Brutalizing the Martial Arts

Newsletter 936

What’s the Difference Between a Martial Art?

Why did you sign up for the martial arts?
What reason was ticking away in the back of your skull?
If you’re like me it was probably to get tough,
to be strong enough to fight back against the bullies.
And that is the secret of selling the martial arts.

To sell something you have to find a problem,
and offer what you’re selling as the solution.

The problem the martial arts addresses
is the student’s poor opinion of himself,
his desire not to be victim to all the people who bully him.
And this problem/solution has been selling the martial arts
since time was invented.

I remember a book in the fifties/sixties,
‘Super Karate Made Easy.’
And you don’t have to look for it,
it’s here…

http://monstermartialarts.com/free-martial-arts-books/

In this book situations were presented
in which the reader was addressed as being helpless,
but has fortunately studied a mysterious art.
Here’s a sample…

Your opponent tip-toes behind you and grabs your hair. To stop the hair pulling throw both your hands above your head and grab his hand. Follow thru with repeated smashes of the foot to opponent’s shin or down hard on his instep. That will be the last time this ingrate will get into your hair!

Do you see it?
You were a victim,
now you are offering the punishment.
This book sold…MILLIONS.
Wasn’t a very good book,
but it had the formula down,
present the reader as victim,
offer the solution.

When I signed up for Kenpo
I was fodder for the sales guy,
because I had just come through high school,
which means I had been bullied for four years.

In fact,
my parents told me to
shape up,
listen up,
shut up,
toe the line,
don’t fight back,
do what you’re told
and so on.

Then my teachers said to
shape up,
listen up,
shut up,
toe the line,
don’t fight back,
do what you’re told
and so on.

Even the other kids told me
shape up,
listen up,
shut up,
toe the line,
don’t fight back,
do what you’re told
and so on.

I wasn’t being raised…or educated,
I was being prepared for a life of
shape up,
listen up,
shut up,
toe the line,
don’t fight back,
do what you’re told
and so on.

So when I walked into that karate school,
and they offered me a solution,
man…I JUMPED AT IT!

Want to know a bad secret?
If you want to make money in the martial arts,
start up a website,
put a few techniques down on paper,
and surround them with descriptions of mayhem,
and sell them as a book.
And advertise the book by telling people they are weak,
and your ‘system’ are the solution.
Guaranteed.
You are going to get rich.

You don’t think so?
Go back through the internet scams
of the last few decades.

The guy
(who is described in a way that reminds you of you)
walks into a dangerous situation
(a bar, a party, a convention of skinheads)
accidentally offends
(bumps, is shoved into, makes a joke)
a bully
(a biker, a skinhead, a big drunk)
and uses a secret technique
(fight ender, prison elbows)
taught to him by a mysterious person
(monk, nun, spetznatz operative, green beret)
and he will share this system with you
for a price ending in 7.
(37.00, 47,00, etc.)

So why am I telling you this?
Because the other day I came across a website,
it was selling the same old same old,
a new and efficient system,
tossed out the slop,
focused on brutalizing the opponent.

I want you to think about that.
Brutalizing the opponent.
Isn’t that why you started the martial arts?
To stop being brutalized?
And now people are being sold on brutalizing.
They have become the problem.

The truth is that the martial arts have shifted.
They have gone from ‘defend yourself,’
to ‘beat the crap out of somebody.’
We have stopped seeking the solution,
and started seeking the problem.
Weird.

Now,
here’s the truth.
When I walk into a martial arts school,
I meet people who are not competent.
They don’t know how to teach the martial arts,
so they push fighting.
Not the martial arts,
but fighting.

Instead of drilling until one is aware of how a technique works,
the student is taught to fight…fight…fight!

Instead of learning how to control his body,
and thus the body of an opponent,
the student is taught how to brutalize.
Sure,
it’s all in the name of justice and humanity,
but it’s not in the spirit of justice and humanity.

What’s the solution?
Present the truth,
as best you can,
and hope you can penetrate to the human being
before he catches on fire.

The martial arts are not about fighting,
they are about not fighting.
About stopping the bully without beating the crap out of him.

It’s not about hitting the bag so hard you bust it,
it is about investing yourself with awareness.

Here’s the truth:
it’s not about beating some bully up,
it is about beating yourself up,
working out until you are so strong and competent
that the bully doesn’t come near you.
That is the way you create a peaceful world.
Not by pounding it into shape,
but by pounding yourself into awareness.

Here’s a win to encourage you.

Hello sir, I hope this email finds you in good spirits. I just wanted to give you an update on my progress with the Butterfly Pa Kua Chang training. I have kept up the 3 hours a day training, adding in some training elements such a lion holding the ball and the serving tea cups exercises. On the weekends I’ve been training at the parks here in Philadelphia, while my kids run around playing.

As previously mentioned I have a lot of martial experience, but Pa Kua Chang is unlike anything I had ever done in the past. It took me a good couple of months to get used to, but I have a real firm grasp of all of the basics and have even worked on my own double changes, three in total. I am absolutely addicted to it!!!

I can’t thank you enough for putting the course out there for people like me, who have no access to learning it in person here. I’ve even had several people stop me at the parks and ask to follow along with the movements as I walk the circle!

Thank you sir,
Fred

Have a great work out!

Al

Here’s the PKC course

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/butterfly-pa-kua-chang/

Martial Arts Work Outs That Change You!

Newsletter 935

Why Do a Martial Arts Work Out?

Good and HOT day to you!
It’s over a 100 here in so cal,
And PERFECT for working out!

Hey,
Can I get in your face for a moment?
How much do you work out?
The whole purpose of this newsletter
is to encourage the work out.
So how much do you work out?

To me,
A work out is like a prayer.
I work out EVERY day.
Rain or shine,
Hot or cold,
In good health or poor.
Heck,
Because of working out I’m 70,
and feel like a 25 year old.
I think that makes it all pretty important.

When I work out I get in touch with me.
My thoughts are clearer all day,
Bushwah that bugs me
Suddenly recedes,
Becomes unimportant.
Problems become easy.
People who are difficult suddenly become…easy.
So how much do you work out?

Let me tell you something…
When I was working for my black belt
All those years ago,
I didn’t work out as much as I should.
I just worked out at the school,
Thought that was the only place to work out.
Boy,
Was I dumb.
Then,
Over the years,
I became aware of how much martial arts was doing for me.
I began obsessing.
Reading everything,
Studying everything,
Working out until the wee hours.
But,
You know,
I always have this little niggle inside.
I had wasted time.
I had not worked out obsessively back in the beginning.
I had only worked out at the school.
What wasted opportunities.
When I was fresh and full of vim and vigor,
I relaxed.
I wasted.
What a dope.

So that’s the message of this newsletter,
Now and always…

WORK OUT!
Agree with me or not,
Disagree or not,
The fact is that this is a reminder.
Nothing more,
Nothing less.

Here’s a recent win to encourage you.

Al,

I have gone through many of your courses and am currently going through blinding steel and eventually on my way to forty monkeys. I recently went through your book Matrixing Tong Bei. Several things clicked and the martial arts universe opened up after finishing that book.
Respectfully,
Tyler K

Come on,
Guys and gals,
Work out and make the universe open up for you!

Have a great work out!

Al

Here;S the Blinding Steel course, in it you learn how to matrix ALL weapons!

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/3a-blinding-steel-matrixing-weapons/

How Not To Hurt Yourself in the Martial Arts

Newsletter 934

Martial Arts Injuries!

I don’t usually get injured,
And when I do it’s usually something stupid.
I detached a tendon in the fourth finger of my right hand.
Stupid.
And it takes six weeks to grow back.
But,
Every tragedy is an opportunity,
So let me elucidate on that.

First,
When you are injured
You figure out better ways to do things,
You are forced out of the same old same old,
And start to think,
How can I do this technique?
Should I change angles?
Use the other hand in a different way?
And so on.
And,
There is a bump in awareness.
You have to move so that you don’t impact,
But rather match the trajectory
Of whatever is incoming.
So you learn stuff,
And get smarter.
But stupid injuries are still just that…
stupid.

And,
At this point,
Let me offer the injury formula,
If not for your benefit,
Then mine.

Speed plus Ignorance equals Injury.
S + Ig = In

Geez.
You’d think I would have that down,
eh?

Except that it is a caution to go slow enough
to engage your ability to analyze,
And not a guarantee.

Anyway,
That all said,
Let me point out that
‘Chiang Nan’
Is the book that teaches you
how to make karate into Tai Chi.
I’ll be doing a lot of Chiang Nan
For the next six weeks,
And I urge you to look into it.

http://monstermartialarts.com/how-to-translate-karate-into-tai-chi-chuan/

It has a TREMENDOUS amount of knowledge,
And a whole new way of looking at the martial arts.

And,
One other reason I am pushing this book,
I am about to come out with a new one.
So get caught up,
Don’t get left behind.
I’ll let you know about it,
Probably the next newsletter.

Okely Doggone Dokely,
I wave my busted finger at you,
And caution you…
WORK OUT HARD
You never when you’re going to get busted.
(insert a trickle of a tear down my cheek here)

Al

http://monstermartialarts.com/how-to-translate-karate-into-tai-chi-chuan/

To Be a Truly Unique Martial Artist…

Newsletter 934

Outside the Martial Arts Box!

I used to ask my instructor
what he did to get better.
What did he work on?
What were his training methods?
He answered me:
‘I just do the forms.’
But he could stick his index finger
through a board and leave a hole.
Obviously,
there had to be something more.
It took me a while,
but I figured out the ‘extra ingredient.’
Going outside the box.

For instance,
I’ve written about his kicking bag.
We couldn’t go to a store and buy a bag back then,
we had to make our own.
I bought a duffle bag,
packed it with sawdust,
used it for a while.
It was a true piece of…stuff.
But it worked,
and I practiced,
and my kicks got better.
He did the same thing,
sort of.
He was able to find the canvas ‘sleeves.
He filled it with sawdust,
and the thing was too light,
didn’t pack right,
fell out of shape after a few hundred kicks.
So he experimented,
going ‘outside the box,’
and packed it with sawdust and water.
It got moldy.
He tried adding bleach.
Got soggy,
and he tried other methods.
His stroke of
outside the box
genius?
He cut newspapers in circles,
and stacked the circles in the bag.
Rock hard,
never fell out of shape,
light enough to hang without bending the rafters,
and so on.
This is true ‘out of the box’ thinking.
He did something totally unique,
nobody had EVER done anything like this,
and likely haven’t since then.
But his kicks were truly…
outside the box.

So,
let me describe the trap you are currently in,
which stops you from thinking outside the box.
I came across a fellow on the net,
and he was talking about if bags get too hard
you can’t kick them.
And he’s going into the physics,
and how it is physically impossible
according to the rules of the universe,
and so on.
If my instructor had ever paid attention to the physics…
he never would have made that bag.
He would have been trapped by,
not the physics,
but the belief system surrounding physics.

I was once told that a bumble bee can’t fly.
His weight is too much,
his wings too stubby,
according to physics,
the bumble bee can’t fly.
Thank god the bumble bee doesn’t know physics.
Thank god the bumblebee has his own belief system.

And we get all these athletes
training by physics,
eating the food,
using the training devices,
following regimens described by people
who know physics.

Before the four minute mile was cracked,
it was considered impossible.
No human could ever do that.
Now,
on the top tier of runners,
you’re sort of a wannabe
if you can’t break the four minute mile.
But the physics didn’t change.
What changed was people’s belief in physics.
Or,
they didn’t accept the physics,
and they went ahead and broke the rules.
Went outside the box.
Did something that nobody believed they could do,
just because,
in their supreme moment of ignorance,
they believed in themselves,
and ignored the idiots.
They went outside the box.

When my instructor kicked that bag,
it was too hard,
he should have broken his foot.
But,
he figured out how to kick the bag a little,
and his foot got stronger,
but more important,
his belief that he COULD kick that bag got stronger.
And,
as he kept kicking that bag,
his kicks slowly improved,
and his belief system,
his idea of what it was possible for him to do,
changed.

So that is how you go outside the box.
You get an idea,
you chip away at it,
you look at it,
and you expand your belief system
beyond the belief system
of those that are trapped by belief systems.

Now,
you don’t have a unique idea?
Yes,
you do.
When the instructor has you do ten kicks in class,
do eleven.
Go home and do a hundred.
I noticed that the fellows in my school
who had the best kicks,
were practicing 200 kicks per kick per side.
So I went home and started practicing
250 kicks per kick per side.
And,
man,
am I glad I did.
I’m 70 now,
and when I practice with these young kids,
my front kick is still faster,
and they really don’t like blocking it,
it hurts them to block it.

And,
what about forms?
Do you do your forms twice or thrice
and then call it?
How about doing your forms ten times?
Or,
have you ever done a form100 times in a row?
It changes you.
It changes the way you think about forms.
It changes your belief in forms.
Something I used to do,
I was practicing Tai Chi,
and I decided to pile stance it.
There are about 108 moves
in the classical form,
I took a full minute to do each move.
Took me two hours to do one form.
But,
Lord,
I was different after that.
My Tai Chi was different,
and I started to really understand
what the old Tai Chi masters were talking about.

Anyway,
I hope this gives you an idea on how to think outside the box.
The only advantage you’ve got is your imagination,
imagination IS thinking outside the box,
so put in a little extra sweat,
and put yourself outside the box.

And,
obligatory ad,
The book,
Chiang Nan,
is definitely outside the box.
I combined Karate and Tai Chi,
and got some interesting results,
results not covered by the fellows spouting their physics.
Here’s the link.

https://www.amazon.com/Chiang-Nan-Al-Case/dp/198767765X

Have a great work out!

Al

Here’s a link for an article about when I first started doing this book on Kenjutsu.
I intended to finish it quickly, but it’s actually been five years!

https://alcase.wordpress.com/2013/12/02/new-book-about-the-samurai-sword-is-coming/

Sneaky Martial Arts Weapons Secret!

Newsletter 932

The Sneaky Secret of Martial Arts Weapons!

GOOD MORNING!

Don’t mean to shout,
but it really is a good morning.
Absolutely PERFECT for working out!

Hey,
I want to tell you something that you don’t know.
Makes it a secret,
right?
So here’s the secret.

Take a stance,
extend your awareness.
Your opponent moves towards you,
and as soon as he steps on your territory,
you move.

Pretty simple,
right?
Everybody knows that.

What people don’t know
is that if you stand upright and extend your hands
the tips of your fingers define your personal space.
Oh,
not exactly,
there’s some fudge here and there,
but generally speaking,
if you were to stand and simply spin,
with your arms outstretched,
you could draw a circle on the ground
and find that the tips of your fingers
define your personal space.
More or less.
Close enough for government work.

Okay,
that’s cool,
a lot of people don’t know that,
but maybe you did.
So here we go.

Stand upright,
half a weapon,
and spin,
and the tip of the weapon
defines your personal space.

I find this so fascinating.
A weapon isn’t alive,
yet your personal space,
the distance to which your awareness of body reaches,
expands appropriate to the distance of a weapon.

We are talking about how much space
your awareness fills.

We are talking about expanding your awareness.

If that doesn’t twiddle your pork chops,
I don’t know what will.

Educators say you can’t get smarter,
you can only get dumber.
People accept the shrinking of their awareness
as a result of livingness.

Yet awareness is the real you,
and you can extend it,
make it bigger,
get smarter in a way
that educators and other dopes
have no understanding of.

So you practice the martial arts,
you are as effective as far as you can extend awareness,
which is to say,
you’ve got as much space as a pup tent.
But by the mere fact of picking up a weapon,
the tent gets bigger.
You get bigger.

And,
as you figure out how to move that weapon,
you become ever more aware of the space around you.
Cool.

Now you understand why I push my latest course,
Matrix Kenjutsu.

You see,
you don’t need to study a course
that takes years and even decades.
You don’t have to follow a line of techniques
that meanders here and there,
and might make you a bigger awareness,
and might not.

Now you can go straight to the bigger awareness,
fill in all of the space with real you.
And that is the glory
of the logic
of Matrixing Kenjutsu.

Onkly Doggie,
I’d tell you more,
but all I’d be doing
is telling you how to get bigger and smarter,
and the truth is not in my words,
it is in you picking up the sword,
the staff,
and growing your awareness,
finally realizing the truth of that old saw…
‘A weapon is an extension of the self.’
Now you know why,
and that should make your next work out…
TRULY FANTASTIC!

Al

http://monstermartialarts.com/matrixing-kenjutsu/

Here’s a link for an article about when I first started doing this book.
I intended to finish it quickly, but it’s actually been five years!

https://alcase.wordpress.com/2013/12/02/new-book-about-the-samurai-sword-is-coming/

Do I Need to Study ALL the Martial Arts Just to Hurt Somebody

Newsletter 929

I Just Need One Technique That Will Kill Everybody!

I get this every once in a while,
somebody wants to find the ‘magic technique,’
the technique that works for everything.
Somebody wants to study just one thing
and be able to kill anybody with it.

Now,
I am not going to teach you how to spell comic book,
and for a simple reason,
there actually is a technique,
a perfect technique,
that will do this.
And,
not to be mystical,
or obfuscate,
it is the last move at the end of Seisan.
Go ahead,
find it,
see what it does,
figure it out,
and practice just that one technique.

BUT,
that having been said,
I want to describe the philosophy behind
why you have to learn a whole martial art,
spend years studying,
instead of just buying a gun.

Okay,
first,
let’s consider celestial navigation.
You want to take your rocket ship to Arcturus.
You blast off,
you’re sailing away,
but…where is that durned star?
You’re confused by the time you reach Jupiter.
There’s the big dipper,
bunch of stars over there,
and the seven sisters,
and..Beetlejuice?

Wish you had a map, eh?

Now,
let’s compare that to taking somebody DOWN!
You punch for the throat,
except he’s punching too,
so you shift, and he misses, but you miss.
But his arm is there,
so you go for an elbow roll,
except he’s twisting in response,
but your foot is…

Do you get the idea?
The same as going for a star without a map,
there is amazing confusion in a fight.
So you have to make a map.
You have to make it with your experience.

You punch,
he strikes,
but you’ve studied slipping in JKD,
the elbow roll comes,
he shifts,
but you know about shifting from Tai Chi.
he strikes,
but you know about dropping an elbow from karate,
and you finally strike him in the throat,
AND…manipulate him,
AND…take him down.

Now,
the analogy may not be quite clear,
so let me elucidate.
You find arcturus by your knowledge of what and where the other stars are.
AND…
you achieve your takedown by navigating a map of the human body,
by knowing where the joints are and how they turn,
by understanding leverage,
by subtle shifts of anatomy,
his and yours,
and you navigate to the final strike and takedown.

So when you study a whole art,
instead of buying a gun,
or searching for that mystical one finger technique
that reverse spirals the energy
so that the chakra explodes
in the fourth lumbar…
what you are doing is studying
a method for navigating the body.
No star will confuse you,
no motion or joint will confuse,
and you will find your way to…
better health,
understanding that common folk don’t have,
and the certainty that martial arts bring.

So, the best map for understanding the body,
because it can be applied to ANY martial Art!
Is
The Master Instructor Course.
You learn how the body works.
You learn how techniques work.
You can make any art work,
any technique work,
you understand forms better,
and…and it just gets better.

Here be da link!

http://www.martialartsinstructortraining.com

Have a great work out!
Al

Here’s the link for the ‘One Terrorist, one bomb, one martial arts technique… http://www.sooperarticles.com/sports-articles/martial-arts-articles/one-terrorist-one-bomb-one-martial-artist-1657952.html

http://www.martialartsinstructortraining.com

How to Create and Name Your Martial Arts Style

Newsletter 927

On Naming a Martial Art

One time I was down at the offices of CFW,
which published the Inside Karate mag,
which I wrote articles and a column for.
One of the guys,
in charge of video,
suddenly called to me.
‘Hey, Al! Got something to show you!’
I went into the video room and he put on a tape.
The tape was a half hour long,
but within a few seconds I knew what it was.
The guy on the tape was a perfect Bruce Lee imitation.
He swooped wooped,
he swung the nunchucks
EXACTLY
as Bruce had swing them in his movies.
Move for move.
He spoke lines from the movies,
and it was eery,
it was almost as if he WAS Bruce!

But,
of course,
he was just a copy cat,
a guy without much of a life,
a guy who didn’t know who he was,
so mimicked others.

That leads us into this weeks subject…
I am very big on people creating their own martial arts.
There is a simple reason for this.
If you just learn what has gone before,
then you are only a copy cat.
But when you create your own art,
when you alter the moves to fit your frame,
when you craft energy to fit your situation,
when you rearrange pieces of arts
to fit changing situations…
then you are an art.
Would Michaelangelo be an artist
if he merely copied everything Davinci did?
Same thing is true for the martial artist.
Yes,
you should learn,
and that usually implies at least getting your black belt,
in Shotokan,
or Aikido,
or whatever art you study.
But,
at a certain point you have to step outside your art.
Keep the original the same as you learned,
but create your own separate art.

Now,
that all said,
let me slide into a connected but different thing.

I subscribe to something called Quora.
On that platform people ask questions,
and answer questions.
You get a wide cross section of what people are thinking,
you get answer,
a whole host of different answers,
to questions mundane and bizarre.

Recently,
a fellow asked the question:

What’s a good name for a fictional karate style that a flow state fighter would use?

This is a very interesting question.
I have had a LOT of people ask me about naming their art.
Since I am about the only one telling people how to be artists
a lot of artists end up up sending me this question.

I remember one fellow,
many years ago,
personal student of mine.
He reached the point where he had to go out
and create his own art,
and he asked me about a name.
He was was coming up with names like…
‘The Way of the Golden Fist,’
and so on.
So I told him to call his art…

‘Rick Do.’
The way of Rick.

Fortunately,
he didn’t.
He teaches his arts
with some very fine labels.
Very smart guy.
Smart enough to know when to ignore me.

So,
anyway,
I got this question on Quora,

What’s a good name for a fictional karate style that a flow state fighter would use?

And I gave the following answer.

Interesting.

By fictional you mean to use it in a book/script? Or for own use?

What I used to do, just for stuff and giggles, was find a word, or even a zippy type word, and get it translated by google. Zippy karate, not to be facetious, but just as an example, translates as ‘bibi.’ So ‘Bi Bi Do.’ (The Way of Zippy!) This can get fun, you can have ‘crouching tigers eating unwary hunters’ translated, ‘D?n fú l?oh? ch? c?x?n de lièrén.’ Then shorten it up as you wish.

If you want to go more serious than my flippy examples you can certainly do that.

Good luck with it, and have a great work out!
Al from monstermartialarts.com

So there you go,
one of the things I do as an artist,
as an author and as a martial artist.
It is great fun,
makes you think,
and might even be worthless.

But I told everybody on Quora,
and didn’t want you guys to feel cheated,
so I pass it on here.

So try it out.
Make up a name for your art.
Focus in on what principles and tricks you want to teach,
and sum it up.
Then have google translate it into whatever language.

And,
while you’re at it,
You can always check out
the ‘Create Your Own Art’ course on the Monster.
It is old,
the video quality isn’t good,
but you can understand it all,
and the principles are SOUND!

Here’s the link.

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/2d-create-your-own-art/

Have a great work out!
Al

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/2d-create-your-own-art/

http://monstermartialarts.com