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A Sensei's View

"Time of Reflection"

In 2005 Soke Stacy J. Huffman's Article "Time of Reflection" was published in the U.K. International Alliance of Martial Arts Schools Christmas Magazine.

"Time of Reflection"

The old Master grabs his sword and steps toward his young protégé of many years. With the Masters grin comes the reliance of the eyes. As the Master looks into the eyes of his young protégé; the Master no longer sees the young protégé's first instinct, which was to flee, but now the Master sees the young protégé focus with out thought or fear on the center of his body and prepares for the Masters draw.

The Master smiles, as he sees his own reflection in the eyes of his young protégé. 
           I have come to a  phase of reflection in my life. I have been in Martial Arts for most of my life. Since the age of 8 I have dedicated my life to the world of Martial Arts. Through out the years I have learned many lessons, some hard, some painful and some well earned. I have had the benefit of being a second generation Black Belt and seeing the reflection of the old ways. These ways have since been modified and changed through out the years. The Meaning of a Black Belt has since changed through out the years from the one of Stature too the Belt one wears around his waist in class. It saddens me to see the old ways slip away.

              What of the age of the Master? Is it judged on the matter of time one carries the rank of a Black Belt or is it judged on the number of students that one promotes to Black Belt? Perhaps, Its the knowledge and the understanding of the Art one teaches. Could it be how one lives his life with knowledge of his Art or is it title one chooses when all that can be learned is learned.

              Maybe it is burden of knowledge that has been passed down to Generation upon Generation that must be maintained in its purest and simplest form. The student has come to realizes that his path has not come to an end, but branched out into many paths and those paths have intertwined into the life he lives, thus his Art is lived and not just learned.

         I hold such a burden, It was not title earned or worked toward, but a gifted burden to be not only able to just understand but be to able to teach such traditions. A burden that requires seeds of knowledge to be sown in fertile fields of dedication. This is not an easy task when the fields of dedication are few and far between, but we try as we may in hopes that we will find such fields for it is my gifted burden.

Soke, Sensei
Stacy J. Huffman