Wednesday, September 04, 2013

Pencak Silat: Combat or More?

For some, the pencak silat is a hobby. It's something we do for fun, or exercise, or social interaction. It may even be a drive we have to feel safe or generate self-confidence.

To me, and hopefully the students and instructors I raise, I hope they see it as more....

When I talk about attributes and attribute development within Pencak Silat Pertempuran I’m talking about more than just physical attributes. Of course, those are very important, things such as speed, endurance, quickness, reach, timing, strong side, mobility, etc. 

The more often overlooked components are things such as emotional and mental attribute development. 

Apart from the need to use the physical attributes you develop during times of physical crisis, and self or community protection, it’s the emotional and mental attributes that take martial arts from a hobby, exercise, or something fun to do just for the sake of it, and give value to everyday life.

Attributes such as patience, will, and determination may seem like obvious traits that would develop over the course of training, but other attributes include things such as self-reflection/evaluation, centeredness, adaptability, respect, and trust are some other examples. 

The majority of us already have an amount of these attributes when we start PSP. Some more than others. PSP when truly studied will continue to grow these as well, challenging you along the way incrementally.

To see it, let’s look at a quick example. When you’re training, do you trust what you’re being taught? Do you trust the teacher? Did you start off fully trusting the teacher or the art, or has that trust grown over time and with the input of energy from you and the teacher? It’s likely that it’s been a process. 

You may even find that if you do not yet fully trust the art or the teacher. That’s normal. As a point of caution, to see the greatest value from your training, you must work through that and learn why you do not fully trust and then take steps to rectify that. One way would be to ask questions, which will develop another mental attribute in the desire to learn—it’s a path of connection and relationship. Relationship to one another and relationship amongst attributes.

Now, I challenge you to take the lessons you are learning in study of Pencak Silat Pertempuran and apply them to your everyday life!

Hormat Saya,


Andrew Ewing said...

Guru Stark,
This reminds me of the many discussions we've had about "faith" in fighting. When you're in the mix and the going gets tough do you revert, or keep the "Faith?"

Robert "Hugo" Hutchinson said...

I've always reverted...But, for me, that's been the Magic of PSP; From our discussions of the "Oh Shit!" handle, I took the idea of reactionary flow...or something, lol! What I mean is that, I'm gonna fight the way I fight, but through PSP I can practice fluidity OUT of the screwy positions I get myself into! It's not so much that I "Fight a refined PSP", but that "PSP can refine my Fight"!

Anonymous said...

silat would be more effective as martial art if filled with 'jurus' and 'ilmu nafas'.
if not, it just another gangnam style.

Sean Stark said...

Anonymous... Not sure what your point is. Jurus are great if you can apply them, otherwise, just another set of movements. Ilmu Nafas is good, if you can apply it, otherwise no better than gangam as well.