PureInsight | September 19, 2005
[PureInsight.org] In Chinese Wushu (Martial Arts) circles, there is a saying "Practicing the skill without cultivating the energy, one will have nothing in the end."
Swordsmen in ancient China not only practiced the skill of martial arts but also cultivated their minds. Top swordsman's skills often come from the cultivation of one's xinxing (mind/nature/ethics/morals); the higher one's xinxing, the more supernatural skills one develops with one's sword. Since the cultivation of xinxing is harder to accomplish than developing skill with a sword, a person with a perverted or unstable state of mind not only cannot develop supernatural powers. It is also possible that he might develop psychological problems, manifesting in lack of self-control over his emotions, and thus there is no way he can win in a battle.
There was a famous English swordsman centuries ago. He had been fighting with an enemy for more than 30 years but the fighting always ended in ties. One day his adversary suddenly fell off the horse. The English swordsman took the opportunity to jump on top of his enemy and could have killed his enemy easily. The enemy spat in the Englishman's face. The Englishman immediately got up and told his enemy, "You get up. We can fight tomorrow!" The enemy was stunned; he didn't know why the Englishman had acted this way.
The Englishman said, "I have been cultivating myself for the past thirty years and striving for the state of fighting without anger in my heart. That's how I can keep winning without losing. However, the moment you spat at me, my mind became angry. If I killed you then, I would not able to find the feeling of victory anymore. So I hope to adjust my mentality and then start again tomorrow." The fighting, however, never started again. His enemy asked to become his student, and the Englishman's own skill with the sword became even more amazing after he was able to get rid of his anger. A righteous and calm mind rid him of his enemies and ensured victory in every competition.
In fact, isn't this a universal principle for all people? When someone is in great anger, his irritable mindset will manifest in an explosion or madness of temper and will make him lose the state of reason, which will further inhibit his wisdom and ability. Those traits will result in undesirable results. Only a virtuous, well-adjusted and calm mind is capable to fully exhibit one's wisdom. Showing a great deal of temper is just a sign of mental imbalance and incompetence. If a person can completely eliminate anger from his mindset, then that person is truly remarkable.
Translated from: http://www.zhengjian.org/zj/articles/2005/8/15/33452.html