February 12, 2015 at 3:23 am #12941
Post subject: When you want to quit Post Posted: Mon Jul 09, 2007 12:10 pm
Joined: Sat Nov 26, 2005 6:58 pm
Found this posted by a 9th degree martial arts master and historian on another forum that I visit. It’s kinda long, but I found it inspirational and thought others might like it. Read if you have a minute:
“With the exception of that very gifted few, all of us have experienced one or more overly excessive butt kickings. That drubbing that makes us question if we really have what it takes for the martial arts…. We question if maybe it would be better if we just quit. It is at those very times that I always look to history for the answers.
On August 2, 218 B.C. a Roman army met the forces of one of the greatest military geniuses of all time, the mighty Hannibal, on the plains of Cannae. During the battle, which has become a byword for the flawless execution of military maneuver, a Roman army of 70,000 suffered the annihilation of 60,000 of its number in a classic double envelopment by the Carthaginian mastermind. As the ultimate outcome of the battle became evident, two legions cut their way out of the slaughter and took up position between the dreaded Hannibal and their beloved Rome, ready to make any last stand required. A 20 year old centurion was among them, Publius Scipio later to be known as Scipio Africanius.
These legionaries had performed exactly as Rome required. Roman Legionaries were not expected to “fight to the last man” but rather to extract what forces they could from a lost cause and further defend the Republic. Yet, these two legions, the Roman V and VI were banished for disgraceful conduct in the face of the enemy. These two legions were banished to Sicily from where they continually petitioned the Senate to allow them to return to Italy to face, and extract vengeance, from the dread Hannibal.
Scipio, as a Roman patrician, was above all this and was ultimately sent to Spain in command of an army, where he upset the balance of power by cunningly capturing the Carthaginian stronghold of New Carthage. Upon his return to Rome, Scipio immediately began to badger the Senate to give him the resources to invade Africa and attack Carthage on its home soil. Ultimately Scipio was bestowed a commission to invade Africa, but given only the disgraced V and VI Legions with which to accomplish this formidable feat.
The legionnaires of the fifth and sixth, stained with the disgrace of dishonor looked to Scipio for their redemption and Scipio made good. To Scipio these were not the disgraced and defeated of Cannae, but men who, by shear force of will and insurmountable courage slashed their way out of certain death and re-formed to stand between Rome and its ultimate destruction. Scipio honored their service, and the fifth and sixth Legions in turn gave him their utter devotion in the burning desire to eventually redeem themselves in the only honorable venue – against Hannibal on the field of battle.
In the year 202 B.C. Scipio and his devoted V and VI Legions met the forces of Hannibal on the plains of Zama in North Africa in a battle that has proven to be one of the most decisive in history. For many hours the issue was in question until finally the battle hardened veterans of the Roman fifth and sixth legions broke the center of the Carthaginian lines just as the Roman cavalry enveloped the flanks. The victory was decisive. The men of the fifth and sixth legions, through sheer force of personal will had been redeemed and proven to be the finest warriors in the world.
The lesson here is that we all take a beating, but we are never finished unless we DECIDE we are finished. I took a great many beatings from some of the greatest martial artists over the years, and I was delighted to return in like to many as I got older, smarter, stronger and more skilled. So in the words of Winston Churchill “Never give in. Never, never, never give in…except to convictions of honor and good sense”. Just keep training and never give up.
Just how we do it at SJ Kenpo.
Post subject: PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2007 2:09 pm
Joined: Fri Aug 18, 2006 11:35 am
interesting article, thanks
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