Using the Tibetan sword

Discussion in 'H.I. Cantina' started by DannyinJapan, Jan 12, 2006.

  1. Spectre


    Nov 3, 1998

    Yes, that's a combination of what I'm saying, and what could be called "body sense". :)

  2. captlid


    Feb 23, 2002
    Was almost understanding.
    What do you mean by this statement?
  3. DannyinJapan


    Oct 9, 2003
    This is HARD stuff, my friends. Hard to understand, even harder to accept. You don't "respond" at all, except to avoid incoming danger, be it a finger or a bat. Just because something seems to be working does not mean that you should continue doing it. Especially in a fight. Remember: this is about your survival, not your victory.
    The desire to see a technique completed is a trap you have to avoid.
  4. captlid


    Feb 23, 2002
    I got ya. Especially for over committal of actions and then being open for counter attack...
  5. DannyinJapan


    Oct 9, 2003
  6. InfidelShootist


    Nov 10, 2007
    Here's a few links to the actual manuals written by the Knights and their descendants.Many are not in English but you can get the idea from the pictures.

    The Tibetan is basically a longsword,So the older manuals would be more correct as longswords were the primary sword in the earliest manuals.

    Heidelberger Liederhandschrift

    Hanko Döbringer
    fechtbuch from 1389

    Top practice weapons "Wasters"

    This is George Silver's work translated and interpreted to modern English.Mastery of the principles of combat are more important than perfect technique or conditioning IMO.
    Here they are passed down from the best knights and best teachers.
    Brief Instructions upon my paradoxes of Defense for the true handling of all manner of weapons together with the four grounds and the four governors which governors are left out in my paradoxes without the knowledge of which no man can fight safe.

    Chapter 1
    The four grounds or principals of that true fight at all manner of weapons are these 4, viz
    2. Distance
    3. Time
    4. Place.
    Original Interpretation

    The reason whereof these 4. grounds or principles be the first and the chiefest are the following because through Judgment, you keep your distance, through distance you take your time, through time you safely win or gain the place of your adversary, the place being won or gained, you have time safely either to strike, thrust, ward, close, grip, slip or go back, in the which time your enemy is disappointed to hurt you, or to defend himself, by reason that he hath lost his true Place, the reason that he hath lost his true place is by the length of time through the number of his feet, to which he is of necessity driven to that will be agent. Original Interpretation

    The 4 governors are those that follow Original Interpretation

    1. The first governor is judgment which is to know when your adversary can reach you and when not, and when you can do the like to him, and to know by the goodness or badness of his lying, what he can do, and when and how he can perform it.Original Interpretation

    2. The second governor is Measure. Measure is the better to know how to make your space true to defend yourself, or to offend your enemy.Original Interpretation

    3. The third and forth governors is a twofold mind when you press in on your enemy, for as you have a mind to go forward, so you must have at that instant a mind to fly backwards upon any action that shall be offered or done by your adversary.Original Interpretation

    Up to Table of Contents

    Chapter 2
    Certain general rules which must be observed in the perfect use of all kind of weapons.

    1. First when you come into the field to encounter with your enemy, observe well the scope, evenness, and unevenness of your ground, put yourself in readiness with your weapon, before your enemy come within distance, set the sun in his face travers if possible you can still remembering your governors. Original Interpretation

    2. Let all your lying be such as shall best like yourself, ever considering out what fight your enemy chargeth you, but be sure to keep your distance, so that neither head, arms, hands, body, nor legs be within his reach, but that he must first of necessity put in his foot or feet, at which time you have the choice of 3 actions by the which you may endanger him and go free yourself: Original Interpretation

    a. The first is to strike or thrust at him, at that instant when he have gained you the place by his coming in.

    b. The second is to ward, and after to strike or thrust from that, remember your governors

    c. The third is to slip a little back and to strike or thrust after him

    but ever remember that in the first motion of your adversary toward you, that you slide a little back so shall you be prepared in due time to perform any of the three actions aforesaid, by disappointing him of his true place whereby you shall safely defend yourself and endanger him.

    Remember also that if through fear or policy, he strike or thrust short, and there with go back, or not go back, follow him upon your twofold governors, so shall your ward and slip be performed in like manner as before, and yourself still be safe. Original Interpretation

    Keep your distance and suffer not your adversary to win or gain the place of you, for if he shall so do, he may endanger to hurt or kill you. Original Interpretation

    Know it the place is, when one may strike or thrust home without putting in of his foot.

    It may be objected against this last ground, that men do often strike and thrust at the halfsword and yet the same is perfectly defended, where to I answer that that defense is perfectly made by reason that the warder hath his true space before the striker or thruster is in his force or entered into his action.

    Therefore always do prevent both blow and thrust, the blow by true space, and the thrust by narrow space that is true crossing it before the same coming into their full force, otherwise the hand of the agent being as swift as the hand of the patient, the hand of the Agent being the first mover, must of necessity strike or thrust that part of the patient which shall be stricken or thrust at because the time of that hand to the time of the hand, being of like swiftness the first mover hath the advantage.

    4. When your enemy shall press upon you, he will be Open in one place or other, both at single and double weapon, or at the least he will be too weak in his ward upon such pressing, then strike or thrust at such open or weakest part that you shall find nearest. Original Interpretation

    5. When you attempt to win the place, do it upon guard, remembering your governors, but when he presseth upon you and gaineth you the Place, then strike or thrust at him in his coming in, Original Interpretation

    Or if he shall strike or thrust at you, then ward it, and strike or thrust at him from your ward, and fly back instantly according to your governors, so shall you escape safely, for that the first motion of the feet backward is more swift, then the first motion of the feet forward, whereby your regression will be more swifter, then his course in progression to annoy you, the reason is, that in the first motion of his progression his number and weight is greater than yours are, in your first motion of your regression, nevertheless all men know that the continual course of the feet forward is more swift than the continual course of the feet backwards.

    6. If your enemy lie in variable fight, and strike or thrust at you then be sure to keep your distance and strike or thrust at such open part of him as are nearest unto you, viz, at the hand, arm, head, or leg of him, and go back withal. Original Interpretation

    If 2 men fight at variable fight, and if within distance they must both be hurt, for in such fight they cannot make a true cross, nor have time truly to judge, by reason that the swift motion of the hand, being a swifter mover, then the eye deceiveth the eye, at what weapon soever you shall fight withal, as in my paradoxes of defense in the _____ chapter thereof doth appear.

    Look to the grip of your enemy and upon his slip take such ward as shall best fit your hand, from which ward strike or thrust, still remembering your governors, Original Interpretation

    If you can indirect your enemy at any kind of weapon, then you have the advantage, because he must move his feet to direct himself again, and you in the meantime may strike or thrust at him, and fly out fast, before he can offer anything at you, his time will be so long. Original Interpretation

    When you shall ward blow or thrust, made at your right or left part, with any kind of weapon, remember to draw your hind foot a little circularly, from that part to which the same shall be made, whereby you shall make your defense the perfect and shall stand the more apt to strike or thrust from it. Original Interpretation

  7. DannyinJapan


    Oct 9, 2003
    I like some of the words in this book : "a twofold mind when you press in on your enemy, for as you have a mind to go forward, so you must have at that instant a mind to fly backwards upon any action that shall be offered or done by your adversary."

    It sounds like some of our concepts, but the stuff in the video is technique-performance. It is the opposite of what I was trying to explain. (not good, imo)
  8. InfidelShootist


    Nov 10, 2007
    Can you demonstrate this fighting without technique,effort or sweat?
  9. DannyinJapan


    Oct 9, 2003
    Good videos are hard to find. What you want to look at is footage of Hatsumi Sensei, and ONLY Hatsumi Sensei, from 1995-ish till now. The other hard part is YOU. If you look for techniques, then you will not be able to see the formlessness I am talking about. Many people don't like formlessness; they study martial arts precisely because they WANT form. I could show you in person (maybe, I'm kinda rusty) if you lived down my way.

    Start the video at 3:27

    Come to think of it, some of the cantina guys saw me do this stuff in California a few years back...
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2011
  10. InfidelShootist


    Nov 10, 2007
    I have Hatsumi's books and am familiar with him.His books are filled with techniques basically the same as everyone else give or take.I prefer the Western way of teaching killing techniques without the esoteric mumbo-jumbo.I prefer the Western techniques as well over all others although there is a lot of overlap in all martial art.
  11. DannyinJapan


    Oct 9, 2003
    Trust me - reading his books does not make you familiar with Sensei. (no offense) Sensei himself says that 60% of what he writes is bull$$$$ !

    True, there are many techniques in his (older) books. The 1995- to present books, not so much. His recent books are about 70/30 (budo/techniques.) The techniques are meaningless, as are all techniques. Martial Arts aren't about technique. Some people only see technique and it's all they want and that's fine. A hobby is a hobby.

    I studied ARMA for a while and it seemed to me that there was great wisdom in the books, but it was not understood by the practitioners. Even in the quotes above, you can see it. A "twofold-mind" ? Sounds a bit like mushin to me. Uncommitted mindset..

    Think of technique like the bones in a fish. You don't eat the bones but you need them in order to have a fish.
  12. InfidelShootist


    Nov 10, 2007
    Here's what I believe is a demonstration of Talhoffers work.The big ass stick work will adapt well to a Tibetan sword or cane or mop handle.In the second part with sickles, those adapt well to the khukuri or tomahawk.Practice a few thousand times and you won't think about the technique in a real fight,it will come naturally. Then,you can concentrate on strategy or being one with the universe and unicorns.As long as you win think what you want.At the rate the world is going you might need these skills.Dig that Music.


    The pole-ax.Not for the sword but an evil adaption to the cane.My cane techniques combine pole-ax,longsword and La-Cane techniques.I did a demonstration the other day and the people will never see a walking cane in the same light again.What you can do with the right cane and good technique is amazing.

  13. InfidelShootist


    Nov 10, 2007
    Technique is the foundation of martial art.People here are asking to learn.You can't skip the years of training techniques and skip right to the principles not knowing the technique.
  14. DannyinJapan


    Oct 9, 2003
    (Please read the first post of this thread.)

    No, technique is not the foundation of the martial arts. Yes, you can skip unnecessary years of training and start on the principles.
    Practicing a technique 10,000 times will only make you less able to do anything other than that technique.

    If you wish to start your own thread about studying techniques, please feel free.
  15. Spectre


    Nov 3, 1998
    Don't know that I can really agree, Danny. At least, with what you seem to be saying here. Yes, people do need some form to follow, just as they need intention.

    That's a deceptive statement, and no more than partially true. It will not "only" make you "...". Perfect practice (or, at least as you can get) will also enable you to do that technique smoothly and well.

    Intention without any sense of what to do with the body is close to useless. You have to know the form before you can throw it away. You have to train well before you can clear your mind and just response appropriately.

    You can't start at zero, man. You end there. Ever heard of the Kihon Happo? Yeah?
  16. Howard Wallace

    Howard Wallace . Moderator

    Feb 23, 1999
    Great debate.

    There's a little line I like from the Maha Prajna Paramita Hridaya Sutra. It goes:

  17. DannyinJapan


    Oct 9, 2003
    John, I only pass on what I learned from Soke. I don't just make up my own ideas about budo. Do you know what Kihon Happo means? It does not mean 8 basic forms, contrary to popular opinion. It means "infinite paths." We don't WANT form or intention, John. We don't want to "do" techniques. Smoothly or well - these are useless in a real life or death situation. You have to be totally connected to what is actually happening. You cannot try to perform some scripted act that you keep in your mind. You only need to practice any technique correctly a few times and then you can forget it.
    As long as you can punch, kick and cut without falling over, you have the basics down and it's time to move on.
  18. DannyinJapan


    Oct 9, 2003
    I should point out that I have this same argument with many members of my own school. Very few people agree with me on this particular subject, except for the Grandmaster. 8)

    Budo IS an art that goes strongly against the grain of "conventional" thinking. You have to think of it like a pool of water. How can you be a part of a pool of water if you only ever practice being an icicle?
  19. Spectre


    Nov 3, 1998
    But, Danny...I'm also reflecting things soke has said. He's talked about the futility of magic as opposed to hard training. I have never said "trust in a technique". What I have said here is "train well, and when emergencies happen, clear your mind, and your body will respond appropriately".

    But you have to train something. I think you're now trying to explain something you haven't quite figured out yet. And we won't have a damn clue what you're trying to say until you know what you mean!


  20. DannyinJapan


    Oct 9, 2003
    I know exactly what I am talking about, John, trust me. I don't remember Soke saying anything about magic. I haven't said anything about magic either. Train well - that is exactly what I am talking about. I am not suggesting that we not use techniques to train. I am suggesting that we don't train in order to learn techniques.

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