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Sometimes I Need to Be a White Belt

You have to give a lot of credit to our White Belts. They have had the vision and determination to try something new in life – something challenging both physically and mentally. It also puts their spirits to the test to learn a new self-discipline – all those bows and protocols, standing at attention, breaking when they enter the kwoon (school), breaking to teachers, showing energy. They have to learn where to be in line, when to be at class; they have to learn all new titles for their teachers and themselves, not to mention the new names of all the students, their Chinese numbers, and new codes and creeds. And of course there is all that martial art material — all the new techniques to learn and the new muscles one must employ. On top of all this they are starting at the bottom of the kung fu “food” chain. Everyone else has achieved ranking so they line up last and bow the lowest. Yes, give all our White belts a hand for their faith and courage.

That is why the key idea and word for White Belt is faith. Instead of staying in their normal life routine they have sought something different by hoping for something they don’t have. They got out of their sofa or comfortable chair for exercise, learning and challenge. And to achieve the yellow belt takes a lot of courage to go through the hardships and challenges of kung fu training that we have mentioned. One has to wonder why they go through all this trouble.

Do you remember starting something really different and/or new? Maybe music lessons, a new sport, a new place to live or a new group to join. It took courage and commitment to see it through. You “lived” life though and probably were quite proud of yourself for the effort. From time to time we all need to break out of comfortable living and start something new. We need to be white belts again. We grow this way; we expand our horizons, we live again – whether we like the new thing or not. Let’s keep being white belts throughout our lives from time to time.

-Sigung Steve Jungmann
Pai Xeung Lum

July 2, 2017 | Blog Posts | Comments Off on Sometimes I Need to Be a White Belt

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