I once told Shihan that sometimes I feel like I hear a lot of complaints when I volunteer my own time to try to do something to help people. He told me “Usually when you try to do something good, you get kicked in the teeth…but do it anyway.”
I believe the true goal of a martial artist is to try to do something good. To do something that improves the world around you in some way. To take whatever talents you have and learn to use them to help others. Whether it be in your own dojo, or in the world at large. This is not in some super hero kind of way. The purpose of this path is not to lead you to glory. Martial arts is something that can teach you to give selflessly, without expectation of reward, or even appreciation, but simply because it is the right thing to do.
That’s why I do the things for my dojo that I do. Not because I want some kind of recognition or credit for them, but because they need done and I am able to do them. I feel a sense of obligation to help in any way I can. So when people complain about how I do these things, I think to myself “What do you do to help out?”, if the answer is “Not much”, then I can’t be bothered with your judgment of my volunteerism.
Despite the fact that not everyone is satisfied with what I do, I will keep trying to help people and do good things, because it is the right thing to do. Even if that means I keep getting kicked in the teeth.
“Feels like a kick in the teeth, I can take it.
Throw your stones and you won’t see me break it.
Say what you want, take your shots.
You’re setting me free with one more kick in the teeth” -Papa Roach