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Thread: kenpo/kemp...what does it mean?

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    Default kenpo/kemp...what does it mean?

    I know that KeNpo translated from the Chinese means "Fist Law" or "Law of the Fist."

    What does KeMpo mean? I could be wrong, but I believe this type has more of a Japanese influence. Does it translate the same? I'm just curious and couldn't find any former threads on it.
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    Default Re: kenpo/kemp...what does it mean?

    It was right under your nose the whole time. LOL. Its ok I know how it feels.

    Japanese Kempo entry on MT Encyclopedia
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    Default Re: kenpo/kemp...what does it mean?

    DOH! Thanks!
    "It is sobering to reflect that one of the best ways to get yourself a reputation as a dangerous citizen these days is to go about repeating the very phrases which our founding fathers used in the struggle for independence." Charles A. Beard

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    Default Re: kenpo/kemp...what does it mean?

    i think i read it on Speakman's site of his trip to China.. but he found that the Law of the Fist wasnt just a term for the school of hard knocks.. it meant literally the fist was the protector of the law.. the Scholar and the Warrior.. yin and yang, woot woot.

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    Default Re: kenpo/kemp...what does it mean?

    Ken/mpo is, quite simply, a phonetic representation of a japanese word in our language.
    It has nothing to do with china or the chinese language.

    The chinese words are, while similar in meaning, completely different.

    this whole kenpo(chinese)/kempo(japanese) thing is due to a lack of knowledge of the language, and anyone that tells you different hasn't done their homework.

    It just so happened that japan adopted china's system of writing and has since developed 2 different methods, using parts of chinese characters to represent phonetics in japanese.

    that wiki article needs some serious editing.

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    Default Re: kenpo/kemp...what does it mean?

    I thought it Kempo meant never having to say you're sorry...

    But hey I come from a Hawaiian system that uses Japanese terminology (backwards even like Sensei Jamey, instead of Gibson Sensei) and has the word "Chinese" in the name.

    I sure love the system though!

    Cheers everyone-
    The above is just my opinion.

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    Default Re: kenpo/kemp...what does it mean?

    Kenpo originated in China, but over the years has taken on a Japanese, Okinawan, Hawaiian, and American mix. As spelled today, Kenpo with an "N" denotes its original Chinese heritage, while Kempo with an "M" refers to its use in Japanese culture. The word "Kenpo" means fist law or law of the fist, regardless of its spelling "Kenpo" or "Kempo". The word comes from the mandarin Chinese term "Chaun Fa" or what the Cantonese refer to as "Ken Fat". When the art was brought to Okinawa the native tongue of Hogun was used to translate the Chinese characters and the individual kanji into Kenpo. When the Japanese pronounce this term, using the later Japanese syntax, they pronounce it Kempo. In fact, Kempo is a generic reference to Chinese martial arts in Japan.
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    Default Re: kenpo/kemp...what does it mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by Seabrook View Post
    Kenpo originated in China, but over the years has taken on a Japanese, Okinawan, Hawaiian, and American mix. As spelled today, Kenpo with an "N" denotes its original Chinese heritage, while Kempo with an "M" refers to its use in Japanese culture. The word "Kenpo" means fist law or law of the fist, regardless of its spelling "Kenpo" or "Kempo". The word comes from the mandarin Chinese term "Chaun Fa" or what the Cantonese refer to as "Ken Fat". When the art was brought to Okinawa the native tongue of Hogun was used to translate the Chinese characters and the individual kanji into Kenpo. When the Japanese pronounce this term, using the later Japanese syntax, they pronounce it Kempo. In fact, Kempo is a generic reference to Chinese martial arts in Japan.
    That's what I was after. Thanks!
    "It is sobering to reflect that one of the best ways to get yourself a reputation as a dangerous citizen these days is to go about repeating the very phrases which our founding fathers used in the struggle for independence." Charles A. Beard

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    Default Re: kenpo/kemp...what does it mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by Seabrook View Post
    Kenpo originated in China, but over the years has taken on a Japanese, Okinawan, Hawaiian, and American mix. As spelled today, Kenpo with an "N" denotes its original Chinese heritage, while Kempo with an "M" refers to its use in Japanese culture. The word "Kenpo" means fist law or law of the fist, regardless of its spelling "Kenpo" or "Kempo". The word comes from the mandarin Chinese term "Chaun Fa" or what the Cantonese refer to as "Ken Fat". When the art was brought to Okinawa the native tongue of Hogun was used to translate the Chinese characters and the individual kanji into Kenpo. When the Japanese pronounce this term, using the later Japanese syntax, they pronounce it Kempo. In fact, Kempo is a generic reference to Chinese martial arts in Japan.
    I've read this explanation as well. I also was told that the Kanji translation can be an interpretation mixup. That the Chinese character uses the N while the Japanese use the M.
    "Fear is the true opiate of combat."

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    Default Re: kenpo/kemp...what does it mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by ronin6 View Post
    I've read this explanation as well. I also was told that the Kanji translation can be an interpretation mixup. That the Chinese character uses the N while the Japanese use the M.

    Or did I mix that up??? Maybe the Chinese use the M and the Japanese use the N...
    "Fear is the true opiate of combat."

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    Default Re: kenpo/kemp...what does it mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by Seabrook View Post
    As spelled today, Kenpo with an "N" denotes its original Chinese heritage, while Kempo with an "M" refers to its use in Japanese culture.
    That has nothing to do with the Japanese word. The seperation has more to do with common usage or lineage. However, Chow's Kempo is spelled with an "m" and I hear it has a chinese flavor. I've also seen the "n" spelling used for a very japanese system outside of the mitose influence, mostly overseas.

    Anyways, different spelling veriations is not unique to the word Kenpo/Kempo.

    Kung Fu - Gung Fu
    Jujutsu - Jujitsu - Jiu-Jitsu
    Wing Chun - Ving Tsun
    Chi Gung - Qi Gong
    Chuan Fa - Quan Fa - that is also the chinese word for kenpo/kempo
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    Default Re: kenpo/kemp...what does it mean?

    Z-Rex: Yes, Professor Chow's Kara-Ho KeMpo has a Chinese flavor. In fact, the further one goes down the Kara-Ho "rabbit hole" the more Chinese flavor it seems to have.

    James
    The above is just my opinion.

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    Default Re: kenpo/kemp...what does it mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dianhsuhe View Post
    Z-Rex: Yes, Professor Chow's Kara-Ho KeMpo has a Chinese flavor. In fact, the further one goes down the Kara-Ho "rabbit hole" the more Chinese flavor it seems to have.

    James
    I would imagine. After all, the man was Chinese. Regardless of if one believes where he received his chinese martial arts training, being of Chinese heritage would have exposed him to some form of Wushu at some point in his life. After all, most Chinese were very secretive and only trained other chinese in their martial arts back then.

    Anyways, I think I went beyond the scope of this thread.
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    Default Re: kenpo/kemp...what does it mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by Z-Rex View Post
    That has nothing to do with the Japanese word.
    That really depends who you talk to.
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    Default Re: kenpo/kemp...what does it mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by Seabrook View Post
    That really depends who you talk to.
    like i said in my post, the word kempo has nothing to do with china.....no matter how you spell it or who you talk to.
    its this kind of ignorance that keeps perpetuating this myth.
    ken/mpo is a phonetic representation in english of a japanese word.
    anything else attached to its meaning has been done so mistakenly.

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    Default Re: kenpo/kemp...what does it mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by Blackcatbonz View Post
    like i said in my post, the word kempo has nothing to do with china.....no matter how you spell it or who you talk to.
    its this kind of ignorance that keeps perpetuating this myth.
    ken/mpo is a phonetic representation in english of a japanese word.
    anything else attached to its meaning has been done so mistakenly.
    Actually, looking at the kanji for Kempo/Kenpo (japanese) and Quanfa/Chuan Fa (chinese), they appear to be identical. It also appears that many systems in Japan that has the word Kenpo/Kempo attached to it has origins in China at one point in its history. Such as Shorinji Kempo (which means Shaolin Quanfa) and RyuKyu Kempo.

    I do agree that the english spelling is not relative to the japanese word. Its only relevance is to the lineage of the particular system. Although Kempo/Kenpo is a japanese word, it is now an english word. Which means that the definition will be subject to common use or in some cases mis-use. Just as Kung Fu does not mean martial arts in China (Wushu means MA there), but here in the west it means Chinese Martial Arts.
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    Default Re: kenpo/kemp...what does it mean?

    Kanji was borrowed by Japan from China and is purely symbolic and not phonetical in nature. The Kanji and meaning are all the same for: Kenpo, Kempo, Chuan Fa, Quan fa, and Ken Fat.

    _Don Flatt

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    Default Re: kenpo/kemp...what does it mean?

    Actually, I was only interested in if there were different "definitions" based on the spelling. I didn't mean to start a war over it!
    "It is sobering to reflect that one of the best ways to get yourself a reputation as a dangerous citizen these days is to go about repeating the very phrases which our founding fathers used in the struggle for independence." Charles A. Beard

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    Default Re: kenpo/kemp...what does it mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by Celtic_Crippler View Post
    Actually, I was only interested in if there were different "definitions" based on the spelling. I didn't mean to start a war over it!
    It's not a war but a discussion that can give us an opportunity to learn.

    But the answer to you question is;

    No. There is no difference in definition as far as spelling is concerned.
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    Default Re: kenpo/kemp...what does it mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by Z-Rex View Post
    Actually, looking at the kanji for Kempo/Kenpo (japanese) and Quanfa/Chuan Fa (chinese), they appear to be identical. It also appears that many systems in Japan that has the word Kenpo/Kempo attached to it has origins in China at one point in its history. Such as Shorinji Kempo (which means Shaolin Quanfa) and RyuKyu Kempo.

    I do agree that the english spelling is not relative to the japanese word. Its only relevance is to the lineage of the particular system. Although Kempo/Kenpo is a japanese word, it is now an english word. Which means that the definition will be subject to common use or in some cases mis-use. Just as Kung Fu does not mean martial arts in China (Wushu means MA there), but here in the west it means Chinese Martial Arts.
    Zoran, i agree with everything in your post with the exception of the highlighted comment.
    I am quite familiar with the word's usage, but it is still a japanese word that tends to be used incorrectly.

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