While on the subject of Modern Arnis…

Appeared on Bladeforums and MartialTalk (cross-posting):

my advice for our modern arnis brothers
one of the big problems with the martial artist is his ego and his pride. loyalty is something people dont know anything about today, and martial artists with all of their pride and inflated ego, they suffer from low self esteem. you know what i mean.

you have the privelege of being under the most recognize arnis player in the world, and he has created something that no other martial art expert can do, and this is to bring all of his people under his wing, and everybody knows the same thing, everybody knows where they are in the family (rank), and when the great remy presas dies he lets you know who is your leader. many eskrima families do not have this benefit, to know a clear lines as to who is the most respected one in your style, and a clear lines as to what you need to do to move up.

by the way do not mourn over your fallen father, he is only preparing to return to HIS father. instead you celebrate and remember to feel good about the time you had him here in this world.

now that manong presas has told you who is the new leader of modern arnis remy presas style, you give him all the respect you would give to your teacher. stand behind his back, or else you tell the memory of remy presas that he did not make a good decision.

don’t let people talk bad about remy presas or his way. and you dont be guilty of fighting with your brother over modern arnis business in public, like some of these other styles. let modern arnis become just as strong as it was when he walked on this earth.

get together to decide how everyone can make remy presases modern arnis the strongest in the world. I only have about 100 students and i expect them to know a plan now, and i am still alive. but for you guys, remy presas WAS modern arnis, and the few representatives we saw tried to “new and improve” modern arnis, or broke away to do his own thing. but since remy is gone, you have to make a good showing.

do not let remy presases modern arnis become like tae kwon do, with so many grandmasters and veresions that claim to be superior over the other one, even thogh they are all the same.

decide how you will treat variation of modern arnis, it does not have to be a bad one, but remy presas is the source, so he should be remembered not “blended” and forgotten.

if one of your brothers leaves to bad mouth the rest, or challenged the memory of your teacher (and you will have to decide when this happens), you challenge that guy to shut him up, or modern arnis will become like tracy kenpo, ed parker kenpo, yip man’s wing chun, even though they all came from one man. but when it happens you make sure the world knows modern arnis did not stand for that.

be very quick to act, because the death of a leader can unite a group or tear it apart.

i guess i dont know what i am talking about
here is from remy presas son, who is having a hard time from people who say tim hartmen is more qualify to run modern arnis that him:

“Did it take you that long to think those words over . O’ my you must be really one of a kind. you are the type of person that makes the art go bad!!!! I really feel sory for you . we’re not here to take over anything and Tim Hartman knows that . but if you really want to find out how good We Are come see US Please IN FULL CONTACT ARNIS ONLY . you’ll see how a Presas moves , you migth learn something new . BY THE WAY HOW MANY SEMENARS DID YOU GO BEFORE YOU GOT YOUR BLACK-BELT 5 TO 10 HUH !!!!! MUST BE REALLY EASY . JUST GO TO A SEMINAR GET A BELT . ARE YOU AWERE THAT IT SHOULD TAKE YOU 10 YEARS TO REACH BLACK OR 1ST DAN AND FOR EVERYONES INFO WE DID GO TO HIS SEMINAR. HE NEVER WANTED US TO TELL OUR REALLY LAST NAMES. NOW WE KNOW WHY , HE DID NOT WANT US TO SAY OUR REALLY LAST NAMES . PERSON’S LIKE YOU JUDGE SO EASY YOU DONT EVEN KNOW US , ONLY A HAND PICKED OF PERSONS REALLY KNEW OUR FATHER . SO DONT SPEAK FOR HIM . THERE ARE MANY THINGS ABOUT OUR FAMILY AND HIM THAT YOU DONT .YOU WANT TO FIND OUT THE TRUTH SEE ME OR ASK TIM FOR MY NO. HE KNOWS IT , IT DOSE NOT MATTER WHO LEADS IF YOUR FILIFINO OR AMERICAN WHAT MATTERS IS YOUR LOVE FOR THE ART .CALL ME WILL TALK OR SPAR ,HOW EVER YOU WANT

DPRESAS
MARPPIO/USMC”

this came from www.martialtalk.com people there are crying about who is the grandmaster of modern arnis, delany is better than hartman, hartmen is better than delany, if mr. presas’s son is so good how come he doesnt teach seminars, etc.

now if arnis of remy presas does not learn to share information and let ONE man, take the direction of modern arnis, remy presas is onnly going to be a name in history, and the name of only “remy presas modern arnis” will be a style only in the philippines. everyone else will have “bram’s modern arnis new and improve” “delaney modern arnis new and improved” and so on.

lose your egos, or settle who is the big butok by PROVING IT NOT ARGUING IT.

i got many emails about my comment, so i dont care about answering each one. i will do it here for them and to clear up my intention.

i am not a student of remy presas, i dont care to gain anything from this. like my titles says i am only wanting to give some advice.

when remy was alive, you didnt question him even when you might disagree with something. he was very strong and everyone know who is the boss. now that he is gone, you disrespect him when you argue with his decision about who is in charge. modern arnis cannot grow when everybody is trying to make his own self look good and chop down each other in the same family. many of you are “exploring and blending” but you dont even have the background and experience and maturity to say so arrogantly “i am improving remy art”. this is disrepsectful to him and his art, like a 10 year old kid who is going to change the rules his father made for him.

if you are doing what is called the FILIPINO art, then understand the FILIPINO culture. we do not care about rank. we do not run out and become teachers after learning for only 3 years. we judge a man skill by the skill that he PROVE he has, not what does he know. what you know doesnt mean nothing, its what can you do. and if you are talking FIGHING, we are not talking about how much coordeination do you have or can you improvise this drill or that drill, but CAN YOU FIGHT. men who go out and teach have fought many matches for his teacher and the rest of the martial art community, and this is how he gets the respect of the people, not how many students does he have or how many tape he got.

remy’s mountain was strong because the base is wide but it grows up to a small point, where only one man can stand, and this way the mountain cannot turn or fall over. what i see now, and i saw it then, is the top has too many points, and that lowers the mountain and makes it hard to look up to and one day, it will be level just like the ground, very soon.

already i see and heard from very old stduents of modern arnis in the philippines who have no respect for the western students, and western students who have no respect for the pilipino students, even the children of remy (because they dont see them doing seminar). now what does this do to everything he work so hard to build? you want respect? then prove you deserve it. if not then shut up and let the leader do his job. but for a nobody student to challenge the decision of the teacher who is no longer here makes only one person look foolish, except that one person is many, and they affect the rest of the family.

dont email me anymore, i am finish with other people’s business.

i just wanted to say that some of the things i said out of ingorance because i didnt know much about modern arnis, remy presas. like about the (i thought) new head of modern arnis, jeff delaney. but my intentions are good, and that is to give good advice to modern arnis brothers. modern arnis is on the fence of respect and ridicule, and this generation will determine which side modern arnis falls to. in my opinion the way its going, modern arnis will end up like tae kwon do, some good schools, but mostly mcdojos. especially when it comes to eccess rankings and easy rankings. people already talk bad about modern arnis.

i really believe your get together in new york can build modern arnis USA into a strong organization. if there is a board that tests all the black belters from modern arnis, you will be able to control and identify all the true experts of the art, and prove which ones do not deserve the rank. but in order for that to happen, you will need 99% participation. or else, modern arnis will be like jeet kune do, you have your way, i have mine, and even the phony will be able to claim his own way. come on you guys you already have one out there.

if there is ONE black belt test each year, who will argue that this guy doesnt deserve the belt? you will have all the candidates there, and a group of people who can control the quality of who gets what, and how long it takes. the doubting tom, can put his own boys out there to stop whoever it is from passing his test. if the test is hard enough, the public will really respect the black belter, look at kyosho of the philippines, or kyukushinkai of hawaii? 100 man fight test? wow, i am impressed. if somebody wants a 4th degree, get out there and show your family that you deserve it, no more of these secret surprise promotions. differences of opinion? settle it like gentleman in discussion face to face.

there is no harm to join the rest of the family. shoot you can even vote for the new leader of modern arnis like you get a new president! this is not for any one person ego, its for the family. dont be the one or two guys who moves away and then talk about how stupid those guys are (i am the real deal around here), you might end up looking like the wierdo.

okay back to the subject. modern arnis needed to have a single family, even if it is a single family of many organizations. but spread out, you become like kool aid with too much water, weak.

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I have my own path/for Modern Arnis Guro

This post originally showed up on MartialTalk, and can serve as several lessons in one “lecture”. It seems preachy, but we are talking about one martial arts leader addressing others (some other “leaders” as well). Take what you will from it… it was a great post:

i have my own “path”

i see something in american martial arts that they dont realize they are doing something very filipino, but consider it is “american”.first let me say that i think its because most americans come to the philippine martial arts through another style, mostly japanese karate or korean tae kwon do. when they study the FMA part time, they will probably skip over the culture and philosophy and custom, and learn technique only. so what happened is, they look at the philippine martial arts through japanese or korean eyes.

i am following the modern arnis threads, of what now, since remy is gone. this is always been interested to me, because all my students are here, yet my brother and sister are still not very “active” teaching and competing. i would think in 50 years, it will probably be my family, and i am not planning to see the same thing happen to us.

in the philippines, what you learn from your teacher will be your own art, even though this teacher will always be one of your teachers, and your classmates will always be your brothers and sisters. some will take another name for the style, some wont. but they are all family, although some people will have there own techniques. if you look at the hinigran eskrima and balintawak of eskrima where remy was once a member, through remy, it is now called “modern/presas style arnis”. but his classmates will always call him, brother. so to have your own style is nothing new, and its not being different, its expected.

the problem, then, is allowing yourself to call your seniors your senior. all of my cousins are my senior both in my family, and the martial arts. i learned from our grandfather after they stopped, some of them were 20 years before me, but when i see them, they are still senior, and i still listen. am i suppose to think that i cannot learn from them, because they graduated before me? am i suppose to think i know more, since i studied with him longer? or because i still trained with him after they stopped? no, i can always learn from my seniors, even if my training was “updated” from their’s, because they been around longer, and saw more than i did. i have met old arnisador and eskrimadors, who, i am sure i know more techniques. i was with my teachers for over 20 years, and they were probably with theres for 3. but there eyes have forgotten more than mine ever saw, and i need to understand that i am junior, and i know that i cannot learn and teach, hear and talk at the same time.

so what, you have your own path? so you think your a grandmaster now? because you made your own style? your teacher dies so no one else can teach you? you dont want to call anyone else a senior, and be “under” him? may i remind some of you, that if you dont leave your own comfortable house, you will never know what else is out there, and you will have no way to find out, how much your know, or how much you dont know.

“MY OWN PATH” is the young man’s way of telling more knowledgeable people, to shut up i dont want to hear you and you cant teach me anything. this is an excuse, that you have no humility and if it didnt come from my ears listening to my teacher say it, i wont hear it. i am better than you because i knew him this last 20 years, so your knowledge is old and outdated. the only senior i recognize are the ones i know, since the main man is dead, no one else can lead me.

so when your teacher dies, his work dies with him, because no one is willing to see the flame stayed lit, and everybody wants to have his own light. some of you are not experience and knowledgeable enough to make your own path. this is how mcdojos get made. not only because people are greedy, but many of them are too arrogant and close minded to learn more. in the philippine martial arts, you stand on your own feet, when you have fought a lot of opponents, so that your knowledge is large and your experience is plenty. but if you havent faced too many opponents, then you will need more than one teacher because you only draw a small percentage of each teacher’s lessons and experiences. edgar sulite had many teachers. dan inosanto had many teachers. remy roberto and ernesto presas had many teachers. do you put yourself on there level? how many years do you have in this art, that you claim to be an expert of? how many lessons have you have? can you teach somebody full time for 4 years on your FMA knowledge?

part of having your own path is, being able to follow someone elses first.

NEW INFORMATION! The section following was addressing Guro’s opinions about Modern Arnis (Remy Presas) teachers who refused to follow or align with neither GM Presas’ brother Ernesto nor his son, Remy Jr… both of whom are excellent Masters. There were some hurt feelings, and most were answered privately (and respectfully, Guro adds):

for modern arnis practitioners.

i am disturbed at the arrogance and rudeness many of you have for your seniors, and anybody else who makes a suggestion for you.

1. “you dont know modern arnis, you cant comment on us”
2. “ok, you are modern arnis, but you are not modern arnis USA”
3. “okay, your modern arnis, but you didnt study with master presas for the last 20 years, you didnt train for the last 20 years”
4. “well, you didnt train with PROF. PRESAS for the last 20 years”
5. “well, you only trained with him 6 times in the last 20 years”
6. “to hell with you, prof presas told me ____”
7. “why should i follow you? i dont know you!”

story.
your father died, your a kid. your mom is gone too. your uncle showed up, who you never met. is he still your uncle? if he loved you and will take care of you, and tell you all about your family and teach you how to grow up, and whatever else he knows…will you go live with him?

modern arnis needs a family. everybody is to busy promoting himself, and theres not enough people who just wants to push presas arnis, only “mike’s presas arnis” and “tom’s presas arnis”. some of these people have only learned one or two styles of arnis, and probably no matches in the art. so it weakened with one generation, what do you think will happen in 5 generations from now? already, there is a chance for modern arnis to get a little family love going around (in new york), but everyone is afriad they will boost up somebody else’s reputation or create a leader in the family. everyone can still have his organization, and belong to the family of “Modern arnis, USA”. but the seniors of modern arnis cant even post about each other without saying one insult or saying “i am closer to professor than the rest of you bozos”. so now, a student of modern arnis cannot learn each piece you got from the art, instead he has to chose which piece and interpretation he is going to have. what is the use of a big organization, if you dont get the benefit of learning from each kuya (older brother) in the organization?

those of you who are not going to the symposim in new york should send a representative, if you want modern arnis to be taken seriously, especially by modern arnis students. my teacher is part of a large family of martial artists (strong, well known family) verses my teacher made his own organization of modern arnis, along with 10 other people who made there own too (kenpo/tkd/jkd/you name it mcdojo franchises).

modern arnis only florished as one family, with a clear group of seniors. but in little peices all over the world, its just another name like tae kwon do. take a look at my post “for my modern arnis brothers.”

If you’d like to read the original post, you can find it here. Like with many threads Guro posts, there isn’t much to do but sit back, shut up, and read!