We have done a whole lot apart –and a whole lot together. We’ve rock-climbed at ZUMA Beach in Malibu while whales and dolphins played nearby; we’ve performed with the West Coast Demo Team, trained with Ernie Reyes, Sr. and Frank Shamrock, David Meyer, Troy Dorsey, BJ Penn. We’ve fire-walked, backpacked, built houses, fallen off roofs, walked in Martin Luther King’s footsteps, sat together in the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama (four young girls died there September 15, 1963, victims of a bomb), toured and even worked on homes inspired by the late, great architect and teacher, Samuel Mockbee.
The names of the people, their determination, their dream and ambitions, their smiles…they all flash thru my head like a slide show: Mike Valentine, Karen, Pat Hoffman, Lance, Rob, Michael,
The UBBT’s ideas, which are actually made up of other people’s ideas, from King to Rhee to Reyes to Lee to Uyeshiba to Kano to Homma to Hahn to (Name your favorite hero/thinker here), are meant to transcend the martial arts, the dojo, the style, the system, the country of origin, and anything that limits, constrains, or separa
I ask YOU, now, yes…you…to contribute your time and energy in this endeavor, this personal journey of yours. I ask you to invest in your training with rugged determination and unbelievable consistency.
Do it by making tomorrow count. Listen, read, learn, eat like a champion, engage each person as if he or she were THE MASTER (of all masters) –and shed some of the weight, the baggage, the anger, frustration, etc…you might be carrying around. Use the UBBT as a tool for personal transformation –and when you work on your self, it is reflected in everything around you –and it often becomes a tool for family, relationship, business, and community transformation.
Welcome to the Ultimate Black Belt Test, something on the Internet, something that only really exists in the minds of its participants. Something that isn’t meant to be just a brand name –but a revolution in thinking and action for a bunch of people who, in the past, have focused primarily on their own physical skills, competition, and business. All those things have their value, but the new mission is to take the martial arts “out of the dojo and into the world.” And, as Aikido Master Goku Homma pointed out, “My life is my dojo.”