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

I am not a leading authority on any one discipline that I write about and teach, it is my hope and wish that with all the subjects I have studied it provides me an advantage point that I offer in as clear and cohesive writings as possible in introducing the matters in my materials. I hope to serve as one who inspires direction in the practitioner so they can go on to discover greater teachers and professionals that will build on this fundamental foundation. Find the authorities and synthesize a wholehearted and holistic concept, perception and belief that will not drive your practices but rather inspire them to evolve, grow and prosper. My efforts are born of those who are more experienced and knowledgable than I. I hope you find that path! See the bibliography I provide for an initial list of experts, professionals and masters of the subjects.

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Group Bonding

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

The exposure to and test of physical exertion, psychological strain, and social embarrassment, i.e., often enduring beatings, exposure to the elements, thirst, eating of unsavory foods, punishments, threats of grave bodily harm or death, etc., as initiations to membership is related to group survival culture and beliefs where the groups very survival is at stake. This is the model that military special forces types as well as basic military personnel, at a lessor degree of severity, endure to ‘earn the title’ of that group, unit or service.

Hazing, etc., as group initiation rites of tribal or fraternal societies/groups/tribes and clans because of their close ties to our very human nature in survival even with concerted efforts by social conditioning will not go away due to their criticality toward group survival dynamics. 

Add in those rituals and training requirements along with actual combat experiences the group becomes closer and more connected on levels far beyond the comprehension of most people who have not experienced such disciplines. Think of the things like the Bones Societies that make up some of the most powerful movers and shakers of our society and don’t forget that even those jihadists terrorist like groups also have their initiation rites as well. 

On a less involved way martial disciplines that are associated with the more militaristic martial ways also have a form of initiation rites that qualify a perspective member for inclusion in the group. This helps explain and understand why black belt tests can take on a more serious and often injurious nature to qualify to belong to the exclusive community of a system or styles black belts. Similar to military initiation rites as to fraternal societies the dojo graduation from the common fodder of the kyu ranks to the dan ranks requires the same form and type of initiation rite that we see in these other groups and societies. 

Even those who have made that first foray into the dan grades has experienced not just that initiation rite but a serious on-going rite of passage passing through the kyu grade systems. This also helps explain why that dan-i system was adopted and has prospered in the martial arts communities. It is simply because its very nature triggers the group driven survival requirements of a social group, it is about that survival instinct and the nature of all the tribal and fraternal group initiation rites - of passage from a normal other type human into an accepted and connected member of a special tribe that forms a bond and a social cultural belief connected bond that can withstand almost any onslaught to break it apart and kill the group or its members (see, survival again). 

You see, initiation rites of passage are a universal human experience that defies banning or social banning conditioning. Refuse it and it goes underground, i.e., you can ban sex, prohibit alcohol and try to eliminate hazing in initiation rites but they will find a way because they are perceived as genetic in nature, the very foundation of humans as if a part of our DNA. 

One study found that a “person who goes through a great deal of effort, trouble and pain to attain something tends to value it more highly than persons who attain the same thing with minimal effort.” The greater the requirement, the greater the effort of the initiate and the greater that group is perceived to be of greater interest, of more intelligence, and its desirability. All of this, all the troubles are ‘acts of group survival’. The spur future members to find the group that is more attractive and worthwhile - survival of the fittest (another view of what the initiation rites convey when applied and experienced successfully).

The loyalty and comradeships developed that requires a struggle to attain because they foster and build loyalty and dedication that increased the degree the chances of group cohesiveness and survival.  The greater the initiation rites the greater the group solidarity. It is no wonder that the military and by osmosis the martial disciplines (also adopted by the military in recent years) have things like the dan’i system and the rituals from kyu to dan grades, etc., it is a group survival trigger to our natures. 

In the Marines, William Styron wrote, “The remorseless close-order drill hour after hour in the burning sun, the mental and physical abuse, the humiliations, the frequent sadism at the hands of the drill instructors, all the claustrophobic and terrifying insults to the spirit which can make an outpost like Parris Island one of the closest things in the free world to the concentration camp.” 

Bibliography (Click the link)

“In order for any life to matter, we all have to matter.” - Marcus Luttrell, Navy Seal (ret)

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