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#183095 - 09/08/05 01:25 PM Re: correct attitude for senior grades [Re: Galen]
Gavin Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/11/05
Posts: 2267
Loc: Southend, Essex, UK
Galen, I didn't read this post before I replied to your response to my comment. I actually take this to be quite offensive, and directed solely at my instructor. This isn't the kind of open minded post I would have expected from you.

Quote:

Quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

what doesnt kill you makes you stronger


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------



ah, the great justification for extreme teaching methods. Besides that, its a load of crap. There are PLENTY of things out there that wont kill you, but I promise they wont make you any stronger. Take this posture with a shy, inexperienced beginner and I promise you that you will do more harm than good.





We've already stated that we train for different reasons, striking someones view point off as crap is ignorant. MA's not being about self defence is garbage in my personal opinion. If your not learning to defend yourself, what the hell point is there for spending 20+ spending plus learning to punch and kick???????

Sorry if that's come across as offensive, but from someone who has acknowledged that there are different reasons for training, its irrated me!
_________________________
Gavin King
www.SHIKON.COM
Follow me on twitter @taichigav

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#183096 - 09/08/05 01:55 PM Re: correct attitude for senior grades [Re: Gavin]
Galen Offline
Member

Registered: 11/07/04
Posts: 379
Quote:

Haven't really got much more to say on this subject, just wanted to assure you that I don't consider you to be any less of an instructor, but our successes can only be judged by the goals that we set.




Fair enough, my friend, and God love ya for it! Sincerely!

We may part ways on why we train, but the reason I respect you so much is that you are very clear on why you train, dont pretend to train for other reasons, and most of still respect those who do train for other reasons.

You humble me. (but I'll still show up now and again, just to toss the pascifist ball into court... )

Galen
_________________________
Nothing imperfect is the measure of anything!

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#183097 - 09/08/05 02:07 PM Re: correct attitude for senior grades [Re: Gavin]
Galen Offline
Member

Registered: 11/07/04
Posts: 379
Quote:

We've already stated that we train for different reasons, striking someones view point off as crap is ignorant. MA's not being about self defence is garbage in my personal opinion. If your not learning to defend yourself, what the hell point is there for spending 20+ spending plus learning to punch and kick???????




Gavin

I meant no offense, and I knew that poking holes in not only your instructor's, but your father's perspective might raise your ire. I was not striking his point of view off as crap. I was stating that that comment in particular was crap. And it is.

I respect you a lot, but I personally feel that such a perpective in teaching is wrong thinking. I wont apologize for the comment, but I will try and clarify.

We differ in perspective, granted, but I do respect your position. Where I get off the respect train is when I see instrutors taking a perspective on training that I feel is dangerous and will do more harm than good to their students.

I am sorry if this ticks you off, but from what I have seen, I see some fatal flaws in your instructors methods.

If we can discuss them rationally and without anger, I am more than willing to do so.

If you are not willing to accept that your isntructor may be flawed in his treaching; if you cannot accept that by his posting here, he opens himself up for such critisism (as do we all), and if you cannot discuss the issue without my comments making you angry, so be it.

However, I do concede that the use of the word crap might be overstating it, but I do want to be clear. I was referring the the statement that 'if it does not kill you it makes you stronger', not the entire system of teaching. That is why I isolated that comment in my response.

Galen


Edited by Galen (09/08/05 02:09 PM)
_________________________
Nothing imperfect is the measure of anything!

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#183098 - 09/08/05 02:28 PM Re: correct attitude for senior grades [Re: Gavin]
Kintama Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/17/05
Posts: 2724
Loc: Massachusetts
This is an interesting thread...if only it was renamed in the form of a question instead of using that troublesome word, 'correct'.

heres what I see: I think all agree fear is a part of self defense. There are varying teaching styles for addressing fear, but for the purpose of the discussion I'm hearing two major camps of thought which I've exaggurated into two categories... A) promoting confidence. or B) de-sensetizing.

For LONG-TERM training (life), (A) has been shown to produce better results. (which is why parents/teachers don't hit kids anymore for disciplining) There are two pifalls to method (A):
1> encouraging overconfidence. (technique works in the dojo, but it's crap outside)
2> encouraging false-confidence. (telling them it's SD, when it's not)

for SHORT-TERM training (student goes in for SD only to learn a skill) method (B) is best...this is the method the military and police use...why? because they have X amount of time to teach as much as possible...de-sensetising fear is just one of the many services they offer.
The reason people might think this is a rediculous atmosphere for a neighborhood dojo is perhaps the threat isn't as great for a 12-yearold fighting on the playground compared to someone coming at you with a broken beer bottle. The 12-yearold has time to understand fear and overcome it thru encouraged confidence...the police cadet doesn't have that luxury.
pitfalls for this are:
1> 'defender' and 'agressor' become indistinguishable thru moral indifference (ie: thug)
2> inflated sense of confidence OUTSIDE of the dojo (ie arrogant)

now Gavin and his Dad's place have bouncers to train...maybe they don't advertise it as such, but thats the way it is. If people don't want bouncer training, they can walk down the steet and go somewhere else. bouncers would not be trained properly if they didn't know what it felt like to have the wind knocked out of them. the way they get their bags deflated from time to time is by allowing the higher ranks to step it up a notch at their discretion. (Gavin, I'm curious, ever see any Women bouncers?)

Personally, my day-to-day threat level is pretty low...I have a much greater chance of getting hurt forgetting to wear my seatbelt...and the scars on my face to prove it. I've taken the path (A) and self-defense training is the byproduct of the Art. kneeding the 'doe' is just as important to me as eating the bread.

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#183099 - 09/08/05 02:48 PM Re: correct attitude for senior grades [Re: Kintama]
Galen Offline
Member

Registered: 11/07/04
Posts: 379
Interesting post Kintama, but from my rather isolated perspective, there is one flaw in your thinking.

Your post pre-supposes that all training is geared with self-defense as its ultimate goal.

For myself (and I know, I am beginning to sound like a broken record) self defense is a secondary by-product. I dont train to be able to defend myself. It is the means, not the end.

I use matrial training as a stepping stone to another goal. What that goal is, is irrelavent to the thread so I wont wast band width going into it now.

The fear factor, to coin a phrase, is irrelavent, as I dont train (myself or my students) to fight in a realistic (street) setting. I dont expect them to fight. I dont pretend to be able to fight, so how I would react to the fear that happens in a fight doesnt matter.

I agree that if you are teaching and training to be able to fight well, then absolutely that fear has to be addressed. The whole psychological program involved in fighting would have to be covered, since so much of winning (or losing) a fight is grounded in psychological perspectives.

For myself, my training goals and my purposes, fear should play no part in my teaching, except when a student has a fear that is blocking his / her training. Then it becomes a part of the teaching by default, as they need to get over it in order to progress.

I still maintain that, no matter what your training goals are, there is no reason, practical or philisophical, for an instructor to expect, want or condone their students 'fearing' them.

Galen
_________________________
Nothing imperfect is the measure of anything!

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#183100 - 09/08/05 03:32 PM Re: correct attitude for senior grades [Re: Galen]
Kintama Offline
Professional Poster

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

Your post pre-supposes that all training is geared with self-defense as its ultimate goal.



ummm...no it doesn't. but you are right, I didn't make that clear.
Sport and/or competition MA could fall into either category. The 'fear' could be fear of losing as oppossed to dying.

as different and diverse as dojo and training methods are, so too are people's motivation for training at them. you had choices when you first joined a dojo...what did you base your choices on? most people say 'to learn how to defend myself and stay in shape.' Some people don't get what they pay for and find it easier to change their reasons instead of changing dojos.

For the life of me, I can't understand how someone would bother to study MA if they didn't have at least the attempt of self-defense at it's core. build an MA the other way around and you've created a paper tiger. Now if origami is your thing and identify it as such, then no one can fault you, ...but you are far from having the right to say someone elses methods are 'wrong'.

[addition]BTW your words "no matter what your training goals are, there is no reason, practical or philisophical, for an instructor to expect, want or condone their students 'fearing' them."

I agree. Fear is not the focus...but it is sometimes a byproduct. If that happens, the sensei has to work with the student to overcome that fear in order to progress.

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#183101 - 09/08/05 03:39 PM Re: correct attitude for senior grades [Re: Galen]
Gavin Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/11/05
Posts: 2267
Loc: Southend, Essex, UK
Galen, I'll admit to being a little peeved by your comments, but as a MA I do have a lot of respect for the calibre of your posts and our past discussions.....I'll even accept the fact that you're a bit of a wet blanket! *cheeky grin*

I'd love to give a proper reply to this, but my girlfriend won't let me! NOW THAT IS FEAR! So, I'd love to continue this tomorrow. Getting down the core of why we train is a bit like touching on religion...but we can all keep it civil!

So hugs 'n kisses, and I'll continue this post tomorrow when the missus ain't around!
_________________________
Gavin King
www.SHIKON.COM
Follow me on twitter @taichigav

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#183102 - 09/09/05 11:50 AM Re: correct attitude for senior grades [Re: Galen]
je8ki9 Offline
Member

Registered: 08/04/05
Posts: 32
Loc: UK
Hi Galen,

John King just replying to your post. Wow man it did come across as a bit hostile, but I don't mind I'd sooner be cyberbashed rather than for real!

I think Kintamas latest post really puts things into a us and them perspective, that withstanding I'd like to address some of your comments as in my original post. As thats where the buck stops for me in self defence which is my emphasis of MA.

I've studied Zen and yoga for many years and the benefits are huge, but it didn't need MA's to get there as their profound in the own right.

Fear and Respect

I can truly say that over 32 years I have meet Sensei who I've both feared and respected. I have met Sensei whom I've respected their abilities but not liked them that much. When we use the word fear its not a bowl opening, feel of dread, this is the end of my life type of fear, but more a yikes this is a person capable of kicking a$$ if he wanted to type concern. Galen, I'm a qualified Counsellor and one of the ways we help people to reduce their fears and phobia's is by exposure, albeit limited exposure to those very fears, but as always it changes with the individual as to what is Ok and what isn't!

What doesn't kill you

I do think you have missed the point of this quote. Ofcourse there are loads of things that won't kill you or make you stronger (beer comes to mind!). but the quote means that what is capable of killing you, if you survive it makes you stronger from the experience. This has nothing to do with brutalizing anybody and at no point in the any of het kempo posts has it been stated, if anything I think the opposite has been expressed if the read without a particular bias.

Dojo Anvil Sensei Hammer

I am not by any means the first MA to use this quote and is meant to be about the process of forging. Yet again with no ego involved, a being as the teacher went throguh a similar process.

Do you not take pleasure in your students achievements? Guiding them through the pitfalls, stand back when they make progress and mentally, emotionally, spiritually and yes even physicallly charge them to push and extend themselves. Not brutalizing them, not terrifying them, but help them to push and extend themselves, that is what is mean by the quote!

99% of learning is self taught

I love it when people quote percentages about. Assuming you wen to school when you were 5 and left at 17, you're saying that out of 12 years only 1% was under tutorship, and the other 99% was self taught? You either an exceptionally gifted individual or the percentages are wrong!

In conclusion Galen, I believe sometimes people get very defensive of other peoples viewpoints and attitudes because they think that we don't value them. This isn't my thinking, and I am very glad that MA's can be so many different things for different people.

Yours in the arts,

Gavin's Dad!
_________________________
John King www.gosokempo.com

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#183103 - 09/09/05 02:30 PM Re: correct attitude for senior grades [Re: je8ki9]
Gavin Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/11/05
Posts: 2267
Loc: Southend, Essex, UK
I've been thinking about this a hell of a lot, and to be honest, I think Galen is right in saying that there is more to the MA's than just learning to fight. However I disagree completely that SD is a by product of the MA's and philosphical aspects are the main reason for training, in fact I see it as completely the opposite. Again as Galen was kind enough to clarify his position I will also.

When learning the art of tea making, then the purpose of my art is to make tea. If I learnt the art of archery, then the purpose of my art is to shot arrows. If I learn a fighting art, the purpose of my art is to fight. In order to be true to the original purpose of the art, one has to practice that art to its original purpose to its fullest.

I very rarely discuss the philosphical aspects of my training publicly, as they are intensely private to me and also come across as being a bit corny. However I'll try and touch upon them a little.

Since my early teens I've been raised reading books on the samurai, zen and the karate masters of old. Tales of noble warriors and fighters who push themselves beyond the limits of ordinary people. Obviously I've always liked the idea of whooping butt, but I was always drawn to the pureness and exactness of the logic and clarity behind their actions.

My first Zen book was bought for me by my Dad and was the wonderful, "Zen Flesh, Zen Bones". This book has had such a profound affect on my development and is a treasure that I carry with me pratically every where I go. It is full of tales of tough masters, who to the uninitated would appear to torture their disciples. I never saw that, I see loving masters, pushing their students beyond all limitations and boundries. Since my early years in the Dojo I've been pushed, the amount of times I heard the word spirit as a kid in the lines is uncountable.

Marcus Garvey said that "Black man will not know himself until his back is against the wall!". I think that this quote has a special message for peole of all colours and creed. Not being pushed and tested does not breed the need to adapt, with out the need to adapt we will never grow. I seek to put myself through hardship at most points of my life, to help me grow as a person.

I suppose what I'm trying to say is that I see a wisdom inthose who have gone before us, the enlightend souls who truely understood the ways of fighting and the warrior. I will probably never ever go into battle, but that doesn't mean that my fighting spirit will be any less. Every day of my life I spend trying to push myself that inch further.

Being a firm believer in Yin and Yang, I believe the more we develop and appreciate the ways of violence, the greater our appreciation of the ways of peace becomes. You cannot understand violence unless you have an acquaintance with it. The dojo is a place, under a loving instructor, where you can be introduced gently and caringly into the ways of violence. With an understanding of violence you can than have an understanding of the virtues of peace. This is what I see as being the way of the warrior, and a path that I strive to walk down.

I hope that didn't come across as corny, but I wanted to illustrate that we are not just mindless thugs! Thugs yes, but not mindless!
_________________________
Gavin King
www.SHIKON.COM
Follow me on twitter @taichigav

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#183104 - 09/09/05 04:06 PM Re: correct attitude for senior grades [Re: Gavin]
jamesd Offline
Member

Registered: 07/06/05
Posts: 145
Loc: Essex,England
Hi Everyone,

Really enjoyed reading the post's on this thread , i'm new to all this forum stuff and i've found that this particular thread really provoked my thought! i've posted my views previously and can't really add to that, but it's quite clear that we all train for different purposes, some maybe harsher than others! i think that the most important thing is, we have to be true to ourselves and chose a practice that suits us best individually, that way we can all grow and improve under the conditions that suit us best! Cheers!

James
_________________________
www.hardfasthandway.com

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