Challenge to Silat Community

Discussion in 'Silat' started by Silatyogi, May 3, 2007.

  1. Silatyogi

    Silatyogi Valued Member

    I recieved this from Guru Cliff Stewart today:

    To Paul de Thaours, Bukti Negara Association and all Serak players.

    1) I Challenge you to have fellowship in the art of Serak & all styles of Silat.
    2) I Challenge you to leave the art better than when you entered the art.
    3) I Challenge you evolve the art and improve the art for all practictioners.
    4) I Challenge you to share the art for the better of the community.
    5) I Challenge you to treat all with respect and honour with in the art regardless of organizations & associations or styles.
    6) I Challenge you to train and learn to your best ability.
    7) I Challenge you to control your ego within the arts and outside the arts.
    I Challenge you to not to challenge each other physically within the art.

    A challenge issued by Guru Cliff Stewart May 2, 2007
  2. TalkwithThunder

    TalkwithThunder New Member

    1) I offer fellowship in the art of Bukti Negara and I offer goodwill towards all practioners of silat.
    2) I promise to train hard for my partner so that he can be a better player. I promise to teach to the fullest of my capability when it is my time to do so. I will approach other arts with an open mind, and I will listen to your perspective.
    3) Please reread number two. Evolving is a touchy subject, as over time I have found the stuff I wanted to change I just didn't understand (physical and mental and methodology). I will keep an open mind.
    4)Bukti Negara is open to the community (and I would say much different than what this community has come to believe). Most of you guys haven't experienced it in what 10+ years, if at all.
    5) I will keep my vows to my art and follow adat and hormat.
    6) I do and will. I ask that you remember training isn't just showing up to videotape. I will say that for us training doesn't just mean showing up for seminars, it is having an instructor and working out with them on a regular basis. I'm sure it is the same for many of you.
    7) For years I would say that the Bukti Negara group hasn't said much of anything. We've just sat by quietly while our leaders and people have been badmouthed, not even giving our perspective. The active ones have been training. You are welcome to attend any BN classes and see how humble the people are.
    8) No problem for me. I only fight when attacked or physically threatened. It's pretty much useless just yelling at each other on a forum anyway, I mean how many people have actually shown up to meet the challenge? You are usually talking to somebody who is half a country away, theirs the plane ticket, and the liability. It's all a big pain in the neck.

    A couple notes:
    -I speak for myself not necessarily for my organization or all individuals in it.
    -Many people in my organization are angry, because "stuff" has been said and we have been told by our seniors to say nothing in response or defense.
    -Vows are very important to people in our organization, and we don't like people who have broken them.
    -Many of the people who have "left", been banished, or whatever may be the case refused to train with the group and/or even show up, for years.
    -I realize in any given situation there is my side of the story, your side of the story, and what really happened. I would hope that the silat community can do the same. Unfortunately, if you here something for long enough, truth or not, it becomes "fact" (I realize that this works both ways).
    -BN has been debased as a "watered down" version of Serak. Anyone who has seen and understands both should know differently. Anyone who understands the purpose of BN should know differently. Come check it out for yourself.
    -Training, for us, is defined as physically participating in class with senior and junior students on a regular basis (2-3 times per week).
    -Tell Cliff I hope he can live up to the challenges he has set for others, and that Bart said "Hi".
  3. slipthejab

    slipthejab Hark, a vagrant! Supporter

    lol... that was rather anticlimactic. :p
  4. Pekir

    Pekir Valued Member

    Just an outsiders question, is this a 'family' issue?
  5. Silatyogi

    Silatyogi Valued Member

  6. doc_jude

    doc_jude Banned Banned

    Serak, then... something else?

    Funny, BP has a problem with folks that study Serak for years and then their experience grows into something else and they found another art...

    Meanwhile, Paul deThouars has done Serak for years, and founded Bukti Negara.

    Why in the world don't you have a problem with that!?! Is it that they are not as devoted to Paul as you are? I just don't get it... :rolleyes:
  7. Silatyogi

    Silatyogi Valued Member

    Well it seems to me that Bukti is nothing more than a "Compact" Serak.

    The jurus are Serak motions strung together in different sequences than the actual performace of the individual Serak Jurus.. For example a Bukti Juru may contain elements of various Serak jurus in one bukti juru...

    So my question is? Why all the secrecy why not just study Serak? Cause if you studied Serak you could string any of its root motions together and you would have ...."Bukti Negara"......But its still SERAK....So I don't understand the need for a Sub System unless you where adding new things new insight etc.... But so far in what I have seen from various teachers, videos, hands on experience its more like taking away some of the older principles found in Cimande & Silat Tuo and making it more so that the MASTER has the upper hand until one actually learns the actual ingredients that the master is using and holding back to create his own "Sub System" for the NEWBIES to follow for 10 + years untill they are "WORTHY" to Learn.

    It is like If I play a pentatonic scale on a guitar in a different intervalic secuence's not a new scale.... IT'S STILL A PETATONIC SCALE! If i was to teach the scale to a student I would show him the scale in its ENTIRETY FIRST ( all 5 intervals that make that scale) and then I would show him or her how to string them together to make "Phrases", "Licks", "Music", Etc and they in turn can master the scale and make their OWN MUSIC with it. The problem is if you teach people to be independant you can't be the only MASTER in town. Thank god their are many masters in the music world.

    Could you imagine what music would be like if it followed the attitude sometimes seen in Martial arts community? YUCK...

    What i found EXTREMELY intersting was when Wali Songo Gurus where visiting My Guru's house and sharing Silat with Guru Cliff Stewart, their Cimande Jurus (which are infact authentic from Cimande Village) LOOK very similar to root motions in Serak Juru as was taught to My Guru & Guru Stevan Plinck by PDT. So what does that tell us? It shows that probably most of the motions found in "SERAK" as we know it in the US is infact an off shoot of CIMANDE. And there is probably with out a doubt people still in Indonesia practicing such arts still today.

    Hopefully one day people will be more open to share their findings and research in Silat & Serak. The world is only getting smaller so eventually the Truths will come to light and more and more resources will become available to people to evolve and grow.


    Santiago Dobles
    Last edited: May 3, 2007
  8. doc_jude

    doc_jude Banned Banned

    Did Paul ever study Tjimande? I'm told that Rudy did, along with Tjikalong, Soetji Hati, & Serak.
  9. Silatyogi

    Silatyogi Valued Member

    Probably if not his elders and peers and influences at one point probably did. The resemblance to a lot of the movements to the "Indonesian" art is way too COINCIDENTAL.
  10. TalkwithThunder

    TalkwithThunder New Member

    Much of your assessment of BN being a compact form of Serak is correct. It is shortened and reorganized. PDT will tell you that. I was just having a conversation about this with one of my friends the other day. For our American culture it is just a reorganization of the material and why shouldn't we just do Serak? I often have asked the same question. The roots are in another culture. PDT was not allowed, by his oath, to teach the general public the art of Serak. Sure he taught components of that art in the JKD world (where many people thought they got it). He prayed about it and received an answer which is now BN. The concept that someone could do this is foreign to our culture and seems backward and wrong. What is important to PDT's culture and understanding is keeping your vows and oaths. Vows were broken, the next in line became groomed to be lineage holder. Vows continue to be broken and for years PDT and his associates have said nothing despite all the badmouthing. Is there more to the story than I know, maybe. Are their hurt feelings, I'm sure. It is difficult for even me to understand the Pendekar and I've been around for 15 years. At about 9 years into my training, I asked Pendekar what I needed to do to get more information, I believed (and was taught growing up) that if you worked hard and proved yourself you would be given information. Pendekar answered, "Bart, you never asked."
  11. Silatyogi

    Silatyogi Valued Member

    You can not crucify people whose path lead them to people who are now considered "Out" by the PDT asssoc. My Karma lead me to my teachers and to my current Guru.

    My teacher started me off with Serak & Bukti at the same time so I would see the common threads and understanding more clearly. I had to start again from scratch from what I learned from Inosanto, Cass (Buka Jalan).

    Maybe PDT had an oath with his elders I do not negate that possibility nor disrespect it . Being a practicing Buddhist I can understand the meaning of vows oaths and Karmas.

    However......If the public was not to learn Serak...then why was it taught to his students? why not just teach them Bukti Negara?

    Why did he spend the time teaching people like Guru Cliff Serak? Or Guru Stevan Plinck Serak? All the others at the PDT academy that where allowed to study Serak? Are they not all americans? wouldn't that be breaking the path or vow or oath?

    Why are there so many "Strands" of Serak? Seems like the Dutch still teach it in Holland. Seems like In Indonesia there are real "SERA" players, Seems like Guru Rudy Terlinden also taught and trained a strand of it.

    I know Bukti is a compact form of SERAK. You can see components of the 18 jurus within Bukti Negara jurus. Once I saw that I stopped training Bukti negara.

    I also know that Serak has many components which do infact come from a much older history and much older Art. You can see a lot of CIMANDE, Silat Tuo, Sarbandar, Garuda, Macan, Monyet, Ular Sawa, Cikalong and other forms of silat and essences of silat, You can even see a lot of principles found in many of the Internal Fighting styles (Kuntau, Tai Chi, Bagua, Xing Yi) and principles found in VEDIC martial arts. So whoever the Elders and the creators of the actual art are it is in fact truly Genius.


    Santiago Dobles
  12. tellner

    tellner Valued Member

    There's a lot of Serak that looks very much like parts of Cimande. That's only natural. Cimande is one of the oldest and most influential systems in the area. If the founders of Serak (a whole other can of worms) didn't learn it they were certainly familiar with it and probably had a dust-up or two with someone who was familiar with it.

    Bobbe, a sometime-poster here, has given up martial arts forums for Lent. I understand why, but it's still a pity. He's spent an awful lot of time on Java, especially in the Bandung region and has studied Cimande (in the Cimande villages), Serak with the de Thouars family, Serak on Java, and a number of related styles. We've talked about it, and when he's shown stuff personally or played videos of his teachers over there it's even more pronounced.

    Now, as for the badmouthing, vows broken and so on, well...

    I've seen an awful lot of really nasty stuff said by people from the PDT Academy about an awful lot of people, mostly the usual meshigas.

    I haven't seen Cliff's people talk trash about Paul. Steve wouldn't stand for it from his students. Guro Inosanto requires no defense whatsoever under any circumstances; you'd have to travel a long way to find a more humble and kind human being, and I don't think he could say "****" if he had a mouthful of it.

    Steve never took any vow not to show Serak. Neither did Cliff. Neither did a number of other people who have been cast into Outer Darkness. And it's not like Silat is still hard to find the way it was in America in the 50s and 60s. It's one long plane trip to Indonesia from here. There's Serak there. It's not a mystical holy thing. It's just another Silat.

    My experience mirror's Silatyogi's. For the first what, for or five years we did straight PSBN. Out of respect for his teacher's wishes Steve didn't teach Serak. When he and Paul parted ways he stopped teaching Bukti Negara and went back to what his first love, Sera. That's the day I stopped practicing Bukti. Frankly, I prefer Sera and see no need to go back to the carrier system.
  13. TalkwithThunder

    TalkwithThunder New Member

    The vow wasn't to not teach Americans. The vow was to not teach the general public. It wasn't to be commercialized like we see it now. There are reasons for that beyond our American way of thinking, and outside of our cultural understanding. I have seen the Pendekar subtly ask people to do things for years and they ignore him and they ignore him and then they suddenly get a letter that says change or they are out. You don't hear that side of the story because it is rationalized away and "our camp" hasn't spoke of it. Then "your camp" or whoevers camp speaks of how they have been mistreated. PDT's ways are foreign to a lot of us, including myself.. it can be frustrating to say the least. It is frustrating for PDT because he has given a gift to the general public in BN and it has been, for the most part, rejected. As lineage holder he has been given responsibility for keeping a body of knowledge intact. That is difficult in the American culture, because we want it now, we want to take it before we have enough understanding of it, repackage it, and sell it or pass it on to our friends.
    I do not begrudge you finding your teacher. I do not begrudge any of the people finding their teachers. We are where we are. I believe many of your teachers are skilled, I think some are not. Plinck was top dog (under PDT) in his day. I worked with him, he was and I presume still is good. He was being groomed as lineage holder, PDT prepared for the inevitibility of his own death and from what I heard, named Plinck next in line. It protected the art to the best of PDT's ability, in my eyes. Plinck fell out of line, decided to hop off the bus (he had other options), and was replaced. People don't seem to understand (I presume because of the pill mentality) that the bus moves on. What we are dealing with is material with great depth. If you hop off a vehicle travelling across the US in OH you miss a lot of terrain, if you hop off in Arizona you miss a lot of terrain, if you fall asleep in the back of the bus (don't train) you miss a lot of terrain, if you sit in the back of the bus and tell people in the back what is happening ("this is the grand canyon, I heard about it once") that person is distracting the people from listening to the tour guide (and usually when they hop they take people with them because they can speak eloquently; our tour guide can be hard to understand, verbally and culturally). "Our camp" hasn't differentiated which ones were which, who was who. The bus moves on. We are angry at a lot of people, we think many of them are deceiving the general public about their true understanding (or letting their students do it.) We do not think we hold all the answers, our teacher has not taught us that way. We have sat and watched "instructional" tapes from people, ate popcorn, conceded good points, and, also, laughed at the blatant misunderstanding or lack of understanding in the foundation of our art. Life goes on. We have been angry. We are trying to not be angry. The doors to Bukti Negara are opening again, with a higher skill level, and instructor's with a greater understanding. Please come in and experience what we have to offer and see what we are about. Experience who we are and what we are capable of and then make your judgement.
  14. TalkwithThunder

    TalkwithThunder New Member

    What is a carrier system?
  15. tellner

    tellner Valued Member

    It's a term that got invented somewhere inside the de Thoaurs family years back. It referred to Bukti Negara, Tongkat and one of Willem's systems. They were designed to be derived from Serak, at least Paul and Victor's versions, and carry the dedicated student on to Sera later if the teacher deemed him worthy. The names, "Witness to..." and "Carrying Pole", make the nature clear.

    Like many ideas this evolved over the years into what we have today.
  16. TalkwithThunder

    TalkwithThunder New Member

    I have never seen anything other than on here, from "other camps", that said BN was a stepping stone to Serak. In fact, I've always been told quite the opposite. Are you sure that wasn't someone elses idea? If you are talking about the same "Witness to..." that I am thinking of it only gives credit to Serak as the foundation of BN. I don't know where "Carrying Pole" comes from.
  17. Silatyogi

    Silatyogi Valued Member

    Sometimes you have to see it from a different angle.

    I may not have 20 years in SERAK but I do have over 20 years in music.

    I look at it this way....At one time you had in Miles Davis's camp some of the best guitarists ever: Jon Mclaughlin, Mike Stern, Robben Ford.

    All of which in their own right can play their instruments to a high caliber and can improvise over an change thrown at them with much ease and fluidity. Some are more into percision, articulation and Virtousity and hitting multiple notes over a change (Mclaughlin), Some are capable of just hitting the right note at the right time with a less is more attitude and are able to express with a lot feeling and "Blues" (Robben Ford). Others have a chaotic abilty to play random things at the right time not fast not slow but IN THE POCKET with the right FUNK and sometimes even drunk or high off their ass(Mike Stern).

    Is one better than the other? They all can Improvise INCREDIBLY under pressure. The all came from the same school of Jazz ...MILES DAVIS.

    I prefer over all Jon's Style of guitar playing but that doesn't make Robben or Mike any less of players infact if you ask Jon he would tell you he is in AWE of them. Infact in their own right they are all innovators. They all I am sure use a lot of what they learned from Miles...but they are now truly miles ahead of where they started after years of being on the Road, jamming, improvising, in and out of studios etc.


    Santiago Dobles
  18. Tuankaki

    Tuankaki Valued Member

    Robben's better. So is Barry Finnerty. You are wrong for liking John. :D
  19. Silatyogi

    Silatyogi Valued Member

    Allan Holdsworth kicks everyones ass! But he is from the Tony Williams school...
  20. Tuankaki

    Tuankaki Valued Member

    Holdsworth is from Planet Holdsworth, and Tony is from... well... Miles. There's no getting out from under Miles' shadow.

    Now I'm sure everyone else is lost on this metaphor. I had to chime in because I've been fortunate to hang with Robben, Barry, Garth Webber, and Dave Creamer, all of whom played with Miles for a time.

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