02 February 2008

Appreciate, before it's too late

Silat. Pencak. Gayung. Call it what you want, there’s just no denying that all of these are a part of the whole. Melayu, Bugis, Sunda, Minang, Mendeleng. They’re just names to describe a particular origin. But when you strip away the black cloth or gold-threaded ornamentation, the palace or peasant origins, the aggressive striking or undulating gestures, you’re left with nothing but a man.

A man who shoulders the heavy burden of caring for his family, his nation and his way of life. Of what use is self-defence if not to defend these? Of what import is combat if not to combat evil? Of what worth is life if not to sacrifice for worthwhile ideals? These are the true reasons an martial art is born, to champion the cause of truth, to empower the weak of ways and to preserve the tranquility of peace.

And yet, there are those in this world who would betray those who imparted those values, those martial arts to them. They seek benefit from the glow that this virtuous expression of the human soul provides. For self-interest, they would auction off what pride they had left to the highest bidder to create mindless, emotionless yes-men whose only task in life is to revere them.

This post is dedicated to the masters who have spent their lives in anonymity, suffering in silence as their ‘students’ race on, never to look back. If they did, they would see that the humble fountain from which they drank their fill has now dried up for lack of kindness.
SILAT MELAYU: THE BLOG weeps for those forgotten ones. The Living Treasures who have now left us, and those who are still unappreciated amongst us. Who are they? They are the elders. He might be that lonely man in your village waiting for someone to ask what he knows, or the bench potato who decides to die with his knowledge rather than sell them meagerly to ungrateful offspring. They have all been forcibly retired from their love.
It is ironic then, that the power, speed and grace of Silat pales in comparison with the poison of its greatest enemy. Apathy. Have you appreciated your Living Treasure today? Salam persilatan!
Original Article by Mohd Nadzrin Wahab

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