FIST LOGIC

INTENT versus INTENTION.

OR INTENT.

Intent is innate, it is wisdom, it is MIND BOXING.

Intention is acquired, it is technology, it is FIST LOGIC.

Thursday evening I was talking with Costas and George, two of my senior students about plateaus, wrong turns and misunderstandings.

As with all hiccups in understanding Wing Chun they stem from the difficulty in translating pictures, pictograms, Chinese script, into words, built from letters as used in the English language.

We only have 26 letters to choose from to describe everything that exists.

There are always going to be problems, especially when we use certain different words interchangeably.

INTENT  – INTENTION we can even get a bit deeper into the weeds with INTEND.

My Sifu, a Hong Kong-born Chinese Gentleman with a  Mother Tongue of Cantonese, who spoke first-rate English, would say that the best that can be done when translating from Chinese to English is to guess and try to get as close as possible. 

The trouble begins when the desired guess sounds very similar to something with a different meaning.

This then becomes an issue with phonetics, in fact exploiting this difference is a popular comedic device, using a word that means something completely different in the place of the expected word.

“Did you hear about the bald guy that had Rabbits tattooed all over his head because from a distance they looked like Hares”

This is a very common literary device in English.

Hair – Hare.

Where – Wear.

Pear – Pair.

Red – Read, {past tense of Read}.

Boot – Boot, {car versus left in this case}.

This is compounded even more when the students first language is not English.

How can we describe INTENT in a way that is clear and easy.

Intent is stored power, potential.

Intention is directing where to put that potential to use.

Look at it this way, if we have 3 or 4 devices that use the same battery while the battery is on the shelf its potential is the same, it can play music, shine a light, drive a toy car.

As soon as we put that battery in the device its potential becomes the devices potential.

Intent is multi-functional capable of moving in any direction for any purpose, it is the energy to do work, it is capable of any work.

Intention is directing this energy, using the energy to perform specific work.

Intent is innate, it is wisdom, it is MIND BOXING.

Intention is acquired, it is technology, it is FIST LOGIC.

Now that we have cleared this up somewhat are we any closer to knowing how to use it?

After all, action is potential realised.

HOKKA HEY.

WHAT KIND OF DAY IS IT FOR YOU?
FIST LOGIC

MIND BOXING.

Does the value lay in the act of the practice or the product of the practice’?

What is Mind Boxing?

First off it is an actual style of Kung Fu, named Yi Quan.

Yi Quan derives its name from a training method that is an intrinsic aspect of all Southern Fist Styles.

Outside of Yi Quan ‘Mind Boxing’ is a term used for a group of methodologies that unite the Mental and Physical into a combined new and superior whole.

This revolves around Chi Kung alongside that of martial techniques.

Although I have practised {minimally} the internal Kung Fu styles of Bagua Zhang, Xing Yi and I have also spent significant time on Ba Duan Jin Chi Kung.

I cannot say that I believe in the cultivation or application of Chi, but there is little doubt that something is going on that is of great value to a martial artist.

Something I find interesting is that many if not all of the early civilisations had some kind of energy work, but only the Chinese talk of it as being a physical power generator.

There are some subtle but intriguing variations in the Global Practice.

The Shaman of the Yaqui Indians of New Mexico advise keeping the hands closed to avoid energy spilling out, and then the Mongolian Shaman advises to keep or hands open so that the energy can come in.

Apart from this, the systems are very similar in thought and process to Chinese Chi Kung.

What do we make of this?

There is no doubt that we can ‘excite’ areas of our body by directing our attention to that place, relax our muscles with just our thoughts and send blood to our extremities by breathing, but I am pretty sure we could do that anyway, we just did not notice.

The big question is…

Does the value lay in the act of the practice or the product of the practice’?

Let me reiterate that I am not doubting that there is value.

Is it Intent or Intention?

The explosion of money in professional sport over the last century has also brought an equal explosion into sports-related research, and created the fields of ‘Sports Science’, and ‘Sports Medicine’.

And with it ‘Sports Psychologists’, Muscular-skeletal specialists, Physical therapists and an ever-increasing list of allied disciplines.

21st Century Sports Shamans?

There are several areas were the work of the ancient Shaman is verified by our modern-day Shaman.

But no-one can find verifiable existence of Chi.

As I say I am not doubting that there is something going on, but what?

I believe that the juncture is the Neuro Biometric Boundry that controls all Physical movement, we are essentially rewiring or even reprogramming our brain.

As close as the old sifus were they just did not know what we know today, they were correct in thinking that the work is always done on the inside from the inside

Never disengage the mind in training or you will only be training your brain to hide away from what you think you are training for.

There is much more to come from me on this topic, it is just so very difficult to articulate.

HOKKA HEY.

WHAT KIND OF DAY IS IT FOR YOU?
FIST LOGIC

FOOD FOR THOUGHT.

This does not mean that we cannot reach the same destination by a different path.

The ancient Kung Fu masters did not explain or talk about the organising physics of our universe anything like the same way we western educated people do.

But that does not mean that they did not understand it, understanding something in a different way, even a completely different way, is still understanding.

Qi, jing, Yi, Sung are just words, used to describe a feeling, framed from the perspective of a certain philosophy.

These words make perfect and easy sense to a person that follows this type of philosophy and can manifest in many positive ways.

If we are not living this philosophy naturally in every minute of our waking day these words are meaningless and their practice is pointless.

This does not mean that we cannot reach the same destination by a different path.

Every wisdom tradition from every part of our world covers the same ground,

Every culture posses this profound knowledge and explains it very differently.

But it is the same thing.

Consciousness.

But it needs to be our own consciousness an not one borrowed from some exotic location.

Chi, Jing, Yi and Sung only exist in China, to be expected if we wish to talk about, experience or realise Chi, Jing, Yi or Sung we can only do it in China.

This does not in any way imply that the experience behind these words/names does not exist for example, here in Australia, but it will only answer and come to us when we use its Australian name.

As always…

WORK ON YOUR WEAKNESS’ – PLAY TO YOUR STRENGTH.

WHAT KIND OF DAY IS IT FOR YOU?
FIST LOGIC

COMMONALITY.

Finding different ways to enrich and expand what we consider to be viable ‘Solo Training’ should be a priority.

Post-Lock-down I have had a few students from other schools taking some short term instruction with me due to Covid.

With visitors, I make a real effort to sew as little confusion as possible, especially as the way I teach and talk about Wing Chun is so very different than their Schools/Instructors.

There is an idea that progress is gained by listening, learning and understanding what we do.

Especially Forms.

But I think there is another way.

‘Deciding’ what we want to do.

I talk to guest students more from the context of ‘sport’ than Wing Chun.

Take any bat and ball sport or any throwing sport and look at it from the context of body movement.

There is a ‘commonality’ to these actions, typically referred to as fundamental motor skills.

If we recognise that ‘commonality’, embrace it, we are half-way to knowing how to play all other sports.

Including Kung Fu.

Cricket, tennis, baseball, shot putt, discus, they all share that ‘commonality’.

All of us have a great deal of personal experience with sports, even if we consider ourselves pretty ordinary.

Therefore we all have personal experience of at least one expression of that same commonality.

The changes to how we train, brought about by COVID, creates an environment where ‘Solo Training” is more important than ever if we wish to move forwards or simply maintain our current level.

Finding different ways to enrich and expand what we consider to be viable ‘Solo Training’ should be a priority.

Areas of interest are Physcho-neural programming, in the 1980s I had great results from the Sybervision Programs with Golf and Tennis.

Psychoneuromuscular theory.

Visualization technique.

Cognitive/Insight Learning.

Extrinsic feedback.

VIDEO.

As always…

TRAIN YOUR WEAKNESS’ – PLAY TO YOUR STRENGTH.

WHAT KIND OF DAY IS IT FOR YOU?
HOKKA HEY.
FIST LOGIC

SPINAL STABILISATION.

The Little Idea???

MOVING ON THE OUTSIDE, STILL ON THE INSIDE.

Where or what is the ‘LITTLE IDEA’.

Could it be that we are the ‘LITTLE IDEA’?

Any training is really about self-realisation.

The development of a new self, or at least a new vision that goes above and beyond us, sets new paradigms, attains new heights.

A self that is physically, mentally and emotionally on a different level.

A competent and capable self.

Trained and ready to face any challenge. 

Not just violence.

Wing Chun is a vehicle.

But like any vehicle on any long journey, we would do well to know how it works, how to fix it when it breaks down, to treat it with respect, so that it lasts us a life time.

On any journeys of significance, as we progress, we accumulate new knowledge and develop opinions.

Opinions that change as we gain further knowledge.

It is how we grow, move forward, transcend.

At this juncture, my opinion is this… 

The most important aspect of our training is to stabilise our spine.

 I believe that this is ‘THE NUCLEUS OF THE LITTLE IDEA’!

All of our training, all of our FORMS, our drills, our Chi Sau and whatever else we are involved in and around are nothing more than ‘stress tests’ to see if we can play them and maintain “a stable spine’.

If this is ‘THE NUCLEUS OF THE LITTLE IDEA’, what is ”THE LITTLE IDEA’?

It grows from using this Nucleus, thinking about this Nucleus, becoming this Nucleus.

MOVING ON THE OUTSIDE, STILL ON THE INSIDE.

Task number one.

HOW DO WE STABILISE THE SPINE?

There are numerous methods although ultimately they all boil down to Intra-abdominal Pressure {I.A.P.}

I am in no way a physical therapist, I am not going to advise you how to do this, but to be expected there is a ‘living shit tonne’ of videos on Youtube, by real doctors.

This is a decent one for getting the general gist of where and how to start.

Watch this and then surf the recommended video links on the right of the presentation and find one that makes sense to you.

Work on this alongside your ‘Crazy Horse’ exercises.

‘Crazy Horse’ is an awareness and conditioning exercise, in time we need to infuse I.A.P. into it.

This is not particularly difficult, but neither is it quick.

In the numerous styles that I have studied there has always been talk of breathing techniques, Buddhist breathing, Daoist breathing, belly breathing, diaphragmatic breathing, breathing into our feet the list is endless.

They are all on the right track but they are also wrong in so many ways.

It was not until about 5 years ago when I was seeing a rehab specialist for several weeks, at the ‘Pain Clinic in Liverpool Hospital’, that I was finally able to put all the pieces together

We always boast that what we do in Wing Chun is based on ‘normal, human body movement’ but few schools teach ‘normal, human body movement’.

They teach Wing Chun movement, which is so very rarely normal and only partly human.

I know that I am repeating myself here…

First, let’s be better humans.

As always…

WORK ON YOUR WEAKNES’S – PLAY TO YOUR STRENGTH.

WHAT KIND OF DAY IS IT FOR YOU?
HOKKA HEY!
FIST LOGIC

FORMS ARE NOTHING – UNTIL WE MAKE THEM SOMETHING!

FILL BEFORE EMPTYING.

“What have you learned from 50 years in the study of Chadō?

One of my favorite maxims/stories is from 16th century Japan.

The famous Tea Master, Sen no Rikyū, a National Living Treasure was retiring after over 50 years following Chadō, the way of Tea.

He was asked…

“What have you learned from 50 years in the study of Chadō?

He thought for a while, massaged his chin and replied…

‘Before Chadō Tea was just Tea, but as I became more involved in Chadō Tea became much more than Tea, finally, once I understood Chadō Tea was once again just Tea.

As always…

TRAIN YOUR WEAKNESS’ – WORK TO YOUR STRENGTH.

WHAT KIND OF DAY IS IT FOR YOU?
FIST LOGIC

2021 AND WE ARE OFF AGAIN.

NOTHING CHANGES IF NOTHING CHANGES.

Here we go again.

It is essentially meaningless to go over the same old ground in the expectation of finding something new.

We need a new IDEA.

We all have a shape, a posture or a setup.

We adopt them because we think they will aid us in what is upcoming.

In this way, every shape we adopt is a reflection of what we are thinking, the more we think about something the better and more effective our shapes become.

In this way when two people fight they pit one shape against another, one set of thinking against another.

To a very large extent we are always fighting our opponents thinking.

There are two ways to win this fight.

  1. Have a better, more effective way of thinking.
  2. Disrupt our opponents thinking so that it becomes ineffective.

If our shape is a result/reflection of our thinking then when we attack our opponent’s shape, we attack his thinking.

For me, this is at the heart of everything we do, especially Chi Sau.

I really do hope you disagree with this last set of IDEAS, at least in a minor way.

We need provocation to help us see what we really think.

HOKA HEY.

Have a great 2021, that hopefully will not be much of a test after 2020.

As always…

WORK ON YOUR WEAKNESS’ – PLAY TO YOUR STRENGTH.

WHAT KIND OF DAY IS IT FOR YOU?
FIST LOGIC

Where the F#$k is Rudolph when you need him?

Training can go in many directions, hard, soft, internal, external, practical, spiritual you name it.

A few weeks back I caught up with a friend, an ex-student, that has not trained with me in what seems like forever, it is about a decade, after playing around for half an hour he said…

 “Your wing Chun is nothing like it was when I trained with you”…

I have thought deep on this, and he is wrong.

My Wing Chun is the same…

It is Wing Chun.

Wing Chun is always just Wing Chun.

Training can go in many directions, hard, soft, internal, external, practical, spiritual you name it.

But that is just training.

Training is not fighting.

No matter how we train…

When it is “go” time…

It is “go” time.

If for any reason this does not make sense…

Stay out of trouble over Christmas and the New Year.

TRAIN YOUR WEAKNESS’ – WORK TO YOUR STRENGTH.

SAY NO TO EXTRA PUDDING.

WHAT KIND OF DAY IS IT FOR YOU?
FIST LOGIC

IMAGINATION – THE NEW FRONTIER.

ME, MYSELF AND “I”.

“Because what ever word we choose is just a made up word for an imaginary event that we only think is happening”.

Imagination is how we humans interact with the universe around us.

How we see it.

Not as it is.

But as something it is not.

Something that we can make sense of, work with.

This does not make it “REAL” in any sense of the word, but it does make it a very valuable mental method.

When teaching my IDEA of “Crazy Horse” I encourage my guys to give their imagination free reign.

I put it to them that what we are doing when we engage our imagination is creating a language that both our mind and our body can use to communicate with each other.

Creating what I refer to as “feeling pictures”, or “screenshots” of our inner working.

One imagining I like to use is to think that we have a hydraulic pump deep in our pelvis.

This pump sends pressurised water down our legs, up our spine, along our shoulders and into the arms and hands until we are full and can even feel our skin bulging as the water tries to exit through our fingers and toes.

Most students achieve this easily and sometimes ask….

“Is this Chi/Nim Lik/Nim Tao/Kundalini”?

I answer…

“It can be if you wish it to be”.

“Because what ever word we choose is just a made up word for an imaginary event that we only think is happening”.

Some people take umbridge with me for saying that Chi, or Nim Lik, or Nim Tao, or Kundalini are only imaginary, they feel I am being dissmissive.

I am not.

I do not see any problem with using our imagination.

I am repeating myself here but Imagination is how we humans interact with the universe around us.

We all deeply believe that when we look out of a window and see BLUE skies, GREEN trees, RED cars on BLACK roads it is because they are real.

And I am the first to agree that not only do I do this but that this is a universal consensus.

The fact that we all agree, all think and perhaps even see the same thing does not make it REAL.

Not even close.

We do not LOOK OUT of windows, we do not LOOK at anything, our eyes are more akin to cameras than scanners, we open the lens and the view flows IN.

We only IMAGINE that we look out.

In our universe there is no colour, there is only different wavelengths of electro-magnetic energy, we interpret these different wavelengths to represent different colours.

Except of course for the “Clour-blind” in our society.

All and any interpretation of any subject is just us using our IMAGINATION.

What has all this got to do with teaching and studying Wing Chun?

When people from the C.S.T. lineage like Sifu John Kaufman talk about Nim Lik and Nim Tao, when people from the Robert Chu lineage like Alan Orr talk about the 7 Bows and linking/de-linking or when I talk about putting on our Crazy Horse and staying in the Goldilocks Zone we are using a different imaginary language to talk about the same thing.

The Ghost in the Machine if you wish.

Underneath this language, our bodies are doing or at least attempting to achieve the same objective.

That is the reality of what we are doing and as such is the true work.

If we take the Kung Fu and Spirituality away completely, what is our body ‘actually’ doing when we ask it to link and de-link, to bend one of the 7 bows, raise up Nim Lik or engage Nim Tao, stay in the Goldilocks Zone or put on our Crazy Horse?

Whatever we think that is we would benefit from exploring in that direction.

Apart from any other considerations this thing is measurable, observable and capable of being experienced/felt by a person other than ourselves.

It is REALITY and not IMAGINATION.

Do I know what lies beneath the imaginary language I create, beneath my Crazy Horse and my Goldilocks Zone?

I believe I do.

But I could just be imagining it.

As always…

WORK ON YOUR WEAKNESS – PLAY TO YOUR STRENGTH.

WHAT KIND OF DAY IS IT FOR YOU?

FIST LOGIC

PREAMBLE TO A FUTURE CONVERSATION.

The usual suspects line up.

At the heart of Wing Chun, there is a small idea.

 There ‘really’ is.

 Many talk the talk, but it is only once we understand everything that we realise it was a small idea all along.

Can we teach this small idea from the outset?

Or do we all first need to spend 10 years amassing a fair whack of useless knowledge and then spend another 10 years getting rid of most of it.

As a starter we should stop telling tales, fairie stories that pretend to be historically factual but are little more than primitive self-advertising.

The usual suspects line up.

Wing Chun was created by a woman, a nun, that observed a crane and a snake fighting.

Wing Chun was named after a young girl, a dumpling seller that fought and beat a local warlord.

Biu Gee is only taught to students that have proven their fealty by training with the one school for 10 or 15 years.

Biu Gee is not taught to outsiders because it contains all of our emergency techniques.

The Wing Chun weapons are genuine “Martial Weapons”.

These are all tales Wing Chun tells and none of them true.

AS ALWAYS…

WORK ON YOUR WEAKNESS’ – PLAY TO YOUR STRENGTH.

WHAT KIND OF DAY IS IT FOR YOU?