen Irwin said...

I agree 100% about not revealing your "mind work" and goal setting. It is a precept of (for want of a better phrase) magical workings.

Although I discuss many things there's isn't a person alive today who has access to the written specific details of my goals.

Message to hackers: don't try it, they're not written on my PC!

10:26 AM  

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