Here is the part 2 of Hung Ga’s “Secret of Four Arrivals” (Sei Dou Ji Bei), important concept handed down from the Late Grand Master Lam Sai Wing!
Part two is dedicated to Muk Dou, “Eyes Arrival”. Find out the true meaning of the Muk Dou concept and its practical combat implications!
Grand Master Lam Sai Wing writes in the preface to his “Taming the Tiger in Gung Pattern” book (full translation available here):
Eyes Arrival: Clear and Distinct, not Confused.
(Muk Dou: Jak Gwong Ming Bat Man)
How does it relate to combat?
“Heart Arrival” (Sam Dou) was “knowing yourself”. “Eyes Arrival” (Muk Dou) is “knowing your enemy”. It is the evaluation of the situation, as well as the weak and strong points of the opponent(s).
Is he alone? There might be accomplice – all self-protection drills have to take this in account! Are there two of them, or even more?
Or – is the potential aggressor drunk or intoxicated? Does he look like seasoned street fighter, behave as trained martial artist, or is he just another big mouth?
Is he armed? If you can’t see his hands, eg. he has one of his hands behind the back, or in the front pockets of his hoodie, big big troubles – you can be stabbed numerous times before you even realize what is going on.
Etc. etc., you got the idea. Be ready (Sam Dou), find the target (Muk Dou), step-in (Juk Dou) and strike (Sau Dou)!
Grand Master Lam Sai Wing continues: “Having observed all strengths and weaknesses, attack weakness, and take what comes easily. ” Classical OODA loop: observe, orient, decide, and act!
But that is not all.
The eyes and so called “(Martial) Spirit” (Mou) San are closely connected. As one Chinese proverb says: “If the eyes have no spirit, the fists have no soul” (Ngaan Mou San, Kyun Mou Wan).
According to ancient Chinese medicine, a persons “spirit” (San) is reflected in ones yes – it is associated with our awareness. Clear, sparkling, responsive eyes are one indication of healthy and strong San. Muk Dou hence means composed spirit, radiating courage, and readiness to engage.
Watch a pre-fight staredown between the two fighters ready to squate off. The one who scares and intimidates the opponent with his “murderous look in his eyes” (Ngaan Lou Sat Hei) will probably win – some of the fights are won before their start. (Hell, I am scared of Ronda Rousey when she kills her opponent with her angrily eyes before the start of the first round!).
Apply the principle in the combat drills in our PHK Intro Kit: Beginner’s Guide to Chinese Martial Arts!
Pavel Macek Sifu, Practical Hung Kyun
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