Monday, July 03, 2017

Subtle Warrior - the history begins

Way back in 2000, when I stepped away from a "Traditional/Classical" martial art that I had been a part of for 18 years, I had no idea where my path would lead. All I knew was that I was done with the arts. What good was it if 'it' it didn't keep me safe enough when I needed to defend?

That perspective was wrong. 'It' wasn't what failed in my defense. The instructor failed. Like many others in the "Traditional/Classical" arts, they are the all-knowing... 'This way and ONLY this way'. I followed blindly. All the physical stuff was great, many skills were incorporated into all that physical. In fact, it was all those skills that opened soooo many doors for me. For that alone, I can never be grateful enough. So even though I had no idea where my path would take me, the training and the skills set acquired over those 18 years has opened doors from one coast to the other, and border to border to train with some incredible people. 

My path, right after I left the arts, brought me to Upaya Zen Center. A Buddhist Monastery.  Unbelievable. One of the summers there I was required to attend a Women's Retreat where I met some incredible people. I think of them often still to this day. It is from that retreat I decided I wanted to teach women how to defend. I knew the 'martial art' I had learned was not the way to go about it, but I did not know anything more than that. 

Long story shorter... I found myself in North Carolina getting a certification with the Modern Warrior(c) crew at a Women's Self Defense Conference. They got me going in the right direction and relayed to me the vital particulars that I was ignorant of. After that first seminar, I had a direction I wanted to go and a rough draft of a map. Coming up with a name for my 'business' was a long process. 

In 2004 the name came to me: Subtle Warrior

  subtle   |ˈsətl|   adjective    (esp. of a change or distinction) so delicate or precise as to be difficult to analyze or describe: his    language expresses rich and subtle meanings.        • (of a mixture or effect) delicately complex and understated:subtle lighting.        • making use of clever and indirect methods to achieve something: he tried a more subtle    approach.        • capable of making fine distinctions: a subtle mind.        • arranged in an ingenious and elaborate way.        • archaic crafty; cunning.

I felt this moniker for my business was fitting for what my goals were. Woman are true warriors. How many women do we know who are so strong and resilient, who have overcome some amazing obstacles and constantly understate their grit. They are Subtle Warriors. 

For each of us who carry loads and burdens that others cannot see; who go fourth and present ourselves as consistent and relentless in our everyday interactions for the sake of others. Presenting a steady, stable environment so that others may know there is, and can be, a place of stability. Which gives a sense of hope and calm. 

The violence we face as humanity is not new. And there are places that are worse than others, evils that cannot be grasped, unless you've been there. Even knowing someone who has been there, doesn't offer the reality of it. Be thankful for that. I have met and trained with some very dangerous, interesting people and the information was profoundly disturbing. 

The Subtle Warrior is anyone who knows challenges; who goes about their days doing what has to be done despite of the battles they face internally and elsewhere in their lives. The caregiver that goes to the store or to church and is pleasant and lighthearted to others. The woman whose just found out she has a cancer battle to fight, and yet goes to work and maintains the usual schedule, for the sake of consistency. How about the parent who struggles with doing the best she can, keeping a positive attitude when the world seem to be adamant at keeping her down. Then there's all the ladies of all ages who feel 'judged', 'inadequate', 'stupid', 'fat', 'ugly', 'not good enough'... or whatever else their 'self' constantly whispers within. All warriors. Subtly going through their conflicts, their scrimmages, their day to day struggles, non-stop. Everyday. 

The Subtle Warrior is all women, all ladies of all ages, we know the fight so well, so intimately that many time we are not even aware of how fierce we fight it.  💖

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