Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Looking back at my life and the different martial arts that I studied it seems obvious that I was destined to do Bagua. In both our life and our training we are given a series of obstacles to overcome so that we may find or better understand ourselves. We are not flesh, but energy and the nature of our energy maintains the same pattern in all of our activities. As I've said many times the problems you have in your training/fighting are the same problems that you have in your life style. In fact life is really a series of mirrors that continues to show you your weakness and strength through endless forms and patterns. Those who manage to understand their energy find true peace and happiness. While the majority of us never find the signature of our energy and continue to repeat the same mistakes. This of course results in a life that feels frustrating, exhausting or even meaningless.
There are various methods that people offer to help you find your "purpose" which involves meditation, isolation or some form of distancing yourself from your problems. This is great if you are a monk and you don't have to continually participate in the small mundane tasks of life. But the truth is that we are educated from a very young age that we should ignore our energy signature because it is insignificant and unimportant.
When I was young I enjoyed math. I could always get the right answer in my head before the teacher even taught us how to do it. Even though my answers were all correct, I couldn't use their method to show my work and thus I failed the class. This of course killed any desire to do math.
When I used "black" vernacular to express myself around my white friends they would laugh at me. When I used the vocabulary that I learned from my educational teachers around my black friends they would cringe.
If I wore something that other people didn't wear they would say I was weird, tacky or conceited.
Even the music I liked had to be filtered to the circles that I enjoyed hanging out with.
I secretly watched Power Rangers cause they actually had real martial arts between the corny scenes and dialogue.
I loved rap, but in order for me to do songs that would sell, I would have to act more "gangster".
I could actually write a list of over a thousand examples of how, why and when I had to compromise my energy in order to be accepted. It's strange that we go through so much in order to be accepted by people who are confused and unhappy. In fact the more confused and unhappy they are the quicker they are to critique your energy.
This ignorance of your own self energy will never lead to anything good. No matter how small or insignificant it may seem, you must draw a line until you can discover yourself. Some things you think you want to do, but when you try it you hate it. That's ok because that is the process of learning the shape of your soul. When you don't try the things that continually poke at you, it eventually becomes a zombie bite. You become a zombie among the mass of people that are already lost, trying to feed off the hope of those who have not yet been turned.
You can recognize these zombies because they always answer questions with "we" and "our". "We don't do business like that here", "That's not part of our culture", "girls don't like that stuff" , etc. Every time you use a group of people to represent your identity you are only further misleading yourself. It's an easy way to continually ignore how your truly feel.
It's so bad that people feel genuinely depressed when the basketball team they like loses. They have become so much a part of the energy of the illusion, that they don't even realize that they are crying for people who don't even like them. Many of the "heroes" that people worship on TV wouldn't even shake your hand. Why do you know more about Brad Pit than you do your neighbor? You brag about your country in the Olympics, but you don't even exercise.
I don't think that any activities are inherently bad, but if they influence you to the degree that you no longer know yourself, it's dangerous. We use politics, nationality, religion, science, fashion and even education as an excuse to not have to understand who we are. When you are young they empty out your "crazy ideas" and when you get older they fill you with their own. The meaning of our lives ceases to be peace and happiness and changes into the acceptance of others. Eventually you don't even realize that your thoughts are no longer your own. You just have this nasty zombie bite, that ticks you off from time to time causing you to lash out at your loved ones. Eventually you give them the same pressure that you had growing up and the cycle continues.
God tells us that our inheritance is not of this world. Many people believe that this means that Christians are supposed to be poor and miserable. But Jesus clearly says that he has come so that we have life more abundantly (In this life and the next). In fact he gave the fisherman so many fish that they could barely put it on the boat. He wouldn't give fisherman books. The desires that you have in your heart were put their by God in the first place, to resist them is to resist God. In that resistance you and your dream will become perverted into something of the cursed world.
What He means when He says our gifts are not "of" this world, is that they are not from this world. This world is only an illusion of reality. I was scared to go to China because of what the world says, I was intimidated to learn Chinese cause the world said it was hard, anything you want to do the world will tell you why it's impossible. But once again, OUR INHERITANCE IS NOT OF THIS WORLD. It doesn't matter what people think if God opens the door for you. The news says it's dangerous, but in your heart you've been told it is safe. If I had listened to the news about SARS when I decided to come to Taiwan...I would have been missed my whole life.
This comes back to why I feel I was destined to learn Bagua. The art of change. The ability to change your situation, weight, balance and attack in literally millions of possibilities.
It's as simple as I couldn't accept the small choices that I had been given. "This kind of person should do this" and "That kind of person should wear that"
I'm ME!! I will always be me! I don't need anyone telling me, how to me. The world will continue to pollute your mind with fear and convince you to kill every great idea you've ever had. Your gifts are not of this world because they are so much more. You will do things that have never been done before, therefore you can't be put in some ridiculous category. You have your own sense of humor, your own taste in style and your own purpose in this life. If people don't like it, it's their problem, not yours. There are definitely people who will appreciate your dreams and help you to mature them. Find true teachers. Take advice only from happy people. Be strong enough to be you. Discern yourself from the illusion of you.
Friday, March 22, 2013
Originally I was making personal DVD's for many of my students around the world, but moving to China put a damper in my plans. China will not let me send anything that they deem suspicious...which is a black man selling Bagua DVD's.
However it led me to be able to do something even more convenient for those interested in learning Bagua. This online video contains the first 8 basic attacks (movements) of Bagua known as the way of striking (heaven section) along with lots of applications, variations, training drills, multiple opponent practice, fighting from the circle and security usage.
This video is good for beginners at Bagua, advanced students or even those who practice a different style but want to mix in a bit of circle fighting. It contains 77 minutes that will teach you to completely adopt these Gao Bagua into your arsenal.
It's 4.81 GB, so make sure your computer has the room for the download. For information on how to make a purchase. Contact me at me email firstname.lastname@example.org
Sunday, March 3, 2013
Im grateful to my master Wu Guo Zheng for the wealth of martial arts that he has blessed me with. I'm also grateful to have touch hands and shared secrets with many masters of many arts through out the years. Each encounter has made a change to my understanding of my style and in essence has changed the way I perceive my life. My father told me to train so I trained. My mother taught me to pray and I prayed. My Chinese teacher urged me to study and I studied. My master molded me to understand and I understood. I have never been special, but I listen especially well. I am the product of the good people that God has put around me. In the end, ego is the enemy of truth.
Me and my two brothers found the best way to really improve our skills as children was to attack my militant father. Sometimes we'd wait until he was nice and full and we'd launch attacks just as he wiped the food from his mouth. Other times he would be in the middle of watching a game, or just returning from work. Whatever the scenario our attempted ambushes failed repeatedly. My pops spent the majority of my life beating us down.
Of course time becomes a factor as he gets older and we get stronger. But even as we all received black belts in various arts and learned different languages and philosophies, he continued to find a way to tag us.
"Dad caught me with a left hook in his office today. It was so embarrassing." My brother Eddie told me as we watched TV at a Thanksgiving get together. At the time I had been training for about 20 years, which means Eddie had been training for 25 years. No matter what style we were practicing at the time, combat was first and foremost. It was embarrassing to get tagged by a 50 year old man, but no matter how we defended, he always found a target.
My father was the golden gloves champion in Cincinnati before he began his training in martial arts. Before boxing he was a street fighter and a hustler. The tips he gave me and my brothers as a youth continue to be our biggest advantages in our art today.
"A slow attack is easy enough to avoid. A fast attack can be timed and countered. But the attack that starts slow and then ends fast is unblockable." My father told us as we continued hitting the pads in succession.
It's a method you see all of the greats use at one time or another. From Mohammed Ali to Bruce Lee you can see the quiet before the storm as there attack is unleashed at a frequency that can't be anticipated. When the mind sees something slow it is filled with a false sense of security. When the opponent sees it, he is already preparing his counter. As he prepares WHACK, the fight is over.
Every martial arts movement and strategy is just a mirror of life. If there was a monster attacking the city and eating children, people would immediately run out to meet the threat with no regard for their own life. But it's the slow attack that ends fast, that most people won't even see coming.
In the 80's people used to rap and sing about anything that was fun. Talking to girls, eating food, dancing or even bad dreams. It wasn't until the early 90's that the first "gangster rap" was released. Gradually hip hop and gangsters became synonymous. Instead of rappers becoming more creative in ways to use their vocabulary to express life, they became obsessed with money and death.
Earlier movies that were too violent, sexual or irresponsible were banned from being able to make it to the public. Now if there isn't enough violence or sexuality it just isn't a good movie. People used to be scared to talk about dark magic and now Harry Potter is our hero. Children grow up wishing that they could fall in love with a vampire or a werewolf. Everyone used to watch their mouth in front of authority figures and kids, but now kids are cursing at authority figures regularly. Now a days the only word that you can say that offends people is Jesus.
This change in our society may seem like freedom of choice at first. Just as the slow attack appears to be an opportunity before it suddenly quickens. When did it become more important to be a wealthy man than a good man? When did it become cool to be disrespectful to women? Before when there was a problem in the relationship, they just wanted to find a way to fix it. Now if there's a problem with a relationship, we just want to find a way to switch it. Every movie shows you the excitement of falling in love, but no movie shows you the power of staying in love.
It was a slow and gradual process to get us here, but now the attack is upon us. The earth shakes as a consequence of our spiritual detachment. Those who attempt to grow spiritually are fooled into believing that we can become God. Which is the very first temptation that Satan brought to Eve in the garden. There are hints and clues in every belief system that we were in a spiritual war far before technology came along to distract us. Now the majority of us are too arrogant to even realize we are in pain. We are consumed by consumerism and drunk in deception.
Let me tell you that I love movies. I love tupac. I even read all the Harry Potter books in Chinese. But in addition to being entertained, it is your responsibility to be aware of your own thoughts. As a screen play writer and an actor I can tell you that every minute of film has taken months to prepare and set up. Every angle has been well calculated and if you feel upset and powerless at the end of the film, that was their exact intention. Even bad movies serve a purpose in getting their desired reaction.
I eventually found the counter to my father's attack. I had to learn to fight him with my eyes closed. Then the illusion was gone and I was left to react with only my feelings. No matter how the attack began I was in a good position to react in the end. You could say that I was fighting through faith, which is the same thing that I do now. When I see news or film that promotes death, I close my eyes and know that Jesus has promised me life.