In nature aggression is a natural defense mechanism that many prey and predator possess. When we think of aggression in nature it’s quite natural to think of wolves, lions, tigers, and other predators. But, this is not the type of predator aggression I am writing about. Every animal will implement aggression when they themselves, their territory, or their young are in danger. The type of aggression depends on the animal. Wolves, big cats, bears, and other predators will fight the threat. Deer will fight each other or utilize their outstanding running abilities to escape said threat. That being said, if you approached a buck whom was trapped in a corner who’s only way out was through you- hang onto your seat, because said buck would charge you, lunge at you, attempt to hit you with his his rack or paws. If you’ve ever seen a video of a rodent, or fox, or smaller animal captured in a man mad trap they seem rabid, insane, and terrifying. Growling, snarling, and screaming for approaching humans or animals to stay away. This is their natural response to life threatening situations. Even a fluffy rabbit can go to town against a threat. So, nature’s way of assisting animals to value their lives, health, and safety is through the aggression switch. I imagine at some point human beings, being a product of nature, were at some point more aggressive than today’s model. More able to fight and defend like a wild and rabid animal. But, over time we have become softer as life gets easier through technology, and we have evolved from our earlier ancestors so that we are more socially correct and accepted. However, aggression in humans still exists, and most predators/criminals when committing a crime are working through some form of aggression. Which, is why everyone else, who lives within the boundaries of society and the law are potential targets. So, for the law biding potential targets/ prey we must learn how to turn the aggression button on when ourselves or our family has been targeted by a violent criminal. Most martial arts bask in form, technique, bloated self defense systems that require a hand held encyclopedia to remember. I believe in form, technique, and self defense. I view martial arts as not only system of self defense, but as a system of enhancing one’s self. So, technique, form, mental strength, are a big part of the martial artist’s journey. However, what most programs fail to teach is the that when one is attacked her technique, focus, accuracy will suffer. Most schools do not allow drills and curriculum which allow one to develop, enhance, and utilize the aggression switch, which could also be called the “go nuts moment so you go home safe”. One thing I like to share with my students when we are working on these all out pounding on the pads drills is to visualize a wild animal backed into a corner. Visualize the growling, the snarling, and the rabid and wild state animals will do when at risk and do have a flight option. Criminals are looking for the path of least resistance. If you can turn on the aggression switch and go off I believe your chances of going home safe are greatly improved. So, developing the wild aggression switch is as important as learning how and where to strike, and how to defend against surprise attacks be it chokes, grabs, or strikes. Find the wild animal in you and learn to build the ferocity and the aggression so that you can turn it on in a time of need. Usually, the prey is smaller or less prepared than the predator. Aggression and knowledge of fighting can and will bring balance to what is naturally an imbalance. Bottom line is to be aware, never think it cannot happen to you, develop aggression, learn how to fight and defend and don’t feel bad about handing a predator his butt so that you can go home safe. It can happen to anyone, anytime, and anyplace. Be prepared.