Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Samurai Mind Training For American Warriors

On the heels of the book and movie "The Men Who Stare At Goats" we see that the U.S. Military is indeed still involved in mind training for it's "Warriors", and you can bet this story is just the tip of the iceberg:

From Time Magazine, link

"Not long ago at Fort Bragg, N.C., the country's largest military base, seven soldiers sat in a semi-circle, lights dimmed, eyes closed, two fingertips lightly pressed beneath their belly buttons to activate their "core." Electronic music thumped as the soldiers tried to silence their thoughts, the key to Warrior Mind Training, a form of meditation slowly making inroads on military bases across the country. "This is mental push-ups," Sarah Ernst told the weekly class she leads for soldiers at Fort Bragg. "There's a certain burn. It's a workout."
"Think military and you think macho, not meditation, but that's about to change now that the Army intends to train its 1.1 million soldiers in the art of mental toughness."
"The Samurai image was selected after careful deliberation; it was certifiably anti-sissy. "We took a long time to decide how we were going to package this," says Ernst, who moved to North Carolina in 2006 and teaches classes at Fort Bragg as well as Camp Lejeune, a Marine base near the coast. "There are a lot of ways you could describe the benefits of doing mind training and meditation. Maybe from a civilian approach we would emphasize cultivating happiness or peace. But that's not generally what a young soldier is interested in. They want to become the best warrior they can be."

(D.R.)- Interesting, I think it's a good idea. Read the complete report at the link above...


Patrick Parker said...

Sounds good. I personally like the idea of marketing it as "American Samurai" instead of Jedi Warriors, like Strozzi-Heckler did in his work. At least the Samurai were real-life and not fantasy/sci-fi characters.

After reading Strozzi-Heckler's book, I've been waiting for someone to start advertising that they would train folks to be Beni Jeserit!

Scott said...

Wouldn't it be nice if they instituted mental toughness at the elementary school level.

Anonymous said...

Interesting, but here's a thought: Samurai (as I understand it) were also taught to accept death. Personally, I'd rather have the soldiers on my side trying to stay alive and let the other side's soldiers accept death, but maybe I don't understand modern warfare.

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