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A man awake

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When do we become cowardly?

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White Crane Feather

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Last night I dreamed that I was out for a night on the town with a friend. He was a thin East Indian guy a little younger than me. It was fun. We visited a few places while he looked for girls. Being married, I was the wing man.

Anyway, I teach martial arts and have been a martial artists for nearly 30 years. I own a martial arts school. The mind of a life long martial artist is full of confidence if not a tad of arrogance ;). Having been a full contact competitor in kickboxing, MMA, and pancration, physical combat dosn't really bother me... Or does it? The male mind is full of day dreams of saving people from terrorists, what if scenarios in some sort of robbery or home invasion. All martial artists day dream about these things. It's just in our nature. A natural outcropping is I have found myself in a number of situations because I have always felt like it was my responsibility to help when I can, and a youthful arrogance in the past has put me in some hot water. But every single time, I knew I could handle it.

The dream

Well we ended up stopping at this gas station. The attendant was a beautiful Asian girl. I was happy for my friend because she was smiling and flirting with him. I stayed in the car. He had a tank of propane or something the he needed to get filled, so they went out together. The large propane tank was at the other end of a large parking lot. There were filling it together talking and smiling. Then he left her there and walked back into the store. I was just waiting, but then three very large an muscular men ride their bicycles up to her. I knew right away something was wrong. Her expression turned to fear. I saw her sort of try to move away but they were off their bikes blocking her path. I felt an urge to jump up and intervene, buy analysis of the situation told me that I did not stand a chance. I am mr. Native American ninja, but the reality of combat is that I simply could not possibly take all these guys by myself and my skinny Indian friend could be of no use.

The soon had her by the arm and was leading her into the store where my friend was. I was still struggling with how exactly to react. I had my cell phone, so I started dialing for police. But still their path took them by the car.

If they discovered me, I was not going to be able to stop them and would become part of the mess. I slinked down in my seat so that they miss me. I felt an upwelling if fear because I knew this was going to be nasty. I was still dialing 911but my phone was not working. I let them pass feeling so very ashamed of myself. What happened to all those heroic actions in my day dreams? What happened to the unstoppable force for good that I imagined myself to be? Here I was cowering in a car hoping to not be seen while a young woman was lead away to god knows what and leaving my defenseless friend to deal with it.

Tactically I knew I was making the right decision, I knew I could not stop this, and if I could not go for help no one would. I was not lucid, so I was under the impression this was all real. Still I felt horribly cowardly to the pit of my stomach. I always considered myself the kind of person ready to face any odds for people. Obviously that layer of my ego has been stripped. Actions speak much louder than thoughts, words, or plans.

After they entered the store I frantically ran to a nearby business to call the police. When I finally got them on the phone, I woke up.

I have to say I feel terrible. I know it was a dream and no one got hurt, but I am so very disappointed in myself. I also know that my actions were tactically sound, but I can't shake my cowardice. I was not the person that thought I was in that dream.

I have had nightmares and things before but on occasion I have these ego deflating dreams, and they are the worst.

I suppose its another lesson or maybe a preparation so that I act in line with my values and I know the terrible personal consequences if I don't. I do not want to ever feel the way I do right now. The guilt would be unbearable if it were real and people were hurt.

I can only thank god for giving me the truth. hopefully I can be the person that I want to be should the occasion arise. Or if I had to behave that way to be as tactically effective as possible, hopefully I would be ok with myself.

Thanks for listening.

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