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#140905 - 05/09/05 12:39 PM Defining Karate
Victor Smith Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/01/00
Posts: 3219
Loc: Derry, NH
With a new forum dedicated to karate, it might be best to first investigate what karate is.

The term karate originally arose to cover a rather specific group of Okinawan teaching practices.

Those practices were extended when a very limited version of them where taught in the Okinawan school systems.

Then another series of variations began when karate practices were exported to Japan beginning in the 1920ís. In short order styles were created, uniforms and rank adopted, and instructors with little traditional karate training experience creating systems, sometimes under Okinawan supervision and sometimes not, sometimes with indigenous Japanese arts thrown in. In many senses those karate practices were very different from the Okinawan origins.

Time passed, WWII intervened destroying many of the seniors in karate, and after the war new standards and practices entered both the Okinawan and Japanese strains.

Additionally those arts were taught to the occupying forces of Japan and Okinawa and a new migration took place. Further divergence from original intent, more other practices being adopted and shuffled in, etc.

Till karate becomes a generic name that may have almost nothing to do with the variations off of original practices.

If one had to pick a generic description of what Karate ought to describe, the closest model might be, systems of training that include the study and practice of kata as their central training tool. Likewise a system of instruction that is designed to be covered in about two decades of training (give or take a decade or two) before one truly has a basic grasp of what the system involved has to offer.

Other valuable systems of martial study, traditional and non-traditional do exist, but if they donít fit the above definition, there is question whether they are truly describing karate.

Personally I donít like the every tissue is Kleenex definitions that are often given as karate.

Based on my suggested version, much that uses the karate label does not fit a reasonable definition and something else should be applied.

Victor Smith
bushi no te isshinryu

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#140906 - 05/09/05 02:13 PM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Victor Smith]
Kintama Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/17/05
Posts: 2724
Loc: Massachusetts
Nicely put, Victor.
I'd like to add: Like any other field of study and practice, there must be purpose and intent.
I find it hard to define Karate without mentioning 'Self-Defense' and 'Self-Improvement'.

Purpose and intent itself, has lineage.

I believe, and correct me if I'm off-base, that the intent of Karate, was to provide a Way (path) for a practioner to aquire a method of self-defence thru a process of incorporating into character:
* self-realization (awareness of mind),
* strengthening of body and ever-improving technique,
* development of spirit (via respect,morals and determination).

EVERYTHING has a predecessor and successor. Each successor has the shadow of it's former self.

If Karate's purpose is 'Self-Defense' thru character development,
then Karate's predecessor would have been
"Self-Preservation" thru tried and tested life or death combat.

Using popularity as a guidline, it seems Karate's successor will be for Sport...

from
"Self-Preservation" thru combat.
to
"Self-Defense" thru character.
to
"Self-Betterment" thru sport.

I don't think of the past, original and present form of Karate as separate and distinct...they overlap and fade into each other depending on the person, their experiences and their training.

That's just the way I see Karate...It's only one opinion.
-Ed

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#140907 - 05/10/05 06:36 AM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Kintama]
SANCHIN31 Offline
Former Moderator

Registered: 12/26/04
Posts: 3783
Loc: Arkansas, U.S.
Those are good definitions of karate that everyone should consider when they call theirself training in karate. Good job!
_________________________
Skinny,Bald,and Handsome! Fightingarts Warrior of the year

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#140908 - 05/10/05 09:08 AM Re: Defining Karate [Re: SANCHIN31]
Bushi_no_ki Offline
Veteran

Registered: 05/03/05
Posts: 1667
Loc: POM, Monterey CA
Well, lets add to the definition by bringing the "do" suffix into it. Karate is a way of life. It's about dedicating yourself to improvement every day of your life. It's about higher ideals and principles. It ceases to be Karate when you train to learn how to "kick butt".

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#140909 - 05/10/05 05:03 PM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Bushi_no_ki]
Sanchin Offline
Member

Registered: 03/20/05
Posts: 174
Quote:

Well, lets add to the definition by bringing the "do" suffix into it. Karate is a way of life. It's about dedicating yourself to improvement every day of your life. It's about higher ideals and principles. It ceases to be Karate when you train to learn how to "kick butt".




Karate is still karate if you train to kick butt, karate is a very real and brutal method of kicking butt.
_________________________
"Everything is already, and always will be given" - Our New Pope. B

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#140910 - 05/10/05 09:17 PM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Sanchin]
Victor Smith Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/01/00
Posts: 3219
Loc: Derry, NH
From my perspective its not about 'Do' or about kicking butt.

The use of the Japanese concept of Do applies there is Jutsu, a duality that was not the original way. The development of te into karate was non-verbal. Sure it bettered ones life and sure the techniques could break an attacker, but the original appears to be mostly non-verbal, without any wrap around vocabulary.

Dan Smith of the Seibukan has written that the original teachings didn't even include a techincal term for punch or block, just a general term for 'put the hand here', as you were shown.

What karate is, is not simply defined as one thing or another. Just as how it is taught really depends on the demands of the time and the place it is being taught.

The most problemetical thing about using simple descriptive terms for what karate is, is the fact those terms make you loose sight of the entire picture.

I really think its a shame that so many Japanese concept were adopted on Okinawa, a gradual effect of Japan controlling the education system for 100 years.

The duality in japan of kenjutsu becoming kendo is quiant for those that really worry about swords.

But karate is simpler and vaster than the terms.

The only real binding tradition I hold to is 1)kata and 2)time to really study.
_________________________
victor smith bushi no te isshinryu offering free instruction for 30 years

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#140911 - 05/10/05 10:58 PM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Victor Smith]
BuDoc Offline
The doctor will see you now

Registered: 05/03/05
Posts: 1067
Loc: USA and Abroad
Once again Mr. Smith, you have eloquently put to type thoughts that I could never convey.

There are some really thoughtful replies here on a subject that is nearly impossible to define.

Thank you all.

Page
_________________________
Medical Advisor for the Somolian National Sumo Team

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#140912 - 05/10/05 11:25 PM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Sanchin]
Camilo_kun Offline
Newbie

Registered: 05/10/05
Posts: 19
Loc: Chile
Quote:

Karate is still karate if you train to kick butt, karate is a very real and brutal method of kicking butt.



Man!!! no, no!!
I'm a begginer of karate budo shotokai, and all that i learn is that karate is for my spirit, mint and soul. I hope never have to use karate for fight...
All you people that use karate for fight, for kick ass and stuff are really practicing a "american influenced karate" (in other words, not the real karate). In shotokai they teach us like Master Egami, the karate is for auto knowledge and confidence.
I think that Budo Shotokai (and shotokan) are the real Japanese Karate. The real essence of karate is not for "kick ass" you know?
_________________________
I speak spanish, sorry my bad spelling :P

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#140913 - 05/10/05 11:51 PM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Camilo_kun]
BuDoc Offline
The doctor will see you now

Registered: 05/03/05
Posts: 1067
Loc: USA and Abroad
Camilo, you are probably going to get alot of responses to this. Here is mine, for what it's worth.

"Real" karate as developed on Okinawa was designed to quickly and effectively disable/destroy your opponent. There was no concern about uplifting your spirit or becoming a better person.

Becoming a better person, physical fitness, honing the spirit, self confidence, etc. are all very nice side-effects.

Karate today has evolved greatly. It is many things to many people. It has as many different philosophical and physical applications as there are practioners. When you boil it down and distil it, in it's simplest form it begs the question, can you defeat your opponent?

Achieving peace,tranquility,harmony while exercising the mind and soul, can be accomplished through a multitude of physical tasks. Why then do we learn to fight? Why not peace and harmony and tranquility through tree climbing?

Good luck in your Shotokan/Shotokai training. I think you will find that the Japanification of Karate will help you find the things you are looking for. However I am certain that most of the "real" karate has been removed.

Page
_________________________
Medical Advisor for the Somolian National Sumo Team

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#140914 - 05/11/05 12:08 AM Re: Defining Karate [Re: BuDoc]
Camilo_kun Offline
Newbie

Registered: 05/10/05
Posts: 19
Loc: Chile
Yes you are right, about karate- do . I practice karate- budo , total different. The "bu" is like a magical word
_________________________
I speak spanish, sorry my bad spelling :P

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#140915 - 05/11/05 12:21 AM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Camilo_kun]
SANCHIN31 Offline
Former Moderator

Registered: 12/26/04
Posts: 3783
Loc: Arkansas, U.S.
Okinawan influenced karate is the "real" karate ,not Japanese. Budo or no Budo.
_________________________
Skinny,Bald,and Handsome! Fightingarts Warrior of the year

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#140916 - 05/11/05 12:57 AM Re: Defining Karate [Re: SANCHIN31]
Camilo_kun Offline
Newbie

Registered: 05/10/05
Posts: 19
Loc: Chile
Gichin Funakoshi (Japanese, 1868-1957) is the father of the karate do, he was a studen of Yasutsune Azato (Okinawa).
_________________________
I speak spanish, sorry my bad spelling :P

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#140917 - 05/11/05 01:25 AM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Victor Smith]
Kintama Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/17/05
Posts: 2724
Loc: Massachusetts
other thoughts:
A major shift in training method when Karate was so-named, was from individual training to mass public training. It was a relatively fast, forced and unnatural change instead of the Art developing in it's own time and place.
And shortly following, a similar magnitude of training method shift after WWII, where profit became a factor of training method for the first time.

If that is fair to say, then could these shifts only describe mainstream and say nothing about an individual practitioner?

Is it possible to sift through the fog and realize the essence thru given kata, rigerous study and time? Isn't there an element of the Art that will never be obtainable since our time and place is vastly different from those with the original intent? In order to survive, an Art must be impervious to changes in time and place... so,
wouldn't that mean we have to pursue our own intent?

I think that is where the real value of any quest in Art resides... just like in life: It's not about the destination, it's about the journey there.

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#140918 - 05/11/05 02:11 AM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Kintama]
butterfly Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 3012
Loc: Torrance, CA
Victor Smith and Kintama,

If we take Victor's definition as quintessential, what about all of Karate's lesser siblings that have lineage but trace their ancestory through other Japanese connections? Isn't karate's definition large enough to house, no matter how extended from home, the lesser stepchildren of Okinawan Karate?

What you have listed as definition and characteristic of Karate might be a listing of what is seen by most, but not all. If Karate is a grouping of rules for a work of great art, sometimes the heart doesn't lie within a particular piece, but with the viewer. And the truths that are exposed are therefore determined in their own time, and in their own place, specifically for those who look at those works of art.

Time changes many things, including our appreciation and understanding of artistic endeavors. Therefore, the viewer may illicit a different understanding and appreciate the work differently than his predescessors since his needs are now different. But just because the newer patron of the arts puts the blocks together differently, or uses fewer blocks to produce his own work, can you not say that this is not the same art? A rose by any other name smells as sweet.

Regards,

-B

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#140919 - 05/11/05 02:14 AM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Camilo_kun]
Kintama Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/17/05
Posts: 2724
Loc: Massachusetts
Quote:

Quote:

Karate is still karate if you train to kick butt, karate is a very real and brutal method of kicking butt.



Man!!! no, no!!
I'm a begginer of karate budo shotokai, and all that i learn is that karate is for my spirit, mint and soul. I hope never have to use karate for fight...
All you people that use karate for fight, for kick ass and stuff are really practicing a "american influenced karate" (in other words, not the real karate). In shotokai they teach us like Master Egami, the karate is for auto knowledge and confidence.
I think that Budo Shotokai (and shotokan) are the real Japanese Karate. The real essence of karate is not for "kick ass" you know?




wow...I just read this. I don't want to derail...so I'll just say, read up on your Karate history cam_kun, focus on the history right before the Japanese come into the picture...THAT would be your 'real karate'.
_________________________
Boris the Irresistable Monstrosity.

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#140920 - 05/11/05 05:47 AM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Kintama]
Victor Smith Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/01/00
Posts: 3219
Loc: Derry, NH
Several further thoughts.

When I began my definition of karate (kata and time) I didn't draw lines that it was just the Okinawan versions, trying to find a common ground for discussion.

I don't believe trying to distinguish that Okinawan is good and say Japanese (or American) is bad, has relevance. There are many different flavors within my definition.

But at the same time I avoid additional distinctions. like the 'Do' definition, even though many on Okinawan have adopted it, simply because outside of verbage I don't really believe it applies to say any of the Japanese systems.

For those that belive karate is a 'karate-do', or way of betterment, they have a lot of reconciling to do with the actual actions of those who claim to be '-do'.

I accept ALL karate, focusing on kata study and/or a great amount of time to understand any of the approaches, is a tool to better the human spirit, become more efficient as a means to drop an opponent with different visions how the tool may be used, and a whole lot more.

Karate really represents innumerable layers of study, self-actualization of mind and body, and many other things.
_________________________
victor smith bushi no te isshinryu offering free instruction for 30 years

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#140921 - 05/11/05 08:01 AM Re: Defining Karate [Re: butterfly]
Kintama Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/17/05
Posts: 2724
Loc: Massachusetts
butterfly, how does Victor's description exclude any practice...(kata & time)? Are there versions of Karate which do not have kata? If they don't have kata, is it really Karate?

also, I understand your point and I was not trying to distinguish between any versions of practice... I was trying to define Karate thru it's intent, which (in my opinion) is based on the individual.

Instead of everyone trying to come to a concensus (we will not) of what Karate is, maybe we simply give our own descriptions...and the total sum of our answers will be closer to the actual definition?

It would be unfortunate if this thread went into a spiraling debate...what would that say about us as students of our study?


only one opinion.

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#140922 - 05/11/05 10:19 AM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Kintama]
nenipp Offline
Veteran

Registered: 04/13/04
Posts: 1205
I call my training karate, if someone claims it's not, I wouldn't mind.
If someone on the other hand chooses to call their own training karate, I won't try to refuse them the right to do so, whatever their training looks like.
I mean it's just a name, what's the big deal (if there is any)?

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#140923 - 05/11/05 12:10 PM Re: Defining Karate [Re: nenipp]
Victor Smith Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/01/00
Posts: 3219
Loc: Derry, NH
Nenipp,

What Names Mean

In answer to your question why canít I choose to call what I practice/teach as I wish, the answer is in the reason one names anything, clear communications

Ben Franklin in the movie 1776 made the point while you might call an Ox a Bull, and the Ox might enjoy the title, but he would rather have restored what he is missing instead of the name.

But names to mean something. I one has created something they believe has worth and value, and I assume it does, why pick a name from something else to describe it.

Itís like Iíve seen plenty of Tae Kwon Do and Tang Soo Do Moo Duk Kwan schools in towns advertise they teach multiple arts (including karate) when in reality they only teach their art, and are using the names to pull in the gullible public that doesnít understand the distinction involved. I could care less about the public, itís always craveat emptor (let the buyer beware) anyway, but it is insulting claiming that which you are not to those that practice the art youíre not doing.

The simple definition for karate (kata and time) I used can cover a very wide variety of training and answers, but itís not an arbitrary one. The major issue isnít kata, the heart, its time, the soul of karate training.

If somebody creates a new system of training, even if they create a whole bunch of kata with it, and desire to duplicate karateís aims, it would still take decades to prove they were karate. Because the subtle layers of training take a very long time to address. Itís why I donít take new black belts and make them instructors, they donít really know enough. And unless youíve trained for decades and have taught people for decades, itís really difficult to explain where the training leads to those who donít have the same time in the art.

So a solid definition of karate leads to somewhat clearer communications as discussion ensues.

And after all calling an Ox a Bull doesnít make it a Bull after all.
Calling some set of training karate may feel good, but I truly question that is the correct name,

IMVHO
_________________________
victor smith bushi no te isshinryu offering free instruction for 30 years

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#140924 - 05/11/05 03:50 PM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Kintama]
butterfly Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 3012
Loc: Torrance, CA
Kintama,
Ah...so again the question would be kata and the definition of kata. The kata I have seen has been manyfold and some would insist that shadow boxing and other solo exercises could be considered kata.

I have seen kata and its changes as dictated by other styles. So if kata is malleable and has different aspects and considerations within different styles of karate, can kata (and then of course, which kata) be held as a the main characteristic defining karate?

Some katas have changed little, and then some a lot (note Shotokan's take on things). And then there are other katas that have been made recently for certain more modern styles of karate (Enshin Karate for instance). And then of course the Chinese progenitors of the Okinawan katas. Which versions have more truth? And which training model would one go for to learn the defense side of kata. Could Bunkai be provided sans kata as discrete movements per application and then be drilled in this manner alone? Wouldn't these be subdivisions of kata with actual utility in mind?

Just some questions.

Warmest regards,
B

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#140925 - 05/11/05 04:43 PM Re: Defining Karate [Re: butterfly]
Victor Smith Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/01/00
Posts: 3219
Loc: Derry, NH
Butterfly,

You might want to ponder a different answer.
Bishop reports that the groups on Okinawa which teach Te(Ti) as opposed to karate, and have no kata tradition whatever (in the sense of Okinawan style kata), have mostly adopted to teach karate kata, but have made no attempt to rename their teaching as karate.

Seems to suggest the name should not be changed just for popularity.
_________________________
victor smith bushi no te isshinryu offering free instruction for 30 years

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#140926 - 05/11/05 11:32 PM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Victor Smith]
butterfly Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 3012
Loc: Torrance, CA
Victor,
This, then, can be looked at from another perspective, using your analogy, and said that not all karate that does not emphasize kata can still consider itself karate.

By this I mean, if a choice of using kata as an academic source is not necessarily a constituent of calling itself karate, then what are the characteristics of karate, despite the title anyone gives it? Even its own members?

If others use kata as practice but do not consider themselves karate, does that still mean that those who do not emphasize kata but still consider themselves karate are any less worthy of that title?

In any case, this is just a gentle question coming from someone who lacks the finesse to decipher bunkai and who practices other kata that leave very little implied. Perhaps I was never given the chance to seek the spectactular in kata...and at my age wouldn't do so now.

Warmest and humblest regards,
B

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#140927 - 05/11/05 11:53 PM Re: Defining Karate [Re: butterfly]
Victor Smith Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/01/00
Posts: 3219
Loc: Derry, NH
Butterfly,

The practice of kata from its Okinawan origins isn't really arbitrary, and from the karate perspective just practicing the techniques is loosing a great part of the path.

IMVHO the central facet of kata has nothing to do with application, which is just a way to take anything and make it work anytime.

Rather kata practice is to develop advanced body mechanics and energy release, and then use those advancing studies in the application mechanics.

I don't suggest the Okinawan approach (which is about the only true parallel to many of the Chinese arts that I truly see) is the only answer.

It's just that an instructor can patiently share a signature movement style, craft the student to higher and higher levels of technique, and then work to move that understanding to the applicaions.

I've seen many ways, but personally the path if kata integtated with the whole range of answers is where I see karate residing.

And when you begin to analyze kata technique potential, from macro to micro to fractal analysis of the technique potential, there really is little need to go outside.

For example almost the entire basic aikido curricula is present in one kata, Chinto, not to suggest it's not present in the rest either.

Or effective defense against today's favorite, the shoot, simply learning how to apply the strike from Seisan to sheer the ridge of knuckles into the eye orbit and upper sinus cavities of someone trying the shoot is one of many effective answers.

The reason the path of kata is so often misunderstood and changed is people weren't willing to learn the system in depth, so they go to answer 'B'.

Of course as I define karate the path I've described is hardly universal, but I've found it within many Okinawan disciplines. For those that look at things differently, fine, retention of kata as a tool, if nothing else, still binds the traditions together.

Pleasantly,
_________________________
victor smith bushi no te isshinryu offering free instruction for 30 years

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#140928 - 05/12/05 12:21 AM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Victor Smith]
butterfly Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 3012
Loc: Torrance, CA
Victor,
As preface, I hope you won't take anything I say, or have said, as irritatingly contentious, this is not my intent.

And I understand that one shouldn't throw out the baby with the bathwater, yet I do not believe one should hold to tradition simply because this is the way it has always been done.

There are no 100% answers and we all are subject to our own experience. When I look at the stars I see a myriad of pictures, whether others see these things or not is not my concern. Nor can I ordain that everyone looking at the stars see anything at all but bright spots in a night sky. But when others say things are apparent in kata and have produced defensive techniques that may or may not have been intended by the founders of that kata....gun disarms for instance (no guns, but yes there were knives, several hundered years ago). Then, I believe, that movement, an open mind and the influence of their training led them to this "bunkai." If kata was a part of it, great! But if it was not, and other training led them to the same point, also great!

I can only judge from the outside what is karate. And that means terminology, a lineage (no matter how far stretched), and a similarity of movement and technique. This is despite kata. If I saw two individuals sparring and one was a kungfu player and another a karate man...I think I could tell the difference from the bag of tricks both would reach into. There may be overlap, but there is still distinction. This would be true of any other individuals sparring from different traditions.

The exception might be the more modern karate players that have gone to kickboxing and kickboxers coming from MT. There is a merger in process now about technical background. Some would call this evolution, others would call it something much worse. But whatever it is, it is occuring now in our modern world.

However, if you trace back technique, it will either be karate or it won't.

Regards,

B

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#140929 - 05/12/05 12:17 PM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Victor Smith]
nenipp Offline
Veteran

Registered: 04/13/04
Posts: 1205
Victor Smith,

thank you for your reply!
I see where you are coming from and respect your opinion of course, but for my own part cannot feel that it matters much.

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#140930 - 05/12/05 02:36 PM Re: Defining Karate [Re: nenipp]
Multiversed Offline
Banned

Registered: 03/11/03
Posts: 642
Loc: Sa, Tx. USA
I agree wholeheartedly with Victor's comments and understand what Butterfly is trying to say. You don't need kata to learn to fight and karate the term is now a very personal or relative idea. Here's my take.

Kara-Te is a MMA, in the purest sense of the term. If you're speaking of just Ti or Te, basically perpetuated in essence by exponents of Motobu Ryu (GotenTi) then you're speaking of an art that is primarily influenced by Okinawan indigenous fighting intermingled with chin-na. If you look at the other contributing factors which help to complete karate, you'll see that they both use prearranged solo and partner forms which they call quan/kuen or kata.

If you're speaking of karate or even it's father system tode then you must mention the importance kata play in the transmission, mind-body mnemonic training and lineage preservation. Ti has prearranged sequences and kihon drills which are used to transmit its lessons. Kata does not need a partner, but partner drills are also kata.

If I could add, karate is kata, time AND heritage. It's a direct line to a time not so long ago when a peaceful people created a barbaric fighting method that was joined with the ideals of Confucianism and Buddhism. The daoist reality of the polar opposites created an artform and self-preservation science/art which would survive until now, even if it is pale a represenation of what it was or could be.

That is just too extraordinary to comprehend. This small chain of islands, inhabited by well adjusted people, happy with their plight in existence yet surrounded by others who would destroy, take and remake in their image, manage to create something bigger then any Japanese Budo or Chinese Chuan Fa. Genius, pure and simple-- that's my karate definition.

The "Hybrid Vigor Theory" applies not only to genetics, but all things.

I'd like to thank those infinitely adept and intelligent masters who made this all possible. I'll try to live up to my end of the bargain as a representative of their (and now my) MA. That's what karate means to me.

Great discussion and have a great weekend!!!

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#140931 - 05/12/05 02:52 PM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Multiversed]
BuDoc Offline
The doctor will see you now

Registered: 05/03/05
Posts: 1067
Loc: USA and Abroad
Hybrid Vigor Theory...nice!


Page
_________________________
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#140932 - 05/12/05 03:46 PM Re: Defining Karate [Re: BuDoc]
Kintama Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/17/05
Posts: 2724
Loc: Massachusetts
To refresh my memory...Hybrid Vigor is if we have XXyy and xxYY then the resulting hybrid would be XxYy making it stronger than it's parent parts?

Selective cross-breeding like racehorses. Makes sense.

The problem is, everybody since the 1960's thinks they are qualified to be a crossbreeder in MA. So now, all we have left is different strains of MMA and a few thouroughbreds. Some were more qualified and complete to mix than others.

oh man, when ingredients get thin and you start introducing water instead of milk, it just goes wrong... look what has happened to some of the overbread dogs (the ones that just shake and pee on themselves). lol

You had a great read in your post MV...but it's depressing at the same time when I extrapolated what you are saying into the present.

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#140933 - 05/12/05 04:04 PM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Kintama]
butterfly Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 3012
Loc: Torrance, CA
Kintama,

I understand what you and Multiverse and Victor are saying. But if we use this genetic model as a conceit to look at modern karate and all its subdivisions, you still have to look at the individual and see what he/she gets out of it.

Racehorses might be the soup de jour, but you might need a plowhorse some time. Or perhaps these are all obsolete considerations and the needs of today are not the needs of yesterday.

I actually don't disagree with anyone's criteria for defining karate. And am more impressed and glad that the likes of you and Victor and Multiverse are "personally" happy and satisfied with their art. This is in itself a positive.

I am happy as well and I don't seek to change that which I have learned, but personally, I would like to understand more and mold myself into a better technician. This means that I look outside the box, as well as re-evaulating all that I have learned within the box (there are still discoveries a'plenty within karate). I am selfish, I wish I could learn and practice more than I have time to do so in a modern, busy world.

But I appreciate the civil communication on this thread.

Warmest and most humble regards,

B

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#140934 - 05/12/05 04:59 PM Re: Defining Karate [Re: butterfly]
Kintama Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/17/05
Posts: 2724
Loc: Massachusetts
whoa! a couple of corrections and disclaimers. lol

Be real butterfly, you know the backgrounds. I have less than 1 good decade of training as an adult, no formal teaching... my experience is not groupable in with 'the likes' of Victor and MV's experience.

don't do that to me, bruh. lol

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#140935 - 05/12/05 05:52 PM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Kintama]
butterfly Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 3012
Loc: Torrance, CA
No disclaimers necessary. I have been practing 20 years + and feel like a kid sometimes, despite turning 40 this year. The amount of knowledge I have gained still leaves me far behind others and I often feel my ignorance. So you grope around to find more information, just like everyone else.

The best part of practicing is still finding out new things in Karate, the MA in general, and the rewards of self-discovery.

That's ultimately, when the forums work their best, that I enjoy the most. That and pleasantly meeting people walking the same path.

-B

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#140936 - 05/12/05 06:49 PM Re: Defining Karate [Re: butterfly]
shoshinkan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/10/05
Posts: 2662
Loc: UK
defining karate................thats a tough one.

I can only define the art as i see and live it so here goes.........


My definition changes with time, partially through inexpierience (me and instructors), partly through ignorance and partly through me growing up.

Karate was a martial sport at first, ie I trained to compete - be the best.

then I questioned the art, it wasnt 'effective' in real life and some of the 'characters' in the art were not as they seemed, so I left it alone.............

some cross training and growing up on my part and karate now means to me............

a journey of self discovery, a method of life preservation I can research and practise till the day I die.

The awnsers are all in the art if we look hard enough and maintain the begineers mind.

and yes I am rather inspired by a recent weeks training with someone who got karate from the source (okinawa) and didnt change it.

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#140937 - 05/12/05 08:28 PM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Multiversed]
Victor Smith Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/01/00
Posts: 3219
Loc: Derry, NH
Hi Bryan,

I agree with you, heritage must be included with kata and time.

All arts change over time. Those that find their path with karate are sharing older traditions and the funny thing is the more somebody jumps up and down look at what I've discovered (pick any art) the more it was already there, just not emphasized as frequently, because there are a million answers to how things can work.

The fascinating thing is within the confines of karate, principles may be 100% opposite each other in different systems/styles/instructors and still be terribly effective in their own right.

Part of the Ying and the Yang how things work after all.


Edited by Victor Smith (05/12/05 08:29 PM)
_________________________
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#140938 - 05/13/05 11:35 AM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Camilo_kun]
Neko456 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 01/18/05
Posts: 3260
Loc: Midwest City, Ok, USA
Gichin Funakoshi (Japanese, 1868-1957) is the father of the karate do, he was a student of Yasutsune Azato (Okinawa).

My reply - Yes but he is the father of the Art he taught to the Japanese which carried his pen name (Shoto) which were his ex-enemies and he taught them the training program that he and Azato (WAS JUST ONE OF HIS INSTRUCTORS) taught the school yard kids of Okinawa. The Japanese were taught watered down karate not Tode-Jujist(warrior art) the transceldental meditation is a Bududa influence.

The Okinawans were rugged people that had to survive with their skills and wit, noticed that most of the Chinese instructors had to kick their butt to prove that what he was doing was worth learning.

As with the Shaolin Monks after all that mediatation you can only be a pacifist for so long, but when life and honor is at stake, the Monks were known to kick much butt!!!
_________________________
DBAckerson

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#140939 - 05/14/05 08:24 AM Re: Defining Karate [Re: butterfly]
nenipp Offline
Veteran

Registered: 04/13/04
Posts: 1205
"despite turning 40 this year"

Haa, Butterfly, you old fart!

Just kidding, I'm turning 40 this year too.

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#140940 - 05/14/05 02:53 PM Re: Defining Karate [Re: nenipp]
butterfly Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 3012
Loc: Torrance, CA
Nenipp,

YO! Like I told JKogas...Year of the Snake, Dude!

-B

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#140941 - 05/27/05 05:24 AM Re: Defining Karate [Re: Camilo_kun]
Ives Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 04/25/05
Posts: 691
Loc: the Netherlands
Quote:

Gichin Funakoshi (Japanese, 1868-1957) is the father of the karate do, he was a studen of Yasutsune Azato (Okinawa).



Gichin Funakoshi was Okinawan. Born in Shuri I believe. Correct me if I am wrong.
_________________________
Ives

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