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
Sparring Tactics ...
You can add strategy to this as well and that is dependent on the practitioner because most sparring has no real strategy and the tactics are limited to one or two sets of combinations, i.e. maybe a one-two or one-two-three combination at best. Face it most "martial art systems" today skirt the fundamentals/principles and dive right in to those combinations that happen to win trophies and accolades.
It comes down to telling ourselves the story that because we "think" it is or we "think" we are actually practicing something combative that it will be there for us when we actually get into the fray, combative/violent/predatory situations.
Read the Book of Martial Power as the author actually provides some history of how he actually believed what he was taught would be there and came to find that when the proverbial dung hit the oscillating thingy he froze.
I feel that we all pretend, tell ourselves the story of comfort, that what we do is for combat/fighting when it is not. I feel that first the mind has to be focused intently on combative principles and that it must go further into action "combative simulations (Rory Miller:Chiron Blog term), i.e. comsim"
If we bypass the fundamentals/principles of a martial (combative/fighting) system then we are not practicing a combative martial art. If your mind does not actually understand the terms and intent for real life stuff then it ain't getting there.
It reminds me how lucky we all are that we will, in all likelihood, never meet Mr. Violent Predator cause if we did and did not practice with diligent-constant-intent to combative's then we will find ourselves in deep doo doo.
Marines have a strategy and the tactics that go with each combat situation within combat situation. Generally speaking American Martial Arts often don't go that far or even half way. Today strategies are to attend class and get fit with tactics of paying fees and showing up two or three times a week with intermittent absences thinking we don't have to go much further to achieve combat/fighting proficiency.
I started combative's in the Marines. My goal as many Marines was to achieve a higher level of proficiency of hand-to-hand in the remote chance my rifle or pistol stopped supporting my life style. I carried that on in the dojo I used during my career and for time after with other military like minded folks. I still believe that to practice a martial art system is to fight and to have character development and philosophies as a mind strategy to keep it morally acceptable with the extensions into life practice for personal betterment YET ...
I am not a master; I am not a professional; I still practice with combative intent every day; I don't do sports; If I spar with someone my mind is seeing an enemy and my actions are to take it to as close to extreme as I can with out doing drastic damage and that is not even close to actual combative simulations or scenarios that meet the need of professionals.
Get real, look at what you do and find the data and knowledge to see if what you do is meeting the fighting/combative goal of a martial art. Not the only goal mind you but a primary one. Self-analyze your practice to see if it meets and exceeds such requirements of "fundamentals/principles of martial systems" to see where you truly stand.
If you don't care and expect to avoid all possible combative encounters then don't delude yourself and others by saying what you practice is fighting or combat. Be real with yourself first then do what you should/could do to change your practice accordingly. If it ever gets real you are going to need it to be real!
If it gets real you will encounter "a bigger, stronger and possibly armed person who has taken every tactical advantage" and you will be positioned in a situation to their advantage and if you didn't train like this you are a ghost. Don't believe me. I am not a professional yet they exist and provide great opportunities to train in real life-like combat simulations.
I am ranting as to my view, my perspective, and my beliefs and that ain't a professional expert perspective but one of a novice who is learning or trying anyway. [why I advocate the art of "avoidance and deescalation" over anything physical. If you are not there and not available then you can avoid it all]
Chiron Blog: Rory Miller - "Self-defense and survival are very different animals: primarily mental skills, secondary emotional, and only physical when you really screw up or have a very bad, unlucky day." && "If you teach self-defense, be careful not to compress time. Long before the bear hug escape or the snap kick to the knee there was likely a better, surer, safer option. ..."