When you begin to feel like you are a tough guy, a warrior, a master of the martial arts or that you have lived a tough life, just take a moment and get some perspective with the following:
I've stopped knives that were coming to disembowel me
I've clawed for my gun while bullets ripped past me
I've dodged as someone tried to put an ax in my skull
I've fought screaming steel and left rubber on the road to avoid death
I've clawed broken glass out of my body after their opening attack failed
I've spit blood and body parts and broke strangle holds before gouging eyes
I've charged into fires, fought through blizzards and run from tornados
I've survived being hunted by gangs, killers and contract killers
The streets were my home, I hunted in the night and was hunted in turn
Please don't brag to me that you're a survivor because someone hit you. And don't tell me how 'tough' you are because of your training. As much as I've been through I know people who have survived much, much worse. - Marc MacYoung
WARNING, CAVEAT AND NOTE
The postings on this blog are my interpretation of readings, studies and experiences therefore errors and omissions are mine and mine alone. The content surrounding the extracts of books, see bibliography on this blog site, are also mine and mine alone therefore errors and omissions are also mine and mine alone and therefore why I highly recommended one read, study, research and fact find the material for clarity. My effort here is self-clarity toward a fuller understanding of the subject matter. See the bibliography for information on the books. Please make note that this article/post is my personal analysis of the subject and the information used was chosen or picked by me. It is not an analysis piece because it lacks complete and comprehensive research, it was not adequately and completely investigated and it is not balanced, i.e., it is my personal view without the views of others including subject experts, etc. Look at this as “Infotainment rather then expert research.” This is an opinion/editorial article/post meant to persuade the reader to think, decide and accept or reject my premise. It is an attempt to cause change or reinforce attitudes, beliefs and values as they apply to martial arts and/or self-defense. It is merely a commentary on the subject in the particular article presented.
Note: I will endevor to provide a bibliography and italicize any direct quotes from the materials I use for this blog. If there are mistakes, errors, and/or omissions, I take full responsibility for them as they are mine and mine alone. If you find any mistakes, errors, and/or omissions please comment and let me know along with the correct information and/or sources.
“What you are reading right now is a blog. It’s written and posted by me, because I want to. I get no financial remuneration for writing it. I don’t have to meet anyone’s criteria in order to post it. Not only I don’t have an employer or publisher, but I’m not even constrained by having to please an audience. If people won’t like it, they won’t read it, but I won’t lose anything by it. Provided I don’t break any laws (libel, incitement to violence, etc.), I can post whatever I want. This means that I can write openly and honestly, however controversial my opinions may be. It also means that I could write total bullshit; there is no quality control. I could be biased. I could be insane. I could be trolling. … not all sources are equivalent, and all sources have their pros and cons. These needs to be taken into account when evaluating information, and all information should be evaluated.” - God’s Bastard, Sourcing Sources (this applies to this and other blogs by me as well; if you follow the idea's, advice or information you are on your own, don't come crying to me, it is all on you do do the work to make sure it works for you!)
“You should prepare yourself to dedicate at least five or six years to your training and practice to understand the philosophy and physiokinetics of martial arts and karate so that you can understand the true spirit of everything and dedicate your mind, body and spirit to the discipline of the art.” - cejames (note: you are on your own, make sure you get expert hands-on guidance in all things martial and self-defense)
“All I say is by way of discourse, and nothing by way of advice. I should not speak so boldly if it were my due to be believed.” - Montaigne
On Bushido Code
XII. If you have a little leisure, read books. ... . [knowledge is power; learning all we can from all sources is relevant and necessary for a well rounded person and martial artists.]
XV. It is boorish and vile to have no poetic sensibility or skill, ... . [this one also means to me a full understanding of principles/fundamentals and that which can be derived from the studies of the ken-po goku-i and all the ancient classics, etc.]
... First you should become skilled in the essentials, and then practice the standard techniques ... . [since this comes from a Japanese historical source it just goes to show that one MUST become skilled in the essentials. Essentials in my view are the principles/fundamentals of the martial arts. To practice the standard techniques seems to allude to practice of waza, kata, drills, etc. but does not allude to remaining within that area so one could theorize that there is more beyond this level, etc.]
... the “Arts of peace and War, ... ,” ... From of old, the rule has been, “Practice the Arts of Peace on the left hand, and the Arts of War on the right.” Mastery of both is required. [Note: this can also be related to the Isshinryu-no-Megami hand position, i.e. the left hand held down and open in a fashion to indicate peace/peaceful/or art of peace while the right hand in a fist to represent the combative aspects of the system or the practice and study of the arts of war.]
Excerpted from “Hojo Soun’s Twenty-One Articles”
Momoyama Period (1573-1603) is interesting as the Shogun, Hideyoshi Toyotomi, made some major changes, including forcing all non-samurai to give up their weapons ... [I have not verified this yet but this may be around the time the Okinawans were defanged but not necessarily the actions taken by the Okinawan Royalty when disarming its people before the Japanese.]
McCullough, Helen (trans.), The Tale of the Heike (Stanford, CA; Stanford University Press, 1990).
Shimizu, Yoshiaki, ed., Japan: The Shaping of Daimyo Culture 1185-1868 (Washington, DC: National Gallery of Art, 1988).
Steenstrup, Carl, “Hoko Soun’s Twenty-One Articles: The Code of Conduct of the Odawara Hojo,” Monumenta Nipponica 29: 30 (Autumn 1974), pp. 283-303.
Suzuki, D. T., Zen and Japanese Culture (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1959, p. 280). Wilson, William Ritchie (trans.), H␣gen Monogatari: Tale of the Disorder in H␣gen (Ithaca,
NH: East Asia Program, Cornell University, 2001). Yoshida Kenk␣, Essays in Idleness, Donald Keene, trans. (New York: Columbia University