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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The Crescent Moon Step

An acquaintance in Isshinryu mentioned to me that some advanced practitioners when performing and/or demonstrating a kata and drill failed to perform the crescent moon step. The crescent moon step has a purpose and is a teaching tool much like the kata itself, i.e. the various techniques and combinations. In a nutshell it moves you off the adversaries center line and at the same time removes your centerline from the adversaries direction of attack. There are more lessons gained from using the crescent moon step in kata, this is just the one that comes to my mind each time I am asked about the crescent moon step. 

Now, when I first studied my system, Isshinryu, my sensei did not teach the crescent moon step in our kata. I later learned that the kata I was originally taught were not the same as others who practiced Isshinryu. Honestly, I didn’t feel it made any difference in my karate. Simply, anything that may have been intended but missed is simply a tool I was not exposed to in those first years. With the amount of stuff you can gleam from a simpler study of the kata, etc., you can extract a great deal as you progress. Because I wanted to have all the available tools I implemented those things I found missing or misunderstood. 

Personally, I feel that just because you might not have the same tools in your tool box that it means nothing overall and fundamentally in the practice of a martial art. Yes, it would be great to learn the entire/complete system but even those who learned the crescent mood step originally in their studies and practice in some cases have stopped that practice or simply forgotten for the need of expedience when doing drills or even sparring. 

As to the use of the crescent moon step from kata to real applications as possible in the limited practice of sparring it is not used except for the lesson it teaches, i.e. to always move off center and out of the way of an attack so you can apply your center to their off center forcing them to stop, turn and redirect their attack. It that moment you have beaten their OODA loop, i.e. they return from action to the observe, orient and decide while you are acting with your techniques. 

This is not rocket science here, many things in kata and drills don’t actually translate directly to street self defense or even combatives for fighting and/or combat hand-to-hand. How often do you actually witness anyone fighting who uses traditional martial arts as taught originally in kata, etc.? Not many, if any. It is possible but most don’t, they go for the kickboxing type combinations to win the tournament, etc. 

Remember, being exacting is critical as a kyu through san-dan levels but even there when trying to translate what you learn to application such as for self-defense is not exacting. The idea here is to learn all the fundamental principles of martial systems, i.e. as follows:

Universality, Control, Efficiency, Lengthen Our Line, Percentage Principle, Std of Infinite Measure, Power Paradox, Ratio, Simplicity, Natural Action, Michelangelo Principle, Reciprocity, Opponents as Illusions, Reflexive Action, Training Truth, Imperception and Deception.

Breathing, Posture, Triangle Guard, Centerline, Primary Gate, Spinal Alignment, Axis, Minor Axis, Structure, Heaviness, Relaxation, Wave Energy, Convergence, Centeredness, Triangulation Point, The Dynamic Sphere, Body-Mind, Void, Centripetal Force, Centrifugal Force, Sequential Locking & Sequential Relaxation, Peripheral Vision, Tactile Sensitivity, Rooting.

Techniques vs. Technique, Equal Rights, Compliment, Kobo Ichi, Economical Motion, Active Movement, Positioning, Angling, Leading Control, Complex Forces, Indirect Pressure, Live Energy & Dead Energy, Torsion & Pinning, Speed, Timing, Rhythm, Balance, Reactive Control, Natural & Unnatural Motion, Weak Link, Non-Telegraphing, Extension and Penetration.

Mind, Mushin, Kime, Non-intention, Yin-Yang, Oneness, Zanshin & Being, Non-action, Character, The Empty Cup.

These principles bring about a philosophy that transcends those created within any specific system or style. This philosophy was derived from the work of Stephen J. Pearlman, i.e. his bai liu ha yi or one hundred styles flow into one. The philosophy applied to Okinawan and all martial systems is "Hitotsu ni oku no nagare." This philosophy means, "The flow of many into one." It is redacted from Pearlman Sensei's philosophy into one that relates to the philosophy taught through Tatsuo-san of Isshinryu's ken-po goku-i. His was formulated from his studies of the Ancient Chinese Classics such as the I-Ching and the Tao-te-ching, etc.

p.s. underlined in physiokinetic principle are the more obvious principles taught through kata such as the crescent moon step, etc.

1 comment:

John Vesia said...

Crescent step: yes, tai sabaki, and also disrupt opponent's forward leg via foot sweep.