Relaxing is the only way to find the True Martial Arts
I remember reading of Koichi Tohei,
many years ago,
and some scientists asked if they could test his ki.
Like, on machines.
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Now this isn’t a smart idea.
Ki is an energy motivated by thought,
sometimes the energy can be registered,
but the thought never can,
so science often proves there is no such thing as ki.
Can’t be measured…doesn’t exist.
Which is the same reasoning
that kept the world flat for so many centuries.
They just don’t what to measure,
and there isn’t a machine in existence
that can measure thought.
the test went round and round,
they couldn’t explain what Koichi was doing,
and they couldn’t figure out the readings they were getting,
probably with a diabolical sense of humor,
told them he could slow his heart down.
They said nonsense,
a human being couldn’t control the nervous system in that way.
So he did it.
He dropped it some 30 beats,
then sped it up again,
then slowed it down.
And the scientists were really confused.
So let’s talk about what you are supposed to do
with your mind in the martial arts.
It’s just a bunch of memories.
Get rid of the past,
at least ignore it,
and you are more in the present,
and then you can better control your body.
But too simple.
People have a hard time buying into this simplicity.
we trained so that the mind
didn’t become excited,
and so that we kept looking,
and ignored emotion.
Ignored the emotion of fighting.
Didn’t feel the anxiety,
or sudden beating of the heart
as the world devolved to chaos.
Note that I am moving at the same time.
When somebody throws a punch at me
I actually slow down.
My mind looks right past any memories,
and I focus on the moment.
I stop reacting,
even to my own training,
and start moving with the person.
In real time.
there are MANY examples of this in the world.
The baseball player,
the guy way out in the field,
takes off…AT THE CRACK OF THE BAT!
Not before it,
not after it,
but at the same time.
he moves intuitively to where the ball is going.
He attempts to ‘meet’ the ball,
at some specified time and place.
But how did he know where the ball was going…
at THE CRACK OF THE BAT!
There are other examples,
but this is my favorite,
probably because everybody knows what I am talking about.
Especially if they have played baseball.
If you have ever had a sixth sense,
known when something was going to happen before it happened,
felt somebody walk behind you (hairs on end),
that is you,
putting aside memories,
and perceiving directly.
it happened about the time I got to Black Belt.
When I got there I began to focus,
without excitement or distraction,
on what was happening.
And it really screwed people up,
when I displayed no reaction time.
Reaction comes from ‘react’
which means you are so immersed in memories (or training)
that you can’t perceive directly.
Signals have to travel through the body to create motion,
instead of you,
apart from your body,
just creating motion.
I’ve talked long enough,
probably left as much confusion as enlightenment.
But here’s the trick…
You have to train with people
in a system which understands this.
In which the techniques support this,
the forms are aligned and orderly.
The freestyle is not a fight,
but a procedure of learning how to look.
Not getting excited,
not getting distracted by emotions,
but calming yourself
so that you don’t get excited.
I’ve done the best I could
to give you a good system.
Here are the systems…
But you have to work,
and work hard.
You have to get the idea that I’m talking about in your mind.
You have to force yourself to calm,
to put aside excitement,
and become cool and machinelike in your actions.
Good luck with this,
in spite of all the simplicity of my systems,
it is still hard.
It’s hard to restrain emotion,
put aside memories,
memories that you sometimes don’t even recognize as existing,
and function on a high level.
But it is possible.
Good work out to you.
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Newsletter 815 ~ Sign up now on the Free Books page!
New Karate Black Belt
Good morning! Wonderful morning. I just did a whole bunch of forms, I feel like a million.
The most important Martial Arts book ever written.
Hey, there’s lots of stuff happening, so let me start with… CONGRATS! to Peter Carmody
Peter passed his Matrix Karate Black Belt test.
The test was done on video, and Peter went through having to repeat the test, doing all the corrections, and making all the matrix karate material work.
And he made it look good!
Video testing is interesting. You could probably film yourself on an iPhone, don’t wear black against a black wall, white against white, and so on.
Have some sunlight, or a few bulbs glowing.
You don’t need lots of space as long as I can see your whole body.
Have a partner.
Be willing to fail once or twice, at least.
And here’s the thing, Matrix Karate is pretty darn unique. You see, most karate systems were developed for specific reasons, bodyguarding, the element of being grabbed, having to deal with weapons, etc.
Not saying you won’t encounter these things today, you need some awareness of these things, but the real factor is that we are a fist culture. If you are in a fight the usual weapons will be fists. Then something that can be used as a cub, then a knife, etc.
But fists are the base of it all. And, if you can handle a fist, it is just a short step to a knife, if you have enough brains to adapt.
Anyway, Matrix Karate is designed around the structure of the body, it is a complete art, taking into account all angles of attack and defense. But it is SIMPLE! Because the posing and the unnecessary techniques have all been weeded out.
You have to learn about mistakes, but the essence is in the logic where one move leads to the next, with no circus moves.
It’s funny, I remember one of the first wins I ever received, this was about ten years ago. The guy wrote that he had gone to a martial arts school, and the first technique they taught him was a cartwheel into a jump kick. Not how to block and punch. Not even the basic kicks, but a jumping kick off a whole body contortion.
Can you see why matrixing was so desperately needed? A little common sense? And every system, no matter how classical or developed, benefits from the direct infusion of logic that matrixing provides.
Anyway, well done to Peter, and I recommend Matrix Karate and the Master Instructor Course (you need both of them to test). Whether you are accomplished and have a black belt, whether you are a raw beginner, whether you are just in the middle and need to get going, Matrix Karate is the easiest, the best, the most efficient and completely rounded karate on the planet. Period.
Man! Aren’t summer work outs the best? You cleanse yourself through the purity of plain, old-fashioned sweat. Glorious!
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Okay, let’s talk about how Karate was messed up. I’ve talked about how Karate was mangled by people with vested interests, power hungry students, nationalism, religion, just about every thing under the sun. So let’s talk about one specific way Karate, and this is going to touch upon just every art there is, was truly messed up.
When Karate was developed people wore armor. They carried swords. And to use your fists, to get your fists dirty on the body of an enemy was downright disgusting. Think about it, this is simple: karate was developed to handle samurai, with their swords and armor. Karate was empty hand.
So, do you crack armor with an empty hand? Maybe, but while you’re doing that, the fellow is using his sword.
Do you block that sword with an arm? Nope.
Do you get the point? Now, here is where it truly gets messed. When the American servicemen were taught karate they were taught a random variety of throws, of defenses for weapons, of specific techniques for specific attacks.
And not many of those attacks were real for this modern age!
So some instructor taught a student how to disarm a sword. But when you look at the technique, there is no sword, and the fellow the karateka is defending against is punching the crud out of him.
Here’s the funny thing, Karate rose to the occasion. All the arts rose to the occasion. They managed to make fast punches and kicks, and adapt to striking.
Even though striking was a small part of the whole art.
So Karate, and other arts, became skewed to meet the demands of a punch crazy society.
okay, summation: Karate was designed for complete combat, but then shrunken and warped to fit the precise punches of a different culture and time.
And that’s why Karate, and many other arts, just don’t work.
It’s like using metric wrenches on a 1950 Chevrolet.
So, Karate, and other martial arts, are broken. Mismatched. Outgrown. And here comes the funny part: what was the solution provided in America and in other parts of the world?
The solution was to teach boxing and call it Karate. Go on, visit a few schools.
You will find people doing boxing, or kick boxing, or some other thing, and calling it Karate.
I went to a school the other day, the instructor had the children hold their hands in boxing position. They were taught to bob and weave. It was not Karate. There were no stances, no blocks, a few kicks, including fancy ones that looked so cool, but would get a person killed on the street.
But it said ‘Karate’ on the front window! Big letters, too.
And there are other solutions, some pretty bizarre, some effective, but all deviating from what karate really is. And, deviating from kung fu, or other types of arts.
What was my solution? My solution was demanded by the fact that I could not box and call it Karate. I couldn’t leave behind the energy, the subtle throws, the powerful way of developing the mind and body, not to mention the spirit.
So what I did was rearrange everything, made it 1, 2, 3 logical, so that one step led to the next. So that one didn’t learn a punch, then a fancy hold, and let’s throw in a cartwheel kick here, cause people would really dig it!
I arranged the blocks so they made as much sense as 1, 2, 3… and everything is adapted for striking.
But I didn’t throw out the locks and throws. Instead, I teach the strikes, classical strikes using energy, and you end up in a specific position, and then I show how each position ends up in a lock or throw, if you just continue the motion…logically.
Everybody else is teaching the classical forms, trying to adapt them to strikes, when they were not meant to be adapted to strikes. Strikes were only a small part.
When you do Matrix Karate you learn everything logically, and that includes the throws which have been put at the end of the strike.
Think: in a fight distance closes. The kicks and punches are done, the bodies come together, and that is where the throw should be, when the distance collapses.
I don’t teach how to fight from six feet away with a lock or throw. I teach how to logically close the distance, using the punches and kicks logically, and then do whatever throw you are in position to do.
And this is an important point: after a strike or block, you will find yourself in a specific position, and there are only a couple of locks or throws possible. That is true for every position. So you don’t search through your mental database, ransack your memory, looking for a throw, or trying to figure out how to throw from an awkward and not appropriate position. Instead, you move forward logically, and the result is a flow.
Maybe you’ve read some wins people have sent me from doing some of my forms. People talk about there being a specific flow to the forms and techniques. This is the result of logic.
Anyway, I could talk forever, but it’s all written down, all video’d, in Matrix Karate. And if you don’t see the throw, you can find all the throws, logically, so they fit into specific positions of any art, in Matrix Kung Fu (Monkey boxing.
So, ‘nuff said. You guys have a great summer work out, three months working hard in the heat, sweating your b***s off.
May you have the best work out of your life. Really.
First Volume of Matrix Karate ~ Kindle version
Speaking of blocks… When I was in my teens I was studying Kenpo. I learned all these neat tricks, was excited about fighting, and I kept having these weird ideas about strategy and how the martial arts were shaped. Oddly, I couldn’t make these strategies work. I could fight well, but these things I was thinking about, they just eluded me in combat. And it was because there wasn’t much in the way of blocking, in Kenpo.
In my twenties I joined the Kang Duk Won, I bashed my arms for years, and I learned about pain. I learned that pain is a warning device. And it was all because of blocks.
Funny. Most people won’t use a real block in freestyle. I can, and do if I am teaching somebody and there is a lesson in it. But it’s easier to just hit the other fellow than it is to block.
But I never would have learned how to slide in and hit somebody if I hadn’t learned how to block.
I always remember the specific technique where it all came home. It was the technique from the first move of Batsai. Batsai is spelled a few different ways, but it means ‘defending a fortress.’
In that technique I had to do three blocks. And I had to do these three blocks with hips twists, I had to twist the hips to align the body so it could support the impact without collapsing. And I had to do it faster than somebody could throw three punches at me.
For months I tried to get that technique. I would practice it and practice it, get guys to give me that attack, but I just couldn’t move my body fast enough.
One day, I did. Just like that. One second I couldn’t, and the next second I could. Like a switch had been thrown. But here’s the interesting thing: I felt like I was behind my head. I felt like I was out of my body, just a little bit, and watching my body move without me.
Well, it was moving because I had mastered the thought pattern behind the blocks. I had practiced that mental circuit until it broke, and what was left was me.
From there I moved into other things, hitting without blocks because, darn it, I had gotten so good at them I didn’t need them. And I moved into concepts of how to move the energy in my body just by thinking about it. Which is understandable if you realize that learning how to block had taught me how to influence my body with just thought.
I began to be able to accomplish all those odd ideas I had had way back in Kenpo. Which led to Matrixing.
Nowadays people don’t practice the blocks. And if they do, they don’t practice them with the proper hip movement, the proper alignment, the proper breathing and thought.
I know this because when people come to me for lessons, they show a complete lack of understanding, no knowledge of the drills, of how blocking works.
The thing is there is a whole realm of thought that goes with learning how to block. You learn all sorts of things, and it builds a springboard for moving into other concepts.
Think about it, you can box, and learn how to take a punch, but that doesn’t teach you how to run energy through your body.
Nothing wrong with boxing, it’s actually pretty good stuff, fills in a few gaps that are in the martial arts, but it just doesn’t have the energy theory that goes along with the martial arts.
Anyway, I’m working on the Matrix Karate for a Kindle version. Kindle is very unfriendly to photos, so I have to take some out, and rewrite the thing. It’s be good, but not as good as a book, or a video. Heck, even the other electronic readers are better, because they take PDFs easily.
But one of the things I focus on to make up for that lack, is the specific blocking in the forms. Not the matrix of blocking, which provides a logic which blasts one to intuition, but the old way, learning the blocks, making them work, until the art does you, and you become the art.
You guys are lucky. You understand something the Kindle readers may never understand. You get everything on these courses. On the other hand, the kindle readers may understand something you don’t because they will be seeing the art in a more bare bones viewpoint, that will let their mind fill in the blanks, which is very healthy for a student. Well, who’s to say. The real lesson is in the work out. Getting the material and doing it, thousands and thousands and thousands of times, until it becomes you, and you become it. That will teach you the art, no matter which of my books or courses you get.
And that means it is an absolutely gorgeous day for a work out.
So get going!
Was teaching this morning.
We were doing Promised Fights,
and my partner was grimacing,
and finally backed off.
“Ow,” he said.
And we got into a long discussion.
he was hurting,
I had to let him recover,
give him some data,
and then hurt him some more.
I started out with the old
‘Do it a form a thousand times and you know it.
Do it ten thousand times and you’ve mastered it.’
My student did exactly the right thing,
‘So if I do it 20 times a day,
then in fifty days…’
“Yep,” I said.
“You could know it.
You could be expert in 2 months.
But you have to do it right.
You have to understand the alignment,
how the feet work and why,
and you have to know the Promised Fights…
otherwise you could do it forever and not know it.”
we went into proper body alignment,
which is covered on the Master Instructor Course,
and how the feet must align properly,
and how the particular form we were doing had to be done
to make this all work.
I ended up saying,
“align your body,
make it a single unit,
then he won’t hit your body parts,
he will hit a single, integrated unit,
and it won’t hurt you.
Energy flows through a body that is a single unit,
it doesn’t flow through body parts used in individual fashion.
This is especially important in a Promised Fight.”
came the look I had been waiting for.
I had been using the term Promised Fight,
and I knew he would eventually ask about it.
“What is a Promised Fight?”
A Promised Fight,
or a Promise Fight,
is a piece of the form applied.
A form Application.
It is a self defense movement.
It is bunkai.
It is the working part of the form.
it is more.
if a person doesn’t understand what I am about to tell you,
he/she is not doing karate.
They are just fighting themselves.
I asked my instructor what a Promised Fight was,
and he said,
‘The Promise of a Fight.’
while the study of PFs gave great abilities,
and the answer he gave me was correct,
it was terribly incomplete.
To understand what a Promised Fight is
I need you to look up the word ‘Postulate.’
Look it up for yourself,
get all the nuances,
where it came from,
and all that,
but for this newsletter,
the short and inadequate version is this:
suggest or assume the existence, fact, or truth of (something) as a basis for reasoning, discussion, or belief
put forth the truth,
as a basis for belief.
If you understand the hint here,
you should be diving for a big old Oxford Dictionary,
wanting to know why a simple karate move
becomes the basis for truth in this universe.
So let me break it down a bit,
from the viewpoint of 50 years of training.
A postulate is a thought,
which if worked on,
as continually done in a work out.
As in a piece of the form,
practiced again and again and again.
let me back up a bit,
a form is a circuit,
a pattern of moves that you practice and practice
until you just do it without thinking about it.
You strengthen the body,
you remember the applications,
you get light and quick,
and all those sorts of things.
When you do a piece of the form,
over and over and over,
you condense the circuit,
and you get rid of thought,
and suddenly there is nothing but the move.
and you don’t exist,
you just track the incoming,
and the Promise Fight,
the postulate of moves,
pops out of you.
And it works.
You punch him,
and he falls down.
And he doesn’t understand what hit him.
But here is the truth of it all…
a thought hit him.
A Postulate of thought hit him.
A Promise Fight,
clean and simple,
without distractive thoughts,
And there is nothing purer in this universe.
I am always so busy trying to get people to understand,
offering all sorts of methods,
that i sometimes forget to go into this factor.
in Matrix Karate there is the Matrix of blocks.
These are like mini-Promise Fights.
Very important to get these,
to understand them,
it is important to learn the small PFs
before you get to the big ones.
The big ones are on Temple Karate.
There isn’t talk of a matrix there,
because it is assumed you have done the groundwork of Matrixing first.
And the form applications are VERY pure Promised Fights.
They REALLY result in a zen frame of mind,
and the ability to hit somebody with a thought.
If you get Temple Karate
and you haven’t done Matrix Karate,
then you are taking the long route.
It will take you years,
and as distractions mount,
you can be knocked off the path
and never get there.
So you should do Matrix Karate,
work on the Matrix of Blocks,
make inroads and discover what a PF is.
you can always take the pieces of the form,
they are pretty obvious,
and work on them to make real Promised Fights.
Then you do Temple Karate,
get into the classical forms,
and really go to town on the Promised Fights.
Matrix Karate is pretty simple,
it presents the movements that are pure karate,
no distractions from other arts.
It aligns you,
and sets you up for the broader moves of Temple Karate.
It is a real Closed Combat System.
You can do it by itself,
or you can do it,
then move into the classical,
and see what kinds of things
the old guys who came before us were into.
Temple Karate is a larger assortment of tricks,
it broadens the education,
and digs you to new depths.
that is the story on Promised Fights.
Dig ‘em…they are the real zen of Martial Arts.
Here’s the link for Temple,
if you have already done Matrix Karate.
You can just go to MonsterMartialArts and find Matrix Karate,
it is one of the first arts presented on the home page.
What is Actually Happening With Matrixing and the Martial Arts
The sun is shining,
and then it is raining,
and shining and raining,
and so on.
that makes it THE day for working out!
To injure an opponent is to injure yourself. To control aggression without inflicting injury is the Art of Peace.
I just received several emails.
Some fellow was bashing me on his blog.
He was a long time martial artist,
then proceeded to ‘dissect’ me.
if anybody spoke up for me,
he bashed them.
I thought this made for a wonderful opportunity
to explain about bad people in the martial arts,
what really makes them,
what you do about them,
and…what is really happening with matrixing.
So here we go.
Here is a scenario.
You are in the seventh grade,
and you are charged with teaching a fourth grader,
you have to teach him how to multiply.
You lay out the problems,
you show him,
and show and show him,
and he just doesn’t get it.
You get mad.
Teacher comes up,
she doesn’t get mad,
she just sort of straightens everything out.
here is what happened:
you had never taught anybody.
You didn’t know all the tricks.
The teacher has seen it all,
she knows all the tricks.
the people who attack me,
who attack matrixing,
they are like seventh graders.
They have done some martial arts,
but they don’t know all the tricks.
in this specific,
they don’t understand
how all the arts fit together.
They don’t understand the underlying principles,
the real philosophy behind it all.
they get mad.
think about it,
they have spent their lives doing martial arts,
and here I come along and say:
oh, that’s not right,
you should do it this way.
am I a threat.
So they strike back
against what is threatening them,
threatening their carefully cultivated view of themselves,
of their construct of how the world works.
here is a proof for what i am saying:
If they knew the truth they wouldn’t get mad.
I don’t get mad…because I know the truth.
I know how the arts fit together,
I know all the tricks,
the gimmicks and methods,
the way it all works,
so I don’t get mad
when these fellows speak ill of me
on blogs and chatrooms and so on.
If you know the truth you don’t get mad,
you can look down to their level,
and see what it is they don’t understand.
The problem is…
you can’t make them understand
if they don’t want to understand,
that is to say,
if they are holding to the small bits of truth
they did manage to accumulate,
to the methods and things that they constructed
to try to make sense
out of the martial arts
which don’t always make sense.
the specific fellow who was attacking me,
was dissecting one of my Kenpo books.
And it gets very interesting.
he claimed I wasn’t a serious student of Kenpo,
in the book,
I explained that i wasn’t a serious student of Kenpo,
that I was applying matrixing principles
to what i had learned decades ago.
he said my work needed more depth,
in my book,
I set forth the idea that this was a beginning,
and that somebody should come along
and exploit my principles
to look deeper.
Do you get it?
He was saying things I had already pointed out in my book.
He was criticizing me
using points i had already used to criticize myself.
Not very creative,
especially for so called critical thinking.
here’s the kicker.
in his attack he made an interesting statement, he said something to the effect that he had read my books,
and that at a certain point he came face to face with
a different way of seeing things.
This was the effect of matrixing.
And he immediately pushed it aside,
which is to say,
he held on to his carefully constructed world,
and was unable to evolve.
I will say something else.
In my books I tell people, very plainly,
that they can’t just read the books,
they have to do the techniques,
then they will understand,
then they will get what I am talking about.
I gauran-forking-tee he did not do this.
He was a seventh grader,
thinking he was a teacher,
and he read the book without doing ANY of the techniques.
Without experiencing what I was really saying.
If he had done the book,
instead of reading it like a comic,
he would have been changed,
that different viewpoint would have popped out,
nice and neat and gently overwhelming,
and he would have evolved.
His art would have evolved.
He would have become a teacher,
a real teacher,
instead of a seventh grader thinking he was a teacher.
I know what I have just said
is the absolute truth,
because I have seen it work over the last ten years.
There are thousands of people who have DONE the material I have written.
Who have DONE the forms and techniques.
Who have DONE the drills.
And my wins book is packed with their stories.
Over six hundred pages of thanks yous.
Of ‘how did you ever figure this out?’
Of ‘OMG, I am making my own art,
and it all makes so much sense!’
So that is the point i want to make here.
You can read about,
or you can do.
But don’t bother criticizing what I’ve done
until you have done it for yourself.
Don’t be a seventh grader,
thinking you know it all,
when you only know what a seventh grader knows.
Don’t settle for that.
that brings us to where this matrixing thing is going.
Let me make a few points.
I love the martial arts.
There is nothing i love more than doing the forms,
working out with people,
it is all a ball.
I left the fighting part of the martial arts decades ago.
I lived in a time that has passed
where i was able to accumulate all the data,
and make sense of it,
and I was able to put fighting aside.
the point of matrixing is to help you do this, too.
To learn how to fight so well,
that fighting stops being a game of chance,
and becomes a scientific endeavor,
where you analyze and handle people
like you are a teacher,
and they are seventh graders.
We are talking about actual evolution here.
If you lived fifty years,
you would have fifty years worth of knowledge.
But what if I could give you that knowledge in a year or two?
where would you be in fifty years then?
You would be at a hundred years,
because you would have my fifty,
plus your fifty.
And here is the interesting thing,
the martial arts accelerate beyond that,
once they are matrixed.
It is not just about getting my fifty years of knowledge,
it is about getting thousands of years of knowledge,
all the knowledge accumulated by the ancients
and passed down,
and finally made sense of.
Let me ask you a question:
what step of evolution is it
where you don’t get mad?
You watch the world
and everybody gets mad.
The politicians lie and get mad,
the corporate bosses,
for all their success,
cheat and steal,
and get awfully mad.
People on the street,
they get mad in their cars,
they flip each other off,
they have road rage,
they beat each other up with baseball bats.
Husbands and wives get mad,
they snipe at each other,
and the next thing you know
the man punches out the wife,
the wife does a Lorena Bobbit,
do you get it?
From the playgrounds of our ‘educational’ institutions
to the prisons,
to the businesses and politicis,
we are a raging,
I don’t get mad.
And I am telling you exactly why,
because I have done the martial arts so much
that I have given up fighting.
Because I understand what frustrations
all those seventh graders are having out there.
Do you want to get ‘unmad?’
Do you want to give up anger?
Do you want to understand,
not like a seventh grader,
hopped up on GMO and vaccines and testosterone and all that,
but like a calm, patient teacher?
Do you like a world where you are out of control?
Where you travel from one conflict to the other,
and never partake of the chocolate cake in-between?
That’s what I am selling,
that’s the truth of what Matrixing does.
That’s where you would be,
if you could suddenly ‘evolve’ yourself.
If you could leap past all the minor frustrations
of a society that is dedicated to killing itself.
the interesting thing is this:
I have often thought about taking all the books off the market
that are attempts to apply matrixing to other arts.
It just seems to cause so much anger.
People think I am trying to destroy their construction,
instead of enhance it.
They think i am attacking their art,
when I am only trying to make it bigger,
When all I want is to take them to the end of one street,
and show them a thousand other streets.
When I just want to evolve them.
My consideration is simple.
Are my books causing anger among those unable to understand
because they cannot do more than read,
because they cannot do,
because they cannot understand the instructions?
Something to think about,
I’ve also thought about,
and even begun work
on setting up lines of endeavor
which can be closely watched.
I made an attempt at Monkeyland,
and still think about the mistakes made I made,
and how i could fix them.
I’ve thought about setting up a website
dedicated to taking people step by step,
but not allowing them to purchase the next step,
until they have completed the previous step.
And there are reasons I haven’t done this yet,
though I have made half starts.
Reasons like I don’t have the time and wherewithal.
Not very good reasons are these, I admit,
but…that is where I am.
hope I didn’t bore you,
hope I actually made some sense with this ranting,
but let me just say this…
the most important course I’ve got
is the Master Instructor Course.
I push it more than any other,
because it lays out the way energy works in the martial arts,
it presents how techniques work.
And it tends to divest one of ALL the false reasons
behind the actual martial arts.
It tells you the information you need to instruct.
It opens the door
to the way of becoming
a calm, patient teacher,
and not a seventh grader.
How Ignorant People act in Kenpo and Karate and Other Martial Arts
March, what a wonderful month. I’m going to work out every single day, right into April. You do, too!
I was checking my stats on Amazon, and reading the reviews people write about me. Interesting reading. But crazy. Let me explain.
I’ll get two reviews for a book, one is a five star review,
VERY Interesting.. and I like the “creation” theories and methods… JUST what I was looking for. and one is a one star review.
Waste of time if you are a serious martial artist…poor illustrations…bad
The five star talks about interesting ideas. The one star just says ‘stupid.’ Hmmm.
How could one book provoke two such dissimilar reviews?
Well, let me tell you.
I received an email a while ago, the fellow said: I don’t understand all the writing, but when I see the pictures (videos), then I get it.
Well, of course, a picture is worth a thousand words. BUT the real key here is that he didn’t understand the writing.
Here are some frightening statistics.
50% of adults can’t read at 8th grade level. 45 million people are functionally illiterate. and, one that is very important, 6 out of 10 households don’t buy a single book in a year.
Let’s consider the implications of these statistics as they relate to my books.
Out of the 50% adults that can’t read at 8th grade level, there are going to be a substantial number who are passionate about the martial arts. They are going to read what some people see as five star material, but because they don’t understand it, because there aren’t enough pictures, they are going to perceive it as worthless. At best, they are going to sense that something just passed them by, and they are going to be pissed. Pissed enough to give one star.
Out of the 45 million that are functionally illiterate, some are passionate, they live in blogs with small words, and they are, again, angry. A rich life is passing them by, and though they feel that something is happening, they can’t see it.
But here’s the kicker, 6 out of 10 don’t buy a book in a year. But they do read on the computer, and they are vocally upset, when they don’t understand what somebody has said.
This is the defense mechanism of the ignorant: get upset when you don’t understand something.
Now, why do I bring this up. Because I get a few low reviews, that discourages others from buying, and the vey valuable knowledge that is in my books, is then removed from the hands of the consumer. The intelligent consumer who needs to know, but is being waylaid by the ignorant.
Feel free to give a review. I prefer nice, but honest will do.
When you see a bad review, especially if you have read the book, and disagree, answer them. I can’t, but you can. Set the record straight.
And, make sure you are literate, that your children are literate, and that knowledge can be passed down.
This world is not Rep v Dem, it is not haves v have nots, it is ignorant v intelligent, and if the intelligent don’t set the ignorant straight, then the intelligent lose. So do you want the world to get more intelligent? Or more ignorant?
Here’s the book which received the reviews I listed above.
Newsletter 798 The Importance of a Black Belt in the Martial Arts
Good afternoon! Absolutely stunning day. Absolutely perfect for a work out.
Hey, I had somebody ask me, the other day, what belt I was. It’s a legitimate question.
I received my black belt in 1974. It was in a classical karate system, the Kang Duk Won.
And, a few years ago, a bunch of my black belts decided I should be an 8th black belt. I had some forty years training at the time. But it was sort of interesting. we had a wall, and everybody who made black belt got a plaque on the wall. We had a dozen or so plaques, and somebody noticed there wasn’t one for me. So they got together and got an 8th black plaque for me.
The funny thing is I didn’t notice it for quite some time.
Here’s the deal. I’m proud of my black belt. But, shortly after I received my belt, I lost all interest in belts and promotions and such. (Though I did appreciate what my black belts did)
Simply, I became addicted to the information, the the art, to the development of myself in a spiritual sense. But that’s me. For those who have just begun, you should be very concerned with earning a legitimate black belt.
A legitimate black belt carries with it the realization, the knowledge, that you have just begun to learn. If you earned a black belt, and you didn’t get that thought, then there is a good chance that you aren’t legitimate. You haven’t CBMed, made the art into yourself, inverted your viewpoint of the world, haven’t understood that reality is the illusion, and yourself is the projector.
Now, the real point of the martial arts is this: Does it work.
First, does it work as self defense. Can you defend yourself?
Second, does it make you grow spiritually? Do you understand your worth as an ‘I am,’ do you see yourself as a point of awareness, do you understand how your thoughts control the universe?
I suppose, analyzing my own preferences, that is why I prefer Karate first, and Tai Chi second.
Karate works. It makes my bones hard, puts snap in my muscles, and gives me long life.
Tai Chi works also. It makes me sensitive, removes me from illusion, and gives me long life.
And, interestingly, Tai Chi, learned effectively, is one of the most incredible self defense styled martial arts I have ever experienced.
And, they provide me with a ‘hard and soft’ progression of art. After you do a bit of matrixing, you can see how karate can become tai chi. And how tai chi enhances Karate.
All very interesting.
If you are experienced with the hard, I recommend the soft. If you are experienced with the soft, I recommend the hard.
It’s the only way to be sure that you really understand all aspects of the martial arts.
The trick, of course, is to make sure you matrix BOTH martial arts.
It’s hot here in LA, and you can really sweat those toxins out. The best way to sweat? Work out!
I was driving down the street the other day, and I saw all sorts of martial arts studios. MMA, Muay Thai, Boxing, Karate, Kung fu, Kenpo, Judo, Aikido, Taekwondo, and on and on and on.
When I began, in 1967, which is near 50 years ago, there was judo, which was taught in a few places, and there was Karate. Interestingly, Karate was undergoing a boom. This was just before Bruce Lee, and the Tracy Brothers had breathed fire into marketing, and Karate schools were opening every where.
I began Kenpo, went every day, became an instructor, and so on, and I had a lot of questions, and nowhere to get the answers. The only magazine was Black Belt, and they sort of circled the arts, talking about, but never delving in.
And there weren’t many books. There was the outlandish Super Karate Made Easy, Ed Parker had a book out, Robert Smith wrote his book on Shaolin Temple boxing. But these books were either techniques books, or they talked in mysteries, and there was no way to understand what the heck the martial arts were all about.
Then I came across a book called Zen Flesh, Zen Bones. I had left kenpo by then, and was in the Kang Duk Won, and this book was a Godsend.
Not a book about technique, not a dissertation of mental tricks, rather questions and tales that made you blink, and look for the real you.
One of my favorites was the old question, ‘Who were you before you were born.’
Now you might be wondering, how can an art built of physical routines answer that question?
The answer to that wonderment lies in the simple fact that we were not distracted. Karate was not infected by boxing, throws weren’t an active part. And so on.
On the surface, looking back, reading these words as I write them, I can understand why people might wonder, how can you call that an art? How can you think of that stripped down sapling as a wondrous forest of spirit?
Easy. We weren’t distracted, and we practiced those few techniques we knew until we could make them work.
Enlightenment is when you do one thing without distraction, until you see the truth of that one thing.
You have heard people like Bruce Lee say, in the end, a punch is just a punch, a kick is just a kick.
But, here’s the bad news, if you haven’t found that out through doing a simple kick, or punch, without distraction, for tens of thousands of times, then the truth of the statement evades you.
You know about water, but you’ve never been wet.
That is why, except for a few logical changes, and the nudging of matrixing, the karate I do now, is virtually the same as the karate I did way back when.
Pinan one through pinan five, the iron horse, a few others, I do them almost the same as I learned them. And, here’s the interesting thing, the way I learned them was only a couple of generations removed from the way they were taught before Funakoshi.
I go into modern schools and I don’t see what I learned. I see forms infected by boxing, distracted by MMA, slanted by tournaments and kick boxing. I see techniques discarded because people can’t make them work. I see people fighting, instead of painstakingly being taught the drills that lead to…not fighting, to scientifically assessing an opponent and shredding him without waste.
Most of all, I don’t see the calm of mind, the calm that comes not from knowing about lots of arts, but from knowing one thing well. And, in these modern times, if people do know one thing well, it has been slanted by ‘reality fighting,’ by the desire to beat up your fellow man, not to calm yourself, and find the truth of yourself.
Not to find out who you were before you were born.
Here’s the art that I was taught, unchanged except for a few logical tweaks, and the ‘de-slanting’ of matrixing.
Go to the Testimonials in the menu and do a search for your martial art!
Hi Sensei Al!
(On the Black Belt Course) Everything is working great! Thank you for the quick responses. I am enjoying the one on one videos. It may be cliche, but I do feel like I'm there. I also like the conversational style and the way you explain how you're teaching and why. You've got a new student for life. Thank you. ~ Daniel
What's interesting about Al Case's writings and teachings is there isn't any emphasis on 'the unknown' or 'mystery' behind martial arts. Al will slam this information in your face! Quite frankly the data isn't hidden, you'll find you're blind. ~ WG
Al Case is a powerful presence to be around, but if you can confront it, then you will not be sorry, for there is no one like him, and it is an extreme privilege and honor.
I used to read your articles in Inside Karate and was excited when I found your web site. ~ RV
As an old timer with thirty-five years of experience I was really bored, but your works have peaked my interest and shown me that there is much more to learn. I Thank You Again, Sincerely ~ CC
Where was this information 24 years ago? This course is one of the best things to ever happen to me. Thank you Al Case for the gift of knowledge!
Be blessed my teacher, ~ Rev. Ernest R
I bought the Infinite Fist tape YEARS ago and you know? I Keep going back to it! ~ KS
You are a master. You have opened me up to things that I have never thought of before. ~ KFM
I purchased your course on "Create Your Own Martial Art" and absolutely love it. I believe that your matrixing system is very unique. ~ DW
In my entire experience twenty years as a student and an instructor since, no one has contributed more to my martial arts education than you have. I started following your works twenty years ago and although I was young then I knew you had the True Art it was obvious to me even then. ~ Charles C
Students will know longer be slaves of poor instructors and practitioners. ~ Lonnie M
Win from Master Instructor Course
Let me start out by saying thank you. Thanks from all the martial artists who asked why. Al, I'm in the Security and Law enforcement field and carry Instructor credentials, so effective methods in combat and teaching them is what I constantly look for.
Win from Matrix Aikido
I just had to write to you to say WOW. Your INSTANT AIKIDO is great!!! ~ SD
My students have started coming up to me after class telling me how much more they are enjoying it, and that the classes have stopped being so ridged and now flow in a kind of give and take between me and them. I have stopped being a task master and started having fun and letting them teach me as well.
I did the Master Instructor Course and it hit me. The Basics that are so concisely communicated in this course including the Matrix principle IS the solution. It doesn’t matter what “style” I call my art, because all styles follow these same principles. It doesn’t matter how hard I train or how many repetitions I do if I don’t train the right way. And I would never become a master if I didn’t know how it all fits together. Now I do! I can honestly say that I am now on the path that I have always sought as a martial artist. Thank you Al!
I conducted a Matrix Aikido training class for a Security Team at a local manufacturing plant. I tailored the training according to their Use Of Force policy. As you know they need control and takedown skills. I knew Matrix Aikido would be the answer. The training plan you shared was boss. The class went so smoothly. The participants learned very quickly. By the end of the class you could see techniques of Monkey Boxing coming through. They were also able to create their own techniques. There was one female officer in the class who asked to become my private student. She was throwing, locking and taking down guys twice her size. The Security Supervisor wants me to come back and with more participants! I'll keep you posted. ~ L M
Have found your books and dvds excellent. My background is mainly in medical qigong but I practice Sun Style Tai CHi, BaGua and HsingI as well as Eagle Claw, Snake Style Kung Fu and several Wudang weapon styles. This is the first time I have had the underlying principles so clearly explained and in a way that they are immediately workable and demonstratable. I have worked through the Master Instructors Course, Aikido and Butterfly Bagua and have started to breakdown the Sun Hsing I using your matrix method. I was even able to teach a 70 year old friend of mine with no martial arts background your instant aikido where she was able to do some very accomplished locks and throws after the first lesson