I like this quote by Liu Ji (July 1311 – May 1375) who is also known as Liu Bowen. He was a Chinese military strategist, statesman, and poet who lived in the late Yuan and early Ming dynasties. He served as a key adviser to Zhu Yuanzhang (the Hongwu Emperor), the founder of the Ming dynasty, in the latter’s struggle to overthrow the Yuan dynasty and unify China under his rule. Liu is also known for his prophecies and has been described as the “Divine Chinese Nostradamus.” He and Jiao Yu co-edited the military treatise known as the Huolongjing (Fire Dragon Manal).
This quote, inspired by Taoism, resonates with practicality and illustrates what I teach through the Warrior’s Edge. (For more on the Warrior’s Edge, be sure to download the free Your Warrior’s Edge e-book and read the opening letter or article.) When you look at the principles of warriors in this way, you can apply the strategic principles of Sun Tzu to business, as many have, including the merchant Bo Gui in the fifth century BC or even calligraphy and painting as Wang Xizhi did in the fourth century.
If you think of a warrior in this Chinese Taoist way, you have a cultivated man of spirit and culture who is trained in martial arts and strategy, not just a specialized man of arms. This cultivated man only manifests as a warrior to battle in combat when necessary. It is the same way that I teach the development of character to apply to all areas of one’s life through martial art training. The ideal is not to be able to beat people in physical combat, but to develop one’s spirit and character. However, I do also believe that we must not forget our training is martial, and not simply exercise or dance.
I understand those who train solely for self-defense. I spend part of my time teaching just that. But for those that study a martial art, there is more to it than just the physical fighting skills. We use the training to help discover our warrior’s edge. And we hone that edge to better be able to face all challenges life offers, and to live life more powerfully.
Discover Your Warrior’s Edge and download the free e-book now!