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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Are We Stuck to Traditions

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

I was introduced to a deeper meaning of the OODA loop, created by Colonel John R. Boyd (USAF ret), that has me thinking through research and analysis. It occurred to me that modern martial arts are stuck in the traditional form of practice to the exclusion of the higher and broader asepcts that make martial arts effective in conflict and violence.

We seem to be, just like certain larger organizations who deal with conflict and violence, stuck in a more traditional attrition type of fighting or what I am going to call, “Fense.” In one of the thesis written to the work of Colonel Boyd the author stated, “The aristocratic tradition, the top-down command and control system, the slavish addiction to the ‘Principle of concentration’ and the drill regulation mind-set, all taken together, reveal an ‘obsession for control’ by high-level superiors over low-level subordinates.”

The reason I find a connection here is because our modern martial arts were and are influenced a great deal by military mind-sets and mind-states. Add in that the commercialization of modern martial arts is and must be tied to such a system to work is evident, to me. 

The aristocratic tradition is about structure and hierarchal control of those who have a lower status than the aristocrats. Military have the rank structure for status and control as well. Add in that modern martial arts also has a status structure, i.e., its senpai to kohai, deshi to sensei, etc. structure, where rank and status puts the system into an aristocratic hierarchal model for control and today economic gain. 

Then the top-down command and control system also speaks as well to the aristocratic hierarchal model for control. When we tie income and aristocratic hierarchal model for control to the dojo we then create a means to enforce that by status, ego and the various testing requirements to move up and in higher status and authority within this model. 

Karate and martial arts are also about drills and that mind-set has placed more control on how the art is trained, practices and most important applied. It meets and exceeds many of the concepts, traits and symbolic aspects of what is already described and it takes modern martial arts far and away from the “Traditional Authenticate and Classical” form of practice and training. 

I believe, originally, that training and practice was about the individual and their self as to how they train and practice on an individual independent way while adhering to the more cultural organic natural social cohesive way that I refer to as the Eastern View vs. the Western View above.  I believe the so referred to aristocratic traditional way of the Western View is the chasm that separates us from the full and complete way of Eastern Martial Arts. 

We are taking the Eastern Way and polluting it with the Western way while leaving only remnants of that Eastern Way to satisfy our need to connect to the Eastern Cultural Way of martial arts of a authenticate traditional and classical model. The Western way seems to truly have a obsession for control between the higher-levels over the lower-level subordinates, the kyu grades and dan-sha levels, etc. 

Truthfully, I firmly believe that we can have the best of both worlds if we can accept and embrace the truth to both. This is actually the true authenticate way of a traditional practice of Eastern Ways of martial arts. It doesn’t have to be exact and unchangeable, it can be useful at the lower levels while allowing for change, creativity, analysis and synthesis into an more diverse, robust and appropriate model for modern society and times. There are a hand full out there that are actually headed in this direction but most are still mired in the past, the past alone and unchanged. The best of both worlds means a blending, mutually beneficial and connected, of the past, the present and the possible future. 

Traditions and traditional are not meant to mire us in past and often inappropriate ways for the present but rather a means to take the past, to which we all must learn from so it cannot be REPEATED in the future or even the present. Repetition has its place but innovation through creative analysis and synthesis as possibly related to the Eastern way of “Cheng-n-Ch’i” can take us places we never imagined when we first entered the dojo.

As a matter of fact, it is this connectivity of the modern present to the ancient past that makes the possibilities of the future possible, creative and most exciting. It is this that makes martial arts something useful and beneficial for an entire lifetime of training, practice and applications.

Honestly, we should NOT be STUCK to traditions. We SHOULD be connected to traditions so they become useful toward appropriate change of now and the future. We should honor and be true to traditions but not the the dogmatic adherence to traditions to the detriment of change, creativity and applicability to modern times and possible futures. One day, the very thing we train in now, even if not connected to traditional ways, will become the traditional ways of our times and that means it should be traditional but not traditional in the sense I present. Something to think about, something to consider and something to analyze.   

Bibliography (Click the link)

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