French philosopher, Jules de Gaultier once wrote : IMAGINATION IS THE ONE WEAPON IN THE WAR AGAINST REALITY. Why would anyone want to change reality… is it because it is too dreary… too unrealistic at times? Reality is after all, simply a state of being when a group of people agree upon their perception of what is real. Simply in other words, if say… Putin, Bush and a third of the world’s leaders meet up in Geneva or wherever they hang out to spend tons of the taxpayers’ money, and agree that Never Never Land is to be found two miles south of the coast of Florida, then it must be real???!!!!!
The same state of reality exists in the martial arts community. Take one example, a black belt I know has recently ‘migrated’ to another style or ‘ryu’ due to ‘conflict of interest’. He is hell bent on finding ‘THE TRUE PATH’. On his journey to find this path, he tramples on some people, spits on others and generally belittles everyone else who does not see things his way, for he is after all, the guardian of the ‘TRUE PATH’. For is he not right in his quest for the ultimate truth. As he is a student of a japanese martial arts system, so he goes forth boldly to the ‘homeland’ to further his knowledge in his art. After a month of intensive training he comes home with a certificate. But alas, it is not the coveted black belt certificate that he brings home but an Ikkyu (1st Kyu, brown belt). Being a master orator and spin-master, he continues to advertise himself as a black belt, albeit from a previous organization that he nows spits on. Not once did in his master oration does he mention that the masters that be in the land of the rising sun, view him, despite his many long years of training and teaching experience, only worthy of a brown belt. There is nothing unhonourable in that. It is just that he conveniently forgets to mention that fact in his current martial art style. Was he lying??? Of course he wasn’t, he wasn’t claiming anything that he wasn’t. He justs never tells the truth. So…. what level of reality does he, or any other martial artists operate on then? Or is he simple in denial?
We all hype up a bit in advertising. But it is a sad thing to see someone buy into their own hype. It is one thing to have others praise you, but to continually do it yourself???? Oh well… there is a Malaysia saying “Masuk bakul angkat sendiri” which literally means to sing one’s own praise.