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
“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
“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
Something New Every Day
Today, I see something that I find "critical" to the practice of martial arts, any art. That one thing that seems to provide a connection to all things but tends to fall away because of many factors of which one is simply not seeing it for the shadow we ourselves cast over it.
Let me say that all martial arts are good. They all serve a purpose. The specifics of a system are more in line with creating its unique personality that tends to fit individual personalities. I like Okinawan Isshinryu because the aspects unique to that system speak to me individually. You might practice Kung Fu, one of its many flavors.
So, what are the unifying aspects of all martial arts that connect us all universally? One is basics, the introduction to the system. This does not change. The next are the fundamentals of martial systems, they also do not change. Lastly, for now anyway, are the principles of the martial arts, they also don't change. I can add, for this moment till I study it a bit more, that both principles and fundamentals meet or converge.
I will quote Sensei Steven L. Pearlman from his book, "The Book of Martial Power." In chapter one, "The Nature and Importance of Principles," he gives a definition as follows:
- A "fundamental" law or truth upon which other techniques and actions are based;
- The natural way a thing [such as the human body] operates; and
- A philosophical or moral tenet.
Note: See bibliography below and get a copy, well worth the cost and effort.
Body mechanics, fundamental that transcends a particular system and encompasses all of them.
Momentum, fundamental that transcends a particular system and encompasses all of them.
Just two samples of what I see as both fundamental and a principle as defined above. As he explains this is the principles that allow all the different and varying systems practiced doable as long as one takes the time to learn the principles/fundamentals that give the system its "oomph!"
So, because I seek knowledge from any and all sources. Because I just happened to read the "Mokuren Dojo Blog." Because Patrick Parker Sensei decided to write posts on this books content I found another library addition that helps be believe and strive to open my mind and allow many new concepts and things, although they were always there, by turning on another light to illuminate the many paths we have available in our pursuit of the way or karate-do for me.
Even in the many factions of Isshinryu, regardless of beliefs and arguments that differentiate them, these truths, principles, remain identical in all factions, tribes, or systems; your choice of naming.
Perlman, Steven J. "The Book of Martial Power: The Universal Guide to the Combative Arts." New York. The Overlook Press. 2006.
Caveat: I reserve the right to be incorrect on this so expect me to change as I read and go on... ;-)