Seeking Truth within the Martial Arts

The study of Martial Arts as I think about it, is a study of truth.  Not capital T truth – maybe not even the most important type of truth, but definitely a truth. The way the body moves in order to attack or defend will either work, or it won’t.  For every action, there is a response that gets to the desired outcome, and many responses that do not. You see what I’m saying?  Okay, cool.  So, with this in mind – check this out.  I believe there are 3 kinds of Masters in the Martial Arts in regards to truth and they are:

  1. Those who claim to know the true art
  2. Those who seek to know the true art
  3. Those who don’t believe that there is (or have no interest in defining) a true art.

I made a little Prezi on the topic:

different opinions on the true art of martial arts

Different opinions on truth within the martial arts

Let’s go over these different perspectives a little bit, because I think there is some value in defining ourselves and how we perceive our specific Martial Art as instructors…

The ‘Truth Claimer’ may sound like:

– “Come and train with me to experience the true art.”
– “The only truths found in other arts are truths stolen form my art.”
– “My style / art is the truth.”

The ‘Truth Seeker’ may sound like:

– “I can learn from anyone – even a while belt.”
– “The only truths found in any art (including mine) are true despite which art they come from.”
– “If any other art can get me closer to the true art, I’m open to exploring it.”

The ‘True Art Denier’ may sound like:

– “I am satisfied within my art, and you can stay within your art. They are apples & oranges.”
– “Your art is true for you and my art is true for me.”

I am definitely a Truth Seeker.  As Master Fariborz would say, I am “playing to win”. I want to get the most out of my training and there is no value for me in ignoring cool concepts and moves found in other styles.  To me, an art or style is just like someone’s personality.  There are introverted leaders, just as there are extroverted leaders.

That said, I should also say that Hapkido is the only true art and everything else is just wannabe Hapkido.  🙂

What do you think about truth in regards to Martial Arts?  Am I way off here or do you agree?  Let me know in the comments…