Category Archives: Martial arts

June ’21 Focus, Symbol and Constitutional at Cabal Fang Martial Arts

The martial focus for this month is Sparring, the Symbol is the Candle, and the constitutional is:

2 minutes each of the following:

  • Tire Flips
  • Tire Burpees
  • Tire Lunges
  • Tire V-ups
  • Tire Squats
  • Tire Slams
  • Tire Hops

Video below.

 



TWO MARTIAL ARTS DISTANCE LEARNING PROGRAMS AVAILABLE. 100% free and operated through my non-profit, Cabal Fang is martial arts for personal development, self-defense and fitness. Bobcat Frontier Martial Arts is just $19.99/month and that’s your choice if you’re interested in Frontier Rough ‘n’ Tumble — the fighting arts, survival skills, lifeways and ethos of the colonial and indigenous peoples of North American during the frontier period (1607 – 1912). What are you waiting for — enroll today!

Contrarian: Mettle Maker #263

Earlier this week my wife said I was a contrarian.   

contrarian/ kän·’trer·ē·ən / noun. 1. one who espouses contradicting viewpoints, especially toward the majority 

I decided she was right and that I was okay with that. 

  • Religion is hemorrhaging membership in the U.S. So I headed off to seminary and built a temple in my backyard.
  • Most martial artists are doing either doing MMA, BJJ, Muay Thai, or traditional Eastern martial arts.  I’m practicing Western martial arts — Frontier Rough ‘n’ Tumble and Cabal Fang. 
  • The rest of the world likes e-books and digital music.  I read paper books and listen to CDs.
  • R&B, Hip-Hop, Rap and Pop dominate the music charts.  I prefer Blues, Rock, Metal and Punk.
  • If there’s a topic nobody wants to talk about, I usually bring it up.

The other night I watched a couple of videos about the ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine COVID controversies, and they scared my socks off.  The hydroxychloroquine video — an interview of Dr. Peter McCullough by NYT and Men’s Vogue award winner and best-selling author Peter Leake — had to be put on Vimeo to keep from being banned.  The other one was on the highly respected Dark Horse podcast with Brett Weinstein.  

Why are contrary viewpoints on COVID and other topics being banned on YouTube, Twitter and other platforms?  No tin-foil hats here.  I think it’s about money.  Advertising revenue drives the news and social media, corporations and their lobbyists drive our politicians, and the almighty dollar is in charge.

In 1776 — for the first time in human history! — a citizenry decided to take control of their government from kings, queens, emperors and princes.  Corporations are the kings and emperors of the 21st century.  The next revolution will be against Amazon, Pfizer, Facebook, and Google.  Don’t believe me?  Watch The Social Dilemma.

  • Revolt against your phone.  Put it down and read a book.
  • Resist your web browser.  Try Duck Duck Go.
  • Throw your Amazon boxes into the harbor and try buying local, or getting your books and CDs on Alibris.

Be a contrarian.  Come on in.  The water’s fine.

Contrarian: Mettle Maker #263

  • Warm up before exercise.  To avoid injuries, warm-up thoroughly for at at least 8 minutes before you train. Do 2-3 minutes each of (a) jumping rope or footwork (b) light calisthenics and (c) shadowboxing, forms, light heavy bag work, or 8 minutes of MBF.  
  • wp-1622825317882.jpg

    Wrestling dice ©

    Get out your floor bag or wrestling dummy.  Who trains catch wrestling techniques these days?  You do!  Set your timer for 12 minutes.  Complete as many sets as you can of Bottom Scissors (1 squeeze to failure), Shin Rides (10 each of mixed pop-ups and switches with perfect form from cross-body position), and Front Bridge (5 each mixed pop-ups and clocks from cross-body position). Created using the Wrestling Dice © program.  Get some
  • Run two miles in two parts.  Who breaks up their run into two parts?  A contrarian, that’s who!  Run 1 mile, stop and practice your forms, flow drills, or shadowboxing for 12 minutes, and then run your second mile.  
  • Try this month’s auto tire constitutional.  Who in their right mind uses auto tires for fitness?  A rebel, that’s who!  Complete 2 minutes each of Tire Flips, Tire Burpees, Tire Lunges, Tire V-ups, Tire Squats, Tire Hops, and Tire Slams.  Don’t know the exercises?  Read this.
  • Practice meditation with an unspoken mantra.  Who keeps their mantra to themselves?  A renegade, that’s who!  Before you sit down, select a sacred phrase 10 to 15 words in length.  I prefer “Lord Jesus Christ, son of God, have mercy on me a sinner” or “That which is below is like that which is above.”  Set a timer for 5 or 10 minutes.  Assume posture of choice.  Keep your eyes open.  Do not fidget, wiggle or scratch.  Breathe in as you say the phrase in your head.  Hesitate with lungs full and airways open as you recite the phrase again.  Repeat, reciting the phrase in your head as you breathe out.  Again hesitate with lungs empty and airways open as you recite the phrase in your head.  An unspoken mantra times your breathing to a steady rhythm without having to count, and triggers a positively altered mental state. Get there.  


TWO MARTIAL ARTS DISTANCE LEARNING PROGRAMS AVAILABLE. 100% free and operated through my non-profit, Cabal Fang is martial arts for personal development, self-defense and fitness. Bobcat Frontier Martial Arts is just $19.99/month and that’s your choice if you’re interested in Frontier Rough ‘n’ Tumble — the fighting arts, survival skills, lifeways and ethos of the colonial and indigenous peoples of North American during the frontier period (1607 – 1912). What are you waiting for — enroll today!

Update on Travel and Art: Martial, Musical, and Both Types of Painting

As you guys know, I don’t gather much moss.  This weekend I painted the ceiling of the temple space to look like clouds and trimmed it out with gold molding.

The week prior I went on a little trip, read a few books, learned a new song on the guitar, taught a martial arts seminar, etc. etc.  Video below.

“Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might; for there is no work or thought or knowledge or wisdom in Sheol, to which you are going.” ~Ecclesiastes 9:10



TWO MARTIAL ARTS DISTANCE LEARNING PROGRAMS AVAILABLE. 100% free and operated through my non-profit, Cabal Fang is martial arts for personal development, self-defense and fitness. Bobcat Frontier Martial Arts is just $19.99/month and that’s your choice if you’re interested in Frontier Rough ‘n’ Tumble — the fighting arts, survival skills, lifeways and ethos of the colonial and indigenous peoples of North American during the frontier period (1607 – 1912). What are you waiting for — enroll today!

Ruffle: Mettle Maker #262

¹ruffle \rəf·əl\  vb 1. to roughen or abrade 2. to stand up (as in feathers or a collar) 3. to flip through as in the pages of a book 4. to fold back and forth in accordion fashion

²ruffle \rəf·əl\  n 1. a state or cause of agitation 2. a commotion or brawl 3. a surface disturbance ie. a ripple  4. a strip of fabric pleated on one edge 5. a low vibrating drumbeat

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Bust of Patrick Henry at Scotchtown

Yesterday was Patrick Henry‘s birthday.  I’m a big fan.  I went to visit his house at Scotchtown last year.  Henry was a contrarian and an expert at ruffling feathers.  In honor of Patrick Henry’s birthday yesterday, allow me to ruffle your feathers with some of my favorite contrarian quotes from history and fiction.

  • “The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people, it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government – lest it come to dominate our lives and interests.”  ~Patrick Henry, Patrick Henry, Champion of Liberty
  • “Strong people are harder to kill than weak people, and generally more useful.” ~Mark Rippetoe
  • “When deep space exploration ramps up, it will be the corporations that name everything, the Microsoft Galaxy, the IBM stellar sphere, Planet Starbucks… “ ~Narrator, Fight Club
  • “We’re consumers. We are by-products of a lifestyle obsession. Murder, crime, poverty, these things don’t concern me. What concerns me are celebrity magazines, television with 500 channels, some guy’s name on my underwear. Rogaine, Viagra, Olestra.  Martha Stewart.” ~Narrator, Fight Club
  • “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.”  ~Ralph Waldo Emerson, Self-Reliance
  • “Just because you are a character doesn’t mean that you have character.” ~Winston Wolfe, Pulp Fiction
  • “I saw that the State was half-witted, that it was timid as a lone woman with her silver spoons, and that it did not know its friends from its foes, and I lost all my remaining respect for it, and pitied it.” ~Henry David Thoreau, Civil Disobedience
  • “You don’t win wars with niceness, doctor. You win wars with guts.”  ~Col. Chester Phillips, Captain America: The First Avenger
  • “When you discover you are riding a dead horse, the best strategy is to dismount. But lawyers have other strategies including buying a stronger whip, changing riders, declaring that the horse is better, faster and cheaper dead, and finally, harnessing several dead horses together for increased speed.”  Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson, The Wall Street Journal, 2/18/99

Ruffle: Mettle Maker #262

  • Warm up before you train.  To avoid injuries, warm-up thoroughly for at at least 8 minutes before you train. Do 2-3 minutes each of (a) jumping rope or footwork (b) light calisthenics and (c) shadowboxing, forms, light heavy bag work, or 8 minutes of MBF.  Here’s a fun MBF warm-up: 8 minutes of low-intensity 4-rep sets of HSPU, Shots, Spike Sprawls, and Shoulder Rolls.
  • Don’t “work out.”  Train.  martial grit_1If you don’t have a plan or you’re just doing something to burn calories, you are “working out.”  Stop.  Think about where you want to go and devise a plan to get there.  What are the fundamental movements, fitness requirements, and success indicators in your martial art or sport endeavor?  What are you doing to tailor your training to suit them?  If you’re stuck, start here
  • Read a book.  Research indicates that reading rewires and strengthens the mind, increases empathy, builds vocabulary, fights cognitive decline, reduces stress, aids sleep, alleviates depression, and lengthens lifespan. Read more here.  I read three in the last two weeks — A Pilgrim’s Guide to the Old Catholic Church, Self-Defense for Gentlemen and Ladies, and Relation of Virginia: A Boy’s Memoir of Life with the Powhatans and the Patawomecks If you want to read a book a week, you’re going to have to put down your cell phone, power off your Switch, and close your laptop.  Get there.
  • Go outside in the rain.
    20181119_064100-1.jpg

    A rainy day tire run


    Look, the holes are in bottom of your nose and your skin is uniquely suited prevent absorption of falling water.  I promise that, no matter how stupid you are or how wet you get, you will neither drown nor stay wet forever.  Few things are better for mood and resilience than cultivating the ability take joy in inclement weather.  Get dirty!
  • Practice contemplation — one of the four essential methods of spiritual development. Assume posture of choice and regulate breathing to a slow and steady rhythm. Keep your eyes open.  Do not fidget, wiggle or scratch. Allow your thoughts to dissipate like ripples on a pond and your mind to approach a state of calm and relaxed awareness.  Do not think at all, but especially not in words — do not evaluate, judge, make lists, fixate on emotions, let your mind wander, or any of that.  Just breathe and be.  Start with 5 minutes and work your way up to 20 minutes.  Eventually you should be able to do this for an hour if so desire.


TWO MARTIAL ARTS DISTANCE LEARNING PROGRAMS AVAILABLE. 100% free and operated through my non-profit, Cabal Fang is martial arts for personal development, self-defense and fitness. Bobcat Frontier Martial Arts is just $19.99/month and that’s your choice if you’re interested in Frontier Rough ‘n’ Tumble — the fighting arts, survival skills, lifeways and ethos of the colonial and indigenous peoples of North American during the frontier period (1607 – 1912). What are you waiting for — enroll today!

A Visit to Team Raposa Martial Arts

As my YouTube followers are aware, I recently had a public conversation with Vinny Raposa at Team Raposa Martial Arts in Newark, NJ — see video below.  My wife and I were headed north visit family, so we arranged to stop by Vinny’s place for a visit.  He was kind enough to give us a tour of his huge facility, and to spend a couple of hours training with me.  What a joy it is to share material with someone interested in Western martial arts.  

cina

Vinny’s CINA logo

Vinny and I have a lot in common!  His facility reminds me of Pine Camp where I used to teach in the early 2000s and he too runs a non-profit.  My Cabal Fang project is strictly martial in focus.  But his CINA (Cultural Integration & Arts Association) non-profit incorporates a variety of cultural programs of benefit to the mind, body and spirit of his students, as well as to the benefit of the community.

Much respect for the work Vinny is doing!

 

 

 

 



TWO MARTIAL ARTS DISTANCE LEARNING PROGRAMS AVAILABLE. 100% free and operated through my non-profit, Cabal Fang is martial arts for personal development, self-defense and fitness. Bobcat Frontier Martial Arts is just $19.99/month and that’s your choice if you’re interested in Frontier Rough ‘n’ Tumble — the fighting arts, survival skills, lifeways and ethos of the colonial and indigenous peoples of North American during the frontier period (1607 – 1912). What are you waiting for — enroll today!

Your Alibis: Mettle Maker #261

Not strong in body, mind, or spirit? 

Are you a keyboard warrior, an Apple adventurer, or a Samsung swashbuckler?

Not living out loud? 

Look, this is YOUR LIFE we’re talking about.  This is serious business. 

It’s a CRIME not to be the best you can be! 

So, never mind excuses — what’s your alibi? 

Your Alibis: Mettle Maker #261

  • “What were doing when the accident occurred?”  To avoid injuries, warm-up thoroughly for at at least 8 minutes before you train. Do 2-3 minutes each of (a) jumping rope or footwork (b) light calisthenics and (c) shadowboxing, forms, light heavy bag work, or 8 minutes of MBF.  Here’s a fun MBF warm-up: 8 minutes of as low-intensity 4-rep sets of HSPU, Shots, Spike Sprawls, and Side Deadfalls.
  • “Can you account for the whereabouts of your muscle mass?”   There’s no alibi for not getting stronger.  Pick up heavy objects on a regular basis and you will get stronger.  In 2020 I added 8.3 pounds of muscle — in just 12 months! — using just 3 lifts and 2 carries.  Here are pics of the 75 lb weights I made for farmer walks, to add to my redneck deadlift machine, etc.  Get there. For more tips on getting strong on a budget, buy my book Martial Grit.  Also available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, etc.
  • “Can anyone corroborate the effectiveness of your technique?”  Do I have distance learning programs?  You bet!  But you can only so far.  Sooner or later you need a partner.  If you want a partner but you don’t have one, open up a new tab in your browser and go put a call-out on Facebook or what-have-you, run a Craigslist ad, or whatever, and get there.  What are you waiting for?
  • 20200606_130539.jpg

    Laurel on Cold Mountain

    “When was the last time you had intimate contact with the Earth?”  The evidence is in — contact with the outdoors improves mental and physical health, increases attention span, moderates mood, fights depression, and more.  Does five minutes on lunch break help?  Is it good to park at the back of the lot and increase your walk time from the car into the grocery store?  Yes and yes.  But try getting out there for a few days — with the cell phone off — and you’ll thank me.  Get dirty!

  • “Would you say that you’re on good terms with you-know-who?”  This month’s spiritual symbol is The Staff.  All characters history, myth and fiction who carry a staff — Moses, Aaron, Gandalf, Rafiki, Hermes, and so forth — are intermediaries between the Humanity and the Divine.   Are you carrying the staff?  Are you God’s mouthpiece to the world?  Are you ushering Love, Truth and Justice into the world?  Are you carrying the messages of humanity back to God in prayer?  If not, what are you going to do about it?



TWO MARTIAL ARTS DISTANCE LEARNING PROGRAMS AVAILABLE. 100% free and operated through my non-profit, Cabal Fang is martial arts for personal development, self-defense and fitness. Bobcat Frontier Martial Arts is just $19.99/month and that’s your choice if you’re interested in Frontier Rough ‘n’ Tumble — the fighting arts, survival skills, lifeways and ethos of the colonial and indigenous peoples of North American during the frontier period (1607 – 1912). What are you waiting for — enroll today!

Preaching on Pulp Fiction

Yes, I’m a member of the clergy and yes, my favorite film is Pulp Fiction.  Why?  Well, watch the video and find out.

Last week’s mettle maker was wrapped around the idea of “walking the earth” so if you find my Pulp Fiction video interested you and/or you’re intrigued by the symbolism of “walking the earth” here’s a re-post. 

Walk the Earth: Mettle Maker #260

  • Before you train, warm-up thoroughly for at at least 8 minutes.  Do 2-3 minutes each of (a) jumping rope or footwork (b) light calisthenics and (c) shadowboxing, forms, light heavy bag work, or 8 minutes of MBF.  Here’s a fun MBF warm-up: 8 minutes of as low-intensity 4-rep sets of HSPU, Shots, Spike Sprawls, and Side Deadfalls.
  • Farmer walks to the death.  I had been on a weightlifting plateau for a bit.  But when I took the advice of the legendary Dan John and expanded my heavy carries to include farmer walks (I’ve been doing Bearhug Carry for a couple of years — see below) all my numbers starting going up again.  Plateau broken!  Here’s a good Farmer Walk program:  Train every other day.  Start with a light weight.  Walk off 25 yards, rest 1 minute, walk 25 yards, rest 1 minute and then walk as far as you can (“to the death”).  Next session, add 5 lbs to each side.  When you get to a point where you can’t get 3 x 25 yards, de-load 10% and start the progression again.  Pro tip: Bend your knees when you pick up the weights, as if you’re deadlifting.
  • Circumnavigate your opponent’s jab.  Try this jab counterpunch drill on your heavy bag.  Set timer for rounds of 3:00/1:00 and practice your L. Jab counters — just make sure you really imagine that hand coming at you.  Round 1: Slide inside to avoid opponent’s jab as you fire your own jab back at his nose.  Next iteration, Jab twice.  Next iteration after that, Jab thrice.  Then reset to 1 Jab and continue.  Assuming you’re a righty, you should be circling the bag in a clockwise direction.  Round 2: Slip outside and Jab to “the mark” (solar plexus), and come back with an Right Hook to the body and a Left Hook to the jaw.  Round 3:  Slip outside and Jab to “the mark” (solar plexus), then weave inside and fire a 1-2 to his nose.  If you’re still feeling chipper, switch stance and do all three rounds again with hands reversed.  If none of this makes sense, sounds like you could stand to take one of my classes or sign up for one of my distance learning programs (see below).
  • Go on a wild plant walk.  Why?  So you can impress your friends and wow the ladies with your cool horticultural know-how, of course!  But mainly to build a connection with the world around you, to get out from in front of your laptop screen, and to maybe save yourself in a survival situation.  Get yourself a sturdy blank book (or make one out of paper grocery bags like I did) and start pasting in leaves and adding sketches.  You’ll know hundreds of species before you know it.  Get dirty!
  • Walk the earthThis month’s spiritual symbol is The Staff.  All of the figures from history, myth and fiction who carry a staff — Moses, Aaron from the Bible, Gandalf, Rafiki, Hermes with this caduceus, the Hermit card from your Tarot deck, and so forth — walk the earth with integrity, chastity, poverty and obedience.  Integrity is the condition that manifests when you are unified in your thoughts, desires, actions and beliefs.  Poverty is the state of putting material possessions, money, and worldly things at the bottom of your attention.  Chastity is the healthy ordering of your sexual desires.  Obedience is alignment of one’s entire being with Logos — the Divine Order of the Cosmos — or Christ.  And here’s the incredible thing: if you do those four things, nothing else matters.  Remember in Pulp Fiction when Jules says “I’m going to walk the earth” and Vincent says “you’re going to be a bum”?  Jules has seen and acknowledged a miracle, and he can’t go back.  He has apprehended the ultimate truth, which is simply this.  It doesn’t matter what you do, but rather how you do it.  



TWO MARTIAL ARTS DISTANCE LEARNING PROGRAMS AVAILABLE. 100% free and operated through my non-profit, Cabal Fang is martial arts for personal development, self-defense and fitness. Bobcat Frontier Martial Arts is just $19.99/month and that’s your choice if you’re interested in Frontier Rough ‘n’ Tumble — the fighting arts, survival skills, lifeways and ethos of the colonial and indigenous peoples of North American during the frontier period (1607 – 1912). What are you waiting for — enroll today!

Walk the Earth: Mettle Maker #260

No preamble this week kids, let’s dig in.

Walk the Earth: Mettle Maker #260

  • Before you train, warm-up thoroughly for at at least 8 minutes.  Do 2-3 minutes each of (a) jumping rope or footwork (b) light calisthenics and (c) shadowboxing, forms, light heavy bag work, or 8 minutes of MBF.  Here’s a fun MBF warm-up: 8 minutes of as low-intensity 4-rep sets of HSPU, Shots, Spike Sprawls, and Side Deadfalls.
  • Farmer walks to the death.  I had been on a weightlifting plateau for a bit.  But when I took the advice of the legendary Dan John and expanded my heavy carries to include farmer walks (I’ve been doing Bearhug Carry for a couple of years — see below) all my numbers starting going up again.  Plateau broken!  Here’s a good Farmer Walk program:  Train every other day.  Start with a light weight.  Walk off 25 yards, rest 1 minute, walk 25 yards, rest 1 minute and then walk as far as you can (“to the death”).  Next session, add 5 lbs to each side.  When you get to a point where you can’t get 3 x 25 yards, de-load 10% and start the progression again.  Pro tip: Bend your knees when you pick up the weights, as if you’re deadlifting.
  • Circumnavigate your opponent’s jab.  Try this jab counterpunch drill on your heavy bag.  Set timer for rounds of 3:00/1:00 and practice your L. Jab counters — just make sure you really imagine that hand coming at you.  Round 1: Slide inside to avoid opponent’s jab as you fire your own jab back at his nose.  Next iteration, Jab twice.  Next iteration after that, Jab thrice.  Then reset to 1 Jab and continue.  Assuming you’re a righty, you should be circling the bag in a clockwise direction.  Round 2: Slip outside and Jab to “the mark” (solar plexus), and come back with an Right Hook to the body and a Left Hook to the jaw.  Round 3:  Slip outside and Jab to “the mark” (solar plexus), then weave inside and fire a 1-2 to his nose.  If you’re still feeling chipper, switch stance and do all three rounds again with hands reversed.  If none of this makes sense, sounds like you could stand to take one of my classes or sign up for one of my distance learning programs (see below).
  • Go on a wild plant walk.  Why?  So you can impress your friends and wow the ladies with your cool horticultural know-how, of course!  But mainly to build a connection with the world around you, to get out from in front of your laptop screen, and to maybe save yourself in a survival situation.  Get yourself a sturdy blank book (or make one out of paper grocery bags like I did) and start pasting in leaves and adding sketches.  You’ll know hundreds of species before you know it.  Get dirty!
  • Walk the earthThis month’s spiritual symbol is The Staff.  All of the figures from history, myth and fiction who carry a staff — Moses, Aaron from the Bible, Gandalf, Rafiki, Hermes with this caduceus, the Hermit card from your Tarot deck, and so forth — walk the earth with integrity, chastity, poverty and obedience.  Integrity is the condition that manifests when you are unified in your thoughts, desires, actions and beliefs.  Poverty is the state of putting material possessions, money, and worldly things at the bottom of your attention.  Chastity is the healthy ordering of your sexual desires.  Obedience is alignment of one’s entire being with Logos — the Divine Order of the Cosmos — or Christ.  And here’s the incredible thing: if you do those four things, nothing else matters.  Remember in Pulp Fiction when Jules says “I’m going to walk the earth” and Vincent says “you’re going to be a bum”?  Jules has seen and acknowledged a miracle, and he can’t go back.  He has apprehended the ultimate truth, which is simply this.  It doesn’t matter what you do, but rather how you do it.  



TWO MARTIAL ARTS DISTANCE LEARNING PROGRAMS AVAILABLE. 100% free and operated through my non-profit, Cabal Fang is martial arts for personal development, self-defense and fitness. Bobcat Frontier Martial Arts is just $19.99/month and that’s your choice if you’re interested in Frontier Rough ‘n’ Tumble — the fighting arts, survival skills, lifeways and ethos of the colonial and indigenous peoples of North American during the frontier period (1607 – 1912). What are you waiting for — enroll today!

Bear Creek Lake Adventure May 7-9, 2021


If you liked this post…

There’s a good chance you’d love my e-book The Wildwood Workbook: Nature Appreciation and SurvivalClick here to download it in any format.  35 exercises guaranteed to deepen your relationship with nature and get your heart and mind engaged like never before.  120 pages.

Want to study Frontier Rough ‘n’ Tumble martial arts?  Click here to enroll in the Bobcat Frontier Martial Arts distance learning program for just $19,99/month — all learning materials, testing and certificates included (and a free hat and t-shirt when you sign up too).

Amonsokwat: Mettle Maker #259

bear capture

“Amonsokwat” — A black bear

The other day I posted about learning the extinct Virginia Algonquian language (a.k.a. “Powhatan”).  As part of this project I’m forcing myself to write in my diary using only Powhatan words, which forces me to learn the language.  I’m a lifelong journaler and a big believer in the transformational power of instrospective writing, especially  with the hand — which is why journaling is the the backbone of the Cabal Fang Hermit Path Distance Learning Program and a part of the Bobcat program also.

Here is an inspirational video about writing with the hand.  If you don’t like it I’ll eat my pretty little flowered bonnet.

Anyway, since I’m journaling and thinking in Powhatan, the word that came to mind when putting together this week’s mettle maker was amonsokwat — a bear.  In short bursts, bears are both strong and fast.  And that’s what this week’s mettle maker is all about.

Amonsokwat: Mettle Maker #259

  • Before you train, warm-up thoroughly for at at least 8 minutes.  Do 2-3 minutes each of (a) jumping rope or footwork (b) light calisthenics and (c) shadowboxing, forms, light heavy bag work, or 8 minutes of MBF.
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    This month’s constitutional



    Complete this month’s constitutional.  Burpees (25), Jackknifes (25), Knuckle Push-ups (25), Zombie Squats (50), Neck Crunches (100 – 25 @ F,B,L,R), Bear Walks (100 yards), Bicycles (50).
  • Ruck 2 miles — Ranger time.  Put on a backpack of weight appropriate to your fitness level (I used a #25) and cover 2 miles in 30 minutes or less.  In military cadence that’s 140 ‘beats’ per minute (140 steps of 30″ each per minute).  This is standard marching speed for Army Rangers.  Get there.
  • Counterpunching heavy bag practice.  Set timer for rounds of 3:00/1:00 and practice your L. Jab counters — just make sure you really imagine that hand coming at you.  Round 1: Slide inside to avoid opponent’s jab as you fire your own jab back at his nose.  Next iteration, Jab twice.  Next iteration after that, Jab thrice.  Then reset to 1 Jab and continue.  Assuming you’re a righty, you should be circling the bag in a clockwise direction.  Round 2: Slip outside and Jab to “the mark” (solar plexus), and come back with an Right Hook to the body and a Left Hook to the jaw.  Round 3:  Slip outside and Jab to “the mark” (solar plexus), then weave inside and fire a 1-2 to his nose.  If you’re still feeling chipper, switch stance and do all three rounds again.  If none of this makes sense, sounds like you could stand to take one of my classes or sign up for one of my distance learning programs.
  • Learn to tie a sheet bend.  Very useful for joining two different sizes/qualities of line.  See photo set below.
  • Stand up straight and speak the truth.  This month’s spiritual symbol is The Staff.  Think about all the figures from history, myth and fiction who carry a staff — Moses, Aaron from the Bible, Gandalf, Rafiki, Hermes with this caduceus, the Hermit card from your Tarot deck, and so forth.  The staff is their proof of office.  Symbolically it is a straight line connecting two points — the divine and the material — just like your spine which connects your brain (the ideal intellectual) to your groin (the real-world instinctual).  The wisdom figure is in communication with both worlds.  He or she understands the grand plan, and speaks its truth in a way that is sacred, but also in a way that inspires and directs without being unnecessarily hurtful.  He or she speaks the sacred words, provides direction, and reveals the truth in a way that makes the world better.  For the month of May, pay special attention to embodying that ideal.  Straighten your spine.  Treat the things you say as sacred.  Find a way to speak the truth in a way that inspires.  Be a communicator between the ideal and the mundane.  That is wisdom.    


TWO MARTIAL ARTS DISTANCE LEARNING PROGRAMS AVAILABLE. 100% free and operated through my non-profit, Cabal Fang is martial arts for personal development, self-defense and fitness. Bobcat Frontier Martial Arts is just $19.99/month and that’s your choice if you’re interested in Frontier Rough ‘n’ Tumble — the fighting arts, survival skills, lifeways and ethos of the colonial and indigenous peoples of North American during the frontier period (1607 – 1912). What are you waiting for — enroll today!