Posted by: Michael Rickicki | 06/30/2020

The True Enemy

My physical training has been going well and by well I mean simply that I have been doing it, not that I’m any good at it. This week I’ve managed to fit in a Muay Thai lesson and a boxing lesson as well as my conditioning routine and some runs (note that the plantar fasciitis seems to have let up). All of this combined with regular fasting is meant to get me in shape for the hard times I’m sure are to come (and if I’m wrong I will be glad for it) but it can be easy to lose sight of the true goal: to liberate myself from the kilesas.

You see, if you ever watch any prepper channels on YouTube or are a member of survivalist groups and forums there is always this idea of bugging out. In other words, you stock up supplies and an obscene amount of weapons and you run away to the country where you set up cannot and defend it tooth and nail. I’ve come to realize that this approach is not only impractical for me but it goes against everything I believe in. Call it my bodhisattva aspiration but when things get bad I want to be able to help. I don’t want to run away and kill whoever gets in my way. I want to learn the skills that are needed to help and, at the very least, have an open heart and arms for those suffering.

Now, I’m not a Pollyanna about this. There will be those looking to take advantage but that is what wisdom is for. Nonetheless, the true enemies are inside and they are the ones that make it hard to know what the right thing to do truly is. May we subdue our anger and learn to benefit ourselves and all beings.

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Shillelagh Studies

A hub for the music, culture, knowledge, and practice of Irish stick-fighting, past and present.