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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Take out the Trash

In karate the kata names usually have some meaning that relates to how that kata became a kata. It is a label for that kata and that name has no other purpose. In modern karate circles it might be misconstrued by practitioners that the kata name relates to the use of the kata techniques. 

Lets take one of the Isshinryu kata, Naihanchi. It is said by some that the kata was developed to be used when fighting against a wall. It is important that although this kata, and the others for that matter, can all be used if you are backed up against a wall. This explanation might be useful to get a novice starting to think about what kata can provide on a basic level. 

Socrates (the movie character) told his disciple one time while poking a finger at his forehead, "to take out the trash." What I believe he meant in this teaching is you have to remove limiting labels, symbols, etc. from your practice and achieve something more appropriate to any given situation especially when it comes to self-defense. 

Like my recent post on the "embusen" line, kata and kata names are great for historical purposes as well as getting a novice practitioner on the right road but the sensei "must" make sure to instill in that person they should "take out the trash." This quote is another example, one might assume using the term trash means something useless. This is not true, the true trash being removed is that box we all tend to put things into for convenience when in reality it is about taking your practice and training "outside the box." 

Naihanchi and the wall thing are good, they are good starters for the novice and they have historical significance. To me kata can come from anywhere for any reason especially if you want to pass along that experience to the person without experience. 

I see naihanchi as a multi-directional kata that can be applied in at least six directions and the only limitation is if against a wall fine but with the ability to turn you can achieve usefulness of said techniques against any situation. 

Don't limit your kata to some initial symbolic meaning. Practice, practice and practice to achieve fluidity that will create appropriate responses to any confrontation. 

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