Monday, 2 August 2010

Relaxing not killing

I've got a lot of time for Benjamin Zephaniah - but I have to say that in  one of the captions for his  photo-story in The Guardian today illustrating a recent trip to China, he reinforces a cliche about the martial arts:   

'I checked myself into a kung fu/t’ai chi school for two weeks. People in the west perceive t’ai chi to be a gentle form of exercise – what they don’t realise is it’s a deadly martial art. This girl is 15 and a t’ai chi master – she could kill someone within a moment if she wanted to...'

It's all been said before... technique triumphs over force, what appears gentle actually kicks ass, blah blah blah. We all know the potential for maximizing the effectiveness of physical violence so how about a different take ? :

'These guys are the best of friends and they're really just having fun together. One is a scholar and the other a successful businessman much-respected in his community.  Their training helps  maintain their mental health when coping with the stresses of daily life. They don't want to kill anybody':

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