Of Modern Warriors

I do what I do because it is the right thing to do. I am a warrior, and it is the way of the warrior to fight superior odds.
Paul Watson

If you've been reading my posts for a while, you have noticed my constant references to having a warrior's mindset towards life. You might think this is a rather romantic way of looking at life, considering that professional soldiers have replaced the warrior class of the past generations. You might even think this mentality in some way glorifies a violent tradition and celebrates wars. Because there are people who think this way is precisely why we must never lose the warrior culture.
There is a distinct difference between a soldier and a warrior. Soldiers, with all the respect that they deserve, are employees. Their actions are determined by the chain of command and their direction is defined by their orders.  Warriors are "self developed." Their actions are determined by their dedication to a greater good and their direction is defined by their ideals. There are certainly plenty soldiers who are warriors, but not all are. There are also certainly plenty warriors who aren't soldiers, but not enough.
But what defines a warrior? His ability to fight? No...Anyone can be taught to fight if they're willing to learn. Warrior is something you become, not something you learn. It comes from accepting that you must become comfortable with being uncomfortable to make a difference. It's knowing that how you make a difference matters as much as the goal. And it all starts with 3 simple concepts so ingrained into their heart that they might just be fire branded on to their soul. It's about having a purpose, having honor, and having courage.
A warrior has a purpose, as he serves with determination because it's the right thing to do. It could be to a moral, ideological, or even a personal cause, but whatever it is, it serves as a source of strength to them when they have to push past their own limits. And limits are what make warriors so powerful. Limits define how far someone can go. To a warrior, limits are nothing more than the starting gate to test his determination. Anything that happened before is simply a warm up.
Honor, so often dismissed by those who don't understand it's importance or are unwilling to be honorable, is the understanding that how you do something is as important as what you are doing. It's about being honest to a fault, about being decent and straight forward. It's a willingness to admit your intentions, something rare in a world where we justify trickery and misdirection as acceptable actions when done to our convenience. It's about openly drawing a sword when others will hide a dagger. It's about being accountable for your actions when others look for excuses.
And lastly, he is courageous, not because he's fearless, but because of his acceptance to a life of self-sacrifice. In a world that constantly promotes the ideals of selfishness and self-preservation, the warrior is defined by his willingness to help others, regardless of personal risk or loss. He's comfortable with the fact that a life worth living requires self sacrifice, even if that sacrifice is his own life. It's not that he cares little for his own safety, but rather that he cares more for the safety of those around him.
In a world of scavengers trying to feed of the weak and sheep unable to defend themselves, warriors aren't just needed...they are crucial to our existence. They hold at bay the threats that others don't see or refuse to acknowledge. They are the ones who, not only see how precious life is, but are also willing to fight for it.
So, to my fellow warriors, my brothers, keep your swords sharp, your sword arm strong, and your head high. For we might be few but, when it really matters, we are more than enough.