August 14, 2015
All of life basically is about finding a path. We need to find our way in the dark. We are born into this world without consent. We do not choose the time or place of our birth. We do not choose the religion we are born into, the family, the clan, nothing...
All men are created equal but none are born equal. Were you born as heir to the Czar or as a peasant with no hope? Where you born with the natural talents and gifts of a Mozart or are you one of the countless ordinary people that fill the earth?
The circumstances of our birth and early life are beyond our control. But eventually we must find our path in life. Like a trickle of water running down a rocky hill we must find that little opening, that little space that says..Yes, you can squeeze though here. Here you find your opening, here you find your path in life. That is how you start to make your way in life, to make a difference, for yourself and for others. You must believe that you deserve a life.
I wrote of my family on the Lower East Side, New York, USA at the early part of the century, (1908). I recall when visiting the museum of the Lower East Side seeing in one of the rooms a pair of boxing gloves and a pair of light weights. The tour guide explained that the young Jewish man who owned these was dreaming of becoming a boxer. Why a boxer? What kind of a profession is that for a man born to a family of rabbis? Because for that young man boxing was seen as a way out of the ghetto, out of the slums, out of the terrible poverty in which these poor immigrants lived. He was seeking his path, his way out.
Some turned to crime, others became peddlers and eventually became owners of huge chains of food stores and clothing stores (and now other people burn and trash these places and say, "why don't we own such stores", Why? because you are a goddamn lazy good-for-nothing living off of other peoples work, that's why.)
So my family worked all day, eat little and went to the "School for New Americans" at night to learn English. The next generation all became professionals. No belly aching, only hard work, hard decent work.
Jews saved up and rented sewing machines, they worked round the clock, slowly buying their own machine, and slowly moving up the ladder of success. My grandfather Moe Katz sold materiel, my grandmother Mina Katz made dresses. They worked hard. They found their path among the rocks. The trickle of water came through.
Your path out might be a very narrow one but you must find it, just wide enough for the trickle of water, and then you expand and make it a highway.
With Krav Maga it is the same. No one promised you an easy life and you may face danger your entire life. So we look for the shortest possible solution. We look for the path to the target, the path to defend ourselves.
With a strike to the face we use a very simple natural and intuitive block. We drive forward and using the most narrow of paths we strike at the vulnerable points of the bastard who tried to hurt us. We have no time to waste.
This is not a sport. For the young man trying to fight his way out of the ghetto boxing was not a sport but a ticket out! At the time there were many Jewish boxers, not for the sport but for the ticket out. This was a painful way out but nonetheless an honorable way out.
IKI Krav Maga is not designed for comfortable people. We do not have fancy elaborate techniques, we do not use artistic expression, we do not have time to play around, we are just looking for a way out of trouble. We need a short and direct path, simple.
We are seeking our path to freedom.
Moshe teaching in Costa Rica with Carl.