Why do some stay?

Many more leave than stay. That’s a given. The hard work and seemingly small reward would be daunting to even more if they knew how truly tough the training is. A comment made today at my student’s jujitsu class was”we train hard so we can deal successfully with the stresses, trials and tribulations of life. I disagree. But why do some stay?

I train to come into harmony with nature so I do not have to struggle so much, to allow nature to show me the way, to flow with, not against. My senior student read an article which stated that some, not all back pain comes about as a direct result of exterior problems not mentally resolved. That author may be on to something. Many people carry around the weight of the world. In fact a question asked in one book I read was this: “Do you see yourself living in a fundamentally hostile universe, or a friendly universe?” The answer pretty much dictates how you live your life and what you perceive yourself to be in conflict with. That’s just about fighting, my friend. My life is so much more than that. Is yours? But why do some stay?

I rarely catch colds. I’ve only had the flu once in my life. And I attribute this to not only my lifestyle but my thought processes. A large part of that is controlling my emotions. An angry man can usually be controlled much easier than a calm one. An angry man is easily taken advantage of. Whenever I find myself getting angry I immediately go inward and question. Then consider another point of view, the other person’s perspective. Anger dissolves. I move on.

With martial arts training it gets easier. An added plus is the older I get the easier it gets. Then there is “Teaching” while training which gets me to that doorway in a much safer environment. I teach myself as much as I teach my students. In fact, teaching students is really learning to reinforce my these ideas in own mind. So this whole thing is in fact very, very selfish. It’s all about me. But selfishness can be a good thing, right? But why do some stay?

Some stay because they like the challenge and begin to sense the possibilities. Some stay because they get that taste of inspiration. Some stay because they feel a sympathetic vibration from the teacher, other students or from dojo itself. They realize that this may be their last best opportunity to truly test themselves in a danger filled physical environment, especially if they encounter the sword.

Why do you stay?

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11 thoughts on “Why do some stay?”

  1. It’s very important to me to develop my character in a positive way. Before I joined the dojo, I had struggled with a great deal of anger, cynicism and pain. I was very confused because I was taught to love others unconditionally and yet I was only taken advantage of. I never really had a role model, or someone to look up to. It was like that for a long time. When I joined the dojo, I found that there were many people there who had spent much more time on the subject of how to control yourself and get the most out of yourself and live life free from the destructive forces of the body and mind. Not only do I learn self-defense (which is very important to me) but much, much more importantly I am learning lessons about proper conduct, discipline, and a unique way of thinking that I have never been exposed to anywhere else. This is why I keep coming back.

  2. I stay because in the 5 or so years I’ve been training, I’ve felt more-and-more exactly what you’ve mentioned above – that I am becoming more-and-more in harmony with nature. It is a good feeling to just open one’s eyes and understand. Or at least to begin to be able to.

  3. I absolutley stay because of my teacher. Aikido can be “learned” on the internet but wisdom only exists in a very special place in Wilmington.

    Thank you Sensei.

  4. So true…My own reasons for staying for now are pretty simple: changing my character. I have achieved pretty high rank in different martial art, other than Aikido, so this new goal changed my perception of everything. I am thankful to my classmates for all the help, respect and support they provide while I am trying to achieve a new goal.

  5. I stay because I like the person I have become by virtue of practicing Aikido with the people in my Dojo. It starts from the top with our Sensei being an excellent role model and one who is able to inspire each of us to be a better person than who we already are. I feel a strong sense of fellowship in the Dojo due to the camaraderie that exists among those of us who practice together. Coming to the dojo and practicing helps me forget my worries, reinforces the principle of “being in the moment” and reenergizes me. I feel privileged to be part of this group.

  6. I stay because the practicing of Aikido helps improve my mindset to that stronger belief, self-confidence, discipline, and a willingness to push forward despite the bearers.

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