Alright, so my last question did not make much clarity on what I wanted to ask, so I will clarify here. I am not really atheistic but nontheistic. I am quite skeptical but I prefer to judge for myself. In this instance I am interested in East Asian martial arts: Ninjutsu, Kuk Sool, the Koryū, Shaolin, internal/external Chinese Arts, and to a smaller extent, Muay Boran and Bokator.

I ask this question because I fear the opinions of others and my opinions always seem to be taken doqn by others. I have always admired and contemplated Buddhism (mainly Shingon and Zen/Chan) and this comes along with my interest in Asian languages. I don’t know what to do and this is as much sense as I can make right now. Any thoughts? Can I?
@ Rikashi…, dude I was referring to the Thai martial art of Muay Boran, the predecessor of Muay Thai.
People, my belief system is very shaken by the opinions of others. I always liked Buddhism (especially Mikkyô) but damn it some atheists just tear it down. I feel very dead and frustrated.
@ Rikashi… Alright, I get you. No need to be such an asshole about it. Yeesh!
I know, sorry. I am just feeling frustrated here.
@Kokoro, since when did I make such a mountain? I am listening, but your mind fails to grasp the fact that I am trying to clarify my last question here. If you want to be rude, don’t edit your answer.

In some martial gyms, they instructors are religious and the practice of some martial arts do involve prayer and meditation.

If you feel that you being an atheist means that you should not participate in these practices, then don’t do them, but it would be rude to ignore their beliefs when you are there to learn with them.

Be openminded. You’re not converting, you’re carrying a tradition in their gym that you chose to train with.

Please, never call it Muay Boran. Kid, Muay Boran is just a name. The wrong name. It is not a martial art, it’s a cash grab. Do you really think the ancients called it by that name? It is not the predecessor of Muay Thai. Do you know the real predecessor is? Savate and Boxing. The Thai influence is Muay Khad Chuek. Not that bullshit cashgrab, "Muay Boran".

I was not being an arsehole. You are just over-sensitive.

 

10 Responses to Can a nontheist like me study Asian martial arts?

  1. ksnake10 says:

    Most martial arts today have become incredibly "Westernized" in order to attract and retain students. Finding martial arts schools that actually preserve their Eastern spiritual traditions are very rare. You will find most martial arts schools to be secular so that they do not turn off the students from the core instruction.
    References :

  2. Trey says:

    Interesting question.

    To an extent, yes you can. There are a few arts (namely Baguazhang and Shaolin Gongfu) that are inevitably linked to their spiritual/religious basis. Without delving into the spiritual side of arts such as these you may not get the full benefits.

    Most places however are more then happy to teach you without any need for religious/spiritual elements. Meditation or self reflection is common though.

    Not sure if it is what you are asking for, but i hope it helps. Good luck on your journey.

    Amituofo.
    References :
    Student @ International Wing Chun Academy.

  3. clown(s) around says:

    Yes, I have a thought.

    Stop trying to sound smart, pick a martial at you like … then … SHUT UP AND TRAIN!
    References :

  4. Sev says:

    Your religion has nothing to do with Martial Arts or your ability to practice them. If you care what others think about you based on your beliefs in life, you won’t get far in anything, I’ll tell you that.

    Guaranteed with the exception of a few places in the world, if you go to train in Martial Arts, religion will virtually be absent in the practice of the style.
    References :
    Atheist

  5. Friedrich says:

    martial arts and religion…..very little to do with each other. Konish Yukinaga. Christian samurai I am sure his martial arts were just as deadly as a zen buddist, Shinto, or ikko monk of his time.
    also rumored that nobunaga practiced no religion.
    martial arts is an art. if you liked to make music or you liked to paint, whether or not you knew god or did not know a god wouldn’t change much in the physical ability aspect. only practice can alter that. I encourage anyone to try anything they are interested in if they are serious and dedicated.
    References :

  6. Five-Fahn-Doryehoute** says:

    No one wants to understand anything in the end when you come towards teacher they all follow and don’t care if the blame is on you enstead of ending it all.
    References :

  7. Rikashiku says:

    In some martial gyms, they instructors are religious and the practice of some martial arts do involve prayer and meditation.

    If you feel that you being an atheist means that you should not participate in these practices, then don’t do them, but it would be rude to ignore their beliefs when you are there to learn with them.

    Be openminded. You’re not converting, you’re carrying a tradition in their gym that you chose to train with.

    Please, never call it Muay Boran. Kid, Muay Boran is just a name. The wrong name. It is not a martial art, it’s a cash grab. Do you really think the ancients called it by that name? It is not the predecessor of Muay Thai. Do you know the real predecessor is? Savate and Boxing. The Thai influence is Muay Khad Chuek. Not that bullshit cashgrab, "Muay Boran".

    I was not being an arsehole. You are just over-sensitive.
    References :
    Catholic. Practiced shinto prayers with my Bujinkan teacher. Also buddhist prayers and rituals with my muay thai instructors. Some korean prayers from my super devout christian taekwondo instructor, and systema trainer who was muslim. I prayed with him too.

  8. Georgie says:

    Many of the martial artists in the West are devoted Christians…Not just Christians but devoted ones…Very few are Buddhists..You do not need to be in the same religion to study something that originates from a different country…
    References :

  9. Kokoro says:

    religion has nothing to do with martial arts, they are completely separate
    stop making a mountain out of a mold hill, your last question did give you the answers you are not listening
    References :
    30yrs ma

  10. Jim R says:

    You need no religion to participate in martial art.
    You do need the will to train.
    Up to you.
    References :

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