May 31, 2018, Israel
Young man, old man, the world as it is.
The young man sees the world as he wishes it to be. Life is full of wonder and endless possibilities. Revolution is in the air, the Times they are a changin'. The old man sits on his chair and says...nothing new under the sun. The world carries on as always, the world follows its own custom.
Things do change but do people really change? The Torah/Bible is still relevant because we are essentially the same. We face the same fears, the same challenges. We make the same mistakes. And the world carries on as it is.
We want to shape the world to meet our expectations. We want a perfect life. But we are taught to accept the world and flow with it and this is the true path to happiness and contentment. From a Jewish perspective and a Buddhist perspective the same message emerges; make your will match His will and all will be in harmony. Be one with the Divine and you will have peace in his life.
We want change and we must never be complacent and yet we must see things as they are, see the world as it is. Change can only happen when we accept things as they are. The basis of progress is the understanding of the current condition. As we learned from the Patriarch Jacob, in his heavenly dream he saw the ladder. Its top was in the heavens but its base was on the earth. If we wish to reach the heavens we must first be firmly planted on this earth. We must accept the reality of life. We must have our feet firmly planted on the ground, in the dirt, on the earth.
When we see the world as it is our expectations are in line with reality. We must judge by the ordinary not by the extraordinary. This understanding totally changes and challenges our approach to self defense.
We can view things as we want them to be or "as it is".
Our goal, as Bruce Lee said, is simply to simplify. Perhaps there are people who might be able to effectively use fancy joint lock techniques in real life stressful situations. Perhaps there are people who could perform martial stunts when the stress kicks in and a guy is pointing a gun at you or has a knife to your throat. Perhaps, perhaps not.
As the years roll on and I grow older I see the world as it is. I see the reality. We adapt, we adjust, we survive. But we must see the world as it is and work from that starting point.
Most people will not commit to long term training. As my friend Hal says most will not even bother watching a one hour Krav Maga training DVD, he tells me that is too much to expect.
New instructors often turn to me and wonder why they are having retention problems with their Krav Maga students. I just smile, that is the world, as it is.
So we design our style of Krav Maga self defense accordingly. If it takes too long to learn, it is out. If it is too complicated for the average person to learn in a reasonable amount of time, then it is out. If the information is difficult to retain, then it is useless.
We accept things as they are, and then we try and make a difference, a major difference, in our lives and our communities.