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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The Looky Loo Syndrome

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

This involves what can hijack us from our conditioned responses, i.e., how certain aspects of life can hijack even the most serious and best trained professional. It is the trait that governs all species in survival including the human animal, us. It is referred to as the, “Investigatory Reflex.” 

In order to survive, all of nature needs to be acutely aware of immediate changes to the environment, investigating and evaluating these differences for the dangers or opportunities they may present. This is hard wired and so forceful that this reflex supersedes all other operations. So, when in the fight or in self-fense practitioners can be hijacked by the use of unknown and untrained situations and events and techniques, etc., that cause what is referred to as the freeze. 

Whenever a stimulus registered as a change around us, our attention flies to it. If a predator decides you are a target and they apply: Surprise, a flurry of blitz like pummeling about your head and shoulders, a quick and decisive crowding of bodies along with disorienting unbalancing and instant disruption of your structure you will find your mind, attention, being drawn to such methodologies and if your training, sometimes even with appropriate training,  with your attention fully, completely and totally focused on it. 

Lets say this, according to research “Rapid Changes in our Environment” tend to have a very potent effect on us. Our concentration can be pulled aside even with such mundane changes like, i.e., ever wonder why you walked into a room and suddenly forget why? It is possible that your recall is not diminishing but rather a possibility of a different and documented scientifically  reason for that lapse of memory, i.e., waling through a door can cause you to forget because of an abrupt change in your physical surroundings redirects your attention to the new settings and therefore disrupts your memory of it. 

In short, “Our bodily reaction to change is no longer called a reflex. It’s termed the ‘Orienting Response,’ and scores of studies have enlightened us about it.” - Robert Cialdini, Pre-Suasion

Just as another change in thinking, the orienting response extends to things like, respiration, blood flow, skin moisture, and heart rate. Doesn’t that sound familiar, i.e., how adrenal stress-conditions trigger huge changes in our bodies that also affect concentration, perceptions and how we distinguish and act accordingly? 

Take a moment next time you are out on the road headed toward some destination when suddenly the traffic flow slows and you find yourself doing the ‘looky loo’ at some traffic incident. You are working off the human species survival instincts of “Investigatory Reflex” and succumbing to our natural survival “Orienting Response.” Personally, I have tried to resist doing the looky loo and find the pull to turn and look at the incident almost irresistible. Herein lies another factoid that says, we are still connected to and driven by our survival DNA even if we think we live in a time and way that eliminated our exposure to death by Lion, Tiger or Bear.  

In self-defense or self-fense as I take it from Marc MacYoung’s explanation, we must train to what will cause us to investigate and orient and act, i.e., like explained in the OODA process of Colonel Boyd. Lets use a sport system to help explain and understand, i.e., boxing. 

Boxing, like many combative oriented competitive sports, relies on what is termed as, “Feints,” that draw an opponents concentration toward a investigatory reflex of “what the …” so that you are drawn away from one thing to focus on another while that original thing lights you up and knocks you out. I look at it as misdirection similar to what magicians use to fool you attentive processes toward something else while the original process goes on out of your perceptive concentration. 

This is also how I like to explain one facet of what karate-ka and martial artist refer to as a sub-principle called, “The Void.” It is that space between actions that can cause a type of manipulation of an adversary’s mind to focus on a trivial matter while a more serious event takes place. It is to shift a situation or perception to something else - misdirection. This use of void, the space between tempo, cadence or rhythms that triggers our investigatory reflex so that the shift goes to some feature, action or thing so that something else gets in before the brain can even experience it, i.e., observe, orient loop blocking a decision and action process. 

Boxing feints are this very process where the opponents attention is misdirected toward a danger that doesn’t really exist so as to hide the upper cut or some such that rocks the opponents world, knocking them down and out. The void or space or time lapse from original act to feint is about this very thing. Make sense? 

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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