The Metaphor

Discussion in 'General Martial Arts Talk' started by bushidomartialarts, Jul 12, 2007.

  1. bushidomartialarts

    bushidomartialarts Senior Master

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    So my instructor plays piano. He was recently saying how it's just like martial arts. Each song is like a kata for his fingers. It got me thinking.

    Martial training consists of four things.

    Basics: learning and practicing the building blocks of your style.
    Technique/Drill: practicing the application of your style in safe conditions
    Kata: formal, artistic practice of your style
    Kumite: competitive and/or emotionally charged practice in a live fire, but controlled, environment.

    With piano, the kata would be individual songs. Basics would be the scales and theory practice. Technique would simply be rehearsal. Kumite would be live performance.

    How about applying the metaphor to other hobbies?

    For example, the other thing I do is writing. I journal, write sappy poetry, blog. I've had fiction and nonfiction published.

    For writing, basics would be the spelling and grammar drills I used to do in school. Technique would be every time I communicate via writing. Kata is probably journaling: it's practice where I can play and know nobody is watching. The closest thing to Kumite would be submitting manuscripts: it's emotionally charged every time I do it.

    How about y'all?
     
  2. Nyrotic

    Nyrotic Green Belt

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    Learning a new language...
     
  3. HKphooey

    HKphooey Senior Master

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    I started to play golf 3 years ago and I am amzed by the similarities...

    If you start out right you learn the basics of a swing.

    You then learn the anatomy of body and how it relates to your swing. What generates power, accuracy and stability.

    Repetition/Practice is the key to a great golf game.

    If if start off learning incorrect basic fundamentals, correcting them becomes very difficult.

    Many beginners thing power is generated by trying to kill the ball, but it is by using a sold base and good swing fundamentals that one hits the long ball.

    Your clubs are like your techniques. Once you learn how to use them, you then have to learn when/why to use them.

    The course is similar to the fighting environment. Sand traps, water hazards, rought, etc are the "what if" situations. Once we are in thse situations, how do we modify our play.

    The mental aspect of the game is wqhat suprised me the most. Man, how quickly your game can go to ***** if you mind is not focused.

    Lastly, there are tons of videos my self-proclaimed masters of the game and products to go with them.... Whooah, just like the back of an issue of BBM. :)
     
  4. seasoned

    seasoned MT Senior Moderator Staff Member

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    I definitely feel that there are vast parallels with martial arts and anything else that has the word art attached to the name. It is not only expressing ourselves outwardly but also connecting with our inner self for the complete package. Your post touches on a part of any art that we as martial artists do not address enough, and that is the feeling part.
     
  5. qi-tah

    qi-tah Brown Belt

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    I am a painter and have often thought about how my MA practice affects my painting. Not really as one being a metaphor for the other, but highlighting the differences and similarities between the two and how they can inform each other.
    I guess the most important and obvious divergence is that martial arts is something that is done in the moment, something that has to be bodily re-created everytime, whereas painting produces a static, enduring image. To try to bring some of MA's fluid energy to my painting, to be more in the moment and less focused on outcome is something that i've found very useful.
    The way i discipline myself to train when i don't feel like it has also influenced the way i approach the work of painting - with both i know that i might feel sluggish at first, but i'll feel much better once i'm done. (Discipline is a hugely understated part of contempory visual arts practice i reckon!)
    Also, the old artist's saying "never forget that paint is paint" is something i find useful to remember in a MA context... in both painting and MA it is easy to get seduced by style and appearence/image, and forget the fundamental building blocks which allow the expression of style. If i paint a pot, it is both pot and paint. If i practice my old eight palms, it is both ba gua and my own body. The expression of both is a function of how well i understand (and can manipulate) those fundamentals.

    Finding connections between different disciplines, whatever thay might be and no matter how different they appear on the surface, is something i find immensely valuable.123
     

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