Dr. K......I think that one thing that is killing the arts are statements like this.....

"Matsubayashi may not be for you, but I have to know who you have seen perform the style. They were obviously doing it incorrectly."

Isn't our art suppose to be about interpretation. How can someone say its being done wrong, without the benefit of seeing what is being done. I think one of the things that is really hurting todays Martial Arts practioner is the belief that if something is not done the way they do it, it must be practiced wrong. I am sure you have seen Bunkai interpretated based on the practioners experience, his background and his prejudices. If the persons interpretation is not the same as ours, is it necessarily wrong? I trained with a Shito group in South Carolina and the Sensei adapted his kata to be more funtional, than form. Now this is not the way I learned my kata, but this was his expalination. If you are to do your kata like you are fighting, then make your kata more fighting applicable, use a fighting stance vs a chambered stance-pull your punches back just like you would really fight. Once again its not the process we learned. We were taught form, then funtion. But does that make him wrong, is he doing my style wrong? I was always taught if something doesn't violate principles or basics, its not wrong but different. Too much time is spent trying to question how others practice then working on openinig our minds to accept other ways. I find this particularly amusing in Okinawan Karate styles. All this talk about what is pure and what is the true kata and who did what. Yet alot of the earlier Masters trained with each other, and also created research groups to bring out each others art. This produced great Masters such as Mabuni Sensei and Miyagi Sensei who shared much information. I often hear about Shotokan purists who claim Shotkan as their style, yet Funakoshi Sensei sent all his senior students to Mabuni to learn his advanced kata. They all shared then and very little was compared to each other, rather each style had their own signature. Wouldn't it be great today if this could be done today, but too much time is spent looking at who is not doing things originally, or how so and so doesn't do the kata right. Very few of the old Masters are still with us, and those that are, are very old. Who really knows what the original Sensei's inteneded or even more so, what their interpretation was. After all this time, with all the interpretations its hard to say what is true, pure, or who is doing what right.