Sparring with the Gods

( some ramblings thoughts for the day )

 

There are many heads to the monstrous Hydra that is the modern world that we live in. When I look around me at the people who supposedly make up the greater portion of 'my generation', I see an overwhelming trend of entitled, frustrated, lazy, listless, directionless, melancholy, losers. My generation more than any prior it seems, is willing to take up the narratives that create cults of victim-hood, of victim identity. IS there something unique about my generation in and of themselves? Did the problem start in existence and not in essence? Was there something in the water? This is a many, many faceted issue that I dont think there is one answer to but I can contemplate one.

I have dabbled in martial arts for many years. Regrettably, I have never really committed to any one teacher, system, or style for very long due to whatever life circumstances ect. excueses.... yada yada... There exists in martial arts though this idea of lineage, and not all lineages are the same, not all lineages are created equal. I was recently talking to a friend and member of my hometown crew who trains Ju-Jitsu at the Renzo Gracie Academy in New York City, where through hard work and dedication he earned himself up to this point a Blue Belt under John Danaher. John Danaher was recently featured on Joe Rogan's podcast, and is the ju-jitsu coach of Georges St. Pierre. We were discussing the merits of the belt system and the prestige associated with where the backing and training that led to that belt came from. In my brother's case his blue belt came to him from hard earned world class instruction. There are men out there who are 'black belts' who have been tested less and put in much less work under less prestigious schools and trainers , of course, but what I think it really boils down to is there is great importance in mentor-ship. While there is still respect for this in the martial arts to some extent, though like most other facets of life, you can see the first signs of the creeping disease at the edges. Men today are directionless often because they lack teachers, mentors, road plans, guides, archetypal beings of strength and greatness for them to model themselves after. Instead most modern men are content to just sit and stare and marvel at great men who are bold and daring and skilled on television screens as they watch passively or mash buttons endlessly in an attempt to make them feel some false sense of real accomplishment and mastery in their otherwise meaningless life. Men should be seeking training and knowledge from the best of the best in every field and aspect of their life, be that through a formal apprenticeship, or books, or youtube videos, or email! whatever! It has never been easier.

When one spars with another, especially someone of much greater skill, you are entering a controlled environment, an ehco chamber, where growth can be facilitated constructively and precisely. There are no death blows so one can feel confident entering the ring that while one might get humbled and have his most glaring weaknesses exposed, he will walk away able to heal his wounds, alter his technique, his philosophy, his methods, his defenses, and grow stronger for it. This is the only kind of safe space that should be available for modern men in all aspects of life and these ideas apply to all aspects of life... be it finances, relationships, fitness, tribe, spirituality!

One of the main differences I see between traditional right hand path religions by and large and left hand path and pagan paths is that approach to the gods and spirits as great teachers, mentors. We Spar with our Gods! And the Gods test us in mighty, tailored, strange ways so that we might grow. The Gods, though they could crush you with one blow, allow you to land many small victories, small blows in life, but they throw many challanges that rattle and cut right through our defenses, our biases and our unconscious weaknesses. The modern man who believes himself the perpetual victim and member of the modern victim cult cannot learn under these conditions because he is always under the impression that he is simply under a viscious attack, so therefore he has zero room for growth.