Beating yourself up for strength (iron body)

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Individual
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Beating yourself up for strength (iron body)

Post by Individual » Tue Nov 23, 2010 4:05 am



Shaolin are so awesome.
The best things in life aren't things.

The Diamond Sutra

Individual
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Re: Beating yourself up for strength (iron body)

Post by Individual » Tue Nov 23, 2010 7:56 pm

Traditional Okinawan karate masters are awesome too:

The best things in life aren't things.

The Diamond Sutra

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Alex123
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Re: Beating yourself up for strength (iron body)

Post by Alex123 » Tue Nov 23, 2010 11:16 pm

They are still mortal and will die like all of us.

I wonder if that stuff that they do will affect their health later on in life... For what? A bullet to the head and the person is dead. What did they spend their life on?




If there is anyone who like to inflict pain on themselves, how about this?

Work extra hours and send me your money. :)
"Life is a struggle. Life will throw curveballs at you, it will humble you, it will attempt to break you down. And just when you think things are starting to look up, life will smack you back down with ruthless indifference..."

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BlackBird
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Re: Beating yourself up for strength (iron body)

Post by BlackBird » Tue Nov 23, 2010 11:25 pm

While I'm not certain martial arts are in line with the Buddha's teachings, I don't think they're a fruitless exercise Alex. I've met a few black belts and they're more often than not - Very nice, humble and disciplined people. I have thought that taking up a martial art might actually have some benefit on the cushion, or perhaps time on the cushion would have some benefit on the martial art, but there does seem to be a degree of cross over.
"For a disciple who has conviction in the Teacher's message & lives to penetrate it, what accords with the Dhamma is this:
'The Blessed One is the Teacher, I am a disciple. He is the one who knows, not I." - MN. 70 Kitagiri Sutta

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Alex123
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Re: Beating yourself up for strength (iron body)

Post by Alex123 » Tue Nov 23, 2010 11:30 pm

BlackBird wrote:While I'm not certain martial arts are in line with the Buddha's teachings, I don't think they're a fruitless exercise Alex. I've met a few black belts and they're more often than not - Very nice, humble and disciplined people. I have thought that taking up a martial art might actually have some benefit on the cushion, or perhaps time on the cushion would have some benefit on the martial art, but there does seem to be a degree of cross over.
Violence is not stopped by violence, and ultimately martial arts (I used to take them) are martial. I am afraid that mutilating your attacker would add too much negative kamma to oneself, and the better option would be to deflate the situation peacefully.

I've read that whenever a person carries a gun, the psychology changes, and that person is more likely to be aggressive.

The problem with Martial arts is similar. One is more likely to use force in a heated situation rather than try to escape or deflate it. The use of force could be on auto-pilot as well (as a conditioned reflex). Nothing to say about sizing up the person on the street and thinking about the best way to maim him if he attacked me. While they are smiling at you, they may be considering how they would fight you if things came that way.

Ultimately from Buddhist POV, as I understand it, good kamma is the highest worldly protection. And PariNibbana is permanent protection.


With metta,

Alex
"Life is a struggle. Life will throw curveballs at you, it will humble you, it will attempt to break you down. And just when you think things are starting to look up, life will smack you back down with ruthless indifference..."

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BlackBird
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Re: Beating yourself up for strength (iron body)

Post by BlackBird » Tue Nov 23, 2010 11:51 pm

A good friend of mine is a black belt in Karate, in his dojo they were taught to use their skills only as a last resort, with dialogue and fleeing the first two priorities. The very same guy took a beating once - He's a big guy too. In my opinion the guy who beat him up wouldn't have lasted more than 30 seconds had my friend used his karate, but he didn't feel his life was in danger so he did not fight back.

So feel free to generalize about the potential psychology of Martial artist A, but that is not necessarily applicable to everyone.
"For a disciple who has conviction in the Teacher's message & lives to penetrate it, what accords with the Dhamma is this:
'The Blessed One is the Teacher, I am a disciple. He is the one who knows, not I." - MN. 70 Kitagiri Sutta

Path Press - Ñāṇavīra Thera Dhamma Page - Ajahn Nyanamoli's Dhamma talks

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Re: Beating yourself up for strength (iron body)

Post by Paññāsikhara » Wed Nov 24, 2010 2:06 am

I agree, Blackbird, one requires quite some time of experience as a martial artist before understanding the psychological state involved.
Moreover, there are many different styles, and many different teachers. Some do teach a kind of aggressive approach, but others are very different and strictly emphasize the protection of others.
My recently moved Blog, containing some of my writings on the Buddha Dhamma, as well as a number of translations from classical Buddhist texts and modern authors, liturgy, etc.: Huifeng's Prajnacara Blog.

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Re: Beating yourself up for strength (iron body)

Post by Ben » Wed Nov 24, 2010 2:25 am

Hi Blackbird

Its been my exprience as well when I was a practitioner of Aikido many years ago. The whole ethos was of peace and harmony.

The following comment by Alex:
I've read that whenever a person carries a gun, the psychology changes, and that person is more likely to be aggressive.
Is plain wrong.
kind regards

Ben
“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
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in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
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Re: Beating yourself up for strength (iron body)

Post by Paññāsikhara » Wed Nov 24, 2010 3:40 am

I sometimes think that beginners of martial arts may become more aggressive, IF they are the type who is learning for ego purposes, to be the tough guy / gal, etc. Usually these people don't last long, fortunately. Once one is an experienced practitioner, with correct training, however, one can become acutely aware of the damage that one is able to inflict in a few seconds or less, and thus be extremely wary of misuse. A good practitioner will be able to exert enough technique to quell the situation, but no further. Beginners cannot, and tend to use all their power, which can be catastrophic. Moreover, long term practitioners are used to the situation, and thus seldom arise emotions of either fear or anger; again, beginners do not, and easily get angered. It's quite complex. Once a practitioner is a real master, then they'll have different mental states to this, too. Their mind-body connection is incredibly strong and powerful, and this leads to deep states of concentration even whilst active.
My recently moved Blog, containing some of my writings on the Buddha Dhamma, as well as a number of translations from classical Buddhist texts and modern authors, liturgy, etc.: Huifeng's Prajnacara Blog.

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Re: Beating yourself up for strength (iron body)

Post by Paññāsikhara » Wed Nov 24, 2010 3:41 am

Alex123 wrote: Ultimately from Buddhist POV, as I understand it, good kamma is the highest worldly protection. And PariNibbana is permanent protection.
:anjali:
My recently moved Blog, containing some of my writings on the Buddha Dhamma, as well as a number of translations from classical Buddhist texts and modern authors, liturgy, etc.: Huifeng's Prajnacara Blog.

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Dan74
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Re: Beating yourself up for strength (iron body)

Post by Dan74 » Wed Nov 24, 2010 3:48 am

I think that we do have a natural aggressive impulse (important for protection in case of conflict). Martial art if taught properly can actually bring this impulse more under control and develop respect and equanimity around it. My son (7) does karate. I have only seen him get less aggressive since he started. He was always amazingly careful and compassionate with insects and animals, but now this quality has also extended to his younger siblings :smile:
_/|\_

Individual
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Re: Beating yourself up for strength (iron body)

Post by Individual » Wed Nov 24, 2010 5:10 am

Alex123 wrote:
BlackBird wrote:While I'm not certain martial arts are in line with the Buddha's teachings, I don't think they're a fruitless exercise Alex. I've met a few black belts and they're more often than not - Very nice, humble and disciplined people. I have thought that taking up a martial art might actually have some benefit on the cushion, or perhaps time on the cushion would have some benefit on the martial art, but there does seem to be a degree of cross over.
Violence is not stopped by violence, and ultimately martial arts (I used to take them) are martial.
You ever heard of Aikido?

Also, in karate class last semester, we took an oath which includes things like not using drugs and avoiding violent conflicts whenever possible. :)
The best things in life aren't things.

The Diamond Sutra

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Alex123
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Re: Beating yourself up for strength (iron body)

Post by Alex123 » Thu Nov 25, 2010 2:00 am

Individual wrote: You ever heard of Aikido?
Yes. It seems to be less bad than what I practiced....

I used to take certain style where the instructions were to brutalize the opponent as fast as possible. We didn't even practice much blocking, just beating the crap out of the opponent before he can even attack... So maybe my views are jaded by that. But even karate which I used to take for far longer time than that combat style , is ultimately a martial art, "martial" art.


Some of the drawbacks are that I have fighting fantasies, these really intrude in my meditations. But then if not these, than other thoughts would come...
"Life is a struggle. Life will throw curveballs at you, it will humble you, it will attempt to break you down. And just when you think things are starting to look up, life will smack you back down with ruthless indifference..."

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Re: Beating yourself up for strength (iron body)

Post by Paññāsikhara » Thu Nov 25, 2010 2:16 am

Alex123 wrote:
Individual wrote: You ever heard of Aikido?
Yes. It seems to be less bad than what I practiced....

I used to take certain style where the instructions were to brutalize the opponent as fast as possible. We didn't even practice much blocking, just beating the crap out of the opponent before he can even attack... So maybe my views are jaded by that. But even karate which I used to take for far longer time than that combat style , is ultimately a martial art, "martial" art.


Some of the drawbacks are that I have fighting fantasies, these really intrude in my meditations. But then if not these, than other thoughts would come...
Yeah, perhaps your views have been "jaded" by that particular style. There is a huge range of attitudes across styles and teachers.
And remember that the term "martial art" is an English cover all. Although a generic name, I am not sure that all styles (in Asia) refer to themselves as 武術, the original term from which English "martial arts" comes.
My recently moved Blog, containing some of my writings on the Buddha Dhamma, as well as a number of translations from classical Buddhist texts and modern authors, liturgy, etc.: Huifeng's Prajnacara Blog.

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Guy
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Re: Beating yourself up for strength (iron body)

Post by Guy » Thu Nov 25, 2010 11:33 pm

If a situation can be resolved peacefully then that is the best first choice.

But if it really came down to a life and death situation, in all honesty, I would value my own life more so than the attackers and would try my best to stay alive. If martial arts helps me achieve this, then that is fine by me. I know that this is a worldly attitude, but I am not an Arahant. Martial arts has its uses, especially for putthujanas like me.

Also, someone trained in martial arts, if faced with a life/death situation, may be able to prevent the attacker from killing them while also avoiding seriously harming the attacker in the process. If this is achieved, and the attacker was intent on killing the martial artist, then surely the application of martial arts in that case is good kamma, especially if the mind of the martial artist is calm while defending themselves.

Anyway, whatever I say or whatever anyone else says about life/death situations is mostly hot air, especially from those of us who have never had to face such situations. The truth is we don't know how we will react until we are in that situation.

May we all avoid those situations entirely.
Four types of letting go:

1) Giving; expecting nothing back in return
2) Throwing things away
3) Contentment; wanting to be here, not wanting to be anywhere else
4) "Teflon Mind"; having a mind which doesn't accumulate things

- Ajahn Brahm

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