I got the chance to watch Kung Fu Panda, again, and The Sorcerer’s Apprentice last night. Its a nice little piece of brain candy to relax and just enjoy. However, it did get me thinking.

(Kung Fu Panda) At the end, it was discovered that the secret Dragon scroll had no writing and there was no secret ingredient in the “Secret Ingredient” noodle soup. (The Sorcerer’s Apprentice) Doing magic without a ring would be reaching the ultimate level. Now I will admit to being a bit “thick” at times (afterall, I am just a male), but after many years of training in the martial arts I finally understood the concept.

Kung Fu Panda 3

Yeah, I know that it seems pretty obvious but the concept goes deeper than “Believe in yourself”. There are almost countless stories, movies and cartoons that show the benefits of believeing in yourself. Most of them could also qualify as “Hero myths” (see Joseph Campbell writings). The Hero is given a task to accomplish and a journey to get there.

During these journeys, the Hero must learn what needs to be done and how to do it in order to be successful. He must TRAIN. This is the part that gets overlooked. You become amazed and enthralled at the skills developed to achieve the goal. The downfall is that it gives the illusion that the skills and knowledge…and power…can be attained through short intensive training.

Sadly, the time it takes to train completely is a lifetime. This means that all those who are teaching should still be training. Teaching is only another method of training (integrating intellectual & academic). Skills will become usable, some even amazing, before the end of your lifetime but the real knowledge will take the whole time.

The connection between the movies and martial arts finally made sense when I heard the voice Master Kim Jeong Woo (Haidong Gumdo). During the recent Master’s training I was able to attend, I had worked on a form and had gone to make some notes on it. Master Kim moved to the next portion of his lesson plan. I was intent on writing things down before I forgot and got called on it. As we lined up to bow out, he said “It is good to write things down but train first.”

So I leave with…are you still training?