Saturday, September 19, 2015

Expect the Unexpected.

Something interesting I came across recently was an E-Book entitled 'Outlaw Karate' by some guy names Al Case (refers to himself as Master and even has some Youtube Videos as well as a number of Published books, including some novels).
The book caught my attention because of the title so I read it beginning to end, nothing really special contained in the pages other than a reference to some other books the guy has Published entitled 'Matrixing Karate' which is a five book series claiming to teach, perfect, and Master Karate in just a few months or less.

I would normally have brushed something like this off as complete non-sense, but something within the book 'Outlaw Karate' caught my attention.
Nothing special, certainly, but some basic information on mechanics, not even that, much less, it takes just a few short pages to explain the entirety of Kris Wilder's in-depth work on Sanchin Kata without even missing a beat it works this as the central theme of the book with the Kata presented not even mattering, one could easily replace them with Kata of their own system and go from there.

The man is one of those people trying to make a buck, and doing a very good job it seems, and the videos show a guy that looks completely out of shape, but he does give some interesting lessons in paying attention to similarities between techniques in regards to what I have come to know as 'Pathways of Motion.'
Teaching along these lines, I have always felt, gets people much more quickly to the point without wasting time on all the other stuff.
Do I feel this guy is legit? No. He probably just picked up a few things here and there and had enough sense to utilize what he picked up, but it does go to show that there is something to learn from everything if you pay close enough attention.

Sensei used to go on about the notion that words and concepts often got in the way of Practice because people constantly became hung up on certain things and completely missed the point.
What one sees as a fraud may have a deeper understanding than what one accepts as legitimate and, as a result of their preconceived notions, they miss out on something that just might yield deeper insight and produce exactly what they need, or perhaps those that find what they need find exactly what they are looking for because they expect to find it? Maybe it works both ways.

The unexpectedness of things often snaps us back to the reality of the moment and forces us to pay close attention, to be mindful without obstruction of thought, word, or conception.
Like a proverbial Kaishaku smaking us upside the head we are jostled out of our lazy haze and back into full-on alert mode.
Sensei would often do things like this, unexpectedly telling us to 'get out' during Zazen, sitting in the Zendo, in the middle of a Zen Intensive at his home in Lacey... I simply left and went to sit Zazen in the living room until I heard the bell to signify the end of the session.
There were many instances like that, so many that they became expected and, thus, he did what was unexpected at that moment and simply sat quietly, changing everything up again.

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