In this day and age where it seems like everyone and their mother owns a gun, what are some of the applications and uses of Wing Chun? What purpose could it possibly serve? Well, let me tell you: martial arts aren't JUST about self-defense. There is much more to it than that. If there wasn't, then everyone would have stopped going to class as soon as the first automatic weapon came off the production line.

Reason # 6: They Focus on the "Art" in "Martial Arts"

Of all the reasons I have listed, this one is probably the most rare. In fact, I know of maybe three people (at best) who could be said to have done martial arts for this reason. Even then, I am only guessing with one of these folks, based on things I heard someone say about him in interviews. These three would be:

  • Bruce Lee: This should be no surprise, considering how he said martial arts are "the art of expressing the human body."
  • James Coburn: This is the one where I am guessing, based on an interview Bruce Lee gave (with a gentleman named Pierre Burton) where Bruce said Mr. Coburn could appreciate the philosophical side of martial arts.
  • Me: Yep! Just like Bruce, I believe martial arts can be used to express who you are.

Let me make this analogy: when you learn guitar, you play the same chords, notes, and scales that countless others before you have played, yet somehow you find a way to use them in a way that expresses you . When someone hears a song of yours, they can identify it before you sing a single word and without knowing the name of the tune. I believe martial arts are the same way, except instead of playing "chords," you are playing "techniques." Instead of learning scales, you are learning concepts and principles. When you first learn them, you perform them exactly like your Sifu showed you (not unlike the way the first few songs you write will be pale imitations of your favorite songwriters). However, after a while you will put your own spin on them.

That is the idea anyway, and again that is only if you are the type of student who has this goal in mind. Not many do though. Most people just focus on the butt-kicking stuff, and that's okay too. After all, that is the purpose for which the arts were originally made!

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