This letter is from Devotion co-founder Paul W. from the first page of DEVOTION 'Zine Issue 1.
Originally published Summer, 2021.
This is the first issue of "Devotion," a project that shares a name with both my mental and spiritual approach to physical training, as well as our temple to strength and combat here in the woods of Virginia.
All of the pieces presented here deal with the connection between the physical and the spiritual- the idea that physical training is never *just* physical, but something more. Some of them have been published elsewhere in past years, others are new.
For me, physical training with weights and Jiu Jitsu has been a practical framework around which I have built a great deal of my personal philosophy and lifestyle, as well as the way I think and perceive the world around me.
You could say that, in a way, physical culture
is my religion.
I do not believe in separation between the physical body and what some call "the soul,"
that higher, unique and unseen aspect of ourselves that makes up "who we are."
Rather, I believe that through physical training, we engage in an alchemical process of muscle and mind, blood and spirit, that transforms us in every way into a higher being if we do so with purpose and intent. Nietzsche said that "there is more wisdom in your body than in your deepest philosophy."
My deepest philosophy and my body are not different, but are one.
The physical form, the physical practices and austerities- all of these are acts of worship and honor to the ideal of our highest self.
May we all attain that ideal through our DEVOTION.
- P. W.
Interested in learning more about the culture at Devotion Jiu-Jitsu?
Check out our ongoing Youtube series, “The Way” (track 1 is below).