The Power of Community


  These are challenging times. People seem divided across so many lines, and isolation is the result. At the deepest level, all of us crave to feel part of something larger than ourselves, something that unites us and makes our problems seem small while making our purpose large. When we have an opportunity to broaden our focus away from ourselves and onto others, things seem more manageable and life more fulfilling. We all live in community - family, church, workplace, the city we live in, and the communities we choose to join later in life. 

  In my own case, I have found through the years that my Martial Arts family has met this need in my life in a very unique way. We come together to develop ourselves physically, mentally and in some ways spiritually....regardless of our race, creed, politics or religion. It allows us to connect in a way that brings our best qualities to the forefront. We cooperate, sweat, smile and learn. These lessons are as true for the young athlete as they are for the 48 year old mother of four. They shine in the lives of children as well as my students in their 80's ( I have a few!)

  I've often told my students that some of my best memories over the past 40 years of training in the martial arts were not just the training times, but also the talking times after class. I have met so many unique people who in their own lives are Masters of different kinds - Doctors, Lawyers, Teachers, Skilled Laborers and homemakers. They form the backbone of El Paso Kung Fu, as do the kids who each bring life and hope to the future of the Martial Arts.

  We are SO grateful TO and FOR our Martial Arts community. There have been days when I have felt discouraged, when life's pressures were taking their toll, but when I stepped into the school, and saw the smiling faces of our clan, I forgot what was bothering me.

  Remember the communities YOU are a part of, because lthey are medicine in these tough times. Go to share, to laugh, to learn and to give. It is a law of the universe - usually when we feel we are lacking something, giving it to others returns it back to us immediately in unexpected ways. Connection is life, and finding it through a mutual passion enriches us and brings health to our bones.

  So.... to those of you that are a part of our clan, our tribe, our community - Thank you for making our community richer and more vibrant by your presence.

  And for those of you looking for a community where you won't be judged by the things that don't matter.....come give us a try. It may be just what the Doctor ordered!

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Your PROUD Instructor


Sifu Paul

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