The Fighter and The Warrior
by Pradeep Gidwani
When we come into this world as humans, we have no idea that life is a struggle. As we grow we learn how to struggle through observation and practice. We learn to be on guard and ready to fight for any reason. Fearing opposition becomes a normal reaction. Defending our beliefs becomes a virtue.
In bygone days, when kings assembled armies, they looked for both fighters and warriors. In fighters, they looked for great physical strength and a great tolerance for pain. The fighters were at the front lines and rushed into battle at the command of their leaders. Conditioning and practice made it unnecessary to think; they reacted immediately. Fighting was their pleasure and peace was an uncomfortable way of being.
The kings prized their warriors above the rest, however. Warriors were highly skilled in battle, but were different from fighters because they could see beyond fighting. They had freed themselves from blind struggle and journeyed within themselves to sense when to battle and when not to battle. They gave their best effort to each moment with the awareness that a greater force would determine the outcome.
Most of us exist in a reality that does not require physical battles. Nevertheless, we do take on the fears of our families and friends, and with fear comes the impulse to fight. Recognizing that the real war is being waged between the truth and all the lies we tell ourselves, we can cultivate a warrior’s sense by looking inward. Having unknowingly learned to struggle and become blind fighters, we may yet open our eyes and see that there are no more excuses to struggle.
Once we have freed ourselves from old responses of fear, we can approach each moment as it comes, aware of the force that already determined the outcome. As warriors, we listen and observe. As warriors, we stop fighting against life and learn to respond to life in each moment.