Talking bad about Hwarang Do

Discussion in 'Korean Martial Arts - General' started by Hwarang, Jan 4, 2004.

  1. Hwarang

    Hwarang Guest

    Since I'm alone in defending Hwarang Do here :duel: it would be nice to hear if there are people out there with other opinions than the few people talking bad.

    Anyway, Hwarang Do has received it's share of bad press on the Internet, mainly through people who were low ranking blackbelts years and years ago.
    I'd like to go through these stories here in it's own thread, otherwise the other threads are getting too muddled. I'm not a spokesman for World Hwa Rang Do Association however, and questions should be directed to whrda@hwarangdo.com, but I'll do my best to reply to some of these stories as they come up.


    Bob D rambling in the "Hwa rang Do - Kook Sul Won connection?" thread (http://www.martialtalk.com/forum/showthread.php?s=&threadid=11884):
    >> The reasons that there are so few schools has to do with a great system being watered down, promotions gien without ability or enough time behind them, arrogant leaders, abusive leaders, money, fees, more money, and a general lack of mutual respect from leaders. <<

    That's interesting Bob! You were training Hwarang Do - what 15-20 years ago? What rank were you? Did you spend a lot of time in Los Angeles when you were in Hwarang Do? Tell us something about what Hwarang Do is today, if you were a what dan(?) 20 years ago you must be an expert! Just because you don't do something for 20 years it doesn't that mean you don't have the faintest idea what you're talking about, right?

    How would you say Hwarang Do has been watered down? (watered down since you trained of course, the old days were always much better...). You mean the new material and the weapons for color belts were a big step down?
    I tested for 1.dan in 89, 3.dan in 98. It that very fast?
    How are the leaders arrogant and abusive?
    How much did you pay when you trained? "money, fees, more money" must be a lot of money!
    In the thread you also called Hwarang Do a cult and a business cult, let's hear about that!

    See, now you get to tell people what you mean.

    >> Any talent that went through the system has left <<

    Thanks, that means I don't have any talent :)
    Anyway, just because someone is not teaching, it doesnÂ’t mean they "have left", lot's of the black belts visit GM Lee. But it's true, there are so few Hwarang Do black belts (http://www.hwarangdo.com/certif.htm) that it can certainly be felt when someone stops training/teaching.
    I think the people who stop training (Hwarang Do or any other system) does so for various reasons. When an instructor forms his own organization most of the students follows the instructor rather than the style. This is no different in Hwarang Do from any other style. Last year the Scandinavian Ving Tsun organizations broke off from their old central organization, and all the students and instructors followed. That's how things works. Do you think there is *one* reason why people have left Hwarang Do?
     
  2. dohap

    dohap Guest

    You're right in some points, there are different reasons to leave HRD.
    If You got Qs about what belts left hrd, please answer Yourself, who were: Peter Kim, Klaus Wachsmann, Eric Lee, just to name a few and not only from the old days.

    Maybe the reasons are very deep? Maybe not only politics, but also true about people in WHRDA? About their "real" faces, different from these seen at web sites?

    I'm sorry to say this, but what You call "headquarters"? A school, where half-black belts are teaching? Or foreign Instructors?
    If there are any true talents there, tell me names.
    Eric Lee? ups, sorry... not anymore...
     
  3. Hwarang

    Hwarang Guest

    Sure there are many different reasons why people stop training, Hwarang Do and any other MA.

    Apart from Peter Kim I have meet the people you mention, but I was training in Los Angeles shortly after it happened, so I can tell you that all three's reasons for not beeing in WHRDA are as different as they can be.

    >> tell me names <<

    Who are you?
     
  4. dohap

    dohap Guest

    I know these reasons.
     
  5. Bob D.

    Bob D. Green Belt

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    Carsten your replies are pathetic. Because you don't seem to read well...I have studied Hwa Rang Do from 1979 to '86 then again from 1991 till today. So yes I have expertise.
    You live in Denmark...how many hours have you spent with an instuctor of HRD?
    When it comes to American instructors of HRD you have no clue what your talking about at all, so stay out of it!
     
  6. Bob D.

    Bob D. Green Belt

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    BTW. I have never talked bad about the art. I obviously love the art. I don't really see anyone talking bad about the art.

    Oh, and your comment about "low ranking blackbelts" is a joke!
    I would pay to see you teach any one of them something.




    (Mod Note: edited on user request)
     
  7. arnisador

    arnisador Sr. Grandmaster

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    I've heard good things about the system itself. It's the backstory that gets called into question.
     
  8. Touch Of Death

    Touch Of Death Sr. Grandmaster

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    Iv'e read that HRD Is a system that basicly borrows from other systems; because the Hwrang warrors were weapons specialists. As far as empty handed fighting goes, it originaly wasn't there, because after all they guarded the king. I can see where Korean stylists might look upon HRD as not legit.
     
  9. Hwarang

    Hwarang Guest

    >> You live in Denmark...how many hours have you spent with an instuctor of HRD? <<

    I've been lucky enough that my study and work has given me time to train full time. So when you say "train with a Hwarang Do instructor" I assume you mean higher ranking than me:
    From 1989 to 1990 I lived one year as a full time Hwarang Do student in GM Lee's school (6 months before testing for 1st dan and 6 months after), this was the same time Michael Hills, the Canadian chiefinstructor, lived there.
    I have since been back for longer and shorter periods (from 2 months to a week), so all in all I lived on the school a year and a half. In addition I've lived close to two years in Korean Hwarang Do dojangs when I was in Korean Studies. So all in all about 3 1/3 years full time with higher ranking instructors than myself.

    Now is the time when you say I'm too young to know what I'm talking about! Go on...

    >> When it comes to American instructors of HRD you have no clue what your talking about at all, so stay out of it! <<

    You prefer talking about Hwarang Do with people who don't know Hwarang Do?

    >> Oh, and your comment about "low ranking blackbelts" is a joke! <<

    Ok then, what rank in Hwarang Do are you? What rank was your instructor in Hwarang Do?

    What I'm saying is that some people in America are busy explaining people outside Hwarang Do all the things they think are wrong with the style (of course what they do is much, much better). They can explain in great detail what's missing, why things are wrong, how things should be done. But the last time they were active in Hwarang Do were years ago.
    This is *not* to claim Hwarang Do is the ultimate system, different styles for different people, just that what someone trained 20 years ago is not necessarily the same today.

    >> BTW. I have never talked bad about the art. I obviously love the art. I don't really see anyone talking bad about the art. <<

    Yes, I love it too. I think it's a pretty cool style.

    Thanks for your input Touch'O'Death

    I'll be happy to reply, but could you please repost in one of the other Hwarang Do history threads? I'm trying to keep each discussion in it's separate thread.
    Thanks!
     
  10. Bob D.

    Bob D. Green Belt

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    Boy, Thats a lot of time.

    Me:
    What does your comment have to do with mine??

    Where does anyone say this?

    to answer your question about me: As far as HRD, I know the traditional syllabus to 3rd dan and then alot more. I've been training - teaching Martial arts the better part of the last 20 years. My dan certificates where signed by Master Jesse Lechuga and Master Gil Kim. I have trained extensively with Bob Duggan, Jesse Lechuga, Vicente Montenegro, Randy Wanner, Ken Corona, and to a lesser degree Kjn. Hyun Jun Lee, KJN. Gil Kim, Kjn. Hwang.
    Rank has never been of importance to me, Knowledge has. I took from '80 to '83 to test thru to red belt, training 6 days a week. I was a working bodyguard and teacher of security professionals, and was fighting full contact all during that time and thru to '86 when I went back to college. I came back to training with my instructors in late '91 and have not stopped training or teaching since.
     
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  11. Bob D.

    Bob D. Green Belt

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    Gosh, 10 days and no Carsten?
     
  12. dohap

    dohap Guest

    I'm sad too...;)
     
  13. glad2bhere

    glad2bhere Master Black Belt

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    I think it is worthwhile to stress a few things (even if Casten isn't here right now.)

    First off, as a system the HRD people seem to have things down pretty well. Their training is full-bodied and their criteria and quality control is excellent. I have come to really admire the emphasis they place on Character, Values and Deportment. In fact I would probably head over to the HRD school right here in Chicago except for one and only one fly in the ointment. That is Joo Bang Lee himself.

    1.) I have a problem with someone who identifies himself as "supreme grandmaster". There is no such title in the Korean culture and no provenance for such a title. In fact there is no such title as "grandmaster". The title "master" seems to derive from a westernization of the title "songsaenin" or teacher by using the antiquated term "school master" instead.

    2.) I have a problem with someone who invokes a tradition, identifies himself as part and parcel of that tradition ("57 grandmaster or inheritor") and then qualifies that nine ways from Sunday to make it fit rationally.

    3.) I have a problem with someone who speaks of Character development and then is so rigid in his thinking that he can't seem to get along with anyone including family members.

    4.) I have a problem with special uniforms and special weapons and exclusivity on training. The para-military approach bespeaks a kind of cultism inconsistent with the values of the community in which the art is being taught.

    Now, In closing let me say that I have nearly the exact complaints about the Kuk Sool people of the WKSWA. I am a true admirer of that system as well. Their quality control and their curriculum are fabulous. But if joining means that my personality begins to approximate many of the people I have met from there, its "thanks, but no thanks."

    Best Wishes,

    Bruce
     
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  14. MichiganTKD

    MichiganTKD Master Black Belt

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    Hwa Rang Do did not exist until the 1960's. It certainly is not the direct descendant of the original Hwa Rang from 1500 years ago. Joo Bang Lee essentially lied to his students to claim credibility and lineage that he does not have. When pressed about the REAL background of his style, he hemmed and hawed and finally admitted that his version of Hwa Rang Do is a recent creation, having little if anything to do with authentic Korean history.
    I find it more than a little suspect that he claims to have studied under some monk to learn the techniques that form his style. It sounds like the plot to a bad martial arts film. In my opinion, Hwa Rang Do, Kuk Sool Won, and Hapkido are all basically the same style: circular movements, TKD kicking, obsolete weapons, goofy uniforms, and questionable histories.
     
  15. Doc

    Doc Senior Master

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    Interesting comments, that I may at least partially attest to. In the early to mid-sixties in my interaction with Hap Ki Do Master Sea Oh Choi, who opened the first HKD school in the U.S., The Lee Brothers were both students of Choi teaching HKD in Huntington Park. When we visited, the one thing that was clear is that Choi was not happy with the quality of their HKD teaching and had many heated discussions with them, as he urged his students to physically show them what was wrong with what was being taught. Choi's top student was Henry Lewe, who routinely put a hurtin' on the Lee's and their students.

    It wasn't long before they broke away and established "modern Hawrangdo." I have seen some impressive demonstrations as recently as about 12 years ago, but I'm not really up to speed on where they are now in their teaching.

    I have also had some interesting conversations with individuals who attempted to sale me the "ancient connection" not knowing I was there in their transition. I confirmed my memory with a class mate (Cliff Stewart) whose independent recollection is the same as mine.
     
  16. MichiganTKD

    MichiganTKD Master Black Belt

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    Why am I not surprised?
    Also, Lee has taken to calling his color belt curriculum "Tae Soo Do" which must be practiced to black belt before "Modern Hwa Rang Do" is taught. Those who remember Tae Kwon Do history will know that Tae Soo Do was the name used by the KTA immediately preceding Tae Kwon Do. It has nothing at all to do with Hwa Rang Do. Not only that, but apparently Lee has copyrighted the name Tae Soo Do. Once again, he is trying to link "Hwa Rang Do" with a history it has nothing to do with.
     
  17. Bujingodai

    Bujingodai Brown Belt

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    Personally I like some of the techniques that I have seen, mind you I have seen them in other arts as well.

    I am not fond of the uniforms either. IMO they just seem to ceremonial looking and unpractical.

    Other than that, the $$$ involved is what seemed to push me away from interest if my memory serves correct. But I am happy with what I do now.

    Just my 2 cents.
     
  18. arnisador

    arnisador Sr. Grandmaster

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    Not that it matters, but I always thought that their uniforms were very cool-looking. However, I can't disagree with "ceremonial and unpractical" at all!
     
  19. Bob D.

    Bob D. Green Belt

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    I've seen you claim this before. It does not wash with history. The Lee brothers where not here together in the 1960's. You must be thinking of someone else. Besides, they where both "Martial arts stars" in Korea by the mid 60's. They where never Se oh Choi's students.
    What HRD turned into after the 80's is a sad story, But I can assure you Choi or one of his students did not put a hurtin on Joo Sang Lee or Joo Bang Lee. It just did not happen. I know the players in question and the HRD students that where there full time in the 60's and 70's. I did not happen.
     
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  20. dosandojang

    dosandojang Guest

    Bob Duggan makes a lot of sense though in his writings. Too many contradictions in HRD....
     

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