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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Self-Mastery: EI or Emotional Intelligence

Blog Article/Post Caveat (Read First Please: Click the Link)

Emotional intelligence model, are about the self and the self is one of those topics heard spoken of in most karate and martial arts dojo. In this model we become concerned with, “Self-awareness and Self-management.” 

The following are the very basis to EI self-mastery, i.e., “Awareness of our internal states in all situations of both calm and stress, and the management of those states.” 

Competencies of emotional management, a drive to achieve our goals in karate and martial arts toward self-defense, our adaptability under adrenal stress-conditioned situations and our initiative in applying our expertise are all based on our emotional self-management. 

Now, how we go about that in karate and martial arts self-defense, well that is the issue isn’t it? See the bibliography for references and sources with emphasis on adrenal stress-conditioned drill type training as a start. 

Quote: “The amygdala is a trigger point for emotional distress, anger, impulse, fear, and so on. When the amygdala takes over, it acts as the ‘bad boss,’ leading us, our monkey, to take actions we might regret later.” 

EI self-mastery is about exposing ourselves and recognizing and accepting our emotional monkey and taking the appropriate actions to learn and apply better actions in place of that triggered within our amygdala, making the proper actions available through access to procedural memory so we can remain within the self-defense square. 

It should be noted that training is critical to handling EI for self-mastery, i.e., when properly activated and trained it creates within the brain that enables us to have a decision where we can act better. Remember, for the most part, we cannot dictate what emotions we are going to feel, when we are going to feel them, nor how strongly we will feel them. Emotions come unbidden from our amygdala and other subcortical areas of our brains. We then though training and practice come to a choice point, a very brief point that comes and goes very quickly ergo train it and practice it. Once we feel a certain way we have to train to trigger appropriate actions so that we can express those emotions appropriate to the situation. You want to develop what brain experts call the, “Inhibitory circuits” so when triggered will enable you to have a decision that will make you more appropriate in actions and words, to guide you on how to respond.

Encoding actions into procedural memory then connecting those actions to the inhibitory circuits of the brain can achieve great things while also influencing those around you, i.e., emotions and actions tend to be able to trigger like emotions and actions in a group setting. This is self-regulation and influential emanation of appropriate EI to the environment and it occupants. It is an opposite to group dynamics where it can be beneficial in lieu of not beneficial. 

Remember, our amygdala is our scanning ability to detect threats and nature gave us this ability for survival. This brain of ours is our only tool of survival and we must train it to survive the self-defense threat. If the brain detects a threat, in that instant it takes over the brain and that means our brains are hijacked so training, practice and experience must be properly applied to create and implement that procedural memory connection to the inhibitory circuits of our brains. 

Note: Once emotions and the amygdala have hijacked our brains we no longer have the ability to learn and we rely heavily on what brain experts call, “Over-learned habits,” the ways or actions we have used time and time again (hint hint, what does this say to karate-ka and martial artists). Remember that the time for innovation and flexibility in the hijack are gone so training, practice and experience must be achieved before, not during or after. 

This is just the tip of the iceberg and as such we must remember that it is about not only what we know, but what we don’t know and what we don’t know we don’t know. The brain just doesn’t know what it does not know and therefore cannot activate either procedural memory or those zombie sub-routines that act seemingly instinctively because to code the sub-routines means you have to know the data necessary for proper coding. 

Bibliography (Click the link)

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