Title: Shijak: To Begin: A Modern Martial Arts Story
Author: Kathryn Yang
Publication Date: April 22, 2021
Synopsis: This is a story of traditional martial arts practice and philosophy in a modern day setting. Follow Daria and Dae Sung as their martial arts journeys converge under the tutelage of their Taekwondo teacher. Although the two come from different backgrounds and walk different paths, theirs is a story of training, fighting and self-discovery on the road to mastery and learning the true meaning of becoming a modern-day martial artist.
Synopsis: This book has been written for the benefit of those men and women who wish to practice martial art and particularly taekwondo in their later years. These are to me, the most remarkable people. I have known many. The wish to grow in the sense of being and to strive to find out about yourself within the crucible of martial art is a very high aim.
Most people at age of fifty or older are winding down their lives, becoming more sedentary and relinquishing their remaining potential to the relentless reclamation forces of Mother Nature. But to those who wish more from life and are striving to develop their individuality under the auspices of martial art, it is to you that speak. It is to you that I bow and acknowledge this high aim and the path that I have traveled.
Although this book is primarily for seniors who begin martial art late in life, the principles therein can be useful even for those who have practiced since childhood. For time passes through all of us and we are all are students in the aging process. In fact, this journey for seniors can be even more rewarding than for young people in the sense that it is much more difficult without youth. For instead of youth, seniors have to overcome two obstacles. The first obstacle is all of the difficulties that are associated with the practice of martial art. The second obstacle is all the difficulties that are associated with the aging process.
The contents of this book will reflect the uniqueness of my background in life. Being a pharmacist by profession, with degrees in biology and chemistry, I have devoted many years of service to the sick, the aged and dying. That has instilled in me a deep desire to understand the aging process and how to retard it. In this book, nutrition, injuries, training, yoga, meditation and many other aspects of martial art are explored from the perspective of achieving a major aim in one’s life. In addition, my participation in esoteric groups over many years has revealed to me inner knowledge of the laws of the body, mind, feelings and the importance of their continued growth.
To most people, the horizontal or external aspect of martial art is all they will ever know. Yet to a few, there is a great yearning to penetrate the external and seek the essence, or inner aspect. These people have a deep longing to understand their life and to grow as a human should, as a self-evolving creature. This is vertical development or self-individuality.
To be sure, there must be a balance between the outer and inner aspects. It is this balance I strive to elucidate in this book. It is my wish that martial art can penetrate your essence and open you up to knowledge and understanding of a deeper level of being.