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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If Character Were the Prerequisite

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

Kowakan Dojo provided a most excellent article today on, “The Waiting Game.” ( )  It reminded me that most of today’s karate and martial arts would not last very long if that were the way to enroll. We don’t do those things and the chances of them every returning would be astronomical as to the obstacles against. 

In an earlier article about rank with quotes from other karate and martial arts luminaries speaks to the commercialization of karate and martial arts too. Both would result in few taking up the challenge and even fewer going the distance - a lifetime of training and practice. As to the dan-i system, that came about when circumstances resulted in karate and martial arts being made a part of the educational systems for political and social conditioning purposes. The old way of karate was a dojo in the Sensei’s yard or other remote and hidden away place, no rank and very few students/practitioners. You hear stories all the time of the dojo consisting of two or three students who had to “qualify” to be accepted.

Sometimes acceptance would be achieved only if someone of note provided you a recommendation and that someone had to have a solid close relationship with the sensei. Now, with the educational versions being pushed that meant big, big classes with lots and lots of students and often only one sensei. You CANNOT teach large groups adequately in this discipline, it is not doable without sacrifices. 

The old stories of how the sensei would test the discipline, the attitude and the character of the prospective student may or may not be true but I do understand from some solid sources that this practice came about during the span between the samurai era and this more modern era of the way vs. the combative ways of martial prowess. 

Lets say for the sake of argument, karate sensei in those early years would use the character prerequisite to allow or gain entrance to this dojo. Then the question arises, whose concept of character? What constitutes a good character and when is it truly evident that the person has that character best suited for the karate disciplines? These very same questions arise in our modern times and you add to that, “How does the sensei resolve the need to make a living in the dojo and the acceptance under the character requirements he or she may have to teach and them to learn?” 

In truth, this concept is doable and would achieve a lot of great results. It is also my belief that this type of model, character prerequisite, would work commercially. I believe that a person of integrity and character that teaches karate and martial arts through actions and deeds acts as the character litmus test over time. Most who have that integrity and character tend to teach a certain way and that way often is seen by those lacking such character as a waste of time and who tend to walk out the door soon after starting. This is actually one reason why sensei with character and integrity tend to have higher turnover and tend to teach outside the means of making a living other than karate and martial arts. 

I am of the belief that such sensei can and do work with a character prerequisite but not the one told as follows in this quote from Kowakan’s blog:

“The martial arts at that time were taught to only carefully selected students whose character had been observed closely by the teacher. This of course, was not a guarantee that all persons selected to become students met such qualifications, hence the long term testing and evaluation period of performing chores and learning only basics. The unworthy would be weeded out or kept at a basic level. … What we can glean from this tradition of making students wait is that the apparent paradox of martial arts reducing violence may simply come down to a selection bias as this sort of practice would aid in weeding out undesirable students, but not completely eliminate them.” - Kowakan Blog, The Waiting Game (quote by Chojun Miyagi Sensei

This is especially true here in the America’s, folks without an appropriate character and integrity tend to want things quickly and with minimum fuss and muss. The kind of dedication, diligence and attitude to last and learn in karate and martial arts, traditionally speaking, tends to weed out the chaff from the wheat real fast. The time spent is often minimal and what they learn is a few basics that will do them little to no good regardless. 

Character is a prerequisite in certain dojo and it is perceived and determined by a sensei of integrity and character through actions and deeds both in and out of the dojo. Those with character and integrity stay, those without leave and that is life. The “Waiting Game” is still ON, just done differently than the old stories. 

Bibliography (Click the link)

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