Martial Arts and their Religious Philosphies

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ThuNder_FoOt

Guest
Some Martial Arts have religious philosophies of which the techniques were based upon. For example, some Gung Fu systems are based on Buddhist and Taoist principles. What is your opinion if say, The religion (i.e. the principles) of a given art were swapped? Can one truly understand the full meaning of what is practiced? Let's have a friendly discussion :D.
 
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markulous

Guest
If a particular (I don't like using this word but,) "style" suits me I don't care where it came from. I am here now and it works for me. I am not a buddhist of 200 BC. If it was swapped and say came from hinduism or whatever in 200 BC. Either way it doesn't change the way that "style" is and how it applys to me. Because this is the 21st century, I am a tall white guy, I live in the USA, what applys to me is going to be different no matter what.
 
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ThuNder_FoOt

Guest
Originally posted by markulous
If a particular (I don't like using this word but,) "style" suits me I don't care where it came from. I am here now and it works for me. I am not a buddhist of 200 BC. If it was swapped and say came from hinduism or whatever in 200 BC. Either way it doesn't change the way that "style" is and how it applys to me. Because this is the 21st century, I am a tall white guy, I live in the USA, what applys to me is going to be different no matter what.

This is true, but what of the principles of a said Martial Art? For example, Shaolin Long Fist (along with alot of others) is based of the principles of Chi. The vital points struck, and power gained is based on this principle. If one were to change the spirituality of the art, don't you change the art itself? How can... say a "Christian or Catholic " know of said principles? I don't believe the art would be as effective in that sense.
 
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markulous

Guest
Originally posted by ThuNder_FoOt
This is true, but what of the principles of a said Martial Art? For example, Shaolin Long Fist (along with alot of others) is based of the principles of Chi. The vital points struck, and power gained is based on this principle. If one were to change the spirituality of the art, don't you change the art itself? How can... say a "Christian or Catholic " know of said principles? I don't believe the art would be as effective in that sense.

Quite possibly it does change it. I think it makes it more effective by changing it. If our art doesn't evolve and we don't base it off of the principle of the person using it then I think you are restricting yourself.

Jiu-Jitsu example was based off of a warrior that was unarmed fight against samurai that had swords. I think if you still trained by this, you would find a big surprise waiting for you when you get attacked at an ATM machine.

The Christian and Catholic example is a pretty good one. To me, I think people, whether they are christian, catholic, morman, whatever, should go around and learn what they can from each religion then venture out on there own. Form their own thoughts and beliefs, then go venture out and create their own spiritual path. Again I think it's more effective.
 
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Dennis_Mahon

Guest
And, what if they choose the wrong path?
 
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markulous

Guest
Well I am not sure. But to me, if you are open minded and truely express yourself then you are on the right path already.
 
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Dennis_Mahon

Guest
But to me, if you are open minded and truely express yourself then you are on the right path already.

What is it about the qualities of "open mindedness" and "true expression" that indicate one is on the right path?
 
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markulous

Guest
Dennis_Mahon said:
But to me, if you are open minded and truely express yourself then you are on the right path already.

What is it about the qualities of "open mindedness" and "true expression" that indicate one is on the right path?

What it says in my quote is a start.
 
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ThuNder_FoOt

Guest
markulous said:
What it says in my quote is a start.

I can definately understand your points, as I am currently learning JKDC under Dan Inosanto's system. But when talking about non-conforming... there are a few guildlines that are pretty straight forward across the board. For example, we all have the same skeletal structure (save deformities), we all have the same circtory systems, and so on... everything that defines us as human beings.

Bruce Lee's philosophy acknowledges the belief in chi and its existance as well. If you change the religious philosophies, I believe one may miss the entire point. Take the Chi Sao exercise example for instance... a Christian, Jew, Catholic, etc. may not be able to understand this principle without first partially excepting the existance of Chi which is orginated in Eastern pihlosophies and religious beliefs. Which in turn, equals an acceptance or belief in that said religion. So if you remove that particular aspect of the art, how can you truly understand the principles? the foundations the art is built upon?

It just leaves me guessing. Everyone has the right to express their freedom of religion, but it would seem that conflict would ocur when it comes to the Martial Arts.

THuNdeR_FoOT
 
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Dennis_Mahon

Guest
markulous said:
What it says in my quote is a start.

You mean this?

No style, no technique. Be free. Be ready to apply truth. The mind must be emancipated of old habits, prejudices, and restrictions. Thus conflict will come to rest. --- Bruce Lee

How does the above tell me whether or not a given action is right or wrong?
 

Touch Of Death

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I like what my instructor said that Ed Parker said. Ed Parker did not deny that some of these religious philosophies had value, or that through meditation you could reach levels of martial art proficiancy; however, he felt that you were more likely to reach your goals by good old fasion hard work and practice. I think that his feelings had a lot to do with the fact that Mr. Parker was already deeply religious and felt no need to extract spirituality through various methods of combat training. I only know this second hand, but I think this outlook had a lot to do with the development and success of AK as we know it.
Sean
 
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markulous

Guest
Dennis_Mahon said:
You mean this?

How does the above tell me whether or not a given action is right or wrong?

You asked the qualities of open-mindedness and true expression. If you follow what my quote says it will help you be that way.
 
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Dennis_Mahon

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You asked the qualities of open-mindedness and true expression. If you follow what my quote says it will help you be that way.

Actually, what I asked was:What is it about the qualities of "open mindedness" and "true expression" that indicate one is on the right path?
I see nothing in your quote that suggest that "open-mindedness" and "true expression" are any more conducive to determining whether any given action is right or wrong than "close-mindedness" and "false pretenses" are.
 
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markulous

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Well that's what works for me. I try to be as open minded as I can about things and just do what I feel is right. If I am truely expressing myself and following my morals I know I am doing right for me because I feel I am doing right. So again that's what works for me.
 

Eldritch Knight

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Traditional kendo schools (like the one I practiced in while in Japan) usually bow to a Shinto or a Buddhist deity to protect them and give them power. In a more secular school, this is excluded, but there is nonetheless a bow respecting the spirits of all those who came before and their teachings that allowed kendo to exist. The korean version of kendo, kumdo, is very similar (almost identical) in form and technique, but excludes this bow acknowledging a higher existence. I believe that this is one of kumdo's failings. The fact that practitioners of it aren't expected to realize that there are things better than them hinders their own spiritual and mental growth essential in sword arts) and makes it simply a sport practiced to do the sport. Its like taking the chi out of gung fu - you lose part of the art without it.
 
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Dennis_Mahon

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markulous said:
Well that's what works for me. I try to be as open minded as I can about things and just do what I feel is right. If I am truely expressing myself and following my morals I know I am doing right for me because I feel I am doing right. So again that's what works for me.

You haven't given this much thought, have you? "I know I am doing right for me because I feel I am doing right" isn't a reason, it's an excuse. You could use that to justify the worst human behavior.
 
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markulous

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No I haven't given it much "thought". Thinking is for trying to do an equation or to remember a phone number. To me, "feeling" is what someone should be doing. That first little instinct that you feel is 99% of the time right.

And I'm not using that to justify anything. If someone is doing what they feel is right and are examples "of the worst human behavior" then so be it. If they are doing what they feel is right and helping out old people and teaching kids to be better people then so be it. It's yin and yang. They oppose each other but without both there would be no balance.
 
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Dennis_Mahon

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markulous said:
No I haven't given it much "thought". Thinking is for trying to do an equation or to remember a phone number.

And, apparently, telling Christians, Mormons, et al how they should practice their religion:
To me, I think people, whether they are christian, catholic, morman, whatever, should go around and learn what they can from each religion then venture out on there own. Form their own thoughts and beliefs, then go venture out and create their own spiritual path. Again I think it's more effective.

marklous said:
To me, "feeling" is what someone should be doing. That first little instinct that you feel is 99% of the time right.

How long have you been studying the martial arts?

markulous said:
And I'm not using that to justify anything.

Of course you are; you're using it to justify your innability to explain why the qualities of"open-mindedness" and "true expression" are any more inciative that anyone is on the right path than the qualities of"close-mindedness" and "false pretenses" are.

markulous said:
If someone is doing what they feel is right and are examples "of the worst human behavior" then so be it. If they are doing what they feel is right and helping out old people and teaching kids to be better people then so be it.

And, using your logic, if someone is doing what they feel is right and are flying airplanes into buildings or blowing up buses full of children, so be it.

markulous said:
It's yin and yang. They oppose each other but without both there would be no balance.

It's intellectual laziness, a refusal to even try to understand the world around you. It's going through the motions of living life without living it at all.
 
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markulous

Guest
Dennis_Mahon said:
It's intellectual laziness, a refusal to even try to understand the world around you. It's going through the motions of living life without living it at all.

Read some buddhism then you might understand.

And, apparently, telling Christians, Mormons, et al how they should practice their religion

I never told anyone how they have to do anything. This is about ME. If you noticed I put "To Me". If didn't made that clear enough I apologise.

Originally Posted by marklous
To me, "feeling" is what someone should be doing. That first little instinct that you feel is 99% of the time right.

You asked how long I have been studying marial arts from this statement. Obviously if you stop and think when your fighting your going get your butt kicked. And I have been studying about 3 years.
 
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MisterMike

Guest
I agree. If you look at the Japanese arts and how tightly integrated Zen became with them it show's you the incredible lead they have over the "Americanized" versions. And Zen is not even spiritual or philosophical. It was used to let the practitioner look deeply within themselves and learn to teach themselves discipline.

Whether it makes a good matial art technique is something different. You could still be disciplined at practicing something useless.(Hey, at least you'll have character.) I think that it is good that this type of training can still be found but it is not for everyone. We do not live like they did 100's of years ago. This is why you have "self-defense classes" and "sport karate." Totally different reasons for practicing the arts.
 

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