How to Define a Martial Science
The first time I ever heard the martial arts referred to as a science was with the saying that ‘Boxing is the Sweet Science.’
Interesting, Boxing, and not Karate or Judo or Kung Fu, even those have been around a long while. Took this writer some time to figure this out.
Boxing is simple, there are only a couple of things you can do. With the proviso, of course, that shadings and tweakings can be endless, boxing is just punch and dodge, and this makes it very easy to understand.
Karate, or Kung Fu, or any of the eastern methods tend to be complex, and the truth here is that complex is more difficult to understand than simple.
That said, the martial arts of the east, be they taekwondo or aikido or whatever, begin with the laborious memorization of endless random tricks.
Eventually, and we could be talking years or even decades, intuition kicks in. At that point boxing takes a second seat, as the simplicity of punching vs kicks and elbows and throws and whatever becomes far more advantageous in a fight.
To really understand the ramifications, however, we need to look at the definition for the word ‘science.’
Science is the intellectual and practical study of the structure and behavior of the physical world through observation and experiment.
In other words, you look at the world until you understand whatever the sequencing of events is that occurs naturally.
The key here is found in the root of the word science. Science means ‘knowledge’ in the Latin, and it refers to testable explanations and predictions about reality.
The conclusion must be that the martial arts are not a science. Karate, Jujitsu, whatever…they are not arranged in order, and thus people respond to instruction in such arts in a wildly varying way: some quit, some become expert, or master, and there is a sweeping middle ground.
Thus, they do not have uniform results, and can only be considered an art, and not a science.
If you do want to make your martial art into a science, if you want to experience the logic of correctly arranged martial arts forms and techniques, you need to look to Matrixing. A good example of this would be in Matrixing Kenpo Book One: The Truth of History. Over fifty techniques analyzed scientifically, and the result is a kenpo that is far easier to learn, far easier to use, and just plain makes sense.