May 1999

Indomitable Spirit

by Marlene Collins, Cho Dan

Hello Sir!

You asked me to write an article on one of the Tenets, and I have! However, first, I would like to say something to the school in general. I hope you don't mind. You know how I get when I start to write, Sir ... <grin>

This is Marlene in Texas. Most of you have no idea who I am ... but my heart is still with each and every one of you. If there was only one gift I could give to anyone who walks into our studio of Tang Soo Do in Fremont, it would be the wisdom to make the decision to stay with this Art and make it a part of your life ... and the confidence to give yourself over into Mr. Bell's keeping and let him help guide you and teach you this wonderful art form.

I was fortunate enough to be a part of the beginning of this studio. I've seen a man with a vision turn a dream into reality. I've also been so very fortunate to have had his influence in my life and watch myself grow in so many ways ... just as he grew and as the school grew. I think all of us who have achieved a black belt in this school feel the same way. I remember our twins when they were white belts with me. Now they have surpassed every goal we all originally set for ourselves.

For those students who walk away after three months, six months, or even a year or more ... you are still taking with you seeds that have been planted and will continue to grow inside you. We have all been so very fortunate to find a teacher who truly personifies an "indomitable spirit." None of us can leave this school without taking some very important and very positive life lessons with us.

Those of you who choose to stay with the school and achieve Black Belt status ... your job has just begun. I don't have to offer words of wisdom to you ... because you know how special our school and our training has been. You know you have found something very special in life, and you will give back what you have learned to everyone you meet ... just through the way you are.

I don't think it sinks in at first ... but we ARE different. We are Black Belts in Tang Soo Do from 1st Tang Soo Do of Fremont and we have been trained by a very special Sah Bum Nim. We now have a responsibility to share with others, even if just as an example, what we have learned through this wonderful art form.

I send my love and regard to every student in the school. I can't tell you how much I wish I was still an active part of the school. Tang Soo!!!!!

Here is the article:

I answered my telephone last night and heard a very dear and very familiar voice say, "Hello Mrs. Collins! " Immediately I was transported back to my studio in Fremont and a feeling of peace and wellbeing flowed through me. It reminded me of a time when I faced the most important crossroad of my life and chose the right direction. I found Tang Soo Do and chose to welcome its teachings and Mr. Bell's guidance into my life. The day I made this decision, the tenets of Tang Soo Do became a stronger and stronger influence in my life.

My Sah Bum Nim said, "I have a favor to ask of you ... I want you to write about one of the Tenets." From the moment he asked, I had no doubt which one I would choose.

Although each Tenet in itself is equally important, I've always felt the first six had to be strongly engrained in a person in order for them to achieve the 7th one... "Indomitable Spirit."

How can one achieve a "Spirit" that is able to stand up to everything that life will throw at it? One must have the integrity to deal with people and situations in a fair and equal way. One must be able to have the concentration needed to stay on task and work towards a goal. One must always be able to perservere and not give up when life throws stumbling blocks in one's way. One must have the respect and obedience to accept people and situations with an open heart and understanding. One must have learned self-control within oneself to stop and evaluate all of life's situations. And, one must have learned the humility to work towards the best in everything in life, for oneself and for others, without expecting recognition or even understanding for doing so.

To me ... this is the definition of "Indomitable Spirit. "

We are all human. We will all make mistakes. But we, as students in Tang Soo Do, also have to keep in mind that everyday we must be aware of how we project ourselves to others and how we perceive ourselves. As long as we always stay aware of these two things ... we will continue to grow and work towards the ultimate goal ... of truly living the life of a student in Tang Soo Do ...

God Bless and Tang Soo!


Cable TV Note

The "David Bell's Tang Soo Do Show" is currently being shown on TCI Cable's community access channels 3 and 23, Fremont, on Monday nights 7:00 to 7:30 pm.

I am pleased to announce TCI Cable Newark has picked up the show, now playing on channel 6 on Tuesdays at 2:00 pm.