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When one begins to talk about practicality, application and usefulness in the world of the martial arts we enter onto a slippery slope. People start talking about "street fights" and "what REALLY happens in a fight". We Begin to theorize about reality, instead of living and training in it.
Training in the martial arts is not fighting. No matter how much we want it to be, no matter how much we pretend or don't pretend it simply isn't fighting. You can not do or experience the things you would in a life or death struggle in a Dojo. It's not possible, for many reasons.
First, a Dojo is a controlled atmosphere. No one is going to have buddies waiting outside the door, to help them beat up another student. A car isn't going to drive through the school. People are not going to begin shooting at you in the middle of class. Most everyone knows each other and are working together, not plotting to harm one another.
Second, the Dojo has a teacher/coach who sets up the scenarios, decides when things have gone on to long, or are not appropriate. The teacher dictates what is safe, good practice and the direction he wants the school to go in. If it were a sporting event he'd be the referee, there are no referee's in life or death struggles.
Third, there is a lack of intent to truly do harm to one another. Not that there aren't occasional Dojo Scrabbles. Maybe a few people don't really like each other, but there is no real intent to do life threa
Martial arts and spirituality. What does that even mean? This is a question almost all of us ask. But few of us ever get any real answers. Some say it's mixing religions such as Christianity or Islam with martial arts. Some think it's dressing up in flowing clothes, spouting koans, and seeming esoteric. Some say it's simply, "a bunch of crap".
However I believe It isn't any of these things.
To understand the relationship between Martial arts and spiritually, you must first understand what each of them are on their own. Most of us pretty much understand, or at least have a clear concept of what the martial arts are. I'll define it here as the study of physical conflict. But there are lots of reasonable definitions. Most of us have spent enough time with the martial arts, that we have a pretty clear definition, at least for ourselves. It's spirituality that many of us have a hard time with.
To many, spirituality is simply going to church and reading the bible. While these things are spiritual things, they are part of a religion, and not the spirituality itself. A religion is a school of spirituality. The main goal of these schools is to put people in touch with their spirituality. The practices of a religion (prayer, bible reading, church services, worship etc.) are designed to put you in touch with your spirituality, but they are not the spirituality itself. By adding the practices of your religion to your martial arts, you are not wo