Can Silat be taught as a lifestyle?

Discussion in 'Silat' started by HammockRider, Dec 21, 2011.

  1. HammockRider

    HammockRider Valued Member

    Hello Everyone,

    I know several people who have taken up something like karate to lose weight, improve focus etc. The internet is full of these kinds of stories. As a matter of fact I've heard some inspiring stories of transformation from people practicing all kinds of MA. But I haven't heard much about this in regards to Silat.

    So what do you think? Can you do the same with Silat? Can it be taught as a lifestyle?

    Sorry if I'm asking a question with an obvious answer. I don't know much about Silat it's philiosophy or if it even has an over riding one. I'm just kind of "thinking out loud". Thanks for putting up with me.;)
  2. Ular Sawa

    Ular Sawa Valued Member

    I'm not entirely sure what you mean by lifestyle. That being said, Silat can be practiced for focus, health, self defense, or whatever you want. I absolutely think it can be that sort of practice. Someone, on here I think, once said "you don't choose Silat, Silat chooses you". Keeping in mind that Silat is a very generic term not unlike Karate and that there are many Silat systems.

    I had more in mind but keep getting interrupted here & gotta run. Sorry.
  3. Rebo Paing

    Rebo Paing Pigs and fishes ...

    From a less popular but still traditional (and older) perspective according to Javanese tradition ... your silat is how you live your life. Your silat is the sum total of the way you live body, mind, and soul.
    On top of that you can add some pencak (fighting skills) into the mix.
    Many silat systems offer to supply the whole package ... however, realistically we all develop eventually along a path that is uniquely ours ... even if your fighting style might come from Cimande, Sliwa, Patkwa or a plethora of other 'styles'.
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2011
  4. slipthejab

    slipthejab Hark, a vagrant! Supporter

    any time anyone brings the word lifestyle into a conversation on martial arts I cringe.

    Inevitably... it leads to:

    Does this MA make my butt look big?
    Does this MA match the sofa and the wallpaper?
    Can I download an app for this MA that will run on my iPad?

  5. melbgoju

    melbgoju Valued Member

    If you do shotokan or taekwondo then yes, there are many, many apps (I just got an iPad, and yes, I have been looking for MA apps -I'm a bit sad like that)!
  6. Ular Sawa

    Ular Sawa Valued Member

    Not a least in my case.

  7. Ben Gash CLF

    Ben Gash CLF Valued Member

    LOL, there's actually a really good CLF app.
  8. HammockRider

    HammockRider Valued Member

    That's pretty funny. Personally I'm looking for an MA that will let me accentuate my Eddie bauer/ LL Bean wardrobe. :p I guess what I meant is "Can it be part of a healthy lifestyle?" The reason I ask is that it seems that some MA are more prone toward causing chronic health problems. I'm not talking about garden variety injuries but I've read, maybe in this very forum, about people who've needed hips and knees replaced because they've practiced a certain MA. I should have probably phrased my question something like, " Will practicing silat cause any long term chronic health problems?"

    Although now that I think of it, it probably has more to do with how you train than what you train. Thanks for your time and carry on.
  9. pakarilusi

    pakarilusi Valued Member

    It usually is taught that way here in Malaysia. :hat:

    Whether you want to adopt it as your lifestyle, now that's up to you.
  10. ap Oweyn

    ap Oweyn Ret. Supporter

    I kinda share Slip's concern about the phrase "martial arts lifestyle." It can run the gamut from insisting on wearing a sarong around the house and hanging keris on your living room wall to something much more profound and (to my mind) legitimate.

    I suppose my first question would be "what are you envisioning as 'lifestyle'?" I think silat (or any art) could supply a lifestyle. But, beyond the superficial trappings, it's difficult to answer that without considering what you're trying to achieve.

    When I first started studying eskrima, it felt like a lifestyle (though I don't think I actually described it that way) because I was training in eskrima, but also spending a lot of time at my teachers' house and getting a real sense of the larger culture. It shaped my approach not only to stickfighting, but to relating to different cultures, as well as the usual (albeit difficult to quantify) benefits to self-concept, fitness, etc.

    So, if saturating yourself in another culture that interests you is part of the lifestyle you envision, then sure. Why not? Depending on the teacher. Same for fitness, etc. I think it's more a question of matching up a teacher/club with those specific itches you want scratched.

    I do believe that a martial art, or many other pursuits really, can be a vehicle for self-exploration. I know that's not always a popular stance, and it certainly gets over-romanticized a lot, but I do believe it's possible. Independent of style. I think it mostly comes down how well an individual's training decisions match up with their objectives.

  11. Garuda

    Garuda Valued Member

    Yes and no. It depends on how far you would like to take it.

    Pencak silat has a lot of aspects, it does not only cover fighting. It also covers seni (music, dance like movements and dances), which can be used for special occasions for example weddings. It covers a mental spiritual part. It covers self defense and a philosophy behind it. And next to that it also contains how you interact in a civilised manner with your fellow man (adat). It can be that I missed a few things, but you can see that all the ingredients are there to be a "lifestyle". How far do you like to go?

  12. HammockRider

    HammockRider Valued Member

    Thanks again for you replies.

    I've read the maxim that " Good karate isn't left in the dojo" and was wondering if something like that could also be said of silat. From your responses it seems like it can. I suppose really that any martial art can do you some good outsied the training hall if you work it that way.
  13. TheUnnecessaryEvil

    TheUnnecessaryEvil Banned Banned

    It'd be pretty hard to make a lifestyle out of dipping your hands in boiling oil but you can certainly try LOL.

    In all seriousness, yes, just about anything can be a lifestyle if you want to do it enough.

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