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Thread: the arts over the years - what have we learned?

  1. #1
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    the arts over the years - what have we learned?

    the age old debate on what is the proper practice, best technique, and most beneficial training methods has been scattered across the board since the inception of "martial arts" in the ancient past. mankinds individual methods of protecting oneself from extinction be it from man, beast, or outright natural calamity - people have indulged in the concepts of improving physical and mental proficiency to a science which has sprung forth into various trunks, branches, leaves, and nuts. looking back on our martial arts history in our own personal lives and how it began, how we trained over the years, how we haven't, how we have incorporated new ideas to our own personal regime of where our martial arts training has lead us - has our training led us into grander horizons or are we still perfecting the same old form, from the same old dude, from the relative same old time, long ago?? one thing i discovered in all my earthly travels is that the master resides in each and everyone of us, practice is the key - what we practice is what we become, which ultimately is who we are. have you become what you set out to be when you began to practice? i know i have - the martial arts has changed my life for the greater good. my newest fun is rattan short sticks. brought two sets home from mindanao and find myself playing with them alot, interestingly enough i have 3lb iron sticks i use for club juggling that i can now use for stick fighting conditioning. good stuff these... martial arts.

  2. #2
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    In my 35+ years of training and competing and fighting I have learned one simple truth:
    To be a martial artist, to truly understand any MA, one MUST fight and fight often.
    Painters paint, swimmers swim, shooters shoot, and fighters fight.
    There is NO WAY to understand any MA without the pain and "eating bitter" of actually fighting other FIGHTERS that want to take your head off.
    Psalms 144:1
    Praise be my Lord my Rock,
    He trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle !

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    I agree with SR. Without the fighting aspect, one might be called a 'movement' artist but not necessarily a 'martial' artist. By its very nature, the MA journey is not meant to be an easy one, and sparring or fighting is a big part of that. And one must gain experience against all kinds of people from all types of backgrounds, not only within the confines of your own school/system. Complacency, especially during the long developmental period, is to be avoided.

    I'm now in my 40th year of MA since I became serious about it, and though I haven't been able to spar since 2009 (due to an injury I've had since 2005), and I am not a 'fighter' now by any means, in the past I was willing to spar almost anyone. I faced anyone from champion fighters to awkward guys with little to no formal training who nevertheless were wild and eager to take your head off. Many of the latter type were more dangerous than many black belts. It all contributes to your personal experience database. I wouldn't say I ever became a "great fighter", but I certainly learned how I reacted under fire against a variety of opponent types in various environments. I've had my @ss handed to me; I've done the same to others; and I've experienced where neither side could gain any clear advantage. It's not about boasting or being the biggest "bad@ss", but about your own personal journey as a MAist. You learn about your strengths and limitations. Pretty standard, IMO.

    At this point, I continue to train what I can on my own. Because it's an indispensable part of my life, and because I like it. There also has to be an enjoyment factor along with other perceived benefits, otherwise you won't continue doing it beyond a certain point. I'm not ashamed to say that, over the years, I've also come to appreciate forms practice more now than before.

    What system(s) you do matters less than what you've put into it/them. Every journey is different, and even within the same system/school, you won't (or shouldn't) be the same as others, because your individual paths will be different.
    Last edited by Jimbo; 03-10-2016 at 07:47 AM.

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    Agreed, but there's more to fight than just sparring partners

    Quote Originally Posted by Jimbo View Post
    I'm now in my 40th year of MA since I became serious about it, and though I haven't been able to spar since 2009 (due to an injury I've had since 2005), and I am not a 'fighter' now by any means, in the past I was willing to spar almost anyone.
    Your fight, Jimbo, is within now. Ultimately, that's the hardest fight of all. There are all of these metaphors about how the greatest enemy is yourself, but for any lifelong martial artist, that means coping with aging, the loss of faculties like speed, endurance and quick recovery, the accumulation of scars. That's why I venerate the seniors, the practitioners who have more than a half century of life. They survived. Especially now that I've joined that community, and see so many of my old classmates who have gave up, moved on, and can only talk about their glory days, I have the utmost respect for elder practitioners. Without their physicality, they only have their martial wisdom to rely upon, and that's the real essence of it.
    Gene Ching
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    To echo Gene and Jimbo:
    Because of health issues I too can't do full contact sparring anymore and light contact is, well, not for me.
    The last few years have been spent "refining" and "polishing" my Art.
    I am no longer a fighter but I am BECOMINg a martial artist.
    As Gene said, it is far harder but also far more rewarding.
    No longer the domination of others, but the much harder task of domination of self.
    Psalms 144:1
    Praise be my Lord my Rock,
    He trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle !

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    Great points, Gene and SR!

    Yes, I too am finally becoming a martial artist. I've been forced to examine things from a different perspective, and my understanding is becoming much deeper than ever before. It's easy to take things for granted when one is young without any chronic issues. But also, in many ways I'm also becoming aware of how much I DON'T know. And while I've always had respect for MA elders' decades of experiences, I've gained much more respect for people with special challenges who train. If there's a deeper underlying reason for everything, then maybe this challenge of mine was to help to accelerate my maturity level in certain areas.

    I also want to point out that, like the title 'master', the term 'martial ARTIST' is a term that is inappropriately applied to many people. Just because one has taken up and/or practices a MA does not in itself make one a 'MAist'. In the same way that simply buying art paper and pencils and doodling or copying others' work doesn't make one an artist. It can take years, even decades, for someone to truly start becoming an artist.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GeneChing View Post
    There are all of these metaphors about how the greatest enemy is yourself, but for any lifelong martial artist, that means coping with aging, the loss of faculties like speed, endurance and quick recovery, the accumulation of scars. That's why I venerate the seniors, the practitioners who have more than a half century of life. They survived. Especially now that I've joined that community, and see so many of my old classmates who have gave up, moved on, and can only talk about their glory days, I have the utmost respect for elder practitioners. Without their physicality, they only have their martial wisdom to rely upon, and that's the real essence of it.
    i seem to remember some metaphors about "the best fighter has no need to fight" and "train young what you can still train old".

    Quote Originally Posted by sanjuro_ronin View Post
    In my 35+ years of training and competing and fighting I have learned one simple truth:
    To be a martial artist, to truly understand any MA, one MUST fight and fight often.
    Painters paint, swimmers swim, shooters shoot, and fighters fight.
    There is NO WAY to understand any MA without the pain and "eating bitter" of actually fighting other FIGHTERS that want to take your head off.
    but wait...

    Quote Originally Posted by sanjuro_ronin View Post
    Because of health issues I too can't do full contact sparring anymore and light contact is, well, not for me.
    because of injuries sustained fighting in attempts to prove your martial art or because your martial arts ability failed to give you confidence to win a fight?
    The last few years have been spent "refining" and "polishing" my Art.
    which you could have done before sustaining injuries that inhibit your ability to fight?
    I am no longer a fighter but I am becoming a martial artist.
    glad you clarified that because i was under the impression you had to fight in order to be a martial artist. whew. *wipes forehead*
    As Gene said, it is far harder but also far more rewarding.
    what is more rewarding - proving yourself a martial artist long enough to become unfit to fight before becoming a true martial artist or simply focusing on being a martial artist altogether?
    No longer the domination of others, but the much harder task of domination of self.
    very true and i am very happy you have discovered this truth for yourself - being a womanizing spartan warrior only lasts so long.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jimbo View Post
    What system(s) you do matters less than what you've put into it/them. Every journey is different, and even within the same system/school, you won't (or shouldn't) be the same as others, because your individual paths will be different.
    ditto.

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    is it just me or are health issues a politically correct cop-out accepting you are a *bleep*?? question... does a person who trains to be a martial artist without trying to prove to everyone he is make him more fit to fight when the need arises?? i mean, aspiring martial artists spend half their life fighting to prove their martial arts ability, only to be injured in the process and how they cannot full contact spar mcfight anymore - does this mean that now, once they realized they are physically incapable of fighting, they can be stomped by someone who was wise enough not to injure himself prioving to be a fighter?? example... so and so trained 35+ years in a style, fighting, injuring and being injured and another so and so spent the same amount of time being a martial artist, but felt no need to prove his art: who wins? the guy who fought often and is crippled or the guy who has yet to fight?
    Last edited by uki; 03-10-2016 at 01:32 PM.

  9. #9
    martial arts helped me understand aggression and help me identify malicious psychopathic behaviour in real life, since white collar jobs have a lot of covert aggression

    25th generation inner door disciple of Chen Style Practical Wombat Method
    Officially certified by Ethiopian Orthodox patriarch Abune Mathias
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    Quote Originally Posted by bawang View Post
    martial arts helped me understand aggression and help me identify malicious psychopathic behaviour in real life, since white collar jobs have a lot of covert aggression
    martial arts helped me simply live true to being myself - it is almost a superpower these days... being true to yourself.

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    Quote Originally Posted by uki View Post
    who wins? the guy who fought often and is crippled or the guy who has yet to fight?
    - Soldiers die in the battle field. They had fun of fighting all their life.
    - Scholars die in their bedroom. They have never had the fun of fighting.

    When you take your opponent down successfully under your knee, you will smile in your dream for the next 3 nights. Even money won't be able to buy such fun for you.
    http://johnswang.com

    More opinion -> more argument
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    Quote Originally Posted by YouKnowWho View Post
    - Soldiers die on the battle field. They had fun of fighting all their life.
    - Scholars die in their bedroom. They have never had the fun of fighting.

    When you take your opponent down successfully under your knee, you will smile in your dream for the next 3 nights. Even money won't be able to buy such fun for you.
    this all of course is the reasoning and wisdom advice from someone looking at only one lifetime, yes?

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    Quote Originally Posted by YouKnowWho View Post
    Even money won't be able to buy such fun for you.
    hahahaha... i got plenty of **** to offer for free that even the most skilled martial artists will not accept.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by uki View Post
    i mean, aspiring martial artists spend half their life fighting to prove their martial arts ability, only to be injured in the process and how they cannot full contact spar mcfight anymore - does this mean that now, once they realized they are physically incapable of fighting, they can be stomped by someone who was wise enough not to injure himself prioving to be a fighter?? example... so and so trained 35+ years in a style, fighting, injuring and being injured and another so and so spent the same amount of time being a martial artist, but felt no need to prove his art: who wins? the guy who fought often and is crippled or the guy who has yet to fight?

    The day comes for every fighter when he can no longer fight, there is no shame in that. One who practices martial arts his whole life and never tested himself is inexcusable, shame to him, his teachers and his system.

    Does a musician learn music theory his whole life, read sheet music and drill scales, never to actually play a song? What was the point? Who was he fooling?
    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!

  15. #15
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    uki:

    There is absolutely nothing wrong with seeking to improve yourself and test yoursel/your art when you are young. It is, after all, MARTIAL art. I originally got into martial arts not because I was fascinated by the art or was seeking some kind of enlightenment; it was because I was in a time when I had an urgent need to learn to protect myself. Sure there is beauty in the art. But when you have an immediate need, that matters little, doesn't it?

    Let me also say that a certain amount of aggression is normal for (many) young males, and so long as it's channeled in certain acceptable ways, it can be constructive for the development of an individual. When that natural tendency is stymied, as it is today, it's only suppressed. Nowadays, almost everyone wants to coddle and shelter their kids. This suffocating desire to suppress this normal tendency is ONE reason why there are so many more shootings at schools and elsewhere. This suppression cannot eliminate it, so the steam (aggression) that might have been released naturally, builds up until it explodes in a total passive-aggressive manner. In times past, when someone was bullied and finally stood up and fought for himself, more often than not, once the fight was over, it was over. Win or lose, the former 'victim' gained a degree of respect. That's no longer the case. Because the loser dosen't learn how to deal with any natural "code", he now comes back with a gun. Or the aggression plays out online, without ever coming face-to-face. This chicken**** behavior has now become the norm, especially among the younger generation.

    BTW, my own injury that affected ME was NOT MA-related. So that kind of puts the kibosh on the argument that emphasizing the martial aspect of MA will necessarily lead to ruin as you enter middle age.

    Anyway, good thread, uki.
    Last edited by Jimbo; 03-10-2016 at 03:40 PM.

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