Our Legacy Is Not Ours Alone

There is no such thing as an insignificant interaction.

We do not know the full extent of the impact that we are making on the lives of those around us. We cannot fully comprehend how every gesture, expression, word, and action reverberates and resonates through lives and across time. Once it leaves us, it belongs to the world, now and in the future.

The full effect of the things we do and say is hidden to us. No matter how trivial or insignificant we may feel a look, a comment, or a touch is, it leaves an impression on the recipient. It is stored away in the bodies and minds of those who experience it. It helps to shape who they become and how they act toward others.

We must ask ourselves then, what kind of legacy are we leaving on the lives of those we come into contact with and the people they will come into contact with? What will the history of our words, our actions, our facial expressions, and our body language be across time and space? Will we leave a legacy of smiles, graciousness, appreciation, and acceptance, or will it be something else?

Holistic Budo: As it is in budo, so too it is in life. As it is in life, so too it is in budo.

-Robert Van Valkenburgh is co-founder of Taikyoku Mind & Body, Severna Park’s Holistic Chamber of Commerce, and Kogen Dojo where he teaches Taikyoku Budo and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

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