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The martial arts landscape is one paved in dogma. I was fortunate in that when I was young, my father coaxed me, not ungently at times, toward the habit of critical thinking. And that, coupled with a few ‘reality checks’ in the real world - had me questioning the status quo, even before my 20’s.
I came to understand that, in the same way a fanatical religious zealot refuses to hear or entertain the beliefs of people from other religions, martial artists of one discipline similarly refused to entertain the effectiveness or usefulness of another system. This really irked me. So, in my own fumbling way, I tried to tease out the more practical elements from a variety of systems and cobble them into a more useful construct. The results of my efforts were varied and amateurish much of the time - but the underlying thinking was always clear and to this day, hasn’t wavered.