Martial, Martial, Martial…

Once in a while I get a little bored with the status quo of how I do things, which is rather ironic considering I dislike change within my personal life. Which is also odd, since Diabetes and my line of work throw nothing but constant change at me. Look at that, I’m still in the first paragraph and I’ve already started rambling. Anyway, I won’t admit that I sometimes hit a writer’s block and run out of material to write… I WON’T ADMIT IT, SO BACK OFF! Ahem, anyhoo…

I had someone ask me a weird question a few months ago; well before Christmas. Normally, I just answer the question and move on, unless it holds enough material for decent content. But given my current drought… The question was if martial law had anything to with martial arts. Yes. And no. And both. The answer isn’t as simple as either one or both. So, I’ve decided to provide a few simple definitions of all the terms I can think of that include the word “martial.”

Let’s start by defining the word “martial.” According to, the word martial means relating to war, combat or military life. […] Less commonly, martial can mean warlike or characteristic of a warrior. Now that we’ve clarified that little tidbit, let’s move on to some terms…

Martial Arts: this is the first and most expected definition I’d provide. Martial arts refers to a codified system of training and protocol, typically in the combat and fighting arts. There are different definitions based on the reason why one trains in martial arts. Karate and Judo are examples of empty-hand martial arts. Kendo and Kobudo are examples of weapons-based martial arts;
Martial Artist: in simple terms, this refers to someone who practices the martial arts. On the more complicated side, a martial artists is some one who lives their life according to the martial way, but dedicates their life to the study and practice of whatever style of martial arts they’ve decided to undertake. This is mostly a personal definition, so I’ll include that a practitioner of MMA is NOT a martial artist. maybe a little jaded, but whatevs…
Martial Way: this term translates in Japanese as Budo, and is loosely defined as “way of war.” The martial way refers to the lifestyle and path you choose in life while practicing the martial arts, and not necessarily related to war. I could probably spend some time arguing over this one with some of my cross-styled colleagues, but luckily they aren’t here. Moving on…
Martial Law: since this one is what based the question my friend approached me with, I supposed I should define it, as well. Martial law is defined as a situation where local government and law enforcement personnel are overwhelmed by some critical emergency and surrender control and law enforcement over to military forces, including army and National Guard (depending on where we’re talking about). During martial law, typical municipal, Provincial and Federal (some) laws make way for military authority. Whoever is in direct command of an area’s military is given broad authority to enforce and even make, laws;
Martial Values: I couldn’t find an “official” definition for this bad boy, so I guess I’ll have to dip into my deep well of expertise on this one… (waiting for the sound of everyone to stop laughing). Martial values, in an unofficial way, refers to the values one carries with them during their journey through the martial arts. These can include but are not limited to, respect, honour, dignity, duty and obligation. There are many other values attached to this term, but those are the ones that stand out most prominently for me.

There you have it! A bunch of redundant definitions that y’all will likely forget by tomorrow. Of course, by tomorrow I may have some better content to provide as opposed to a batch of definitions that you could have likely have Googled instead of reading my usual, long-winded drawl. But, hey! They can’t all be winners! Keep reading, folks! ☯

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I am a practitioner of the martial arts and student of the Buddhist faith. I have been a Type 1 Diabetic since I was 4 years old and have been fighting the uphill battle it includes ever since. I enjoy fitness and health and looking for new ways to improve both, as well as examining the many questions of life. Although I have no formal medical training, I have amassed a wealth of knowledge regarding health, Diabetes, martial arts as well as Buddhism and philosophy. My goal is to share this information with the world, and perhaps provide some sarcastic humour along the way. Welcome!

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