Diary of a Network Geek

The trials and tribulations of a Certified Novell Engineer who's been stranded in Houston, Texas.


Martial Arts Fakers

Filed under: Fun,Movies — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Hare which is terribly early in the morning or 6:30 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waxing Crescent

Mystic martial arts hoaxers.

To be fair, I think these people do at least partially believe that this is real.
If you’re my age, you probably remember the ads in the back of comic books promising martial arts skills and near magic powers via correspondence courses, or even a single book or pamphlet. As a kid, a skinny kid who was often bullied in one way or another, I wished those things were true. As a slightly older kid and an adult, I knew they weren’t really true. I think a part of me still wanted to believe them, but, by the time I was in college, I knew they weren’t anything more than wishful thinking. Or, maybe, at best, a metaphor for a way of looking at how the martial arts fit into a larger world. And, don’t get me wrong, there are a lot of things about martial arts I really love. But, like anything that’s popular and been around for a long time, there are plenty of people looking to take advantage.
So, today, in that spirit, I bring you The Bizarre World of Fake Martial Arts. It’s about 30 minutes and worth every second. It starts by looking at some of the stranger, and funnier, fake martial artists from the 70’s and goes all the way to the Chinese MMA fighter showing that all too many of the modern Chinese martial arts masters are, well, not quite able to deliver on some of their promises to potential students. There’s a lot packed into a 30 minute video and I’m grateful to Boing Boing for bringing it to my attention. And, now yours.


This post originally appeared on Use Your Words!



Filed under: Criticism, Marginalia, and Notes,Deep Thoughts,Life, the Universe, and Everything,Personal,Things to Read — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Hare which is in the early morning or 7:23 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waxing Gibbous

Right now, I’m reading Zohar: The Book of Splendor: Basic Readings from the Kabbalah edited by Gershom Scholem.

It’s a relatively short book, actually, but fairly challenging. It looks at the Kabbalah in brief and tantalizing detail. As a non-Jew, it’s an interesting look at the more hidden meanings behind Jewish scripture. Though, to be honest, I think there are many Jews who don’t know much about the Kabbalah, much the same way many Christians don’t know much about the Book of Revelations.
The allegorical meanings of seemingly simple verses open whole new worlds of thought for me. The explanation of the creation story in mythic terms reveals whole new vistas of meaning and nuance. It has effected me in a profound and deep way. New spiritual possibilities have been opened to me. I don’t normally get into that kind of personal stuff on this site, but it’s really made me think about some things.

These are troublesome days, I think. The economy is in doubt. There is war and violence in the world which, no matter how justifiable, is always a little frightening. My life is in a constant state of flux and doubt. So, where do I turn for help in sorting things out? Toward a spiritual source of comfort. And, these days, I don’t limit myself to the Bible. So, I’m reading a book on the Kabbalah and, sometimes, I go to 365 Zen : Daily Readings to find inspiration. Sometimes, I just sit by our ponds and try to listen for whatever voice may come out of the vastness of the Universe to help me.

In any case, my point is that I’m trying to enrich my spiritual life so that the rest of my life doesn’t seem as frightening and doubtful. So far, it’s helped.

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