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Monday, March 24, 2008


Hobby on martial arts is important. Its because martial arts are systems of codified practices and traditions of training for fighting and self defence. Some martial arts are linked to spiritual or religious beliefs/philosophies such as Islam, Buddhism, Daoism or Shinto while others have their own spiritual/non-spiritual code of honour.

The word 'martial' was originated from the name of Mars, the Roman god of war. The term 'Martial Arts' literally means arts of Mars. This term comes from 15th century Europeans who were referring to their own fighting arts that are today known as Historical European martial arts. A practitioner of martial arts is referred to as a martial artist.

Photo : One technique from Silat Penjuritan Kepetangan Melayu. This photo was taken from their blog.

Some of famous martial arts :
1) Judo
2) Taekwondo
3) Aikido
4) Kalari Payat
5) Malaysian Silat
6) Qigong
7) Karate-Do
8) Shoalin Kungfu
9) Wushu
10) Boxing
11) Muay Thai
12) Brazil Capoeira
13) Wing Chun
14) Wresling
15) Indian Silambam
16) Others....

In Malaysia, despite of foreign martial arts such as Taekwondo, Muay Thai, Kalari Payat and others; we also have our own martial arts which originated from Malaysia or others Malay region like Indonesia; called SILAT.

Silat is an umbrella term used to describe the martial art forms practiced throughout the Malay Archipelago. Silat is a combative art of fighting and survival and it has been evolved in Indonesia and Malaysia civilizations for centuries into social culture and tradition. During the colonization era, both in Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei Darussalam as British colonies and in Indonesia as Dutch colonies, practitioners (locally known as pesilat) used the martial art as a form to liberate from foreign authorities.

The distinctive forms of silat with other Asian martial arts, such as kung fu, tae kwon do or karate, lie on the cultural aspect. Silat is not only for combative purposes. When accompanied with traditional instruments, such as kendang, silat transforms into a folk dance. In Minangkabau area (the West Sumatra province of Indonesia), silat was the oldest men's tradition known as silek and it is one of the components to perform the Minangkabau folk dance of randai. In Malaysia, one form of silat known of silat pulut also shows the harmonic silat styles as a dance accompanied by traditional instruments. A silat form in West Java province of Indonesia, known as pencak, is usually accompanied with music, notably by the traditional Sundanese suling instrument.

When I searching for some materials for my material arts issue, I accidentally found this silat penjuritan kepetangan melayu website. To be honest, I never heard about this kind of silat in Malaysia. Names like Silat Gayong, Silat Cekak Hanafi, Silat Cekak, Silat Sendeng, Silat Olahraga even Silat Pulut, I know. But, This Silat not in my vocubulary. From my reading (thru their website and blog), I think their silat is influence by nature. Some of their technique is copyright from seeing bat or chicken behaviors (please correct me if I'm wrong...).

But what I like their philosophy a lot is their effort to educate younger generation to learn this silat. For them, "there 2 main reasons you should feel notable about conducting children class. The first reason is to be able to educate able self defense, to give them a chance to protect themselves or their loving ones in times of need. The alarming increasing rate of crime against children, does make the impression the knowledge pass on will be use rightfully. Secondly the chance to further educate the next generations about our culture and heritage".

Photo : Silat Penjuritan Kepetangan Melayu encourage younger generation to join their silat. This photo was taken from their blog.

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