Hi I am...
Sorry for my misunderstanding. I actually do wish that IMA and Wing Chun were more standardized. Wing Chun is more standardized for a few reasons, namely because of the few large organizations that exist. Also the majority of Wing Chun out there is from the Ip Man lineage. Also the Ip Man lineage (not including his Sihings and others) is much younger than other IMAs. With Wing Chun being further developed and spread in Hong Kong, a westernized Chinese region. His students and Ip Man all had western education. Ip Man being the last true old school grandmaster of Our lineage and being around to help his students develop stuff in Hong Kong.
If Yang Cheng Fu (or Wu Quan You, Chen Fa Ke or any of the old school guys like that) was in Hong Kong or any other Western country, we'd probably see the same thing.
The only reason I mentioned those names above was because those were the ones I knew and felt were the last ones of legend of their lines. They didn't live under the more restrictive communist era and lived through the last tumultuous times of China.
At the same time standardization can lead to over commercialization and dumbing things down. A part of the process if kung fu is the familial element which you don't find in other MAs. Sifu is your adopted father and the other students are your adopted brothers and sisters. For me that's an important part of learning for me. Being a part of the bigger picture. At the same time, I feel a larger responsibility to not besmirch the name of my sifus.
Whereas some schools crank out the certificates, diplomas, belts or sashes, the students who come from those might not feel the same responsibility. Some of those teachers just want to build an organization or just make money.
With standardization, I see the above situation happening a lot more. But that's just my opinion. The larger a school grows, the more that get lost in the mix. I remember Gary Lam said something to that line. In Hong Kong he was a well known Wing Chun teacher as well. He said he had thousands of students but only produced a few highly skilled students. Now he has a lot less students but the number of highly skilled students is much more, percentage wise of course.
If someone could standardize without bastardizing it and still keep an eye on QC, I'm all for it. Also not treating the MA like a money tree. I've known a couple of lineages where you gotta pay to go through the ranks which is totally messed up to me.
But I see obstacles for that happening. Such as the standardization of Taiji in China. A lot of Taiji is just flowery because of that. Now they're trying to do that in Wing Chun in China as well. Another organization in Hong Kong wants to do the same which will help in grading performances in competitions. So how far will it go.
None of the IMA organizations I can see are that organized across lineages. In their lineage it's OK but not across other lineages. The IMA lineages are friendly with each other (more so than the Ving Tsun lineages I know) but don't want to lose the specialness of their own lineage. Joining a larger group and standardizing stuff they might fell they get lost in the mix. Or if they try to combine all Taiji for example into one standard form (which China has done) the characteristics of each lineage don't mix well and you have one large mess.
So I see more problems than solutions. Like I said, if only those legendary guys were still around, I don't see that happening.
Your example of boxing is good but the sweet science has a very limited number of techniques and principles (here Wing Chun is similar) which is easier to standardize. The curricula of some CMAs are too large for that, depending on lineages.
In our lineage, our experience is important to the end result. We can't put everyone in a mold and get the same result. So being principally based our lineage allows you to change the system to work for you. Others have disagreed with me and said we should all strive to be like our sifu as much as possible. Others and I say that, if we copy our sifu, we will either be 100% like them or less(probably less), but will never surpass them. Also we lose our identity that way. That's kind of similar to Jeet Kune Do or MMAs philosophy.
I have one friend who's had dealings with my lineage and wasn't impressed. I changed his mind. He still has his opinions, I'm just the exception.
Some people are afraid of being lumped together in one bad group through association. I am not my lineage or my system for that matter. In the beginning I hated that people lumped me together with other lineages or one system for all that's concerned. It made me mad. Once I accepted that that's how some people think, it got easier for me. I started nodding and stopped arguing. Then I just let them touch hands with me. When I feel different to them, they start to ask me questions and a dialog starts to open. Then they change their minds about me and don't lump me together with others they've met from my lineage or system.
I can only hope to change one person at a time.
I think that's the Chinese way, customizing something and adding your own stuff into it. Otherwise there wouldn't be so many lineages. That might not be just a Chinese way, but the natural way.
Sorry for being long winded, bored at work!
Last edited by erniewong
on Sat Jan 12, 2013 8:23 am, edited 1 time in total.