The First Dragon Rider has an interesting post that compares martial arts and their teachers to Jedi Council members from the Star Wars saga. He also shares two photos that depict Jedi Masters Ip Man and Morihei Ueshiba with their respective Padawans.
This made me recall this post from 2007. In it I compare martial arts to some broad themes you’ll find in the world’s great religions.
Martial arts have…
- Some sort of founder that in some instance is thought to possess “secret techniques” like a “death touch” or mystical mastery of almost-magical energies (i.e., ki)
- Sacred texts that reveal the one true way to their art
- Masters who are skilled at the founder’s techniques and teachings
- Some students who adhere to said teachings and texts, often without question
- Liberal, moderate, and conservative approaches to the teachings
In the post I paraphrase a quote from a scholar of religion. That paraphrase is worth sharing again:
Paraphrasing McGrath, I believe that martial artists should consider this:
But it does set before us the challenge that confronts martial artists in every age: What is the heart of our art, and how can it be appropriately expressed in the context of the time in which we find ourselves living?
Post Update: Cook Ding shares a post from his blog about martial arts and spirituality. Here’s a wonderful quote from the post that gets at the best parts of religion, spirituality, and the martial arts!
“Something that could be a positive force that changes our entire lives by not just changing the way we think about things, but making us think about things we normally wouldn’t have.”