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Grasshopper, Be Like A Tree

The sixth color code is Green: “Persistence.” Like a green plant or tree, one does not visually see them grow from day to day, but over weeks, months and years their continuous, persistent effort to reach the sky is evident. In our kung fu classes we have a similar ideal for “how” to train. This training code says, “7 times down; 8 times up.” It is the idea that you keep getting off the floor when you fall, dust off your pants and try again. And again. And again. And again. In fact you plan ahead for any future failures by getting up “the 8th time” — one more than the expected falls.

This is a good example of persistence. I remember trying to learn to juggle when I was a teen (I bought The Idiot’s Guide to Juggling). At first ball bags were flying all over the place. But over the next 2 hours I got the basic 3 ball juggle down and seldom dropped them. After 10 minutes I could have given up. But I persisted. I even learned to do tricks like behind my back and through my legs and several others. They all took practice. They took weeks of trying. Persistence.

In life we often look for short cuts, but there are no short cuts to important qualities like love and honor and respect and faith and courage (our earlier color codes). Doing them once hardly makes them a quality in our life we can count on. Rather it’s the persistent practice of these virtues that in-grain them in our souls and make them strong. So now you can see why persistence is the next stage – rinse and repeat those earlier codes – until you reach the next code “Brown” – proficiency (our idea of perfection).

At this point of six levels of Pai Lum Kung Fu you should have seen growth like a tree in your kung fu abilities and skills – and hopefully in many of these virtues we extol. But if you don’t see everything the way you like, no worries, just apply a little more persistence.

December 2, 2017 | Blog Posts | 0