One Last Word About Self-Defense

“Our life is shaped by our mind; we become what we think.”

Those who repeatedly run into personal confrontations may want to consider examining their attitudes and their behavior in the presence of others. - To those seeking a quick fix to their self-defense needs, beware, there are no instant solutions. Learning effective self-defense takes a lot of dedicated training, under sweat, and maybe sometimes under pain. It requires understanding oneself and confronting one’s fears (fear: that which prevents us from being our true better self). Mastering one's ego, acquiring humility and "perfection of character" remain our foremost training goals.

We need to take responsibility for what happens to us - what comes around, usually first goes around. Keep your perspective - never mistrust someone, but respect them for the mischief they can cause. Most people lack the aggressive behavior that comes natural to people who are a potential threat to others. Unfortunately, if our anger overcomes our fear and does break loose from the restraints of socially accepted behavior, we may end up doing more harm to others (or to ourselves) than necessary. Given the potential liabilities that arise from such actions, determining what is a properly measured act of self-defense remains a significant challenge. Worse so conventional weapons, such as guns, knives or chemical repellents, in the hands of the poorly trained individual can become an even greater liability.

On a practical level nobody can teach us self-defense! We can only be taught skills needed to practice and develop our own self-defense. You, the practitioner, are responsible for preparing yourself for self-defense by combining, refining and applying what you have been taught. This includes developing not only on one’s physical skills, strength and agility - but more so one’s mind: tranquility, adaptability, and open-mindedness, and most of all one’s attitude. Our fears probably make us the most vulnerable, allowing us to be intimidated into unnecessary confrontations.

Self-defense training needs to carefully develop responses suited for any situation, guided by a self-propagated inner moral self-discipline. But there is much more to self-defense than the ability to fight. Efficient self-defense may also be seen as the ability to develop the appropriate tools for survival in any adverse or threatening situations, including the fine art of persuasion, foresight, alertness and assertiveness to avoid trouble before it arrives. It also includes the wisdom to let go of pride and back off. It is up to us to decide what is the most appropriate response.

An interesting way of looking at self-defense can be found in an essay by Professor Burt Aspinall.

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