Martial Arts Mastery
by Bill Wallauer - 1st Gup Brown Belt
Grandmaster Kim has many stories to tell. Like the sayings of a Zen master or spiritual parables from Western traditions, they distill a lifetime of hard-won wisdom in a few eloquent phrases that linger in the mind. One that I think bears repeating is a story that arose from Grandmaster Kim's constant effort to help his students understand what Martial Arts mastery is.
Kim related that he had seen several instances of people incorrectly attempting
to show Martial Arts mastery. In each instance the show-off had requested
and received volunteers for a demonstration.
Another supposed master - also blindfolded - claimed he would demonstrate how to kick an apple off the volunteer's head. Once again the student gave a perfect demonstration of how to be knocked down by a kick to the head.
final truly frightening story concerned a supposed master who claimed
he was going to throw darts into an apple on a volunteer's head. Thankfully,
the volunteer was facing away from the thrower, because this unhappy volunteer
ended up with a dart stuck in his neck.
Grandmaster lets us know about such things, he is teaching us what he
has learned, In this case, The simplest lesson for us is to not volunteer
to help someone we do not know enough to trust. A deeper lesson can be
learned from examining what a master is by reflecting about what a true
master would do or not do.