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
Parts as a Whole
My desire to write both the blogs and (future) short fictional stories is to express things from the self in a way that folks can see, hear or touch in some direct or esoteric way.
I can't pump determination into a student, and would not if I could. What I can do is try to tell folks what they are in for, and help them acquire the knowledge that makes the difference between an amateur and a professional.
A successful martial artists, like any other professional endeavor, is all one wholehearted thing, not just the collection of the parts. Everything in the martial arts, its parts, fits together, flows together, and harmonizes with a unique personal rhythm. When we talk, teach and write about the components of the whole, when we try to teach you to achieve proficiency of a new skill, you need to know what the components are and how they work.
You try to improve one piece or component at at time - work on form, function and application, for instance, until you make progress; then turn to another aspect and work on that. If you try to learn all of it all at once, you will stifle growth, your progress, ability and proficiency will be stagnated, frozen and paralyzed.
Remember that the sum of all the parts, components, dealt with in practice and training are all interrelated. It is up to you to bring them together into the one whole of the system - and make it work.
You must learn the system your own way, or you won't be able to truly learn it at all. I am not trying to say that a karate-ka can do whatever they please; the karate-ka still has to learn along with the rest of the dojo. I am trying to convey that although the Sensei can tell, show and direct what is necessary to a karate-ka you have to learn the rules, follow them, and the bend (break some) them to fit your uniqueness.
We all have different bodies, minds and spirits - we are unique human beings. Remember that the brain, each human brain is more unique and individual than fingerprints, has a lot of variability. The number and kinds of cells in a given area are different inside every brain. You follow the rules until you get proficient enough to then start to blend the parts into a whole that will be a bit outside the rules and sometimes outside the entire box to best encode the practice and application into mind, body and soul.
Karate or any martial art is not just "one thing." It is a cluster of many things and abilities that are merged in a unique way each and every time they are applied. The components or parts learned are where you find your strengths and weaknesses and that uniqueness in your blending into a wholehearted "one whole system" is where the rubber meets the road. The system your being taught is designed to help you do this and it behooves the practitioner to learn to get the most out of what you have.
The unconscious works better if you don't watch it too closely. Follow the rules, learn them and apply them - then let them go, somewhat by bending and sometimes breaking. Remember, The unconscious works better if you don't watch it too closely.