Lone Warrior

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A true martial artist must often study alone. For alone is as we spend most of our time. It is in this solitude that we develop particular methods and regimes, tailored specifically for the individual. A habit of training style that revolves around life. I pull large amounts of inspiration from mythology in all pursuits of life. Just as mythology is a large bases for any religion, any way, any spirituality, any cultural expression of self outside of modern times. For today’s mythology is bound to the glowing boxes, bound to slavery and desire of the mob. No longer the cultural expression of self. Therefore the desire of the martial artist is to find something outside of this lowness of the human desire. This is the bases of martial arts. To guide us above, perhaps away. While grounding us to truthful action and behaviour. To seek more than the temporary pride and disgust of the mobs desire and the desire for the mob… My method is of the Lone Warrior. This is not simply the aspect of training alone as one must often do to obtain true mastery of self. This lies in mythology. This lies in technical understanding and practice. This is my way.

Mythologically I am most inspired by the aspect of the Lone Warrior. In a way, this is the core of European mythological traditions. Norse mythology, a final recording of European paganism, a recording, not a way. As that has been lost, never to be found. When studying such a thing, a key figure is the Einherjar, that is the Lone Warrior. Not the Single Warrior, in reference to one battle, this is modern armchair weak gibberish. The aspect of Lone is great importance. Just as Thor is ‘He who rides alone’. The greatest of Northern European champions The Hound, the key character of our greatest epic, is a face of this Lone Warrior aspect. As he stands alone against all. A terrifying yet beautiful champion. With strange personality traits of artistic behaviour, bearing and words, extreme introverting and extreme extroverting. Sensitivity that when exposed to such a life as that time, caused extreme changes in behaviour. Locked in complete psychosis in a way due to cultural upbringing and beliefs. Humble and honorable, proud and beautiful. Yet his bravery, his way, the teachings of the story, speak that one must be able to stand alone. This is the key element of many northern European myths. The cultural ways. The Einherjar are chosen champions. Lone Warriors, for they are capable of such a thing. Many men are not. Many men need the group, the tribe, to function and feel importance. This is not a bad thing, however one must be able to be the Lone. For this is were true strength develops. From your shield, not those besides you. This becomes more and more important as time becomes modern. As neighbors are no longer such a thing, and in a way, there are very few allies to be had in a modern capitalist society, and none of the same sex seen through the entire life. Thus we see the Lone warrior again and again. The archetype expressed in a multitude of ways. The ways of solitude and strength are expressed in many cultures, for there is much to find. A teaching that is to be harnessed. A teaching that is again and again bound to such a mythology.

Let us role-play momentarily into such a mindset as the Einherjar. First and foremost, there is no such thing as a religion as the men followed in today’s time. What religion it was, we do not know. We simply have later recorded mythologies, presumably attaching the stories to a remnant of a religion. Perspective: Consume Thyself. If so, we will continue. Such men truly believed in the afterlife of Valhalla. To live a life of worth to enter such a realm. What type of life, may be more open ended ethically that one could ever imagine. And please be real with such understanding, such things are not romantic and many aspects thoroughly disgusting during such a time. This does not apply to every man, only the cultural mob. This is why I truly stand by The Hounds Way, for this was an honourable and upstanding example of humanity and the martial Way. Regardless, the Einherjar must constantly prepare for the events of Ragnarok, there in lies the martial arts. Yet these men were not to face other men. They were to face the Jotnar. The mighty eaters of flesh. Powerful and hungry. Ravagers of the world, the bane of mankind. This was to be understood while living. Destined to face such opponents. Destined to pursue such prowess to stand ready in life, and afterwards death. And therefore it would be the warriors desire to obtain this ability, this prowess. To be found worthy of Valhalla.

Martial Arts. What type of training, we do not know. In such a culture you find particular weapons. The type of weapons you train with dictate what you become. The Dane Axe is a prevalent weapon found within such a culture, as well as far before. Artistically represented and by artifact into the bronze age. The Great Weapon. A weapon of the aristocratic elite. For training with such a thing is a Way unto itself. Training with such a weapon changes the body into its own aspect. Capable of standing against many, or something vastly more powerful than you. A weapon of the Lone Warrior. This brings to light the heroism, regardless of perspective, of the Lone Warrior of Stamford bridge, undoubtably armed with a Dane Axe. This also brings to mind the mythological aspect of the greatsword in later times as hinted at in the Goliath Fightbook. For the greatsword allowed one to stand against something vastly powerful. To both be Goliath and David. To both be the Giant and the Giant slayer. Just as the Einherjar. There is great power both martially and symbolically of such a weapons.

Technically speaking, I am obsessed with such a weapon. The greatsword, the greataxe, etc. It is my training of such weapons that have truly forced my Way. My mindest and fighting spirit. One must train day in and day out to understand what I speak of. Take your reps extremely high, hundreds, sometime thousands. Both fencing around and not. These weapons hold great power. Power of health, body and mind. You will not desire vast bulk, as ignorant understanding wishes to perceive in its calculation of combative strength, Such practice will not make you appear this way, especially when seeking to truly become your best with such weapons. The observant can tell were one puts there time and effort. What energy is combative and what energy is not. Simply do, and you will discover. As it is difficult to express. A few days ago a practiced with a longsword for the first time in three months, it felt as a knife. This makes such a thing very deadly. The constant use of a great weapon changes your psychology. That you could truly stand against something vastly more powerful than you, for you too hold such power in a different way, when weapon and body are one. Every weapon comes alive, every weapon wielded with ease, in a way you will never understand unless you dedicate yourself to the great weapon. This is not only bound to European martial arts. I am passionate of many Japanese arts as well. The Kanabo a powerful symbol and tool… The way of such a ‘Way’ truly creates an archetype, a power source to energize life. In that the great weapon is a Way unto itself. Impossible to express to those who do not know. Repetition upon repetition. The spirit to stand against something vastly powerful. The spirit to stand against many. The spirit to stand alone.

Till Death

I am ashamed of my generation. This does not mean I hold past generations in higher regard. Simply viewing my own. The laziness and lack of effort many make is open and obvious. The quality of being. A truth: your body represents a deep inner aspect of yourself. This is not vanity. This is not who is pretty and not. This is simply truth. My generation is incapable if not being in front of a computer. Many are incapable of effort. Masculine effort. That is capable of body and will. Not what one can do at a desk. Unhealthy bodies have become the obvious norm, a following of the past few generations. Commercialized diets, sitting entertainment, sitting work, sitting life styles. There is nothing wrong with making money while sitting. In all regards it is best to make money while actually not trading time after initial investment. It is simply the dignity of still being physically capable as a human being. The lazy, snobbish, I am above the effort of today, this generation carries is appalling. There is a timeline of capability we as men have. This timeline is far mis calculated in the modern beings perspective. The idea of down hill at thirty disgusts me. It is a lazy excuse, to enhance laziness.

My perspective, that of martial arts, dictates a much different timeline. Timeline based upon healthy eating and training habits. With overlap expressing transition. There are many examples to give, yet are unneccesary. First and foremost, as a man, you have little use below the age of twenty five. Regardless of talent. From the ages of twenty five through forty five, you are at your peak as a “fighter”. Your blending of athletic ability and skill, while rooted as a man. From the ages of 35 through 65 you are at you peak as a martial artist. Your blending of artistic talent extremely developed, alongside continued athletic ability maintained. 40 through 65, you are the King who still commands on the frontline, you are to be rooted, skilled, strong, and respected. Whether the martial arts “master”, “business owner”, etc. From 65 through death, you are the elder. The King who rules from the throne, yet still able to perform for a long while. The martial arts high master and sage. Your wisdom from success and failure to be omnipotent. While maintaining rooted nature and strength of body. Expansion of business and art to ever continue through this age. Obviously changing as you enter venerable elder stage of late seventies and above, were physical nature means less. Yet your body is still to represent who you are on the inside.

In this sense, we are to ever grow more powerful in life. Although the form of power changing. Our roots are to grow deeper, as branches grow higher. When viewing what walks around in western culture, while calling itself a man, we might feel we live in a joke. It is true, we do live in a joke. Yes, this is judgmental, but it is deserved. Yes fingers are pointed, the intent is to stab. What walks around is far disconnected from what we truly are. What we, as men, are supposed to be. Ones body is a direct reflection of ones spirit and lifestyle. You represent yourself. This means nothing to so many. And therefore we live in such states of depression. Such states of sickness. Not even realizing how sick we are, for sickness is the norm. And if it is the norm, then by all means we must be it. Doctor prescribed medications make you a drug addict as much as any illegal substance. Alcohol is a hardcore drug as well. Prescriptions for mental anguish are due to our own laziness. How could you not live in torture, when confined in such a vessel as your body, and life style that created it. Prescriptions for health are causing men to live longer then life would allow. Prolonging their filthy lifestyles and eating habits. Fixing the immediate threat, yet offering no resolution. Such is modern medicine.

Stand. Take responsibility for yourself. Your lifestyle. You will feel such worth, such ability. You will feel as nature. Or: you will feel as a slave. That society is holding you down. That you are judged. That you feel sick. That running a small distance may kill you. That dirt may make you feel sick. Touching a rock may make you bleed. Addicted to the chemical grease of the machines food. Addicted to the high of the machines medications. Dependent upon anything else to take away the responsibility that you have control and power to be something vastly greater than what is pressed upon you. The peak of the human potential. Yet all is a waste when health is cast aside. All is a waste.

Safe Place

As human beings it is important that each may have a safe space. Both physically and spiritually. This is not a place of escape, for there is no such thing in this world. This is not a place of weakness, for strength most be given to others at all times. This is a place of regeneration and peace. As a martial artist, there are only two such places one may find. This must be one’s home and one’s training hall.

The world we live in is not a safe place for anyone. To believe this will only bring hurt upon your path. This is due to the innate instinct of the human. There is no such thing as community. The world is directly one of competition. The world wishes to see you fall. This is found in professional relationships, close relationships, and everyday passings throughout the day. Without armour, one is to be harmed. Therefore, it is your responsibility to wear the armour, especially when others can not. To give respect and honour to those who carry high morals. For this is a rare thing to find.

Of the home, one can say I am a “traditionalist”. I care nothing of debate as to how anyone wishes to live their life, as long as it brings harm to no one. It is the responsibility of a man to make his house a safe place for his wife and family. To be both the foundation and the roof. To give the support, guidance and protection. The security that there is no anxiety to feel in this ever chaotic world. Thus allowing your wife to give the care and love that a man and his children desires and needs. To make the house a safe place for him. For it is easy to fall into hatred and warlike perspectives when left to ones masculine self. This is a topic that can be wrote of extensively. The modern quality of men, and the lack of many qualities we now face.

Next is the safe place of the training hall. This is to be a place to both cultivate the body and spirit. A place of safety, to prepare for the world of hate. Mutual respect, alongside constant forward development, and what the entails. A place of training and ever testing. Inner self exposure to reveal paths of growth. A place to inspire the heart to greater acts of courage and dedication to a noble cause. Yes, a place of romantic idealism, for both the child and the elder. I have no training hall. Yet, one day I wish to have such a place, one not a public entity. Not all halls are created equal. Both in quality of leadership and atmosphere.

In leadership, we are in an ever losing world. I stand behind traditional martial arts behavior and teaching when it comes to leadership, and man to man dealings. In a world were sports gyms are ripe, and behavioral desires have fallen to the absolute lowest examples, we are in need of noble Tradition. We are in need of respect and true spirit. We are in need of humility veiling a true Dragon. There are many types of leaders. The highest position, must be willing of completing the lowest task, else he is unworthy of leadership. The highest ranked must still be able to place himself upon his knees to replace floor boards alongside the white belt… Mankind’s desire for importance of position, and the insecurity that brings if ones spirit is undeserving is a disease this day. “Leaders” who are desperate and embarrassed of their true personal traits, ever seeking dominance in insecure ways. These men are many and one of true spirit can easily see such men. These are the pitfalls and relationships to be avoided. I have experienced first hand the lowness of leaders, insecurities and self hatred that manifest into the hall, upon students. From sporting gyms, to traditional arts. Every man must live in the solitude of their own home, for the qualities they bring to the hall they take home. Every man that walks, travels towards an end, unfortunately dragging others alongside the way. Some men never create a safe place, for themselves or others, for their armour is unforged. Therefore understand what you take part in, with who you choose to associate, with who you give and take…

In the training hall, the current lowest, must be able to see himself in the current highest, and vice versa. A relationship were all can meet in the middle, with the respect that we are here together. This is the heart of the Training hall. Yet this is were the discipline of the hall comes into play. Ritual, and the importance to always maintain such a thing. A safe place is not about the classes being full of laughter and uncontrolled smiles. This is giving out a shortcoming. It is not about belts given too rapidly. It is not about pretending to be in the modern military and such breaking abuse. This is not the legacy of the martial arts. Not what is being created. Not about massive classes to pull profit. For a teacher is to be as selective of students, as a student is to be of a teacher. It is about ritual, past legacy and spirit, the maintenance of such a thing. For only here and in ones home is such a thing possible. It is to find the sage and the warrior. It is about the atmosphere, the temple.  I am an artist, it is called martial “arts”. The spirit should be tangible in the setting. A place to inspire in silence. The setting, the floors, the countless weapons and decor. It must be an inspiring place, the spirit saturating the walls. Respect for tradition and guide, a separate world momentarily, a world of empowerment and safety. It is in this empowerment, that one will then bring forth this spirit into a spiritless world. And thus righteous ritual and tradition will live that much longer. It is my desire to one day create such a place. A training hall that when one steps into, they have entered through a portal, a portal closed to many. Into a time long past, or perhaps a time that never existed. Were the rare ideals of chivalry may still be harnessed. A safe place, not of ease and relaxation, of empowerment and ever striving. To carry this forth into a deadening world. For it is these ideals that build our houses, or businesses, our world, our legacy. Our place of silence in this world of noise. It is carrying such tradition that the great masters of old smile down upon us. That in a world of darkness, some men still carry a torch.

Lifestyle

We are as we practice. We are as we eat. Humans all fall in to a habitual style of life. When following the path of martial arts this style should be one that revolves around empowerment. Practice and eating habits go hand and hand. Two acts that are intimately intwined, inescapable from one another. Ones health is ones choice. Choose and follow. The Way is to empower you through all of life’s years. Each man must find his own path. A lifestyle that I have embedded myself into is as follows, written in generalized terms:

Practice:
-7 days a week I train in martial arts. This revolves around the Greatsword (my core), Longsword, Knife, Unarmed Combatives and Ringen. Depending on my current inspiration this can change to Axe, Greataxe, Staff, Shields, Sword, Rapier, Buckler, Pole arms, Spear, Broadsword, Targe, Dirk, anything in the Hema spectrum and before, anything outside of it, Muay Boran, Kanabo, Odachi, Kenjutsu, Kendo, “Japanese arts”, Various Striking methods, Ballistics (old and modern), etc.
-7 days a week Stretching or Yoga.
-2 days a week Weight Lifting. One upper body, one lower body.
-2 days a week Running. Abs. Followed by weighted vest (60 lbs.) for martial arts. This is to somewhat mimic armour. 1 day is ‘Shield Run’ (Fire Body).
– Lightning Body-1 Day a week Explosive and Balance Body Weight training. This is jump push ups/squats, one handed pushups, one leg squats, “martial shoot training”, etc.
– Oak Body- 1 Day a week Body Hardening. Jump rope. High repetition endurance Strikes, “Bare Knuckle”(Hand Wraps), Striking body with oak staff, striking wood pell with limbs, “Ringen Hardening/ snaking the pell”, etc. This is typically done several times, sometimes everyday, a week.
– Stone Body- 1 Day a week Grip, Balance, Hardening and Strength training. All aspects involve 30 pound granite rough hewn blocks. Strong man techniques, bending and breaking metal. Sledge hammer (6 ft oak handle, 12 lb. head, 16 lb. total. Heavy, yet still somewhat usable in combative form.) Hammer fist, palm strike hardening on granite blocks. Balancing on granite blocks standing upright (mainly ‘warrior 3 and tree’). Grip holding of blocks, one in each hand, until failure.
-Sometimes/oftentimes a skip a running day once a week, and add the weighted vest to another. Choosing to only train the Shield Run .

Diet:
-Many thanks to my wife who is a nutritionist. Cornerstones are: Great quantities of Grains and Nut mixes( Oats, Millet, Quinoa, Amaranth, Chia Seeds, Almonds, Walnuts, Buckwheat, Pumpkin Seeds, along with Maple, Honey, etc.) Large amount of Lentils with only salt, pepper and nutritional yeast flakes. (This, or black beans, etc. is what you should eat if you are vegan, not soy. Nutritional Yeast should be a staple.) Always Dried Cranberries, Apples and various berries. Sides of Brown Rice or Potatoes and Onions, Broccoli, Greens beans, Peas, Avocado, variations, etc. One Apple Cider Vinegar “shot” loaded with Turmeric, a little Cayenne and Lemon juice every other day. My Dog and I eat a large amount of Chicken or Fish at dinner. Any oils are Coconut or Sunflower Seed oil, sometimes/oftentimes I use Butter and eat cheese. One day a week I eat a lion’s share of red meat (typically high quality Steak (rare) and Sausage together). Sometimes/oftentimes I consume various other “things”.  The “consistent” foundation is the importance. Around 4,000 calories a day.

A generalized overview of a lifestyle that works for me. One that I pull empowerment from.