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Karate, Yin and Yang and Mother Nature


Yin and Yang, The sea and the land

Karate, Yin and Yang:

Karate, comes from the Far East and is strongly imbued with Chinese philosophy Yin and Yang, this duality or rather complementarity that we find in everything.

It is often said that Karate is both the quiet force of the mountain and the never-ending stream of waves, it is the reed that bends under the wind, the wind that rushes into the pines ...

In short, karate is a clever combination of Yin and Yang; hard and soft; contraction and relaxation; the fluidity of the water, which seems harmless and yet so penetrating, encircling, even aggressive; the strength of the mountain that seems at once powerful and very calm and serene.

Karate and mother nature:

On vacation by the sea, I promised myself not to do karate (and I did not!), But I could not help thinking about it and as a good poet that I am (yes, if, sometimes ;-)) to see it in all the elements that make up the Mediterranean coastline.

So instead of sending you a postcard (he had no longer enough stamp in the mail :-)), I took out the camera and you filmed some very short scenes of Mother Nature.

  • Observe the sea that constantly comes to whip the rocks. Sometimes she seems to calm down and settle down. But, as a carpet in the shadows, it looks like she is watching to better leap and attack more beautifully. The rocks are very stable and calm cashing the blows without flinching, but still make the water squirt in all directions. Who of water or rock will win the duel?
  • Watch how the wind rushes into the pines (Being rather Shotokan, I could not help but shoot the wind in the pines Which is the translation of " Shoto", Pseudonym under which Master Funakoshi wrote Chinese poems in his youth). He passes on all sides, looking for a fault to break and bend. But the pine does not break, it dodges constantly, sweeping its branches in all directions to let the wind pass which suddenly has no hold.
  • Notice how the reed bends under the wind, not trying to fight against the strength of his opponent but using it to change its shape and position. By folding, the reed literally lets the wind flow on it. The latter will never succeed in uprooting it.

In karate, in your everyday life, as in nature, strength is not always the best solution facing attacks of all kinds.

Often, the calm of the rock which nevertheless shows its power; the dodge of the pine tree, which stands proudly in the air, or the humility of the reed in front of the stronger than it, is much preferable to confrontation and retaliation.

That's it, it was my postcard to me

See you soon,

PS: I hope that one day I will go see tigers in Kenya, that should inspire me also In the meantime, leave me a comment below.

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  1. Trackback: Contraction and relaxation in the martial arts!

  2. Hello Bruno,
    Your article is very interesting and I find it great. I like to train at home but as soon as I can, I practice karate directly in nature, it's a good crazy. So, for me, it's easier to concentrate and enjoy karate with its relationship to the elements.
    Your video, even if it is in the Mediterranean makes me think of my home, Brittany..and in my club, some times outings training on the beach are organized, I think it's great.
    Thank you again for your videos and this blog very much appreciated.

  3. A very good article again.

    This symbol, the Taiji, represents perfect unity, being and non-being. The balance.
    It is clear that to understand the essence of martial arts, it is more than interesting to be interested in this concept.

    I totally changed my way of practicing the day I took these subtleties.

    Sorry Bruno, but I'll add a little more (you'll find me hard to force)
    The Chinese, in their Tao culture, do not say "Yin and Yang", but "Ying Yang".
    We can not dissociate them with an "and".

    In any case, thank you for giving the opportunity to your readers to discover this. It's so important.

  4. Marina Ana Vrabec at

    Hello Bruno,
    I hope you had a good time on vacation. I see you and the poetic mood. Waves of the sea and lead to mental relaxation, to motivate and lead us to the heavenly heights.
    Yin and Yang living contradiction. The level of power to masculine and feminine energies.
    Yin and Yang dualism is the opposite of each other: God and the devil, light and darkness, truth and lies, men and women,
    In reality, there are no higher divisions of good and evil, he very well. It is considered evil, not awareness and defense against a non-existent threat. In reality, continue to be one of the highest principles, men and women, as two aspects of the same reality.
    Monist reality is not bad and darkness, there is only God and light. God does not need the devil aspect that could exist, the truth must not lie, love does not need to hate.

    • Hello Marina,
      Yes, thank you, I had a good holiday.
      I see that the duality of Yin and Yang inspires you. Every thing, every being, every feeling is torn between Yin and Yang to be one. But Yin and Yang are necessary together. Never one without the other. Good can not exist without evil as Love would not exist without hatred.
      The debate is open. All to your feathers ...

  5. Hi Bruno,
    nice your video, it reflects indeed a lot of things in the martial art (and the life of ts days too)
    besides, the real birth of judo (or of its reflection rather) is very old and emanates from a wise man (doctor I think) who observing the snow which fell on the branches of the trees, branches which did not yield under the weight snow, for they bent without breaking to let the snow fall from this observation, the way of suppleness;

    I wrote you a few days ago on his site!

  6. Thank you Bruno for this nice video that recalls how the elements and nature, are the foundations of martial arts, some even drawing on gestures (I think Kung Fu especially with its animal-based styles: Mantis, monkey, crane ....).

    By cons, to inspire tigers in Kenya, it will be more difficult .... unless you go to a zoo

    Sports friendships,

  7. Thank you Bruno.
    I will not repeat all that has been said above, but just that I took advantage of your beautiful video to do a Qi-Qong session. It lends itself very well.
    Unlike you, and thanks to you, I trained every day even 2 times a day. Thanks again.

  8. Hello Bruno,
    I hope you have rested well, a shame because you have not had too good weather.
    Congratulations for your text and your video.
    You know I think to be at the edge of the sea, in front of this immensity with the calm before the tourist season one can meditate, that sometimes happens to me when I sin on the beaches at dawn.
    Could you tell me where you were if it's not indiscreet because I
    am from Toulon.
    Best regards.

  9. Congratulations and thank you for this video ... Everything is there, including the musical background. But me who know a little the Mediterranean to have WindSurfed at the club La Ciotat during my years of passion, I could not locate the site ... I'm upset.

  10. Hello Bruno,

    Thank you for the first message before the holidays, super nice. And thank you for this one as well as the little video. I hope you were able to rest and meditate as you wish. You are very good philisopher, which proves your value as karateka (excellent).
    I'm not in a club since 1981. But I still love this Martial Art. If the physical is no longer part of the mind has always remained. Life has made me unable to practice, I train with your videos just for me. Thank you for sharing your knowledge.

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