These are the Three L’s of Karate
One of my favorite things to do in my childhood was to do martial arts. I did it for 17 Years of my life and have loved it so much! Associated with Karate there are these great learning events called belt tests. Tests that determine whether or not you will advance to the next rank of learning. During this test there is a presentation and discussion at the end talking about the Three L’s of Karate.
These L’s represent what it means to understand what the Martial Art Culture really is. They are Loyalty, Longevity, and Love. These of course to children mean very little other than, “I’m getting a new belt!” Having a little bit more knowledge about life and understanding as to what it means to be happy those three L’s have a much more significant meaning than before.
With an almost obvious significance Loyalty would be quite easy for any adult to understand why it is important. Loyalty is the foundation upon which trust is built upon. That trust is what makes every single relationship able to be grown. There is so much to just this one topic that more explanation is required than simply just knowing the word “Loyalty”.
We need to understand the work that goes into loyalty. Loyalty isn’t just something that you all of a sudden achieve or retain by simply doing nothing. First and foremost, you have to be willing to make sacrifices in your own life. Real and Personal Sacrifices for somebody else that proves to not only them, but to yourself that you really are committed to prioritize this person above other things in your life.
Once you have achieved this amount of love and commitment for that person, you then have to retain it. It simply isn’t enough to be there for a person once or twice. To show a true amount of Loyalty you will sacrifice many personal priorities simply to make sure the well being and happiness of the other individual is in the right place. It is something that is shown to others and that is also earned by respect and hard work for the other person’s sake.
Physical, Mental, and Emotional. You need longevity in each one in order to have success and a truly healthy life. In Martial Arts of course the most notable is Physical Longevity. You have to be willing to work your body in a way that allows it to keep the necessary amount of strength up. Working out is a great way to keep your heart moving and to ensure that the necessary flow of your blood delivers nutrients to all parts of the body even under hard circumstances like sickness.
Another huge part of our physical longevity are the things that we put into our body. There are so many bad and good substances for our body. Many substances that increase our health and our ability to increase our mechanical ability and many others that decrease our ability and create dependencies. For this particular one, you have to take a long look at everything that you put into your body and see what you could improve.
Mental Longevity covers many things like our ability to endure trials, capacity of understanding concepts, the ability to learn new things. This one is a little harder to put a metric on simply because everyone’s mental capacities are different. Not only are they different but there is no true way to compare two different intellectual beings accurately against each other simply because there were so many different types of intellect. In all reality though this is our ability to endure learning curves.
Our ability to endure learning curves will only increase the more and more we learn. One of my favorites is the ability to learn another language. Even though the vernacular and phraseology of each language is different our brain makes connections between the connotative meanings of each word. In turn these new learning neural pathways gives us the ability to learn other things easier. We may think of a new way to solve a problem in Math, or understand a different concept in chemistry. There is no true direct link that learning a new language helps you learn other subjects easier, only that it allows your brain to think in different ways than it did before.
Emotional Longevity is something that hardly anyone masters. Emotional Longevity to me is when a person has such an understanding of themselves that they are able to forego the need of other peoples opinions of what would make them happy. I do not believe I know a single person who has this down perfectly, but I do know of people who understand themselves better than others. Throughout every single stage of life there are moments that help us define who we are. These moments stack up until we start to see the picture of our lives and see what makes us happy and what makes us stand apart from others.
This takes time and experience. More than anything though, it takes consistent effort to try new things and to understand new ideas and concepts. Without the continuous intake of the New we pass up our opportunities to grow and to change into the people that would make this world a better place. As selfish as it may sound, we need to spend time on ourselves and understanding our needs and desires.
The result of our emotional longevity will show when we understand ourselves and through that we understand others and what they are going through. We end up having empathy for other people and feel a little bit more about what they might be going through. On top of this we will also will stop feeling offended or hurt by others seeing as the need of there opinion no longer matters if you don’t want it to. You learn to not emotionally depend upon others, but do learn to enjoy the emotional moments that you share with others.
Such a broad term that can mean so many different things. The Love of Learning, the Love of Family, the Love of Friends and the Love of Doing. All of these things are such huge topics of discussion that honestly there is only one way for me to put it all.
Be Passionate about your Life.
You only have one life. There is no way around Death. You will Die. Not for a second, however does that mean that you can’t make a difference. Make something of your life. You have the ability to do it. You have the HUGE opportunity of being a human being! Nothing could be better than that. We all have the ability to learn, to do, to change, to love, to hate, to become something different than what we were before. In other words you need to be your own Passion. If I could just leave with a few words it would be these.
Your Passion Defines Your Potential
I would love to hear your thoughts and comments! Give me your two cents! A Quick Shout out to My instructors Jade, Te and Mr. Lawrence for always teaching me how to become a better person as well as a better Martial Artist!
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