"The Author, it must be remembered, writes from his own standpoint!"
My personal "Interpretive" Lens!

"One thing has always been true: That book ... or ... that person who can give me an idea or a new slant on an old idea is my friend." - Louis L'Amour

"Providing a first step on a path to self-reflection." - C. E. James

"Read not to contradict and confute; nor to believe and take for granted; nor to find talk and discourse; but to weigh and consider..." - Francis Bacon

"What is true today may be reevaluated as false not long after. Judgements are frequently based upon a set of "temporary" circumstances surrounding them. Conflicting ideologies can exist simultaneously. Antagonistic dualities are complementary aspects of a unified whole: are seen as mutually dependent mirror images of each other." - Nahum Stiskin

Warning, Caveat and Note: The postings on this blog are my interpretation of readings, studies and experiences therefore errors and omissions are mine and mine alone. The content surrounding the extracts of books, see bibliography on this blog site, are also mine and mine alone therefore errors and omissions are also mine and mine alone and therefore why I highly recommended one read, study, research and fact find the material for clarity. My effort here is self-clarity toward a fuller understanding of the subject matter. See the bibliography for information on the books.

Note: I will endevor to provide a bibliography and italicize any direct quotes from the materials I use for this blog. If there are mistakes, errors, and/or omissions, I take full responsibility for them as they are mine and mine alone. If you find any mistakes, errors, and/or omissions please comment and let me know along with the correct information and/or sources.

Kenpo Gokui

The lines of the ken-po goku-i are set from an atomistic aspect simply because it is the manner in which the brain learns. Its nature is completely holistic and like the I Ching must be in a form that promotes learning and understanding so a person can see, hear and grasp the nature of a holistic system. The gokui is a method to teach us how to be holistic. Its terseness is the best that can be done to convey its holistic meaning.

A person's heart is the same as Heaven and Earth while the blood circulating is similar to the Sun and Moon yet the manner of drinking and spitting is either soft or hard while a person's unbalance is the same as a weight and the body should be able to change direction at any time as the time to strike is when the opportunity presents itself and both the eyes must see all sides as the ears must listen in all directions while the mind must grasp all the tactual data not seen on all sides and not heard in any direction.

A person’s heart is the same as Heaven and Earth while circulatory system is similar to the cycles of the moon and sun yet the breathing methods are either hard or soft while one’s posture should allow one to advance, retreat, engage, and disengage as the body should be able to act in accordance with time and change so that one must enter a state of emptiness (mushin/zanshin) allowing the eyes must see all sides and the ears should listen in all directions while the mind must grasp all the tactual data not seen on all sides and not heard in any direction. - My rendition per translation from Andy Sloane Sensei.

Master Zeng said, "Am I preaching what I have not practiced myself?"

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Jiki-shin or "Direct Mind"

Jiki-shin means approximately that we control our minds so that we allow no stray thoughts or emotions to intrude so that our present moment mind can respond to stimuli without any mental hindrances. This is being in the "Now" or the present moment with out allowing intrusions of either past or future thoughts so that the mind can deal with present moment situations most efficiently.

Dave Lowry in "The Essence of Budo: A Practitioner's Guide to Understanding the Japanese Martial Ways" provides that "Isshin" can mean "one mind or unified mind" which seems to equate to this present moment ability referred to here as "Jiki-shin." The one-mind/unified-mind  is "not distracted" by anything other than the present moment (now) that is.

We can then add in "Zanshin" which is to remain alert through the entire situation, the instinct before action that warns us to the action itself and then to remaining aware/alert past the end of the action just in the event that something hidden from our perceptions and instincts rears its ugly head to cause another successive action.

This is all under the heading of "focus." Training to fight in this manner is unique and takes a special kind of teacher/mentor. Our focus must allow us to achieve efficiency above and beyond the effects of the adrenaline dump and the other stress related things that the body and mind dump on us in high stress and possibly violent situations.

This brings up the ken-po goku-i specifically the last two "tomes" which express an ability to "see" all sides and "hear" in all directions. Under the stresses of a fight or violent situation our ability to "see" and "hear" are affected. We train to achieve control over the mind and thus the body so that the diminishing of both sight and hearing are lessened so we can maximize our use of those senses. Training should allow us to lessen the human bodily distortions that occur due to the psychological and physical responses to stress or stressful situations.

This brings up mental training, which is the most critical aspect of the fighting arts if you encounter violent actions, which means overcoming nature's natural instinct in dangerous situations to first "flee or RUN" from the danger and allow us to fight instead.

When we first sense some dangerous situation most will instinctively pull back, open the eyes wide, take a quick deep inhalation and put up our arms for protection. The pulling back is instinctually starting the "fleeing" response. To me this means if we failed to achieve the first self defense technique, i.e. to avoid it all together, then we need to have the ability to see and/or hear so we can instantly determine if fleeing is available. If not, we "act accordingly" to achieve space/interval so we can then "flee the scene" and find protection from the danger.

Jiki-shin, to me as my training and practice, means not just a unified/one mind but a mind that can distinguish danger from safety in every day activities but in the event of danger sensing it allows me to either flee quickly or create an interval/space so that fleeing is available. Avoidance/Fleeing/Action which should be taught/trained/practiced in the arts when emphasizing self defense.

Lowry, Dave. "The Essence of Budo: A Practitioner's Guide to Understanding the Japanese Martial Ways." Boston & London, Shambhala Publications. 2010.

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