My personal "Interpretive" Lens!
"One thing has always been true: That book ... or ... that person who can give me an idea or a new slant on an old idea is my friend." - Louis L'Amour
"Read not to contradict and confute; nor to believe and take for granted; nor to find talk and discourse; but to weigh and consider..." - Francis Bacon
"What is true today may be reevaluated as false not long after. Judgements are frequently based upon a set of "temporary" circumstances surrounding them. Conflicting ideologies can exist simultaneously. Antagonistic dualities are complementary aspects of a unified whole: are seen as mutually dependent mirror images of each other." - Nahum Stiskin
Warning, Caveat and Note: The postings on this blog are my interpretation of readings, studies and experiences therefore errors and omissions are mine and mine alone. The content surrounding the extracts of books, see bibliography on this blog site, are also mine and mine alone therefore errors and omissions are also mine and mine alone and therefore why I highly recommended one read, study, research and fact find the material for clarity. My effort here is self-clarity toward a fuller understanding of the subject matter. See the bibliography for information on the books.
Note: I will endevor to provide a bibliography and italicize any direct quotes from the materials I use for this blog. If there are mistakes, errors, and/or omissions, I take full responsibility for them as they are mine and mine alone. If you find any mistakes, errors, and/or omissions please comment and let me know along with the correct information and/or sources.
A person's heart is the same as Heaven and Earth while the blood circulating is similar to the Sun and Moon yet the manner of drinking and spitting is either soft or hard while a person's unbalance is the same as a weight and the body should be able to change direction at any time as the time to strike is when the opportunity presents itself and both the eyes must see all sides as the ears must listen in all directions while the mind must grasp all the tactual data not seen on all sides and not heard in any direction.
A person’s heart is the same as Heaven and Earth while circulatory system is similar to the cycles of the moon and sun yet the breathing methods are either hard or soft while one’s posture should allow one to advance, retreat, engage, and disengage as the body should be able to act in accordance with time and change so that one must enter a state of emptiness (mushin/zanshin) allowing the eyes must see all sides and the ears should listen in all directions while the mind must grasp all the tactual data not seen on all sides and not heard in any direction. - My rendition per translation from Andy Sloane Sensei.
Way of Life
A way of life is what the individual lives and they should rely upon themselves to achieve a better way of life. Projecting onto others or other endeavors such as the practice of karate, martial art, flower arranging, tea ceremony, etc. is not healthy nor is it true. Like many things in the practice of karate/karate-do/karate-sho this is misleading semantics and literally cannot be true.
No activity such as this can or does lead to a better way of life. This is tantamount to saying to yourself that there is no way in the world you could possibly achieve a better life with out either a person, persons, organizations, society, etc. or some external activity providing it. It cannot be done, it is not possible, it takes the free will and open minded individual to bring about change within themselves.
No one else and no other outside source can give you a better way of life. This is an internal thing! If you achieve a better way of living then you and you alone changed yourself, that is it, just you. Your mom didn't do it nor your dad and neither did anyone else in your life. They may have provided some insight but in the end it is still you and you alone that decides to change or to become a better person leading a good life, a better life, a way of life.
When someone says they practice karate/karate-do/karate-sho as a way of life actually means they use the practice to help validate the thoughts and idea's you gather yourself so you can make a better decision as to what it is you and you alone wish to incorporate into yourself to live better, to be a better person and to lead a better life. No one can dictate to you what that is or how to achieve it. They can mentor you, they can provide information to evaluate and either assimilate or discard, they can only do this and only you can make the decision to change.
Karat-do is a "WAY" to open the mind and teach us there are no limits to what we can achieve and that is why they say it can "help us" to achieve greater self confidence, etc. but understand that it cannot "GIVE US" self confidence, only you can decide if you can or cannot increase it.
Education, experiences, interactions with others in society; those things you "see," "hear," "feel," "touch," "taste," etc. with the unique gift nature provided to assess, evaluate, decide, assimilate or discard to create our OWN life and way of living it. Everything else including the practice of karate are simply the tools you, you alone, decide to use to achieve your goal of a better way of life.
Education: the studies you do such as reading and understanding the various classics that are possible ways to live you can incorporate, if you choose. This includes both the physical and esoteric practice of karate, etc. All are a part of educating yourself.
Experiences: those we have living life, associating with others and being attentive/observant, that which we learn by "doing" such things as karate, etc. to include your travels to other places, people, customs, and courtesies and so on.
Interactions: those you experience with your parents, brothers and sisters, school mates, teachers at school, work, vacation spots, social groups, other places and activities where you are interacting with others which includes the tribe/group dynamics of karate practice/training.
All those external things that you are able to bring into yourself through sight, sound, touch, feelings, etc. are contributors to your decision to assimilate or discard to achieve better ways of living life.
So, in lieu of saying, "I practice karate as a way of life," you might say, "I use karate to achieve a way of life."