Every relationship, every interaction we have, becomes the foundation for our future.
We cannot live in spite of others, successfully, forever. Along the path, at some point, for some reason, we are going to truly need other people’s help. When this occurs, if, up to this point, our only contribution to our relationships has been to take what we want from them, without giving anything back to them, we may be sorely disappointed by the reactions others have toward our needs and wants.
Even if we do not see the immediate results of it, the energy we create in our relationships is reciprocal. That which we put in or take out comes back to us in kind, perhaps not immediately, maybe not even with the same exact people or in the same circumstances, but, with every relationship in our lives, we are either building or destroying our futures. Some relationships fall apart through no fault of our own, but we are judged, in the long run, by our intentions and our efforts.
If we give freely of ourselves, if we are generous, if we are kind, if we are gracious, sincere, and honest, we add integrity, support, and strength to who we will become. Conversely, if we are careless, selfish, cruel, and spiteful, we will find, eventually, that we are cold, alone, and exposed to the elements, without support or shelter. The good news is that we get to choose the path we take toward our future, every moment of every day.
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 and Kogen Dojo where he teaches Taikyoku Budo and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, as well as a founding member of the Severna Park and Baltimore Holistic Chamber of Commerce.
Artwork by Ana, except where otherwise noted.
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