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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Sensei - Equal Measure

I have written about this in various forms but what it comes down to is balance. I often felt I missed a lot while teaching and now that I spend a good deal of time on just practice I realize what I was missing was the equal measure in teaching and practice. Not the practice and teaching of students but rather the practice and teaching of myself.

I believe, good sensei, tend to spend an exorbitant amount of time dedicated to students and their progress they tend to ignore that one student that is critical to teaching other students - that one student being the sensei. Let me try to clear up the muddy waters here.

When a sensei spends that amount of time on students they miss a lot while at the same time learn a lot from those students. But where it loses is when you learn from the student but fail to spend equal measure on your own studies, practice and training you don't get the full measure of what you are learning.

I believe, now which is better late than never, is a sensei must spend equal time practicing and training on their own with a total and complete focus on their practices, training and studies. If I teach one hour I feel I need to practice and train and study at least one hour physically with another hour mentally and finally one more hour of study - minimum. 

Yes, you are going to read this and say, "I don't have enough time between teaching students and taking care of family, home and work (if you don't earn enough teaching martial arts)!" Well, this is a disservice to you as a sensei and even more so as a teacher. Teachers, in general, have to spend a lot more time studying and taking classes to remain certified to teach our kids so why should a person teaching martial arts (especially for self-defense) get to ignore what they learn and present to practitioners. 

This also presents issues as to knowledge of the sensei. In my thirty-seven years in martial arts I have found many things that were just plain wrong that I learned from my sensei. I also found many things I never learned from sensei that I discovered or learned elsewhere that if I remained simply teaching by ROTE my students would have missed. 

In order to propagate and pass on martial arts to students I feel an obligation to make sure it is always the best and most up to date and relevant teachings possible. Sensei must take equal measure of what they know toward what they teach. Learning is a never ending effort and to neglect your own practice and training for students is depriving those students of the best you can give.

Some will say that they get plenty of practice with students because of the participation they put in but they tend to forget the mental training received from that is different from the mental training they get from a personal effort without the distractions of teaching. You can argue this point saying that one does the other but they don't. The effort and self-analysis of what you do comes from a focus and diligence on you the sensei while teaching is about the student while teaching. 

Yes, you get a lot especially with teaching, training and practicing the more physical aspects but what are you missing. Many of the professionals I follow in their writings tend to still place a lot of emphasis on preparation and that means they are constantly working out things they discover in the dojo, on their own for the purpose of learning and then applying - both in application and teaching applications. 

I also have witnessed other solid and experienced sensei actually stop teaching to focus on the study of martial arts because of this same belief but they too may be losing a source that balances out the study of the arts - the interactions of other professionals and students, etc. 

So, if you teach, spend the equal time practicing on your own for yourself. Your students will appreciate what they get, a fresh perspective each and every time you encounter those students on the dojo floor. 

So goes my personal philosophy on this subject :-)

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