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Sword fighting and life by Jim Gasser

Started by Don Quixote, April 01, 2009, 07:25:09 PM

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Don Quixote

This was written by Jim just before his untimely passing, I hope Barbarian Battles doesn't mind my repost but I thought this was profund and should be shared:

Sword fighting and Life by Jim Gasser

Most Warriors are made.
Some are born.
A few have always known

Sword fighting and life, while on the surface appearing diametrically opposed, are in fact, parallel paths. Sword fighting in its purest form is the taking of life. There was no other reason to pick up a sword. Through the Path of the Sword we discover the true Path of Life. We slice away at the very layers that cloud our true purpose-Enlightenment. The principles and foundations of sword fighting are congruent with those of life.

Why does the sword feel so natural within our grasp? It is a symbol, a reminder of our past. Today, the sword is not the sword of the past, an instrument of death; the sword has become a tool for our enlightenment.

With the correct mind, any endeavor or action can lead to enlightenment.

The style that I pursue is one of basics and practicality. I have found it is best to embrace simplicity as the cornerstone of sword fighting and life.

We fight with swords because it is who we once were and will ultimately define who we become.

Fighting is a progression and must be approached as such. To leap over or ignore the fundamentals will result in weakness, false hope, and ultimately defeat. Fighting is form following function. No superfluous, wasted movements. Our movements are timeless. They have always been.

We must continue to question the strength and integrity of the bridge, until one has crossed over it and come back.

I often speak of what lies within us as something eternal. I believe that our concept of death occurs as we conceive it. Under no circumstances do I think that we truly know and understand the concept, which we call death. Until one has crossed over the bridge and come back, it is nothing but conjecture.

(It is my theory that God would not allow us to have this insight until we have evolved enough to grasp it. At this point in our existence, if there were complete certainty as to the concept of afterlife and a closer relationship with God, why would we choose to remain in this life? Our evolution would never occur if we walked like lemmings into the water.)

Anyone can pick up a sword and swing it. Sword fighting by its very nature embraces simplicity. A child can grasp a sword and begin the dance. As we grow older, we forget these deep- rooted, natural movements. The timeless, simplicity of the sword's lesson is replaced by the complexity of life. We have become distracted by the race.


Oh, hey there Quixote. Many apologies for not answering this post until now. I just never seem to check the chivalry forum for whatever reason. Anyway, Jim was indeed a dear friend of mine and my most cherished mentor. I know you as an avid KC rennie, I see you at faire often, so it doesn't surprise me that you too became close to Jim. He was just a hard person to miss. Except for now, I guess. I miss him all the time. But life goes on, and we barbarians are still fighting a strong as ever. Thank you, many prayers for Jim, and may Valhalla be forever honored with his presence.