While the iconic monk is a warrior from somewhere in Eastern Asia who launches devastating blows with hands and feet, monks can be found worldwide. Any culture can recognize the practicality of unarmed fighting, and for that matter, many monks do fight with weapons. Fighting styles range from fluid, evasive arts to hard-hitting linear forms. What all monks have in common is the ability to be versatile in combat, and more importantly, a single-minded dedication to self-improvement. To be a monk is to train for countless hours every day, whether this is sparring with blunted swords on a dirt practice field, toughening one's body by striking trees deep in the forest, or meditating in seemingly impossible poses in the courtyard of a mountain monastery.
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