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Not Fighting

As I grow older (and hopefully wiser), my attitude about Karate is more and more about "not fighting." I probably am the least likely person to get into a fight. I would run first or try to talk my way out of the situation. I would not fight over a material possession -- short of someone trying to break into my house and threaten my family. I would not fight over an insult, particularly about Karate or manhood or any such thing. I certainly would not fight about an insult against me, my Sensei or my style of Karate. Why would I?

I often tell my students that if someone insults you, why should believe that person? If that person is an idiot, would you believe an idiot? If you do not believe the idiot, then why would you take his insult seriously?

What does it matter if an idiot calls you an idiot? Perhaps that is just a double negative.

I also tell my students that you should be careful when someone praises you. How do you know that the person knows what he is talking about? He might be wrong. If you are good at something then you are good at it -- whether someone praises you or not.

If you are very confident and comfortable with yourself, you will not be upset by insults or swayed by praise.

Now, I also tell my students that although I am the least likely person to "fight," I would do everything imaginable to protect my family and loved ones. Then there is no holding back, and I would be a terrible person indeed. Then the proverbial can is opened. But of course, that is not fighting, that is self defense. When self defense becomes the last resort, then that's that!

But otherwise, fighting is not my thing.


Charles C. Goodin