Thursday, November 06, 2008

Djuru Three

Those of you who are not Silat Sera folks can skip this posting. I'll try to explain in general what I'm doing and why, but it probably won't make much sense if you don't already know the sequence and why it works.

Still here? Okay.

In a recent discussion with a silat player who studied another branch of our art -- same system, different teacher -- the question came up about which djurus (short forms) would be the "deepest," (which I took to be the most useful) if we eliminated the first two forms, Djuru #1 and #2.

A slight digression: We have eighteen of these short dances. All of them are based either upon the first or second ones we learn, i.e., they begin with Djuru #1 or Djuru #2, and then add pieces.

For us, the upper-body tools we believe we need for efficient fighting motions are all found in the djurus.

Legwork comes from a different part of the system, the langkas. In practice, they are usually done together, the hand- and foot-work, though that isn't required. You can do most of the djurus sitting in a chair.

The first two forms are the most important. Using the moves in them, you can probably take care of most of what you are apt to run into from somebody trying to punch, elbow, or kick you, and there are applications for groundwork and grappling, as well. Lot of material in them.

They are all useful, but I have a real fondness for a section of Djuru #3.

In the centerpiece of Djuru #3 is the move demonstrated in the vid, assuming it comes through. Very simple, but also very elegant. Of the dozen or so principles we think are important to learn from djuru practice, this simple move probably covers more than half of them. There's a lot more going on there than meets the eye, concerning highline, lowline, cutting the centerline, near-far, push-pull, backup ...

In fighting, simple is generally better than complicated. In the epinepherinic heat of a serious set-to, with the fight-or-flight syndrome apt to be in full battle mode, complex small motions suffer. That double-back-flip-twisting-triple-strike-and-kick technique that works so well in the gym will almost surely go south when your ass is on the line, so chances are very good that you will fall back on basics.

This is one of ours.


Steve Perry said...

And, after fourteen years of doing the djurus low and slow, Guru Plinck has deemed it that we can speed up the punches, and make them more realistic by factoring in the pukulan aspect. Same djurus, but with a slightly different focus. "Punch like you mean it," is the way he puts it.

I do think at times in that class that my head might explode ...

Oregonbean said...

Santiago and I were taking about circles in the Juru's and we started analyzing the opposite circles of different Jurus. For Juru 3 the opposite might be the end of Juru 12. Thinking this way of circles and pulling out gross movements has helped me flow.


steve-vh said...

I've always considered myself to have a pretty advanced vocabulary. Used to have running stump me contests with my son (he started winning at 13 which shows his IQ) and piss off my wife.
But epenepherinic? Thanks for making us non-writers feel somehow inadequate.
And dispite what Bobbe says, he doesn't know it either I bet.

Bobbe Edmonds said...

I know what "Epinephrine" is, since I wrote the "Fight or Flight" article that addresses it and fully understand the causes and effects of adrenaline. I can only assume that "epenepherinic" has something to do with manipulation of the Endocrine system. However, I have never heard the word before, and I feel that Steve is somehow...Cheating. Like my use of the word "Decimate", for example.

Say it ain't so, Steve.

Worg said...

Yes, I'm still totally here.

I think I am going to be gravitating more to serak, I just can't do the low harimau any more. I actually know most of these jurus, I just have to make up my own buah for most of them which is ok with me, but whatever the heck I'm doing it isn't serak. Seems to work ok though.

I have a few really simple principles that I've used over the years, which are basically just ways of sort of recursively adding in more strikes of various sorts into a basic movement as ways of reinterpreting different juru movements.

Anything that you have along these lines would be very interesting to me.

Steve Perry said...

Turning a noun into an adjective, adverb, or verb is a time-honored activity. Woods are full of 'em.

"Google" the noun has become "google" the verb. "Spam" the canned meat morphed into a couple of nouns and a verb. "The spammers spammed my email box with spam ..."

How evocative are the phrases, "He spidered up the wall." Or "He ratted her out." Compared to "He climbed up the wall like a spider." or "He revealed her part in the crime."?

"Galaxy" begat "galactic." "Poem," "poetic." "Cinema," gave us "cinematic."

I've always liked "heepish," from Uriah Heep -- not the band, but the Dicken's Copperfield character. Don't see it used much these days in post-literate society, but it's a great word.

I make up planets, characters, and words from whole cloth all the time -- spetsdod, holoproj, (and thus the wonderful-sounding word holoprojic.) Radiopathic is another one I like. I think I made that one up.

Re-jiggering existing words? Too easy.

Bobbe Edmonds said...


Oh, for fuck's sake...

Worg, as to Harimau: I've always felt it was a younger man's game, like Monyet. Older people can do it, of course, but the physical demands of the system tend to burn one out quickly, and keeping up with necessary stretching and cardio work will eat up more and more of your training time.

You can modify Harimau to fit your personal movement style, however. Pa Herman did it, and although he took some flack for doing so, his Harimau was a lot more accessible for us mere mortals than most of the classical stuff.

Personally, I have an aversion to systems that are overly acrobatic, or require the practitioner to be hyper flexible or super strong. If a sensible workout and cardio routine isn't enough to support your combat system, it's time to look elsewhere.

Or re-jigger it to suit you. Like the English language.

Just my two cents.

Worg said...

"You can modify Harimau to fit your personal movement style, however. Pa Herman did it, and although he took some flack for doing so, his Harimau was a lot more accessible for us mere mortals than most of the classical stuff."

That frightens me, because what I am exposed to is the Pa Herman stuff. My instructor can do things that might literally land me in the care of an osteopath if I tried them.

I'm pretty brokedown for late 30s.

Some of the monyet throws are great to learn even though I can't really practice them, because they give you really interesting ideas. I'm sure I could probably pull them off on the street and they're just so weird that nobody would ever expect them.

Bobbe Edmonds said...

Time of exposure is an important factor as well. If you didn't START Harimau in your early to mid 20's AT THE LATEST, then you are training in the deficit, in my opinion. As I said, it's a younger man's game.

Don't do things you will only have a narrow window of time to peak at. Work systems and techniques that you can carry with you later in life with a degree of skill.

Worg said...

What I am best at is FMA-style trapping. Whatever else I learn, I try to work in I'll be picking up a ground game again starting soon for the first time in 15 years.

I think harimau stuff is great to know, some of it, but there's no way I'm diverolling in between peoples' legs and kicking them in the back of the neck with my heel on the way through, it just wouldn't work for a variety of reasons.

From all that, I'm much more interested in the methods of kicking from the ground position. If I tried sempok/depok nowadays, the "pok pok" is the sound my patellas would make hitting the wall.

Any suggestions of other alirans that I could look at that are almost completely upright and that might be possible to break up by modules?

steve-vh said...

"Re-jiggering existing words"?
There I go trusting a lauded, published writer to use correct English. Why, just today when I picked up the new Deitz book, who's commentary was on the jacket?

My profound apologies Bobbe. How could either of us anticipate or fathom the jiggering possibilities.

Steve Perry said...

The post literate generation speaks. Larry and Curly do literary criticism.

Hey, I got your English right here, a whole jigger full ...

steve-vh said...

Ouch, OK
But I admitted I expected you to have better vocab. Mushtaq is constantly enlightening me.

(as I write this, the word verification is "aping") Hmmmmm

Steve Perry said...

Thing is, I have to use words my audience can understand, and since I know you and Bobbe come round, I keep it simple ...

steve-vh said...

Nyuk, nyuk, nyuk.

Steve Perry said...

So, you had plenty of time. Did anybody bother to look up "rejigger," and notice that 1) it is a perfectly valid word that I didn't make up, and 2) I used it correctly?

No? Well, plan on staying after school for detention, boys ...

Bobbe Edmonds said...

Y'know, I left South Carolina so's I could avoid using such literary droppings "Bo", double negatives in accepted conversation, i.e. "Ain't got none" or "Don't have no" and of course, that socially uplifting euphemism, "Y'all".

So to throw "Rejigger" in the mix, correct or not...BOTHERS ME.

Steve Perry said...

You don't like it? You're a writer -- you don't have to like it -- you just know to know it ...

transitive verb
re- + 3jigger

: alter , rearrange

American Psychological Association (APA):
rejigger. (n.d.). Unabridged (v 1.1).
Chicago Manual Style (CMS):
rejigger. Unabridged (v 1.1). Random House, Inc.
Modern Language Association (MLA):
"rejigger." Unabridged (v 1.1). Random House, Inc. 10 Nov. 2008.

And now you do.

Tsk, tsk. Like trying to educate a brick sometimes.

Bobbe Edmonds said...

>"Tsk, tsk. Like trying to educate a brick sometimes."<

Thus spaketh Zarathustra. Now you know how YOUR teacher must have felt!

To Worg: I don't know where you're located, but as far as Silat-specific...Almost all of them do a high style and a low style. My advice to you is DON'T get wrapped up in terms like "Aliran" or "Ulin", that's how people get tunnel-visioned. Find something you like, and play with it until it breaks. Cimande has great stuff in it...But I can't stand the battering arms against each other stuff, so I exclude that. There are ways of conditioning that don't require you train methods that induce arthritis at age 25.

Kari and Mahdi are both versions of Cimande modified to suit the founder's needs. Mahdi was shorter, and had to jump alot. Kari went FORWARD instead of the typical backwards step.

Rikesan is pretty much Indonesian Jiu Jitsu, with more flow (in my opinion).

You mentioned you like trapping. To me, that is the heart and soul of my personal style, and I have taken great pains (literally) to discover drills and styles that promote this. I would suggest you do the same. You might enjoy Wing Chun, as well as a corto system of Eskrima.

Steve Perry said...

Yeah, I know exactly how my teacher felt -- I'm an autodidact, remember?

Worg said...

I do like a little cadena with my hubud.

I've been thinking of getting into wing chun as well. One of my instructors teaches jun fan and I might be able to get into it from that framework. I had done hubud for a few years when I first crossed hands with a wing chun instructor and even so it felt like putting my arms into a meatgrinder made of table legs.

I think WC is almost certainly "best of breed" when it comes to trapping, but it is slower to learn, I think, than kali trapping and so, since 99% of people out there know nothing of trapping one wonders what the point is.

Except, of course, as an esoteric practice, and for some (me included) esotericism is its own reward. It's kind of frightening, really, that I even know what rikasan is.

Talk about a shibboleth.

Bobbe Edmonds said...

I cannot think of a single time I have, "Talked about a shibboleth".

Nope. Never even came up in conversation once.

Shoggoth, yes.


Addendum: The word verification for this post is "LORDSTFU"

Too good to pass up! I posted it on Thick as Thieves

Steve Perry said...

"... cannot think of a single time I have, "Talked about a shibboleth"."

Yeah, you need to get out more.

I like the word verification, though.

Think somebody is trying to tell you something?