If you’ll permit me a brief indulgence, I just want to mention that this is the 50th post on this blog. Huzzah for me. I wasn’t sure, upon starting, that I would be able to keep it up for this long (insert your own inappropriate comment here), but rest assured I have no intention of stopping now. The post for today is tangentially related to that particular reflection. Indeed, reflection is important and thus it befits us to examine and study the past. To this end practicing traditional arts is a valuable pastime.
This is, of course, part of why I study swordplay and recently I was able to try my hand at a whole new traditional art. Sword making can be done almost entirely on machine these days. And yet there remains a dedicated cadre of blacksmiths who still use traditional methods. I was recently fortunate enough to try my hand at some simple bladesmithing and look forward to my next attempt.
You get to a special place in swordplay. Eventually you can pick up a blade that is totally foreign to you and yet have an idea of how it is meant to be effectively used. I think that understanding the process of making the sword can only aid in that. Deeper understanding sometimes means feeling out what you are dealing with on a molecular level.
It’s a rewarding experience, making something with your own hands and doing is often the best way of learning. To that end I cannot recommend highly enough the act of creation. Be it as simple as cooking a fine meal or as specialized as making your own paring knife, I see it as an essential part of living.