Beware the beast, man, for he is the Devil’s pawn. Alone among God’s primates, he kills for sport or lust or greed. Yea, he will murder his brother, to possess his brother’s land. Let him not breed in great numbers, for he will make a desert of his home, and yours. Shun him, drive him back into his jungle lair, for he is the harbinger of death. Cornelius
Archive for August, 2010
“Mindless hate,” on the other hand, is a kind of irrational, emotionally-charged hate speech that places no value on facts, reason or logic of any kind. It is merely an emotional discharge, almost a kind of mental vomit that has been splattered across the online world. And it contains some of the most vicious hate speech that has ever been recorded in human history.
The Japanese master Nan-in gave audience to a professor of philosophy. Serving tea, Nan-in filled his visitor’s cup, and kept pouring. The professor watched the overflow until he could restrain himself no longer: “Stop! The cup is over full, no more will go in.” Nan-in said: “Like this cup, you are full of your own opinions and speculations. How can I show you Zen unless you first empty your cup.
The ‘Emptying your cup’ parable suggests that one should keep an open mind, or at the very least one that is uncluttered. Opinions and beliefs should be replaced by a willingness to learn. I’ve often found that those needing the greatest help are the ones who promote themselves as having some special knowledge. I recognize this fault in myself.
Favourite hip-hop song for all time:
(Can I say that? Haha.)
But, seriously, it did. Let me tell you why.
1. Other than His Dark Side coaching me to keep my head forward, boxing has taught me to keep my head forward and chin tucked. Keeping my head forward and chin tucked keeps the balance when I’m in YJKYM. If I perform the ever-so-common lean back (and consequently put my head back), I’m uprooted very easily.
2. I’m all about less pigeon-toe now. Power comes from the ground no matter what endeavour I chose, so the way I used to do things is wrong. If it doesn’t work, it’s wrong. If I perform the normal pigeon-toe stance, my triangle is too small. When I ‘open up’ my stance, my triangle (therefore my ‘base’) gets bigger. But there’s a catch…I can only open it so much before it becomes no longer a triangle or eventually a backwards triangle. Boxing has shown me what a mobile and stable stance should look like – and more importantly feel like.
3. “Think wrestling with punching,” was what I once was told at the gym in regards to ‘sinking’ into my stance. I was told I was too upright. So eventually I fixed the problem and got lower in my boxing stance. From it, I gained faster evasiveness and incredible punching power. I first noticed the lowering of my Wing Chun stance when practicing the Wooden Dummy. I thought it was perhaps just an off-chance that I was incredibly powerful and stable while practicing all the movements. But after having the opportunity to practice Chi Sau with a partner, I can safely say that my stance has been lowered for the better.
Today’s brief Chi Sau session created the canvas for me to realize that things from Western Boxing have improved my Wing Chun. It got me thinking about what they were specifically so I wrote them down. …perhaps they might help you, too.
I’ve decided – when I die I only want two things:
1. For my parents to know that they did the best job raising me (they left a legacy behind)
2. To leave my own family legacy behind
Ayrton Senna was the Bruce Lee of the F1 Racing world; a trailblazer and renaissance man. He was hyper-aggressive and possessed a preternatural skill of anticipating dynamic changes during a race.
Had Ayrton Senna’s legacy limited to him driving a Tata motor vehicle, he would have remained unknown. All cars are not equal, and F1 cars are superior driving machines. It was behind the wheel of an F1 car that helped create Senna’s legacy and facilitated his rise to the top.
If a cars job is to get you to a destination, then an F1 car would get you there far faster than anything else on land. Some cars are faster than others, some look prettier than others and some are just beasts on the road. And like learning to drive, a martial artist requires the correct tuition from someone suitably qualified before one can reach a level of competence.
How does this compare to martial arts? The job of a martial art is to make someone competent at fighting. The question then is, which “vehicle” will you drive to get there? – a Ford Escort (Tai Chi), a Subaru STI (Wing Chun) or a Lamborghini Murcielago (Western boxing, MMA).