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.

Karate's Self-Justification Syndrome

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

As you already know we practitioners and experts of karate work hard at the principles in our practices and applications to include the philosophy principle. In particular: mind; mushin; non-intention; zanshin and being; non-action, the empty cup; inner peace and that all encompassing non-action. 

All of this, as we imagine, sooner or later takes on the obstacle of one's "ego." Egoistic behaviors all lend toward aggression and violence. Egoistic behaviors tend to rise, like cream on milk, to the top through a process, a very human process, of "Justification - Self-justification." 

In a very, very fundamental way self-justifications come down to how we deal with mistakes in our lives. I quote, "After making a mistake people tend to justify their decisions which lead to the mistake even if they know they did the wrong thing. People try to avoid or diminish the feeling of having done something wrong and try to justify their decisions instead of admitting their error."

It's about an effort on our part to resist behaviors that would lead into and escalate aggressions with their often resulting violence. It comes down to cognitive dissonance, confirmation biases and the resulting self-justifications so our ego's can deal with it in response to our identity, beliefs and concepts of ourselves all contributors to our ego's. 

Our justifications or excuses if you prefer are the ways we justify our actions even when we know they are wrong. We justify our actions and words to alleviate dissonance. Confirmation bias is how we accept such justifications, even when glaringly wrong, so that our dissonance of what is patently wrong vs. what we believe and have as our identities, etc., are what lead us astray. 

I quote, "The confirmation bias is the tendency of people to look at information which supports their current belief or conviction. Doing so can make them find information that supports their case even if there is no evidence, or worse, it can make contradictory evidence look like supporting evidence. But self-justification and the confirmation bias tend to start after a series of decisions, this process is known as the pyramid of choice."

You see, as if you already knew, we then all have choices and that ability is the stronghold of controlling our dissonances, biases and justifications. The more you control your justifications in peace, the greater your ability to control them in stress-conditions and adrenal effects. 

The pyramid, in my concept in karate, is that point where perceptions, beliefs, experiences make my concepts that sit at the top until conflicting information, actions or deeds trigger dissonance. Hopefully, this occurs in training and practice because the delay in the mind during such stress oriented situations could lead to damage. This is where the division begins because we can recognize when self-justifications begin and take a look at how our decisions, if not succumbing to confirmation bias, can either allow us to remain steadfast in our original concept or allow us to modify that concept into a new concept relevant and appropriate to the situation of the moment. 

When we train for conflict we have to consider two or more people being involved, I quote, “… choice as a starting point from where people depart in different directions. For example, suppose there are two similar people with the opportunity to commit a action, one being crime the other not. The top of the pyramid represents the situation where neither of them have yet made a decision, and both have an overview of both options, committing a action or not. 


One person makes a decision which leads that person gradually closer to a situation where a crime could be committed, for example, the person decides to check if there are opportunities to rob you or not. The other person decides to do something honest instead and decides to deescalate and provide an opportunity to stop the other; deescalate; or escape and evade. As both persons go further down the pyramid, their views will become more biased towards their decisions. The person about to commit a crime will be sure that it was the right decision because he or she had no other choice, while the other individual will be more convinced that deescalation, escape and evasion, etc., was the best decision." (Note: modified the original to better fit, somewhat, karate and self-protection)

Humans will more often than not refuse to admit mistakes, errors and just being wrong to hold on to that identity and ego because of the huge discomfort the change would bring especially as it literally is perceived as an attack against the very fabric of that person triggering the self-justifying of preferential beliefs when balanced against the opposite truth to therefore confirm that original belief rather than grow, change and evolve. It is the hardest road to follow when others provide a much easier path that remains comfortable, easy and has worked well in the past - so, why change (a bit of self-justification in this don’t you think?).

Admitting mistakes is not just about learning and evolving and developing oneself, it is about letting go of our ego and creating value in all the myriad things regardless that allow us to progress and to discard fearing that others will see us as weak, vulnerable and open to attack.  

Let me close with on last quote or thought, “Thoughts: Admitting errors can be helpful in nearly all situations. The strongest factor may be that it leads to feedback from other people which lets us learn faster.”

Bibliography (Click the link)

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