Forum Sahabat Silat

English Version => Pencak Silat Schools and Teachers => Topic started by: Antara on 17/06/2009 08:41

Title: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 17/06/2009 08:41
Don’t take this as professional account about the style, I only joined with the Seliwa for about three months now, so I wouldn’t dare to claim any presentable knowledge about this unique style. And if any of you thought that I am saying this out of humility as many Indonesians would intuitively do, please ask people who know me about how humble I was.

They would definitely ask if you were talking about the same person ::).

I am caught by cold and have legal reason to leave work for a day… obeying medical advice to stay on bed, I took my laptop to bed and type in several things to unload whatever lurking in my mind. This is one of them (doctor actually asked me to do nothing but sleeping, hence you may consider this as masterpiece of my sleepwalking, or better, sleeptyping :w).
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 17/06/2009 08:43
Everything I write here are based on my own interpretation of what is being taught, or told during practice by various people. Other people may have different interpretation, or even learn different naming or categorization. I believe you are well aware that in traditional school, we don’t do much standardization. :-X

I intent to make this a life account of my Seliwa study. There could be corrections, omission, and update along the way. People use to do such thing in Blog… but due to my limitation (all right, I can be humble too sometime :-P), allow me to put it here (somebody say about this forum being stagnant?). Of course, I highly appreciate input from other Seliwa members.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 17/06/2009 08:45
The first thing I learn about Seliwa, is that it is very much like what Don F. Draeger wrote in his book about silat, you don’t do warm-ups. Get onto the field and do the jurus (form) immediately. According to Draeger, silat practitioners assume that fight could occur anytime and anywhere, there won’t be any time to do warm up or stretching, so always be prepared.

However, in case of Seliwa, I think the reason is more practical; nobody in Betawi ever invented warm-up. :w
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 17/06/2009 08:47
My observation after three months, the forms in Seliwa can be divided into three categories. The first one called “Pu’un”, that is Betawi dialect for “Pohon”, or tree. Forms that fall into this category are relatively simple and direct, aimed to introduce new practitioner into reality of combat at its simplest model. Hence the naming –I believe- signify the process to grow knowledge, or develop a strong foundation. More about this later.

The second categories, if I am not mistaken (haven’t got there, I am still struggling with my stubborn tiny trees >:() called “kembang”, or flower. However, unlike the consensus in most silat styles, kembang here doesn’t refer to flowery movements that only good for show but useless in combat, in contrary, kembang in seliwa symbolize the stage where students learn variations and explore larger possibility in realistic fight. When the tree grows big enough, the flower bloom.

The third categories called buah, or fruit. It doesn’t take a genius to see the pattern, a tree grows, generate flowers, and then produce fruits. Unfortunately I haven’t reached that far to be able to make educated interpretation. My assumption, this is the stage where students learn the distilled hence deadly products of the previous stage, judging from the form played by my seniors.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 17/06/2009 08:50
The Pu’un,

There are six pu’un altogether, from the simplest grab-and-strike of the first pu’un, to the not-too-simple dance-like-scooping motion of the sixth pu’un. All pu’uns employ large and strong hip turning, creating upper torso waving movement typical to Betawi silat (at least to my observation). One can quickly recognize that in this stage students learn how to absorb and deliver power using hip movements.

In Pu’un students also learn rapid muscle controls, that is contracting muscles for maximum impact and relaxing them immediately. This skill will be very useful in close combat where tactile sensitivity and speed play important role, together with strong penetrating force. This is done by combining rapid striking with tapping movements in such a way that students are forced to contract and relax their muscles successively.

Something worth written here about pu’un, is the upper torso waving movement that –at first- I thought to be overly-applied. In my first weeks, I was wondering if I have been doing it right since the waving (we called “goyang”, what is it in English?) are too large to fit into close quarter combat. Some of the other students already doing the more linear form, apparently arriving into the same conclusion. However, since my master, Bang Husin, always do the large wave version, I obediently follow. It feels more suitable to my artistic taste, anyway.

Only later after I was allowed to practice with golok, I realized that the waves help in maneuvering edged weapon, more than the rigid linear version. I should have remembered that like many other silat styles, Seliwa was developed around the use of edged weapon.

Oh, did I mention that pu’uns (and likely, all Seliwa form) are performed while holding your breath? Simple but effective way to simulate the tension of real fight. However, I wonder if it has adverse effect of shortening our stamina, being anaerobic exercise? I haven’t got the answer now, but for time being, I balance it by doing aerobic.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 17/06/2009 08:51
I am now learning the first form of “kembang”. It is empty handed, like the pu’uns, but has the golok version. Very exciting, my first weapon lesson.

I’ll write more the next time I am caught by cold. Isn’t it nice to know that world does survive without you taking phone-call or reading e-mails, and you do what you really want to do? :w
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Dodol Buluk on 17/06/2009 09:34
Uda Antara, Do you mind  if I call with Silat Seliwa Contemporer?? because there're a several technics definitely absorbed from another style or  i'm definitely quite wrong with my assumption.

Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: May Lee on 17/06/2009 12:43
Very interesting topic,

Besought permit to learn, and order seat at hall corner while writing at schoolbook..

Warm regard,

May Lee
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: santri kinasih on 17/06/2009 16:23
Uda Antara, Do you mind  if I call with Silat Seliwa Contemporer?? because there're a several technics definitely absorbed from another style or  i'm definitely quite wrong with my assumption.


Contemporary Style of Seliwa?

It could have been true...One thing that needs to be considered: in traditional silat, one is called a master once he has invented a new teaching method or  technique (jurus) based on the basic principle or philosophy of the Style (aliran).

Bang Husin, surely, has innovated a lot of things from the original form of seliwa, including teaching method, yet the basic principle and philosophy have not changed. Bang Husin's father, Husni Embot, had studied 4 different styles before returning to golok seliwa. Bang Husin, in the middle of his study, was forced by his father to master the art of silat cingkrik. Bang Husin had been also intrigued to learn silat from banten, rawa belong, and karate, before he concluded his study of golok seliwa from his father.

Techniques (jurus) and teaching method may have evolved a lot, yet the spirit, which is the basic principle and philosophy, remains the same.

Despite all, I am still considering to encourage bang husin to open class that only teaches applications of techniques (buah) without bothering the basic principle of jurus pu'un and kembang...Just a thought from the world that always looks for instant results! :)
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 18/06/2009 10:16
Uh, Bang Husin studied Karate too? Is that how we got the first and second Pu’un?

@Bang Mboel,
I’d rather use the word “hybrid” instead of “contemporary”. Yet, to my pathetic knowledge about silat, almost all Betawi styles are mixed of, combined, or influenced by other styles, which is understandable if we consider Betawi was (and still?) an important trading port that many cultures meet and blended.

@Uda SK,
As for me, I’d ask Bang Husin to slow down a bit... there are too many applications than my old bones could swallow. :'(
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Dodol Buluk on 18/06/2009 10:28
indeed...i'll discuss it further with Mas MJ14..hehehe

Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 18/06/2009 11:55
Appreciate if you could bring the discussion here, Bang Mboel... [top] The last time Kang MJ and I had practice session together he didn't talk much, just throwing knife around and cutting other people's hair with golok :P Now I know why many students wear kopiah during practice. ;D

We may open "Seliwa" barber shop one day... [lucu]
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 18/06/2009 12:29
I have several things about pu’un in mind, but lets keep it for my future writing. Currently I have other thing burning in my mind. The Seliwa Grip...

Say, what is the first thing a blade master would tell his/her student about handling an edged weapon? Naturally it would be: “Get a good grip”. That’s what Guru Glenn told me in knife fighting seminar last year. Well, actually what he did was hitting my wrist over and over again until I can keep my knife from falling. He said nothing at the time but the lesson was crystal clear (also the bruises :-X).

In Seliwa, however, we are required to switch from tight to loose grip or vice versa as demanded by circumstances. Seliwa’s fighting strategy is so unique that we have to switch among various grips, e.g. standard grip to ice-pick, move the golok from right hand to left hand, turning it in such a way that it would re-appear from unexpected angle, and many other deadly tricks. While you have to have a good grip when your golok meet its target, you need to have flexible wrist and loose grip for maneuvering. Some grips cannot even be called grip since you only use your index and thumb finger to hold your golok. Bang Husin once showed me how he could godot (now, what is it in English again?) my arm using a flexible grip. A close combat using golok...

Long way to mastery, I could see, yet, it is fun to learn...

Anybody know what is godot in english? It is more than simply cutting... ~X( such a rich language that the Betawi people have  :-*
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 22/06/2009 12:55
This is not field report of the workshop, again, simply my account of the event.

The first session was quite enlightening even for me, an insider. The material was presented by Uda SK on behalf of Bang Husin, explaining numbers from one to seven, reciting the meaning of each number from Islamic perspective, and the importance of each number in Seliwa practice. My helplessly pragmatic brain saw it as effective mnemonic to remember the basic of Seliwa’s fighting principles.

Confused? Here is an illustration.
Take number seven for example, Islam believes in seven days of creation, seven level of the skies, seven days a week, and other seven I might missed from the explanation (understand that in Arabian culture, seven represents infinity, just as we use ‘a thousand and one’). For Seliwa, seven represents the number of steps in any of Jurus Pu’un. I imagine that when Islam was dominating all aspect of life in old time Betawi, such numbering can be absorbed easily by students because it has direct relationship with their belief in daily life.

In the next session, Uda SK demonstrate the first Jurus Pu’un, the most basic and simple jurus in Seliwa. Frankly, I was expecting that he would demonstrate something fancier, but later I was glad that he didn’t.

Uda SK explained the jurus with interesting story-line to remember its principle. For example, he used the notion “if you go out, don’t take all the rice from your granary, leave them for those at home.” It means, leave most of your weight at your back leg when you move forward... “travel lightly so you can fill your vehicle later” ... so your front element can react quickly to opponent reaction ... “and return home with something for your family” ... grab your opponent toward you and finish him off.

Such an interesting way to remember principles. [top]

Uda SK then demonstrate application of those principles with his long life partner, Kang Mas MJ14... so realistic that I think they might need to settle something off-line later. x-))

Kang Mas MJ14 also had his own session with his favorite weapon, knife. He explained Seliwa principles applied in knife fighting. I wonder if I ever wanted to be involved in knife fighting in such close distance as showed there, but that’s part of Seliwa’s life, bladed weapon in close combat. In this session, Kang Mas MJ14 invited Kang Abu Zakka in demonstration. I am sure there were scratches and bruises there, and they might want to settle things out afterward too. ::)

This is just simple notes from me. Please feel free to add anything.
I am now in good health, some people don’t want to let me enjoy my life for long time. ???
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 22/06/2009 13:01
Oh... after workshop we had interesting discussion about inventing "motto" for Seliwa... a jargon that represent the school, just like "lanjutkan" or "lebih cepat lebih baik"...

... and the proposal were "loe duluan deh" and "ops... sorry"... [lucu]

... I know we still have long way to go  ???
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: crashed brain on 09/07/2009 16:40
I am really sure Bang Husin, Kang MJ and uda SK have developed the philosophy of Seliwa further after my departure to Germany..Glad somebody has explained it here..

Antara has explained it very well the basic philosophy of Seliwa, what the connection among the Jurus' are, and what Seliwa requires to its disciples. In other thread of Seliwa Workshop somebody has also pointed the global framework of the usage of weaponry such as blade (golok), knife and a empty hand fight of seliwa.

Personally, I am more interested to learn the empty hand fight of Seliwa. We will not bring weapons all the time, right? Not trying to be so arrogant about it, but weapons in Seliwa is only a prolongation of hand.. nothing more nothing less..

About the absorption of outside style including karate, I thought bang Husin has made it very well to blend other techniques into Seliwa. They enriched Seliwa and bring it to another level. You can see outside influence yet you can not claim the technique is not Seliwa original. It blended very smoothly I may say. Bang Husin allows me freely to learn other syles. It will only develop further the disciple, for example the understanding of techniques and its application. He even took me to other Gurus... lol

While I admire Seliwa for its rich philosophy and techniques, Antara and I had a long discussion about Silat in other forum. It brought me one conclusion, there is no style bests another.. 
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: crashed brain on 09/07/2009 20:54
After reading my post again, I felt I must explain a little bit more about the absorption of other technique into Seliwa.

Please bear in mind that I differentiate Jurus and technique..

If you see the jurus, it is Seliwa original.. Bang Husin may or may not add other style's jurus, but it is original.. He modified the jurus he got from his father only a little.

But the techniques and its applications are a blend mixture of what Bang Husin has got from his journey in silat practice. We can see many techniques originated from Cingkrik, Serak, Cikalong, Cimande and many other style blend into one mixture of Seliwa style. And if you are trained by his disciples like kang MJ and Santri Kinasih, you will have yet another form of mixture as such ... lol-
Those two honorable men are silat master even before learning Seliwa from Bang Husin...  [top]

And when Antara joined the band.. I am sure Seliwa will grow exceptionally bigger.. x-))
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Taufan on 10/07/2009 13:40
Amiieen... keep it up guys  [top]
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 10/07/2009 15:29
The last sentence of Bang Brain... you just need to change the tone, and it would have different meaning entirely... :-P

To my unverified knowledge, Uda SK and Kang MJ became Bang Husin disciples after they performed the typical initiation ritual .... a fight between capable fighters .... It is very much like the old days when the defeated (providing they survived) learn from the victor. So it is real deal with the three... I leave the detail to Bang Brain to tell (or Uda SK and Kang MJ themselves). It is a very interesting story.

As for me, I started Seliwa because it matches the only time slot my wife would permit me to leave home  x-)) ... so it is completely different story between me and the two seniors.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 10/07/2009 15:33
Talking about Seliwa being hybrid style, I believe that disciples are not learning just the style, they actually trying to absorb the master’s knowledge and experience. Two masters of the same style could have different wisdom to share, as much as two disciples that learn from the same master could end up as different kind of accomplished master themselves. Hence, while teaching exactly the same movements he learns from his father, Bang Husin bears with him his own knowledge, experience, interpretation and conclusion...

I am writing this journal to record exactly that, insight I get while learning Seliwa... and have been fortunate that Uda SK and Bang Brain are willing to share their insights too.

Still drafting about Pu’un... hopefully I can post it here soon.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: crashed brain on 10/07/2009 20:03
They, I mean MJ and SK, became the disciples of Bang Husin not because a real fight...
It was after Bang Husin showed them the fascinating Seliwa style. They knew Bang Husin long before, but bang Husin always kept Seliwa a secret... hehehe...

what made them wowed and became the disciples are their secret... and you'll know it when you finished the lesson.  :w
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 10/07/2009 21:25
Ssstttt.... Bang Brain... you're ruining the plot... >:(

Hundred years from now people won't know the real story... only the good one :P, that's how legends were born... x-))
don't you see Seliwa's history is too plain, short and honest??  :D
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 12/07/2009 11:13

When talking about jurus, I used to imagine various movements arranged into a long form… the more ‘what-if’ scenario planted into particular jurus, the longer it will become. Seliwa takes different approach with its pu’un. In pu’un you can only find one to three movements repeated seven times. Well, it depends on how you count movements, of course. I count one for any movement(s) that can end a fight, so a block followed with a punch count as one. If we consider those fight-ending movements as segment, a typical segment in pu’un takes only three to five seconds to perform… hence the longest pu’un is only thirty five seconds long.

I learned the first three pu’uns in just one day, not because I am genius (though I would love to call myself so :P) but because they are so simple... at least on the surface.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 12/07/2009 11:20
First pu’un

In first pu’un, the core movements consist of grab followed by straight punch to mid section. Simple as it may seems, but the teaching behind it is quite demanding. Firstly, though the movement utilizes stepping forward to deliver committed punch, most of the weight must remain in rear leg. Secondly, the punching arm must immediately be relaxed after reaching impact, thus regain sensitivity and ready to anticipate anything. The relaxed arm combined with nearly weightless forward leg will enable us to react quickly, a state commonly called ‘kosong’ (empty) in silat.

People watching Seliwa practice may imitate the movement of first pu’un easily, but without knowing the concept underlying it, they would only learn three repetitive punches.

Second pu’un
I only learn the principle of first pu’un after several weeks, and still struggling to decode the second pu’un. It is straight punch to the head, followed by two punches to mid section. I wonder if there is something more in this other than a common trick to strike at different point? Time will tell… or preferably either Bang Husin or my seniors will  :P
(All right, all right… I should count my own thoroughness too… [pant])
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 12/07/2009 11:32
Third pu’un

If the first two pu’un may looks like Shotokan Karate to me, this third pu’un is a great welcome to Betawi flavor. Punch is delivered palm up instead of down, supporting arm close to elbow of the punching arm instead of withdrawn to the side of body, and upper torso sways with the technique instead of rigid erected spine of the first two pu’un. Finally I can hear ‘Ini dia si Jali-jali’ ringing inside my ears.

To my observation, third pu’un is the opposite of first pu’un. If relaxation in first pu’un enable us to anticipate anything coming from attacking side of our body (you extend your right arm forward, someone push it to your left), the third pu’un react to anything coming from defending side of our body (your right arm forward, someone try to reach your left ribs), or linear strike to your solar plexus.

This pu’un also incorporate footwork unseen in the jurus. I cannot tell how, but when practicing this pu’un with partner, I always intuitively include evading footwork, of which Bang Husin agrees. I wonder if the swaying in jurus is a mean to indicate footwork or at least shift in weight? If it is, then it is really a sophisticated invention by our ancestors. Something we could learn unconsciously (and enjoyable too, if you are into dancing).

For the moment, I see second pu’un as vertical work up and down, while first and third pu’un work us horizontally, something coming from left or right side.

Third pu’un also has the same feature as FMA in blocking blade attack. Apparently this is the first blade lesson in Seliwa done empty handedly... or simply that (any old) silat always take bladed weapon into account...
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 12/07/2009 11:39
Fourth pu’un

I consider this pu’un a good brain gym other than its martial value, arm reaches far to opposite side. This is the first pu’un that utilize obvious fighting footwork.

I interpret this pu’un as close quarter combat work. It contains block, grab and tap at elbow distance, combined with silat typical leg tricks such us stepping onto enemy’s feet, engkol (again, what is it in English?), short sweep and low kick to ankle.

So, after you work with your opponent in long distance with the first three pu’un, we now deal with him closely. I can see pattern of teachings here.

Fifth pu’un

The opening is like third pu’un, except that instead of trying to punch or strike opponents weak points as in third pu’un, fifth pu’un deals with arm or finger (ouch!) breaking. Apparently the fight has gone too close that we don’t have enough space to deliver powerful strike, so we play with joints.

An interesting feature for me is that other than memorizing techniques, this pu’un deals very much with anticipating momentum or energy, a tool to train our body sensitivity. I learn this when practicing the buah (fruit) with partner, I was forced to blend with my partner’s momentum in order to execute the technique properly. Remind me of my aikido days. ;D
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 12/07/2009 13:04
Sixth pu’un

What else left in a fight after gone so close that we need another pu’un?

Well, since going down to the ground is not favorable in street fight, breaking apart is an important skill to learn. Sixth pu’un features large footwork and hand sweeping movement to position us at distance with the opponent... of course by doing damage in the process that we don’t need to continue the fight anymore, or at least not from square one. This also works as trick to move to opponent’s blind spot while fighting at close distance.

General comment about Pu'un...

In Seliwa students learn jurus with its applications at the same time, so students wouldn’t do jurus blindly without knowing its fighting purpose or principle. Just like many silat styles, the juruses in Seliwa are so generic that they work very well as mnemonic device for many techniques already learnt, but nearly useless if studied as stand alone subject.

The isi (content) are taught together with the bongkar (counter-application). It may seems impractical at the first time, especially when the isi and bongkar involve completely different movements from those in jurus (I mean, explicitly). However, once I feel comfortable with the juruses (particularly after managed to finish all pu'uns), those isi and bongkar just flow naturally. Apparently, even though the movements are different, but the principles remain the same. Also, an isi could take principle from more than one jurus, so it is important to take all pu'uns as an integrated concept.

Now that I have been starting waving golok around, I found that the pu’uns are also good mnemonic for blade-work. They are indeed the foundation of Seliwa, while the next stage, kembang, works on the details and specifically crafted for blade-work.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Mantrijeron14 on 14/07/2009 12:57
. And if you are trained by his disciples like kang MJ and Santri Kinasih, you will have yet another form of mixture as such ... lol-
Those two honorable men are silat master even before learning Seliwa from Bang Husin... 

Hayaaa.... you are really exaggerating this dab CB!! Me, myself and I agree with mas Ery's quote: Martial arts student forever. Mastery is still beyond my conception.It is the process we like most. I accept the result as a divine decree multiply by my piece of awkward brainwork.  :'( Nurturing the passion is the hardest part dab! For Dimas Antara, I put additional factor: Spouse's permit!!! ;D

Regardless the story of my initial learning (does everybody feel this is closer to legend-building character? [lucu]), I bowed down to Bang Husin mastery for its unique paradigm of the style. Tricky and manipulating. Maen Jujur or simply called committed strikes are well anticipated yet manipulated. When fighting is orchestrated on one's dominant strategy to another.....the probability to finish the game is on hand (we're still talking about Bang Husin skill here... not mine  :-\)

Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 15/07/2009 13:09
People say; when you study blade, prepare to get cut.
Well, I just got the historical moment this morning, my first cut.  [yahoo] [yahoo] [yahoo] [yahoo]




But it is because a sharp spot somewhere on the sheath, not because of the golok. Does it count? ???
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: ulil on 16/07/2009 13:44
jadi kaya "Silat Diary"

seandainya yang lain juga seperti ini, akhir kejadiannya akan luar biasa
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 16/07/2009 20:44
You mean to get cut too, Bang Ulil?

Well... I would advise not to, nothing extraordinary with cutting marks on your skin. They don't attract girls anymore these days  :w
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 16/07/2009 20:47
on Kembang

As I wrote earlier, kembangs are jurus with golok, but to my surprise, they are taught empty handedly.

The first time I learn the first of the kembangs, called ‘langkah’, I didn’t know that it was a weapon-based jurus. I learned it empty handedly and can easily recognize its martial value that way. I know that one could learn weapon movements empty handedly, imagining that he or she is holding weapon on hand. However, it is still weapon training with no martial value when done empty handedly. With kembang it is completely different case. Kembangs are more like an empty handed juruses, which are complete and sufficient as they are, yet –if you wish- you could put golok into play.

Bang Husin watches my movement closely when I do langkah, somehow he is more prudent compared to when I was still doing pu’uns. When he feel satisfied with my ‘langkah’, he taught me the second kembang, called ‘patah’, still empty handed.

It took me three weeks with ‘patah’ until Bang Husin showed me how to do ‘langkah’ and ‘patah’ with golok. I laughed and shook my head in amazement. There is not much to change, only some details with my wrist, and the golok blend smoothly with the movements.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 16/07/2009 20:52
After several weeks, I started to feel comfortable with my ‘langkah’ and ‘patah’, however, Bang Husin then showed me how to do the two kembangs differently. Doing the same movements, Bang Husin barely moves from the place he stands, even that his feet doing all the footwork as exactly dictated by the jurus. The golok moves faster and flows smoothly from one movement to another without pause as we usually do in normal pace, hence covering Bang Husin’s body with its shade.

Uh oh, there is another level to reach... :-X

I’ve been trying to imitate Bang Husin’s performance for the last three weeks... and it deteriorates all my previous accomplishment. Apparently I need to strengthen my langkah and patah even more before I can push them to next level...

Process... love it... or it will leave you behind. ;D
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: santri kinasih on 19/07/2009 00:00
There have been some changes in teaching method of golok seliwa..Contemporary method aims to restructure or to recreate a new "habit" to one's muscular activities..then we provide the philosophy behind each movement...
In the old days was the other way around, the philosophy came first, then the movement..That is the reason why one of beloved friends has had his brain crashed..
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: santri kinasih on 27/09/2009 22:18
I guess the next post from antara will be: my days with golok seliwa are being postponed until further notice..:)
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 28/09/2009 17:50

Ngelesdotcom ;D
It's been said that in path of mastery, one will experience improvement for sometime, then a little regress, followed by long plateu... only the diligent will manage to overcome the plateu by constant training, which he will arrive in another stage of improvement, regress and plateu again at next level.

Well... I just being diligent with my plateu... ngeleeeessss... :P

But truly, I've been practicing pu'un for sometime after I had to leave golok due to wrist injury... and found that the fourth pu'un is exactly the same with second jurus in Cingkrik Goning. The movement is different of course, but the principal is the same.

Isn't it interesting how you find new perspective within your old stuff by expanding your horizon? No wonder Bang Husin was told to learn other style before returning to Seliwa.

... until further notice then... pembantu and mertua are still mudik... :o me is playing good house-husband  :-[
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 28/09/2009 21:49
Oh… maybe worth written here…

As some of you might have noticed, I joined combative seminar held by SDI about a month a go. It was Krav Maga based training, hence focused on survival in realistic situation.

One important point taken, only gross motor skill works under stressful condition (there are table of heart beat range, but I prefer to take the message the easy way, the faster the heart beats, the clumsier you are). We all know that already, yes, but the drills were excellent to simulate the stressful combat condition (and tiring too :-X).

Working with my pu’un afterward, I realized that those juruses are aligned with battle stress principle I learned in the Seminar.

Apparently this Seliwa was created and furnished by people who’ve been there.

Ouch… my wrist hurt even while typing >:(. Need to find ergonomic keyboard.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Mantrijeron14 on 30/09/2009 09:34
Just want to share mine... I guess and understand that uda Antara is a humble and generous person, no need to ask for formal permission prior to this....  :-P

mental block,

Initially there's no difficulty for me and my other Seliwa peers on transferring the techniques to real golok. Same grip, same movement, same techniques with only one nasty addition :the sharp blade! as keen as razor  :'(. Days went  without any incidents noted, until one day... I experienced myself. During the jurus practice using the golok in formation with other seliwa disciples, my peer hold the forward move instantly right before my eyes. My legs could accomodate such change but my grip did not! Here it goes, the golok slide down nicely between my thumb and index, left a small wound on it.... bang Husin found a banana stem arround and wrap the wound with it. Well... I guess there won't be any prescriptions similar to it but amazingly it worked!

The second incident when my other seliwa fellow had experienced the major cut during his home exercise and had to be treated to hospital for operation.

These hit my confidence hard! I took off my golok and lock em' up in my box. I still play the technique with a dummy. Although the the same contenment obtained, the aura was never be the same. I have enlighted when having a value discussion with my Seliwa colleagues, I regained my confidence back! In seliwa, which ornamented with bladed weapons, an edged weapon unavoidably played!

Someday, sometime everybody who learn the edged weaponry should hold the real bladed weapon. We just need to add more respect on its sharpness and how to manage the safety during exercise and train smart - hard altogether.

Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 30/09/2009 14:30
I am expecting such valuable input from everybody who’s been there. Thank you KaMas MJ. As I mentioned earlier, though the title is about “my days”, but I am expecting contribution from anybody.

I forced myself to use real life golok two months a go (until I hurt my wrist about a month later) and yes, the mental block is real and I still cannot overcome it. I tried affirmation and some NLP tricks, but apparently it is not easy. Conquering fear of ghost is easier than this... maybe because those ghosts are actually afraid of me. :-P

Now I wear leather gloves and forearm protector when practicing with real golok, but my confidence simply dropped anytime I practice with protectors off.

Now I can appreciate that in my aikido days we were asked to bow to our practice sword before take it off the rack, or some people put their golok on their forehead (or even kiss it) before putting it on their waist.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: HartCone on 30/09/2009 18:42
Oh!! it's exciting n realy nice thread, looks like the Martial Arts journal, so many things can be learned from Kang Antara steps to find lots of new things and knowledge, the other is to lead the reader to see the development of the Martial Arts journey from the begining to the next hi level, hopefully this thread could be always continue, I'll really like to see more....  [top]

Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: kalamangga on 30/09/2009 22:22
Honored Masters,

I've been following this thread for some time and Imust say that I fully understand and empathize with Master Antara on the matter of "live" blade training.
If I may be so bold as to share my own "live" blade training experiences, perchance some benefit may come of it.
Some years ago, I trained in the Togakure-Ryu style of Ninjutsu. Specifically in the Jutsu forms of its bladed weapons. My personal favourites are the Katana, Ninja-To and Tanto. From the onset of training, my master insisted on using "live" blades; and that is where the root of all sorrow -or rather- cuts, began.
There were eight of us in my group and since one had to use the thumb and index finger to "feel" the blade when drawing and sheathing, cuts on these digits were inevitable.
All seven in the group suffered numerous cuts, with some even requiring stiches. Our master insisted that this was a necessary phase in the development of respect for the blade.
I was the exception. No cuts, no sutures, no injuries.
This is how I did it:

I cheated.

You see, I've always believed in the philosophy of the late great Raden Panji Dirdjoatmodjo, founder of Perisai Diri.
In 1974, he told me that he developed Perisai Diri so that the multitude can study martial arts safely without injuries.
So his system is based on the premise that one can study martial arts safely always.

So, I stuck a little strip of clear cellophane on the edge of my Katana and Nin-To so that I can feel the blade as it was drawn or sheathed without cutting myself. I chose clear cellophane so that my master would not notice, or else the punishment would have been severe indeed.
By the time I had to take the examination for the instructor level, I was skilled enough to draw and sheathe my blade blindfolded...all the while still cheating.
After about two years of training, I was confident enough to take the cellophane off and practised "live".
To this day (knock on wood), my thumb and index finger are still unscathed.

Currently, my son is studying golok with Kang Awang of GGBD.
Kang Awang also insists on practising "live". Fortunately, he is also very open to new ideas and accepts the concept of "latihan tanpa cedera".
So, my son sticks clear cellophane on the edge of his golok during practise too.

Master Antara, the moral of this story is: Don't be afraid to "cheat" a bit.
By sticking clear cellophane on your golok's edge, you will still maintain the balance, weight and feel of a "live" golok; without the danger.
And you can continue practising to build your confidence to the day when you will finally be truly comfortable wth your "live" golok - without injuring yourself in the process.

Many thanks for allowing me to put my two cent's worth.

Tabik, O Honored Masters. 
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Mantrijeron14 on 01/10/2009 09:29
Cellophane tape!!! Exactly the same with the one we have already adopted!!
Such idea brought by my fellow who have his brain crashed thinking of live blade. Thank God we don't have to cheat to use it as bridging point to mastering the real blade, Bang Husin.. of course with his unique grimming line, gave the permission to do so.

Using such method allow us to swing, shake, chop the real blade without worrying the cut. The more we practice, the bigger confidence gained, and the time will tell us when we have to peel out such little friend who help much. Not all the inferior-looked things could be valued as it seemed. But again.... when the cellophane had been peelled out we are facing the live blade that could hurt. It is .. again the test of  how your exercise bubbling your mental preparedness on using the sharp weapon. Normally, it will feel much more comfortable by holding the same weight, same handle, same everything, yup... we are using the same golok not even change it! The fear grows slowly when we perform the particular technique in the real speed, knowing that when it slipped, a serious injuries awaiting ahead. You just have to deal with this, if you have been accompanied by your sticky friend (cellophane tape :) ) we have to believe with the result of training and then...... dadaaaa....

Thank to master kalamangga.. (but don't call me master, even "mister" is too bold for me :) ) who brings this idea up. It is a reminder for us to practice safely.

Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 01/10/2009 15:56
Thank you, KangMas Kalamangga, exactly what I expect from this thread. Sharing. Please don’t be discouraged knowing that we have applied your idea for sometime, anyway, it is the spirit of friendship and sharing that bond us together as brothers and sisters in martial art [top]. As mentioned by KangMas MJ, it is a good reminder. I do appreciate your valuable input and looking forward for your contribution in the future. :)

Just yet, please don’t call me master, I am but a troubadour singing other people’s bold deeds but too afraid to take part in it myself. A weekend warrior, they call me. I even sprained my wrist carrying my newborn baby, imagine that. :'(

I’ve been practicing with real-iron-but-false-edged-golok for sometime, which size and weight is approximately similar to my personal golok (oh, in Seliwa golok is personalized with forearm length, so every student has his/her own sized golok) and have reached some degree of comfort slashing it around. But I can’t help getting nervous when Bang Husin finally gave me a real one, made to my size. Some people call it master’s trust and other called it master’s curse ... I get mixed somewhere in between :-\. I should be able to use it because other than its sharp edge everything else is similar with my old practice golok, but I just couldn’t. Silat is so dynamic with its live hand that sometime it move so close with the golok hand... different with the two handed katana I used to practice in Aikido.

One solid proof that the first thing to be afraid of is our own fear.

I once have a friend offered me temporary ‘ilmu kebal’ so I can practice safely. Well, other than that I am not comfortable with such ‘ilmu’, he completely missed the point. Avoiding injury is an important part of our practice, yes, but getting comfortable with life blade while knowing that it can hurt you, is part of the ultimate goal.

It is interesting how martial art practice has similarity with our life. Sometime you embark into new journey (school, career, marriage, second marr... err.. I mean career change, children, etc.) which create anxiety and you need to gather all your strength and courage to face them.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: santri kinasih on 01/10/2009 17:39

ilmu kebal is not necessarily magic or black magic...You may find this logically acceptable..But to practice it you may have to reprogram your brain and reassemble your elements of fear...:))....

Here's something to remember me by:

Human has 3 general type of fears:

1) fear of rejection:
2) fear of failure:
3) fear of death..

Fear is generated through your knowledge and common sense...Your knowledge and sense are developed through experiences and learnings from various means (teachers, books, media, etc) ....Things that you may not have experienced or taught would not be acceptable by your mind...Thus, these would induce fears...
When a samurai encounters a new enemy, the first thing the must do is to die...Dying means letting go all the things that he has gained, fighting skils, power, wealth, and, most of all, all of his knowledge...Then, he can embrace new things that may come from such encounter..Then, he and the new things would collapse as one...then..he just know things that make sense and things that are impossible...(musashi)
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 01/10/2009 20:00
Good advise Uda SK, thank you.

I am not against ‘ilmu kebal’, even if it is magic. I was very fond of magic in my younger days (not that I am old, mind you :o) that I learnt Yoga, Wicca and Kahuna before I ever heard about tenaga dalam. God knows how I could be exposed to those practices. I am not against ‘ilmu kebal’ at all, it is just I don’t want to learn anything that discount the value and fun of practicing blade with all its risk.

Fear is fun, isn’t it? :-P

The samurai mind-set you mentioned, “Mu” in Japanese, is indeed an ultimate goal of a student of martial art. That’s the turn point where martial art become spiritual practice. Of course we also must consider the background of such thought.

In general, warriors were people that forged civilizations in its earliest stage. Warriors were people who willing to sacrifice their life for higher achievement (either true or indoctrinated, rational or absurd) and welfare of others, hence providing building blocks for society to grow.

Samurai is no exception. Samurai life is heavily influenced by Shinto-Buddhism-Zen philosophy where the sword is not just a tool, but way of life. That serving a master is a path toward perfection, and achieving enlightenment is the ultimate goal even if it means producing nice cut on the other samurai’s neck. As you may aware, religious belief forbade a Samurai to work beyond call of sword. They’d better wandering as beggar-like master-less samurai instead of taking decent job such as farmer or trader. Without such fanatic thought, there won’t be any concept of such immovable mind against dead as you mentioned.

Remind me of heaven-promised jihad for moslem. ;D

In nutshell, such achievement needs deep contemplation about value of life. A long and worthy road to be taken by martial artist (or anybody for that matter).

As for me, I also believe in practicing for fun, not much a warrior to be proud of  :'(.

Still, very good insight there Uda, thank you for sharing.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: santri kinasih on 01/10/2009 23:15
@ Antara...

Silat is was developed through the interaction between mankind and the universe...I guess religions must also be universal...But let's leave religions behind us...
Faith is not created by one's religion.., one's religion is created by his faith..
So is must believe..Such belief may be achieved through a series of equation (the math of faith and belief)..If you believe, than nothing else matters...
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: May Lee on 02/10/2009 16:18
Dear All,

Just wanna ask a permission to sit in the corner and write down a very valuable lesson in my school book..


May Lee
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 02/10/2009 20:34
I am definitely not the right person to talk about religion :-P. It is just I happened to read a book about samurai’s ‘Mu’ (or the complete term ‘Mushin No Shin – state of no mind) and their other life and death concepts. According to the book, those concepts are heavily derived from religion, or at least in case of Musashi, he learnt it from the famous Buddhist Monk Takuan Soho.

Talking about the same concept out of religion term, we may find the word ‘Oceanic feeling’ by Sigmund Freud or ‘Flow’ by Mihaly Csíkszentmihályi'.

Such feeling is now deeply researched in psychology, especially psychology of sport and learning.

I had several experience of such ‘flow state’ several time, and all related to near missed traffic accident. The one I remember the most is when I was riding motorbike in my younger days exploring Lombok country side. I was caught in heavy rain while descending down from Mount Rinjani... the rain was so heavy that the road was too slippery for my brake to work...

It was supposed to be frightening experience.... but somehow I found myself ‘clicking’ into certain mind-state where everything is immaterial. I descended the almost 40 degree sloped road down with high speed, but somehow I found myself able to manouver the bike all the way down safely. It was fifteen minutes of almost out-of-body experience. There was no fear or any other thought, simply sort of oneness with my surrounding. Even joy. Everything looked like slow motion.

Now that I looked back, the closest feeling of such experience that I can remember is when I train my juruses. I suspect that such almost meditative state I experienced in Rinjani was derived from my martial art training with all its psychological aspect.

So when people ask, ‘why bother practicing martial art that you never intend to use?’ my answer would be ‘I used it and it worked well’

... it should work even better practicing with life blade. :-X
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 02/10/2009 20:35
Dear All,

Just wanna ask a permission to sit in the corner and write down a very valuable lesson in my school book..


May Lee

Hallo there Bang May Lee... I hope everything is well for you and your family after the quake?
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: santri kinasih on 02/10/2009 22:15
May lee...another long lost soul of seliwa...:)...
May lee once told me...the essence of martial art is to connect your soul and your body as if they were to love birds that each of which has wings, yet both of them have decided not to fly.....nor to be separated...

My dear May Lee...I summon thee....I summon thy spirit....I beckon thy wisdom...The wisdom you once inspired Caessar:" Cowards died many times before their deaths, valiant never taste it but once"...

Ooo May Lee, My dear May Lee, Let thy wisdom to be heard...Let thy soul to be seen...Once thou emerge, I wish I would be the one who says:" Behold!! Here comes May Lee..."
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 03/10/2009 08:24
... eeuwww... the smoke ... ugh... ugh.... can you use less sulfur anytime you appear yourself in this mortal world Bang MayLee... ? :o

... can I have my three wishes now?  :P (ngarep)
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Pemulung on 04/10/2009 20:19
This thread is so inspiring and bring tonnage of thoughtful. All of you are masters...true masters..and jokers.  x-))

Let me bow my head under my shoulder.  [top].

Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: EricB on 04/10/2009 20:23
@ Pemulung: why does your reaction looks so filled with sarcasm ?

its better to speak out whats bothering you, the members here are old enough to handle some critisism.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Pemulung on 04/10/2009 21:09
Nope sir,

Does it looks sarcasm ?, but it's true, my expression came from exciting feeling after finished this thread.
i really apreciate  because many martial arts thoughts, movement analysis, life philosophy and smart joke came from their quote.

Golok Seliwa Bang Husin is came from traditional teaching, but Mantrijeron, Santrikinasih. Maylee especially bung Antara make this ones so contemporary. Complete with modern and actual term, definition and glossary. They combined verywell.
In my mind, Pencak Silat should be developed like this way of kind.

Sorry for all if it sound hyperb, my vocab and expression make inconvenience. It come from my bottomst heart. Golok seliwa is on the top list that i must learn in the next,

Warm regards.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: EricB on 04/10/2009 23:29
no hard feelings, I was only asking a question

and also thnx for your explanation of how you feel about this subject, I respect that

selamat dan silahkan lanjut debat ini
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Pemulung on 04/10/2009 23:59
 [top] [top] hard feeling...i love you all.. Thank you, you do that you should do bro...

Golok seliwa has potency to socialize to whole world on master antara, mantri jeron, santri kinasih's hands.
Like dan inosanto and steve tarani do with karambit. 

Golok from tiga berantai, Clurit from Jokotole-Pamur, Kerambit from silek minang, keris bali from bakti negara should be socialized intensively and progresively also. We need figure like bung antara, santri kinasih, mantri jeron that can well articulate on modern approach.

lanjuth... :D :D
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: May Lee on 06/10/2009 13:03
Dear All,

My appreciation to Mas Antara for making this interesting 'Seliwa diary' happened. Moreover, as shown from all of his articles, he always brought a powerful library to support his point of view. No wonder one of silat master like Kakangmas MJ14 awarded him as a 'pesilat akademis' which, as far as I know, not so many martial artist able to drill down the martial art technique in such a way.

Hey, where's the GRP button..? I need to press that stuff..!

Alright..once, a 70 years old farmer told me 2 meaningful words:

"Nor a farmer plant a palm-tree without expecting a palm-fruit.."

Surely, that is the way it should be. In this context, doing something for nothing is responsible to your life (wasting time and money of course). After several years nursing the palm-tree, in normal circumstance, it will start to produce palm-fruits.

Now, look at the Betawi people. They're popular & other people respect them with their 'jawara', beside also known as flower-expertise (Rawa Belong known as one of Betawi silat base-camp is a famous market in flower trading up to now). So, it makes sense that the name and philosophy behind the jurus comes naturally from their daily 'flower-jawara' activity. And, it will give an easy capture illustration when we practice this martial art method. It will give us a path what to get when we arrive there...'fruits'!

"There're 'palm-fruits' in the palm-fruit, and there're 'palm-fruits' in the palm-tree.."

My understanding, nowadays, so many products and its derivate could be produced from this palm-fruit and palm-tree. Say, from the fruit we can get Crude, Kernel, Olein, etc. From the tree we can generate Fibre, Carbon, Pulp, Animal Feeding, and so forth.

What inspiring me is in regard with martial art lesson especially after reading jurus pu'un (tree), kembang (flower), buah (fruit). Several questions come to my mind, such as: "Are there any 'fruits' in every single jurus pu'un (tree)?"

In respect with the wisw statement from the'old guy' above, the answer should be: "Yes, there are..!"

Of course next questin soon arise: " Where are they? Are they hiding in the form of 'what you see is not only that what you got'..?

Well, just my couriousity, maybe we should back again from the beginning, one step backward for at least three steps forward, right huh :-)
Let's investigate jurus pu'un (tree), kindly watching step by step of the movement. For example 'melangkah' in that jurus. Or, even we go deeper to look more detail such as the role of foot-sole in 'melangkah' for instance. Which part of foot-sole to use and for what kind of purpose in correlation with optimal result to be given. Look at silat master like Uda SK. Wow..what amazing..!, his 'langkah' is 'invicible', suddenly he already just about 1 inch in front of us..

I myself like scientific approach to explain that phenomenon but unfortunately (what a pity) for me it's a long long way to go to try to uncover those 'secrets'. A question coming, before I got the answer another already queuing, like walking thru the un-ended road.

That is why, a martial artist who practising one simple jurus for many years could be interpreted as not a 'donkey-rider' but might be the talented one because he/she got an enlightment in exploring and un-covering hundreds or even thousands of 'fruits' in that particular jurus. Like a journey, a wanderer who always meet new people in every shelter he stopped by, even he had left that shelter and coming back the other day, he always meet another new people.

OK, it's a happiness to be with all of you here. But again, please allow me at a moment to just sit 'like a baby' in peace of silence at the hall corner. My 'comfort zone' now on is there: hearing you, seeing you...touching you (ups..!)

Warm & big hug,

May Lee
stuck in the middle of dead-line
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: santri kinasih on 06/10/2009 13:30
Look at silat master like Uda SK. Wow..what amazing..!, his 'langkah' is 'invincible', suddenly he already just about 1 inch in front of us..

May Lee
stuck in the middle of dead-line

May Lee my dear,

The only reason why I could be so fast to be near you is dear..You make me want more and more just to be near you....Eventhough I have to puke and "misuh" afterward...:)
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 09/10/2009 10:46

The first of the kembang is called langkah (steps/footwork), a very simple jurus that consist of only three core movements (opening and ending movements are not counted, you can find them in all of Seliwa’s jurus). So as usual, when jurus only contain small collection of movements, I must look at it as principle-learning-tool instead of collection of how-tos.

The two out of three are basically coordination between left and right arm. Left arm doing blocking, sweeping, passing, trapping, catching or whatever, basically clearing space away for right arm to do its part. Then the right arm follows with the finishing action, could be anything from hook, uppercut, joint break or maybe anything else I couldn’t think of (in my case, usually a lot. Silat tricks always surprises me).

Put golok in right arm, then it could be a stab, an upward slash, or a cut to your very own left arm :'(. Bang Husin was really keen watching me doing this jurus until he finally allow me to hold a golok (and it was a dummy... ???).

The third of the three is right arm travelling far to left side, followed by both arms pushing forward, left palm up, then half way forward, the right arm retracted to solar plexus, palm open and down. I am not sure what this movement is for the first time I learn it, but it is fun to do, kind of movement I like ... ‘silat banget’. Later I accidentally learn that it is a good way to practice trapping. I was playing around with a friend when suddenly he found himself immobilized with right elbow pressed to his ribs and my right finger jab stopped at his throat. It just happened. :D

The golok version I learned later is less friendly. Cut everything that comes close, a ‘de-fang-ing-the-snake’ kind of movement. Funnily, while the movement in jurus is simple, but the application flows with many variations, sometime with completely different angles, different facing, or even different movement altogether (!). But once you grab the ‘feel’ of the basic movement, everything else just flow naturally.

So this what they call, learn only one, use it for many (applications).


So why the jurus named ‘langkah’?

Well, just my thought.
Firstly, apparently the footwork here is the base of all the higher juruses. Take for example, the next jurus called Patah, it is exactly the same footwork with additional ‘patah’ (breaking) movement inserted.

The higher the jurus, the more movements were inserted, but the foundation is still the ‘langkah’.

Just like Pu’un, it is the footwork that gives jurus the real flavor, and serves as container of the important principles. Try to do the arm movements without the langkah, and it becomes tasteless, merely a set of movement you can use in fight but that’s all. Include the footwork, body swaying, body leaning and hip movements, your imagination suddenly boosted with possibilities... and the most important part for me, it is fun. :D

I once overheard a young Taekwon-Do practitioner said to her friend that she switched from Silat because it involves too much dancing. Well, I join silat because it involves dancing. :w
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 16/10/2009 09:11
Tried jurus langkah with faster speed.
cut my little, index and middle finger in one slash.

Thank’s to the tape...  x-))

We always take our wrist for granted, now I can see how important this small region of our body is in our daily life... really difficult to do anything right when your wrist is injured.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 17/10/2009 22:10
Private session with Bang Husin.
… err… by private I mean practicing in class, however, with Bang Husin every class is private. He comes to you, tell you something you can improve, and add something that he thinks will be useful for you, specifically.

Today I went home at noon after practice and sleep for the rest of the afternoon. Not because the class was demanding… not physically, but it still broke my nerves down. Remember the first few days you drive a car on the road? It wasn’t physically demanding, but you feel boneless after you get home. That's how I feel today.

My theme today was straight punch, and I need to un-learn what is already part of myself and re-learn something new.

The session was about few empty handed applications from pu’un and langkah, but it required mastery in one of Seliwa’s basic principle, ‘nothing is committed’. Which I found myself lacking.

I know that must be able to change direction of my arm (and leg) at slightest stimulus from my opponent, it is on the first page of the book (if Seliwa ever had any manual book at all). But it is easier said than done. My shotokan background has me hard-wired with powerful jab and cross, combined with strong double guard (err… did I say shotokan? :-P).

But the common sense behind the ‘non committed attack’ is indisputable, you don’t want to surrender your limb in blade fighting. :o

After lots of failure trials with Bang Husin laughingly slapped my face over and over again (imagine putting knife there), I found little trick that may help. Imagine you are holding a blade while delivering a punch. I believe you’d agree that knowledgeable person won’t pull his arm way behind his ear and throw a slash in wide arc to other person carotid artery. They only do it in Hollywood. A proper slash would be a jab-like thrust followed by quick angled withdrawal right at the moment of (or slightly before) touch. That’s how Seliwa's punch should be delivered. Not a feint, it is still a punch capable of inflicting damage, but must also be flexible enough to adapt for any changing circumstances.

Bang Husin taught me series of reactions against any techniques put against your punching arm… all requires agility and sensitivity to your opponent’s energy (including if it is only a gesture). They are well designed tricks indeed, however, putting them into practice will require lots of drill (and in my case, un-learning). Doing pre-arranged techniques with cooperative partner is one thing, but punching with high speed not knowing what your partner will do is completely another thing. I need a tuishou kind of drill.

Long way to go... ;D
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 17/10/2009 22:13
With time on Saturday and Sunday getting more expensive for me, I asked Bang Husin for private sessions at night on weekdays… he agreed.

I imagine it going to be exciting sessions. And tiring too. Driving home about 60 kilometers at 11 or 12 PM? I will need approval from those two little children at home (through their mother, of course x-))).
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 11/11/2009 15:16
Thank you to technology (cheap one: mirror, expensive options: vid cam)

Just realize that anytime I work with special tricks (folding golok, twisting or wrist-direction-changing) I left my arm hanging dead in front of me. Apparently while I was busy working with little part of my arm, I am forgetting the bigger picture.

Looking at my recorded performance, if I were an opponent, I would definitely attack that dead arm. Knowing that I didn't do it for feinting (it was a 'main jujur' stuff), I don't have anything behind my sleeve to anticipate the attack.

Compare it with Bang Husin's (that now I consciously pay attention to those particular tricks) I found that he works his wrist while at the same time moving his elbow, hence his arm never sit in any position for more than split second, it constantly moving.

There are times when you think you knew, but later you realize that you don't. The joy of learning.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: santri kinasih on 12/11/2009 14:37
Antara needs to practice with mantrijeron before having a session with babe husin...Just a little advice.. :)
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 24/11/2009 23:00
Too bad Uda, I already started personal session with Bang Husin. ::)

It was two weeks a go, I found myself in vicinity of blok S while trying to avoid the darkest side of Jakarta’s traffic. I pulled over to the nearest Mosque for praying then called Bang Husin, just a courtesy call. His respond was simple, “get yourself down here and lets practice.”

Two hours of exclusive training with the master himself, my index finger is not fully recover yet. :-[

We drilled the Seliwa’s arm grabbing and joint lock. At first I thought “O yeah, joint lock, just how much variation of joint locks are there on earth?” Especially with some Aikido training still lurking under my conscious mind.

O-ho, but this is really an eye opener.

While the techniques have similarity with typical joint-locks one can found in other martial art (such as Aikido, Chin-Na, Jujutsu etc.), but Bang Husin really showed me his quality as master. He is so strong and so relax at the same time.

If you don’t follow me, imagine this. I grab his left wrist with my right hand, then I turned it clockwise. My Aikido doctrine would suggest Bang Husin to follow my movement and immobilize my joint when it is fully extended. He did that, yes, but then he did the opposite at exactly the same fluidity. Instead of turning his wrist clockwise, blending with my movement, he turned it anti-clockwise (from my perspective). Normally our force would collide, his wrist turning to the opposite direction of my grabbing palm, but to my surprise we didn’t find ourselves in arm wrestling. I couldn’t feel any resistance in my palm, as if I was grabbing nothing. Suddenly I found myself under his painful finger lock.

I tried again with tighter grab, but the result is the same. I just couldn’t hold his wrist from turning. Not that Bang Husin over-powered me, I simply couldn’t feel any resistance in my palm. I imagined, even if Bang Husin put ultra-slippery oil around his wrist, the result wouldn’t be like this. It feels as if Bang Husin had followed my momentum, as dictated by Aikido, that I felt no resistance. Except that of course, Bang Husin actually opposing my force.

Following my request, we repeated the movement … I don’t know… hundred times? But I still cannot see how he did it. And there were no explanation too, all he said was simply “We will try this over and over again, you will eventually able to do it.” With Bang Husin, there is not much theory (only his typical grinning expression x-))). I believe this is one of the “rasa” thingy silat people often talked about. You cannot describe it, nor learn it by observing the details… you just need to feel it.

Two weeks has passed. I still need to be very careful when lifting heavy things. The pain in the fingers. :-\

Maybe I should follow Uda SK’s suggestion after all. :D
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: santri kinasih on 26/11/2009 13:37
If you had time, we should probably have a silat duduk session...We study the laws of seliwa moves...
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Mantrijeron14 on 01/12/2009 10:27
Dimas Antara,
Actually your case is everybody's case  x-)), almost all seliwa disciples experienced the same.

your huge power to have his arm locked was not oppossed by the full arm movement, instead of doing that, Babe just turned his wrist against your direction, probably this was the trap. When you think you have no resistence in doing particular technique yet comfortable in the execution, you (obviously us :) ) forget that his wrist has smoothly changed the direction and ready to hook and pin your fingers. And then prevails the old saying: no pain, no gain.... :o

Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 02/12/2009 07:52
Well... with no pain I can train without long resting period  :w that's for sure  x-))

Thing that stroke me with those techniques, they weren't anything "uncoverable" by careful observation. I DID my observation and there was no tricks. Just plain movement done skillfully. There won't be any "Aha, I know the secret!!" moment, just diligent practice until "Aha, now I can do it too."

I wonder if we should practice "sambut" with the master himself to be able to gain such expertise, or can we attain the same skill level by practicing the same movement with our colleagues? Likely the earlier...
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 11/12/2009 16:17
yahoo… [yahoo] my 2000cc car can reach 11 kilometres per litre. So it is true, fuel economy relies mostly on your driving style.

Ehm… back to silat. ::)

If it was a life blade, I had cut the inside of my left arm three times this week.

Still cannot go pass the third kembang, the Potek.

I am getting comfortable with ‘langkah’ and ‘patah’. In most cases, I can do two out of ten to my own satisfaction, i.e. the speed and form. Gosh, only twenty percent :-[. It is my father’s tip of mastery; perform the same jurus ten times (or more, depend on length and difficulty level) without resting, see how many good form you can make. It is especially truer on the 8th, 9th, and 10th performance when you are tired (or in Seliwa’s case, out of breath). My father always set moderate target. 100%. ::)

The ‘potek’? Nnnaahhh… terrible. :-X

There was a glimpse of ‘langkah’ and ‘patah’ in my previous postings, so now is about ‘potek’.

Frankly I am not sure if I understand the word correctly (reminder: ask Bang Husin). To my understanding ‘potek’ is … err… chipping? Breaking just a little piece of something? Somehow I don’t think I see anything ‘potek’ in the jurus.

The obvious things are cutting your opponent attacking arm (not a kind slice, you may want to take that arm home with you), combo of low attacks (the bigger the calve, the nicer the slice), and combination of kick and golok (quick, pick one, golok or kick? ups, sorry, you’re late).

This jurus has gone further than just teaching principles like ‘langkah’ or ‘patah’, apparently ‘potek’ is more tactical, but still built under Seliwa’s principle.

Kamas MJ demonstrated the arm cutting to my arm, and I still remember the chilling sensation in my spine to have that golok move round my wrist… three times.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 11/12/2009 16:24
Last Sunday we have tumpengan celebration [ultah], graduation of Kamas MJ and Akang Abu Zakka. The two are now considered as official inheritors of Golok Seliwa School and are allowed to teach, acknowledged and ‘ijazah’-ed by Bang Husin.

The meaning of the word ‘ijazah’ is too complicated for me to translate. As noun, it is a piece of ‘certificate’, but it can also mean something more complicated like ‘bestowing someone with authority’.

Little note with the tumpeng, the coned yellow rice.
According to tradition, we must place the tumpeng on the ground with us sitting in circle surrounding it, and we are not allowed to use utensils, including plates. Grab with your five fingers, and bring the food directly to your mouth…. (and we just finished throwing people in muddy ground). Well, it shows togetherness and humility (there is no report of diarrhea, luckily x-)))
Oh… the tradition also says that we must finish the tumpeng in one go, there must not be left-over, and it must not be removed to other place. It symbolize our determination in studying Seliwa … the interesting part is, the tumpeng was made for twenty people and there were only ten or so of us ???. The fact that we actually manage to finish it can mean that we are either committed, or simply… horde of hungry beings. [lucu]

Congratulation to Kamas MJ and Akang Abu Zakka.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: sedyaleksana on 11/12/2009 16:41
Congratulation to MJ14 & Abu Zakka.  [top]
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Pemulung on 11/12/2009 17:41
Congrats to master Emje Embe (kang MJ14) and master A-to-Z (Akang Abu Zakka)  [top] [top]
Hope Golok Seliwa's lineage of Grand Master Bang Husen will be developed to next level.  [pray2]

Warm Regards,

Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: hudzaifah on 11/12/2009 22:04
ga' jadi ah replynya pake bahasa bule'....,, ??? :-\
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 13/12/2009 05:48
Loo... silakan saja Mas Hudz, wong saya pake bahasa bule supaya bisa menyamarkan ujub dan ria-nya saya aja koq  x-))

True what people say, once you're in position of authority, you will often find yourself in dilemma. :-[ Well, as moderator I am obliged to keep any postings here in English, but putting the spirit of togetherness above the regulation, I believe we should tolerate some Bahasa Indonesia, up to the level where we need to open separated thread in Bahasa Indonesia section.

...I believe if any of the viewer who don't understand Bahasa Indonesia (yea you wish :o --- see how ujub I am? ;D) asking for translation, there are plenty of  helpful souls around.

Jadi jangan malu-malu... ::)
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 13/12/2009 06:10
Just finish my morning session... another cut on forearm.

The thing is, I have three goloks. One is too long and heavy, one is too short and light, and one is simply too sharp :w.

I found that after practicing with one golok for sometime, I need to adjust my inner feeling if I'd like to practice with other golok. True that in Seliwa, our golok is made to our own size, and we should practice with that particular golok. Yet, I believe that we should be able to perform with any kind of golok. Who knows?

Please don't think that I am thinking ahead by having three different goloks to practice with, no. I just cannot find one who fit with me yet, and those three goloks are trial orders :w. Nevertheless, it gives me insight of how difficult it is to adjust to different kind of weapon, hence one who can comfortably play any size and shape of golok must have been through lots and lots of training.

... remind me of my father's saying, 'you don't want to go to the jungle with rifle you don't know well'
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: hummdee6 on 14/12/2009 16:39
@bang antara...

maybe in the next/master level, all the practioner of Silat Golok Suliwa Bang/Babe Husein should comfortable with any kind of weapon.
Because when I (and my friend) visit to the 'dojo' (tempat latihan), I saw Bang/Babe Husein and one of the senior student fluently play with any golok, even with trident (trisula).

Maybe this is your next trainig objective.. comfortable with anykind of weapons, even with bare hand.

...make me remind to samurai (s), they look helpless without their katana.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Mantrijeron14 on 16/12/2009 09:47
Mas Chandrasa, Cak Pemulung and Gan Hudz (eventhough you haven't speak up... I assummed you had the same intention with others :) ), thank you all for the felicitation, it is still long way to go for mastery, and I know my GPS coordinate  :'(,

Dimas Antara, a minor revision if I may, such "ijazah" is a certification for training not valid for teaching this style independently. Another "ijazah" for such requires a candidate to undergo much more comprehensive observation from the Guru himself.
@bang Hummdee6, AFAIK, the samurai's strikes shall not be blunt without their katana onhand. They also could use the jutsu of barehand. CMIIW

Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: hummdee6 on 16/12/2009 10:06
thanks for the correction.
maybe i just too influenced by japanesse anime about samurai lifes (such us KYO, samurai X, etc).
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: santri kinasih on 16/12/2009 14:55

A professional football player should not use brand new pair of shoes in an important event...In golok seliwa, we are trained to get better acquainted with the golok, knife etc..We may be able to new golok or rented golok or  borrowed golok or found golok...because we learn the philosophy of golok. However, we may not be able to use it as good as the golok of our own...It still take a few minutes or a bit of practice to make it similar...

@ dimas antara..

Kang MJ14 is still not allowed to open a golok seliwa school..but he is now a licenced trainer of golok seliwa..Kang MJ14 is now the Chief Trainer of Golok Seliwa who is directly trained by Babe Husin...


Golok seliwa has now adopted a new way of training...a modernized one..
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: sedyaleksana on 16/12/2009 15:21
Kang MJ14 is now the Chief Trainer of Golok Seliwa who is directly trained by Babe Husin
Bow to "Chief Trainer of Golok Seliwa". [top]. Again, congratulation kang MJ.  I'm sure you'll be a good and wise trainer.

Golok seliwa has now adopted a new way of training...a modernized one.
Glad to hear this. I think this is a good step for Golok Seliwa to be developed to the next level.  [top] [top]
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Taufan on 16/12/2009 16:16
Congrat bang MJ14... looking forward golok seliwa "new wave" in action  [top]
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 20/12/2009 22:31


Golok seliwa has now adopted a new way of training...a modernized one..

That should explain the less painful session for the last few weeks. [lucu]
Lets hope we can leave the motto 'no saturday without injury' behind. :w
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 20/12/2009 22:32
Not sure where to start, too many things in my mind. So bear with me, I’ll try to pour it as systematically as possible (I am confirmed right brained – and nearly crashed too).

Ok… mmm … the main theme for the last two weeks is paradigm shift.
If you come from sport or realistic (read: modernized) martial art and tried Silat tradisional for sometime, you will notice some significant differences.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 20/12/2009 22:34
First, you’ll get confused with its un-systematic way of teaching. You need to stay for a while digesting anything poured at you until finally you get your new knowledge rounded-up. The time needed to reach that point is depend on many factors, but I can tell two important ones, the generosity of your teacher and your ability to absorb.

Second, your modern mind will try to analyze the movements, you’ll have the tendency to ask to yourself “will this work in real fight?”, “who on earth would attack anybody with this kind of strike at the first place?”, “will this work in battle-stress condition?”, “Why so many alternatives to deal with similar attack?” and so on.

In Seliwa, you have overly generous teacher. I often have to ask Bang Husin not to add anymore application for it is already too much to digest in one session, but apparently Bang Husin really enjoy teaching (and applying his teaching to others, the realistic way :'( if you know what I mean :-X). That being said, much of progress in Seliwa depend on your own ability to absorb. In my case, my deepest thank to whoever invented video-cam.

Being poisoned by modern teachings, I had difficulties with some of the movements. Those feel awkward for my ‘the simpler the better’ mind, and yes, I often wondered if some movements have any fighting value at all.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 20/12/2009 22:37
And now the turning point.

After working my way up to “potek/kotek”, I returned to square one by reviewing my first pu’un. Uda SK assisted me in digging this simplest and plainest jurus of Seliwa.

Very surprising. As I have written early in this thread, I learned that 1st pu’un trained us how to put our weight for first contact, and how to perform basic block-and-strike. However, in our last session together, Uda SK revealed many possibilities covered by this simple jurus by changing several variables, i.e. weight distribution, timing, order of execution, direction of palm, and form of our fist. We ended up practicing tactile sensitivity for arm tapping and trapping drills, quite similar to those of Wing Chun. I am still amazed with how many things can be learned from this “most boring jurus” in the world. Once you got the principle, you can intuitively do countless variations.

(Tip for you who study shotokan karate and feel like to add Wing Chun to your arsenal, look no further, play around with san-ren-tsuki. Be creative with what-if scenario, and you’ll get your own Shotokan sticky hands)

So that’s one.

In later sessions with Bang Husin, somehow I get comfortable with movements, including those I considered awkward. Why? Because I can see it from different perspective now… allow me to elaborate.

I had few session of choreographed fight, assisted by Kang Abu Zakka. Working my way through various application and counter-application (isi and bongkar), I arrived in simple yet hard won conclusion. Apparently, movements are divided into two categories, I called them “the first contact” (yes, I am a trekkie), and “the follow-ups”.

As the name implies, the first contact are those used in initial stage of combat. You see someone deliver an attack to your nose, and you need to react quickly. The first contacts are simple, lightning speed, and involve only the most agile body part i.e. your arm.

While the first contact can serves as fight-ender in itself, but the world doesn’t always follow our plans (does it?). Should you find yourself still standing face to face with your “dancing partner” after the first contact, you’ll need follow ups. And guess what, after the first collision you’ll likely find yourself in somewhat unnatural position. Say your weight has shifted, your hip twisted to a direction, and your hands are hanging somewhere. The same thing also apply to you opponent. You no longer facing someone standing straight with full guard on both side of his cheek.

At this stage you need follow-ups that allow you to react and seize any opportunity presented by situation. Trust me, you’ll thank you master for teaching you such awkward movements. Apparently Seliwa’s approach is different with some martial arts I learned in the past. If in the past I learned to keep my spine straight and my balance … err… balanced (?) so I can move easily to anticipate anything, Seliwa teaches me to move from even the clumsiest position I may find in a fight (take more time and effort, I suppose. This is another note I need to keep while practicing).

The thing is, follow ups are usually taught as if those were “first contact”, hence leaving you asking to yourself “which idiot would fight this way at the first place?”. Don’t blame yourself for it is a healthy question. Those follow-ups don’t make sense, that is, being taught without knowing its actual position in a fight. Once you intuitively execute the movement (or the more correct way of saying it -applying the principle-) in a fight, you’ll find your ‘aha’ moment. Those movements do make sense after all.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 20/12/2009 22:38
The new enlightenment makes me think.

By practicing martial art, we are actually trying to re-program our nerve system to certain stimulus, that is those commonly found in a fight. Silat with its difficult to understand movements is actually trying to expose its practitioner to many kind of combat happenings, so one will be able to adapt quickly to any change of stimuli. The more proficient the fighter, the more sensitive he or she against any stimulus. It is ‘bacaan’, ‘rasa’, ‘napel’, ‘usik’, or even ‘rasa sinar’… there is nothing magical about it, just a highly exposed nerve system that can detect even the smallest change. Similar to a story I heard about a senior doctor who can diagnose a patient with 100% accuracy simply by looking at the patient. Somehow, his experience can detect the slightest clue of people’s sickness, which to him comes as ‘instant intuition’.

Experience is the greatest teacher, and a good perguruan is actually trying to provide simulation so students can gain ‘experience’ in a safe and controlled manner.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 20/12/2009 22:41
Now about modern teaching.

The old way of ‘bear with your master, you’ll eventually get it’ is a valid motto, yes (been doing it for sometime and it works, as you just see). However, I believe it would be helpful to the learning process if we have theory session formalized. Say, we develop a framework or road-map of Seliwa practice, so student can always tell his or her position against Seliwa’s curriculum (took me sometime to realize that some of the movements are follow-ups and should be trained with different mind-set), what is his or her short-medium-long term target, and assessed their own performance and progress.

If the student is mature enough, he or she could even develop their own practice program.

In my case, I need to develop more tactile sensitivity (due to my previously long ranged training), and in longer term, my body coordination for follow-ups movements. Especially those that involve silat’s typical HAOV (Habitual Act of Violence).

Well… we are going to have a modern teaching in place. So no need to worry. :w
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 20/12/2009 22:44
@bang antara...

maybe in the next/master level, all the practioner of Silat Golok Suliwa Bang/Babe Husein should comfortable with any kind of weapon.

I believe so Bang Hummdee...

Because when I (and my friend) visit to the 'dojo' (tempat latihan), I saw Bang/Babe Husein and one of the senior student fluently play with any golok, even with trident (trisula).

Ah, we have two seniors who love trident. Let me guess which one you met.
tell me the size of his waistline? :w
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: hummdee6 on 30/12/2009 13:33

 :D :D :D [lucu] [lucu] [lucu]

The senior student (i thought) has weight about 80 KG (or more)
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 06/01/2010 14:43
Mmm... all the senior students are weighted more than 80 kgs... some are bulky on the chest, some on biceps and triceps, and some are somewhere within the mid section. x-))

Oh... an update... here is confirmation about Seliwa's very short history...
My version rules, check Uda SK's story near the end of the clip ... hahahahahaarrr <evil laugh>


Sitting next to Uda SK is Abang MayLee...
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: hummdee6 on 12/01/2010 13:10
Ohhh ..
its seem Uda SK who play with the trident.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 02/02/2010 15:16
All right, so I joined a knife workshop held by Defense Factory in Bandung.

Just like all concept derived around Bruce-Lee’s “the method of no method”, the workshop is about practicality, usefulness, and reasonable techniques of self-defense. While in silat I learn the ‘how to perfectly anticipate an aggression’, in the workshop (and I believe it is reflected in all JKD’s training) I learn about ‘how to effectively anticipate an aggression’.

Now, I can sense some people got their toe stepped on. What is this all about being perfect and being effective? What is the difference and which one is more superior? Hang on there.

Here is an illustration.
Doing Seliwa, I learn about form and its application, and there are drills to enhance our receptivity to anticipate an aggression. In short, Seliwa (and I could safely say that it holds true with most of silat system I know) focus on enhancing our ability to ‘see’, ‘feel’, ‘sense’, ‘hear’, or basically ‘detect’ any incoming aggression. The better we are with the system, the earlier we can anticipate an attack. The premise is that the earlier you can detect an attack, the better we can anticipate it. Even at the idealistic level, we should be able to neutralize an attack without inflicting any harm to the attacker.

As with modern (and I believe to have titled ‘realistic’) way of self-defense, the premise is that human’s perception is limited, or even if some people acknowledged that such enhanced sensory skill is real, the method to train it is no longer available or simply impractical for modern life. Hence the practice is stressed on how to effectively react with whatever you have. If somehow you only realize that there is knife coming to your stomach, and you realized it only after it is approximately two centimeters from its target, you just have to react with the few options left… and please expect a cut or two… hopefully not lethal.

You see… for an open minded, there is value in both approaches. Some will pick one approach, and some another.

As for me, both are fun, and that’s the only thing that matter. They don’t contradict each other.

I have Bang Husin to train with, someone who has reached that sort of sensory skill that by exchanging blows with him, I can learn to enhance my sensitivity too (that’s the conclusion Kang Abu Zakka and I drawn sometime a go. You must do the drill with your master, not with other student, so you can appreciate the true feeling. Of course, you need to actually ‘challenge’ your master to prove that he is indeed a master – we in Seliwa did, I don’t remember any training without me get injured :-P). On the other hand, the mind-set of always be ready and practical when called for, also holds its precious value. It is like balancing between religion and science. Hold your vision up high, while keeping your feet on the ground. Be dreamful and practical at the same time... (and for me... to have fun!! [[peace2]])

All in all, I do enjoy the workshop and looking forward to have some experiments with the gang in Seliwa.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Mantrijeron14 on 03/02/2010 09:53
So you have joined the WS... mmmm I failed to participate just because... some of "you know what- domestic affair" :P my negotiation skill required to be re-evaluated :-[

Can't wait to have you shared with us the WS materials, further I think... a true silaturahmi of martial artists is conducted through that particular way of ws, in which everybody will feel the real touch of the respective discipline.

Seliwa blades technique, particulary knife, shall develop to adjust with the currrent situation. The technique is there, the approach probably different with the old time teaching.

cogito ergo sum
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 03/02/2010 20:02
Guess we all know better than trying to negotiate those 'domestic affairs' :w

Something I like from the WS is the attitude where training ground is much like a lab where ideas are tested and got either promoted or discarded. I imagine it would be fun to constantly have sessions of experiments and improvements.

... and I do believe we in Seliwa are taking exactly the path, looking at how much our training has differed from the first time I joined which was only few months a go... ha..ha..ha...  x-))
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 13/04/2010 10:20
I have been resting for approximately three months now, thanks to my shoulder injury. I hurt my rotary cuff and deltoid sometime in late January. Cannot really understand how and when it happened though. I just woke up in the morning and found my right arm immovable. My Buddhist friends simply said, “It is karma getting paid. When the time is due, it doesn’t need any cause.”

Looking back at my younger days, I don’t want to imagine how I would pay some of the old karma :-X.

* * *

There is a maxim in bodybuilding, “it is the rest between exercise that gives you bigger muscles, not the exercise itself.” Well, let see how my resting period have contributed to my silat.

First of all, I realize that we are more fragile than what we think.
Lets return to our youthful imagination when we join any martial art. We want to be invincible, or at least able to knock down an average thug.

What would I do if –suppose- today I had the opportunity to prove my prowess? Say a beautiful girl, next of kin of Spanish guitar, radiant face, emeraldish eyes, and strawberry-like lips is being bullied by skinny macho wannabe (oh, add that the girl is rich ::))… (and the thug is skinny 8))

Well… I need to consider that I have crippled right arm.

Movie heroes usually survive series of fights against gauntlets of opponents regardless of blows taken. I don’t think it would work in real world. Survival in numbers is always the best option.

Since I cannot move my right elbow too much away from my right ribs, I discovered that I couldn’t do much Pu’un, but still have workable Kembang. Hmm, I found another difference of the two categories. They have different effective range and different way of channeling power.

… and Third,
I gained weight… :-\
Apparently I still need to develop ‘rasa’ on having good match between my activity and my appetite. [[run2]]
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 13/08/2010 17:56
Warning: this topic has not been posted in for at least 120 days.
Unless you're sure you want to reply, please consider starting a new topic.

Hehehehe... yes I want to reply, please :w


Home, finally. Lets hope that I don’t have to return to those jungle soon, at least not until after lebaran. The last four months was awfully exciting for those who enjoy adventure, yet, while I do love adventure, being married brings different flavor in life, even for the most reckless adventurer (assuming they care to get married at the first place ::)).

Ok, back to Seliwa.
My wrist is healing, only feels little uncomfortable when turning it outward. I started to recover my Pu’un, but my golok still need to wait.

Consider it blessing in disguise, I have been practicing Pu’un with unconsciously trying to protect my wrist, hence no tension at the end of strike (a punch, snap, or turn). To my amazement, it led me to personal discovery of how a typical strike should be done in Seliwa. No tension at all.

It took me enormous effort of adaptation. I used to delivered strike the way people thrust spear through muscles, i.e. tension. I found here that total (almost extreme) relaxation could produce similar result, but with greater flexibility to anticipate any change. Only certain part of my hand need to be tensed to protect it from impact, somewhere far at the tip of the hand, and only for fraction of second. I hope this will lead me to understanding of “kosong-isi” and “tenaga ujung” philosophy I’ve been hearing about.

Well… maybe another year of adaptation will do. It is great overhaul for me. Completely unlearn and relearn my muscle anew.

The good news is, it all lies in Pu’un [top]. I can feel it now that those simple movements are actually conditioning of this particular way of striking. Do all the six pu’uns everyday, and you’ll eventually grasp the essence in it. Even without understanding of its principle. I found it hard to practice Pu’un with my current state of muscle habit, now I know that it needs different approach, and forcing me to learn it. Repetition will do its part. All I need is patience.

Interesting isn’t it? Instead of talking a techniques or concept to the death, all you need is practice. A carefully tailored set of movements by a genius long time a go will do its job for you. I believe even more now that a good style –not just style with sets of fighting movements-will take care most of your learning for you. You don’t even need to have a talkative master. [lucu]

… start counting months. 8)
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: luri on 14/08/2010 07:44
dah lama banget ga liat tulisan2 omAntara, akhirnya ada yang bisa disimak lagi nihh

Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 21/08/2010 08:36
Thank you for the ‘thank you’ button, Bang Luri… where else could we get thanked by rattling around? :w

Captain’s log, star date –312,363.4 (we are still two hundreds years before star date is invented, so the negative sign).

Feel strain in my left deltoid, apparently my left arm needs more effort adapting. Kinetically speaking, I waste some energy by uneccesarily lifting my left arm to puch the Seliwa way. This especially true when facing with right side forward.

Found that punching ‘the relaxed way’ is easier when started from relaxed elbow at approximately in front of centerline, then propelled by using only triceps. The Wing Chun way.

There is however, a slight challenge. As far as weight distribution and striking side concerned, Pu’uns take all permutation into practice. Especially after Pu’un 3. Take striking side (with left or right arm) and combined them with weight distribution (on left or right leg). If that gives me four permutation, which I could say ‘naah, not much’, Pu’uns are always done with one leg in front of another (almost linear), so there is front leg or back leg factor to consider when shifting weight. This gets even more crucial since Seliwa emphasizes reverse striking, which we often find ourselves punching with left arm while standing at front right stance, but with weight put on left leg. Oh, the left hip is thrust forward to support left arm, so while weight is 80% put on the left leg, the left hip is at more advance position then the right. It gives you lower back pain and ankle strain to stay at this position for long time. But that what makes Betawi silat its typical swaying flavor.

In nutshell, while I can refer to Wing Chun for relaxed fighting principles, I need to make minor (yeah, minor, right ::)) adjustment (since I know only basic principles of Wing Chun).

I wish I’d pay more attention when my father told me to practice my ren-zuki before switching to more stylish boxing guard. When doing correctly, standard ren-zuki drill gives you the same relax power by keeping elbow at the side of the body, and not swaying (which is actually the content of Pu’un 1 and Pu’un 2. I no longer wonder why the first two Pu’un are remarkably similar with Karate’s sanbon or ren zuki. It is about progressive learning. Learn the relax punch with static posture first, because after Pu’un 3, we will twist your body at the mercy of our imagination >:D).

I often observe my friends doing Seliwa’s rapid strike with no hip twist, body sway, or weight shifting. The result is quick but non-committed strikes. While it has its own merit and very useful when applied under the right tactic (Bruce Lee has his own very effective ‘rapid blast’), but that is not how Bang Husin does it. Bang Husin’s rapid strikes are committed and powerful, he employs hip twist and body sway to large extent to support his strike, yet, the successive strikes are still pretty fast. I believe the key is strong and flexible core muscles (because I learned that when I try to imitate Bang Husin’s performance, I need to have a toilet nearby [bath]).

Uh, that reminds me of Seliwa breathing method, extreme pressure at lower part of stomach. The Taoist breathing. Oh, my. (See, that’s the benefit of having a practice diary… you know where you did it wrong :-X)

The lesson is…

Walk all the Pu’un slowly, no matter how easy it may look. One Pu’un will create solid base for the next one. Watch for every details, including breathing. Jumping to more fancy Pu’un hastily, or skipping some details, you’ll find yourself back with earlier Pu’uns (that’s good for learning actually, I did it, but don’t go in circle for too long. Unless if you didn’t have enough ride with Merry-go-round in your childhood ;)).

Listen to dad when he talks! [pant]
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Pemulung on 28/08/2010 14:06
Always superb essay ! [toop]
Full of soft-gently humour, philosophy and MA expertise.  :) :)
Keep write and explore-journey to it-your self  pak antara.  [top]
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 13/09/2010 11:12
First of all, Eid Mubarak. Mohon Maaf Lahir dan Bathin.

In this Eid I spent time with my parents who live in Depok, after spending last two Eid in my mother in law’s in Kediri.

To make the long story short, after a typical Lebaran ritual with parents, I sit together with my father in terrace while mother and my wife trying to tame the two little children in living room. They know well enough to leave the boys –the father and son- with their toys.

So I showed Pu’un to Dad.

“Stiff like a board,” he laughed after I finished. “I know a little about silat but you need to work hard to call that silat.”

Panting, I reclaimed my seat next to him.

“Tell me more.”

“You see,” he relaxed his legs. “You erected your spine as in karate, and your aikido was no different. It still shows here.”

“Aikido was a katana-based art. The spine is supposed to be erected.”

“True, but this one requires dynamic upper body movement. You need to work more there.”

I told him that I had realized that and have been working on it.

“Yea... but I see you doing it your way.”

“Which is?”

“You spend most of your time on the third jurus, don’t you?”

I was surprised. “How do you know?”

 “Your third jurus is sharper than the other five, even compared to the first and second. My guess is you found it interesting, or challenging, or whatever, so you decided to get your hand on it before spend more time with other juruses.”

True, I said. Third Pu’un has its twist. I can use it as a gate to the other juruses, or Silat Betawi in general.

“Well, don’t.”

I gave him the tell-me-more look. He laughed.

“Unlike karate where every kata is a fighting system of its own, your juruses compose a complete fighting set, they complemented to each other. Hence, in term of conditioning, you should practice them all together, gaining a round understanding of your system, not digging deep in only one jurus.”

I spend approximately one minute considering his words. Why didn’t I think of that.

“You have the habit of mastering one particular item before moving to other, that’s why you didn’t see it.”

Gosh, he read my mind. “How do you know?”

Smirking. “Me your dad”.



So I left with a homework. Father asked me to do complete six Pu’un as a set everyday for next hundred days. Do it at moderate speed and power. Do it as relax as the movement allows. It is a re-conditioning session, I must not exert myself yet, the aim is to give my muscles opportunity to learn which to contract, which to relax, and when. Basically the idea is the same with my own purpose, only his method sounded more promising.

“Why hundred days?”

“Old timers do it.”

“Why did they pick hundred?”

“It sounds cool.”

God bless the old timers.
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: crashed brain on 23/10/2010 19:35
When I visited LIPI..I have not chance to meet Antara...
Next time, I will call first...  [lucu]  [[peace2]]
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 23/10/2010 20:05
Goodies... look who we got here... my very own master Bang Crashed Brain... [hai] Does it mean that you wont go to LIPI if I am not around? He...he...he...  8)
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: crashed brain on 24/10/2010 13:27
naah.. I don't mean that bro...

I promised uda SK and kangmas MJ to see them training.
they said you have joined them for quite a long time.
But when I came to LIPI, there were only Babeh, uda SK, May Lee, and several others.. MJ could not come because his son got fever and you were on duty back to the jungle  :D

So next time I come to LIPI, I will call you first... :D
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Arya on 24/10/2010 17:16
I love Bang Husin...
Keep fight bang..
You're the best in Golok Seliwa  [top]
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 03/01/2011 12:17
Just ranting around,

I finally finished my 2011 resolution, two days later than planned.
Reading it through, the hazy impression I’ve been seeing from November last year when I started making it come to realization. There is only tiny amount of time and energy allocated for silat.

Apparently it is not just for the teacher, whom people always say to be too poor to teach, it is also for us, too poor to learn. Too poor that we don’t have time, that we cannot put our hobby into our very own list of priority.

The top two on the list are family and work, and please notice the sequence.

This so called modern world requires us the parent to be more vigilant with our children, to win their trust so we can equip them with self-control against all the adverse information they are exposed to in daily basis.

Work? We all know. In work nowadays, we face more challenges and problems in a week than our fathers did in a year.

I even have to cut my daily morning practice to help my wife with laundry and house keeping, children included. Part of my resolution for a closer relationship, before leaving for work.

Well, maybe it is not really abandoning silat after all. I simply spend less time practicing how to kill other people efficiently, but I spend more time practicing trust, patience, and love... teaching my children the real self-defense they are going to need to face the world.


With all that said... I just come to realization that 'Langkah', the first jurus under 'Kembang' in Seliwa is based on exactly the same principles as those of 'eight figure' in Arnis. Yes, exactly the same, if not identical...

Last month, as part of end of year 'bersih-bersih' x-)), I found the pair of arnis sticks I bought in Manila three years a go before joining Seliwa. Trying some movements I learned in Phillipina, I found that they are now feel uncannily familiar. Yes, jurus langkah, while very simple in form, gives all the teaching needed to move a weapon around (be that stick or golok), covering  all part of our body from attack, striking back at opponent, some disarming, and even positioning the other arm to support the weapon.

... and that without knowing the 'isi' (have't learned them yet)... just by doing the movements (in my case sometime, absent mindedly ::)).

The joy of practicing  :w
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: Antara on 09/08/2011 23:34
"What's in a name? That which we call a rose
by any other name would smell as sweet."

If I met Shakespeare in last few days I would ask him “How about a set of movements with a same name?” and I can imagine he would give me a dumb look ???.

So last week I joined a workshop of Tri Suwanda Silat in TIMA, Cinere. I guess the name of Suwanda family is still an irresistible temptation within Silat community.

To cut the story short, the first set of movements I learn there was the Seliwa of Timbangan. "Great", I said to myself. Let see what happen when Seliwa meets Seliwa. ;D


The sets are different from Golok Seliwa, of course, but the principle is the same. Too identical to be called coincident. However, before I come to any conclusion about the two Seliwas came from the same root, I arrived at other realization.

There I saw my Judo days...
Also my karate days...

All those leg sweeps, ashi barai, the cat leg stance, neko ashi dachi, the strange inside kicking leg, mikazuki geri... goodie... how I could be so foolish not to realize that lots of Judo’s throwing techniques were invented under the principles of Seliwa. Also some movements in Karate KATA like those of UNSU, and my very favorite TEKKI... now I see what’s behind them.

Practicing at home, I found that those Seliwa movement of Timbangan flows easily with my Judo or Karate openings. As if I have been learning them for years instead of just last Saturday.

Also, they somehow enriched my own Golok Seliwa. The complicated leg movements of Timbangan also exist in Golok Seliwa, except that in Golok Seliwa they are hidden in principle of Jurus. Say, the simple movement of raising one leg in Pu’un number four covers most of the leg jurus in Timbangan. How? The Pu’un simply teaches to put your weight on back leg and let your front leg free... then your own sensitivity will lead to effective utilization of your front leg, that’s why Golok Seliwa utilizes lots of body sway. I remember intuitively doing some of the leg jurus of Timbangan sometime a go, simply by doing Pu'un over and over again. In Timbangan, however, all possible applications of front leg are listed, detailed, and practiced.

I like both approaches. Now that I meet both of them, I simply say that I like silat [top].

At philosophical level, I take that everything finally return to simplicity. We may encounter numerous method of teachings, but at the end of the journey, they all talk about the same thing. At higher plane we all are brothers.


Knowing this now ... I guess I need to re-evaluate my "my school is better" attitude [lucu]

... and... I feel pity to those I learn as collecting, or some people say, stealing movements from other schools.

Those people simply collecting applications, filling their brain with lots of ‘how-tos’... if they know better, they will benefit more from refining the wisdom hidden in their own school. Look around, yes, of course... I did just that last Saturday, but in the spirit of re-learning what you already have inside.

... and to have some variation in life too  :D
Title: Re: My Days with Golok Betawi "Seliwa"
Post by: akoekoko on 16/07/2014 16:24
Wow, such a epic story and full with knowledge for newbie like me, Salute :D