It happened to me!

A young pws, Vinay, came to visit me from eastern UP in 2014. I took him to some nearby shops for voluntary stammering. Then, we came home and had a cup of tea in the back lawn. He was still trembly! It was such a big shock for him. I brought out an old medal – just gold polish, nothing expensive- and put it round his neck with a big smile: This is in recognition of what you did today! It was pure courage!

Vinay politely declined but I insisted. And then on being inquired, I told him the story about this medal.

When I was 43 or so, I joined a local dojo and began to learn Gojuryu Karate, under a very able trainer- Mr B S Rai. He was ten years younger than me but very wise. He kept pushing me to fight better students in the dojo. I kept striving to do better despite my age. Once he suggested: why don’t you go for championships? I said, how does one fight with glasses on? I had minus five power in both eyes. He casually responded: Don’t worry, I will tell you.

Five years passed and I received my black belt. Then one day he said: Come to Nahan for the regional inter-style competition. I decided to trust his judgement. Even with glasses off, I could see enough and finally, martial arts was all about spatial awareness of your own body parts and those of your opponent – like seeing without eyes.

Till third round, our points were equal. The opponent was a young Himachali, a few inches taller. I was exhausted and asking myself deprecatingly: what are you trying to prove at 48? What is this madness?

Another thought surfaced, like a bubble rising from the bottom of a still pond: What fight can you put up, with just one hand? The fact was – I was being very defensive with one of my arms always guarding my face and upper body. Suddenly, as the bell rang for the last round, I stepped into a bright space of fearlessness. I punched with both hands, ignoring my fears…

Next, I felt that someone had lifted me up in a huge embrace. I had won the match point! It was Mr B S Rai who had entered the ring and lifted me up in his arms and went around shouting happily.

I realised that this championship- and the medal- was not a big deal but the lesson (it was like a Bardo moment) stayed with me for the rest of my life.

And the lesson is simple: Be Fearless. This is the only way to LIVE. Everything else is a compromise and unworthy of the glorious Self that we are. Losing and winning is nothing. Being fearless and courageous is everything.

Since then, I have tried that mindset on quite a few occasions – on the work front, in personal life, relationships, trekking – and been rewarded with unexpected joys and insights.

If anyone cares to listen and follow: Please try this maha-technique: be fearless.

Post Author: Sachin

4 thoughts on “It happened to me!

    Ravi Nigam

    (January 2, 2022 - 12:02 pm)

    Awesome … I didn’t know about your winning that big match at the age of 43 years old. QUITE MOTIVATIONAL FOR ME…..

    Karthik Rajagopalan

    (January 8, 2022 - 9:21 pm)

    Dear Sachin,

    Awesome as usual. You have time and again shown that age is not a boundary to set goals and achieve them. With this share, I got to know that you are a black belt holder. Need to be little careful next time… Just kidding 🙂

    Great Job in not giving up and moreover trusting your coach to perform what he said. I remember the old saying, The journey towards your goal might be rough, but the destination is always awesome. You sharing proved that. And congrats once again on winning that award.

    Abhishek Kumar

    (January 24, 2022 - 7:09 am)

    Wonderful sharing sir


    (February 6, 2022 - 11:17 am)

    nice write up sir

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