Kendo’s Healing Message for November

Kendo’s healing message for November 2018 is simple and requires few words, yet it should give rise to contemplation of something equally simple yet fundamental to the human condition – self-sacrifice.

As we commemorate the centenary anniversary of the Armistice which ended the First World War, we should remember the self-sacrifice made by so many in pursuit of a higher ideal, which was the preservation of the liberty of our nation. There are two principal aspects to recognising such acts: firstly, it should inspire us to consider the ways in which we could be self-sacrificing for others, but also, it is an act of humility.

At one hundred years on we are unlikely to know anyone from the Great War, but we may know or have seen or heard of people who have also served, who have put themselves in danger for others for others, most of whom they probably didn’t even know – us. The centenary of the Armistice is a touch-stone for all such brave and selfless souls, and should give us a sense of perspective.

As good as we think we are, as well-rounded and generous as we consider ourselves, most of us have not been asked to make such sacrifices – our world is safe, ordered, and largely free from threats. Most of us would not hesitate to join any effort to do what is right, but because our world is so safe, even the possibility of such a need never arises, so the thought of acting in such ways never crosses our minds.

The exception is those who do serve and all those who have served. They act and have acted with courage most of us will never have to find, with dedication most us have never been required to show, by being ready to be self-sacrificing for people they don’t even know.

Kendo’s healing message for November is to think about those who have chosen to live and act by such excellent principles. Doing so will put our lives into a new perspective, which will hopefully inform our approach to everything in our own lives; being so aware, we will be more ready to recognise the needs of others, and even the smallest gesture of self-sacrifice could make the world of difference to someone in need.

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