Fundamental principles of martial traditions and methodologies are comprised of:
- and skills
There are these principles and only these principles that are foundational to the fundamental principles of karate, of a civil self-defense nature, far removed from military methods.
Examples to these five are as follows and must not be misconstrued to mean the comprehensive entirety of the martial civil self-defense world 🌎.
Everyone who practices systems of methods used for “fense (defense/offense) must lay an academic base from social mandates to laws to actions necessary, as a whole, that result in a comprehensive understanding, plus experiences, necessary to training and practice of SD.
- do you know the culture and beliefs of others?
- do you know how criminals, etc work?
- do you know how the legal system works?
- do you know how law enforcement works?
- do you understand self-defense law in your environment?
- do you know yourself?
- are you willing to recognize and accept responsibility for those actions you take for “fense?”
- do you know about force levels, etc., you may encounter and use for SD?
- do you know, understand and accept all the requirements and consequences and repercussions faced when in fense?
- do you understand the rules, cultures and beliefs of the environments you visit?
- is your pride involved?
- is your objective and thinking going to achieve goals both sides will benefit from, i.e., is what you are doing necessary? based on facts and not beliefs or emotions? and are things true to reality?
- these are the things your studies will answer BEFORE you are too deep in the hole of SD…
- and so on…
Everyone who practices systems of methods used for “fense (defense/offense) must create a personal and social philosophy necessary to achieve the objectives necessary for SD.
This is where concepts like the “goku-i” and the “kun” come into play with training and practice in the martial methods.
It is comprised of many things, like your upbringing and experiences; you beliefs; your culture; your environments; your personality; your emotional maturity/state of mind; the accumulated knowledge, understanding and experiences each day building on your mind-state and mind-set, etc., so on continued throughout your life.
Everyone who practices systems of methods used for “fense (defense/offense) must create strategies necessary to achieve avoidance, ability to observe, orient and decide on appropriate and acceptable actions as well as to make mature decisions in any actions taken to include physical as well as actions after SD.
Think 🤔, “before, during and after,” because the first is critical to the art of avoidance in SD; because the transition into during opens Pandora’s box 📦 and that simply escalates and compounds the pitfalls of allowing things to go awry.
In martial methods, such as karate for SD, all too often the before and after get very little attention, IF any at all… because, the tiny part of during that involves the fight is promoted unconsciously as the “fun stuff,” and it takes precedent to all other training and practices alluded to herein. I would say, the fun stuff is about 15% of the entire self-defense model.
Everyone who practices systems of methods used for “fense (defense/offense) must create those tactics appropriate to any given, fluid, situation; such as verbal to avoidance to deescalation to levels of force to skills, etc., that will take SD to a mutual social, legal and safety oriented conclusion.
Just consider this, tactics are not just physical techniques such as punching, kicking and takedowns, etc., but the use of you knowledge and understanding to see, truly see the road signs leading to violence, BEFORE you arrive to utilize the decision making process, i.e., using the OODA to trigger the art of avoidance, etc.
Things like your awareness of things that tickle the hairs on the back of your neck saying, “Danger, Danger Will Robinson!”
Another strategy is to listen to your spidey sense and be mature enough to tell yourself “it isn’t worth it, get out of dodge NOW!”
Side note: don’t get me wrong 😑, there are still a lot of good solid facts to support learning the “fun stuff” BECAUSE we are human and humans are instinctively violent. And like Marines, we train and practice with a goal of preparedness just in case a situation happens… out of bounds of that most excellent control of, the art of avoidance!
Everyone who practices systems of methods used for “fense (defense/offense) must create mature, emotional, creative, appropriate, socially mature, legal and mutually beneficial outcome ensuring safety and security first to self and closely followed by socially necessary safety and security of family, clan or tribe to a socially driven collective such as community of city, state and country…
Skills such as effective communications, decision making, emotional maturity and control, and those actions of variable levels of force with potential results of physicality that result in harm, grave harm and even the possibility of death.
Avoidance is that first skill that puts time and distance between our orientation on an issue and being in “the fight.” Time to decide and distance to trigger that appropriate action even if it’s “run Forrest RUN!”
Another great skill is the ability to recognize environments where it’s possible for violence and using maturity and common sense, drawing from one’s knowledge and understanding, to decide to have our fun elsewhere no matter how inviting and tempting things seem.
There is so much to learn out there and in the end it is all about you and that bank of knowledge and “understanding” you develop because “pride goeth before the fall and even the best of intentions can still open the flood gates of harm.” Be smart, stay smart and do the right thing!
I have been studying and training and researching and practicing for over forty years and there isn’t a day that goes by I am not discovering new stuff. This is why the first principle is academic, because you have to focus on accumulating data that will positively influence what, how, why, when you apply ALL your strategies and skills.
Philosophies (your principles) are your moral compass to acting in socially and legal and responsible ways to preserve your way of life. Another reason why, “skills,” are the last fundamental principle of martial methodologies, like karate for self-defense, that MUST be taught, learned and understood… it matters!