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Thread: Why are you interested in TCMA history?

  1. #1
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    Why are you interested in TCMA history?

    I have over 200 TCMA books. I always skip the history part. The reason is simple. No matter how good some ancient TCMA guys were, it has nothing to do with my own TCMA ability. Can someone explain why the TCMA history is interest or important?
    Last edited by YouKnowWho; 05-12-2014 at 07:38 PM.
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  2. #2
    Because, if you are aware that in ancient times, Kung Fu was meant to develop fighting skill; you won't be to hide behind "tradition" as an excuse to practice Kung Fu as just a performance art.
    Quote Originally Posted by YouKnowWho View Post
    This is 100% TCMA principle. It may be used in non-TCMA also. Since I did learn it from TCMA, I have to say it's TCMA principle.
    Quote Originally Posted by YouKnowWho View Post
    We should not use "TCMA is more than combat" as excuse for not "evolving".

    You can have Kung Fu in cooking, it really has nothing to do with fighting!

  3. #3
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    Will you hate when someone makes the following statement in his book (this are exactly the words that I had translated from a book)?

    - My teacher's teacher used to be able to spit out a sword from his mouth and kill his enemy 300 miles away.
    - My teacher used to be able to spit out a sword from his mouth and kill his enemy 300 feet away.
    - I used to be able to spit out a nuts from my mouth and hit on a tree trunk. Since my high blood pressure, I no longer be able to do that.

    If I write a book, I'll include the following:

    - My teacher's teacher could stay in horse stance and finish eating his dinner.
    - My teacher could stay in horse stance and finish watching Beijing opera.
    - I used to be able to stay in horse stance and finish drinking my beer. Since my high blood pressure, I no longer be able to do that.
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  4. #4
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    I like the historical parts because they tend to give us SOME insight into why an art came to be.
    Psalms 144:1
    Praise be my Lord my Rock,
    He trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle !

  5. #5
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    My preference is to study with the old teachers of yore then read about them later.
    When I met Lu Hungping (seminar format) he was already in his late 70's, somewhat hard of hearing but his instruction was worth the short time and effort. I tried to find information about him in TCMA book but could hardly do so. A former teacher (Prof Hou Chi Kwang) heard his name and I believe the 2 met up while in my local area. I add that TCMA history (post 1955- I am guessing here) often leaves out those people "who do not give face" to the present state of affairs so there is a lot of bias in post 1960s exposition of CMA masters. There are people who, although not left out but since they cannot be ignored, very little information is given. Often, informal relationshops tend to be downgraded if not official in knowledge so that often leaves a void by non mentioning of important personages in CMA. This leaves a lot of innuendo to be taken and made up in the absence of true and validated information. This has been my experience when talking with, a few CMA teachers I have had. Again, much stuff is left out and based on my teachers responses, I have validated that modus operandi.

    It beez like dat!

  6. #6
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    By TCMA, you mean TRADITIONAL Chinese Martial Arts, right?

    Here is the definition of 'tradition' according to Merriam-Webster:
    a way of thinking, behaving, or doing something that has been used by the people in a particular group, family, society, etc., for a long time
    : the stories, beliefs, etc., that have been part of the culture of a group of people for a long time
    —used to say that someone has qualities which are like the qualities of another well-known person or group of people from the past
    Note the terms 'long time, and 'from the past'. All tradition means really is a connection to the past so to use the term, you must know your history. Martial myopia has twisted up the term to mean something stagnant, which is really a shame. I think a lot of this comes out of translation error. The term in Chinese - chuantong 传统 - is slightly different. Chuan means summon, propagate, or transmit, which is close. Tong means govern, command, control or unite. Of course, this is a new term, developed in juxtaposition with modern wushu. The real distinction here is between sport and non-sport martial practices. By a strict definition of the word 'traditional' you can argue that modern wushu is in fact traditional because it descends from traditional culture, as do all modern manifestations of martial arts. But that just confuses the nibblers, and I digress...
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  7. #7
    Any history is about who what where and when.

    Of course we are more interested in how in MA.

    Otherwise, they are just anecdotes of who can do what.

    That is nothing to do if we are able to do just who could do that in history.

    There.


  8. #8
    It's important because that's how you begin to determine between fact and fiction. If you study it long and well enough, you will begin to see contradictions or potential signs of it. TCMA history is interesting to study because it is full of hearsay, legends, myths, etc. which make it a challenge for historians to unlock the truth, to figure out where the contradictions are, to answer questions about its link and influence to society at the time. Western history is boring to study because there isn't a whole lot that hasn't already been discovered or proven. There's no puzzle to figure out, no challenge. It's all conveniently available at your fingertips in your grade school history books.

  9. #9
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    Tcma history is interesting to me for the same reason most all other types of world history are. I enjoy reading history


    Tcma history is not relevant to a modern day personal physical conflict.

    As an overall portion of studies history of tcma can be fun to see how progression and development took place,and what influenced those changes.
    For whoso comes amongst many shall one day find that no one man is by so far the mightiest of all.

  10. #10
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    It's interesting in the same way my family history is interesting. I like to see where I came from and get an idea of what the people were like before me.

    I enjoy a good story. If I read about someone spitting swords out of their mouths and killing enemies I'd enjoy it for being a good story.

    Beyond that, it doesn't really impact on me at all.

  11. #11
    In some ways, it can be useful to know the history, as you can see what aspects are progressions for fighting, and what aspects are progressions for other things.

  12. #12

    Nice Post....

    Greetings,

    History can help connect one to a tradition in an intimate way. Practice is another. History inspires the practice. That is the message usually. Practice hard and you will achieve something really good.

    I was going to contact YKW to ask if would write a book that defined the throw by its traditional name and included other aliases for that throw. Sometimes, those descriptions can help sensitize the practitioner to other energies involved. This also applies to modern acupuncture. The traditional names give insight to how the chi flows through a particular point. The way that it is now completely sucks.

    One of the best videos to come for Wing Lam Enterprises was the Chin Na video demonstrating the kungs (gongs). I called him at that time to suggest that he continue in that direction. Needless to say, I don't have that kind of pull. The kungs are the backbone of TCMA and are an essential part of its "history".

    Additionally, understand the history of a particular endeavor is not a unique thing. It is found in music, dance, art, the sciences, etc.


    mickey
    Last edited by mickey; 05-21-2014 at 09:14 AM.

  13. #13
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    I'm not a historian, but it is good to understand the context of your art.

    If you want to say gong fu is about fighting and self-defense, and you also train sword and spear, then you aren't being honest with yourself.

    If you want to say gong fu is about traditional battlefield combat, and train with flimsy opera spear and flexible sword, then you aren't being honest with yourself.

    If you want to say that most gong fu isn't entirely applicable to daily needs but is fun and interesting, then you might be honest with yourself.

    Knowing a bit of history also allows one to sniff the bull**** that some schools say to increase their legitimacy, like kenpo schools who claim lineage to the Shaolin temple.
    "I'm a highly ranked officer of his tong. HE is the Dragon Head. our BOSS. our LEADER. the Mountain Lord." - hskwarrior

  14. #14
    Those parts about their histories are another way of saying :
    '''This is ORIGINAL SHAOLIN GONG FU,so you can train without any doubt all the techniques,no bull****.'''''

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Rover View Post
    Those parts about their histories are another way of saying :
    '''This is ORIGINAL SHAOLIN GONG FU,so you can train without any doubt all the techniques,no bull****.'''''
    Yes I think if we replaced the word "history" every time with the word "stories" or "legends" then we might get a better picture.

    So change the question to why are we interested in TCMA stories or legends?

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