When the journey is more important then the destination, you have become a GB Black Belt”
So years after you first stepped in and fell in love with Jiu-Jitsu, learning the rudiments, the advance skills and the expert levels, winning gold in tournaments, making friends, creating healthy rivalries. Being looked up as a skilled master of the art, with your grit and will to share to others, you are now known as the Black Belt.
There is a popular urban legend about black belts, from white, because of dirty, experience, blood and sweat, it has turned into black. It’s like hardening of stone. Elements of experience and learning come together and is absorbed by the belt. The ceremonials of the black belts implies that this is happening. We all start from white, and by experience we are now endowed with experience. Congratulations, Professor.
In Gracie Barra, we use the term professor. Professor, from the word “profess” simply means affirming one’s faith or allegiance. A black belt today, will forever be a black belt. No amount of defeat, suffering, drawbacks, will ever take it away. The profession of the professor is to profess to the world that he has reached the first leg of his journey.
Um… just the first leg? Yes. The journey doesn’t end for those who has reached this level. The vast landscape of BJJ will always be an ever expanding horizon. It’s not endless, it is only expanding.
We call Black Belts as servants. servants to those who would like to follow in his steps. Servants to those who will enjoys the quality of training and the diligence that it promotes.
If you want to be a black belt, be ready to serve. We believe that the knowledge should not die with you. It should be passed on as a legacy. The only way to continue your lineage is to serve.
No one is a born leader, we make leaders, but we are naturally wired to serve. Black Belts serve for the good of all.