What is a warrior? A warrior is a way of life, a way of thinking, a way of being. Carlos Castaneda says we choose only once, to be warriors or ordinary. We choose only once. Because choosing to be a warrior alters your fundamental approach to life. While others will view everything as a blessing or a curse, you see only challenges. And a warrior lives to overcome challenges.
Every warrior has a code, an ethos. It is an invisible thread that connects him to all of his warrior brothers and sisters since the beginning of time. Steven Pressfield asks “How do we find our true calling, our soul companions, our destiny? He answers, “In this task, our mightiest ally is the warrior ethos.”
A warrior never hopes, but he must have faith. Hope is powerless, useless... The longer we sit and hope the more time we waste, because the universe gives only what is sought, what is believed! But yet a warrior must have faith. Because at times not every path is clear, and not every enemy a fiery dragon. When the forest is dark the warrior holds his ground with faith that if he remembers the warrior code, the light to illuminate the darkness will come.
For the warrior, the body is as important as the mind, because the two are inseparable. Danielle Bolleli writes “ A person who knows there is a wild wolf living under the skin has less reason to be intimidated by reality. Even when the power of the mind is in doubt, the body can provide tangible proof.”
A warrior is not an ascetic. He does not deny himself the pleasures of conquest simply for the sake of denying them. He realizes that in denying oneself it is easy to think he is doing great things, when really he is just focused on himself. But neither is the warrior attached to these pleasures. He can walk away from them at any time, and sometimes he does, just to prove it to himself.
The warrior is a natural leader, and he leads under one principle-- Follow me. When Alexander the great was threatened with mutiny after years of a brutal campaign in India, he stripped down naked, so all the men could see his scars. “Bring forth a man who has bled more than me, and we will go home.” No one came forth, because it was Alexander, riding his horse Bucephalus with a double plumed helmet who led every charge. Instead, his men erupted in cheers and pounded their shields.
The Warrior is a Believer. As Paulo Coelho says, “Because he believes in miracles, miracles begin to happen. Because he is sure that his thoughts can change his life, his life begins to change. Because he is certain that he will find love, love appears.”
A warrior is highly tuned to sense danger, but he does not fear. He does not fear because pain is temporary and death is an illusion. What is eternal cannot die, and the warrior knows that he will laugh, he will love, and he will fight for all eternity, in this world or some other.
If he errs, if he wanders, if he indulges in self pity, if he complains... He does not despair. He knows that he is human, and he remembers the choice he made. He picks his sword back up from the ground, and resumes the path of the warrior.
A warrior fights for one reason alone: love. Love of life, love of what is good, love of family, love of tribe, and love of our infinite soul on the quest for impeccability. He lets love swell in his heart, flushing through every cell in his being until he cannot help but proclaim, like Cyrano De Bergerac, “I am going to be a storm -- a flame -- I need to fight whole armies alone. I have ten hearts! I have a hundred arms! I feel too strong to war with mortals. Bring me GIANTS!”