05 February 2005

Fresh approach needed for silat bodies to woo young generation

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 4 (Bernama) -- Traditional martial art organisations have been urged to adopt a fresh approach in terms of training methods in order to attract participation from the younger generation.

Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Najib Tun Razak, when making the call, said the fresh approach was necessary to ensure continued interest in the cultural heritage among the younger generation.

"Otherwise, we will see our silat art dying one by one, especially those silat art which have little following and are seldom heard of," he said when launching the Martial Art Council (MARCIL), here.

He also reminded leaders of silat bodies not to reject elements of science and technology in enriching style and technique of the art so that it could be accepted by the international community as an art of self-defence that was not merely ritual in nature.

He said silat masters should also impart all their skills to the students so that they could be at par or even better than their masters.

"Silat masters should discard the old attitude of not imparting all their skills to the students for fear that their students would be better than them. That is why when the warrior Mat Kilau died, there was no one who could match him because no one had inherited his silat skills," Najib said.

He said besides having the ability to defend oneself from any threat, silat exponents were usually people of good character as they followed religious teachings and were of high morals.

"As such, the silat and martial art organisations with more than four million members formed a strong front in facing social threats," he said.

At the ceremony, Najib heard the pledge of allegiance to the government by representatives of about 130 silat and martial art organisations which were affiliated to MARCIL.

Sourced from http://www.accessmylibrary.com/coms2/summary_0286-18627325_ITM

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