What you write is, of course, the essence of the survival mindset, but it needs to be backed up by an effective continuum of training concepts, ranging from situational awareness, verbal, physical and weapons.
Len: We got off to another bad start. I'd like to try another tact. Perhaps if we focus on one quote in Van's forum regarding the "survival mindset", we might be able to position the role of words, situational awareness and body language as a subject worthy of exploration and study.
I had four years experience in running a major sized nightclub/restaurant complex in one of the toughest cities on the east coast. I can honestly say I relied on VSD a lot more than physical violence. I witnessed lots of fights where the combatants reacted to the first "verbal/body-language" mistake made. They reacted to any perceived insult, whether real or imagined, with an animal-like response.
I also witnessed and was part of hundreds of potential fights, that were defused with a smile and a non-threatening attitude.
Some of the recent threads being discussed on the forums are including this "non-fighting" option into the force continuum, which is most important. Given the number of newer students who read these forums, I feel that it is important to stress that fighting is not the only or best solution to a conflict.
We can practice this "non-threatening" attitude while posting on these forums as an excellent form of exposure and understanding of VSD.