The WC Tower of Babel

geezer

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One thing that keeps popping up here in the WC forum is the problem we all have of communicating about WC/WT technique since we tend to use somewhat different terminology both in English and in translated Cantonese. One thing that always bothered me was that when I try to use the Cantonese terms, even speakers of that language cannot easily understand me since I have no command of the Cantonese tonal structure. In the organization I belong to, we try to refer to the basic techniques using Cantonese terms as we understand them. We do it out of respect for the system's origin. Still, if we are in fact just speaking some kind of barely intelligible "pidgeon" dialect that only makes sense within our own organization and lineage, I wonder, "What's the point?"

In your schools, do you also try to use Cantonese terms for your techniques? And for those of you who, like me, are not proficient at Cantonese, does it bother you that you are probably just speaking gibberish? Would it be better if we just used a straightforward English translation for all the techniques? You know, call a tan-sau: "palm-up hand", a bong-sau: "wing arm", and so forth? Any thoughts?
 

Yoshiyahu

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Really there is a problem with English translation on many things in Wing Chun too. Another thing. Even people who speak english still have a hard time understanding other english speakers around the world. Since there vernacular,accent,slang and dialect sometimes deviates from what we are readily accustomed too.


One thing that keeps popping up here in the WC forum is the problem we all have of communicating about WC/WT technique since we tend to use somewhat different terminology both in English and in translated Cantonese. One thing that always bothered me was that when I try to use the Cantonese terms, even speakers of that language cannot easily understand me since I have no command of the Cantonese tonal structure. In the organization I belong to, we try to refer to the basic techniques using Cantonese terms as we understand them. We do it out of respect for the system's origin. Still, if we are in fact just speaking some kind of barely intelligible "pidgeon" dialect that only makes sense within our own organization and lineage, I wonder, "What's the point?"

In your schools, do you also try to use Cantonese terms for your techniques? And for those of you who, like me, are not proficient at Cantonese, does it bother you that you are probably just speaking gibberish? Would it be better if we just used a straightforward English translation for all the techniques? You know, call a tan-sau: "palm-up hand", a bong-sau: "wing arm", and so forth? Any thoughts?
 

hkfuie

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Same problem in Korean arts. Not everyone usus the same Korean terms I do. Then add in that some people like to throw in Japanese terminology on top of it and sometimes I can't follow what's going on. :eek:
 
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geezer

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Same problem in Korean arts. Not everyone usus the same Korean terms I do. Then add in that some people like to throw in Japanese terminology on top of it and sometimes I can't follow what's going on. :eek:

Nice to know that I'm not alone in felling this way. Then there's the FMA class I attend. In the FMAs they use English, Spanish, Tagalog... and since it's an eclectic system, terms from the zillion and one other languages spoken in the Philippines, not to mention an occaisional Japanese term for grapples taken from Judo or Jiu Jutsu. Sheesh!
 

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Honestly, if we all used English translations it would still be different. Like Yoshi was saying too.

Ideally, if we could get all the big masters together to decide what is called what and send out a memo to all the WC/WT students and teachers so they can have a standard set of terminology. I think this would be great, if ego's could be put aside long enough to make compromises to better people's understanding of the art. The terminology is out of control.

I believe the A.O.K came together to set up what official forms and terminology was to be used with the American Karate systems. This made their tournament circuits more managable, and more popular, and simpler. (I could be wrong, but it seems like they are much more organized in their systems)

Personally, I like the chinese or cantonese names, because it's represenative of the type of art I learn. And supposedly is to teach me the basic names so if I learn from another Sifu who may not speak my language much or at all. At least we should a small foundation to start with. When I took Tang Soo Do we learned everything in Korean. Seemed silly, utill the Grand Master came to clinic to test the students going for black belt. Master didn't speak a lick of English, he's was old, leave him alone. So all needed to know enough Korean to get through a belt test.
If we could get the Cantonese speakers to sit down and just agree on what to call everything, I think it would workout great.
 

Yoshiyahu

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I concur that Si-Je. But what we need now until that happens is a video or picture library. Often you say words I have no idea what are you talking about. it takes me awhile through english discussions to piece together what the meaning is. Like we were talking Kwun Sau and high low Gun Sau


But what I tend to do is post links of the terminology I am familiar with...There are some differences because its not my lineage but most of words in cantonese are very much the same. An I have adapted to them...

For me all the words I use will come from here!

1. http://www.springtimesong.com/wchands.htm

2. http://www.springtimesong.com/wchands2.htm

3. http://www.fongswingchun.com/terms.html

These three links will help you understand my terminology. So if you ever unsure check the links...



Honestly, if we all used English translations it would still be different. Like Yoshi was saying too.

Ideally, if we could get all the big masters together to decide what is called what and send out a memo to all the WC/WT students and teachers so they can have a standard set of terminology. I think this would be great, if ego's could be put aside long enough to make compromises to better people's understanding of the art. The terminology is out of control.

I believe the A.O.K came together to set up what official forms and terminology was to be used with the American Karate systems. This made their tournament circuits more managable, and more popular, and simpler. (I could be wrong, but it seems like they are much more organized in their systems)

Personally, I like the chinese or cantonese names, because it's represenative of the type of art I learn. And supposedly is to teach me the basic names so if I learn from another Sifu who may not speak my language much or at all. At least we should a small foundation to start with. When I took Tang Soo Do we learned everything in Korean. Seemed silly, utill the Grand Master came to clinic to test the students going for black belt. Master didn't speak a lick of English, he's was old, leave him alone. So all needed to know enough Korean to get through a belt test.
If we could get the Cantonese speakers to sit down and just agree on what to call everything, I think it would workout great.
 

Si-Je

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That's a good idea. If I could figure out how to post pictures on here, lol!
Hubbie uses a mixture of cantonese and mandrien.
 

yak sao

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Oh man geezer have you hit a raw nerve with me!

I've debated this for years with the WT folks. We pride ourselves in WT/WC/VT being a scientific, logical system yet we persist in communicating its priciples in a language that very few of us even speak.
Not very logical.
WT from its beginnings, in my understanding was designed as a scientific fighting system so the flowery terms were done away with.

"If your opponent is trying to punch under your bridge then sink your elbow(jum sau) if he's punching on the outside of your arm then disperse his punch (tan sau)" and yada yada.

I think because we don't speak the language, we've taken terms that were meant to be actions and made them things, and because of this ,WT has become all about structures and postures instead of the science of movement.

Now, all of this said I too use the cantonese terms, partly out of habit, but also for uniformity's sake. When my students train with other "WC" people they have a common terminology and also when my Si-fu, who is Chinese visits and uses these terms my students know what he's taliking about.......BUT I make sure they understand the English translation first and foremost.
 
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Yoshiyahu

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pictures..from you? your hard drive or from your school site or something?

Because either way they have to be uploaded on website. Than you can cut and paste the picture...

Thats how I do it. maybe make a free site upload your pictures to that site. Then cut and paste it in here where I am typing so others can see.


That's a good idea. If I could figure out how to post pictures on here, lol!
Hubbie uses a mixture of cantonese and mandrien.
 

Si-Je

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A scientific art it may be. But, "scientific" and "art".
Science is not completely falliable, and is changing all the time, what we thought was scientific years ago or yesterday is not so today. the Earth is not flat, the sun doesn't revolove around us, etc... To place all faith in science is incomplete to the "art".
It is an "art", meaning you learn your basics and improvise, become creative, make it your own, a part of your personality and skills. It becomes an expression of YOU, thus it is a martial art. Every Sifu and student understands and expresses WC/WT differently. With the same basics sure, and foundations in scientifically "proven" to be effective technique.
But, when you express chi sau, sparring, and battle, this is 'art', it is you through WC/WT.
Don't forget the art of the style, to lose that is to lose the spontaneity, and creativity of this "scientific" style. It will stop growing, evolving, and adapting if you forget the art.

(sorry, that's been something that's been bothering me for a long time. too much emphasis on "science" and I like the art part of it just as much)

Would you call forward force thought "science" or "art"?
I would call it art, because science hasn't been able to define or prove it yet. Would you call chi hardening your stance, body, and chi raising in Si Lim Tao science or art?
I would call it art, because Science has no idea where to begin to classify or explain how this works. Although Scienctist are starting to study this type of phenonomon now, they are still in the dark as to understanding how it actually works. If you use your artistic nature you will learn how to use this now, or you can wait for science to explain it to you.
Don't let go the "art" of the art. It doesn't take away any of WC/WT's scientific and factual realistic qualities. It just enhances them. Makes them beautiful.
 

Yoshiyahu

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I love your points. Great I totally get what your trying to say.
Wing Chun is an Martial Art. Martial means War and Art means form. So Martial Art is a Fighting Form or War Form. The Chinese word for Martial Art is WuShu.

Wikipedia says: The term wushu consists of two Chinese characters. 武 (wǔ), meaning, martial or military, and 術 (sh羅), which translates into discipline, skill or method. Together these form "wǔsh羅" meaning 'Art of fighting' but translated as "martial art".


Now the phrase Art is implied. Because what more is Art but a skill or discipline. Such as painting or writing and poetry which are skills acquired and improved through diligent practice. But none of them will protect you from danger!

Now what is Science? Isn't science also an art. From the science of biology a doctor skillfully circumsizes a young boy after eight days. Also a Scientist or Doctor may also remove someones tonsils. This is an art as well. They work with their hands an mind. What more is Art but a self expression.

Now the part where you err at. Is when discussing Science as separate from Art. The word Martial Art is a new terminology. Which comes from westerners. But to separate the form from science is wrong. Mainly because when you speak of Science we mostly speak of it from a western point of view.

Si-Je you said:"Would you call forward force thought "science" or "art"?
I would call it art, because science hasn't been able to define or prove it yet."

Actually this theory was thought of and defined by Science. Not Western Science but Eastern Science. The Theory of Chi and Jing and Shen are not Western ideologies but they are Eastern Philospies. So although Western Science can not explain it. The answers you seek are found with the originators of the Art. Science is an art that requires improvisions and creativity too. Western Science is forever changing true. But Wing Chun is not based on Western Science it is based on Chinese Science. There is a drastic difference.

Western Science is knowledge or a system of knowledge covering general truths or the operation of general laws especially as obtained and tested through scientific method.

Western Art is skill acquired by experience, study, or observation.

Gung Fu essentially means Great Skill through Effort.

In short Acquired Skill.

So the Art part comes from both studying the principles observing the keys and practicing the forms, drills and basics. An The science comes to play once you have acquired the knowledge and skill. So the main thing is to practice and study your Art. Study by looking at the Principles, Maxims, Kuen Kuit, Seventeen keys, Theories, Cantonese Terminology and notes you take in class under a skilled Sifu. Your observation comes by way of watching your Sifu demostrate self defense techniques, Forms and Basics steps and punches. Also you Observed your partners reaction to pressure and lack there of during Chi Sau. You make observations as you spar with others. You also can observe by watching other styles of Wing Chun and conversing with the people on paltalk. As for Skill or experience. This is simple, it means you must practice. Work on your foot work, Punches, Stance, Root, Sil Lim Tau, Chum Kiu, Chi Sau, Wooden man, Bil Gee, Deflections, Blocks, kicks, Sparring etc.

Experience, Observation and Study are equal parts to your Art. Your War Form is nothing with out all three. But we must make notice that the Art and Science are one in the same according to Chinese ideology. For one must not only study but also practice their Science for it to be effective. I can study how to break bricks all day long. But can my hand break bricks with out the science applied. So Wing Chun is science but it is applied science. Science with Application is the same as Art. Because Art is the Study, Observation and Experience of Wing Chun.

I hope I didn't bash your statement too badly. But I wanted to make a point that Chinese Science is light years difference from western science, Western Scientist who still can not tell you what an atom really is or how humans are able to think, speak and move. Western Science can not tell you these things. So how can they begin to discuss chi which is a concept totally foriegn to westerners but not to Chinese.

Wing Chun is in fact a Science. But Science is just another word for Art.

In Western Science how do you form theories. First you address the Premise then you use your experience to form a conjecture. Then you Deduce a prediction from that explanation. Then you Test or Experiment with the premise or Hypotheses. After you test you observe the out come. The Result of the test will be the basis for the Theory.

For instance My Hypothesis would be this. If you practice a certain way for three months you should be able to knock Mike Tyson down with a single punch, if he just stands there an let you punch him in the face.
So the premise would be if Mike Tyson Falls or would be able to take your punch with out falling after three months of you gaining strength through practice?

Now lets identify the practice.

The practice involves:

Each Day six days a week you do the following

1.Punch a Two hundred lbs punching bag full force while moving forward in your stance. Each time you reset and step and punch contiously for one hour.

2.Practice hitting a Wall Bag with steel shots each day for one hour with the use of Dit Da Jow.

3.Do one Thousand push ups each day.

4.Do one Thousand Chin ups or pull ups each day.

5.Practice rotating your waist and punching the air one for one hourEach Day.

6.Practice bench pressing your weight increasing the repetitions each week Three Days a Week.

7.Run five miles each day

8.Practice Chi Kung for an hour each day.


The Test would be after your three months or 90 Days training period were completed. Then you would have to allow Mike Tyson to stand infront of you while you punched him as hard as you could in his face using your waist and hips behind your punch as you step forward with front step. The Conclusion would be if you could make Mike Tyson Fall down on his ****. If you did then Hypothesis was correct and you discovered a new Theory. But it took observation of results from the test and it also took practice on your part. So Science is really Just Art and Art is really Just applied Science. They are two sides of one Coin.

Got a quarter anyone Lets flip it Heads or Tails?

Lets test the outcome?


A scientific art it may be. But, "scientific" and "art".
Science is not completely falliable, and is changing all the time, what we thought was scientific years ago or yesterday is not so today. the Earth is not flat, the sun doesn't revolove around us, etc... To place all faith in science is incomplete to the "art".
It is an "art", meaning you learn your basics and improvise, become creative, make it your own, a part of your personality and skills. It becomes an expression of YOU, thus it is a martial art. Every Sifu and student understands and expresses WC/WT differently. With the same basics sure, and foundations in scientifically "proven" to be effective technique.
But, when you express chi sau, sparring, and battle, this is 'art', it is you through WC/WT.
Don't forget the art of the style, to lose that is to lose the spontaneity, and creativity of this "scientific" style. It will stop growing, evolving, and adapting if you forget the art.

(sorry, that's been something that's been bothering me for a long time. too much emphasis on "science" and I like the art part of it just as much)

Would you call forward force thought "science" or "art"?
I would call it art, because science hasn't been able to define or prove it yet. Would you call chi hardening your stance, body, and chi raising in Si Lim Tao science or art?
I would call it art, because Science has no idea where to begin to classify or explain how this works. Although Scienctist are starting to study this type of phenonomon now, they are still in the dark as to understanding how it actually works. If you use your artistic nature you will learn how to use this now, or you can wait for science to explain it to you.
Don't let go the "art" of the art. It doesn't take away any of WC/WT's scientific and factual realistic qualities. It just enhances them. Makes them beautiful.
 

Si-Je

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That was gooood! :)

I was thinking from a western scientific mindset, mainly because all our students do. When you stress the 'science" of WT/WC then start trying to incorporate chi, energy, or forward force to much they look at you like you want them to practice witchcraft. lol!

(we're in the bible belt, people won't even meditate because their afraid your going to make them pray to Buddah. seriously..)
Alot of the time we can't even use the "word" chi or qi without people getting "spooked" or uncomfortable. Alot of folks here think chinese martial arts is basically a religion and they don't want to convert.
That's why everyone here likes karate, TKD or MMA. (alot of TKD and karate schools here are "affiliated" as christian martial arts schools)
ex. One woman came to watch the class and saw the first part of Si Lim Tao form, and said, "I know that movement, that is "praying to buddah". I'm not signing up for this class. Goodby."
Other teacher/friend of mine his teacher took out the first part of Si Lim Tao form just to retain his student's for this very same reason.

So, stress the science, but leave out the chi, that's what happens in alot of styles down here. One "competitor" WC teacher here teaches his students without the knowledge of chi or forward force, so, they have NONE. They focus on circles, flow drills, their chi sau has NO forward force at all.
But, if you embrace the word "art" in the style and emphasize that equally people are more relaxed. You can teach the chi/qi as a "relaxation" drill or excorsize, you can speak about forward force thought as a "creative thought" that you think in your head as you do chi sau.
This will produce the same desired effect, while not making anyone feel like your compromising their belief system.
The Tai Chi lady that teaches at the rec center can only teach the flowing and relaxing emphasis on her tai chi forms in class. No one wants to learn the combat, or defense of it, much less get to far into the "chinese mindset of science and chi."

Back to semantics and attention to the wrong kind of details that causes so much misunderstanding in the world. Tomato, tomatao.
Chi, qi, energy, spirit of God within you, whatever you call it, it's the same thing.
You tell people it's a martial 'art" technique, that's just part of the history, respect to the founders, and artistic form of the style, they'll relax and stay inrolled long enough to learn the whole Si Lim Tao form. "Hey, it's just part of the Art of Wing Chun."

If you focus on "science" to a westener too much, that's what you'll get is too much analyzing of the techniques, which I see too much of. People getting hung up on one technique, trying to pin it down and disect it right in the middle of a chi sau drill, instead of flowing and feeling.
"oh, wait! That's just physics! Did you see the trajectory my arm took to intercept yours using your velocisity to propell my fist harder into your stomache?" etc.... and so on.... Too much "science" not enough flow. Chi sau is totally lost to those two students.
I hear it on board too.
Which is all well and good. And I do love the science of WC/WT, but I feel it overshadows the other half of Wing Chun in the western world. The Chinese can merge the two, but westerners must learn how to do this at a big disadvantage of not being raised to think that way to begin with. So, they largly become limited by their scientific knowlege and understanding of the 'Art".
That's all I ment.
That's more descriptive of the area we teach at and the mental predijuices, limitations, misconceptions, and innocent ignorance that we have to somehow get past to reach the student.
 

Yoshiyahu

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Yea everyone is different. I am type of student I look at Wing Chun from Fighting aspect and From a Theory aspect. Science and Art rarely come out my mouth. I call it an Art but when I think of Art I think of Art of War. Or the Philosphy of fighting. But As for actual Art. I hate Art with a passion. So if I went to a school an they were trying to teach me Wing Chun from a artistic point of view I probably not go there again.
My wife loves Art she probably would be able to enjoy it or love it. But the reason I learn Wing Chun was to fight with. My Sifu taught it to me from an fighting aspect the Science came later. He Shared Theory with me as a teenager but I didn't know it was Theory. He started off drilling the principals. But to men principals were just rules not science. But if it had been taught to me as an art form I would totally given up on Wing Chun. I hated all Art forms as child. I don't even like watching sports on Television. I hate football and baseball with a passion. I really ate drawing and painting. The only time I used poetry was when I was teenager and that was usually Just "Game". To get in some girls pants. I really didn't care for poetry But I use as way to get what I wanted. So for me Art is total turn off. Someone would have to show me the science of it over the art for it to click with me.

The key though is practice. People need to stop trying to plan and think about it and just do it. Get the muscle memory and not mental memory. Go home and meditate on what you were doing. Lol...

As for praying Thrice to Buddah. Thats what Sihings calls it. He says all the time because He knows I hate it. LOL...But I tell people simple pray to Yahweh, Take Buddah out of the equation. When you meditate do so with Yahweh First. Make him the center. When I meditate I typically do so concerning techniques. Now if I am in a stance I meditate on moving the Chi from Dan Tien.

Instead of speaking of Chi you can just call it energy. An you speak of the spirit, Which in biblical terms is consider the breath. I can covert things really easy so a Christian can understand it simply. But the problem is people don't realize WC is not some mystical supernatural style. I was explaning the Chi to my wife one day. She was like it sounds like demon worship...lol...I shared with her its just natural. Just a foriegn word used by the chinese to explain the natural electrical impulses in your body that fires off in your brain and causes your body to move and breath and talk. In other words everyone body is filled with energy and gives off a pulse. That is what the Chi is. You can cultivate it to make yourself stronger for instance have the ability to knock someone out or rupture someone spleen from a punch. But all you do is practice practice to build up to that strength and power. Nothing supernatural about it.

As for Meditate and the bible: There are numerous times in Scripture people did Meditation. This is something not practice today in Christianity. Because they have western ideology. But the bible is Eastern book. It is not filled with Western Thought but Eastern thought. Which many people fail to realize.

Genesis 24:63 And Isaac went out to meditate in the field at the eventide: and he lifted up his eyes, and saw, and, behold, the camels were coming.

Psalm 63:6 When I remember thee upon my bed, and meditate on thee in the night watches.

Psalm 77:12 I will meditate also of all thy work, and talk of thy doings.

Psalm 119:148 Mine eyes prevent the night watches, that I might meditate in thy word.

Psalm 1:2 But his delight is in the torah of Yahweh; and in his torah doth he meditate day and night.


The word Meditate can be found in Authorize King James Version.

According to Merriam-Webster Dictionary Meditate means to engage in contemplation or reflection.

It Also means to focus one's thoughts on : reflect on or ponder over.

So whats wrong with Meditation You do not have to do mantras and say ohm. Just simply close your eyes and focus on your Wing Chun, Chi, Technique etc etc.

When you strecth and think about your muslces relaxing thats meditation. When you practice punching and kicking and put focus in your strikes that meditation. You Either breath naturally or use a certain type of Breathe. Either way your breathing.lol...

I don't get why people make things so hard to understand. Everyone doesn't have the same dedication. Somepeople are too nerdy and can not get it. Which is to gain skill you have to thoughtfully practice. You have to practice with Focus. I learn more practicing on my own than I do from classes. Its amazing...But that comes from years of practice.

That was gooood! :)

I was thinking from a western scientific mindset, mainly because all our students do. When you stress the 'science" of WT/WC then start trying to incorporate chi, energy, or forward force to much they look at you like you want them to practice witchcraft. lol!

(we're in the bible belt, people won't even meditate because their afraid your going to make them pray to Buddah. seriously..)
Alot of the time we can't even use the "word" chi or qi without people getting "spooked" or uncomfortable. Alot of folks here think chinese martial arts is basically a religion and they don't want to convert.
That's why everyone here likes karate, TKD or MMA. (alot of TKD and karate schools here are "affiliated" as christian martial arts schools)
ex. One woman came to watch the class and saw the first part of Si Lim Tao form, and said, "I know that movement, that is "praying to buddah". I'm not signing up for this class. Goodby."
Other teacher/friend of mine his teacher took out the first part of Si Lim Tao form just to retain his student's for this very same reason.

So, stress the science, but leave out the chi, that's what happens in alot of styles down here. One "competitor" WC teacher here teaches his students without the knowledge of chi or forward force, so, they have NONE. They focus on circles, flow drills, their chi sau has NO forward force at all.
But, if you embrace the word "art" in the style and emphasize that equally people are more relaxed. You can teach the chi/qi as a "relaxation" drill or excorsize, you can speak about forward force thought as a "creative thought" that you think in your head as you do chi sau.
This will produce the same desired effect, while not making anyone feel like your compromising their belief system.
The Tai Chi lady that teaches at the rec center can only teach the flowing and relaxing emphasis on her tai chi forms in class. No one wants to learn the combat, or defense of it, much less get to far into the "chinese mindset of science and chi."

Back to semantics and attention to the wrong kind of details that causes so much misunderstanding in the world. Tomato, tomatao.
Chi, qi, energy, spirit of God within you, whatever you call it, it's the same thing.
You tell people it's a martial 'art" technique, that's just part of the history, respect to the founders, and artistic form of the style, they'll relax and stay inrolled long enough to learn the whole Si Lim Tao form. "Hey, it's just part of the Art of Wing Chun."

If you focus on "science" to a westener too much, that's what you'll get is too much analyzing of the techniques, which I see too much of. People getting hung up on one technique, trying to pin it down and disect it right in the middle of a chi sau drill, instead of flowing and feeling.
"oh, wait! That's just physics! Did you see the trajectory my arm took to intercept yours using your velocisity to propell my fist harder into your stomache?" etc.... and so on.... Too much "science" not enough flow. Chi sau is totally lost to those two students.
I hear it on board too.
Which is all well and good. And I do love the science of WC/WT, but I feel it overshadows the other half of Wing Chun in the western world. The Chinese can merge the two, but westerners must learn how to do this at a big disadvantage of not being raised to think that way to begin with. So, they largly become limited by their scientific knowlege and understanding of the 'Art".
That's all I ment.
That's more descriptive of the area we teach at and the mental predijuices, limitations, misconceptions, and innocent ignorance that we have to somehow get past to reach the student.
 

Si-Je

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All that sounds great to me, we don't have a problem with all that. Just folks in our area get really weird.
Takes me by surprise sometimes the things people say about certian aspects of learning WC/WT.

You describe chi to them as natural and in and around everyone, the laugh and quote 'Star Wars' -"use the force, Luke!" (I love Star Wars, so this analogy works for me too. lol!)
It's just hard to get them to take it seriously, and if they take it too seriously, they can get scared or upset.
I guess that's why there aren't hardly ANY WT/WC schools here.
 

Si-Je

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I guess art isn't for everyone, I love it. Was a music major in high school, played tenor sax for 7 years, jazz band all that good stuff. I usually see music in everything, even WT/WC, it's all jazz to me. lol!

Love poetry too, write it on occasion :) I've done that for years. Great form of expression in the written word.
Never had a talent for drawing or painting or clay though unfortunately. :( Have a active and visual imagination and can't draw. poo.

But, I do like the idea of a picture or video library of everyone's terminology, that does sound like a project worth doing. But, we may really need the help of a linguist, and that would be a daunting project indeed.
 

Nolerama

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Geezer, I think you hit something right on the head. Terminology from art to art can sometimes be an inhibitor to real training.

Take some grappling arts. In every art, there's a specific name for a single leg takedown. But there's a ton of grappling arts, so there's a ton of names that practitioners of even related arts might not understand each other.

For me, terminology retention is a turn-off. Don't get me wrong. If someone gave me a pop quiz relevant to my time in MMA, then I'd probably (hopefully) know what I'm talking about. But I never sought out the proper terminology.

A punch is a punch. A kick is a kick. Show me the variations and allow me to do them. That's about it.

Honestly, and with full respect to traditional arts, I don't have the patience to learn a million different terms for a leg block. Nor do I want to learn another language in that manner. I've seen people bog their training down, and mine as well, when they try to correct other people on the "proper" term for a technique.

And just like how a punch is just a punch (with countless variations) an excuse is just an excuse (with countless variations) and that's how I see confusion/arguing over terminology rights in the MAs: an excuse to detract from training.
 

Si-Je

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That is true about terminology getting laborious, but it's origional intent, I think, was to give the practitioners a basic foundation of knowledge so they could talk and explain technique easier.
It seems it has deteiorated far from that and is a pain.

I'll holler at you guys laters when I've got some video, or just post on youtube.
 

Yoshiyahu

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Yea, Your right. I was talking to my Sihing yesterday was having a great conversation about the force and the power of the darkside. We even spoke about Darth Maul, Anakin, and Dark Sith Lord. An how it interelates.





All that sounds great to me, we don't have a problem with all that. Just folks in our area get really weird.
Takes me by surprise sometimes the things people say about certian aspects of learning WC/WT.

You describe chi to them as natural and in and around everyone, the laugh and quote 'Star Wars' -"use the force, Luke!" (I love Star Wars, so this analogy works for me too. lol!)
It's just hard to get them to take it seriously, and if they take it too seriously, they can get scared or upset.
I guess that's why there aren't hardly ANY WT/WC schools here.
 

Yoshiyahu

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Yea. With the library...they have glossaries online with the terminology already printed...So its just tranference.


I guess art isn't for everyone, I love it. Was a music major in high school, played tenor sax for 7 years, jazz band all that good stuff. I usually see music in everything, even WT/WC, it's all jazz to me. lol!

Love poetry too, write it on occasion :) I've done that for years. Great form of expression in the written word.
Never had a talent for drawing or painting or clay though unfortunately. :( Have a active and visual imagination and can't draw. poo.

But, I do like the idea of a picture or video library of everyone's terminology, that does sound like a project worth doing. But, we may really need the help of a linguist, and that would be a daunting project indeed.
 

KamonGuy2

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I bought a book by Shaun Rawcliffe the other day. It blew me away how relevant it was to what I did. However, the names were slightly different or had slightly different theory about what the move was for. (It wasn't the authors fault - he clearly stated that the book wasn't intended to be a 'my way is the right way' kind of book)

It is always interesting to see how people describe certain movements

For example : A jum sao to one school could easily be a muen sao to another school

It doesn't make the move any less valid, and one probably isn't right over the other

Standardizing wing chun would mean that certain schools would no longer be 'unique' and would therefore lose money
And then you would get people arguing about who would write down the 'correct way'. That's partially why there are so many politics in wing chun

In Kamon we just take a very casual approach. We train the basic movements (bong sao, tan sao etc), but do not get wrapped up in knowing every single detail of the description of the movement

I'd rather do a move well than know what it is called. As an instructor I work hard learning the varying descriptions of moves and why in Kamon we call it what it is. But I know many people who don't bother with that. They are just there to learn how to defend themselves and they aren't bothered withwhat a move is called
 
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