What is the worth of "history"?

August 2005

Volume 8 Issue 8

Aibudo Kanji
Picture of Shihan

advanced out of history.  It's not much different than for us to still be living in caves and eating our food raw.  It seemed good enough for the cavemen, so it must still be good today.  If you believe that, then you better admit yourself into a good mental hospital.  If you weren't around to live history, then you best study it or you will be destined to repeat it.  History is just that.  It's what we came from.  Within the martial arts, we must study our history and develop defenses to work with it and against it, at the same time.  The 1970's martial arts technologies weren't much different than they were 100's of years ago and some "professional" martial artists are still performing them today.  How do you defend yourself with these world wide, known and studied, old movements and strategies.  It would be like our military still performing tactics of the Civil War.  Every countries militaries doing the same thing, time after time after time.  No surprises, just the expected.  That's the reason we would call it a "war".  We don't want you to be in a "war" in the defense of yourself or others.  You should be knowledgeable of what's been in the past and currently being introduced, so that you may work around your opponent and not "bang heads" with them.  Without knowledge of the past and lack of drive to become better, you are like the caveman going up against an orbiting laser.  The axiom that states, "He who hesitates, is lunch", couldn't be more true.  If you hesitate from studying techniques of the past, you will not have the knowledge necessary to work around them.  Even with the knowledge, you still must have the dedication and desire to improve.  Bruce Lee was looked down on for looking to the future and was ridiculed for it.  Yet for

it, he had no competition.  When what you are presently doing, no longer works in today's world, where is the problem?  Without using the knowledge of history to improve from, you are destined to repeat and continue with it.  You would have no comparison of failures to advance from.  Still today there are "professional" martial artists who are very knowledgeable of the past and refuse to advance from it.  They are so comfortable in their own little world of, "same kind practitioners" that they're stagnated.  It's as if they would rather stumble around in the dark, than turn on a flashlight.  If the starlight was good enough in the past, then it should be good enough for today.  Without the study of the "Wind Element", you are just like the idiot refusing to use the flashlight.  As most of you should now know, without the study of other martial arts systems, self-defense programs, military strategies, psychology and history, you are going to be a modern day "loser".  The only statements within your "combat" conversations will be, how bad you were beat up, how quick you were knocked our or how good your opponent was.  If that is what you desire to be your "history", then ignore it and continue to repeat it.  Continue with the same failures, time after time and  never approach success.  Being content with where you are is self-defeating.  Looking at everyone else as being more proficient than you and accepting it as, "that's just the way it's supposed to be", is mentally unhealthy.  You have to learn how to defeat the bully, rather than being the continuing target of them.  Studying your opponent's early history and what they are doing today will help prepare you for whatever may come your way.  Little to be surprised about.

History, why study it?

     It's been said that, not to be knowledgeable of history is to repeat it, or something like that.  A true martial arts system is something along the lines of an all-around education.  We didn't go to school and only learn how read, or how to do math, or……..  An all-around education is the study of many things, all at the same time.  Within Aibudo, in one way or another, we work with body mechanics, breathing, balance, physical conditioning, weapons, the nervous system, psychology, perseverance  and history.  Most everyone understands the first in the list, but what does history have to do with self-defense?  Having knowledge of past history is what is going to help protect you in the future.  Failure to work with the knowledge of history, will retard your success today.  I made a comment, the other day, about receiving a news-letter from a "martial arts" organization.  Within the news-letter was information about an upcoming seminar.  They were promoting the fact that two of the instructors are well known martial artists who were going to be present.  If you weren't aware that this news-letter was just written this month, by the pictures, you would surmise, that it was written in the 1970's. The posturing by these "expert" martial artists hasn't changed since that time frame.  The posturing is sport karate, with a martial arts insinuation.  It was noted that the first technique you should execute is a front facing side-kick.  Without taking my word for it, just watch one UFC match and see how worthy that is!  Why would these long-time "professional " martial artists still be functioning with 1970 technology?  I won't say the answer is simple, but the obvious is that they haven't