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Thread: New Weapons

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    kroh's Avatar
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    Default New Weapons

    At what point do you use a new or adapted weapon or tactic in a Japanese Martial art and still call it Japanese Martial Art. Most of the Kempo systems that are in my area I wouldn't actually classify as Japanese Martial Art as they favor a classical Boxing approach rather than how a Japanese stylist actual fights. At what point do we introduce a new elements into what we are doing such as boxing tactics, kerambit training, stun gun or taser training, and still categorize it as JMA?

    Regards,
    Walt

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    Kosho Gakkusei is offline
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    Default Re: New Weapons

    I've heard Hanshi say a few times that there are 2 different kinds of Martial arts.
    1. Re-enactment.
    2. Study.

    If your perspective of MA is #1 then you can not introduce anything new because that takes away from the "purity" of the art and is not "the way it was done."
    If your perspective is #2 then you are always seeking to learn and grow and continuously seeking new adaptations and developments to your art. Introducing new technology and learning how to apply it to the governing principles of your art. Additionally, you study other art forms to learn from them too. You will seek to discover ways you can incorporate that art into your own, as well as how to defend against a practicioner of that art and how to exploit the weaknesses as well.

    A quick overview of the history of Kosho put forward by Mitose and Juchnik from this perspective: Kosho was started by a member of the Komatsu clan who had been practicing a family system of warfare seeking to adapt the art to his new Buddhist mindset of peace. At some point a Chinese monk fleeing Mongol invasion introduced Chuan Fa methods and the art was further adapted. According to Mitose, Kosho monks would study all martial arts systems to learn from them. When Mitose came to America her further adapted the art. After the art was passed to Juchnik he adapted it as well and still continues to adapt to this day.

    In my opinion, #1 is a memorial to art that has died while #2 is an art that continues to live. I beleive Kempo is to be a #2.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kosho Gakkusei View Post
    The Kanji for Kempo is taken from some interesting radicals:

    Ken - translates to Fist is made from the radicals for hand and scroll.
    Ho - translates to Law is made from the radicals for water, earth, and to flow.

    From this we can understand that not only does Kempo mean Fist Law or Fist Method on the surface level but a more indepth look shows that Kempo is the study (scroll in hand) of natural law (the flow of water on the earth).
    A deeper more philisophical question: Is any art truly Japanese, or American, or Chinese for that matter? Isn't art just an expression or discovery of what was already created? Then, shouldn't all art truly belong to God or nature?

    If we strive to classify a living art with a culture are we not just identifying its prejudice, creating limitations, and ultimately killing it?

    These are my thoughts.

    _Don Flatt

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    Default Re: New Weapons

    excellent post

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    Default Re: New Weapons

    I've heard Hanshi say a few times that there are 2 different kinds of Martial arts.
    1. Re-enactment.
    2. Study.

    If your perspective of MA is #1 then you can not introduce anything new because that takes away from the "purity" of the art and is not "the way it was done."
    If your perspective is #2 then you are always seeking to learn and grow and continuously seeking new adaptations and developments to your art. Introducing new technology and learning how to apply it to the governing principles of your art. Additionally, you study other art forms to learn from them too. You will seek to discover ways you can incorporate that art into your own, as well as how to defend against a practicioner of that art and how to exploit the weaknesses as well.

    There is something called Shu, Ha, Ri....

    Also, in the classical Japanese arts, the power (or understanding for that matter) to make modifications within a ryu typically belong to the headmaster alone. And any modification must not alter or conflict with the principles that define the ryu. If they do, then you no longer have the original ryu; you have something else.

    A deeper more philisophical question: Is any art truly Japanese, or American, or Chinese for that matter? Isn't art just an expression or discovery of what was already created? Then, shouldn't all art truly belong to God or nature?

    If we strive to classify a living art with a culture are we not just identifying its prejudice, creating limitations, and ultimately killing it?
    Why is there a problem with identifying something such as a "living art with a culture" with the very nation or culture from which it comes? There are most certaily things in Japanese arts that make them...well, Japanese (despite many apsects of their culture having come from China). This is particulary true when we speak arts that were developed by a specific class within a specific culture and society within a specific time-frame.

    As a further example,the Sun Dance, practised by native tribes of the North American prairies, was created by and belongs to them. It is not Chinese, African or Norse. It was practised by Lakota, Blackfoot, Cheyenne and others. It is a cultural heritage unique to and limited to them (sure, we might say that as they are Native Americans, the Sun Dance is therefore part of the overall American Heritage ]but it not really part of what people think of when they think of when they think of American culture; that unfortunately has, in many cases, been reduced to mere trivialities, such as Coca Cola and People Magazine]. But this is really a form of assimilation [which by the way, did not work well at all for natives in this country]; it does pay proper respect to or acknowledge the cultural and societal realities of the Sun Dance). There are most certainly limitations to its development by and use within specific cultures. Are we assigning prejudice be realising that? Does this ultimately "kill" the Sun Dance an dany value that it may or may have had for the peoples that practised it?

    On a much more mundane level, is calling an orange an "orange" creating limitations and killing it? Or, in order to eliminate "prejudice", do we say that it it is the same as a grapefruit, because it is also round and is also a citrus fruit? Which is more important with respect to the orange? The similarities to the grapefruit, or the properties which define it as an orange? I know which is more important to me; I like orange juice very much; I do not like (a prejudice) grapefruit juice much at all.

    You cannot have non-limitation without limitation. And not all limitation is bad. It is in fact, quite necessary.
    Last edited by E. Johnstone; 02-16-2007 at 10:32 AM.
    Respects,

    Erik A. Johnstone
    Shindokan Budo
    Jikishin-Kai International

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    Default Re: New Weapons

    ...rather than how a Japanese stylist actual fights.
    And how would that be? There are numerous Japanese arts (gendai and koryu) and differ widely from each other...

    While there may be similarities, differences define the style. Not a bad thing at all.
    Respects,

    Erik A. Johnstone
    Shindokan Budo
    Jikishin-Kai International

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    Cool Re: New Weapons

    rather than how a Japanese stylist actual fights.
    Hey there Kroh; I should have indicated that my last post wasn't really directed at you...
    Respects,

    Erik A. Johnstone
    Shindokan Budo
    Jikishin-Kai International

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