Please take a look at Articles on self-defense/conflict/violence for introductions to the references found in the bibliography page.

Please take a look at my bibliography if you do not see a proper reference to a post.

Please take a look at my Notable Quotes

Hey, Attention on Deck!

Hey, NOTHING here is PERSONAL, get over it - Teach Me and I will Learn!

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


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

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Understanding Chinkuchi

A very misunderstood term from Okinawa and specifically regarding the teachings of Tatsuo's system of Isshinryu. Before I provide my viewpoint on it and what it is I want to discuss some quotes that seem to miss the boat a mite. I will "quote" the quote and put comments in [brackets] for clarity.

"This is a unique mechanism, which operates in total stability and zero muscle tension."

[It is not unique in any way. It does not operate with zero tension. The only way to achieve zero tension is to be "dead." There is always a certain amount of tension. As to stability, it can only achieve that when utilized if it is used along with all the fundamental principles of the martial systems. Actually, my view, this term is very limited and only covers a couple, if that, of the principles of martial systems.]

"This concept  is unique to Ti, the ancient Okinawan Martial Art."

[It is not unique in any way. Ti is the Okinawan reference to its original indigenous system of self defense. It is not unique to Ti, it is applicable to all martial systems as it refers to a small part of the fundamental principles of martial systems.]

"Chinkuchi can only be learned by allowing the teacher to touch and guide the movement of the student during the execution of the technique."

[Chinkuchi is not a technique. It is a principle that can be applied to any and all techniques. I do believe this person is actually referring to the Sanchin kata where sanchin-shime is the Sensei checking for good sanchin which has the principle of chinkuchi within its practice. The Sensei may correct a move in sanchin but they do not guide the movement. Again, sanchin, chinkuchi is a concept and not a technique.]

"Chinkuchi can not be learned by reading a book on the subject because without the physical experience and muscle memory it is impossible to develop, embody, and produce a chinkuchi quality."

[Wow, a mouth full. Lets break it up. Yes, you cannot learn to apply chinkuchi by reading a book yet you can learn about chinkuchi by reading a book. Yes, to apply any and all of the fundamental principles of martial systems you have to "do it" and that is where sanchin and sanchin-shime come into play in learning how to apply the concept into reality. There is no such thing as muscle memory. The muscles have nothing to do with it. You are actually encoding the process deeply in the brain so it becomes natural, instinctive, and available with out conscious thought - some day. There is no chinkuchi quality. You either are able to apply the concept or not - there is not observable quality of chinkuchi to develop, embody and produce. The concept leads to many things of which can be other principles that when applied provide certain benefits that can be seen, sometimes and in some circumstances, felt through sanchin-shime, etc.]

"Chinkuchi could also be defined as a state-of-mind because it requires that both mind and body remain in total balance."

[It can not be defined as state-of-mind. State-of-mind is another concept and not a manifestation of anything chinkuchi since it is also merely a concept to describe other fundamental principles of martial systems. The practice of kata, sanchin, etc. help us to manifest the benefits described by the term chinkuchi as well as the other principles but it has nothing to do with a state-of-mind. The mind benefits from martial practices and other more esoteric studies but not.]

"Nowadays, most karate teachers who speak and write about chinkuchi do not understand it and are only able to produce stiff mechanical movements with no real-life applications."

[real-life vs. not-real-life. Life is life and it is real in all its many instances. If you can read and write about something them you can understand it at least its rudiments. If one does some stiff mechanical movement that has nothing to do with chinkuchi concepts and its manifestations in the fundamental principles of martial systems. It can't. Chinkuchi has nothing to do with applications. It is a principal that can either enhance a given technique or application or it cannot enhance it. Finally, in a sense this statement is true that many do not understand either chinkuchi or the fundamental principles of martial systems because all these statements are flawed and only allude to some understanding. Sorry :-( ]

Final comment:
we in some Isshinryu circles like to throw around such terms as some great enlightening thing that makes us special or a lack of knowledge toward this terms perceived meaning that no one else can get - ain't we special. It is a word. It is an inadequate term with an inadequate meaning that does not begin to describe what it alludes to inadequately. Go back to the fundamental principles of martial systems and you will find reference to what some in Isshinryu believe is the answer to find that its term and usage is only a partial/incomplete description of much more.

Yes, I am being catty but I am trying to convey that we must not just accept something simply because it comes from any one source no matter the reputation, age, and experience. Get a fact, work it out, and report on it. Lets get the facts straight.

Now, I may be totally off base and I look forward to hearing comments that will refute what I am saying...bring it on... :-)

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