ANYONE CAN BE AN ARTIST BUT NOT ALL WILL BE GREAT
“I don't really agree maybe some people cant get flexible that doesn't mean they aren't Martial Artist’s. Maybe they have physical problems that doesn't allow them to be as flexible as others.” Shinobi Gabriel
Who has the right to set the standard to determine who is a great Artist and who is not? Sure somebody may not be flexible because of some physical limitation but all professional athletes in any sport can use that excuse as to why they are unable to achieve a certain standard of proficiency. Fact is, you cannot be considered one of the greatest in basketball if you have a broken leg. You cannot win the Tour de France with a torn ACL. You cannot win the 100 meter dash in the Olympics with a broken ankle. You cannot be one of the greatest ballet dancers if you are not flexible. You cannot be great in the bench press with an injured elbow.
Greatness in sport requires optimum performance in your physicality with the muscles of which are required in the respective sport. Anybody can practice Martial Arts, you can even practice Martial Arts in a wheel chair, but to achieve greatness as a Martial Artist, you need to be in optimum total body athletic performance. That is why very few people can be considered one of the greatest in Martial Arts, not only is it the most physically demanding, but also mentally, and spiritually as well.
Sure we can say that everybody in this world is a Martial Artist, no matter what level they are physically, mentally, or spiritually, but in doing so we diminish the meaning behind it. I would rather go the opposite way and set a standard so high that nobody in this world is a Martial Artist because nobody in this world is perfect, with that perspective, we as human beings will have an endless journey towards self-development.
And interestingly enough, this way of thinking goes against the spirit of the Martial Arts, this is anti-meditative. The desire to better yourself and having goals is against the spirit of the Martial Arts, and it is. But if you can still train and excel without knowing that you excelling, that is exactly what makes a real Martial Artist, that is what creates genuinely humble Martial Artists. So basically a real Martial Artist can only be a real Martial Artist if he does not know he is a Martial Artist, as soon as a person starts thinking he is a Martial Artist, he is not really a Martial Artist.