When we see that someone is vulnerable and in pain, we have a choice to make.
We can either choose to ignore them, comfort them, or attack them in their moment of weakness.
It may seem obvious which choice will lead to the most good for that person, but life does not always provide us with simple choices.
With every decision we make, we have to contend with our personal histories, our prejudices, our fears, and our desires.
These blur our vision and skew our perceptions.
They make it difficult to think clearly.
And, sometimes they make us choose and act poorly.
Still, the choice is ours to make.
Whichever decision we make will change someone’s life for better or for worse.
In fact, that someone may actually be us.
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 Kogen Dojo Self Defense Academy where he teaches Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
All photos by Robert Van Valkenburgh unless otherwise noted.*
*Robert Van Valkenburgh’s black and white photography can be seen at My Darkness To Light
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