In life, a killer instinct is a willingness to do anything to be called the winner. Says who! A killer instinct allows a person to kill if the situation requires it, but it does make a person a cheat, dishonorable, a criminal, or an indiscriminate killer. Winning does not require killing, except where your job requires it, such as in mortal combat. This can lead to a very dangerous way of life, where anything goes just so long as a person feels like they have won what they are seeking. With this type of attitude a person would feel justified to kill in order to keep a girl/boy friend, succeed in business, or in many cases just to prove a point. It is the prevalence of this attitude which might actually explain the current level of violence in our society, rather than the violence we see in television shows and movies. Other cultures have as much if not more violence in their forms of entertainment, than America, most noticeably the Japanese, and yet they have a lot less violence in their society. This could be simply because they have a strong since of loyalty, honor, and community presence, while in America, we have an intense interest in self promotion and a win at any cost, competitive attitude. If all this is true, then we are screwed! We have millions of active and reserve soldiers who have had to live in a killer instinct mode for a year or more while in combat in the Iraq War. Now that they are back in the United States and walking among use, we must all be in danger. Just bumping into one of these killers in the grocery store may lead to the person suddenly killing us.
However, not everybody in America is competitive. True. In the business world, these people are called workers, not owners, managers, or leaders.There are many people who simply want to live their lives in peace, be the best they can be, and not become in conflict with anyone. True. However, without warriors to protect them, they will be dead, or living a peaceful existence as slaves. And it is these people who would most be in need of self defense training and the philosophical instruction of traditional martial arts, where the training is geared towards self improvement and personal defense. While it may be true they need the training, without a killer instinct, they will not be willing to use it. You can lead a horse to water but you cannot make him drink. You can teach self-defense to a pacifist but you cannot make him fight.
Some people then wonder, if a person learning self defense does not develop a killer instinct, how can they deal with a serious attack from a vicious assailant? -Good question.- And the answer to that question is the superior idea known as Honshin. Most martial artists are exposed to the idea of clearing their minds so that they can defend themselves effectively. This clearing of the mind is known as Mushin, and refers to getting rid of all extraneous thoughts which could interfere with spontaneous movement. -Bad answer. More philosophical BS. Suppose a black belt is on a hot date. As he walks the date back to his car after a meal in a fine restaurant, they are attacked by carjacker in the parking lot. Does anyone really believe that while walking his date to the car the black belt is thinking about a possible attack and clearing his mind using mushin—BULLSHIN.