Or perhaps I should say to whom it doesn’t concern. As a minister and pastor as well as a martial artist I like to consider myself patient, diplomatic and tactful. Realizing that there is power in the tongue I am careful about what I say and how I say it. The bible says that life and death and blessing and cursing resides in the power of the tongue. Certain things can be spoken into existence with an arrant word. It isn’t easy to take back something once it is spoken. As preacher and poet I have a high regard for the spoken word. It is my bread and butter. The tool of the trade.
With that being said let me contradict myself. At this moment I am feeling neither diplomatic nor tactful and my patience has just about run out. I’ve just gotten home after burying a dear friend, teacher and mentor. I drove to and from Lexington, Kentucky, performed the services for Dr. Lawrence Day and stayed to minister to, console and find solace with friend and family. I am broken hearted and exhausted. The storm in Indiana made the trip long and challenging but by God’s mercy my wife and I arrived home safely. It was a long and tedious day.
It was brought to my attention while in Lexington that once again several nay sayers are putting their noses in matters that don’t concern them. Let me try a last ditch effort at some semblance of diplomacy at this juncture. There are things that are sacrosanct to a family. No-one outside of the family has any business getting involved in another family’s matters. Unless one is invited into that sacred circle or asked for opinion it is better that he keep his opinion to himself. Unfortunately I can’t evoke a gag order on the individuals who feel it their right and duty to voice approval or disapproval, acceptance or unacceptance in matters that are not theirs to comment on. Believe me if I could I would.
The Black Dragon Fighting Society is more than a martial art organization. It is a family. What happens inside that family is the sole propriety of the members of that family. Outsiders have no say in what we do or how we do it. Since we don’t seek or require the approval of any other organization or self designated examiner of our inner workings we don’t put a lot of credence in what outsiders think. As much as I would like to see the IFAA BDFS be embraced by the so called status quo; the traditional martial art community, that desire isn’t cause enough to give up our privacy or our autonomy. We have a right to embrace whom we will and accept whoever we consider worthy of our ranks. Whether or not our decisions meet the approval of this one or that one is neither here nor there. We are who and what we are with no apologies made or undue explanation given. We reserve the right of any family to make our own decisions regarding acceptance and membership.
Why other people expend so much energy involving themselves in the business of others is beyond me. Perhaps they should get a life of their own and stop trying to live vicariously by the lives of others.
Who was where when, who joined at what point, who serves in what position isn’t what describes the Black Dragons. Our sense of family and brotherhood guides us in the matters that seem to preoccupy individuals outside of the Black Dragon family. I feel no responsibility to satisfy anyone’s curiosity about our family business. FYI, the IFAA BDFS has the legal documents and the copyrights to all things Black Dragon. We reserve the right to conduct our business as we see fit and as long as we are breaking no law I see no reason to explain or justify anything that we do within the confines of the organization or our family.
Those who have questions can feel free to voice them to myself or others of the master’s council if those queries are done properly and with good intent. We reserve the right to answer them or not as we see fit. If it is a family matter that warrants comment comment will be offered.
If any member is queried in matters that he considers the sole business of the family or that he doesn’t consider expedient to air with someone outside of our ranks please contact me or one of the other council members and we will determine how the matter should be addressed.
Rev. Dr. Donald Miskel, ThD, DCC, MDiv.
Patriarch, IFAA BDFS
Judan Shodai Soke, IFAA BLMAA