Every exercise in Systema is a mirror in which we can carefully examine ourselves from a new angle and see our flaws, shortcomings, tensions, and imperfections.
Systema exercises are not a way to learn anything new, but a means of internal change.
Systema Manual, Konstantin Komarov, p 23
How developed is your body? Or, in what condition have you kept your body? Neither old age nor traumas can be excuses or obstacles here. If your body was once formed and developed, but then you allowed it to degenerate, the fault lies squarely on your shoulders for squandering away the previous hard-earned investment in yourself. Systema Manual, Konstantin Komarov, p 215
If my body’s condition has deteriorated, I have squandered a valuable asset. The responsibility for keeping it up and maintaining it belonged solely to me, and I let it go. How is this similar to saving a bunch of money, and then wasting it all on junk? It all comes down to the failure to assume responsibility. Whether this happened by blaming someone else for my behavior, or by a lack of care about results and outcomes, the power to control the state of my body at the present moment was held by my self of the past. The state of my body in the future is a function of the state of my body now, and my future behaviors and actions. It will be evidence of the sum total of my life’s decisions and actions as of that moment. It always is.
Nothing stays the same for a day, an hour, or even a second. Night turns into day; the snows of winter bring forth the blossoms of spring. We are born and we die. Birth and death, decay and rebirth, the cycle of life – all is change. Change is life, and the ability to change is the essential element of growth. The freedom founded upon the realization and acceptance of this truth, that nothing stays the same, is the source of the power of true creativity.
Aikido and the Harmony of Nature, Mitsugi Saotome, p 23.
There is nothing so inconvenient and annoying as having the facts of reality contradict our preconceived notions of what is.
If someone’s ungrateful and you tell him he’s ungrateful, okay, you’ve called him a name. You haven’t solved anything.
Make the world a better place one person at a time by making yourself a better person.
Don’t confuse motion with progress. Action is not the same as productivity.
In a perfect world, everything is perfect. We have to deal with this one the best we can.
Everything rises and falls with self discipline. Our ability to keep promises we make with ourselves is what determines our life circumstances: whether we reach our potential, or continually struggle with the basics.
The direction of our lives is determined by the choices we make every day. They accumulate and add up to our ultimate destiny.