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Author Topic: A Secret Gathering: It was 20 years ago , , ,  (Read 9322 times)
Crafty_Dog
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« on: April 03, 2008, 01:05:57 AM »

Woof All:

As we complete our 20th year of the Dog Brothers, on April 4, 5, and 6 some 20 odd members of the Tribe plus a few friends will be getting together at a secret location to re-enact the Creation of the Dog Brothers, known in our lore as "The Rumble at Ramblas" wherein those there fought for three days.

I have no idea how much posting I will be doing here during this time. wink

The Adventure continues,
Crafty Dog
Guidiing Force of the Dog Brothers

PS:  We are shooting this with an eye to making a movie along the lines of "Pumping Iron meets Tao of the Dog Brothers"
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Guide Dog
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« Reply #1 on: April 07, 2008, 12:16:21 AM »

I will say nothing about the event except that this past weekend was amazing!  Safe journey to all of those flying home.  Safe driving to all of those on the road.   wink
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Dr. Bryan Stoops, Ed.D.
Semi-Private/Private Instruction
Offered in Chino Hills, California
JKD/FMA/Silat/muay Thai/DBMA,
Savate/Wing Chun/grappling
http://stoops-martial-arts-academy.com/
bryan@stoopsma.com
PhilipG
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« Reply #2 on: April 07, 2008, 11:22:05 AM »

Ouch, woof, wag wag,

Thanks for the memories.

sleddog
« Last Edit: April 07, 2008, 11:25:11 AM by PhilipG » Logged
Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #3 on: April 07, 2008, 11:34:33 AM »

Woof All:

A hearty how of respect to all who were there for an extraordinary experience.

Now that it is over, please feel free to post at length about it.

TAC
Crafty Dog
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Scotty Dog
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It's Only a flesh wound


« Reply #4 on: April 07, 2008, 12:21:05 PM »

As I type this I'm on a Laptop in a Min-Van heading back from the campsite as such please excuse the spelling and grammer.

This Weekend has been a turning point for me in a number of ways, All of them good.

Each and every time I fight at a Gathering I discover something new about myself, some new depth that I never new existed before. I'm glad to say most of what I find is for the good. This time however, whatever powers guide our journey through life decided I had a really important lesson to learn. How to cope with disappointment.

About a year and a half ago I had major head surgery to hopefully correct a hearing defect. This was my third Gathering since the initial surgery and even though the Doc's had cleared me as back to full health, I was never comfortable fighting since. My chatter wasn't louder, but in someway it was deeper. The thought of three full days of this made this deeper still. To cut a Long story short I fought twice & suffered a concussion, which moved me from the realm of fighter to the realm of witness. To have invested so much emotion and time in preparing for this and then to fall so early was crushing. However, as is the way of the Gatherings, only you are responsible for you. To me this means that while I may not have direct control over every action that happens, I do have control over my reaction to those actions.

After a lot of soul searching and the guidance of Crafty, I started to view the experience in a different way. I've never watched a gathering before without fighting. I'd never had the chance to see the nobility and humility of the fighters from the outside. I'd also not realized how not being able to fight had changed my inner chatter from the post operation doubts, to an overwhelming desire to fight again.

For all my frustrations and my initial performance, this Gathering has renewed my fire for this and shown me just how amazing a group of people are involved in this. It's made me feel prouder than ever to be a part of this. For me this Gatherings lesson has been one of the deepest and most profound yet.

Thanks again to all my Brothers who looked after me and never for a second excluded me or let me feel bad about not being able to fight.
« Last Edit: April 09, 2008, 12:53:58 PM by C-Scotty Dog » Logged

"Cos Beliefs, are just that. They're nothing, they're how your taught and raised. That doesn't make them real...
Everything you've learned is in fact just learned & not necessarily true"

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peregrine
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« Reply #5 on: April 07, 2008, 12:43:51 PM »

Woof-
a wonderful experience that deserves multiple pages of writtings by different fighters and witnesses. Something everyone there will remember.



Respect to all who fought and supported us.
Many a new candidates, a few new dogs, a few full dog brothers and congratulation to Doggzilla your dream of becoming an elder has come true.

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Guide Dog
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« Reply #6 on: April 07, 2008, 01:00:23 PM »

My key memories of the past three days:

1. Receiving praise from Dogzilla for something he thought I did well during our fight
2. Receiving a suggestion from Dogzilla about something he thought I needed to improve from what he saw during our fight.
3. Surviving my fight with Dogzilla
4. Getting Guro Lonely into a camel toe, only to have him reverse it a few moments later, take me down, and hit me with a beautiful (but very controlled) elbow
5. Having been there to see Pappy Dog and Red Dog's inspirational stick and knife fight
6. Dirt, horse poo, and dirt mixed with horse poo
7. Not wearing sun screen on the first day.  cry
8. Reflecting on how far some folks (Pennsylvania, Canada, Europe, Tahiti!) came to be part of the event.
9. Feeling great the first day, feeling terrible the second day, feeling transformed the third day
10. Amazing drumming that helped provide energy from places hidden in the spirit
11. Watching Sled Dog, who was there at the beginning, and who was there two decades later, step out again and again and later having him honor me with a fight (which turned out to be one of my favorite DB fights I have ever had)
12. Hearing about how martial arts saved one of our brother's life
13. Watching Poi Dog work.  There's classical stuff there mixed with raw power, speed, tactics, and strategy.  He's a damned fine stickfighter.
14. Watching Pappy Dog work.  There's classical stuff there mixed with raw power, speed, tactics, and strategy.  He's a damned fine stickfighter.
15. My wife arriving at the fight site for day two, right as "Dog" Eric beat the tar out of me.  (Eric, again, your level of aggression is something I have to aspire to.  You bring it!)
16.  Fighting two fights on day two in those terrible suede gloves that I bought when my wife drove off with my gear.  I only did it because I said (on camera) that I would fight in them.  Again, my hands are swollen, but I honestly don't think anything is broken.

Lastly, the experience as a whole was amazing.  I enjoyed having three days to REALLY get to know some of the people that I have seen here and there at the Gatherings over the past couple years.  The one word that rally stands out to me about the event is: RESEARCH.  The group was out there to research in a nonjudgmental environment, what might actually have a chance of working in high pressure.  The group was out there to research just where the Tribe is at in this given moment.  The group was out there to research a greater world of expanded consciousness that seems to lie just beyond the world of getting up and working our 9 to 5's.  As I drove home, I was glad to have survived the three days, but I was in a state of disbelief.  I was glad that I didn't have to fight again but it was hard to believe what had just transpired.  While I was on the 15 freeway, I kept having this sense that I was outside of myself, watching.

I never played football in high school.  I've never been in a real (thank God) fight.  The city that I live in with my wife and 11 month old son is rated as one of the safest in the country.  I don't consider myself a "tough guy".

For those who were there:  HOW DID WE DO THAT?

What strikes me is that DBMA is there for everyone who wants it.  If I can be a DB, anyone can.  I have written a lot on this forum about using martial arts to change the world, and I really mean it.  I am scared that someday soon, my boy is going to look around at the world and then look back at me and ask, "What the &%$ did you guys do?", meaning that I could have done more to pass on a world that makes sense.  While changing the world might be a big leap from what happened this weekend, I don't think it has to be so big.  If we continue to find like-minded people who are willing to travel (some from GREAT distances) to evaluate the nature of aggression and we experience one tenth of the feeling of transcendence that seemed to come over the group on Sunday, then we are on the right track.

I know I've rambled, but I only have one more question, and I hope I'm not jumping the gun:

Do we REALLY have to wait 20 more years to do that again?  I don't mean this weekend, but...
« Last Edit: April 07, 2008, 01:03:01 PM by Guide Dog » Logged

Dr. Bryan Stoops, Ed.D.
Semi-Private/Private Instruction
Offered in Chino Hills, California
JKD/FMA/Silat/muay Thai/DBMA,
Savate/Wing Chun/grappling
http://stoops-martial-arts-academy.com/
bryan@stoopsma.com
Dog Pound
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« Reply #7 on: April 07, 2008, 03:05:29 PM »

Guide Dog - you fought great and you were fearless out there. It was fun and inspiring to watch you.

For me, the multiple days of fighting were a huge help.  I was not happy with my first day.  After listening to some of the wisdom in the pack (thank you Porn Star Dog and Dogzilla), a lot of soul searching, and no small amount of positive prayer from a good friend, I started the second day with a great fight against Red Dog.  That opened a path to fighting with a lot more honesty and joy for the rest of the Gathering.

If I had ended with the first day, it would have haunted me till the next Gathering, and that poor experience would have solidified and probably been much harder to work through.  With the pressure of coming back the next day, I had to solve it (or face two more days of unsatisfying beatings).  In addition to changing how I was fighting, I changed my stick (thank you Red Dog and especially Pappy Dog) and I went to a very light glove (thank you Poi Dog and Crafty for the encouragement).  The result was two days of very satisfying beatings (I don't normally bruise much, but I have some stick hickeys that are going to be with me for a week).

It was the transforming experience I was looking for from this Gathering.  The honor of being promoted to Dog Brother was a huge milestone for me, and hopefully the beginning of further and deeper transformations.
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Kaju Dog
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« Reply #8 on: April 07, 2008, 05:23:06 PM »

Just a quick post to share some of my "Stick Hickies" from the weekend.   cool grin cool

Damn it's good to feel alive. 

Sorry the pics are huge... huh 

show me yours...   wink

Thank you all.

From a proud owner of new stick hickies...









 grin cool
« Last Edit: April 07, 2008, 05:26:31 PM by loyalonehk » Logged

Sheep Dog
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« Reply #9 on: April 07, 2008, 06:02:16 PM »

A very quick thank you to all the fighters, to Marc, and the people behind the scenes who made this possible. Special thanks to Dean for the medical aid (and great fight).
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Guard Dog
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« Reply #10 on: April 07, 2008, 08:20:19 PM »

I'm at a loss for words concerning this weekend.  Somthing special happened, magical also comes to mind.  It's hard to explain, but everyone who was there knows what I am talking about.  I am glad to have been part of it.

Woof!

Gruhn
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Ryan “Guard Dog” Gruhn
Guro / DBMAA Business Director
Dog Brothers Martial Arts Association
"Smuggling Concepts Across the Frontiers of Style”
ryan@dogbrothers.com | www.dogbrothers.com
vorpalblade
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« Reply #11 on: April 07, 2008, 08:31:28 PM »

First fight; fear! joy! alive!
Kase - shared his fists, stick and fear
Honored by his gift

-vp

« Last Edit: April 07, 2008, 08:36:15 PM by vorpalblade » Logged
Point Dog
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« Reply #12 on: April 08, 2008, 01:21:37 AM »

C-Scotty,

My heart goes out to you mate.  I kinda know how you must feel but I think your grief must run deeper than mine did, after booking my flights to the LA Gathering last year and then having to sit out on the blechers due to a torn meniscus.

I know how hard you trained for this and it's a pity that it had to go that way for you, but I hope that like me you found the oppertunity to sit and watch the fights an enjoyable and educational one.

To all the people who were there fighting, my respect goes out to all of you!   smiley

Looking forward to hearing some good 'warstories'  grin
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PhilipG
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« Reply #13 on: April 08, 2008, 06:24:40 AM »

There is a phenomenon in "older athletes" that the stiffness of exercise does not hit them on the first day after. I am now quite stiff, it is day 2 (post weekend). Moving around with tenderness in my extremities and not enough youth to mask my movement.

Had a great time. Initially it was hard to get going when I saw how high the level was. I had to ask myself if I was prepared to just be a mobile heavy bag for some of these young warriors? I finally came to my senses, realized that nothing of value is appreciated without some work, and came out swinging. Of course, now I wish I had started earlier and fought longer. These are thoughts that you have after you survive an encounter, not before.

It was my honor to have been there. Dog Brothers have a great future with this pack. Thanks Crafty for the invitation, thanks  Pappy and Linda for the hospitality, thanks Kase for the conversations, thanks everybody for the adventures that will grow into stories that could not possibly have happened, but they did.

Philip Sleddog Gelinas

« Last Edit: April 08, 2008, 06:29:30 AM by PhilipG » Logged
Howling Dog
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« Reply #14 on: April 08, 2008, 08:19:26 AM »

Woof, Thanks guys for all your posts, they resonate quite well. Please keep them comming.
Much respect to all those who participated and espically to those who lasted all 3 days stick fighting.
Thats a major accomplishment regardless of how many fights you pulled off each day.

C-Scotty, Doubtful anyone who knows you in the slightest would question how badly you wanted to get back out there, even after a concusion. One of my most vivid memories of you from the June gathering was you walking around with a ice bag on your wrist trying to get it back together enough to continue fighting. There are greater days ahead for those who push on.......

Sled Dog, as a guy whos getting older himself I can relate to the post activity soreness, keep swinging I'am, sure you represented the first generation dog brothers quite well.

Dog Dean, your post on the members site spoke very well........I think it would have a nice place on this thread as well. Hope to meet you soon. I will be at the Aug. gathering.....

Congrats to all those who advanced up the ranks, well deserved!!!
Even though I could'nt make this event just reading the threads, swells my heart with pride, knowing the quality and caliber of men who undertake and participate in the Dog Brothers gathering of the packs......I look forward to Aug. and seeing you all again as the pack will gather again.
much respect!! WELL DONE TO ALL!!!
                                                    Dog SB/TG
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Howling Dog
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« Reply #15 on: April 08, 2008, 09:00:04 AM »

 cool

First, thank you for the kind words and recognition.   This is just the begining.  I will always share what knowledge I have and If I dont have the right answer to the question, we will find the answer together.  No BS here... 

Always the student first. 

Woof...
 


Here is my reflection;

----------------------------------------------------------

Before the Gathering my mind was one of wuji (no extreme).  My focus was, as is most often, on the progression and growth of those (students) that have trusted me to guide them along their martial journey.   Once again I was welcome among Alpha Males, “Dog’s”, the pack welcomed me in as if I were an old friend.  Being that this was only my second gathering, I still had reservations.  Hesitation about coming across the wrong way (cocky/arrogant/overconfident) or even worse, scared.  My only concern was EARNING my place among the pack and representing my instructor (GM Harper) with Honor, Courage and Commitment. 

I am honored and have great respect for everyone that I have been fortunate to have spent time with so far.  Each and every one of you are Warriors and winners.  There was no one inside the Corral that I would not go to War with. 

As I watched (during the short time I had) and listened to all of you this weekend.  I found myself reminded of my “Sand Box” experience.  In the beginning of my tour we (My Marines and I) were all scared, nervous and concerned for our safety.  As the days past we gained confidence (not to be confused with complacency) in our training and our applicable skills.  The skills we owned got us through the rough times.

Mid way though my deployment, I started seeing a separation (the Warriors from the Cowards).  Many turned to religion or medical looking for a crutch.  I turned to my art and began to share my gifts with those that would join me in my rituals.  I saw those men gain confidence and peace through the distraction and beauty of martial arts training and development. 

The last few weeks/days of my tour, much like the gathering of the pack, I felt and saw Warriors struggle with the challenges of “Stepping Up” - one more time.  After surviving and beating the odds long enough there is a higher level of concern (consciousness) that goes along with combat situations.  I find myself thinking, “Will this be the fight that breaks my bones or caves in my skull?”  Likewise, “Will this be the time I go out the wire and get blown up or killed”. 

In the end, the Warrior within, barks at the moon and growls at the face of danger with an evil grin and says “Fuck It”  lets do this and let my training, courage, heart, will and skill get me through to a “Higher Consciousness through Harder Contact”. 

“Only you are responsible for you”…  but it’s nice knowing that my Dog Brothers , Marines and Ohana are my keepers and the Pack that plays together stays together. 

Much respect to all of you, this weekend it was my honor to be among you all.

PS. 

Sled Dog,
If it were not for the fact that I found out you, a Kaju GM, were one of the original DB’s.  I may have not kept sniffing around.  I first ran across DB’s site and material some 10+ yrs ago.  My training has been impacted by the Tribe every since, in some way or another.  I can only hope to be such an inspiration to the generations that follow me.

I have nothing but respect and admiration for you, Mahalo Nui Loa Sir.


Mahalo Nui Loa and Aloha everyone,

TAC,
Dog Dean
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pappydog
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« Reply #16 on: April 08, 2008, 03:24:51 PM »

There will be more later......However, I have give a Howl of appreciation to Guro CraftyDog and Pretty Kitty for putting on the event. If you ever planned a wedding, film shoot, military campaign, or fed up to 30 people, you know how much stress is involved. More later on how much fun it was....

Pappydog
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Dog Pound
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« Reply #17 on: April 08, 2008, 05:49:09 PM »

"The greater the dichotomy, the profounder the transformation. Higher Consciousness through Harder Contact."

My fight with Sheep Dog on the third day drove this idea home for me.  As we tapped in and began stalking and swinging on each other, we were joking like we were talking over a pitcher of beer.  There wasn't any fear or tension, even though we both knew each would put the other in the dirt if given the chance.  It was odd and enlightening.
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I don't know how many of them it would have taken to whip my ass, but I knew how many they were going to use. That's a handy little piece of information.
- Ron White

http://ironpunk.blogspot.com/
Poidog
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« Reply #18 on: April 08, 2008, 06:47:51 PM »

In the spirit of Dog Dean's photo fun, here's my contribution:
Broken nose - Thanks, Sheep Dog.
Stick hickey, ribs - Thanks, Dogzilla.
Stick hickey, left shoulder.
Stick hickey, right shoulder.
Stick hickey, left thigh - Thanks, Chris.

I'll write a post on my reflections in a little bit, but a quick thanks to all the fighters, the camera crew, the musicians, Crafty and Pretty Kitty for getting things organized and Dogzilla for the "broke da mout" grinds.

Aloha, Poi
« Last Edit: April 08, 2008, 06:52:53 PM by Poidog » Logged

Who dares wins - British SAS
Kaju Dog
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« Reply #19 on: April 08, 2008, 07:13:33 PM »

 afro cool afro cool grin
Woof! Wag, Wag...
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bjung
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« Reply #20 on: April 08, 2008, 10:54:08 PM »

I missed day three, but I heard that there were some great fights. It was glad to meet a lot of the people from the board and put names to faces. I'm amazed at the heart and skill that people displayed over multiple days of fighting. I want to give a shout out to Corey and the Johns for driving me around, I really appreciate it.

Some of my highlights:

1) the stick and knife fight between Pappy Dog and Red Dog
2) The little in between spaces over the weekend, talking to people, Red Dog giving a short intro to his German sword fighting style
3) watching people consult, strategize, or learn a quick technique before a fight and then pulling it off
4) the fights! good stuff...

porn*
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Scurvy Dog
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« Reply #21 on: April 08, 2008, 11:10:49 PM »

My thoughts on this weekends Gathering:

The Tribe:
Much thanks to all involved in putting this on including Guru Crafty, Pretty Kitty, The Night Owl and his crew, the musicians, the guys whose names I forget but who helped us from hurting ourselves terribly on the “environment”, the cooks (Dog Randall, C-“What’s My Name?” Bitch and Dogzilla), the “bartenders” (Lonely, Red and Scotty w/ special guest KNOB Creek) and last but not least all the fighters themselves. It was an awesome thing to hang with such a great group of people sharing laughs, thoughts, philosophy, good conversation, food and spirits and of course… pain. (Thankfully no suffering though!)


Memorable Moments:
Porn Star and Lonely’s opening fight which scared the crap outa me.
The expressions on our faces when we first viewed the secret fighting location for days two and three.  shocked
Pappy and Red Dog’s awesome stick and knife fight. Man that rocked!
Kahuna Dog and his fighting laugh. (We should call you Hyena Dog or maybe Hawaiieena Dog)
C-Tahiti Dog’s stick work… smooth like butta baby
Sleddog showing me the ropes on our Sunday morning “warmup” fight. Owwww… it was fun, but owwwww…
Lonely’s lesson on how to escape chokes



Special Thanks:
The NoHo crew for reminding me to breath and move. (Two things I somehow forget to do on my own).
Poidog for helping me push into the third day after my shoulder said NO.
C-Scotty Dog and his upbeat spirit even in the face of adversity. You’re the man and I still owe you a fight!
Dog Kase for not getting mad after the .38 incident. (But it was funny, you gotta admit)
C-“I Need a Name” Bitch for being cool as ever. You need a name though… seriously.
Dog Dean for the awesome demonstration
All the guys who fought me and let me live to tell the tale. Arrrrrrr…
To the pack for making Mrs. Scurvy feel right at home
To anyone I’m forgetting to thank!


As far as stick hickey photos, I’d post mine but considering where Lonely Dog hit me it’s best I don’t.  wink Doh!

Arrrr,
Scurvy


"We are the Knights of the Round Stable!"
Sleddog
« Last Edit: April 08, 2008, 11:13:06 PM by Scurvy Dog » Logged
Red Dog
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« Reply #22 on: April 13, 2008, 07:39:51 PM »

Well guys, here's my poetry. Aside from all the deep stuff I want to let y'all know that I had the best time of my life. Man, there were so many good fighters. So much inspiration. You guys are top!  Grin

Thanks to Dogzilla for feeding the pack!  cheesy

I dedicate this little writing of mine to all who were there, whether they were fighters, bystanders, musicians, camera folks or directors.  Wink

Guro Crafty, thanks for taking me under your mighty wings!  Cool


----------------------------------------

A Corral In My Soul

It has been a week now that I left the gates of the corral at Ganson's Place in Temecula. Those of us who have been there will remember forever when I mention this place.

Pictures flash in my mind, fleeting memories. Of sunny days in the park. Of dust. Of the settling sun. Of the fighters, gathered in the circle.
The sounds cling in my ear. Of buzzing sticks, powershots amissed. Dry cracks of sticks squaring off. The baritone unspectular of a good shot landing on bone or flesh. The yells, the moaning and grunting, the laughter. And the drums of life.
Even the smells are still there. Fresh grass, brown rich earth. Old weeds and rotten old horse. The plowed and trampled ancient red soil of the west.

And that feeling.

The first day in The Park was like a celebration. Like a get together to get to know each other. Let there be no doubt - the fighting was hard, we saw feats of highest warriorship. A reminiscence of days gone by since the tribe gathered here for the first time 20 years ago. A tribute for those who paved the way. Some of us shed blood for them.  A day in its own, out in the open field, on the grass and in the sun.

Then the corral. Each of us took to the task of preparing the ritual ground. Plowing and digging, loosening the hard baked arid land. We all were there, we all did our share.

The fighting was the best I ever saw. The fighting the day before has put us in a state in which we were no longer inhibited by our fears and doubts. We went out there to fight as if there is nothing else for us to do.

That was when I realized, my path into the corral began much earlier. When? I do not know. Maybe when I met my teacher Lonely Dog eight years ago?  Or when that book about the Tao Of The Jeet Kune Do by Bruce Lee fell into my hands 12 years before? Perhaps when my father taught me the basics of fencing when I was at the tender age of eight? Maybe even earlier than that?

It does not matter. Only there in the corral I realized that I have been preparing for this all my life. Here I was, there I stood. On that day. When everything came together and time space were justly aligned for me.

Every little act beared symbolism. My return to America after I spent so much important time there when I was a teenager. A consolidation with a part of me that always felt American and was drawn to return to this great country. Meeting with my teacher, friend and now brother Lonely Dog who was the first I ever fought with the stick and who showed me my weaknesses in the very early days by defeating me. But also drawing me into the Tao of the Dog Brother without ever being demanding. The time I spent with Marc and his wonderful family where I was able to replenish and prepare for the turbulent days ahead. The teachings Guro put into my mind and my heart. His way of leading by example.

Then arriving at Ganson's Place. Picking up the axe and hoeing the soil while the sun was setting on the horizon. It put me back into the days when the first pioneers - people who left torn Europe in hope to provide their children a brighter future far from home - arrived to earn their meager living by cultivating the lands of the west.
But also to those times when the Indians celebrated their warriorship in conjunction with mother earth. What a symbol to have two white horses to watch our efforts.

Over our heads soared two ravens. Those who are familiar with Norse mythology will know that mighty god Odin used two ravens to watch over the lands for him. I remembered my journey to Norway where I practiced swordsmanship on a holy island of the Vikings, an island where their kings and warriors were buried. This moment became also present for me, there, far away from the lands of my ancestors, far away in the west - at the shore of our civilization.

The fighters came from all so different walks of life. Each one was carried to this place by another path, another way, another Tao. Some came there just for the fight, some to put themselves on the test, some even just for fun. Whatever intention, whatever history behind each man - he found his place in the corral.

I realized that my path is a spiritual and philosophically one.

There came this one moment in time. I fought on Friday. I fought on Saturday. Those two days were the highlight of my entire martial art. Then on Sunday I decided it would not be time to fight but take a step back to watch from a distance. And what I saw was sheer beauty - and art - violence - and courage - dedication - and passion - and love - compassion - but also pain, taken - stamina - and spirit - fortitude - brotherhood - and faith.

So later that evening I found myself alone looking out into the distant horizon, seeing all this. Everything I was fell apart - and was put together anew. Past, present and future merged and became one. The corral was burned into my soul. I became the Red Dog.

What is it like to live on the day after? What is it like to move from here on? I do not know.

One thing is for sure. The adventure continues. It will. There will be other adventures. New ones, maybe different ones, plenty of them. Whatever happens, whatever awaits us  in those tides of the world, we can be sure of one thing. There is a place of power within us now.  A place we can access. If we allow ourselves. We can carry it out of the ritual into the real world.

Reality - when the duties of everday life catch up with us - can be a dull place without magic, without myth, without love, without glory.

But I do not worry anymore. There is a family in my heart. And a corral in my soul. I will spark a light where there is darkness.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #23 on: April 14, 2008, 10:34:14 PM »

Brought over from the DBMA Association forum to post for someone who is not registered on the public forum:

Woof ,  Finally back home and thought I would share my most memorable moments from the 3 days.  Seeing Dogzilla ascend to the Council of Elders (watching him fight was also a revelation), the Espada y Daga fight between Red Dog and Pappy Dog was a thing of beauty and to the uninitiated would have appeared almost choreographed.  Having Sled Dog run a clinic on me (the Illustrisimo cross step would have helped if only my brain didn't lockup).  Poi Dog (Semper Fi Bro) tough as coffin nails and side splitting funny.  Guide Dog who in addition to being an intelligent articulate individual, for me wins the Ironman award (I think he fought everyone who showed up!!!).  Dog Pound who in addition to being a great fighter and a beast of strength was kind enough(one on one) to share his prayer goals for the weekend and allow me to share in the higher purpose of the Gathering.  Dog Kase (Lightbulbs?  Don't judge me) who in addition to his honesty and warrior spirit cracked me up every morning.  Speaking in movie dialog with Pappy Dog (who was very kind to me, hooked me up with a tent and coffee,  a big thanks to Linda also!) Getting the run down on gang mentality from Sheep Dog.  Having Dog Matt smash my face with his head and having Tahiti Dog crack me at will (watch this guy he is scary good).  Watching Lonely Dog fight, to me the ideal of beauty and brutality.  So many others that I'll have to write down and organize properly.  Between the fights and the camaraderie it just made me glow(still does).  Even though I have a long long way to go, being the lowest in the company of great men is good and right.  The final image for me is Crafty Dog speaking softly (his voice most likely hoarse from yelling "relax and move white man") in the coral, closing the Gathering.  It brought to mind what the composer Stravinsky said about Segovia;  "his voice is not loud but is heard a long way away".  Thank you to all who participated and fought and welcomed me as one of their own,  I am humbled by your generosity and honored by your company.  Dog Randall 
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #24 on: April 19, 2008, 08:42:04 PM »

Brought over from the DBMA Association Forum:
===============================================

My name is Imogen ( yes as in Imogen Heap) and I was at the three day gathering as a guest along with Matt Tucker ( time keeper) and my two boys,Jordan and Taylor who both had a ball....Jordan infact discovered a flair for photography during this time.....
I wanted to just let you all know my thoughts from an outsiders point of view.

When we arrived it was for me with slight trepidation, almost an intrusion to something I had only seen on DVD or glancing out the window at Matt in the garden, these feelings quickly dispersed as everyone was so welcoming and I soon had my eye on who I thought were the ones to watch.
My main priority was to keep my children occupied so they didn't disturb the focus but I still took it all in and it was very exciting to be part of the journey that took place at the ranch, there was a buzz all round as the corral was prepared for the days ahead ,I am sure everyone was thinking the same thing, what a wonderful opportunity this was and to make the most of it.
I cannot say that I know much about Dog Brothers but what I discovered was they are led by a unique man who had an amazing aura about him and that all the men were like minded, focused and disciplined which I can relate to very easily, as a trained dancer these traits are in me always and hopefully passed onto my children. Because of my background  and lack of knowledge I looked at the fighters and chose my favourites because of who I thought had the "X Factor"( charisma) but I also found it hard to watch Ben or Scotty Dog  get hurt as I had been to dinner with both of them!!!
I watched my husband in that corral timing the rounds and he looked like a little boy in his element almost skipping around...Some of you may know that he had a nasty accident a few years ago and nearly lost his hand which was devastating and then to see him involved in the gathering made me so proud.

After the three days were over and we  moved on with our holiday the experience still stayed with us and I realised it was something that none of us will ever forget. I have just read Red Dogs poem which actually made me cry, it probably woudn't have done had I not been there........but I was. As I said at the beginning I went to the gathering with trepedation but  came away from it refreshed
and with a spring in my step and a utmost respect for your art
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