Review: Meditations on Violence by Rory Miller

(I’ve been posting a lot of my reviews lately at Metamora Martial Arts, so if you’re wondering why you haven’t seen any here lately, that’s why.)

Look. I’ve never been in a fight. Don’t want to.

That’s why I’m glad there are people like Rory Miller. A 30-year veteran of the martial arts and corrections officer, he’s had way more hand-to-hand experience than I ever hope to have.

Miller uses Meditations on Violence: A Comparison of Martial Arts Training & Real World Violence to compare martial arts training to real-world violence.

Spoiler alert: It’s not what we as instructors like to think it is.

He shares his tips with us on how to think, the types of violence that are out there, what kinds of predators there are, and, of course, how to make it all work (with lots and lots of practice), and dealing with the aftermath of an altercation. “Whether it went well or not,” he writes, “you’ll be playing it back again in your mind, over and over.”

One of the most beneficial things from this book is that Miller provides a great bibliography. It’s not that many authors don’t (and those who don’t should), but this one is broken down by type. “About People, About Crime, Aftermath” are a few of the topics he groups books under. There is no doubt that I have dog-eared that page for future reference.

After all, martial arts in and of themselves aren’t really worth much if we can’t make connect them to other points in our lives.

By Adam Bockler

Adam Bockler is a B2B marketing professional, a black belt martial arts instructor, DDP Yoga instructor, and a personal trainer.