Always loved these words, and – thankfully – always believed them.
There are a thousand reasons why this idea should be prized. . .
Words have power and sometimes it is better to remain silent, lest ignorance, impatience, anger, or inability to understand cause more harm than good.
Sounds easy. . .but. . .it isn’t. It’s a life-long pursuit to manage the gift of language we’ve been given. Sometimes nothing feels better than sharing, commenting, responding, speaking. . . But a lot of times silence is a wiser, if not kinder, response.
While I am a long way from mastering the skill, it’s a good reminder that there’s a time and a place to use the gift of speech. Before engaging, thinking is often a great idea.
There are times in Life when it seems all light extinguishes, leaving blackness, fear, and despair.
And yet. . .
In the midst of it. . .if we look deep without our inner recesses, we will find the inextinguishable flame we’ve carried all along.
Remember what you have accomplished. Remember the demons you’ve conquered, the tears and blood you’ve shed. For you are a warrior, stronger than anyone else can ever know. You are a survivor, you are beautiful, and you are a beacon of light in spite of all.
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.
It’s easy to judge and to be harsh – I catch myself all the time. Without snap judgements, we argue, the species might not be where it is today. Right…?
The deeper reality is that Life is hard. The more positive we can be, and the more we can bring light into our own lives, and to those around us, the better the ride for us all. There are so many wounded souls, evil in their actions, to whom I wished I could have stressed this point (maybe with a fist!) over my lifetime. . . But along the way I realized it takes oneself to learn, to know the difference, and to make the change – wishing does nothing.
To, however, act in such a way ourselves is to lead by example. Any day could be the one that our upstanding or positive attitude alters the destiny of another.
A single word or gesture is capable of changing a Life – we never know the wars raging around us, nor do others know the ones we face ourselves daily. To inspire a smile can create shifts so great that – without even realizing – you shed light on a once darkened path for a once hopeless soul. Life-giving indeed. . .
Shine you light, for you have much to give, and in so doing brighten the world.
I’m still working on this one, and I am certain I’ll be at it for a while. But deep down, I fully believe in this concept, and I am getting better about stopping myself when my thoughts *try* to sabotage my mind, emotions, and body. Like I said...*working on.*
The key is consistency – the efforts we make to apply it to ourselves, every…single…day, regardless of what’s going on around us. In my mind it isn’t necessarily a lofty goal, so much as a slow-and-setady one. It also happens to be an incredibly noble one and – should we truly desire peace in our lives – wholly achievable.