About Ray Faulkenberry…
How do I put it in a way that makes sense, and gives you a deeper idea of where I am coming from? A tough challenge but I will do my best to begin to lay a foundation.
How about in this first post I give you my credentials. On subsequent posts I can begin to share with you MY STORY. In MY STORY I will begin to not only share with you events and experiences of my life, I will then also tie them into a deeper philosophy that is rooted in my training.
Hold it… I am getting ahead of myself. First, the credentials. Since I have told you that I am about the concept of serving, let me also say that I am also into terms like consciousness, transformation, business, communication, prosperity, evolution, spirituality, honor, integrity, honesty, sustainabiltiy, prosperity, and living a rich, full life. That is part of me and we will get to all of these in many ways but back to the credentials… lol.
My Formal Educational Background: SCHOOLS
I grew up in Northern California – Concord to be exact where I graduated from Clayton Valley High School back in the day of 1978. I went to college through the California State University system and then on to graduate school where I finished a Doctorate in Psychology. I focused my training in a few areas: Communication theory, Consciousness Studies, Organizational/Industrial Psychology, and Psycho-Spiritual studies. This provided a wonderful spark for me to continue my learning as my life went on!
Non Traditional Education – MARTIAL ARTS
I have spent most of my life studying martial arts and found it to be a wonderful LIVING philosophy of how to be human. When most people think of martial arts, I’m sure that the majority of them think of “kick, smash, punch.” Other images conjured may come up are of Bruce Lee, Chuck Norris, Steven Segal, Jackie Chan, Jet Li, and a host of other Hollywood actors who have portrayed talented martial artists. However, despite the fact that I have excellent functional skills, martial arts, for me, is about how you live your life. Living a life of compassion, honesty, integrity, service, and appreciation are at the very ROOT of martial arts (in my humble opinon).
I hold a high level black belt in Taekwondo, Kenpo, and other lower ranked black belts in Tai-Chi and traditional ancient weapons and while these belts and ranks may impress others, all it really tells me is that I’ve been at it a long time and the black belt after all these years is starting to fray and turn white! (This is okay and is another lesson for all of us that I will share at a later time!)
I have owned and operated martial arts schools for a lot of my adult life and continue to teach it part-time in many different formats. The format you are reading is truly one style of martial arts… I don’t know if you are aware of it, but by reading this post you have begun studying martial arts from my philosophy… lol. As you continue, you will learn more and more about how martial arts has very little to do with self-defense.
Spiritual Education – INTERFAITH
I have always been spiritual in my life although I have NEVER been what I call religious. Many years ago I was guided to an educational program that looked to honor the WORLD’S religions. I felt that I was fairly well read in the various spiritual philosophies and found great wisdom and beauty in all of them. Much to my surprise, there is a whole belief structure called INTERFAITH which allows an individual to study world religions and pull from any of them to share/enhance their own spiritual journey.
I enrolled into this program and 2 years later became an ordained Interfaith minister. I laugh when I think of it as I thought before entering my spiritual training that ministers were “preachy, stuffy, and tunnel-visioned” in their thinking. (somewhat limited thinking, I know!) I don’t know about all ministers but I am as grounded and down-to-earth as anybody I know… (I think) and love to laugh, hang out with my friends, and enjoy life like everybody else.
So, don’t let any of these “titles” fool you. I am truly no different from you, and as you continue to read on, you will find out that in my view we are all the same… We are all one. Yeah, yeah, I can hear and see you sigh and roll your eyes… Trust me… bear with me and see if you don’t begin to see how much we all have in common and how much we can learn from each other. Oh, and trust me on this also – I have a lot to learn from you. If you are NOT willing to help me learn then, well, we are both wasting our time.
Therefore, I am hoping in my heart of hearts that you will engage what is written and said and share back with me your thoughts, ideas, questions, and experiences so that we may begin a dialog that will take us both to unforeseen places where we can be surprised, laugh, learn, cry, and share the wisdom of the ages (or locker room) as it resides within all of us.
Come back often and see what we are into. I promise to update this on a very regular basis and I truly wish to hear your thoughts, feedback, and your own story.
Till next time, may all your dreams come true in a manner in which you will recognize, love, and appreciate!