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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Words, Terms and Characters

This post will use the word/term "chin-ku-chi" as its example.

[caveat: just because you read it here does not mean that I have any of the characters, words or terms correct - look at it as a method to convey an idea, a point or simply thinking outside the box.]

sinew - ken (Chin)- 腱 (筋)
bone - hone (ku)- 骨
energy - ki (chi)- 精神 (腕力 - physical strength, muscular power, force)

The reason the characters are so important for depending on which is used can provide meaning that may or may not be related to the Japanese word used unless it was adopted by a group, martial art group, where it takes on its unique meaning for that group:

勢力争い(せいりょくあらそい) / a power struggle
体勢(たいせい) / a posture, a stance
態勢(たいせい) / an attitude, preparedness, a condition
勢いよく(いきおいよく) / vigorously, with great force

to my view this creates a situation where it becomes extremely important to discover the actual character's the master's intended for words in English such as "Chin-ku-chi" to discover their true meaning. It should be understood that sometimes characters when adopted by a group, MA, don't necessarily translate because of its unique usage within only that group vs. mainstream kanji/kana as defined by the culture in general.

Take: 全力を注ぐ(ぜんりょくをそそぐ) / focus one's efforts, concentrate one's energies
This kanji, i.e. 注, still falls under the overall word definition of "energy" but it is actually not the one used for this particular word. It does denote a specificity that applies to the general usage of the word in Western Karate, overall and in general when defined. To focus effort and concentrate energy to a single point such as the fore-knuckles of the tate-ken, vertical fist, you have to apply a set of principles, fundamental principles of martial systems, to gain the maximum energy application to the target. This is what is meant when one uses the term, "chin-ku-chi."

Notice the examples just prior to this paragraph above where the principles are alluded too. Posture, stance, attitude, force, etc. Although not inclusive or complete they do lead toward a greater understanding and meaning in the application of chin-ku-chi in our teachings and practices of "Ti or Te."

省エネ(しょうえね) / energy conservation, saving energy

In this above next example the character for energy is, 省, which in itself talks of one small fundamental principle which is the conservation of energy so it might be applied to the target. If body posture and alignment along with other energy conservation principles, i.e. positive relaxation, force direction, etc., conserve energy within the body so when applied it is not dissipated by faulty body alignment where muscles take the energy to maintain its posture thus removing energy traveling to the point of departure, the fist or foot, etc. It is therefore a dangerous and limiting function of English to diminish the intent of the Asian karate master's intent in their teachings because we look to words with specifics vs. a more general feel and philosophy that allows a greater understanding, i.e. getting outside the box we place around our interpretations due to our culture vs. the Asian culture driving the discipline of such as karate, aikido, kung fu, etc.

This next one I kind of like a bit as you will see:

精魂を傾ける(せいこんをかたむける) / put one's whole heart and soul, devote all one's energy, exert one's utmost strength

When I read about "whole heart" and "soul" and "devotion of one's energy" as well as "exert one's UTMOST strength" I feel it speaks to an aspect of energy that the exactness of most definitions to chin-ku-chi misses. The deal of "wholehearted" practice of a martial system. I suspect this is one of many reasons the named chosen for the branch I practice was chosen, i.e. "one heart" style.

The character, 魂, is also used to mean "energy" but in a more metaphysical way by a direct meaning of "a soul, a spirit or a ghost." The statement also includes the other characters that do mean "energy" directly, i.e. 精, and when you derive additional meaning to such characters they do include soul, spirit, heart, etc. which also could and does expand the possibilities of the meaning we have for such terms, words or phrases.

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