In the Temple Elements of Jiin Senshi Do, we train in three overlapping training arenas, what I call The Training Trinity: Martial Arts Practice, Holistic Life Discipline, and Meditative Prayer.

Martial Arts Practice: Training should always begin with the body. Through physical training, we attune to our senses and learn how to move in more healthy, sustainable ways. From there, we learn to move often and progress to moving as often and in as many ways as we can. The practice of martial arts is first and foremost a practice of expressing the human body. While all martial arts are stylized in combat forms, they are, nonetheless, rooted in the ancient arts of moving and blending healthily with nature—one’s own as well as that in which all life exists, grows, struggles, and thrives. Everyone, even the elderly, can benefit from martial arts practice. At Temple Martial Arts Training, we take a balanced, organic approach to martial arts practice.

Holistic Discipline/Mind-body Mastery: As training progresses, it becomes imperative to look at all aspects of our lives. Here we begin to clear out old ways of thinking and pursue habits that honor God and the temple He created us to be. While such training is largely ascetic in nature, it is driven principally by the desire to find “the middle ways” of selflessness and non-attachment, and of becoming that which we are doing in the moment. While a human being is, anthropologically, comprised of a material and immaterial part, he (or she) is also an event. A holistically disciplined person doesn’t just live in the moment; he becomes it.

Meditative Prayer/Prayerful Meditation: Training is, first and foremost, a work of prayer. As “temple warriors-in-training,” everything we do is pursued mindfully through deep connection with God Almighty, ourselves, other people, and even nature. Through the practices of meditative prayer (or prayerful meditation), we get to know God and ourselves. By that, I mean, we get to experience our humanity, both individually and corporately, as it is known actively and intimately and loved through and through by God. In this connection with the Divine, this communion of wills, God invites us to live into our belovedness and fundamental goodness as His sons and daughters. These inherent qualities are intended to leaven every aspect of our lives… from how we live, to how we move, to how we operate interdependently as valued members of the human family.