Respect

Martial Arts are a way of Life, no matter their origins, their focus, their techniques. At their core, they are – heroically and with grace – brimming with precious words of wisdom. . .ones which transcend all temporal confines.

That everything begins, and ends, with respect is not relegated to the Arts, but to Life, our relationships, our interactions, and ourselves.

To maintain respect in the face of adversity and calm alike is at the heart of being a warrior. . .and a solid human being.  Like integrity and honesty it is a key pillar of a fulfilled, happy, and healthy Life.

7 – 5 – 3 Code – For Life, Relationships, and Martial Arts

The 7-5-3 code is essentially an amalgamation of ancient principles, heavily influenced (and beginning with) the heroic, notoriously stringent way of life – or Bushido – of the Samurai.  The moral codes and principles by which these fierce warriors lived continues to guide many modern-day Martial Artists, whether taken as the 7-5-3, or in segments.  The values within, however, can apply to all people in all walks of life – they are scarcely relegated to the Arts and I daresay the world would be a better place would that we all followed suit. . . 

The 7-5-3 Code as a sum total purportedly originates with the Valente Brothers, three generations (same family) of Jiu-Jitsu practitioners who have learned from Grand Master Helio Gracie directly.  Though I am a practitioner of Gracie Jiu-Jitsu myself, I confess that I’d not heard much about the family prior.  That said, each of these points are ones which have been at the core of the five Martial Arts I have practiced (Hapkido, Taekwondo, Ninpo, Japanese Ju-Jutsu, Brazilian JiuJitsu (some Kumdo in addition)) in one way or another – they provide the framework and foundation not only for us as Martial Artists, but again as human beings.

7 Virtues Of a Warrior

  • Rectitude
  • Courage
  • Benevolence
  • Politeness / Propriety 
  • Honesty / Sincerity
  • Loyalty

These seven virtues relate to the way in which we interact with one another, on the mats, or off, whether with training partners, strangers, coworkers, husbands, wives… For the Samurai, there was an intense focus on how one conducts oneself, the values to which one would ferociously adhere, and the overarching respect and appreciate of life in all circumstances, with all people.  The maintenance of moral integrity was at the heart of the code, strengthened further by honest, and loyal conduct.  The Samurai were infamous for their fearlessness, and though known for their strength in battle, they asserted a level of compassion and kindness towards fellow man.

5 Keys To Health

  • Rational Nutrition
  • Sensible Exercise
  • Efficient Rest
  • Proper Hygiene
  • Positive Attitude

The five keys to health are incredibly important for everyone, particularly the modern-day Martial Arts practitioner or athlete. Without the proper fuel, our bodies will not function at their best.  Without rest, and a positive attitude irregardless of the circumstances, we cannot meet the challenges with our full capabilities.  Hygiene is an incredibly important point not only for our own health, but out of respect for our fellow training partners.  And sensible exercise requires that we push ourselves in a healthy way, knowing our limits, respecting our bodies, and backing off when necessary (often much harder said than achieved when dealing with athletic minds!)

3 States Of Mind

  • Zanshin – Awareness, Alertness, Preparedness
  • Mushin – No or Clear Mind
  • Fudoshin – Emotional Balance

The three states of mind are the principles by which to guide our personal, inner relationship.  These states not only preside over our physical bodies, but are at the core of the Arts which we practice – in some cases they feel like elusive, impossible concepts, but they are the endpoints to which we strive.  In fact one of them was at the heart of Hatsumi Sensei’s Ninpo theme this year!

Zanshin requires that we are always alert enough to accurately assess our surroundings, relying heavily on our muscle memories – this is where the hard training, and meticulous repetition comes into play. Mushin, a key theme among the Ninja for 2017, is, in essence, the ability to clear the mind of all techniques, to flow with the opponent’s movement, and to create.  Fudoshin is the emotional balance which we all endeavor to reach – with the turbulence of life, this balance fluctuates, tipping the scales to one end of the spectrum, and perhaps back to the other.  It takes hard work and self-reflection to achieve this balance, but the goal is ever-present.

Taking It Together

These 15 principles are – for all intents and purpose – ancient ones.  They are neither novel, nor particularly difficult to understand.  But to achieve these 15 singularly, or particularly in harmony, is a skill in and of itself – the pursuit of these virtues is a noble one, and gives a structure to Martial Arts practices, but also to life.  These are the foundations on which we can build our relationships with ourselves and others, on which we can build our strength of body and mind, and the principles that govern our mental, spiritual, and emotional well-being.  

The Seven Virtues Of Bushido

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Ebates – More Money For You!

So I’m not sure if any of you have heard of Ebates, but it’s tremendous…and I want to share the wealth!

 

You get cash back for purchases online, and sometimes you get extra goodies – I got a random gift card to Target (super useful, since I just moved!) It wasn’t expected and I actually e-mailed to company to ask what it was.  “It’s your $10 card for Target for signing up with us,” said customer service.

Um…OKAY! ❤

I just bought a desk and got about $13 back just for that alone.  It sounds like a small amount, but it adds up…and then you get a “check” – mine goes to PayPal directly, so I can easily transfer it to my bank.  I use it a lot on eBay, because I love to shop there.  If you are going to spend cash, how nice is it to make some back?!

Definitely look into it if you haven’t, because you will find that you can save even when you can’t find a code to use for checkout…basically saving you some money even though you didn’t have a discount or coupon.

You can use it over 1,800 stores – Sephora, Amazon, Etsy…pet stores, baby stores, office supplies… 

 

And you can search by product, if you prefer…

It also has a list of coupons you can use – just click and go to the site, and when you check out, the cash back goes to your account. EASY AS THAT!

Not kidding… It’s a total win, and I am super happy I heard about it and signed up.  

Rare M.A.C. Code

It is incredibly rare that M.A.C. offers any kind of discount.  Like, ever.  Thanks to Nouveau Cheap for this post, and to @lipstick_lace-bubblegum and @lisptickjunkieforever for sharing with her!

@lipstick_lace_bubblegum for Nouveau Cheap

@lipstick_lace_bubblegum for Nouveau Cheap

I was actually NOT aware that M.A.C. had redone their site – while I do subscribe to newsletters, I feel like I rarely get them.  So, I was happy to see this post all together! 🙂

Additionally, per Nouveau Cheap (again, many thanks for sharing all this!):

Thank you to ALL THREE of you!  Nouveau Cheap, @lipstickjunkieforever, AND @lipstick_lace_bubblegum.  So appreciate you all sharing this rare code!

Thank you to ALL THREE of you! Nouveau Cheap, @lipstickjunkieforever, AND @lipstick_lace_bubblegum. So appreciate you all sharing this rare code!

 

Deadly Is The Female

Some sites are running sales every two minutes…not so with Deadly Is The Female!  They rarely send out discounts, so I’m sharing’ the love!

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DITF is based in Somerset, in the UK (sadly, I live in the USA!)  Established in 2008, this adorable brand specializes in “vintage Hollywood style with a hint of Femme Fatale.”  Fashions take a nod from the “fun, femininity, and glamour” of the1940s and ’50s, and encourages ladies to indulge in the “ritual” of getting dressed up.  And, ohhh, the dresses!  They’re wonderfully retro pinup! ❤

I’m a huge fan of Stop Staring! clothing, so anything pencil-like, or wiggle-type, I’m in! 

The shop carries apparel, footwear, accessories, cosmetics…and they categorize the dresses by type, and by decade (lovely! 🙂 )and also allow for color filtering (yay for ease of use!)

So DO take a peek while they have 20% going on!  You might end up with more than you anticipated this weekend but a girl deserves to have a little fun!