GM JI Han Jae

Discussion in 'Hapkido' started by Kong Soo Do, Feb 22, 2012.

  1. iron_ox

    iron_ox Black Belt

    • MartialTalk Fan
    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2003
    Messages:
    594
    Likes Received:
    13
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    Just wanted to make sure that my post was understood. I don't necessarily believe that training with someone once or twice can tell you about their true level of skill overall. I guess that is also true if one is simply checking out someone's background in general, even before they train, it can be very difficult if someone's life story is constantly undergoing historical revisionism. I know it must be difficult to get all media outlets to get everything correct at the same time!
     
  2. Kong Soo Do

    Kong Soo Do Master of Arts

    • Supporting Member
    • MartialTalk Fan
    Joined:
    May 17, 2011
    Messages:
    1,976
    Likes Received:
    175
    Trophy Points:
    123
    No problem :)

    I agree. To take it further, I have seen people overlook what could be seen as questionable, if it is someone they like while at the same time 'question' or comment negatively on those they don't like, even if the person they don't like exceeds the standards of the one they do like. On top of this, they may or may not truly know the level of skill of the one(s) they question or negatively comment on. They may actually know nothing first-hand about them. This is why I commented on the lack of a level playing field. It is a double-standard.
     
  3. puunui

    puunui Senior Master

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2010
    Messages:
    4,378
    Likes Received:
    22
    Trophy Points:
    0
    It is obvious that you have an agenda with respect to GM Ji. No problem. If you wish to swim upstream and fight the world, knock yourself out. I guarantee you that he doesn't care about what you think and what you say, anymore than I do.

    Go for it.
     
  4. Kong Soo Do

    Kong Soo Do Master of Arts

    • Supporting Member
    • MartialTalk Fan
    Joined:
    May 17, 2011
    Messages:
    1,976
    Likes Received:
    175
    Trophy Points:
    123
    I've been asking the question of whether or not Mr. PARK had Hapkido experience, in that he could issue someone an 8th Dan. Looking back, it hit me that you listed him a Mr. rather than Master or GM. This would seem to answer my question that he either had no Hapkido training or was not of sufficient rank to issue anyone an 8th Dan. This then, if I understand, would have been an administrative type post for the government and not one of actual experience.

    I suppose this is okay, though perhaps a bit odd. One typically thinks of someone of greater experience, or at least higher rank being the issuing athority in such things. I'm not indicating this is wrong or that there is a problem with it. I know that the Japanese ministry did something similar decades earlier when looking into officially sanctioning karate in Japan. I guess it all boils down to the value that one places on the certification that is issued by a governing authority.

    My thanks to everyone that has participated in this thread. It has proven enlightening.
     
  5. Kong Soo Do

    Kong Soo Do Master of Arts

    • Supporting Member
    • MartialTalk Fan
    Joined:
    May 17, 2011
    Messages:
    1,976
    Likes Received:
    175
    Trophy Points:
    123
    Interesting tidbit that was passed on to me; according to Scott Shaw;

    http://www.tkd-hapkido.com/hapkido_history.htm

    This would seem to put the student ranking the teacher???
     
  6. MJS

    MJS Administrator Staff Member

    • Administrator
    • MartialTalk Fan
    • Super Moderator
    • LifeTime Supporting Member
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2003
    Messages:
    30,086
    Likes Received:
    345
    Trophy Points:
    193
    Location:
    Cromwell,CT
    Folks,

    We've already had a few posts from this thread brought to our attention. Lets keep the thread on topic please. I realize that some may disagree with other members posts. Disagreement is part of life. No need to publically air this stuff in the forum.

    MJS
    MT Asst. Admin
     
  7. iron_ox

    iron_ox Black Belt

    • MartialTalk Fan
    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2003
    Messages:
    594
    Likes Received:
    13
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    According to Wikipedia (not always the best resource): "Before he left Korea a former student, Myung Jae-Nam, the head of the International H.K.D Federation, awarded Ji Han-Jae a 10th Dan"

    I can only go on the information provided in the original post, but if this is the same 10th dan from 1983 (it might not be) then it appears that rank was garnered again from a student.

    Now that is interesting huh?

    Assuming the wiki is correct.

    Maybe there was another 10th dan issued by another person or group.
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2012
  8. Kong Soo Do

    Kong Soo Do Master of Arts

    • Supporting Member
    • MartialTalk Fan
    Joined:
    May 17, 2011
    Messages:
    1,976
    Likes Received:
    175
    Trophy Points:
    123
    Looking back over this thread has been highly interesting. And I would prefer the thread to be fair and balanced. By this, I mean, that in no way am I suggesting GM JI has done anything wrong. Many could see his rise to 8th and 9th Dan as being far too short a time. But that begs the question of what is the standard they are judging the time by i.e. what ruler are you using to measure? I could also see a student ranking him if the student(s) were placed in positions of authority within or at the top of a specific organization. Now, I can't say where or not this was a 'good-ole-boy' promotion or not as I wasn't there and don't know the specifics. Others would have to offer their input if they have some factual information.

    Another consideration is that the KHF may have shorter TIG requirements as a whole than what is 'typically' thought of for the martial arts. And this is fine as well as they are their own governing authority and can set standards as they see fit. I don't know what their TIG standards are so I'd like to ask someone who would know i.e. puunui. If I remember correctly, you are a 9th Dan in this organization under GM JI (or you were under him at some point). Simply asked, how long did it take you to earn your 9th Dan? How long had you been training in Hapkido prior to earning this rank? Could this be considered an average time for Hapkido students in this organization? Thank you.
     
  9. Kong Soo Do

    Kong Soo Do Master of Arts

    • Supporting Member
    • MartialTalk Fan
    Joined:
    May 17, 2011
    Messages:
    1,976
    Likes Received:
    175
    Trophy Points:
    123
    Taking a look at this again, from another perspective. Uechi Kannei Sensei didn't adopt the Dan/Kyu system until the mid 50's. By this time, he probably had at or around 30 years of training and teaching experience. I'd have to go back and check the dates, but I'm pretty close. Senior students (ones that had trained under Uechi Kanbun Sensei) only went to 4th or 5th Dan when the Dan/Kyu system was implemented. Many of which probably had more than 20 years of training. They didn't seem to be as interested in 'rank' in Okinawa or at this time as later day Korea appears to be. Perhaps 16-18 years would better warrant a 5th Dan...perhaps maybe a 6th Dan if somewhat traditional standards are being adhered to in the art.

    Again, just looking at it from a different perspective i.e. different art/culture/era.

    I'm still curious as to the TIG guidelines of those under GM Ji to see if they were also of much shorter duration than what one would consider 'traditional' or 'standard'. I'm disappointed that this information hasn't been offered by those here with first hand knowledge i.e. trained under GM JI and/or belong to the same organizations and/or are of comparable rank. It would help to make a good comparison of standards within this branch of the art.

    At any rate, it is very interesting to compare and contrast cultures/arts/eras etc with the information that we do have on hand. Gives one some historical perspective and insight. I like this sort of thing.
     
  10. yorkshirelad

    yorkshirelad Master Black Belt

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2009
    Messages:
    1,435
    Likes Received:
    50
    Trophy Points:
    73
    Location:
    Huntington Beach
    Hapkido has always had a dubious ranking history, and still does, but that does not make the art a fraud. To begin with, it is doubtful if Choi had any rank in Daito Ryu from Takeda Sokaku. After all, there is no record of him training with Takeda, and he claimed that his documentatio got lost on a train. This is dubious to say the least.
    When Choi was teaching, he refered to his art as Yawara. It was Ji who named his art Hapkido. I believe Ji was ranked to 3rd Dan by Choi, but the art of Hapkido and subsequently Sin Moo Hapkido was developed by Ji. The Danjun breathing, special kicking techniques, and some of the more philosophical charateristics were all incorporated by Ji. Therefore it is par for the course that he would be a high rank, at a young age, because he created the art.
    My Hapkido teacher. Massan Ghorbani began his Hapkido training in , I believe 1991 or 1992, by 1996 he was promoted to 6th Dan. A similar time frame can be seen with Jurg Ziegler of Switzerland. Both of these gentlemen are now 10th Dan, and, along with GM Young and GM McKenzie will ensure the art survives into the next generation as Ji envisions it.
    I have been an uke for Ji, and I can tell you that he is powerful and still makes an effort to train, even in his advanced age.
     
  11. iron_ox

    iron_ox Black Belt

    • MartialTalk Fan
    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2003
    Messages:
    594
    Likes Received:
    13
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    Choi Dojunim had very consistent ranking throughout his teaching career. If his ranking from Takeda Sokaku is in question to you, perhaps you should give up Hapkido since even Ji has claimed (although I am not sure where in the revision it appears) that all the actual techniques he teaches came from Choi Dojunim.

    According to Ji, he came up with the name - he started making this claim after Choi Dojunim died - although several of Choi Dojunim's students, including Suh Bok Sup (Choi
    Dojunim's First Student) make the claim that Choi Dojunim first used the name Hapkido.



    Sorry here, but Choi Dojunim always taught Danjun Breathing, although Ji may also teach this as well, it was always part of what Choi Dojunim taught. The "special kicking" you speak of seems incongruent with the very principles that Choi Dojunim imparted that Ji uses. And as for the philosophy, that is part of Sin Moo, so if it works for you, that seems fair enough. And it continues to seem odd that students would rank the teacher.

    Clearly in Sin Moo the Founder can issue whatever rank they want. Seems totally reasonable. He's even known to offer 8th dans to people that can't spell Hapkido, but that's his prerogative. Right?
     
  12. hkdsean

    hkdsean White Belt

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2008
    Messages:
    9
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    3
    I normally avoid these discussions because they are flooded with misinformation and speculation as most have strong personal feelings but lack any real evidence.

    He certainly is free to issue whatever rank he chooses, and the same is true for every other instructor and organization. The Sinmoo Hapkido curriculum goes up to 4th Dan, so largely anything after this is political or honorary in nature. It does not necessarily indicate a certain earned level of technique.

    As for Hapkido being spelled correctly, this is a ridiculous comment. Hapkido is most commonly romanized in the way we have written it, but this doesn't follow the revised romanization that tends to me used more often now. To spell hapkido would only be a relevant statement if we are talking about writing in Hangul (Hanja would not be "spelled" since it does not use a phonetic alphabet which is implied when we say "spell"). Can anyone on this forum spell Hapkido in Arabic? I can't, but I know some of Ji's students in Africa can. This then must implie an understanding of the korean language, which last I checked was not a necessary requirement in the art. On a funny note (yet extremely frustrating) I had an article published a few years back where the the Korean character for "Hap" was misprinted in the final editing process. Nothing I could do once it went to print.

    I don't write on these forums very often, but I really hope people would begin to look at these things a little more objectively. I am always looking for more information on the early history, and welcome well-researched information.
     
  13. iron_ox

    iron_ox Black Belt

    • MartialTalk Fan
    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2003
    Messages:
    594
    Likes Received:
    13
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    I would agree, and certainly think that reading my post again might benefit. But I will answer some of the more salient points here.

    Choi Dojunim had physical techniques up through the rank of 7th Dan. These ranks seemed very consistent with the men that I have met that actually trained to that level.

    If someone is going to have any issue with the story that Choi Dojunim had consistently told his entire life, maybe they ought not study his art if they believe he lied. This seems even more incredulous with a student of Ji saying this as Ji's story has been getting modified for years. Ji has claimed in several interviews that he was Choi Dojunim's senior student, a high ranking student, etc. None of these are true. Now, does this same person question the existence of Taoist Lee or "Grandma"? Is there any evidence that either of these two people ever existed? Again, Choi Dojunim's story remained very consistent his entire life, I certainly cannot say the same for Ji, based on the interviews he has given over the years that make a great variety of claims.

    If there has been as issue of Ji being misquoted, then he should do a single interview and set down the history that he feels best informs of the truth, because the myriad of articles he has been part of apparently don't work, right?

    So am I to believe that Ji made the techniques up himself? Or were they from Taoist Lee or Grandma?

    Who ever said there was any animosity between Ji and Suh? There are some great pictures of Ji with Han Bong Soo and others smiling at a meal, and Han and everyone else at that table lists Choi Dojunim as their teacher, not Ji, even though he was, and they are all smiling. And having asked Master Mike about the article at length, I don't think there was any effort to make it look like anyone had a rift. It was more the recollection of a 20 something versus that of a 13 year old. I have met men that were there before Ji and stayed after he did that report similar things.

    Please point to any public reference where Ji made these claims before the as in TKDT in 1986. I have never seen one.

    It is difficult to compare curriculum unless you are speaking of doing this up to about 4th dan, since the vast majority of the people that stayed with Choi Dojunim past that rank never left Daegu, and I am curious as to what do you think would accomplish? I'm curious.

    I know that Choi Dojunim taught Dan jun breathing because I have spoken to those that were there before Ji, and have seen the difference in what Choi Dojunim taught and what Ji teaches, quite different in structure and philosophy. And there are LOTS of people that were around and never left Daegu, many who completed the curriculum and became 8th dans (or higher) under Choi Dojunim.

    As for the kicking, I maintain my opinion about it, but if that is the Sin Moo way, so be it. As to your sarcastic comment about not training with Choi Dojunim, no I have never said I have either, but I have trained with and met with many men that did, they are remarkably consistent in their stories, so since that is the case, I am very certain that learning what they have to teach and say is the next best thing to being there.

    I don't know of any other "founders" of styles that were ranked by their students. Can you provide another example? And if the rank from Myung to Ji was more "ceremonial" that makes sense, except the rank is quoted as an actual "rank".

    Sean, read my previous post again, before you say something like this "As for Hapkido being spelled correctly, this is a ridiculous comment." I believe on the philosophical tenets Ji stresses is not to be greedy - that comment I made was in a direct response to the story I was told from a HIGHLY respected martial artist here in Chicago to whom Ji offered an 8th dan in Sin Moo Hapkido, telling him that "we can make a lot of money together" - the gentleman replied he couldn't spell Hapkido, let alone teach it, so that notion would be ridiculous.
    I wrote this: He's even known to offer 8th dans to people that can't spell Hapkido, but that's his prerogative. Right?

    So, where do we find misinformation and speculation?

    Where did the Dan Bong come from according to Ji? And the size of the Dan Bong? And what is the purpose of this weapon and why did he include it in his curriculum?

    Many early practioners of Hapkido under Choi Dojunim are now being very forthcoming with their experiences, and I am sure that many of the interviews might be seen as leading, but the answers are fascinating, and will bring a world of clarity to waters that are often muddy surrounding Hapkido.
     
  14. puunui

    puunui Senior Master

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2010
    Messages:
    4,378
    Likes Received:
    22
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Hey Sean, I wouldn't worry about it. To me, the comments you are responding to come from people who have not yet come to the realization that if it weren't for GM Ji, they would have never heard of hapkido and therefore would not be practicing it today. The ingratitude in their hearts clouds their ability to see just exactly what GM Ji has done, not only for hapkido, but for the korean martial arts in general. Perhaps there are those who started earlier than he, but it cannot be argued who had the largest impact. Like I said, I wouldn't worry about it. I know GM Ji doesn't care what these disrespectful juniors think.
     
  15. iron_ox

    iron_ox Black Belt

    • MartialTalk Fan
    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2003
    Messages:
    594
    Likes Received:
    13
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    Hello all,

    What are we supposed to take as research on Ji? Who wrote the accurate, non-misquoted information?

    Sean, you claim Ji made the statement that he was "Hapkido's Founder" before the death of Choi Dojunim, can you provide a reference?

    Please understand I am not trying to make this a personal thing, but the published information simply does not jive with what is often said, then re-quoted. And, unlike the petulant foot stomping from your member from Hawaii, I am actually interested in published information you can provide.

    So let's start with an article published in April, 1985 in BLACK BELT Magazine. It is interesting to note that the article was written by Jane Hallander, who is well known as an author of articles about Kuk Sool Won/Suh In Hyuk; so she was no stranger to historical storytelling. This article is interesting in that it is noted that Ji did not change the hand techniques of Choi Dojunim, but rather added kicking and philosophy, and his brand of breathing techniques. There is no mention that he is the Founder of Hapkido, or anything about Taoist Lee or Grandma...

    Taoist Lee and Grandma - no one else in Korea ever trained under/learned under them? There is not a single photograph of these two incredibly important people? Ji's family had some money, so why no photos? Even if they were expensive.

    Let's jump to some online material:

    Is this from your website Sean?

    Ji, Han Jae was born in 1936 in Andong, Korea. His family moved to Sun Yang, China when he was one year old. He attended school there until 1945 when his family returned to Andong. He began his martial arts training in Yawara a few years later with Choi, Yung Sul at the age of 13. The techniques he learned at this time were primarily joint locks, throws, low kicks, and sword techniques. For part of this time he was living in a house he had built himself and was working for 10 months as an architect for City Hall. He trained full time with Choi until 1956 when he moved back to his home city of Andong from Seoul.


    When Ji was eighteen, he began to train with a man he used to refer to as Taoist Lee. Lee was Ji’s Samrangdo instructor and he used the term “Taoist” when he first arrived in the US because it was the closest word he could find to describe Lee. Lee trained Ji, Han Jae primarily in mediation, the use of the Jang-Bong (6' staff), the Dan-Bong (short stick), and in Korean Taek-Kyun or Tek Gi yun, kicking. Many of the drills that Ji was doing at this time are similar to plyometrics used in sports today.

    So we are led to believe that Ji was an architect before age 20 in which city?

    So, did Ji start training with Taoist Lee before he left Choi Dojunim's training? This all seems very fragmented.

    An almost identical, more complete version seems to appear here...http://www.worldsinmoohapkidofederation.com/history.html - is this closer to an accurate story? Although it does contain some interesting items, such as why Ji wanted to return to Korea in May 1984, but his passport/visa were expired, and he was unable to stay in Korea?? This makes no sense, as a Korean native, he would hardly need a visa to return home. Then, apparently with the same expired passport he traveled back into the US and to other countries...that is very inconsistent. Again, a small issue, but just for clarity.
     
  16. iron_ox

    iron_ox Black Belt

    • MartialTalk Fan
    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2003
    Messages:
    594
    Likes Received:
    13
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    Glenn,

    I feel no gratitude for the person that to me has done far more damage to Hapkido than he has helped it. And apparently I am in good company as SO many of Ji's students claimed Choi Dojunim as their teacher, why is that? Does Confucian social belief outstrip simple respect?? Ji has made a career out of founding or co-founding organizations he then leaves for what are often described as "political reasons" - creating what appear to be power vacuums and in my opinion is partially what has led to ongoing belief that Hapkido is a catch all martial art massively divided into multiple factions. Since so many of his contemporaries knew he was not the "Founder", Ji never commanded the authority needed to keep the art unified even as he promoted it, thus further creating fragmentation.
    And as far as calling me names, Ji is far more disrespectful for trying to make claims only after Choi Dojunim passed away.
     
  17. puunui

    puunui Senior Master

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2010
    Messages:
    4,378
    Likes Received:
    22
    Trophy Points:
    0
    If you feel so strongly about it, then perhaps you should go tell that to him to his face. He travels to Chicago often enough.
     
  18. iron_ox

    iron_ox Black Belt

    • MartialTalk Fan
    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2003
    Messages:
    594
    Likes Received:
    13
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    Is he going to come clean if he is confronted? Probably not. So, not worth anyone's time.
     
  19. puunui

    puunui Senior Master

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2010
    Messages:
    4,378
    Likes Received:
    22
    Trophy Points:
    0
    You never know until you go and see for yourself.
     
  20. Kong Soo Do

    Kong Soo Do Master of Arts

    • Supporting Member
    • MartialTalk Fan
    Joined:
    May 17, 2011
    Messages:
    1,976
    Likes Received:
    175
    Trophy Points:
    123
    In regards to your instructor, what warranted him going from white belt to 6th Dan in 4-5 years? Did he progress through each and every rank or was there ranks that were skipped.

    Thank you.
     

Share This Page