Scarcity and Abundance in Martial Arts Instruction

A martial arts school is defined primarily by the skills and the personality of its teachers. While technical ability is important, and universally known to be so, the importance of a teacher’s personality and attitude is often underestimated.

 Judo class

Teachers invest far more time and effort sharpening their martial skills, than in improving their attitude. It is attitude that determines how much they are willing to teach, and what they expect from students in return. Continue reading Scarcity and Abundance in Martial Arts Instruction

Tilopa on Tai Chi Practice

Tilopa grinding sesame seeds

Looking beyond duality is the king-like view;
defeating all distractions is the king-like practice;
the practice of non-practice is the deed of the Buddhas.

Mahasiddha Tilopa

How is this related to your Tai Chi practice?  It depends.
Are you trying hard to become more internal, with the help of some dusty old books?

The Best of Kung Fu Cinema: Fight Choreography

I was recently reading wujimon’s Taijiquan blog, and was a little surprised to find Top 5 Martial Arts Movies in his list of most popular posts.

Surely, I thought, such lowbrow pursuits are beneath the true “internal martial artist”? But it seems I was wrong; a fortuitous circumstance, because I know more about kung fu movies than John Hodgman knows about hoboes. Continue reading The Best of Kung Fu Cinema: Fight Choreography

Investigating the Dim Mak Death Touch

The old Kung Fu master touched his assailant, with no apparent effect.  Days later, the assailant died a sudden and mysterious death.  He was a victim of the legendary dim mak, the touch of death.

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Dim mak is a popular discussion topic among martial arts enthusiasts.  Some instructors claim to have the skill, or believe that it was used to kill Bruce Lee.  Others insist that dim mak instructors are frauds and the skill itself is a complete fantasy.  Is there any evidence to support the existence of dim mak?  Could it possibly work? Continue reading Investigating the Dim Mak Death Touch

Kung Fu Version 2.0

Version History

Kung Fu version 1.0 was released at the dawn of human history, and it was truly a killer app.  Though it contained only two basic features—kill people and kill animals—it was useful in solving the problems of the prehistoric age. 

Kung Fu 1.0 provided end-users with critical advantages in the constant struggle for food, and an opportunity to reproduce.  By leveraging bleeding-edge innovations in Rock and Stick technology, early adopters were able to live to the ripe old age of 30 years, and perhaps even become grandparents. Continue reading Kung Fu Version 2.0

Qigong Demonstration by Master Zhou Ting-Jue

This video clip from Ripley’s Believe It or Not showcases the qigong skills of master Zhou Ting-Jue.

In the first portion of the video, Zhou raises the temperature of a damp paper towel (containing a sheet of foil) above 200 degrees Fahrenheit. Steam rises from the towel. Continue reading Qigong Demonstration by Master Zhou Ting-Jue

‘World of Martial Arts’ Demonstration in Seattle

Watch martial arts experts and masters perform their precision techniques and forms. Various martial arts styles from China, Japan, Okinawa, and Korea will be presented!

Seattle I.D./Chinatown Community Center
Saturday, October 14, 2006
6pm to 8pm
Admission: $10/person

If you decide to attend, please post a review afterwards.

The Costs of Fighting with Anger

While reading another martial arts blog, I encountered this advice on the use of anger:

You have to be aggressive and attack your opponent, attacking them will make them block more and hence stop their attacks… So how do you become aggressive, if it’s just not in your nature? It’s all about how you process the situation, psychologically. Start thinking “I’m not going to let them do this to me. Fcuk them!”. You have to get mad.

I believe that, if you practice martial arts for personal development, rushing to rage is a counterproductive strategy.  And truthfully, anger isn’t all that useful for fighting either. Continue reading The Costs of Fighting with Anger

Disgruntled Ninja Silently Kills 12 Co-Workers

SKOKIE, IL—Toshiro Tenchumaru, a 34-year-old ninja and longtime employee at Azuma Copier Corporation in Skokie, stealthily took the lives of 12 co-workers Monday after suffering what investigators theorize was “a breakdown due to job-related stress.”

The disgruntled ninja was later captured by police while attempting to flee on foot across telephone lines. Continue reading Disgruntled Ninja Silently Kills 12 Co-Workers