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  1. badandy is offline

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    Posted On:
    2/23/2005 3:18pm


     

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    You know, I'm not sure I've ever even heard the term "melted baby" before this thread came about.
  2. beka is offline
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    Posted On:
    2/23/2005 3:45pm

    Bullshido Newbie
     Style: BJJ and then some

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by Wounded Ronin
    The best part of all is how thunderingly insignificant it would be even if this guy did discover some old fan form.

    "Hey guys! I found this old form showing in an abstract and stylized manner how people might or might not have assaulted each other with a fan a thousand years ago!"

    What comes to mind is someone showing up at a stickfighting or saber tournament with an old copy of Tallhoffer hoping to magically defeat everyone else just by virtue of a few outdated woodcuts.

    WR brings up a good point, and this thread has caught my folklorisitic eye.

    Folklore is an umbrella term for legends, jokes, dances, foodways, all sorts of stuff. I also will argue that Martial Arts are a form of folklore. It is more difficult to keep MA under the *technical* definitions of folklore these days, because people pay money to learn MA in an official institution. However, this is where forms and legends come in handy.

    First, this fan form. I don't know if there was one or not, and how it got into so-and-so's syllabus. But say there was a fan form that died. What this means is that the fan form lost relevance. Folklore only exists as long as it remains relevant and useful to the folk who utilize it. You'll see this a lot with political jokes. The jokes that used to be told about Nixon are no longer told. Now they are told with Bill Clinton of George W Bush as the main characters, because they are the relevant subjects. So if this fan form existed 1000 years ago, it doesn't now because it lost relevance. So, to dredge it up for shits and giggles would be to imply that it is relevant to today. Whether it lasts or not would be the test to see if it is still relevant.

    This is why I like kata/forms/etc. It's like epic poetry. The Odyssey was an oral poem long before it was ever written down in didactic hexameter (I believe that was the meter, but I could be wrong). The meter of the poem, either way, was *very* specific. A poet may have forgotten bits and pieces here and there, but knowing that the meter had to remain the same, only a certain number of words or phrases could be used in that spot. This is why, when reading the epic, you notice that "rosy fingered dawn" is always used, instead of just saying "it was morning". In order to recall the whole, the bits and pieces had to be specific.

    The analogy isn't perfect, but bear with me. Hopefully, if you practice a kata enough, your muscles will remember what moves went in what spaces. Kata are easy to preserve for that reason. If a style's every move is contained within a kata, it should not be forgotten. These days, this isn't always so necessary, but before Martial Arts were a big business arising in frauds and scams, I will argue that these things were necessary. I don't think we'll see the death of kata right away, but it appears it may be losing relevance.

    As for the various takes on this baby melting/burning/poisoning business, the same theories still hold. These are variants on the same legend (ol' GM went and carelessly harmed a baby with his MA practice). Instead of arguing about which one is true, assume none of them are. They are legends. They are intended to be interpreted as fact, but that doesn't make them so. If I had the resources and the time (this would involve a trip to the library), I GUARANTEE you I could find an even older version of that very same story (exact details may be changed, the martial artist may be a sorcerer or a king or something, and the baby may be a dog or cat).

    Folklore explains everything.
    Now... let's return to our regularly scheduled broadcast...
    :lurk:
  3. edward is offline

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    Posted On:
    2/23/2005 4:18pm


     Style: N/A

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    But the thing you might not realize is that people did use fans. You have to realize that people really fought in China without guns for a long time, and there were a lot of techniques designed to counter things. Like fans were for fighting not just for women, but for nobles. In very hot areas people used fans a lot. Southern China is very hot especially during the summer. Men fought with fans. No joke.

    Also, that poison hand, poison technique. There were assassins that actually poisoned themselves to become poisonous. For example, there were women who took poison over a long period of time. Their bodies built up a tolerance to it, but they could then poison people's food, even eat the same food and survive. There are accounts, which may be myth, that it was possible for a woman over time to become so toxic that if she had sex with a man, that she would kill him.

    People poisoned people all the time. There were assassination attempts. Chopsticks were invented because it was found that ivory changed color in the presence of common poisons. So the emperor and nobles would use ivory chopsticks as an early warning system for poisons.

    Iron sand palm. It is said that they used to put their hands in burning hot sand for hours, so the hands would become rough and calloused and strong. It is a technique in many books (I don't know if it works or not). There are even stories into the 1950s or so of people who had fingertips that were burnt like stumps, who used them to strike. The skin on the outside of the hands actually burnt from the training.

    So it is concievable that if a martial artist was practicing like this, and his hands were very hot, and he accidently picked up the baby? Possible, but not likely.

    So is something like the poisoning baby thing possible? It is possible. But that matters 0% as to if these people practice decent martial arts or not.
  4. beka is offline
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    Posted On:
    2/23/2005 4:23pm

    Bullshido Newbie
     Style: BJJ and then some

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Are you citing Ninja Scroll?

    What I'm asking is, can you back up any of this with academic research? Can you prove it outside of "I heard from a friend..."?
  5. edward is offline

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    Posted On:
    2/23/2005 4:29pm


     Style: N/A

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    You have to do historical research. Like the fan thing, or the chopstick thing, or the iron sand palm thing. I didn't hear that from friends. The poison lady thing I first heard from an old Chinese martial arts guy, and I didn't believe him. But there are a lot of stories in Europe of people slowly gaining immunity to poisons. And then I came across a reference to women assassins who used to supposedly use this technique in some Japanese books. I don't have the references handy, but you can look it up.
  6. edward is offline

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    Posted On:
    2/23/2005 4:30pm


     Style: N/A

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Oh, and in Russia they say that the arsenic miners build up immunity and eventually they eat arsenic to help ward off disease. But that might be a myth as well.
  7. Method2Madness is offline

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    Posted On:
    2/23/2005 4:40pm


     Style: BJJ and MMA

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    i heard of a zoologist who worked with snakes and periodically injected himseld with snake venom to build up an immunity to it. The injections at first made him sick but gradually he became immune to certain snake venoms.
  8. Leodom is offline

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    Posted On:
    2/23/2005 4:42pm


     Style: CMA

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    ....and one time, at band camp......
    People of integrity expect to be believed. When they're not, they let time prove them right.
  9. feedback is offline
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    UAAAH!

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    Posted On:
    2/23/2005 4:47pm

    Join us... or die
     Style: Muay Thai

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by Leodom
    ....and one time, at band camp......
    The bit about snake venoms, and so probably poisons, is true.
    Tough is not how you act, tough is how you train.
  10. bodar is offline

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    Posted On:
    2/23/2005 4:48pm


     Style: none currently, ex-TSK

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by edward
    You have to do historical research. Like the fan thing, or the chopstick thing, or the iron sand palm thing. I didn't hear that from friends. The poison lady thing I first heard from an old Chinese martial arts guy, and I didn't believe him. But there are a lot of stories in Europe of people slowly gaining immunity to poisons. And then I came across a reference to women assassins who used to supposedly use this technique in some Japanese books. I don't have the references handy, but you can look it up.
    Umm, isn't it your job to do research to back up your crazy-ass stories? A scientist doesn't just put out a hypothesis and then tell people that they have to prove it one way or the other. He does the research himself and says, "this is what I found".
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