FIST LOGIC

HERE IS AN IDEA.

Today’s Wing Chun is a Western Martial Art that may benefit from being looked at through Western thinking.

PODCAST. https://anchor.fm/derek-john-evans/episodes/HERE-IS-AN-IDEA-ev6ai2

In Cantonese the Sil Lim Tao translates to ‘The Way Of The Little Idea’

It is a method for experiencing and exploring the ‘Little Idea’.

It is not the ‘Little Idea’.

Think about that for a moment.

It is not the ‘Little Idea’.

Eastern-thinking, philosophy, is very different from Western-thinking, philosophy.

When considering the Sil Lim Tao would we do well to consider the parable of “The finger pointing at the Moon”?

When speaking of the Sil Lim Tao would we do well to consider the Dao de Ching that states “The way that can be spoken of is not the true way“?

When practising Sil Lim Tao would we do well to consider “PU”, “the uncarved block,” a state of pure potential which is the primordial condition of the mind before the arising of experience?

This would be how to engage the Sil Lim Tao by way of Eastern thought.

In 2021, there are more Western-educated Wing Chun students than there are Eastern-educated Wing Chun students.

Today’s Wing Chun is a Western Martial Art that may benefit from being looked at through Western thinking.

I have always held the opinion that the Sil Lim Tao is a window and not a mirror, as with all windows, there are many ways of looking through it.

For example, look up, look down, look left, look right, look straight ahead.

Only a fool would ignore this and use the window just to study their reflection.

Especially hour after hour, week after week, year in year out as is often the practice.

If we choose to engage some Western thinking to observe the Sil Lim Tao where should we start?

“If I had an hour to solve a problem I’d spend 55 minutes thinking about the problem and five minutes thinking about solutions.” Albert Einstein.

The Sil Lim Tao is a lesson, not a teacher.

“Losing an illusion makes you wiser than finding a truth”. Karl Ludwig Börne

Learn the Form, then forget the Form.

“Nothing is more dangerous than an idea when it is the only one you have”.  Emile Chartier

Especially when it is a ‘Little Idea’.

But with the proliferation of so many Wing Chun Movies, yes there is another on the way and from what shorts I have seen it is even sadder and sillier than Ip Man 3, perhaps this bloke nailed it.

“Right now it’s only a notion, but I think I can get the money to make it into a concept, and later turn it into an idea.”  Woody Allen.

HOKKA HEY.

WHAT KIND OF DAY IS IT?
FIST LOGIC

STRIKING.

Our 200-kilo punch to the face of our attacker becomes a 200-kilo headbutt to our hand.

It is not possible to win a violent encounter by defence alone, somewhere-sometime we must hit the opponent and deliver as much Force as we can.

The combination of Wing Chun Body Mechanics and ‘Fist Logic’ can deliver astonishingly heavy blows with very little effort.

Force is a two -way street, as Sifu Issac pointed out…

…to every action, there is a reaction of the same magnitude in the opposite direction…

Our 200-kilo punch to the face of our attacker becomes a 200-kilo headbutt to our hand.

Understanding the correct mechanics of our strikes can not only allow us to impart devastating blows but can also save us from injury.

Even if we do not suffer an injury from our incorrect Form we will leak power at every link in the kinetic chain and fail to encourage the Bad Guy to “cease and desist”.

It is beneficial for all of us, irrespective of our experience to stay in touch with the absolute basics of how to make a fist, and what it takes to deliver force through a strike.

Training for power is dubious at best, the 200-kilo punch we drop on the pads every night at training may not even land on the opponent if we do not move effectively.

Should we be able to land our strike it must land plumb to achieve its weight exchange.

Landing the strike we want on the target we want is a very difficult task, usually because the Bad Guy has his own agenda of which we know nothing.

Let’s just focus on what we can influence in real time.

Below is some random footage from training, putting words into action.

Do not be deceived by the apparent lack of effort by George, this is a big, highly skilled man moving correctly and making big circles.

If you know what to look for there is no recoil, no return force after the strike, it was a complete transference of momentum.

The end product was tasty.

The end product was Wing Chun.

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

FIST LOGIC

THE MAN AND THE PLAN.

To survive an emergency we do not need special skills, we just need a plan and the courage to follow it.

To get the most from our training, for it to be fit for purpose so to say, we must have some IDEA of what ‘that purpose’ may be.

Unfortunately for anyone involved in Martial Art training violence does not come in a ‘One Size Fits All ‘ variant.

Different situations will throw up different problems and those different problems will need different solutions.

What type of situation do we think we will be in when we call upon our training?

If your environment is a large group environment such as being at school. serving in the military or even working in construction ‘pecking order fights’ could be your main concern.

If you play a full-contact sport it could be a boil over that erupts.

Will it be one on one, multiple attackers or surprise random violence.

Will it be a confined space or an open area?

We all have differing IDEAS as to where the danger lies, for instance living in the U.K. through the 1970s when Soccer Hooliganism was at its peak young people avoided going anywhere on their own if they could manage it.

As a result, when trouble happened it was often seen coming from some distance away and it was LARGE so understanding how to deal with multiple attackers was far more valuable than a great ground game.

Each of us understands our immediate environment and even if it is not at the forefront of our thinking we know where the Dragons are

Surviving an unexpected violent attack will be one of the most harrowing things we will ever endure, going in with no idea how to get out, or at least how to begin to get out, is a recipe for failure.

Having even the vaguest of Blueprints will give us a place to start from, a place to build from.

Although no two violent situations are ever the same, controlling the immediate environment and knowing our capabilities can bring them into the same Ball-park.

Do we attack our attacker?
Do we defend ourselves and wait for an opening.
Do we stand and fight?
Do we look for an opening and then retreat?

How we answer these questions will pretty much shape the purpose of our training.

All training will work if you know where and when to use it.


To survive an emergency we do not need special skills, we just need a plan and the courage to follow it.

Self Defence is only needed once Self Protection has Failed.

HOKKA HEY

WHAT KIND OF DAY IS IT FOR YOU?
FIST LOGIC

PLATEAUS.

The old map has been shattered and the discomfort comes from the delay in the delivery of the new map.

I was working with William, one of my students, this evening, he has been with me for several years and his progress makes me think that I might just be a decent teacher.

He is at the Chum Kiu – Bill Gee cusp.

However, he finds himself frustrated, not making any significant progress, finding everything foggy, confusing.

The dreaded PLATEAU.

Not just a normal Plateau, but the ‘Beast’, the mother of all Plateaus that seems to stretch beyond every horizon.

In the fiercely formated Japanese Arts, this stage is called ‘Brown Belt’.

We have all been there.

Not everyone came home.

For many, a Plateau is where ‘that thing they love’ starts to lose its magic and within a year or so they have walked away.

This stinks of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.

A Plateau, as uncomfortable as they are, is an indication of an incoming paradigm shift.

A lightbulb moment.

The old map has been shattered and the discomfort comes from the delay in the delivery of the new map.

Sometimes, only sometimes, but for sure this time, the best course of action is inaction.

 Settle in, settle down, be still and let the universe change around you.

Instead of thinking that somehow we can change the universe.

You all know my love of cheesy maxims…

“You cannot push the river”.

During the course of the evening, the training prompted William to ask…

“Do you think that my mindset is attack influenced or defence influenced, which one works best”?

This is a great question that we should all address.

But address it just like Frank, in our own way.

There are always and only personal answers to these type of questions.

My ‘two bobs’ worth was that the appropriate answer will present itself if we treat our opponent with respect.

If we respect our opponents’ ability to hurt us then it is a no-brainer that we initially adopt a defence influenced mindset.

If it turns out that we have overestimated our opponent, perhaps paid them too much respect, we can simply change our opinion and fix the problem.

If we have no respect for our opponent it becomes a game of chance, 50/50, this is and never has been the Wing Chun Way.

The challenge that I see a great many Wing Chun people struggling with is understanding exactly what a ‘Counter-Attacking’ mindset IS.

If we do not understand it how can we be expected to adopt it?

Who we are never changes through our whole life time.


Who we think we are changes every Day!

WHAT KIND OF DAY IS IT FOR YOU?
FIST LOGIC

BRINGING IT HOME.

‘if we are initiating the action we are attacking if we are responding to an opponent’s action then we are defending’…

Having the ability to transfer the training into a way of doing the work is frustratingly completely different and separate from both the training and the work!

This is a task that can be easy to overlook as there is a tendency to think that the training is the work.

The majority of the training we do is focused on defence, for very good reasons.

Reasons that have a great deal more to do more to do with developing confidence than developing capability.

This is the best reason.

‘Without the confidence of thinking we can defend against a hit we will hesitate to engage the Bad Guy’.

Construct – examine – deconstruct – examine – reconstruct – examine.

Rinse and repeat.

Below are a couple of Video take-aways from recent training sessions, they are a little long winded as is the way with live training, it is more important that the information gets accross than it is that it sounds cool and crisp, this is ‘fly on the wall’ video.

There are some important ideas here if you can grasp them.

This is just everyday training, no one is trying to show off or even do their best, it is just a normal evening, before thinking poorly of anyone be aware that you would look just like this.

One important aspect to spend some time thinking about is…

‘if we are initiating the action we are attacking if we are responding to an opponent’s action then we are defending’…

What does this mean?

Does it change your approach?

As with all of our training how we relate to what we are being shown and how we can connect that to the work is the main difference between being capable and effective or not being capable and effective.

Context is so important.

Try to view everything that we are doing in these Vids as an aspect of Chi Sau or as an expression of our FORMS, in this way we are at least attempting to connect the training to the work.

We will be working on this approach for at least the next 6 weeks, if anything is being shown here that you want me to expand upon mention it when you come in for training.

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

PUNCHING?

‘Know that life is not fair, and you will fail often’.

Admiral William H. McRaven

April is focusing on punching.

Let’s get started.

How many punches are there in the Wing Chun System?

If you answered anything other than one, you are mistaking the training for the work.

Something we must align ourselves with is that punching is not physical, it is emotional, it is a desire.

In Wing Chun, the punch comes from the heart’ says the Kuen Kuit, this is not a G.P.S. thing, not a location, position or physical place.

This is being – Body Being.

 Think it – feel it – be it.

If a punch fails it was not because of positioning or technique but because of a lack of emotional commitment.

Understanding this…

…and understanding that this is also true for the ‘Bad Guy’ and that is why when we attack we attack their thinking and not their body, but this is for another post…

…understanding this takes our actions off of the dance floor and into reality.

The ONLY requirement of a punch is that it lands on the target flush in a direct line from where it came from to where it lands.

Which of course is the ‘Textbook’ explanation of the Wing Chun Punch.

Everything else, the footwork, the arm shape, the positioning even the strategies are just how we navigate the environment we find our selves in.

 Think it – feel it – be it.

When we arrive at that place in our training where we see and truly understand that all and any movement is about free access to the target we see how simple Wing Chun is.

I watched an amazing presentation by a U.S.Navy Sea, Admiral William H. McRaven talking to a new crop of Navy Seals, one truly amazing IDEa was that the first, and most important thing you do is make the bed.

Never leave the house if your bed is not made up, tidy and ready to use on your return.

Think about that and what it means to you.

Before you decide that I am having a Seniors moment watch it now from the link.

Know that life is not fair, and you will fail often’… Admiral William H. McRaven.

How do we describe our punch to ourselves?

What do we want this punch to do?

This is an Is our bed made? type of question.

This should be the departure point for all of our training.

THE WING CHUN PUNCH COMES FROM THE HEART.

WHEN YOU UNDERSTAND EVERYTHING, THINGS ARE JUST THE WAY THEY ARE.

WHEN YOU UNDERSTAND NOTHING, THINGS ARE JUST THE WAY THEY ARE.

HOKKA HEY

WHAT KIND OF DAY IS IT FOR YOU?

FIST LOGIC

THE GREAT LEAP FORWARD.

JACK OR JACQUELINE?

No matter what you think you are seeing in the training video, and it is only a training video, do not doubt that all three of these men could end you instantly.

I am a Wing Chun believer, a true believer, in my own way a genuine champion, but we really should be honest, when it comes to being prepared for that dark day our training sucks!

As an Instructor and {very} long term student I understand and realise that what we are doing is not what we hope to learn.

This is by far the most problematic aspect of the work.

If we can resolve this issue we are truly golden.

The snippet of this mornings training, 03/03/2021, is with very senior Wing Chun players, my three students are all Junior Masters in their own right.

Why are they Junior Masters?

Because they choose to still have a master instead of running their own school.

If they wished it they could do it without breaking sweat.

But we are all people.

No matter what you think you are seeing in the training video, and it is only a training video, do not doubt that all three of these men could end you instantly.

I know they can do this because it is the thing I taught them to do, and they are great students.

It is just training, we are trying perhaps odd IDEAS, doing odd shit, seeing what WE can make work.

IF Wing Chun is normal human body movement why do we struggle?

VIDEO

If you do not have the vision to see what is happening here, save it for later, this is all of us trying to be the thing we think is Wing Chun.

The most important attribute for a Martial Artist to develop is honesty.

‘Why am I trying to use this skill’?

WHEN YO UNDERSTAND….

HOKKA HEY

WHAT KIND OF DAY IS IT FOR YOU?
FIST LOGIC

GET A VIDEO RECORD OF YOUR PRIVATE LESSON.

BE YOUR OWN ACTION HERO.

But the next day it is just a head full of Wing Chun Soup.

Something I offer that can be a great help to your understanding is that I Video Record a Private lesson were we go over any specific areas that you wish to work on.

If you wish to go deep into a Form.

If you wish to go deep into Chi Sau.

If you wish to go deep into Body Structure, or Body Being.

If you wish to go deep into Fist Logic.

If you wish to experience and understand Mind boxing.

Going deep into any subject usually results in receiving way too much information to be effectively retained.

At the end of the session there is excitement about how much new stuff has been covered.

But the next day it is just a head full of Wing Chun Soup.

Having the video of your lesson on a U.S.B. means that you can revisit it at any time, in fact numerous times.

This is not a free service, it takes time to produce the Video, but it is not expensive.

I have just provided Kunal with almost 1 hour of edited study, here is a taste.

VIDEO

If this sounds like a good idea talk to me today.

TWO THINGS TO BE AWARE OF…

  1. We work on anything that YOU wish to work on.

2. I am “Closer Than Hong Kong”

WHEN YOU UNDERSTAND, THINGS ARE JUST THE WAY THEY ARE.

WHEN YOU DO NOT UNDERSTAND, THINGS ARE JUST THE WAY THEY ARE.

HOKKA HEY

WHAT KIND OF DAY IS IT FOR YOU?
FIST LOGIC

CONNECTING TO NATURAL HUMAN BODY MOVEMENT

A General Theory of Fighting Arts becomes grounded in Human Movement and not, as it so often is, ‘Esoteric Ideology’.

 The General Theory of Fighting Arts is a term widely used to try to get students to identify the mutual movements of all martial styles, and the alignment with most dynamic sports.

One thing we have all been told, and if we are talking to beginners or non Wing Chun people often repeat is that ‘Wing Chun movement is based on normal human body movement’.

I do not think that students give enough credence to this statement, that ‘Wing Chun movement is based on normal human body movement’.

It gets treated as if it is just some sort of cagey advertising spin just as many Instructors still claim that Wing Chun was invented by a woman, a device to encourage smaller, less athletic men to take up Wing Chun instead of a rival code.

But Wing Chun IS based on normal human body movements.

If we approach the work from this perspective and look at what is presented and how it is presented, we see a pattern emerge, that in the progression of the FORMS, as we move from the first Form to Chum Kiu and then Biu Gee, this progression is nothing more than the introduction of more complex movement for people not familiar with this way of moving.

This approach more than likely had merit back in 1860s Foshan but today, due to the average sporting curriculum of most western schools every 12-year-old child is familiar with these moves.

A very large proportion of what is introduced through the Forms is simply unnecessary, at least from the point of view of controlling our body.

Do not get me wrong, the FORMS are needed for other reasons so I am not suggesting abandonment.

But we can easily be moving at a level that is needed for any aspect of the work be it the Dummy, the Pole or the Knives if we put more practice and focus into moving better as a Human.

Take any movement or action from any sport, especially a throwing or bat and ball sport, and you will find the moves somewhere in the Form.

 A General Theory of Fighting Arts becomes grounded in Human Movement and not, as it so often is, ‘Esoteric Ideology’.

This week spend some quality time exploring the similarities between Martial Movement, Sports and Dancing, once you see how they amalgamate, consolidate and integrate FORMS become a secondary consideration. 

IMAGINE, MANIFEST AND WORK ON THE IDEA OF THE FRAME.

And while you a re at it put some minutes into the MAGNIFICENT SEVEN.

Here they are, and here is a recap.

WHEN YOU UNDERSTAND, THINGS ARE JUST THE WAY THEY ARE.

WHEN YOU DO NOT UNDERSTAND, THINGS ARE JUST THE WAY THEY ARE.

HOKKA HEY

WHAT KIND OF DAY IS IT FOR YOU?
FIST LOGIC

FABRICATING THE FRAME.

Simplification of information requires that at some point we need to be overcomplicated and moderately confused.

We all know that Wing Chun is a concept based Martial Art that is based around the Sil Lim Tao.

The ‘small thought or little idea’.

But what exactly is that?

After 30 years of training, I have concluded that the Sil Lim Tao as a concept is a Chinese equivalent of the ‘Law of Parsimony’.

Simplification of information requires that at some point we need to be overcomplicated and moderately confused.

We better get started is all I can say.

The IDEA of the ‘FRAME’ as a virtual reality 3-dimensional construct that we constantly use as our method of representing points in a space of given dimensions by internal physical coordinates. may sound a bit whacky at first but it is simple, quite elegant and readily accessible to anyone with any imagination.

Over the coming weeks I will attempt to expand and simplify the whole IDEA of building and working from the FRAME as opposed to using more common, physical or mechanical means.

This methodology is central not only to Wing Chun but to most other Martial Arts, all sport or any form of movement technology that is intended to be functional such as dance or acrobatics.

HOKKA HEY

WHAT KIND OF DAY IS IT FOR YOU?