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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Explaining Things

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

In karate, often in the more authenticate traditional Asian way, the technique is demonstrated and seldom with words. At one time sensei would demonstrate what it was he wanted you to learn and do “three times” and then you were expected to work on it till you got it. This is the Eastern View on things martial arts. In the Western View we seem to need to break things down into its minutest form, the not only demonstrate it but explain it in words. When you have the words and actions of sensei along with tactile teaching, where sensei moves you and adjusts your position, structure and alignment, etc., you get a pretty good teaching method.  Even if the words don’t seem to match up with what is being demonstrated along with those tactile teaching methods your mind tends to get it, at least superficially. 

Where things begin to fall apart is when you practice on your own. Often, because of the Western view of things, we tend to lose the tactile and demonstrated aspects of the teaching and lean heavily toward the words used. If those words didn’t match up well with the demon and tactile parts and if you didn’t practice it repeatedly under supervision and corrections then you will gravitate toward your interpretation and perceptions of those words. It is necessary to teach using words that are properly representative of what you want the other person to learn, know and understand. 

Words seem to be critically important in our Western communications. In addition, since the student is no longer able to perceive, either consciously or unconsciously, the body language of the sensei the words lose more of their true meaning. As an example, when you hear the words and perceive body language and detect a disparity between the two the professionals tell you to listen to the body language. Later, in solo practice, you are missing a great deal of what was conveyed so you may get it wrong.

Here is the crunch, when you do and when you detect that mistake later while observing others in the dojo including senpai’s and the sensei don’t allow that to effect your mental state because all of this is normal, expected and a part of the learning process. 

So, in that light, the following quote was provided with a couple of graphics that stood out to my interpretation. The two graphics were displays of both the hands and arms along with the legs and feet as to the weapons or tools taught in karate. They are a display of karate weapons - NOT TECHNIQUES. 

The quote that was provided with no additional explanation was, “Some of the other techniques found in karate.” Granted, the original post on the blog was directed toward that sensei’ students and associate sensei but when it comes to students it can, if not corrected in the blog and on the dojo floor, lead toward a misunderstanding. The karate weapons, i.e., “Seiken, shuto, etc. along with kakato, and chusoku, etc.” are the weapons we use to apply those techniques. They are in and of themselves not actually techniques, actions, moves or methodologies but the tool used to apply those in appropriate situations. 

A strike is a technique and it is applied USING say the fore-knuckles or open hand or shuto or edge of the hand. Well, actually since we are on words, techniques is not truly the right term for that either. In a more holistic way we usually “run through our OODA, then we decide on a methodology that leads to our actions and movements that leads us to a combination of techniques (techniques properly defined are actually not single techniques but a collection of actions/movements done as consecutive rapid manner to get inside the adversary’s loop, etc.) where the use of those karate tools or weapons as described are used to apply appropriate “Fense (defense/offense).”

Lets use something innocuous to explain the importance of words, spoken and written, where failing to get them right causes certain issues. Lets say you have to also take a written test for grade/level promotions where you are ask to define a set of techniques and you listed the karate weapons in a list of upper and lower, i.e., seiken and kakato, etc. In truth, as long as the grader is on the same incorrect page, you will in all likelihood get that one wrong and that could be the one answer that fails or passes said test. (Note: I don’t like, agree or use such written testing for personal reasons). 

It is a bit like writing about self-defense where one small article of a few paragraphs is JUST NOT ENOUGH to explain it properly. One of the reasons I start off my articles with a caveat and end the articles with a bibliography so that the reader understands there is more and research toward analysis so that we can synthesize answers and so on to get the right stuff. 

It is why so many need to really edit and analyze their articles and when mistakes are made ensure they correct or at least address it say in a caveat but most important let the reader know that such things need to be analyzed by their sensei with them to come up with the correct answer that can lead to new and creative ways of applying our martial arts. 

Bibliography (Click the link)

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