In my mind’s eye I can see a martial arts association, a group of people, who represent the most extraordinary ideas, who thru vision and commitment and action, build a portfolio of accomplishments, thru their own actions and the actions of those they influence, that represent the most enlightened thinking, that represents grass-roots activism around the so many things that truly matter in today’s world, things that represent compassion, engagement, awareness, simplicity, and leadership.
It’s beyond business, it’s beyond simply “getting the gross up,’ it’s beyond the style or system taught, it’s beyond the program, the product, the marketing plan, the phone call, the intro, and the enrollment. All those things are the socks, shoes, pants, and shirts of the work, but they don’t contain the spirit of the work, nor the drive, the purpose, the passion, or the mission.
Imagine a “thing” you “join” that, before enrollment, you understood that this thing was unlike any other thing, that it would require you to change your game, dramatically; that your own thinking, your diet, your behavior, what you consume, what you produce, your mission, all of it –would have to be taken to a new place, that personal mastery, dealing with all the demons and filling as many of the gaps as you were able to perceive, was step 1. Imagine a group you joined where the expectations were that you would stand to represent, in all of your actions, the best of the best of the best any martial arts teacher, any simple human being could be, could create, could manifest, could teach, could champion.
What a thing that would be. That would be The 100. Method.
The phone call, the franchise concept, the system, the ad copy, the tournament, the entire mechanics of school management, the ins and outs of the industry are, to me, something that is learned quickly and put to work with discipline and consistency. It’s not the work. The work is redesigning the mission of the martial arts teacher, his/her role in a community, in the world. The work is in collecting evidence that we are, indeed, something worthwhile and useful and beautifully valuable.
The work is to have people come to a martial arts school with an expectation of transformation –and that the school does, on every level it’s capable, deliver on that promise –physically, mentally, emotionally, socially, spiritually. So, step # 1 is to raise, cultivate, and encourage teachers who are living examples of extraordinary thinking –and action.
A school and what it produces is only limited by the intelligence, the vision, the experience, and the sense of mission of the teacher and his/her helpers.
My efforts with this idea, “The 100.” is that at least 100 martial arts teachers, of all the thousands out there, would come together in some (or many) meaningful ways, and stand to represent something that is completely extraordinary, that is so good, so sound, so wholesome, so back-to-the-core, that these 100 people would each influence 100 others –and that this work, before it was over, became a significant influence in how the next generation of martial arts teachers affected the world.