There are two kinds of self-defence:
1) First teaches you to be more aggressive & violent – it feeds your dark side,
2) The other makes you calm & teaches you to control your anger, ability to harmonise – they support your humanity.
Which one is more effective?
Somebody says: anger & ‘seeing red’ gives you unbelievable power, tenses up your body & makes you ready to fight. That’s true. However:
1) Aggressive behaviour usually makes conflict worse. The opponent could take it like a challenge to fight, or even worse: he could feel in danger (he could strike from fear).
The most frequent reason for fighting is probably antagonistic posture, on the contrary: the best tactics how to avoid the fight is to send a positive signal to the potential aggressor. The most attacks don’t start suddenly in dark alley, but in or in front of pubs & clubs.
2) Aggressive behaviour turns you to be an attacker (witnesses usually remember who acted more aggressively, not who started it, aggressive behaviour could be also seen on CCTV), which can get you in a lot of trouble after the fight.
You are a human being, its better to smile & have friendly body language to control him than to be foaming from the mouth, crushing his Adam’s apple.
3) Aggression tenses you up, but a relaxed body is more dynamic & sensitive & it also absorbs the strike better (minimalizes damage of strike).
Undesirable tension wastes your energy – it burns your oxygen (which you need for your muscles & brain).
4) Behind aggression is often a fear which can support an aggressor’s decision to strike.
5) Anger usually hugely increases your mistakes (which can be lethal for you). Anger also leads you to do things which you normally wouldn’t do & which you may bitterly regret later.
6) And finally: you don’t need to be angry to get power of an adrenalin rush.
Simply say: tension & aggressive behaviour is for self-defence counterproductive – it makes your situation worse.
Anyway, do you know what gives you more power than anger or fear?
Belief that you fight for the right things.
Belief that you are the right one; a human being, a non-violent person (without intention to injure or kill).
‘Be kind’ are the words that my Systema master Vladimir Vasiliev repeats quite often..
He is teaching us to be Peaceful Warriors*.
I feel that I am training the same lineage of Russian warriors system as Dan’s Millman’s Socrates*..
When my Facebook friend (another Systema master) Georgy Funtikov sent me a simple message: ‘быть добру’ – ‘to be good’, it ‘clicked’ in my head..
the first Systema principle is: to be good.
It doesn’t mean just in the fight. It means to be good in your whole life!
To be helpful – don’t be obstructive.
Bad people try to convince us that it’s normal to be aggressive, that the human heart is naturally bad.
Is it really like this..?
Look into your heart..
What do you see..??
A useful nice person or a bad one..?