Tag Archives: karate

Martial Arts as a Belief System

Newsletter 978

Why Martial Arts Changed

That the martial arts have changed is obvious.
They have changed in many ways.
Arts have intermixed,
forms are looked down upon,
people want more reality in their sparring,
and so on.

For me the change is drastic,
and I always focus on a single aspect
or characteristic of the martial arts.
I think it is the real reason
for the decline of martial arts.

When I began training we didn’t know anything.
Nobody knew karate,
or any of the other martial arts,
it was all new,
and nobody knew anything.

We were told stories.
The fellow who could hold onto a horse’s tail
and run as fast as the horse.
The fellow who could catch a samurai sword
and snap it with his palms.
Catching arrows with the bare hand.
Breaking rocks with a single chop.
And so on.

Now,
we didn’t know if these stories were true,
we simply believed
because we knew no better.
And,
as time went on,
some of the stories were bogus,
and some…were true.

What I noticed
as time went on
was that less and less
had people heard these stories.
Less and less
they tried to do the tricks in these stories.
More and more they fell to fighting,
and stopped being able to catch an opponent mid technique
and do what they wanted.

In short,
people stopped believing.
And stopped striving for those mystical feats,
stopped developing mystical abilities.

Why?

Because of the people who trained before,
who had no success in achieving mystical ability
and so denounced it.

I’ve heard people say karate punches are inferior.
And they tout the endless boxing drills
as superior to karate.
Yet I have never seen a boxer
thrust a finger through a board and leave a hole.
I have seen a karate man do that.

I’ve heard people say karate blocks don’t work in a real fight.
Yet I have seen a fellow
break a leg bone,
break it in two places,
with a simple low block.

I’ve had people say chi doesn’t exist,
it is a trick.
Check out the video here…
http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/4c-matrixing-chi-power/
Or simply google such things as ’chi power.’

Here is the point.
In the beginning we didn’t know better,
so we believed that tales
just like a bunch of goofy kids.
Most couldn’t figure out how to do those cool sounding tricks.
But a few could.

But the kids of today listen to the trash talk
and they never hear of the ‘chi tricks,’
they never hear about people dehorning and killing bulls
with a single chop.

They listen to the fellows who failed,
and don’t seek out the ones who succeeded.

It seems that the fellows who couldn’t succeed,
are happy to shout their failure to the world,
and denounce the arts they failed in,
instead of figuring out the tricks
and practicing until they could succeed.

And the fellows who succeed,
they are self satisfied
and they have no reason to shout to the world.
Humility, you know.

I tell you this:
the most important element
in your success or failure
is going to be your ability to believe.
To believe that you can do.
To believe some of those old fables.
And to train in a manner
so that your belief is made stronger.

Believe.

Have a great and believable work out!
Al

Here’s that link again…

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/4c-matrixing-chi-power/

A WIN!

…you’ve changed the way I approach the arts that I love. 2018 marks my 40th year as a martial artist, and I believe that what you do is so important to us true believers. Please remember that innovation is always going to be violently resisted initially. What you do is absolutely logical, and it’s impossible for any sane man to argue with logic. Press on with pride brother. You ARE making history and a legacy. Best wishes and thanks ~ Sean

“The doubters said, ‘Man can not fly,’
The doers said, ‘Maybe, but we’ll try,’
And finally soared In the morning glow
While non-believers Watched from below.”
– Bruce Lee

Bruce Lee’s Secret of Formless MartialArts

Newsletter 976

Formless like Bruce Lee

There is a quote by Bruce Lee…

“You must be shapeless, formless, like water. When you pour water in a cup, it becomes the cup. When you pour water in a bottle, it becomes the bottle. When you pour water in a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Water can drip and it can crash. Become like water my friend.”

Now a lot of people refer to this quote.
It is held up as an iconic concept,
a golden standard.
Be formless.

And it is almost entirely misunderstood.

I heard one fellow say,
I don’t want to study karate
because I want to be formless.

But how can you be formless if you don’t have form first?
Do you think Bruce didn’t study forms?
He studied Wing Chun,
which has forms.
And he studied the forms of the drills,
the form of the Sticky Hands.
The guy was a living,
walk and talking
form.
Then he was formless.

First comes form,
then comes formlessness.

I want you to google Fred Astair.
Old time dancer.
Probably the most graceful man who ever lived.
His secret?
He makes every thing look effortless.
Do you know how much effort it took
to make his moves effortless?

Now consider that same concept with form.

Do you know how hard Bruce studied
how hard he worked,
how he must have visualized and sweated
to become formless?

Fortunately,
you can choose from a lot of arts to study,
and you can choose from a lot of forms.
You can choose the ones which intrigue you,
which fascinate you,
which seem to be the best for self defense,
or whatever your goal is in the martial arts.

Here are some of my favorite forms.
http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/6-shaolin-butterfly/

They are incredibly simple,
very short,
very easy to translate into formlessness.
(Read the win below…)

Have a great work out!
Al

A WIN!

Al,
I’ve sped through the Shaolin Butterfly, am learning the Five Army Tai Chi Chuan and the Butterfly Baguazhang. It seems to me that now I can look at classical forms and simply understand how to do them correctly. It’s absolutely amazing. The practice and learning process basically infuses a student with the basics to make anything work. To correct the whole of an art simply by looking at the forms and playing around with them. I’ve applied this to many classical forms I learned years ago. Thanks so much for the master key to all the martial arts right in my hand. ~ Justin

“The stillness in stillness is not the real stillness;
only when there is stillness in movement does the universal rhythm manifest.”

– Bruce Lee

How to Empty Out the Martial Arts

The Empty of Martial Arts

Gichin Funakoshi changed the name of karate.
It was naha te, which means ‘China Hand.’
He changed it to Karate, which means ‘empty hand.’
There have been all sorts of interpretations
regarding the ‘empty’ in Karate,
and why Gichin did this.
There have also been a lot of interest
in the significance of the word ‘empty’
for the whole martial arts.

I think it is Kenpo that says something to the effect
that no matter if you have a weapon,
I come to you with empty hands.
This is not born out,
however,
because Kenpo, and karate,
and other martial arts
have a lot of weapons.
So what does the word ‘empty’ mean.

Take a look at a sentence from The Tao.

‘Do nothing until nothing is left undone.’

This weird statement of redundancy
and a sort of a ‘double negative’ concept
gives hint to the true meaning.
But to understand the true meaning
one has to study both the hard and the soft.
Study just the hard and you are only studying one half the art.
Study just the soft and you are only studying one half the art.
You have to study both,
then put them together,
then think a lot to figure out the significance
of the word,
of the concept,
‘empty.’

In Aikido,
you empty the space in front of the punch
so that the person falls into the empty.
That’s easy to understand.
Defines a concept of harmony.
though it is sometimes harder than stuff to make work.
But that is the soft side of empty.
Works for Aikido,
Tai Chi,
and other arts, and techniques, of that ilk.
and understanding that kind of empty
leads to a lot of hard to explain abilities.

The empty in the hard side of the art is harder to explain.
First you learn focus.
Your whole body becomes rigid with power
but just for a moment.
Before and after…the body is empty.
If the instruction is good,
or the student is unusually smart,
he figures out that he need not make the whole body rigid.
He makes just the fist rigid,
the rest of the body is empty.
And,
I should add at this point,
the mind learns to become empty to make this step.
It is hard to empty the mind,
to focus on one thing (an opponent)
to the exclusion of all else.
But that is what is needed.
Then,
if the student happens to be blessed,
he figures out that he need not even make the fist empty.
He can just empty his fist
and stick the sticks of his bones
through the watermelon body of his opponent.
You find out all about this,
and all the necessary drills to make it happen,
in The Punch.

And,
to reach this level you have to understand
a few rather incredible things.
Stuff like:
the body is nothing but space…empty.
Or:
the universe is backwards.
But I will leave that for another time.
The truth is that,
unless a person has figured out how to make an ‘empty’ punch,
this stuff tends to be very scary.

anyway,
the subject of ‘empty’
is crucial to the martial arts,
and really needs to be understood
if one is going to get past the pain of bashing,
and into the true sublime nature of the martial arts.

Al

A WIN!

I’ve ordered several courses from you, but didn’t feel like it was time to write in until now. When I first got Matrixing Chi, it didn’t really make sense to me. Then I got The Punch and things started to click. The two flowed together and complimented each other incredibly well. I began to feel energy inside me, and my punches were beginning to pack a bit more power. But it wasn’t until I ordered The Master Instructor Course that things really changed. I began to notice (and fix) mistakes I hadn’t seen before. The most noticeable was the back stance. After correcting it, my punches have become much heavier as I’m able to more efficiently channel energy up my leg, through my arm, and out my fist. ~ Mylan B

“The less effort, the faster and more powerful you will be.”
– Bruce Lee

Growing Spiritually through the Martial Arts

Newsletter 973

Evolution Through Martial Arts

An interesting thing to think about,
when you do martial arts,
is how much you are evolving.

If you do a form
you might be doing a certain number of squats
by doing the horse stance,
a certain number of lunges
by doing front stances,
and so on.
This is all physical.
You get in better shape through
the simplicity of body weight exercises.
But what about the spirit?
How do you measure the progress of the spirit?
Actually,
there is a way to measure your spiritual evolution
through the martial arts.

What does a white belt have?
hopes and dreams,
not much discipline,
that’s all.

What does a green belt have?
a bare understanding of movements.

What does a brown belt have?
better understanding of movements
with power.

What does a black belt have?
He understands the movements
and he has control.
Control is so-o-o much more important than power.

What does a master have?
Wisdom.
His techniques are so polished
he can do them without muscle.
He knows what is happening
without having to think about it.
So what is the difference between these ranks?

Time.
And…the number of times they have done their forms/techniques.
The number of times you have done a technique
is the most important thing here.

So you go to class,
two hours a week
for a year.
You make it to green belt
and you have some understanding of what you have done,
and you have done the forms ten times a week for a year,
or 500 times.

You go for brown belt,
you practice for another year,
and you have done the forms 1000 times.

You go for black belt,
practice for another year
1500 forms

A few years pass,
let’s say ten,
you make it to 4th degree black belt
more forms,
add them up at 500 a year…
13 years
6,500 forms

But what if you did the 6,500 forms in one year.
Would you be a master?
You might have the wisdom,
you probably need a bit more physical work,
but, yeah.
If you could do 6,500 form in one year,
you could cut 12 years off the runway.

Unfortunately,
most people practice inadequate forms.
Random movement,
incorrect physics,
dictate that they will go slowly
no matter how much they practice.

But what if you had perfect forms,
that condensed the material of the random motions
that make up the classical forms?
What if you had a form that focused
only on the true and correct technique,
and was totally logical?
Would you have to do the forms 6,500 times?
Or,
if the forms were ten times better,
could you just do the forms 650 times?

Interesting question, eh?
With an interesting answer.
You see,
after selling matrixing course,
specifically Matrix Karate and
The Master Instructor Course,
since 2007,
I have seen that people have a rough time with this idea.

They think it takes 13 years,
because some bozo who wants to make money off them
tells them so.

But if this idea was correct
we would have no rock and roll.
Takes too long to master the guitar,
you know.

If this idea was correct
we would have no army.
Takes too long to make a soldier,
you see.

If this idea was correct
we would still be cavemen,
chipping flints
and scratching our armpits.

But the idea is correct.
Kids pick up the guitar today,
and next year are rock and roll stars.

Young men are given weapons,
and go into combat a few months later.

We aren’t cavemen.

But,
we have to give up the idea
that learning is slow.

If learning was slow
we would still be children!

No.
You can learn the martial arts fast.
And you have to.
It is a dangerous world,
riots,
home invasion,
crooked cops,
a government in love with abuse…
you have to learn fast.
Period.

Here are the fastest, best, most logical martial arts courses in the world…

http://monstermartialarts.com

All you have to do is scroll down the page,
pick the art that interests you the most,
and do it so darn quickly
the mugger’s head will spin.

Have a great work out!

Al

A WIN!

I have found such tremendous benefit in my study of Matrix Karate that I want to dig deeper and deeper.  It’s only been a few weeks, but the forms flow so easily; it’s like Matrix Martial Arts are the way the body is SUPPOSED to work.  I love it! ~ Ryan O

“Those who are unaware they are walking in darkness will never seek the light.”
– Bruce Lee

New Publication: The Book of Five Arts

Newsletter 959

New Book Release!
The Book of Five Arts

Just released a new book:
‘The Book of Five Arts’
The title idea comes from Myamoto Musashi’s ‘Book of Five Rings.’
In this book I detail the exact sequence of five martial arts.
Now some of you have seen some of the material.
There is matrix karate, shaolin butterfly, butterfly pa kua chang,
matrix tai chi chuan and Monkey Boxing.

The glory of this book, even if you have seen parts,
is that it includes graphics and charts
showing exactly how the progression of matrices work.
So you look at the karate matrix,
you understand what the blank spots are,
then you look at the shaolin butterfly,
different blank spots,
and so on through each of the five arts.
By the time you’re done you won’t have any blank spots.
At all.
A blank spot in one art will be filled by a technique from another art.
BUT…
you have to do it.
Fortunately,
it is simple.
If you have picked up the books on Perfect Karate,
or the small book I wrote on the butterfly,
you will know exactly what I am doing.
But you likely haven’t seen the work on Matrix Tai Chi.
Not at all.
Even if you’ve done the video course,
this is quite a bit more linear,
easier,
simpler.
And Monkey Boxing.
Ahhh.
That is my art,
and here is how you get started in it.
You’ll see how the basics come together for a perfect matrix.

The book is 160 pages,
over 300 illustrations.
And it doesn’t just show the matrix of five individual arts,
it shows how they come together to make one art,
the real art,
the real path of the martial arts.

So here’s the Amazon link.
The Book of Five Arts
Make sure you give it five stars.

Have a GREAT work out!

Al
https://www.amazon.com/Book-Five-Arts-Martial-Training/dp/1796218332/ref=sr_1_2?keywords=the+book+of+five+arts+al+case&qid=1550014606&s=gateway&sr=8-2-spell

A WIN!
Al,
I’ve sped through the Shaolin Butterfly, am learning the Five Army Tai Chi Chuan and the Butterfly Baguazhang. It seems to me that now I can look at classical forms and simply understand how to do them correctly. It’s absolutely amazing. The practice and learning process basically infuses a student with the basics to make anything work. To correct the whole of an art simply by looking at the forms and playing around with them. I’ve applied this to many classical forms I learned years ago. Thanks so much for the master key to all the martial arts right in my hand.

Justin H

Knowledge will give you power, but character respect.
Bruce Lee

‘Backwarditis’ in the Martial Arts

Newsletter 956

Going Backwards in the Martial Arts

Have you ever thought about
the actual process involved in fighting?
Most people think it is hit the other guy quicker,
but that is so inadequate
so far from the truth.

You stand and face Bozo Bob.
Bozo Bob has a thought:
hit you.
First:
you have to pick up the thought,
see the technique he is going to use
Then:
you have to reverse the thought
understand the technique from your viewpoint
because you saw it from his viewpoint.
It is reversed from your viewpoint.
You need to reverse it in your mind.

You need to reverse it
so you don’t create a defense that is backwards.
Then:
you have to create the defense…and do it.

Now,
that is the simplicity.
More to it
of course
but that is the simple truth.
So how do you reverse
the thought of his attack
so you don’t make a backwards defense?

In classical karate,
and other arts with forms,
we do the forms.
We practice controlling the bodies,
we practice the defenses for the moves
until everything is intuitive.

Think back to when you first began,
chances are,
most people go through this,
you went through what I call
‘backwarditis’

Backwarditis is when you do things backwards.
The teacher says right,
the students does left.
The teacher says step backward,
the student steps forward.
The teacher says do the technique on the right side
the student does it on the left side.
This is backwarditis.
Teachers everywhere experience it
They blink,
and keep going,
and the student eventually gets over it.

But nobody knows why the student does everything backwards.
Now you know.
The student looks at the attack
and it is backward in his mind
because he is observing somebody else do it,
so he makes a backward defense.
Eventually,
he gets over it,
without understanding
he finally absorbs the data
and begins moving correctly.
Knowing this should help you
when you construct self defenses,
it will help you get over trace backwarditis
and learn new things quicker.
It will help you make the bridge to intuitivity.

Now,
here’s a couple of interesting things.
Arts where the student doesn’t experience backwarditis
are lacking something.
Arts which don’t have forms
are missing the step for getting rid of backwarditis.

For instance,
MMA doesn’t have forms,
any experiences of backwarditis
are quick and fleeting.
The bodies are intertwined,
they are positioned
so that backwarditis doesn’t happen.
BUT…
to be an art there should be backwarditis.
It is a step of evolution that is necessary
lest the student doesn’t experience proper growth,
he doesn’t go through the stages of learning
that are in the martial arts.

Don’t get me wrong,
I am not bashing MMA,
I am just describing the effects of theory
and the teaching method
and what to look for in a student.
Heck,
there are things in MMA
that other arts don’t have.
But we are just looking at the teaching/learning method here.

Anyway,
there are several ‘cures’
things to help the student make the shift
to thinking backwards in his head intuitively

First,
when doing basics at the beginning of class
do them facing the same way as the class.
Then,
doing them facing the class.
Watch carefully,
see who has got the wrong foot forward,
correct him gently.
And keep going back and forth
every few exercises,
facing the students
then facing away from the students.
This is pretty easy and good to do.

Second,
make sure they practice their techniques on both sides,
have them perform their forms on both sides,
and even have them do the forms backward.
And backwards on both sides.
The students will get over backwarditis
their minds will be quick and agile,
will duplicate what an attack is correctly,
and build a defense that is not backwards.

If you want to know something fascinating things about forms
how they are constructed,
and even construct some yourselves,
I recommend the
‘Create Your Own Art’ course
http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/2d-create-your-own-art/

Do be warned,
the videos are poor quality.
You can still see them,
but the quality of video recorders
when I filmed this course
was REALLY caveman.
BUT
the material is spectacular,
and the Buddha Crane book
is even bundled in,
as an example of how to create an art.
There is also a progression of art through Pa Kua Chang
that is simply fascinating.
Really good stuff!

Have a great work out!
Al
http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/2d-create-your-own-art/

A WIN!
Hello Mr. Case. I recently purchased the Create Your Own Art course from you. As I have told you in the past I studied Hsing-i quan. Lately I have been having lots of trouble in my practice. At one time I had what I called the Hsing -i “kernal of power” but as of recently I have been unable to do it correctly. The power was bleeding off somewhere in the transitions between stances. I looked at your book Buddha Crane Karate book and I noticed that you have the foot in an elevated position much like the Seven Star stance of Northern Mantis before the step and strike. Well on a hunch I jumped up and ran in the other room and tried it in the Pi quan form and presto! All the power was back.

Knowledge will give you power, but character respect.
Bruce Lee

A Martial Arts Night Before Xmas!

Newsletter 952

The Night Before Xmas

Here it is,
my annual Xmas poem,
the Night Before Xmas,
adapted for Martial Artists.

I won’t make apologies for it,
but I will ask one thing,
a present to me for Xmas,
if you will.

If I have offended,
sent the wrong order,
dropped a communication,
offended you in ANY manner,
even with this poem,
please forgive.
It’s a new year,
help me start it fresh,
the world is too wonderful a place
to carry around ANY ill will.

Now,
with no further ado,
here is…

THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS!

Twas the night before Christmas
I was in my shack
primed and ready
for the red fat attack.

my weapons were loaded
the windows were barred
all would be safe
while I was on guard

The chimney was decked
with concertina wire
I crouched by the couch
ready to fire.

I had an M60
with ammo to feed
I didn’t care
if the red fat did bleed.

A loaded shotgun
and grenades to spare
when red fat came down
I’d blow him out of there.

Throwing stars and knives
and a really long sword
and if that didn’t work
I knew a bad word.

Sitting there late
my eyes started to close
when suddenly I heard
a bunch of ho hos.

Off with the lights
safety off, too
I  watched the fire close
and heard a sound from the flu.

‘Ouch and gosh darn it
who put the wire here
those are my undies
starting to tear!’

Then a shower of soot
and a grunt and a groan
he landed in the fire
and gave out a moan.

He was rubbing the place
where the wire did tear
so I held down the trigger
and lead filled the air.

belt after belt
did I deal the red fat
he danced and he jumped
I knew he felt that!

then quicker than spit
I ran out of lead
but enough was enough
he had to be dead.

Boy was I shocked
to see him stand tall
stepping out of the fireplace
not bothered at all.

So I grabbed up the 16
to mow him down
he had to be hurting
cause I saw his big frown.

Then I was empty
and he came straight for me
I pulled out my knives
and sliced him with glee

He jumped to the side
moving real quick
disarmed my knives
with a well placed kick

then he dropped the big bag
he had on his shoulder
reached forth his arms
and his anger did smolder

He grabbed hard my neck
and held me up high
I tried kicks and punches
but I was like a fly

Not karate nor judo
no art did work
and he grinned a mean grin
and called me a jerk

‘Don’t you know
you stupid little man
Christmas is forever
in spite of your plan.’

Then he threw me aside
and proceeded to work
giving presents to all
and to me a great smirk

And when he left
the great big red fat
he left me a lump of coal
the big red fat rat!

HANAKWANMASS TO ALL
and to all a great work out.

Have a great work out!
Al

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/matrix-karate/

Here’s a Christmas win…

A WIN!

Merry Christmas my friend. I love what you do, and you’ve changed the way I approach the arts that I love. 2018 marks my 40th year as a martial artist, and I believe that what you do is so important to us true believers. Please remember that innovation is always going to be violently resisted initially. What you do is absolutely logical, and it’s impossible for any sane man to argue with logic. Press on with pride brother. You ARE making history and a legacy. Best wishes and thanks.
– Sean

“There is no comfort in the growth zone and no growth in the comfort zone”
Unknown