The meaning of kali

Discussion in 'Filipino Martial Arts' started by buddafinger, Oct 22, 2006.

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  1. kalislash

    kalislash Valued Member

    Kapangpangan also forgot to the letter h like hangin they say it angin ,it is just understood that kali as kalis or arnes as arnis .
  2. Gajah Silat

    Gajah Silat Ayo berantam!

    Sorry I haven't digested the whole thread but in Indonesian Kali denotes the symbol of a cross, as in the symbol of multiplication in maths! This also applies to two sticks, or in fact anything crossed in a diagonal manner.

    In Javanese, Kali can also mean river.
  3. Limbas

    Limbas Valued Member

    Anything that links to the martial art called kali.. beyond yambao... anyone?
  4. BGile

    BGile Banned Banned

    Remy Presas, mentions in the history part of "Modern Arnis" it is "unlike Kali" for it does have kick's and takedowns. When mentioning Kali he is talking about the weaving pattern of the sticks, (sinawali) and the solo pattern of the baston.

    He decided to take the art of hitting the hand with the stick out and only hit the stick. (rattan is sacred in the art of Kali I guess and it was ok to hit the hand).

    A side note: Hanshi Bruce Juchnik introduced Roland Roemer Jr. to Remy.
    The Picture on the front of the book "Modern Arnis" the two people are Remy and Roland and the Cross of the sticks was not by accident.

  5. kalislash

    kalislash Valued Member

    So it may have similarities with the sinawali a diagonal weaving or using two weapons crossing each other,in indonessian bahasa language means flowing river or water.
  6. Pat OMalley

    Pat OMalley Valued Member

    The art od Sinawali is called, beleive it or not 'SINAWALI' and not Kali, I am in the Philippines right now and still cannot find anything past the mid 20th Centuary that refers to Kali being the original name for the art right across the Philippines, in fact a couple of Masters have mentioned to me that this beleif is a myth.

    OH! by the way Bgile, we have just attended the World 'Kali Sports' Championships and all agree that no one term has presidence over the other.

    And as for your notion of the government wanting Arnis to be the name used for the sport, the event was organised by the World Arnis Alliance, the Philippine Council of KALI Arnis Eskrima Masters, 9both of which I am a member of, it also had governement backing and was called 'KALI SPORTS', so you see I have no problem using the term Kali, I just beleive that proof of anyone term claiming to superceed others has to be shown before making extravigent claims.

    And GM Remy was not refering to Kali when mentioning the weaving of two sticks, he like everyone else calls this practice Sinawali.

    Arnis is Eskrima is Kali is Arnis is Eskrima is FMA and FMA is far more than just those 3, lets not forget Dumog, Yaw Yan, Sikaran etc etc etc, all of these too are FMA and all are equal in name and term and no one of these terms holds presidence over the others.

    Best regards

  7. shootodog

    shootodog restless native

    can i get an AMEN on that?

  8. shootodog

    shootodog restless native

    can i get an AMEN on that?

  9. BGile

    BGile Banned Banned

    Arnis is Eskrima is Kali is Arnis is Eskrima is FMA and FMA is far more than just those 3, lets not forget Dumog, Yaw Yan, Sikaran etc etc etc, all of these too are FMA and all are equal in name and term and no one of these terms holds presidence over the others.

    Hi Pat,

    I am figuring you have had no problems with the weather and hope you are comfortable and enjoying yourself.

    Your above statement is interesting as to the idea of precedence. I am not sure I am trying to place a precident on this, but, it has been done by others who have written books.

    For example Mark V. Wiley wrote a book titled, "Filipino Martial Culture".
    At the end of the book he broke down various systems and styles into Modern, Classical and Ancient.

    The author mentions the ancient system was Kali and has mentioned that, "many feel as you are saying, that most of the systems are the same, without a preference". But the author goes on to explain why some are more ancient then others and "Kali" being in the Ancient catagory.

    Chapter 27, page 307
    The Classification and Ethos of Filipino Martial Traditions.

    It is an interesting read.

    Most of what I have written and mentioned is from books that are written mentioning the age of Kali, these have substaniated and guided my thoughts.
    The book that I have just referenced is one of several so far. I have mentioned others, as I have written in prior posts.

    Hope you are enjoying yourself, I wish you a safe trip and good weather.

    Last edited: Dec 15, 2006
  10. kalislash

    kalislash Valued Member

    All of the Filipino must unite what-ever style they have they must also join some sports like arnis so they may enjoy everything. MALIGAYANG PASKO AT MANIGONG BAGONG TAON to all my brothers in FMA .
  11. Pugil

    Pugil Seeker of truth

    Kali (KA-mot LI-hok)

  12. Gajah Silat

    Gajah Silat Ayo berantam!

    We must remember that the the political division between Eastern Indonesia and the Southern Fillipines was a colonial division. Culturally & linguistically the two areas are very closely related.

    I will try to find out what Kali means in the indigenous languages of the Indonesian islands closest to the S. Fillipines.

    Just out of pure curiosity like :)

    This thread eminds me of all disagreement/ speculation over the word Silat :rolleyes: :p

    Edit: Probably a really stupid idea. I thought ah, Maluku is close and had a quick google only to find this :eek:

    then Fillipines

    Probably a job for some Malayo-polynesian linguistic professor (if one exists) :love:
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2006
  13. BGile

    BGile Banned Banned

    Regarding Kali

    Again I will reference a book written by Jeff Imada. The Balisong Manuel written in 1984.

    He states in the History of the Balisong knife that it dates back to 800AD.

    He mentions it is one of the ancient weapons of Kali, the ancestral art of all the Malaya-Polynesian fighting systems. Goes on to say Kali's domain was rooted in the Malay archipelago, but its scope of influence reached far beyond its territorial sphere. It is in the Orient and Africia, the Pacific Islands, Central and South America.

    He goes on to mention that Kali was and still is considered the art of the arts.
    He mentions some legends and feat's of the "butterfly knife" which was referred to as the "Vientinueve" which means 29 for the number of men a person killed while using that particular style of knife.

    Again I believe that Kali is the older of the arts. Since it was pre-Spain and the other arts were a meshing of Kali with Arnis and Escrima that came from the Spanish.

    I look at it like the United States, it is a country with many states, one of them was first others came later. Now they are United but still have the right to be recognized in the order of arrival.

    I believe you are doing the original a disservice by trying to say the others are all equal. They may be equal as far as a Martial art but one is older than the others.

    The one I believe oldest is "Kali" and I have mentioned many sources to reinforce my thinking about it.

  14. Gajah Silat

    Gajah Silat Ayo berantam!

    Well Bgile, from the 13th C. until the Spanish arrived the S. Fillipines were under the control of the Mahapajit Empire, which some Silat styles claim to trace their roots back to(& some further back to the Srivijaya empire & beyond!)

    It is entirely feasible that an empire with an evolved military would influence all fighting styles across the whole region, is it not? Be they blade, stick or empty hand, there is common ground from Malaysia via Indonesia to the Fillipines.

    Incidentally, the last remaining vestige of the Majapahit era are the Tenggerese who number around 600,000 and live on the slopes of Mount Bromo in East Java. Many still speak the archaic form of Javanese from that era-a language which once would have dominated the whole region, including the pre-Spanish Fillipines :eek:
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2006
  15. Limbas

    Limbas Valued Member

    How can kali be older when the people who use this term used to call their system arnis or escrima? Or learned their art from arnis/escrima groups?
  16. BGile

    BGile Banned Banned

    Good question limbas

    I believe some did and some did not. But we still have not answered the original question that the original poster asked.

    I have only been intent on making a good foundation as to the oldness of Kali not to its definition. I have mentioned it before, I am of the opinion the word was around long ago in the form of the sword and was the reason for its use.

    I was hoping others could clairify the term as in what does it mean in a language that it might have been used in. I believe the closest is the swords that have been mentioned.

    But it really has turned into a modern day political situation rather than looking for its true meaning.

    Silat has been mentioned as another form of Kali and is similar to the definition problem we are having with Kali. According to a book I have on the subject it is from Arabic, and we could say the same for Kali because of the sword the Arabic's used. ( Book again... The Malay Art of Self Defense, written by Sheikh Shamsuddin).

    It is really not that difficult to establish which is older, it is hard to establish which term should be used. Arnis, Escrima, Kali, or the others that have been mentioned

    Again back to my original statement as to clans and clannish behavior or fiefdoms. It all boils down to that IMHO. If that offends. Sorry about that.

    But it does appear, there is a group of people that Pat has been with and they are using all the terms as interchangable. That is good (political) but it still does not relieve the responsibility of others to the older, to be able to say "I am the oldest and therefore deserve the rank that should be given me as being the oldest".

    Lets put this into proper perspective. In the old days ( and today) they could all unite and say we are truly the same during the day. Then in the evening a few drinks are consumed and then the topic comes up and the fight's ensue.

    The winners are not right, but they will feel vindicated if they did win.

    Still will not change the fact that Kali is older. IMHO.

    I believe that is the reason Guro Dan has gone to teaching what he does, Kali and Silat. For he believes in what I have mentioned in a few paragraphs, they are closer to the original then Arnis and Escrima. The names are older since Escrima and Arnis come from the Spanish.

    Realizing that the Islands had a fighting technique long before the Spanish arrived. It is again a very simple explanation. The Muslims and Hindus and Chinese were there a decade prior, and even earlier, if you eliminate the Muslim terms.

    Pat, I would apprecialte it if you would drop the term "troll" for that is a pretty weak arguement. One not befitting this conversation, it only weakens your ability for a fair or proper discourse.

    Regards, Gary
  17. oosh

    oosh Valued Member

    "It is really not that difficult to establish which is older, it is hard to establish which term should be used. Arnis, Escrima, Kali, or the others that have been mentioned"

    Yeah you're right it's not that hard, Kali appeared in the 20th century and the others somwhere in 16th/17th century :D Which should be used ? that's up to the system head to decide, all terms are acceptable with the correct historical background. The propogation of the kali myth has done a great deal for the spread of FMA - check out GM Yuli Romo's interview in FMAdigest - he is open and honest about 'riding' along with Guro Dan's propogation of the word and the myth in the States as a tool to promote FMA.
  18. Pugil

    Pugil Seeker of truth

    Kali was/is an Indian Goddess too!

    Amen to that!

    Let's face it, 'Kali' is a great name. I like it a lot. It's been a great marketing tool for promoting the Filipino Martial Arts, especially in America.

    Do I believe it to be 'The Mother Art'? No, I'm sorry, I do not. As far as I can see there has been no real evidence put forward to support that claim.

    I'm afraid it's not enough to simply quote what a few people have stated in books and interviews either. That doesn't prove anything.

    As I said, I like the name and will continue to use it. When asked where it comes from, and what it means, I will, continue to explain that I believe it to be an acronym of Kamot and Lihok - the sudy of the motion of hand and body in relation to [Filipino] close-quarter combat.

  19. BGile

    BGile Banned Banned

    Floro V and Ben Largusa= Kali

    The above is correct I believe, if all what I have read is correct and most of it is related to the simple determination of Kali, it would be the two in the title. Dan Inosanto studied hands on with most of the Masters that are of true importance regarding the lineage of what he teach's now.

    I have to admit that I am some what prejudice to what Dan Inosanto mentions. I have been to many of his seminars, and the seminars of his Amigos Richard Bustillo and Larry Hartsell, then to his students seminars. The one of choice for me is Rick Faye.

    The hard part about learning from Rick is he is in Minn. so most of the time it is easier to study with the original men.
    Dan, Richard and Larry, for they are in CA and along with Gene LeBell and Gokor you have a very complete art. Not to mention one of the best in the business is Hanshi Bruce Juchnik.

    My personal favorite is my friend and teacher Pat Kelly who I have studied with for many many years and have known him since the early 90's. He is a student of the persons I have mentioned also.

    In fact next year I have heard that in Las Vegas Guro Dan Inosanto and Hanshi Bruce will be together sometime in the summer months. It is a weekend of many good things happening but very far apart. One is the GOE and Kenpo Hall of Fame, being in IL. the other is the one I have already discussed.

    Back to Kali.
    My money is on Guro Inosanto as always. History wise and making history for FMA, the man is the leader. As far as the other arts go Hanshi Bruce is very good and he has some good credentials.

    But, not only being able to have learned from them I study on my own and read lots of material and not just single minded either. Their are many clues but most seem to fail to observe the obvious. The sword.

    I find lots of misquotes among these thread's about things, but it is hard to undue what is done. So all I can mention, I have pretty much done in this thread so far.

    Pretty long winded and sort of a "so mote it be" statement.

  20. Pugil

    Pugil Seeker of truth

    "Masters... of true importance..."

    So are you saying that there are no "...Masters... of true importance..." left in the Philippines? Or are you saying that they have all visited the Mr Inosanto in the United States? For as I understand it, he has not been to the Philippines.

    I could be mistaken, and my questions and comments are not meant, and should not be seen, as any kind of slur on Mr Inosanto, of course.

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