Wednesday, December 30, 2009

What State Are You In?

When training or really protecting yourself or someone else you want to invoke one of three states in your advisory. At first, as you progress in your training you will learn to cause one of these states and then as you grow you learn to produce two, but the goal is cause 3 different yet specifc states to your uke/advisory. A form of san shin if you will.

In Taijutsu we employ all things to our advantage, but our biggest advantage is our opponents own mind! Why defeat someone all by yourself when you can actually have him help you? So how do we achieve this? Well the answer is the use of Kukan, kyojutsu, and kyusho. See there you have it!

Clear as mud?

Those three are pretty vague principles and unbelievably there are many Bujinkan members who don’t know what these concepts are really about. Sure they have heard the terms, but don’t really grasp the fullness of these concepts and strategies or what they encapsulate. Now because of this, I developed a simple way of breaking these down these concepts to their most raw states.

I personally teach the C.F.P. method. C.F.P. stands for confusion, fear, and pain. Ultimintly you want your opponent to be experiencing all of these interchanging states. Now you don’t want to just focus on one state. This can be dangerous! For example let say by chance you actually have you opponent in a state of fear, this will only last so long before they develop the moxy in the moment to fight back or do something unexpected. As the adage goes even a mouse will attack a cat if out of options. So what you want to do to avoid this is to cycle through the states. Interchanging these states will never allow the opponent to be able to adapt to the situation. Fear can be overcome, pain can be defeated with adrenaline and confusion only lasts so long before they understand what's going on, but if you cycle through the states they can never adapt.

As an example, if you use a kyusho* to cause pain, which in this case will be the first state, but the pain will not last long so while the opponent is trying to escape the pain you take the pain off, instantly putting them one step behind because they are fighting something that no longer exist. Now in that moment you put them in a lock. Next you let go of the lock to apply pain somewhere else and maybe another lock. Now you’re using kyojutsu or confusion. You don’t let the opponent know where the next attack will be coming from. This will allow you to hold and create space or Kukan due to the fact the opponent is in a state of confusion, now when you gain a good position to let go of everything and just have yourself and presence in the Kukan; this will create the fear. He will be in a state of fear because he can feel the potential danger but cannot predict or know where the next thing will come from. You are able to do this due to the fact you are free from and not confined by technique. In this state you will again cycle through the CFP until a desired result is reached.

Once you can create these states and use these principles then you will have your opponent doing most of the work. They will start fighting themselves rather then you. They will be too busy trying to stop hurting, start understanding and stop fearing what will happen next to effectively fight you. They have to many battles going on while you are being a ninja and removing yourself from the fight. You will prevail where your opponents own emotions and thoughts are your best weapons.

Watch Sokes movement and then watch his uke, he is always using CFP!

Now just for clarification, Kukan, kyojutsu and kyusho are by no means limited to these basic definitions, in fact they can be quite complex. This is just one way of looking at training and a way to help describe and understand Sokes Taijutsu.

So next time your at training see if can move your uke through the different states using my C.F.P. method and see your taijustu transform.

*(Kyusho is a reference to specific weak points on the body, my definition is a little more ambiguous. I view kyusho as any week or venerable points on body, mind or spirit.)