Seneca’s letter to Lucilius for martial arts, quiet, I don’t want to talk to you about philosophy but about the only thing that really has value to any human being on earth, his time.
Your time in martial arts or in the areas of combat is very important because it allows you to have a proper evolution in the areas of your interest.
The concept of smart work is fine but the complexity of the fight still requires hours of your time to devote, because it works not only on a specific area, but technique, sparring, conditioning, etc. and even worse if there is multi-disciplinarity and the use of cutting or percussion weapons, up to the systems where maybe there are also the use of firearms.
But back to Seneca’s letter:
“Behave like this, Lucilio my, claim your right over yourself and the time that until today was taken away from you or carped or lost, collect it and treasure it.
Convince yourself that this is just how I write to you: certain moments are taken away from us, others are stolen and others are lost in the wind.
But the most shameful thing is to waste time for negligence.
Think about it: of our existence, much of it disappears into doing evil, most in doing nothing and all in acting differently from what is due.
Can you point me to someone who gives a fair value to his time, and to his day, who understands that he dies every day?
Here’s our mistake.
We see death before us, and instead much of it is already behind us: past life belongs to death.
So, Lucilio dear, do what you write to me: put to good use every minute; you will be less enslaved to the future if you seize the present.
Between postponements, life is gone.
Nothing belongs to us, Lucilio, only time is ours.
Nature has made us masters of this only good, fleeting and labile: anyone who wants can deprive us of it.
Men are so foolish that if they get insignificant goods, of no value and in any case compensable, they accept that they are put into account and, instead, no one thinks they have anything for the time they have received, when it is precisely the only thing that not even a grateful person can return.”
Why am I writing this to you?
Use your time
If your passion is martial arts devote your time without getting lost in something fake and useless.
Martial art is something practical where you don’t need to talk but do, this blog for me is an effort to help people discover the world of martial arts but above all it is aimed at people who want to become experts in combat.
I don’t talk to you about some martial art in particular because, however different in approach they are always made by men with the same characteristics (a head with two arms and two legs) therefore the bio-mechanics of strokes and movements are always more similar than one thinks despite the diversity of approach, training method and emphasis on an approach to combat compared to another martial art.
Now in this busy society it is very difficult to devote hours every day to this passion so it is very important to do a job focused and with little dispersion of energies in unnecessary exercises and methods that do not develop what you really need to become an expert.
Respect your time and use it, it’s your real money.
Another story about time
A professor stood in front of his philosophy class and had some objects in front of him, when the class started to shut up, he took a large jar of empty mayonnaise and started filling it with golf balls, then asked the students if the jar was full and they said it was.
The professor then took a can of gravel and flipped it into the mayonnaise jar, shook it slightly, and the pebbles positioned themselves in the empty spaces between the golf balls.
He asked the students again if the jar was full and they agreed it was.
The professor then took a box of sand and flipped it into the jar, of course the sand spread everywhere inside.
He asked again if the jar was full and the students answered with a unanimous ‘yes’.
The professor then drew two glasses of wine from under the chair and overturned their entire contents in the jar, thus effectively filling in the blanks in the sand; students laughed.
‘Now,’ said the professor as soon as the laugh subsided, I want you to consider this jar as your life: golf balls are the important things; your family, your children, your health, your friends and your passions, the things for which, if all else were lost, and only these remained, your life would continue to be full; pebbles are the other things that matter like your work, your home, your car… sand is everything else, little things.
If you put the sand in the jar first there will be no room for gravel or even for golf balls, the same goes for life, if you spend all your time and your energy behind the little things you will no longer have room for the things that are important to you.
When you feel like you have too many things to manage in life, when 24 hours in a day is not enough… remember the jar of mayonnaise and the two glasses of wine…
A professor stood in front of his philosophy class and had some objects in front of him.
Pay attention to things that are indispensable to your happiness; Play with your kids, enjoy the family and parents as long as they are there…. take your partner out to dinner… and not just on important occasions! so much there will always be time to clean the house or make appointments.
Take care of yourself before golf balls, the things that really matter.
Set priorities… the rest is just sand.’
One of the students raised his hand and asked what the beer glass represented.
The professor smiled:
‘I’m glad you asked, it just serves to show you that no matter how full your life may seem, there will always be room for a couple of beers with a friend.’
Now that you’ve heard these stories use your time for what you really want, don’t waste it.
P.s.When you feel like you have too many things to manage in life, when 24 hours in a day is not enough, remember this “little” story.