View Single Post
Old 06-22-2008, 08:17 AM   #14
sunny liberti
sunny liberti's Avatar
Dojo: Shobu Aikido
Location: Connecticut
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 68
Re: tieing in the two threads : men and women and developing internal power

First, we need to address the crowbar separation between the birthing models. It's really critical to making anything meaningful out of this ridiculous discussion.

On the one hand, we have the obstetrics model of birthing. In that model, birthing is painful, and people come up with all sorts of inventive ways to manage that - from drugs to fruity things like counting, contrived breathing, etc . . . Still the fundamental idea is that it's pain. And because so many women do experience tremendous pain, it must be fact. Furthermore, many women feel that some form of this is empowering, because they were "tough" and had to dig deep to handle that level of pain. I had a horrific birth experience, full of pain that was considered medically unmanageable. (I'll spare everyone the details.) If people could magically come out of that experience with internal martial skill just for having dealt with pain, I would be one of them. And I ain't got it. What happens there is restriction, contraction, blockage of energy flow that we have to fight against our own bodies [doesn't this seem opposite of internal martial skill?!], struggle, and finally we dig deep to wrestle the baby out with fear and pain. That might be a little extreme to describe some women's experience, but it's some flavor of that, in the OB model.

Now, completely outside that paradigm, there are women who birth with no pain, but instead find that it's the most powerfully ecstatic experience of their lives. That they are in NO pain, the are completely energetically open, and that the child comes into the world cocooned in the mother's incredibly powerful energy. They don't struggle, they don't fight. Instead, they seem to become almost generators of incredible power and energy that seems to put the newborn in a trance with her energy.

Next, it seems there is wild speculation going on here where people on both sides of this discussion are drawing conclusions based on assumptions that over-stretch from their experience. Until I hear from a woman who has actually had a fully realized orgasmic birth - not anything that falls under the obstetrics paradigm (that was my original point) - *AND* has credible internal martial skill (against uncooperative attackers), this conversation can be nothing outside of wild speculation on both sides. And to pretend that anyone really is doing more than that looks a bit silly to me.

Robert John wrote:
No it's impossible to discuss unless you can define what governs internal body mechanics, and an understanding of the basic body mechanics involved.
Robert, I think we are more in agreement than disagreement here. Just because it's my opinion that the discussion is pointless without defining what the hell actually happens in a birth experience (which I don't see as being altogether possible to do in the first place), doesn't mean that I don't also think that internal martial skill requires addition conditioning and training. And that that side of the comparison doesn't also deserve a good healthy dissection. It seems to me in my speculative state, that it's easier to talk about the body mechanics part - and I assume that many here will take that direction. It's darn near impossible to talk meaningfully about birthing alone, much less as it compares to martial arts!! Additionally, I can't go with any theory that a pain-based birth has anything to do with manifesting internal martial power.

Blissful birthing is probably an experience of internal power. An experience of it. It doesn't mean that I think those mothers can then go demonstrate internal martial skill. I'll also address, that while my husband and I are talking about this thread, his concern about where it's going is that we're very doubtfully talking about the same internal power. Just like there are many external powers, there are many forms of internal power. As my husband was saying to me: For instance, regarding the umbrella of external power - burning wood is different that lightning striking, which is different than water flowing . . . For internal power, there is the power to give, grow, and nurture life - and then there is tensegrity, holding multiple mental intention directions, storing power in the spine and releasing power from the spine, reverse breathing, etc.

I also noted that anything I say is speculation, as I have never birthed in that way, and have no internal martial skill. I specifically brought up yoga, so that it was clear exactly where my speculation is coming from. By the way, just as I don't waste my time with that 95% percent you mention in the martial arts world - which I happen to think is a generously low estimate - I also don't bother with fruity yoga either.

How this relates to internal power and birthing, I don't know if there is any overlap in blissful (ecstatic/orgasmic) birthing and developing internal martial skill. I don't know if the former seeds the latter in any way. Is that energy/power the same fundamental power that powers the trained tensegrity, etc . . . ? We can only each offer our observations and experiences. I've stated mine as clearly as I can. Once again - to drive this home - until I hear from a woman who has actually had a fully realized orgasmic birth - not anything that falls under the obstetrics paradigm - *AND* has credible internal martial skill (against uncooperative attackers), this conversation is nothing outside of WILD speculation on both sides. And to pretend that anyone really is doing more than that looks a bit silly to me.

All I really wanted to say about this in the first place was that if all you've ever been or seen a woman birthing in terrible pain, with or without drugs, you can't speak intelligently about how it does or doesn't translate to internal skill. The phenomena are not related. If you've birthed with such passion and joy that it was an energetic experience more than physical, AND you have real internal martial skills, I'd love to hear how you feel they are related or not.

Happy training,



A brave man dies once; cowards are always dying." --Moanahonga, Ioway
  Reply With Quote