First Kembangan Practise in Camden

Discussion in 'Silat' started by Kiai Carita, Jul 10, 2005.

  1. Ular Sawa

    Ular Sawa Valued Member

    Dear Kiai Carita,

    I will say first off I do enjoy reading many of your posts and find them quite informative. My sincerest thanks for your insight. However, we train to know how to use a kris, you don't. It's really fine with me that you don't and even think we shouldn't. That's where it ends. Let it go Mate. You're not going to change anyone's mind here.

    Better to use your time and talents on another Silat related topic that will promote unity among the Silat practitioners rather than divisiveness. There is too much divisiveness in the Silat community anyway, more so than even the Ninjitsu guys. Keep in mind we are all working to promote an Indonesian cultural art. We may not do it perfectly all the time but our hearts are in the right place.

  2. Sgt_Major

    Sgt_Major Ex Global Mod Supporter

    There isnt much more I have to add to this discussion. Kiai, as SilatLiam as already said, my teachers are real people who I can get in my car and be with in 20mins, or the furthest on this island is no more than 2hrs away. As has also been said, I have no idea who you are, or what you basis/background/ideals etc are. Your influence seems Islamic, which as I am not interested in any form of Religion does not concern me. Nor does talk of God, Allah, Christ, or any other name for a deity, on the other side of the same coin there is no interest in me for the devil, belzabub, or any other name for the anti-deity.

    I AM saying now, that I will take no more tolerance to sniping, jostling, or any other hidden attempts at attacking people. If anyone has something to say, it best be said with dignity, respect, and above all, it had best be within the Terms of Service detailed by the owners of this site.
  3. Kiai Carita

    Kiai Carita Banned Banned

    Sunday's Kembangan & Monday's Networking

    Peace to all dear Pendekars,

    One function of kembangan is to unite pesilats. Sunday's happenning at the Stables Market in Camden was a small illustration of the point. At around 5 in the afternoon a man walked straight up to me while I was standing in the shop and asked 'What's the name of this shop?' and I said 'This is Kalimantan Creations, Sir, also known as 'the best shop in London''..."Who is doing kembangan?" ...immediately I knew who I was talking to:"Bang Ariffin?" and we embraced eachother and started to get on. Later in the evening Abdullah1881 arrived with friends. And more friends. We had too much to talk about really and did kembangan in stops and starts and lots of hahahaha...very spiritual.

    Basically I pitched the idea of doing this kembangan for a 'Malam Prihatin' -malam: night, prih:the kind of pain when a cut gets acid on it, and batin: you all know what this means. This 'Night Of Sorrow' will consist of an all night kembangan do with Sekar Gedhogan Community Gamelan Orchestra and London pesilat, to be held on Saturday, September 10 2005, from 8PM till the end, as a prayer of sorrow and statement of rejection to the use of violence in solving humanity's problems. Everyone was supportive to the idea and agreed to come.

    Monday morning I picked up my son and we went to see Steve Benitez who had just come back from a silat village called Mahmud in South Bandung. My son recognised all the film-stars in posters around the lobby of his silat studio. Steve had lost weight and looked even more like 'the new Bruce Lee' he is said to be. He proudly showed me his newest certificate from Aki (Grandpa) Jumhi in the Mahmud Village, that had been stamped by IPSI. Alhamdulillah Steve it is a relief that you are recognised by IPSI now I said. We went across the road to have a coffee.

    Steve told me about the film he is working on with an Indonesian company with lots of 'real silat' in it... I told him about the kembangan do and he said he is 99% sure that he can come with some interested students, and 100% sure that he will support it and incourage some of his students to come. I stressed that this is an informal do and we shall respect informalities, and all pesilats are expected to come as individuals. So there is no IPSI or non IPSI, good or bad, right or wrong, dressed in baju silat or drag, crazy or whatever: All we have is an area under the sky which we make a sacred gelanggang which I will sweep clean(ish) so please take your shoes off when you enter and although informal observe the presence of the Great Spirit, please.

    I also told Steve about how I had rubbed some people the wrong way on this forum and he said he would sincerely pray for us. I will pray too. I never intended my words to hurt and I apologise if they did. I do have an agenda to let knowledge that has been given to me, flow back to it's source through cultural ways, like this forum, like this kembangan do. Steve said he fully supports me and hopes that all pesilats can come in friendship and support the promotion of ethics of non-violence and really impressed my son. Now I have to go and write an email to Bang Aidinal from the UK federation and try to get to see him this Saturday at the Malay Festival.

    Dear Mr President, we would like you to come to the parking space near the toilets in the Stables Market...heheheh :D Just joking...

    Warm salaams to all,
    Kiai Carita.
  4. SilatSeeker

    SilatSeeker Valued Member

    "rejection to the use of violence in solving humanity's problems"

    Seemed pretty effective in putting a stop to Hitler.

    If you saw a women being raped would you not use violence if neccessary to stop it?

    Heaven forbid your child or wife were in mortal danger - would you not resort to violent measures if necessary?

    Or by "rejecting violence" do you mean putting an end to wars that you personally disagree with?

    I know that it's gone terribly wrong in the UK recently, but would you seriously consider stripping the police forces of the world the right to use deadly force when necessary?

    It seems that the Prophet Muhammad didn't have a problem with violence when it came to self defense and perhaps a bit of conquest...

    So... I can only assume that your "rejecting of violence as a means to solving humanities problems" is a rejection only of those wars you personally believe are invalid.
  5. Kiai Carita

    Kiai Carita Banned Banned

    Peace and Salaams to all,

    The rejection of violence in solving humanities problems in my mind would, like the Prophet Muhammad s.a.w, put diplomacy before violence. I am aware that there is a difference between the impact of the violence of the sword and of modern warfare.

    Problems in the (modern) world are mostly political, social, environmental, cultural, economic, and religious. The do not require a culture of violence. Silat should stop a rape or a robbery with force but still would not stop the roots of the crime. The roots of the crime are not to be solved with violence.


    Kiai Carita.
  6. SilatSeeker

    SilatSeeker Valued Member

    How would you have stopped Hitler?

    You are right - the root - evil, exist in the human soul. As the Marines Warfighting manual states - the real enemy is a hostile inteligence. That's the center of gravity - the Will of the enemy.

    While having all the evil hearts become pure is a lofty goal - I've got a hunch that as long as there are humans, there will be evil, and sadly, that evil often needs to be stopped with violence.

    Why reject the very tool that brings protection, safety and peace to the innocent? It would be more accurate to say you "Reject Evil".
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2005
  7. Silk Road

    Silk Road New Member

    Very well put, Kyai Carita. As all "enlightened" pesilat will attest, by the time you have to use force to resolve a problem, you have already failed in the higher sense.

    Kyai, since you are the authority on Kejawen here, what suggestions do you have for the socially conscious pesilat to fulfil the mandate of mamayu huyuning bawono (sp?) I'm glad that you are meeting with support from other groups out there!
  8. SilatSeeker

    SilatSeeker Valued Member

    "As all "enlightened" pesilat will attest, by the time you have to use force to resolve a problem, you have already failed in the higher sense."

    Uuuuummmm... So why study silat? By definition the only time you need it is when you "fail" by other means? So, Silat is for failures.
  9. Kiai Carita

    Kiai Carita Banned Banned

    Evil is...

    Assalaamu'alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh,

    How to stop Hitler would be basically the same way with stopping Truman drop the bomb and Stalin posturing for the Cold War... which would be to encourage and create the condition where people become mature individuals and not sheep. All these modern wars were and are fought by the brainwashed for the interests of a few families in this world, are they not?

    As for my ideas on Evil I would say that the thoughts put down by Sulaiman and Abdullah1881 in the Spiritual Silat thread are mine as well. I do not believe that you or I or Bin Laden or Bush or Blair have the authority to judge one-another in terms of Evil even when we pose as the authority of the pulpit. As I can only see my own heart I can only know when I am Evil, really. I know when I am Evil and I learn to not be by controling and communicating with my 4 nafs or spiritual siblings.

    Silkroad, Memayu Hayuning Bawana is a Jawa kebatinan saying meaning To Make More Beautiful The Beauty of the Universe... This is probably a text that is related to the Islamic idea of Muslims being required to be 'Rahmatan lil Alaamin' or 'A Blessing to the Universe' .... So for the first a blessing should not be in the form of Violence.

    We live in space and time and within space and time we create our mark in life. We either do positive and make things better or do negative and make things worse or don't do anything and make things worse as well. As a pesilat we must first work on the closest thing, our own body, mind and spirit and expand from there. In the physical world we should make our immediate and bigger environment better by us living in it, and also in the spiritual world.

    So we should bathe and wear clean clothes, keep our living space tidy and clean, and generally observe the sanctity of this Earth. Spiritually we should put our faith in God and ask God to be led by His Light, and seek God with longing in our hearts. Smile more and practise silat and insya'allah you will never have to use it.

    Wa'alaikumsalaam Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh,

    Kiai Carita.
  10. Sgt_Major

    Sgt_Major Ex Global Mod Supporter

    And if you dont believe in a God? Does it make you any lesser a person? Or any lesser a pesilat?

    Do we also have to walk, and not drive a car as it damages the Earth? And must we recycle all that can be, or are we then becoming a lesser person/pesilat??
  11. SilatSeeker

    SilatSeeker Valued Member

    "All these modern wars were and are fought by the brainwashed for the interests of a few families in this world, are they not?"


    (please enlighten though on which families these wars were fought for - )

    And you are completely dodging the questions of "rejecting violence" yet studying how to deliver it it very well in the proper circumstances. Nice rhetoric though.
  12. Kiai Carita

    Kiai Carita Banned Banned

    kembangan = non-violence

    Assalaamu'alaikum Pendekars,

    Thank you for giving 'sambut' to my 'buka silat lidah'.

    Modern wars are fought for the expansion of capital which is concentrated in the hands of the few on the top of the pyramid which is the structure of present day society, globally and locally. To expand on that take a course in politics or read Noam Chomsky and his teachers. I will expand on the silat not on who owns this world.

    As pesilat we study how to avoid getting hurt by violence and to deliver violence in an effective and fatal way and thus the possesion of this knowledge requiers an ethic of non-violence and compassion. We can afford to be non-violent in violent situations because we have learned to control ourselves and the environment within our reach and we are the lovers of space and time. For a more detailed and intellectual discussion I can refer you to or if that doesn't work search the web for the thesis of Jaida Kim Samudra, or please come to the 'Malam Prihatin' kembangan do and see Steve Benitez 'the new Bruce Lee'. and we can talk, exchange mobile numbers, send sms and meet up again and talk far and wide and deep and be friends.

    I will go back on track and discuss the 'rejection of violence as the way to solve humanity's problems' ... not 'the rejection of violence period'. I accept that violence occurs and it occurs in many measures. In nature tsunamis happen, volcanoes errupt, the lion eats the zebra and both get shot by the trophy hunter. September 11 happened and it was wrong and all the formal reactions to date have been more bang-bang-shoot-shoot and this is expensive and not very clever unless you sell those fireworks. The difference between the Aceh Tsunami and the Twin Towers is that the second is man made and what man makes man can change.

    Watch TV beyond the sexy camera angles and the detached three second attention-span reporting and empathize and feel the pain in your heart. Clear your head with hunger and thirst and prayer and pray for patience in your thoughts and you will understand how stupid this all is. My prayer is that I be given the clarity to see and if needed, the strength and the beauty to show others the stupidity of the viloence that is being bred by everyone including myself. I want to move, search and to find out and demonstrate that violence is not the only way. I believe and want to prove that there are other ways for in silat there is the kembangan way.

    The situation that is now pregnant with the social sculpture of a kembangan and gamelan hapenning which is going to be in the Stables Market can be seen as a small world. From the beginning when I started to roll the idea around I came across complicated 'political' problems. Bang Aidinal, Steve Benitez, Haji Mangipin, Bang Ariffin, Cimandesilat, Sabrsilat, Abdullah1881 and friends, are all dedicated pesilat with their hearts in the right place in their chests. I feel brotherhood with all of these pesilat I have met in person and trusting the alchemy of silat I believe that all the pesilat that have / will cross wires with me on this forum will find that we are brothers as soon as we meet informally in person. However the reality is that all are strong and passionate personalities and between some there has been a history of friendship and distrust. Most people have said they will suport the hapenning and some have been supicious of my motives which I hope are obvious.

    When insya'allah these people and their friends come and do kembangan and sit on the mats on the floor and exchange the normalities of informal talk insya'allah they will naturally harmonise like the gamelan or begin to roll towards that way. Hopefully these people will bring some simple refreshments to share on the mats and remember that we can't use table manners on the floor for I can only give them a beggar's welcome. We will have all types of believers and non believers so feel welcome to bring wine and pork-cracklings if you wish. Today Allah sent a beautiful handwoven sajadah to the shop for anyone who wants to sholat during the hapenning but if you would like to jama'ah it would have to be on simple reed mats or newspaper somewhere near our gelanggang unless you bring your own holy-surface.

    Looking at the website of Silatliam's upcoming seminar in London which is on September 11 I would like to invite you too cousin (I will tell you how I am cousin and even prove to you if you want) and Cimandesilat, Silatpupil, Pendekar Sanders ...please come. If you feel I have hurt you seven times please slap me, hit me, kill me seven times seven times and insya'allah you will know that I love you and my posts were posts of love and concern, but you must come to the Stables Market and meet this Indonesian coolie to do that for although I would love to see your silat, I cannot financially afford to leave my market post.

    To all your students and to everyone everywhere I can bear witness that your silat is good. That is why I believe you can take a little debate on the cultural aspects for you are Pendekars who know how hit and avoid being hit. You know how to fall and how to throw. You study how to lock and how to open. You are the masters of circumstance. Pendekars, your silat is good but it is not the best neither is it the most devastating because it is an impossible point to prove.

    Di dalam ilmu silat tak ada juara kedua.
    In the knowledge of silat there is no second best.

    Proving the best in the silat world would kill silat for only one can be the best and everyone else must be dead. This must never happen. That is why we learn from the rice plant and listen to the wind and believe in God and go beyond the wonders of 'internal energy' to the miracles of alchemy for we do what Soren Kiekegaard did, we leap (in to faith). Silatpupil if you don't yet believe in God drill your silat moves more and insya'allah you will believe for even if your cognition does not yet believe your cells believe and your DNA believes and God believes in you.

    Pendekars are experienced in the hard way of making mistakes. That knowledge gave me the courage to stand up and debate you on the points of culture and history and anthropology. If I am wrong you will enlighten me if you are wrong I will enlighten you if we both are wrong we can be allies in the search of the truth.

    For a more thorough discussion on how kembangan is a way of solving potentially violent situations in a non violent, powerful and beautifull way please read the thread on kembangan in this forum.

    Di dalam ilmu surat tak ada juara satu
    In the knowledge of letters there is no number one.

    All poets make mistakes through their pen but still the pen is the instrument through which God teaches. Beware of the poets! Don't you see they wander in dark valleys? Except those who hold Faith and practise good amaal!

    I hope you enjoyed the rhetoric and please excuse the spelling mistakes as I went barefoot to primary school and have no formal education save a highschool certificate long folded up in the pockets of my red jeans.

    Wal billahi taufiq wal hidayah
    Wa'alaikum salaam Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh.

    Shanti. Shanti. Shanti.

    Kiai Carita.
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2005
  13. Ular Sawa

    Ular Sawa Valued Member

    Very nice post Kiai. I wish I could come to this gathering to see the other pesilat and share in the experience. Have you thought of posting pictures or even better yet, video?
  14. Kiai Carita

    Kiai Carita Banned Banned

    Kiai Carita has no camera but hopes those who do have cameras will bring them. Kiai Carita can only offer his heart and his head, his hands and his feet, his room and his time. Even the space on the coblestones or up near the toilets are beggar's space Ular Sawa. Thank you for the praise it makes me happy.

    Warm salaams to all,
  15. SilatSeeker

    SilatSeeker Valued Member

    Yes, it would be nice to hang in a coffee shop having a spirited debate. Unfortunately I'm on the wrong side of the pond - so we have to settle for an imperfect forum in which misunderstandings abound. So, given those limitations... we forge on...

    I have to reject your thesis that WW2 was fought to benefit a few capatalist families - and world leaders were their puppets. Instead of backing up your thesis - you site a leftist (one I happen to diagree with) and brush it aside saying it is up to others to research and educate themselves. This is a nice high school debating tactic.. and a dodge. I could just as easily say it is you that needs to re-examine his politics. But neither response is answering the underlying thesis - it's a nice subtle way to call each other stupid.

    You want to reject violence - but say ultimately it's root is in the human heart - but that we can't judge anything going on in someone elses heart as evil - so we are left with calling their actions "violence" and rejecting it (but not all the time because there are times when it is the only course for survival)...

    Now, of course, the more strength and knowledge one has, the more options they have of dealing with a violent situation - (it is only the strong man that can be truly meek) but at the end of the day, you and I would both use violence to end a threat to an innocents life once all options were used up. So, I don't reject violence - I reject evil in the human heart. Both evil and the good are capable of violence.

    "As pesilat we study how to avoid getting hurt by violence and to deliver violence in an effective and fatal way and thus the possesion of this knowledge requiers an ethic of non-violence and compassion. We can afford to be non-violent in violent situations because we have learned to control ourselves and the environment within our reach and we are the lovers of space and time."

    But... we can't afford to be non-violent in all situations.

    My goal here is clarity. And a gathering with the purpose of rejecting violence by people who are studying to be very good at delivering it when all other options have been used up is rather, well... ?

    More accurate would be a gathering to reject X, Y and Z specific instances of violence. Like what's going on in the Sudan right now. Or Hamas convincing teenage boys to walk into pizza parlors as human bombs and sending nails tearing through the flesh of babies.

    Now that my friend, I could be part of. I would even take the Presidents parking spot you are holding open next to the latrines...
  16. Kiai Carita

    Kiai Carita Banned Banned

    SilatSeeker Vs Noam Chomsky ?

    Assalamu'alaikum, Pendekars,

    SilatSeeker please read my words...reject violence as the way of solving humanity's problems...that is a whole concept do not cut it in the middle of the sentence and say I want to reject violence, why, at age 11 I went and got the foreskin of my phalus chopped off and to this day I am happy for doing it! I do not reject violence. In silat ethics of non violence there are the instances when violence is not only permited but also required! Read properly you son of comfort SilatSeeker and don't be lazy and cut your attention before you grasp the whole concept I 'buka'-ed to you!

    This is silat in Indonesia my friend and I had it easy compared to my friends many who have left this world in a violent way: At age 12 I was in Jakarta and went to school carrying a knife and my friends had poisened knives we had school wars and terminal thugs and I saw people being stabbed the blood spreads on the white school uniform but it is normal, daily life, not a war zone, just Blok M 1977 a financial centre of Jakarta.

    Age 15 several gangs wanted to kill me and I went to the bottle for courage and left Jakarta for Yogyakarta. Age 16 I was safe in the hands of Jesuit priests who preached the paedagogy of the oppressed but my city was terrorized by 'mysterious killings' - every morning there were bodies of young men with holes in their heads in public places. Silat helped me survive through a life in which I began smoking at age 5 and the streets of Jawa in my teens and early 20's and I understand that silat is about non violence, about bringing too life not about killing! Have you ever heard the sound of thousands of motorbikes without mufflers? Can you see them? Hear them calling God for political reasons? Look: many of them 'political party pesilat' are menacingly bearing swords and empowered belts.

    Again, PM me for an email address and tell me your argument against Noam Chomsky. This Forum is for silat is it not? Not for politics. So my dear chappy, learn proper rethoric and tell what your non-left argument is that is better than Noam Chomsky. The world has a right to know it, as it must be very good to be better than Noam Chomsky but I suspect you are only posing. As for me I am here to write about silat and Indonesian culture.

    Wa'alaikum salaam,

    Kiai Carita.
  17. britsilatinmt

    britsilatinmt New Member

    haha, i actually quite like Noam chomsky, he's an exceptional man,
    however, he has presented factual information ,
    but also presents theories relating to situations, whether you accept his interpretations are more a matter of belief in many cases, and if silatseeker
    doesnt buy some of his ideas he/she doesnt really have to present an alternative theory :cool:

    Glad you saw Steve, and im glad the kembangan seems to be coming together in Camden.. Did you meet Johnny as well?

    best wishes
  18. SilatSeeker

    SilatSeeker Valued Member

    First, I didn't bring up the politics - you did. I didn't bring up saving the President a parking spot next to the latrines, I didn't bring up that WW2 was fought by men that were political puppets of several wealthy families and I sure didn't bring up Chomsky... I did ask you to back up your talk with specifics after you did. Like mentioning the specific wealthy famlies that are the puppet masters. You chose not to.

    I'm not going to take this private because you brought it up in public. I am going to let it go because it's all tangential to my main question...

    My simple query was simply clarification of what you meant by "rejecting violence as a way to solve humanities problems". Obviously the Prophet himself found it necessary to use violence. I suggested that violence was necessary to stop Hitler - especially since appeasement wasn't the answer. (though you disagree with this specific example - though you provided several of your own of where violence was an acceptable solution to humanities problems).

    So, I'm seeking clarity about when it is right/okay to use violence to solve humanities problems and when is it not? When do you reject it as a solution and when is it acceptable? And if it is ever acceptable - then why are we gathering to reject violence as one of the last-resort means available to solve humanities problems? (Since it's necessary and in some cases immoral not to exercise it's use)

    (Son of comfort, lazy, Chappy, Posing - all examples of name calling and ad hominem arguments. While fun, not great examples of higher reasoning.)
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2005
  19. Sekaralas

    Sekaralas New Member

    I've moved my response to a new thread .. proposing a discussion on what is meant by the creed of 'non-violence', and what is meant by 'rejecting violence to solve humanities problems'.

    Last edited: Aug 24, 2005
  20. Kiai Carita

    Kiai Carita Banned Banned

    Sorry SilatSeeker

    Assalaamu'alaikum Pendekars,

    Oooops, true. Thank you for pointing out that I was getting carried away by my nafs, SilatSeeker. Appologies for that. Very bad adab of me, I am sorry. But Sekaralas has got the thread back on the track of silat and violence or non-violence which is what we should discuss instead of Noam Chomsky or Mikey Mouse. A great post Mas Sekaralas I really enjoyed the post.

    Got to go now so warm salaams to all,


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