Essays on becoming a black belt

I spent several months working on this paper, talking to instructors with far more experience than me in this particular topic, ordering books, doing research on the Internet, etc.

What a Black Belt Means to Me - Zen Martial Arts Center

I even play-tested one of the ideas I had about the psychology of knife defense on my blog, gaining insight on different perspectives on a very subjective topic. It ended up being over 20, words, but I was happy with how it turned out. Ultimately, the purpose of writing essays, theses, etc, as a part of Dan examinations is not the writing itself, but the thought that goes behind them.

When one writes these papers, they can be an intimate exercise in self-examination or an extensive outreach that pushes the boundaries of what you think you know about the martial arts.

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Although I have a distinct advantage in that I enjoy writing, I think everyone can benefit from the thought exercise that goes into writing, whether the person is a writer or not. Are essays a requirement for black belt gradings in your style? If so, what types of essay do people write?


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If not, what do you think of the concept? Please share your thoughts in the comments. Tags: Black Belt Tests. First of all: happy new year, best wishes for To me martial arts, like Zen meditation, is about cultivating the unconscious mind mushin no shin and the lessening of the ego annata , not rational thinking or booksmarts which are more useful in other endavours.

In the case of the swordsman, it means death.

Tae Kwon Do - First Degree Black Belt Essay

He just stands there with his sword which, forgetful of all technique, is ready only to follow the dictates of the subconscious. The man has effaced himself as the wielder of the sword. You as a teacher might enjoy reading it feedback on your work so to speak while for them it might not be what they signed up for and they might even resent you for it. Reading the Book of 5 Rings will not make you proficient at swordmanship even if you know it by heart and can produce the most intelligent sounding commentaries : only picking up a bokken and practicing endlessly untill you get good.

Hi Zara. Happy New Year to you too! As for the essays, I think there is merit either way.

black belt essay

In our style, as you advance, part of your training is to help other people in their training, whether this is by leading warm-ups, helping people make minor corrections, or teaching classes formally. Does it make you closer to Mushin?

Elise Knowles

No, though reflecting on what you may have gained from your training from a mental perspective may at least give you a sense of appreciation for it. It can, however, help you be a better teacher by helping you to connect with the human experience that is martial arts training. These essays are fairly common in traditional martial arts.


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I love watching the kids. As an student, I had to prepare myself as well. I wanted to prepare the kids, but had to prepare myself too. TD: Our average is 3. EC: Is there anything that you have learned in the martial arts that will help you in management?


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They never learned how to listen and show respect for other people so that you yourself gain respect. TD: It takes a village. We have all these great instructors. EC: So what belt did you test for? TD: It was my 4th degree or dan. EC: When did you start training? TD: I started training in EC: You are so young.