Sunday, January 01, 2006

evil martial arts

this is a post i started writing in january but for personal reasons couldn't finish until now:
during this season i usually take a few moments to reflect on the religious and unfortunately i ran across a website that disturbed me a bit. the site was claiming that the martial arts are evil, that the practice of the martial arts leads people to worship satan and that one cannot be a good person (much less a "good christian") if they are involved in the arts.
let me begin by saying that people who seek out the negative in anything will only ever find the negative in anything. trying to find reasons to hate things will only make it easier to hate everything and will only serve to separate you from what can make you happy.
next, let me say that the martial arts are certainly supported by the bible (if we can use the bible as a "christian" measuring stick).

God's Army
if we divide the words up and examine their roots, we can determine that martial (or military) arts (in this case practices or crafts) are at the foundation of christian relations with other nations. in fact, one of the titles of God mentioned many times in the old testament is "Lord of Hosts"-judges 20:23, 28, 35 (a host is an army). God directed His army, the israelites, to "ve, pues, y hiere a Amalec, y destruye todo lo que tiene..." 1 samuel 15:2-3. In this scripture we see that not only is it appropriate to defend yourself, but according to the christian religion, there are times when it is appropriate to attack and destroy an entire people.
However, is there any biblical evidence of people being trained to kill?

He that teacheth my hands to war
If we examine the biblical text, we see that on many occassions, God has granted men the ability (and responsibility) to do away with the enemies of Israel. When God detained the sun so that Joshua and his army could destroy the ammorites (joshua 10:12-13), that was a clear example of God helping man obtain an upper hand. When Jacob wrestled with an angel (the word means "messenger") we see that the messenger was privy to special techniques, such as touching the hollow of Jacob's thigh to cause the sinews to shrink (Genesis 32:22-32). Even so, what example more plain do we require than the praise david gave God in the psalm 144:1 "Bendito sea Jehova, mi roca, quien adiestra mis manos para la batalla, y mis dedos para la guerra..."?

what good is it?
so you're a buddhist, so you're a christian, so you're a muslim, who cares? what good does it do you or anyone else if you do not practice what you profess to believe? those who attack others for the beliefs of others are not fulfilling their own beliefs by trying to deny others theirs. instead, let us be doers of the word and not hearers only. let us become the people we want to be and do so with dignity and equality.