Reprimanding the Soul
One of my favorite spiritual writings comes from the Lebanese poet, philosopher, and artist Kahlil Gibran. In his poem, “Seven Reprimands,” he teaches us of strong human virtues through self examination. This is congruent with our warrior’s path, since a warrior is deﬁned as a strong human being who is unafraid of facing the struggles and the challenges of life, not just in battle. A warrior is not just a person who engages in warlike activities, but a warrior is a person who follows the path of strength, honor, integrity, loyalty and courage.
Let us, then, examine ourselves:
How many times have we taken the easy way out and then complimented ourselves by accepting the praise of others?
How many times have we played sick to avoid responsibility or work?
How many times have we opted to pick up the lightest box when helping our friends move?
How many times have we stayed quiet, refraining from the truth to avoid conflict?
How many times have we blamed others for our mistakes?
How many times have we quit when things got tougher and then consoled ourselves by pointing the finger at others?
How many times have we done something we were supposed to do and looked for praise?
How many times have we taken credit for something we did not do?
How many times have we strutted our fortune in front of those who are less fortunate?
How many times have we taken things for granted and deluded ourselves by saying we deserve better?
We have all done these things before and some of us still do. Life is not meant to be easy and most often, things of value require hard work. We often forget that nobody owes us anything and no one can make us do anything. We are the ones who make the decisions, which affect our lives, and we are the only ones who can change ourselves for the better. So, no matter what happens, the good, the bad, the ugly, we must learn to accept, knowing that no man/woman can pass judgment on our soul. And, it is the strength and vitality of our spirit that will determine our immortality.
Grandmaster Taejoon Lee