Archive for the ‘Squirrels’ category

Physical Training is Observing Reality

July 28, 2013

If you wonder what squirrels could possibly have to do with Martial Arts, consider this quote by Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim:

“Even if there were no martial arts systems in existence, ,we could still learn much about the valuable trains developed by these systems, like survival, self-defense, courage, discipline, and patience, just by watching nature.  It’s not by accident that many martial art forms incorporate the qualities of animals: the tiger, eagle, crane, bear, turtle, monkey.  The original martial arts masters observed valuable traits in these and other animals, then imitated them to extend their fighting skills.”

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Not much in this picture other than dirt and a rusty pipe, right?  Well, on closer look

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you’ll see a very smart animal under cover.  Or shall we say, “in cover.”

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And if you are the main food for this highly skilled hunter

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You would look for cover too!

For both, hunter and hunted, it’s a matter of survival.  But Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim‘s words apply to both sides:

“Now is all there is, therefore, any blow coming to you, or any blow needed to strike at your opponent, can be known or felt or sensed now.  This foreknowledge or ability to sense this is the best offense and defense you can have and is the reward for being disciplined to live only in the NOW, the only reality.”  (Seven Steps to Inner Power, page 84)

So you see, there is much to learn from even squirrels, out there, in the wild!

Jung SuWon-imals – where aaaaaaaaaaare you?

November 15, 2008


It’s been a while since I have posted and for a good reason.  I haven’t seen any of our Jung SuWon-imals in the yard lately!  Ferdinand and his kin don’t come around much anymore – they stay outside the yard, and although they are congregating in amazing numbers – in flocks of 50 or more – they don’t come so near anymore.  Maybe there isn’t enough food anymore for them to make it worthwhile….

I haven’t seen Sam the squirrel lately either.  I hear that squirrels semi-hibernate throughout the winter months, so maybe that is what he is doing.  I guess I better keep the walnuts I have been getting for him for when he shows up again….

This situation reminds of one of my favorite quotes in “The Silent Master”, written by Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim, founder of Jung Suwon Martial Arts:

“To me, one of the most perfect pictures of freedom is nature in the wild.  Birds are free to fly wherever their instincts take them, to the highest mountain or to the water’s edge.  Bears, rabbits, deer, creatures of all names and sizes freely roam the land, each finding their food and shelter in their own individual  way. Animals freely express their unique individuality.  No animal tries to be like another.  Mountain lions don’t try to live like deer or eat their food.  Rabbits don’t try to hibernate like bears.  All animals take their individuality for granted, “trusting” that nature provides everything necessary to fulfill their every need.  And the elements of nature are also fee and joyous, expressing and contributing their gifts abundantly.  The sun shines faithfully and warmly no matter what happens on the planet below. Rivers flow through their native surroundings bringing food for life. And beauty if everywhere.  The clouds, winds, rainbows, butterflies, light filtered through the forest trees – all come together in a beautiful picture of harmony.

You are a part of all this!  Freedom, beauty, and originality for you is exactly the same as for nature’s beings and elements.  You are an original!”  (The Silent Master, page 140)

Jung SuWon-imal Sophie is really Sam!

November 1, 2008

Yes, I admit to it.  I was wrong, and made a mistake.  Cute little Jung SuWon-imal squirrel Sophie is actually a boy squirrel.  Of course, once I mentioned this fact to some family member, immediately they ask me:  So how do you know?

Well, er, uhm, you see, they don’t wear clothes!  One day, who I thought was Sophie but turned out to be Sam, came right up to the sliding glass door with an acorn, sat down and proceeded to eat it with gusto.  He must not have been able to see inside the window, because on the other side of the glass, less than 2 feet away, there I was, enjoying watching him eat.  If the glass hadn’t been there, I could have reached out and touched him.  And being so close, and him not wearing any pants, well, what can I say…..

This whole episode reminded me of on of my favorite teachings of my Martial Arts teacher, Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim.  “Learn from your mistakes!”  Let me quote from her book, “Seven Steps to Inner Power.”

“Willingness to learn from your mistakes is the backbone to everything that can be considered progress.  How many mistakes do you think Alexander Graham Bell made in inventing the first telephone that conncted one room in his house to another?  Now telephone technology is developing that allows us to see the person you are speaking with on the other side of the globe.  How many mistakes did the engineers make while developing this technology?  Who cares?  The object is to succeed, not to count your mistakes.

Mistakes are also essential to your progress.  The minute you decide to achieve a goal that’s important to you, you will make mistakes.  How did we humans get the idea that to be perfect we couldn’t make mistakes?  Never making a mistake does not make us perfect.  Never repeating a mistake (after we learn from it) is as perfect as we need to be.

Imagine the freedom you’ll feel when you don’t have to worry about defending or hiding your mistakes.  Experience the increased energy that comes form this freedom!  Welcome your mistakes into your consciousness as your friends and teachers!” (Seven Steps to Inner Power, page 26)

Jung SuWon warriors come in all sizes and shapes: introducing Sophie

October 15, 2008

You have already caught a glimpse or two of Sophie in my previous posts.  But while I thought she was very shy, I found out she is really inquisitive, bold, and downright friendly – as long as she is in her own environment – up in the trees. 

She does like to hang out with the turkey family and especially with Ferdinand, but she does not feel all too comfortable on the ground – especially out on the lawn.  She only goes there with the turkeys, and stays in their midst.  But she really shows her spunk up in “her” oak tree. 

Sophie makes me think about Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim’s teachings – You are one of a kind!  And of course “Be an Original – don’t be a copy!”  See, while Sophie likes being with the turkeys, she is not trying to be one, or to even be like one.  She knows her strengths and weaknesses and acts accordingly. 

Join me and watch what happened out there, in the (really not so) wild….

Jung SuWon warrior animals: Be true to Yourself

October 6, 2008

I have been watching Ferdinand and his family a lot – since they come right into my yard – and their new friend Sophie, who, by the way, lives in my yard. 

Even though they like to hang out together, I noticed that Sophie only stays with Ferdinand in a certain areas of the yard, but doesn’t follow him anywhere else.  This puzzled me, since they seemed to enjoy  each other’s company.  But then I realized:  Ferdinand and his family can fly, but Sophie cannot!  The only way she can escape from danger, is to climb up a tree, or structure!  And that is why they are always together under the oak trees! 

Even animals know what Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim is teaching at Jung SuWon:  be true to your self.  Be who you are!  Don’t try to be someone else!  A dolphin is beautiful in his own right and has many great qualities, but it will never be an eagle.  Likewise, the eagly is awe inspiring and has his own excellent qualities, but he would not do well in the water.  And so the dolphin should be the best dolphin he can be, and the eagle also needs to remain an eagly and not try to be a dolphin.

So, Ferdinand will always be a turkey and he can – and should – fly when necessary.  Sophie, as a squirrel – will never be able to fly, and so will always need to stay around climbable structures.  And while they are so different, nevertheless they get along well together in the small area that they can be together.

As Grandmaster Kim always reminds us, there is so much we can learn from animals, out there, in the wild….

Jung SuWon in the wild – Ferdinand the turkey has a new friend: Sophie the squirrel

October 2, 2008

Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim of Jung SuWon has faced a lot of prejudice in her life.  Because she didn’t fit in, she was treated like a disease.  She was resented because she was a girl, as firstborn child, a total no-no in the Korean society in those days.  Then, as if that wasn’t enough, she wanted to train in the Martial Arts, and again, nothing but prejudice and rejection.

After she finally started training and achieved her highest goals, becoming a Grandmaster, she still had to face terrible prejudice – as a brand new arrival in the USA, she faced racial prejudice of incredible proportions.  Her school was burned down, landlords refused to rent to her, and people simply didn’t trust her, since she was from an oriental country.  She came to the USA in the late sixties, during the height of the Vietnamese war, and in rural Vermont people simply didn’t care to differentiate between different Asian countries.  She was called all sorts of racial, degrading names. 

Now, in California, she teaches that we are all one of a kind, and that we need to look beyond the color of skin, or any other physical appearance.  God made us all the way we are, and we need to appreciate this, and accept one another.

Animals know this too, and in this little short video you can see Ferdinand the turkey with his family, with Sophie, the squirrel.  Seems like she is still a bit shy and the turkeys still don’t quite know what to make of her, but they all love to eat the new acorns, and there are plenty of them to go around.  Later on I saw Sophie still moving with the turkey family, and spending the day with them. 

Here is what happened out there, in the wild….