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Thursday, March 13, 2014

The Song Remains The Same

In the process of going through the Martial Arts Lineage Project in an attempt to give the site a serious review. In doing so, I've listened to some episodes of the sites podcast--mostly interviews with various martial arts instructors.

There seems to be a pretty wide scope of martial artists in there, which speaks well to the projects goals.

But at some point, it struck me that so many of these people have the same story.
  • Young kid (who may or may not have been taught some stuff by father), becomes fascinated with martial arts.
  • Young kid finds "real deal" instructor, who teaches authentic combat stuff. 
  • Kid then goes on to find other instructors, who are always "real deal", not like these guys out there who are ruining the art(s) with their flashy/sporty/unreal nonsense.
(Note: this is the pattern for American martial arts practitioners, mostly.)

I found it odd that not one person said "yeah, I trained with one instructor for a while, and then I realize that what they were teaching didn't work." Or "yeah, I got totally seduced by the flash and glamor for a while, but I got over it."

When everyone seems to follow the same narrative, I start to suspect the narrative. Maybe that's just me.

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