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Defining the Mind of the Spiritual Warrior

Here’s the first draft of an article I wrote many years ago that eventually led to a chapter in my book, The Warrior is Silent: Martial Arts and the Spiritual Path. You may find it interesting.
 
The first area of study which the Spiritual Warrior must undertake on the path to martial enlightenment is that of a refined mindful attitude towards himself and the world around him.  Whereas the common martial artists focus simply on the development of physical techniques, the Spiritual Warrior chooses to not only make himself a positive vehicle for Universal Consciousness but also to aid all of those in need around him.  To affect this positive conveyance of energy the mind of the Spiritual Warrior must be refined with a clear understanding of how the individual most effectively interacts with both man and nature around himself.  From this, battles are won without ever being fought and goodness is allowed to prevail.
 
Code of the Spiritual Warrior
The ancient warrior groups such as the Hwa Rang and the Samurai embraced a code of conduct.  From this code they were able to draw a clearer understanding of accepted warrior behavior and from this move forward with a defined attitude towards life, combat, and the realms of spiritual enlightenment. The modern Spiritual Warrior, equally, must have a refined code of conduct to move forward and consciously advanced in the path of enlightened martial arts.
 
Historically, the codes of conduct the warrior groups followed were very similar. They each emphasized, honor, reverence for superiors, truthfulness, and just killing. Today, the Spiritual Warrior emphasis is generally not focused on the taking of the life of others for his country or kingdom.  For this reason, the code of conduct for the modern Spiritual Warrior, though based in ancient traditions and understandings, possesses a slightly different emphasis: that of illuminated interactive behavior with the world and humanity around yourself, ultimately leading to martial enlightenment.
 
The Code of Conduct for the modern Spiritual Warrior is:
1. Honor
2. Truthfulness
3. Respect for all being
4. The understanding of divine perfection
 
Honor
Honor is at the heart of every activity the Spiritual Warrior undertakes. 
 
Honor is never based in self-motivated righteousness. Honor is developing your own worth in association with the grand scheme of the universe.
 
Honor comes to the individual not from amassing personal gains but from refining their body and mind to a level where others naturally develop respect for this individual.  This respect is never forced on anyone, and it is never expected.  As this respect is not based in desire, it remains in a pure unadulterated form.  From this, the honored individual is allowed to performed good deeds for the world and expect no compensation for their completion.
 
All actions the Spiritual Warrior undertakes are done so with honor at their basis.  An honorable deed is doing something which needs to be done. This is accomplished either for the good of mankind, the good of a singular individual, or simple because it is a chore which must be accomplished. An honorable deed is one which does not require undue compensation, either financial or emotional.
 
Any life deed can be done honorably. It is solely based on the mindset you possess while accomplishing it.  Equally, any life deed can be done dishonorably.  This occurs when the individual taking the action does so based upon ego or self-gratifying emotions.
 
An honorable man never takes more than he is due.  He never takes from those who cannot give.  He never practices deception while accomplishing his actions. He never allows desires or his ego to motivate the actions he takes.
 
Many people justify their actions because they believe what they are obtaining; be it: economic, emotional, or physical gratification is worth what it costs others. Justification is never the path of the Spiritual Warrior. The Spiritual Warrior would rather suffer himself, thus gaining insightful wisdom, than to cause another person to suffer in any way, shape, or form.
 
Honor gives birth to morals. Morals are not the temporary ideology of a specific culture in a specific period of time.  Morals are the universal right and wrong.
 
Right is always right, wrong is always wrong. If you must think about your actions to justify them, they are not morally right.
 
The entire world appreciates and embraces those actions which are taken rightly. The entire world looks down on those actions which embrace wrong.
 
Right and wrong is a simple choice to make when you allow your mind to be freed from impure unnecessary desires. 
 
Truthfulness
Honor is honesty; with yourself and with those around you. There is never a reason to deceive another person; intentionally or unintentionally. Deception is dishonorable. Therefore, the Spiritual Warrior is truthful to himself and all of those around him.
 
Respect of All Living Beings
By following the path of the Spiritual Warrior one comes to understand that all creatures, human and otherwise, have a purpose to this world.  As all have a purpose, all beings must be respected.  From inter-mutual respect, divine understanding is born. 
 
Those who do not respect others are lost in the falsehood that they possess a superiority over other people and other creatures. 
 
Without a weapon could a martial artists defeat a tiger?  No. Thus, who is superior?  What occurs when the superior individual needs to enlist the help of person he believes below himself?  The person who is needed no doubt possess skills the self-believed superior individual does not.  At that moment, who is superior?
 
As a basis for spiritual understanding, it must be understood that each entity on this planet has a purpose to serve. Though you may not appreciate what a specific entities function is, you must, none-the-less, respect the fact they have a purpose to this world, or they would not be here. In the case of an individual whose lifestyle you do not condone or appreciate, this is not to say you must associate with them. There is no reason to disturb your peace by associating with someone you do not like or someone who could get you into unnecessary confrontations. As a Spiritual Warrior, however, you are enlightened enough to know that they too serve their divine purpose.  This divine purpose is, of course, probably not understood by them due to the low level of their mental development. This is not important, however, for they do serve a purpose. 
 
By looking deeply into the lives of other individual you will see that they served a function. Thus, you can never know when you will need to employ their services. 
 
Divine Perfection
Divine Perfection is the understanding that nothing in this world happens without a reason.  Everything from the most invigorating exciting event to the worst catastrophe occurrence happens in accordance with a divine purpose.
 
There will be many times that we, as human beings, will not have the power or the understanding or to view an event in its entirety, in a specific moment of time. As time passes, however, the enlightened individual will come to understand how what appeared to be a very negative experience at one point gave birth to a positive experience later. Without seemingly negative events happening, you may not have been forced to move forward onto learning and gaining what you did in a later time. 
 
Accepting Divine Perfection allows you to witness that all events in this world occur for an expanding divine purpose.
 
To view an example that the martial artist may be able to relate to; what if you lose a sparring match?  Are you going to stop training and believe you are a horrible fighter and never spar again?  No, what you will do, is learn from your mistakes and move forward, train harder, and the next time emerge victorious. 
 
This style of learning, from losing, is elemental to the mind of the martial artists.  In life, there will be loss.  What is loss?  The non-desired outcome of a specific event. 
 
If you desired to enter a fighting match and lose, would your losing be a defeat?  If you no longer liked an object, would its being taken from you be a theft? 
 
View deeply into your mind, see what you truly desire.
 
Loss and Gain are all based in the desires of the individual. Thus, they are momentary in their nature as new desires will come with gained life experience.
 
Take the loss, take the injury, take the dishonor, and view it from all sides clearly. Seek out what can you learn from it and how can your life positively be affected by your endurance of it?   Though you, of course, do not like the outcome, allow yourself to grow from it.  Move on.  Become more than the individual who took it from you.
 
View any negative experience as a divine pathway to becoming a more enlightened being.
 
As a Spiritual Warrior you accept the Rightness of the Universe. By accepting Rightness, you are allowed to experience a free mind, not bound by desires for different outcomes than actually occurred.  From this, you can maintain a continued state of meditative thought as your emotions are not unnecessarily stirred.
 
Take action, but do not become bound by your action.  Experience the results, but do not become lost in the outcome.
 
By accepting Divine Perfection the Spiritual Warrior begins to develop insightful understanding of what lay ahead. Some people may refer to this as psychic ability, but, in fact, it is simply a process of removing oneself from being swayed by specific desired outcomes.
 
If you do not care if you win or lose, you will not be unduly affected by joy or anger.  Thus, you will not be excessively motivated to achieving a desired end-result. From this lack of desire, harmony with the universe is developed.  From harmony with the universe comes an innate sense of what is to come.
 
All forms of nature possess varying forms of energy vibrations. The Spiritual Warrior, who does not desire specific outcomes of individual life or world events, begins to quiet his mind and sense and define the different energy vibrations associated with the various forms of life and the earth.  From this energy understanding, he begins to be able to sense oncoming events; be they: the positive or negative energy of an approaching stranger or the larger scale phenomena of that place in the grander scheme of all life.
 
Accepting Divine Perfection allows you to be free.
 
Defining the Mind of Spiritual Warrior
With the Code of Conduct defined for the Spiritual Warrior, we can now begin to view the more refined elements of Mind which the modern martial artist will come to practices as they develop along their path to enlightenment. As each step the Spiritual Warrior takes on his path to enlightenment is done so in a fashion much more refined than that possessed by the common man, he must come to a method of thinking and interacting with the universe around him in an acutely refined fashion. Therefore, each element which influences his life must be mindfully understood for it to become an illuminated part of his understanding.
 
Confrontation
To the individual who is not keenly in control of their emotions, they can be easily lured into unnecessary confrontations: both physical and emotional. What is an unnecessary confrontation?  Any battle which is not waged for the sole purpose of maintaining honor and universal rightness.
 
The luring of one into an unnecessary confrontation gives the provoker empowerment over the person they are provoking. This is quite easily seen, simply observe a person who is attempting to drag you into any type of an altercation; be it an argument or physically coming to blows. Before the battle actually has the chance to begin, you will witness a sense of power and happiness emanating from that instigating individual. This is due to the fact that in their mind they have already begun to take control over you and, thus, win the confrontation.
 
In most cases, and with most individuals, this sense of empowerment is on a subconscious level, and they do not consciously realize they are receiving psychological stimulation from the act of provoking.  Thus, they continue to encounter people in this fashion.
 
This confrontational mentality is the reason most provokers win the battles which they instigate and thus assure themselves of their justification for what they are doing. As they are the one instigating the confrontation, they are mentally prepared before the battle ever begins. To the individual who is accosted, they are generally not in mental readiness for a fight, thus they are easily overpowered.
 
It has long been the teaching of the martial arts that a warrior should be prepared for battle at any time. This way of thinking keeps the individual constantly on edge, however. Thus, maintained peace is not achievable.
 
As energy always attracts the same type of energy, the martial artists who is constantly in wait for the upcoming battle will discover that he, in fact, will always encounter hostile situations. For this reason, the Spiritual Warrior prepares his body and mind for the possibility of imminent battle, but he never allows himself to dwell on the potential of combat. Instead, he lives in a state of peace, knowing that through his understanding of martial techniques rightness he will prevail, and he will merge victorious from any battle he is forced to enter into.
 
By allowing another individual to anger you by words or meaningless actions, gives them power over your emotions and thus, your inner peace. Once lured into senseless verbal or physical battle, the outcome can never be assessed as being worthy of your energy, even if you emerge victorious, for you will not have waged a holy fight. Instead, you will simply have lowered yourself from the heights of spiritual understand and become engaged in a battle of egos. In a battle of egos, there is never a rightful victor.
 
The enticing of one into purposeless warfare is based is desire—desire to appear more powerful, more skilled, more intelligent, or in the case of the socially insecure, simply the ability to disrupt the peace of another.  For all of these reasons, the Spiritual Warrior never allows himself to be purposelessly seduced into battle. Equally, the Spiritual Warrior never pursues unnecessary battle; whether this takes on the form of physical confrontation, emotional arguments, struggling to gain corporate power, or simply jockeying for positing in a traffic jam. 
 
Pursuit of violence always ends in destruction. 
 
How do you feel when you have unnecessarily placed yourself in the realms of confrontation with another individual? Is there ever any lasting enlightenment, or are you simply unduly rocked from your realm of peace? 
 
You may win a battle, but you will have gained nothing if the battle was fought for no reason.
 
Surrender and be like the wind; forceful without ever being seen.