whats your take on "alive" concepts

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rmcrobertson

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After the last long quote from StraightBlast, I think I like 'em. Why? because that quote offered a good blast to the guys who fantasize they're warriors and have completely-unrealistic notions about "combat," to go with the blast to those who really are simply repeating without thinking.

However, if you think that martial arts only teaches fighting, you're ignoring every single pronouncment by the very people most often cited in claims that martial arts only teach fighting. And, you're missing out on the transformative power of the arts.
 

Old Fat Kenpoka

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rmcrobertson said:
After the last long quote from StraightBlast, I think I like 'em. Why? because that quote offered a good blast to the guys who fantasize they're warriors and have completely-unrealistic notions about "combat," to go with the blast to those who really are simply repeating without thinking.

However, if you think that martial arts only teaches fighting, you're ignoring every single pronouncment by the very people most often cited in claims that martial arts only teach fighting. And, you're missing out on the transformative power of the arts.

Robert: I personally do not question the transformative power of the arts. My many years of "traditional" martial arts training has really helped me out, and it has really helped others out as well. There are indeed many health, spiritual, social, physical, and fight-training benefits to traditoinal martial arts training. The question of this debate is regarding the fight-training benefits of "alive" or resisting-partner training vs. static or kata training.
 
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rmcrobertson

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Garsh, like, rilly/ I thought it was a discussion loosely organized by a topic, in which responses to other posters was part of the game.

Let me explain the connections, since you've chosen to be admonitory.

First, the division between, "the fight-training benefits of "alive" or resisting-partner training vs. static or kata training," is a poor construction of the topic. It a) imposes an absolute contradiction--a binary opposition, characteristic of that thinking Jacques Lacan identifies with the field of the Imaginary--upon far more complex material; b) limits martial arts to, "fight-training benefits."

There are several consequences of such intellectual constructions. a) they assure that whichever of these opposed positions you take--and there will be only two, if you accept such a construction--you will miss out; b) they elide/cover up the facts, as in according to the Blast gym's very post on this thread, ALMOST NONE OF US ARE TRAINING FOR FIGHTING, BUT FOR SELF- DEFENSE; c) they cover up the extent to which the problem is, simply, poor training of whatever philosophy; d) they encourage repetition.

One sign of the Imaginary construction appears in the constant insistences upon misrepresenting/limiting the other guy's position, armoring up one's own position, or injecting personality where there is none. In other words, if you let the question get set up this way, ALL of us--yes, specifically including myself--can do nothing more than play out the logic of that set-up.

I prefer, from the last couple quotes, the Blast gym's "pox on both your houses," approach. And I continue to suspect that, "aliveness," "NHB," "RBSD," and the rest can be--and just as often are--every bit as dead and buried as some of the "traditional," stuff I've seen. Conversely, the traditional stuff is just as alive if it's taught well and studied well.

Bruce Lee is dead. His quite-correct admonitions about the repetition of the dead are well known. Isn't it about time we drove on by the wreck?

The problem, in other words, has everything to do with commercialism, and lousy teaching, and faithless students--and commercialism and lousy training and faithlessness in each of us--and almost nothing to do with the inherent superiority of "modern," and "traditional," arts.
 

Tgace

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When did people inflicting violence become elevated to "art" anyway?
 

Flatlander

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It started with Cain and Abel.
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arnisador

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Tgace said:
When did people inflicting violence become elevated to "art" anyway?
I think it's art as opposed to science, not art in the sense of beauty. Someone recently posted a good defn. of art with this meaning in some thread.
 

loki09789

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Old Fat Kenpoka said:
Robert: I personally do not question the transformative power of the arts. My many years of "traditional" martial arts training has really helped me out, and it has really helped others out as well. There are indeed many health, spiritual, social, physical, and fight-training benefits to traditoinal martial arts training. The question of this debate is regarding the fight-training benefits of "alive" or resisting-partner training vs. static or kata training.
Directly put OFK. One of the most successful "aliveness" applications in my area ( by successful I mean, students learned what the instructor promised and he maintained a steady core of students) was in in a traditional IsshinRyu school. The difference was that the instructor used Kata as a theoretical tool as much as he did for technical/performance exercises. He would break the techniques out of Kata and have students apply them against one possible attack scenario. He would use 'traditional' approaches like Rondori from his Judo days to give students different body types different deliveries and different agressiveness levels of attackers. He stole from the Quickdraw schools and had his students start from chairs, kneeling, sitting on the floor....

What ever you could think of, he probably tried it to create 'aliveness' in his program. He was always seeing the similarities/differences between my Kenpo/FMA background and his IsshinRyu/Judo background. He recognized that, at a physical level, the goal was understanding the goals and intent of the motion as much as 'mastering' the motion. Within the commercial world of 'traditional training' he was outside the box because he actually taught students how to apply the techniques offensively and defensively regardless of what the basic application was outlined to do....

It is all martial arts to me. Just because I use the term Reality Based/Tactical/Combatives school doesn't automatically mean groups like BLAUER/MacYoung/Thornton at the exclusion of solid trad art schools that are 'training for a purpose' of self defense/reality application. They are out there.
 

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rmcrobertson said:
Garsh, like, rilly/ I thought it was a discussion loosely organized by a topic, in which responses to other posters was part of the game.

Let me explain the connections, since you've chosen to be admonitory.

First, the division between, "the fight-training benefits of "alive" or resisting-partner training vs. static or kata training," is a poor construction of the topic. It a) imposes an absolute contradiction--a binary opposition, characteristic of that thinking Jacques Lacan identifies with the field of the Imaginary--upon far more complex material; b) limits martial arts to, "fight-training benefits."

There are several consequences of such intellectual constructions. a) they assure that whichever of these opposed positions you take--and there will be only two, if you accept such a construction--you will miss out; b) they elide/cover up the facts, as in according to the Blast gym's very post on this thread, ALMOST NONE OF US ARE TRAINING FOR FIGHTING, BUT FOR SELF- DEFENSE; c) they cover up the extent to which the problem is, simply, poor training of whatever philosophy; d) they encourage repetition.

One sign of the Imaginary construction appears in the constant insistences upon misrepresenting/limiting the other guy's position, armoring up one's own position, or injecting personality where there is none. In other words, if you let the question get set up this way, ALL of us--yes, specifically including myself--can do nothing more than play out the logic of that set-up.

I prefer, from the last couple quotes, the Blast gym's "pox on both your houses," approach. And I continue to suspect that, "aliveness," "NHB," "RBSD," and the rest can be--and just as often are--every bit as dead and buried as some of the "traditional," stuff I've seen. Conversely, the traditional stuff is just as alive if it's taught well and studied well.

Bruce Lee is dead. His quite-correct admonitions about the repetition of the dead are well known. Isn't it about time we drove on by the wreck?

The problem, in other words, has everything to do with commercialism, and lousy teaching, and faithless students--and commercialism and lousy training and faithlessness in each of us--and almost nothing to do with the inherent superiority of "modern," and "traditional," arts.

Well, Robert...I've never read Lacan...and you have identified a key flaw in my either/or logic.

You have also highlighted another set of problems that limit martial effectiveness: ..."commercialism, and lousy teaching, and faithless students--and commercialism and lousy training and faithlessness in each of us"... But, the contradiction StraightBlast highlights between alive training and dead training is independent of these problems, is real, and can be found by comparing a few schools.

Additionally, I am not clear about the difference you perceive between self-defense and fighting. Don't really understand this particular quote from StraightBlast either as I'm sure I've seen other essays from StraightBlast (somewhere on the web) that equate self-defense with fighting. Every time I've had to use physical self-defense, I've had to fight--or at least be ready and willing to fight. Perhaps the difference you feel has to do with why the fight starts (one unwilling combatant makes it self-defense)?

Not sure how/why Bruce Lee and his long-ago death fits into your essay here. And I hope you don't take us down that path!
 
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rmcrobertson

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Sheesh, it's no big whoops.

1. "Alive," and "dead," training has very little to do with "modern," vs. "traditional," martial arts. It has to do with good and bad training, period--though it's easy to adopt the snootery of either "modern," or, "traditional."

2. Fighting, for some, means climbing into a ring with some big galoot. Why in the hell would I do that? Self-defense is more general: for example, if I don't climb into the ring, I don't play the other guy's game, and I don't get hurt. That's self-defense. Also included is coming to recognize that climbing into a ring, in the sense often discussed, has a lot more to do with male display than anything else. It's dueling, really, and I'm strictly a run if possible, and if not, shoot-'em-in-the-back from as far as possible kinda guy.

3. Among the good things Bruce Lee did, there were some lulus of bad ideas. For example, he may have introduced pontificating to the martial arts...a crime against humanity. But worst, he created a set of cliches--you know, the whole system of no system jazz--which have come to really, really screw people up. It's the classic mistake: sure, spotaneity and creativity are where you want to go. But they are not how you get there, and we've had this argument before.

My take on, "alive," concepts is that training should remain alive. And that some folks are freezing things around the concept of, 'aliveness," as surely as the worst, hidebound traditionalist who ever lived did.

Oh yeah--and again, as folks more or less pretty much know: for the umpteenth time, martial arts are not, repeat not, simply about fighting. Fighting, in whatever sense, is itself just another means to an end.
 

James Kovacich

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rmcrobertson said:
Sheesh, it's no big whoops.

3. Among the good things Bruce Lee did, there were some lulus of bad ideas. For example, he may have introduced pontificating to the martial arts...a crime against humanity. But worst, he created a set of cliches--you know, the whole system of no system jazz--which have come to really, really screw people up. It's the classic mistake: sure, spotaneity and creativity are where you want to go. But they are not how you get there, and we've had this argument before.

You're right about the way of no way. The problem is just what you said "It's the classic mistake: sure, spotaneity and creativity are where you want to go. But they are not how you get there"

Not anytime before but not until "after we get there" and dissolve the technique "then" it becomes the way of no way.

Also, "aliveness" should be practiced in some fashion in all systems no matter what lineage, traditional or not. I think that people get confused because "todays fighters" jump right in mixing everything up without really knowing much more than what they are mixing up. It's alive but not "complete" as they beleive. And some of the public beleives it too.

I have a student right now that is a "natural talent" and can probably knock a lot of more experienced fighters. But his knowledge base is limited. So I haven't started him yet on the "aliveness" but he is on the right path to it. Thats something that I teach to differant students at differant times depending on when they are ready for it.
 
T

Turbo

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I think it is the best thing for everyone including beginners. Yes they learn basics like jab. It is broken down in to the basic motions, with body mechanics then progressing to Sparring.....Aliveness is not just about sparring it can be drills with Timing, Motion, and Energy!!! Matt Thorton did the Jeet kune do and Martial Arts Community a huge favor by bringing this concept to light...As a JKD practioner I thought it was the best and most realistic, but then I watched thorton talk about aliveness and realized I was doing dead movements, I was critizing Kata, and was pretty much doing the same thing......Thanks to Matt thorton
 

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