First Savage Law
Civilize the Mind but Make Savage the Body
The first and most important savage law is "Civilize the mind but make savage the body". This is one of the first laws I was introduced to as a child in karate class. Through the teachings of my Sensei I learned the true meaning of this law through hard work and dedication over a span of 14 years. At the age of 4 reciting this law didn't mean much to me I was like a parrot just repeating my Sensei's words. But after many years of reciting this law I learned to truly apply it. My dojo was very unique in its methods. Our studies of mixed martial arts with a strong foundation in Goju Ryu prepared me for much more in life than a street scuffle. It prepared me for life, battle, and my interactions with others. I slowly became a better man, brother,and son. My permission to study martial arts depended not only on monthly fees, but also a lot of important factors in my everyday life. Parents at my dojo could throw all the money they wanted but if grades weren't up to par, kids were not able to attend classes. My Sensei held education on a very high pedestal.
Knowledge plus strenuous physical activity were the two main priorities as a karateka. Even as I prepared to test into my black belt knowledge and application of knowledge were as crucial as my physical fitness. "The Examination" involved intense physical testing paired with a 10 page essay on my understanding of martial arts and the positive effect it had on my life. Not many black-belts are put through such testing the belt seems more like a giveaway for many. My Sensei showed me he wasn't creating boys who could defend themselves he was building a league of extraordinary young men. Through the process we became soldiers of a special kind.
In order to truly claim savage you must obey and maintain the laws. In order to conquer the first law you must spark your flame for knowledge and at the same protect the temple which it resides in. They say "health is wealth" and for a man like me its all about the riches. First muscle we must learn to exercise is the mind. This is done through educating yourself on a daily basis regardless of the medium. No man of moderate intelligence was ever overcome by a man of belligerence and brawn (Look at David and Goliath). Its one thing to work hard, but eventually the body gets run down. The mind takes much longer to wear out(Mind Over Matter). We must not only depend on the education that is socially accepted. Primary and secondary schooling are just not enough. We must thirst and lust for knowledge beyond what we are told to learn. We must seek knowledge beyond what is expected of us. Knowledge provided by school systems is the bare minimum. Its the knowledge you gain outside of school that really sticks. In school most students learned through the dump truck method. We learn everything we can just to pass a test, then as soon as we pass the test we dump out all the wisdom we gained to make room for our next lessons. Lessons we choose to pick up are usually applied and repeated if the outcome is favorable these eventually become routine. Through practice we make perfect and through repetition we make routine. This is true knowledge. This is the kind of knowledge you retain even years after being introduced. This is how you make the mind civilized. Civilization itself is built on the rejection of ignorance and the embrace of wisdom.
To make savage the body is to attain a level of physical excellence that allows you to conquer your opponent efficiently in a physical manner. With a mind full of wisdom and strategy and a body capable of great physical feats, man becomes unstoppable. Through exercise and proper dieting we can maximize and truly get closer to resembling our bodily potential.Our minds can only take us so far as can our bodies. Get both body and mind in shape and we prove a force to be reckoned with. The ability to directly act on your best ideas is truly a gift. They say if you want a job done right do it yourself. In a world of over consumption and sloppy bodies thoughts can easily be discouraged by physical limitations. Don't be that person. Do for yourself!
So in order to truly civilize the mind and make savage the body we must read daily and exercise regularly. These two activities will help you excel in many aspects of life. So I urge you to go out and grab a book that interests you and also buy a gym pass or just go to a local park and exercise both mind and body. You will thank me later. Until next time keep it LYM.