Friday, 6 June 2008

Students becoming Masters

Someone new to martial arts first goes to class with the hope of learning something new. Obviously they wish to be taught by the master of the school. Being taught a technique by one of the schools students, which sometimes happens, could result in the newcomer never coming back. After all, you want to be taught by the master, not the student. But when does the student start being called the master. And what must happen for him/her to be given this special title?

Does the student after years of training suddenly wake up one morning and think “I shall regard myself as a master from now on” or maybe he/she has to win a certain amount of fights or tournaments. Someone who is successful in competition with others has a lot to be proud of. Training hard for them and coming out on top over others who wish the victory as much as the winner, is a great achievement but does not necessarily make them a master.

Fedor Emilianenko is probably seen as one of the greatest ever MMA fighters and maybe has earnt the right to be called a master, but how about when he is in front of his coaches. Would he then be seen as the student and his coaches seen as masters or would they all be seen as masters.

Rickson Gracie is seen by some as the ultimate master of Jiu Jitsu. His won countless amounts of fights. So could Rickson teach someone how to be gracious in defeat? Probably not, as he has never lost! If someone has had 100 fights without winning a single one on the other hand, they maybe could teach this and could be seen as a master in it.

Maybe the right thought would be that a master is someone who can pass on knowledge and a student is someone who can learn that passed knowledge. This would make everyone masters AND students. No one is perfect but everyone has something that they can pass on, it just so happens that some have more to pass on than others.


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