Traditional Cimande

Discussion in 'Silat' started by Kiai Carita, Jan 14, 2006.

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  1. Kiai Carita

    Kiai Carita Banned Banned

    Peace to all,

    I was browsing through O'ong Maryono's website and found an article about traditional Cimande written in Indonesian. For those interested I have done a rough translation of the Indonesian text on Here it is:

    Everyone wanting to study Cimande must first of all state his (her) readiness to obey the honored rules and customs of Cimande. To do this (s)he must pass through a series of traditional ceremonies and rituals such as a seven day fast beginning on a Monday or a Thursday. After that the person wishing to be a Cimande student must recite the Cimande Oath (Patalekan Cimande) promising to:

    1. Obey and be devoted to Allah and the Prophet Muhammad s.a.w.
    2. Never rebel against parents, teacher, or king.
    3. Never gamble or steal.
    4. Never be proud, think you are great or be arrogant.
    5. Never commit adultery, lie, or commit trickery.
    6. Never get drunk and smoke opium.
    7. Never be cruel to God’s Creations.
    8. Never pick without permission, take without asking.
    9. Never be jealous and hateful and always pay back debts.
    10. Always be polite and humble and value humanity.
    11. Studying Cimande is not be become a hero, to become proud and to become tough but rather it is to survive in this world and in the hereafter.

    The Patalekan Cimande is explained thoroughly and over and over so that the student really understands and his (her) hand is taken by the teacher as a sign of readiness to follow the oaths. Then the teacher will recite a tawasul do’a and drop some sirih water into the student’s eyes (called dipeureh) in a ceremony called keceran, meant to make the eyes sharp.

    Basically Cimande functions as a media of propagating Islam and because of that obedience to Allah and his Prophet s.a.w, or obedience to the Syariah must be obeyed by members of the Cimande family. Cimande gives meaning to and also checks the animal desires (nafs) that bring destruction to all. This means Cimande is not meant for overpowering other humans. Essentially Talek Cimande is the spirit of the pencak. Without the Talek Cimande, Cimande pencak is like a corpse that omits a stifling stink.

    It seems to me that Cimande is traditionaly considered to be an Islamic art. If we agree that it was founded by Mbah Khoir who passed away in 1825 then it must have been very Islamic for at that time, just before the Jawa War, Islam was seen to be under attack from the colonialists and the Islamic identity was the stronghold of the anti-colonial movement.

    I understand that silat is believed to be older than Islam in Indonesia, however Cimande silat seems to be part of the traditional Islamic education. Does anyone on this forum practise this type of traditional Cimande?

    Warm salams to all,

  2. Ular Sawa

    Ular Sawa Valued Member

    I think you already know who all the Cimande practitioners are on this forum and this is just another of your pathetic attempts to start trouble. We may not practice Islam but we cherish the art we practice. You might re-read your list and aspire to live up to it yourself.
  3. Sekaralas

    Sekaralas New Member

    You may most certainly cherish your art, but what is being "politely" pointed out, is that it's a misnomer to call it Cimande ... or so it seems to me.

    Human movement and human spirituality has commonality across the entire spectrum. What the authentic Cimande is saying, is that the name is already taken and it has precepts & concepts associated with it.
    I'm sure if some other cultural group were to change aspects of NFL, then declare universally that it was NFL ... the authentic NFL camp would have a pink tizzy.

    This is I think one instance where one can experience the friction between civilisations. Each culture is pre-disposed to see the world, what is important etc through their individual lenses. Each culture has different sensibilities also. Javanese are very rarely are "up front" or "in your face" with anything, especially in communication. I myself am an anomaly ... hehe ... and am considered too rough a communicator. Kiai on the other hand is true to his culture in his method of communicating, and so it seems are others on this board (westerners for wont of a better description) who seem to consistently be rubbed the wrong way.

    A bit of digging reveals to me that there appears to be some bruised egos ... for what? For pointing out discrepencies to the original?
    Personally I think the "rotting corpse" bit is a bit rough - but what is seen as Cimande in the US, maybe should call it a new style, while acknowledging the genesis of the system. There is no problem to have discrepancies, no problem to individualise, no problem to acculturalise ... but be up front about it ... be proud of American/British silat, and call it that.

    Come to think of it, that's what happened in Java in many instances. We re-labelled the martial arts to fit our own culture. I'm sure that is true in most cultures ... but why doesn't it happen in the west? One can still respect the origins.

    Rahayu ... and cheers.
  4. Kiai Carita

    Kiai Carita Banned Banned

    Trouble Maker?

    Peace to all silat lovers,

    Wow, Ular Sawa you do easily get your knickers in a twist. I have never attemped to 'start trouble' as you accuse and neither is this post, though it seems that any mention of Cimande does get people like you and a few others on the defensive. I find this a very intruiging phenomenon and it made me wonder why so I did several searches on the net.

    Browsing on other web-forums I have discovered that this attitude has been a characteristic of discussions about a particular Cimande. It appears that 'trouble' in Cimande discussions have been going on for some time, long before I ever visited this site! All thinking people may discuss Cimande and talk about it just like anyone is entitled to talk about expressionism in painting.

    Back to my translation from O'ongs website: Did you know about this Patalekan? I had never seen it written down before and when I found it I thought that some members of this forum might be interested. Obviousely you are not but that does not make me a 'trouble maker', does it? In fact I believe that an objective third party would say your post is the one looking for trouble. You using words like 'your pathetic attempt' is plain insulting as I spent time translating that Patalekan for free -usualy I get paid good dollar for translating!

    Do you know all the Cimande practitioners on this forum, Ular Sawa? I don't, and from those who do I understand that there are several schools / styles represented here. In London alone there is Cimande in Hendon, there is Cimande taught by Gavin, and there is Cimande taught informally by Haji Mangipin in the Seven Sisters Naqshbandi mosque. People from all these three Cimande 'centers' in London use this forum. There are also several Americans and a Frenchman who I have met through this forum who practise Cimande. One even makes balur Cimande! So there are at least five Cimande sources on this forum.

    I am sure that not all the Cimande practitioners on this forum are as sensitive and defensive as you. You claim to cherish the art you practise but when I offer some authentic information you reject it rudely. How can you claim to cherish Cimande and reject discussions about it?

    In this forum I have been accussed of coming to England for economic reasons. I have been accussed of being a sarong peddler who has had no silat training and I have been accussed of begging people to come to my kembangan do in Camden for private gain. Last I was accussed of discussing politics rather than silat, and a slanderous post against me as an individual was kindly put up before the moderator locked the thread. All these untrue accussations were from someone who is claimed to be a Guru Besar of a certain Cimande, and I have ignored them all exactly because I do not want trouble. In my mind silat is for making friends and finding God, not for making trouble, so I ignore the childish attempts to put me down and continue to post quality, informed, opinions about silat and the culture surrounding it on this site. I wish that you guys could produce quality posts as well for all of us to read.

    It can't be right that all thoughts regarding Cimande must be in line with the thinking of your particular Cimande or else you lot jump the news-bearer. I hope this just a mistaken observation on my side and that the truth is most of you are open minded silat lovers, and those of you who act like members of a sect are just a vocal minority.

    Sincerely warm salams to all,

  5. Narrue

    Narrue Valued Member

    I don’t know much on the subject but I would assume that even if Mbah Khoir invented Cimande was he not heavily influenced by things he seen in Silat at that period. What percentage of Cimande was taken from older arts?
  6. Jawara

    Jawara New Member

    Hi Everyone,

    Remember me? I'm the poor slob who never got an answer to the Irianjaya Silat question. It just so happens that I have practiced Cimande for some time. My teacher is Mang Dadang from Bogor.

    Over here I see all these people talking about Kahir being the founder of Cimande, but that is not the story I heard in Bogor. Most of the Sundanese people I have talked to told me that Cimande was founded before this Kahir person - I won't say the name, but if anyone on this forum knows what I am talking about please PM me and we'll compare notes.

    The best Cimande that I saw in this part of the world was from Pendekar Herman Suwanda (God rest his soul) I used to go to his camps every year.

  7. Kiai Carita

    Kiai Carita Banned Banned

    Who taught Mbah Khoir?

    Peace to all,

    Good question Narrue, I have been asking that question myself but have got no answers. Mbah Khoir was said to have won a fight with a Macao fighter and must have been influenced by Chinese arts too. To what extent we might not ever know.

    Throughout history Indonesia has been the cross-roads of trade and culture between China and India and there are many ties with both cultures plus all the cultures between these two ancient super-powers, since before recorded history here. We take what impresses us and we make it our own, just like what happened relatively recently with Mustika Kwitang which was originally a Chinese art but now is Pencak Silat.

    Acording to O'ong Maryono's research Jakarta (used to be Batavia) has the most schools of traditional silat. An interesting fact is that Jakarta also has the most Chinese temples in Jawa and much Chinese influence in language and in theatre. However we also know that the first historical kingdom in Jawa (Tarumanegara, Tarum=indigo Negara=State) was in West Jawa. Banten was a powerfull Islamic state until relatively recently, and with the Cirebon Sultanate introduced debus to Jawa through the activities of a Sufi tarekat. So we have historical proof that debus is older than Mbah Khoir's Cimande but have no idea what the silat behind that debus was like.

    Who taught Mbah Khoir and his wife silat before he invented Cimande and what was it like? Anyone have a clue? I would say that the silat Mbah Khoir learned before inventing Cimande must have been taught to him in a madrassah, while he was a child and a young man. It must have been connected to debus and the martial arts of other Muslims, namely Chinese and Gujarati.

    Warm salams to all

  8. Ular Sawa

    Ular Sawa Valued Member

    No KC, I don't easily get my knickers in a twist. I have seen you taking shots at the art I practice more than once and disguise it with some sort of pleasantries. I viewed this as one more instance. I have even asked you previously to try and write things that will unite silat practitioners so we don't descend into this bickering. You always go back to this sort of thing and then express shock when someone objects. I had really hoped for better out of you.
  9. Gajah Silat

    Gajah Silat Ayo berantam!

    Pak Sekarlas dan Mas Kiai,

    Asalaam aleikum

    I agree that each culture percieves information through it's own cultural filter. I also understand the Javanese approach can be somewhat indirect as not to place the other person in a position of 'losing face'. In fact the directness of Westerners and particularly Americans is often the complete antithesis of the Eastern approach. In my experience the Javanese must do things in the correct manner!

    I see the crux of this matter as Islamic aspects of certain styles, Cimande being one of them. You are in effect saying that art now should not be refered to by it's Indonesian term as it is no longer whole because the Islamic aspect has been taken out.

    However, remember at some point these arts have been taught to non-Muslim Westerners by an Indonesian guru or pendekar. These teachers were surely Muslim?

    So, either the Islamic aspect must have been overlooked or emmited for non-believers. Why did this happen?

    In the case of Cimamde, the technical aspect is surely the same, however, can it still be called Cimande?

    I personally don't know :confused: All else is personal opinions. I suppose in the end we must ask the gurus in Cimande
  10. Kiai Carita

    Kiai Carita Banned Banned

    Mbah Khoir's Elder

    Peace to all and a warm welcome to Jawara,

    Jawara, I did want to answer your Irianjaya silat question but as I had just had my hands slapped for coining the term Californian silat, I thought that it would be better to stay quiet as there are politics involved. First, the people of Irianjaya prefer to be caled West Papua (this is very political). Secondly, all the silat in West Papua comes from Western Indonesia and formidable silat players do they make I can tell you. The people of the many tribes in West Papua have different fighting methods that as far as I am aware of, have never been studied, although it appears that the bow and arrow is the preffered traditional weapon there. The bows are deadly and accurate for only a short distance and are always backed up with spears.

    About the origins of Cimande, I have also heard from Sundanese Cimande practitioners that there is an elder before Mbah Khoir and his tomb is still venerated by thousands but kept secret from outsiders because to many people come to his grave and take some earth from it. He is not called Mbah (which means grand-dad(ma), from the lower class) but rather he is called Eyang (Eyang means grand-dad(ma) of aristocracy). His initials are Eyang KS, the KS sometimes being one word, sometimes two, and comprise of ten letters. Are we talking of the same man? If Mbah Khoir has a disticntly Islamic name, Eyang KS has a more traditional Sundanese name.

    Warm salaams to all,

  11. Sekaralas

    Sekaralas New Member

    From my perspective, it is you Ular Sawah who owes Kiai an apology.

    <MAP is an English speaking forum, please abide by at least that rule, as it is rude to speak in languages others do not understand!>

    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 14, 2006
  12. Sekaralas

    Sekaralas New Member

    Halo Gajah Silat! So you have some Javanese and you live in UK? Interesting.
    Ya, IMO if one picks and chooses elements of a whole, then what one is doing is re-packaging to suit an individual purpose ... in a sense one has created something 'new', a new 'whole' as it were.
    When one sells that package publically, one should IMO call it what it is. There is no reason that the new cannot acknowledge it's major influence etc ... but it's disrespectful to assume the identity of something one is not.

    Last edited: Jan 14, 2006
  13. Gajah Silat

    Gajah Silat Ayo berantam!

    <MAP is an English speaking forum, please abide by at least that rule, as it is rude to speak in languages others do not understand!>

    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 14, 2006
  14. Kiai Carita

    Kiai Carita Banned Banned

    Jawa Timur?

    <MAP is an English speaking forum, please abide by at least that rule, as it is rude to speak in languages others do not understand!>

    I am also from Jawa Timur, not far from the last train station before Jawa Tengah. Do you live in London? We should get together in little Indonesia sometime.

    Salam to your wife!

    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 14, 2006
  15. silatliam

    silatliam Valued Member

    Hello Kiai
    Once again you at it despite the letter you got from the moderator of this forum you still use it to make your sniping remarks as you quoted in your letter as follows

    "In this forum I have been accussed of coming to England for economic reasons. I have been accussed of being a sarong peddler who has had no silat training and I have been accussed of begging people to come to my kembangan do in Camden for private gain. Last I was accussed of discussing politics rather than silat, and a slanderous post against me as an individual was kindly put up before the moderator locked the thread. All these untrue accussations were from someone who is claimed to be a Guru Besar of a certain Cimande, and I have ignored them all exactly because I do not want trouble. In my mind silat is for making friends and finding God, not for making trouble, so I ignore the childish attempts to put me down and continue to post quality, informed, opinions about silat and the culture surrounding it on this site. I wish that you guys could produce quality posts as well for all of us to read. "

    well first of all to ansewer your questions Yes I do know about the oath and have took it except I was asked if I found it more comfortable I didnt have swear to Prophet Mohammed but instead to our Ssaviour Jesus Christ as I'm a christian. These rules are not a problem as any good person of high morals should be living this life wheither they do Silat or not. However I dont ask any of my students to swear an oath to Prohet Mohammed as I dont believe that Cimande is art form where you have to be Muslim to do it. However I think its very hypocritical you writing about these rules its abit like "People in greenhouse shouldnt throw stones" I also took part in the water cermoney as have a number of my students along with other rituals. Please feel free to come along to my class and inform me or my students that our Cimande isnt authenic or wouldnt work I would like to see you demostrate to my students where it lacks in.

    Now onto the second part since I'm the Guru Besar you hinting at, than please try and tell me where Im wrong at

    1) Are you not in the Uk for encomics reasons?? Are you not registered with the Inland Revenue and have a visa for selling Indonesian goods in London at Camdem. I know Inland Revenue dont have you down as Kiai but instead your real name *(which you are afraid to use on this internet) So where was I wrong there?????

    2) Sarong Peddar Did you not approach people in the Silat community here in the Uk to buy your sarongs and did you not write on these forums under a different thread telling people you were going to Indonesia and if they want things brought back to email you. Is that not using this forum for more than martial arts???.

    3)"Begging people to come to your KEMBANGAN"event Well did you not send a number of letters and phone calls to our London Rep Gavin along with contacting me pleading with us to attend your event and the rehersals before it ( and remember we were one of the first to help you. Which was by your action since an event to furthur your name which is what you do on this forum.

    4) "we claim you dont do silat " Kiai you told us you didnt do silat and so far by what we seen of you, you cant really do what little you seem to know of it. Please remember the roof top garden practise session when you try to counter on of students??? So tell me Kiai where are the lies here?

  16. Sekaralas

    Sekaralas New Member

    Hebat! Darimana di Jatim?
  17. Sekaralas

    Sekaralas New Member

    Wah Silatliam! I cannot see an attack, are you frightened of shadows?

    As has already been said, there are many different sub-styles of Cimande around in the west who might find the information useful ... at least from a historical sense.

    I would have thought that some people would appreciate some extra information that might not be so easy to get. It's a pity your ego gets in the way, for everybody elses sake ... because I predict ... how long before this discussion is locked because you don't like the contents?
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2006
  18. Kiai Carita

    Kiai Carita Banned Banned

    Peace to all,

    Silatliam, your small mindedness surely is an embarassement to your school! Please read my answers to your accusations.

    1. Everyone who works in the UK is registerd with Inland Revenue but not everyone working there is there for economic reasons. I am not in England for economic reasons.

    2.I am in Indonesia now. I came with a full suitcase and wil be going back with an empty one. I am willing to get silat stuff for people who want things that are hard to find here. For instance, selendangs, destars, but I think that I never mentioned sarongs.

    3.I invited many people to the kembangan and many came. Only you say that I begged. A pity only Gavin came from your school because other people came with large groups.

    4.I don't do silat, and am only beginning to study it. I began in 1983 and still now cannot do one move properly. Gavin threw me in a buah application just like my son and daughter always throw me! You are right there Silatliam, Gavin is very good and as you are his trainer you must be even better!

    Silatliam please read my posts properly! I know the moderator of this forum is one of your students. Lets see whether he kicks me out of this forum because of your bullying or does he have a clear heart and mind of his own.

    Warm salaams to all,

  19. Gajah Silat

    Gajah Silat Ayo berantam!

    I understand that there are some very emotive issues being discussed but can everyone please treat each other with respect.

    Please do not bring shame onto the Silat that unites us all by resorting to personal insults in any guise.

    Please do not turn intellectual disagreements into personal issues

    can we not have respectful and polite disagreement?
  20. serakmurid

    serakmurid Valued Member

    I agree with Gajah Silat,please don't be too harsh with each other. We in the West are trying to understand and promote your wonderful arts. Political in-fighting will surely drive people away. I have heard there people who don't wish to study with me because of exactly those reasons in regards with the art that I study, Serak. So I am much the worse for that.
    I must put in my own 2 cents. What my teacher has told me about Cimande agrees with Kiai Carita. Pak Victor knows and taught a well-known Cimande teacher. I met a wonderful Cimande Guru, Mas Ronald Kotuuk from Sulawesi (I believe) he shared many Langkas and some bela diri at last years Ring of Fire in Las Vegas. He was very warm and friendly to me.
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2006
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