Origin of Kenpo Karate
Setting History Right
    Kenpo Karate 1949-1954
    Kenpo Karate 1954-1956
    Ed Parker BYU Judo Dojo
    Kenpo Karate 1956-1959
    The Blackbelted Mormon
    Kenpo Karate 1960-1962
    Kenpo Karate 1962-1964
    Tercell's Kenpo Emblem
   1965 and Beyond
Ed Parker's First Shodan
Founding of the IKKA
Other Black Belts
Kenpo Seniority
Stillness of Movement

The Way of Kenpo
The 9 Principles
    Do Not Think Dishonestly
    The Way is in Training
    Every Art
    Intuitive Judgment
    Pay Attention to Trifles
    Do Nothing Useless

Yang Cheng-fu Tai Chi
Bong Soo Han As I Knew Him
Kenpo Karate Training
Michael Chong
Apology to Ralph Castro
Jewel Shepard

CONTACT: Kenpo Contact

Way of Miyamoto Musashi and Kenpo
Become Acquainted With Every Art

Will Tracy

The soft flowing hands of Tai Chi Chuan, are not unlike the brush stroke of the calligrapher, the movement of the sword, or the strike of the Kenpo master. Each is an art, and each teaches the student a different perspective. However, the student must first know his own art, and the student must distinguish what was art at the time of Musashi from that which is called art today. He must understand not only the techniques for attack and defense, but he must practice them and become skilled in every facit of Kenpo.

I had the good fortune of having the great musical composer, Bronislaw Kaper, as one of my close friends. His music compositions set the themes for hundreds of movies, yet his art extended to the saber which he learned and became Poland's Junior Saber Champion in the early 20th Century. Kenpo was an extension of these arts and as Bronie watched the new music arts deviate from the classics to undisciplined popularity, he declared to me that people, like their music lose their way. Then as he saw Kenpo deviate from the Way he told me he saw the very essence of Kenpo dissipate into absurdity.

Bronie and I watched one day as our Kenpo master demonstrated a new staff set one of his students had created. Bronie picked up a staff and watched as the master moved and twirled the staff, then as the master approached, Bronie moved his own staff just slightly and sent the staff of the master flying out of his hands. Bronie was greatly disappointed by what had happened and told me that when an inept student is better than the master, art is debased. Kenpo, like Tai Chi and classic music is, "boundless as the sea and sky," yet when any art is narrowed by lack of knowledge or technique it deviates from the Way. Likewise, to become acquainted with every art is, a broad principle that the student must train in the Way in order to master strategy.

The student cannot know Kenpo if his teacher does not know Kenpo, or is inept. Nor can one know a few Kenpo techniques and really know Kenpo. This can best be seen in the Chinese Kung Fu styles. Each style was developed to defeat the master of another style. But in order to do this, the master of the style, the one who created it, first had to know the style he wanted to defeat. It is axiomatic that the best swordsman in all of France never feared the second best swordsman, because he knew everything the latter knew. No, what he feared was the swordsman he did not know, the one who had not trained in the schools in which he trained.

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©1996, 1999, 2006, 2015 by W. Tracy. All rights reserved. No portion may be reproduced without permission.

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