Systema philosophy centers on the belief that a warrior is created through a synergy of combat skill, strong spirit, and a healthy body. Combat skill dictates that movements be powerful and precise, instant and economical, and spontaneous and diverse. The spirit must be calm and free of anger, irritation, fear, self-pity, delusion, and pride. The body must be absent of tension, and filled with endurance, flexibility, effortless movement, and explosive potential. This unique combination of physical, psychological, and spiritual components does not merely prepare students for violence, but allows them to adopt a relaxed and peaceful approach to every-day stress and adversity.
Systema’s principle goal is to strengthen body, psyche, family, and country while causing no damage to self or others. Systema’s alternate name is “Poznai Sebia” or “Know Yourself.” It encourages students to recognize self-limitations and to acquire a strength of spirit that comes from seeing life’s purpose with humility and clarity. Because Systema’s roots are in the Russian Orthodox Christian faith, it is believed that all events in life ultimately lead to deep self-knowledge. Systema training carries that same objective: to place participants in the ideal setting for gaining a true sense of self.
The Systema discipline involves a complete system of physical and spiritual health, with fundamental emphasis on a life centered on peace and decency. Mikhail Ryabko’s words speak to this approach: “Be a good person and everything else will come to you.”