29 January 2009

Eye of the tiger

Silat, an esoteric martial art steeped in Sufi mysticism, is gaining disciples in the Middle East. Rasha Elass sets out to channel her inner warrior.

Cikgu Yahya al Am dons a black suit with emblems and a triangular head cloth called a tongat. He makes fists with his hands and presses them to the floor, gazing downwards, then begins reciting verses from the Quran in silence. He is about to begin a training session for his disciples in the little known combat art of Silat, possibly the only martial art in the world that has Muslim roots.

Silat means “connection” in Arabic, as in the connection between God and worshipper, and is a fundamental concept of Sufism. It was developed over centuries by Sufi masters in the Melayu Archipelago, which embraced Islam through trade with Arabs and Persians and later through the migration of Chinese Muslims. Cikgu is the title given to a master in Silat.

The martial art consists of strenuous kicks, punches and an acrobatic routine alongside full-contact “deadlocks” that can reduce the most stubborn opponent to a submissive standstill. Advanced training involves half a dozen different swords, knives and sticks.

Silat also has a strong meditative element, with dance moves meant to distract and confuse the opponent during battle. “It’s called Bunga. It’s a way of being,” says Cikgu al Am, a fourth-degree black belt and the only Silat master certified to teach the discipline in the Arab world.

“Bunga means flower. The point is to look as beautiful as a flower when performing Bunga. But just like the majestic tiger, the graceful warrior turns fierce in a split second. Silat encapsulates the spirit of the tiger.

“The tiger watches its prey with intelligence. He doesn’t attack a herd of gazelles all at once and make them run off, nor does he sit and wait. The Silat warrior sees an opponent as prey, but fights as if fighting another tiger,” says Cikgu al Am. “So there is this beautiful combat art, and it has Islamic roots. My goal is to spread Silat throughout the Arab world, but only to a select group of people who will not dilute its meaning.”

Cikgu al Am lives in Damascus, Syria, where he is slowly introducing Silat to an exclusive few. Only three out of every 10 enthusiastic beginners who show up for his first class become initiates.

“You can’t choose Silat. Silat chooses you,” he explains.

Indeed, when I first started training with him, he would reveal to me in every lesson one or two highly effective, even potentially deadly, moves until one day I asked him to teach me more.

“When can I advance to the next belt? What about a Silat suit? I want to wear one. Can I go to Malaysia and train there full time?” I inquired.

He explained that before I could advance in Silat, I had to sign a contract, pledge my loyalty to the art and reveal my intentions in wanting to learn the deadly moves.

“I get gung-ho students who show up twice, then ask: ‘When will I be able to attack four people just like in the movies?’” he said. “But those aren’t the ones I want to train. I don’t want to commercialise this art form. And I have to be careful who I train.

“One time I discovered that a student of mine got into a fight and pulled a knife on someone. When he showed up to class again, I asked him to leave and never return. I told him Silat would not welcome him. His soul was corrupt.”

After training in yoga for several years in New York, I felt I had developed a propensity to be quiet, peaceful and, at times, too complacent. “I want to get in touch with my inner warrior,” I told him. I wanted to do what I understood jihad to be: an ongoing, tenacious and spiritual struggle with life’s challenges, or what some call the “human condition”. Feeling that I could also defend myself against a physical attack was an added bonus, I explained.

Cikgu al Am initiated me into Silat Seni Gayong, one of the dominant schools of Silat in Malaysia, under the auspices of the founder Dato Meor Abdul Rahman. When the founder died in 1991, his daughter Siti Kaltoum took over until her death in 2007. Only Dato Meor Abdul Rahman achieved the seventh degree in his black-belt training. For everyone else, the sixth degree is the highest they can achieve.

The school is located just outside Kuala Lumpur, and Cikgu al Am spent four years training there full time. I was now a Gayong, or Silat disciple, and my Cikgu would become more strict with me. I could show up to class only in my Silat suit, with my “empty black” belt, the first belt a Gayong wears, tied properly around my waist. Advanced levels wear “full black” belts, and they have seven degrees. In between there is white, yellow, green and red, also with several levels within them. After 10 months of training, I became a second-order white belt.

“You’re not fully present,” he said one morning early in my training, as we opened the session. To commence, we would read the Fatiha chapter from the Quran once, followed by the Ikhlas chapter 11 times before saying thrice, “peace be upon the Prophet”. The Fatiha and Ikhlas are two of the most commonly read verses, and they are repeated throughout the five daily prayers.

The short opening and closing ceremony aims to focus the mind on the battle at hand, and on breathing and the body.

During the rigorous kicks and punches routine, a Gayong shouts the word “zat”, Arabic for “self” or “essence”. It is a Sufi reference to the Essence of the Divine and a centring mechanism that keeps the warrior focused on the battle.

On a recent visit to Damascus, I watched Cikgu al Am teach a class of advanced male Gayong practitioners on the use of the keris, a famous Malaysian knife with a curvy blade. According to Malaysian war folklore, Melayu fighters used it against Japanese soldiers in the Second World War.

Other weapons include the parang, a machete; simbat suk, a short stick; and tongkat, a long stick. A particularly intriguing sword is the sundang, which splits into two on its end to resemble the famous sword of Ali, the Prophet’s cousin and son-in-law. Unlike most commercially available martial arts, Silat grooms the Gayong practitioner to develop movements on their own.

Black belts cannot advance through the six levels available to them without developing new movements and techniques, which they present before an audience of “faculty” to defend the effectiveness of such techniques, just as a doctoral student must defend a thesis. These new aspects are then introduced into Silat and taught to other students.

“Silat is a way of life. It gives to you and you give back,” says Cikgu al Am.

The Gayong practitioners at the training session have each been with him for at least a year. Their ages vary, but the young ones in particular say their after-school training in the discipline has transformed their lives.

“It took me two months to become attached to it,” says Ousam Hajar, 15. “I’ve noticed that my personality has improved and I interact with people in a better way. I used to be very awkward, especially when speaking to others. But now I speak normally. Silat has been a way of life, and I don’t want to tell my friends about it. It’s my private thing.”


28 January 2009

Silat in "Ransan"

Budding cinematographer Raja Mukhriz Raja Ahmad Kamaruddin or better known as Raja Mukhriz is following the footsteps of his mentor, award-winning cinematographer-director Bade Hj Azmi, to take the director's chair. Mukhriz, recently bestowed Best Cinematographer at the 21st Malaysian Film Festival (FFM 21) for his outstanding work in Syamsul Yusof's "Evolusi KL Drift", is ready for his upcoming mega project "Ransan", due for filming this 10 November 2008.

To our surprise, Mukhriz dispelled all rumours about the selection of ace star Farid Kamil as the lead when he revealed that a contractual agreement cannot be reached between both parties. The chosen replacement is the hunky Jehan Miskin, deemed fit to play Jingga, one of the eight main characters in "Ransan", a concept resembling the "Lord Of The Ring" franchise.

Speaking via telephone to Cinema Online, the first time director explained: "I decided to make a movie started when my close friends and Bade Hj Azmi, (who is also the executive producer) kept on motivating me. Of course, my passion is cinematography but I don't see any harm in trying out something new, especially if the chance is right before me".

"Ransan" which centres on the traditional Malay martial art of silat, also contains Japanese manga influences.

Mukhriz elaborated: "It's not a typical martial arts flick. It's presented in a different approach, whereby the silat in this movie doesn't involve the usage of keris as we emphasise more on bodily movement. I drew references from Wilson Yip's "Dragon Tiger Gate", Wachowski brothers' "Matrix" and "Fight Club". It'll involve brutal fights and a lot of blood. To me, "Ransan" can be described as the local reflection of such movies".

As to why he is going for such an ambitious and aggressive approach for his first movie, the future husband of actress Sharifah Shahora admitted that he's a big fan of those flicks and has been thinking of making something similar for a long time.

"Despite the possible censorship, I don't want to limit my creativity. We don't know until we try. I will deliver my work accordingly and let the authorities decide," explained Mukhriz.

"Ransan" is poised to be an action-packed adventure about a warrior city called Ransan. Headed by a fearsome leader named Indera Ilani (Nasir Bilal Khan), it was invaded by a group of villains led by Kalam Jagat (Ramli Hassan), leaving Indera dead. Eight years later, Indera's son, Bayu (Aaron Aziz) returns for revenge.

"Ransan" is also likely to see the line up of local big names such as Sharifah Amani, singer Atilia and Shoffi Jikan. The silat rehearsal for the cast is in progress at the Green Hornet studio in Bandar Tasik Permaisuri, Cheras under the guidance of former silat exponent, Komeng.

Shooting will involve the locale of Gunung Helang, Perak. "Ransan" is to be produced by Merah Maya Motion Pictures with a budget of RM 1.6 million.

Written by Wahiduzzaman
Sourced from http://www.cinema.com.my/news/news.aspx?search=2008.ransan_2911

23 January 2009

Nigel Sutton: Practising diverse arts in unity

Sifu Nigel Sutton is a remarkable martial artist and an even more remarkable human being. His life reads like a legend who travels the seven seas to drink from every fountain of knowledge.

His journey has taken him from his native England all the way to China and now to Malaysia, where he resides, taking in martial knowledge from every source he can find.

I met him almost a decade ago in my capacity as a journalist at SENI BELADIRI magazine and found that over the years, even as his wisdom grows, his even-tempered nature has not. His humility belies the fact that he has been a martial arts teacher for most of his life, and has more martial accolades under his belt than many of us have thought achievable.

Studying various Chinese and Melayu arts should have made him the perfect ambassador between the Chinese and the Melayu in Malaysia. Unfortunately, no one has realised his importance thus far. I still hope that can change.

In the meantime, he has put to shame true-blue Melayu by studying and writing a book on silat titled Silat Tua: The Malay Dance of Life. During a time when many Melayu are ashamed to call silat their own, an Englishman arrives and tells what we're missing.

My only regret is that I wasn't the first to interview him for Silat Melayu: The Blog. However, I promise our readers that this will happen soon. Until then, I present to you the following interview with him, sourced from The Combat Journal, an online martial arts magazine.

Please tell us of your martial arts background.
I started training in martial arts in 1973 when I was thirteen years old. It was the year that Bruce Lee passed away and the year the Enter the Dragon was released. It was also the year that David Carradine’s Kung Fu was first shown on British TV.

The first art I studied was karate and I continued to practice various different styles of karate until 1979 when I first started taijiquan. In the years since I have practiced a number of different Chinese arts as well as several systems of Silat Melayu and most recently Eskrima De Campo JDC-IO.

I have been fortunate over the last thirty years of my martial arts journey to have lived and trained in China, Malaysia and Singapore as well as having trained in Hong Kong, Taiwan, and the Philippines.

When were you introduced to Silat and Chen Man Chings Tai chi?
My first exposure to Zhengzi (Cheng style) taijiquan came after I had returned from living and working in China in 1985. My teacher Mr. Huang Jifu regarded Zhengzi taijiquan as being a kind of martial arts postgraduate study. It was at his recommendation that I went to Singapore and met Tan Ching Ngee Shifu. I was fortunate enough to become an initiated disciple of Tan Shifu and that started me on my study of Zheng Manqing’s art.

I must point out, however, that the Zheng style that I study is that practiced in the Nanyang region (Southeast Asia) which seems to me quite different from other manifestations of the style. The main difference being that in southeast Asia the art is regarded as being primarily a fighting art and not the kind of old people’s therapy which it is often regarded as in other parts of the world.

In 1992 I moved to Malaysia to further my practice of Malaysian Zhengzi taijiquan and it was here that I met my first Silat teacher, Guru Azlan Ghanie. It is safe to say that without Guru Azlan the world of Malaysian Silat would have remained closed to me.

Who were your primary instructors of Silat and Tai chi?
As far as Zhengzi taijiquan is concerned I am a disciple of Masters Tan Ching Ngee, Lee Bian Lei, Lau Kim Hong and Ho Ah San. I am also a disciple in baguazhang and xingyiquan of Master Gao Jiwu of Beijing.

In Silat I trained first with guru Azlan Ghanie and then with guru Mohammed Hasyim and finally with Guru Zainal Abidin.

Which are the different styles of Silat that you were exposed to in Malaysia and what are their special characteristics?

The styles of Silat I have trained in are Silat Melayu Keris Lok Sembilan, Silat Lian Padukan, Silat Embo, Silat Harimau Jawa, Silat Sendeng Tok Nayan and Silat Tua Yawi.

Lok Sembilan is a traditional system having its origins in the courts of the Melayu sultans. It is initially, primarily based on the use of the keris but also covers empty hand fighting and the use of a wide variety of weapons.

Lian Padukan is what might be termed a kuntau system in that its usage is direct and efficient without any flowery movements. Its history is traced back to Arabic origins, passed through Yunan Province in China and finally to Johor in Malaysia.

Silat Embo is an art that reflects its place of origin. Founded in Pulau Pinang it has Thai, Burmese, Chinese, Indian and Melayu influences.

Silat Tua Yawi has its roots in the Melayu area of South Thailand and is a tari or dance-based system. All of the essential combat concepts and theories are expressed and practiced in free-form solo dance and the two-person fighting exercise known as pulut.

Is there a fundemental difference between the Silat practised in Malaysia compared to Indonesia?
I cannot comment on this as I have never practiced Indonesian silat; however I do not believe that there can be any major differences as the cultural context in which the arts have grown is similar.

Have you been exposed to Kuntao and Wing Chun in Malaysia?
Both Lian Padukan and Silat Embo are systems which might be termed kuntau. Kuntau is the Hokkien Chinese term for martial arts and as such I have direct experience of one form namely wuzuquan (Five Ancestors Boxing) which is a Hokkien style that I studied under Master Tan Swoh Theng.

In its theory and practice Lian Padukan is very similar to Wing Chun even sharing one of its most important oral teachings: datang disambut, balik diturut which loosely translated means when he comes invite him in and when he goes send him on his way. This is the same as the Wing Chun teaching of “Lai liu, qu song”.

Although there are some Wing Chun schools in Malaysia have never been fortunate enough to have had any contact with them.

Is there a spiritual dimension in the silat that you practice?
There is indeed. Whilst modern day silat is firmly rooted in the spiritual values of Islam, in the Silat Tua Yawi tradition the influence of the previous animist, Hindu and Buddhist phases of the art’s evolution is recognized and encapsulated in the system’s training and practices.

Guru Zainal Abidin’s system does not allow him to pass his art on to anyone who does not have a belief in a Supreme Being. The focus in Silat Tua Yawi is on the essence of belief and spirituality rather than adherence to a spiritual “brand name”.

Indeed all of my teachers in all of the arts I have studied have been men with a strong spiritual foundation and their morality and humanity has underpinned the arts they have taught me.

In Silat Tua Yawi there are specific spiritual practices, without which the art is incomplete.

Who are the leading Tai Chi masters in Malaysia?
In Malaysia there are many excellent Tai Chi masters. In our style leading Masters include Masters Lau Kim Hong, Lee Bian Lei and Xu Shu Song (Koh Ah Tee).

Is there a combative aspect to Chen Man Ching's Tai Chi and if so, which teacher stresses this aspect?
Zhengzi taijiquan as it is taught in Malaysia is all about fighting. The Masters such as Yue Shu Ting and Lu Tong Bao who established the art here fought and won many challenge matches against all styles. Thus you will find that all teachers who come from the lineages of these two masters stress the practical martial aspects of the art.

How was your training under Master Mohammed Hasyim?
Haji Hasyim is a charismatic teacher and the time I spent training with him was very special for me. The atmosphere in his gelanggang (training area) is supercharged and the students really like to fight.

I was honoured to be the first non-Melayu to be allowed to undergo the khatam test. In fact I was only the ninth person to do this under Guru Hasyim. It was a tremendous challenge mentally, physically and spiritually.

What was your training like with professor Olavidas in the De campo system in the Phillipines?
Manong Eric Olavides is an extremely skilled martial artist and a true gentleman. He is truly a master of his art and his accuracy, speed and power have to be seen (and felt) to be believed.

Training with Manong Eric is often one on one and he allows no deviation from his extremely high standards. Although such training can be exhausting it is also very rewarding as Manong Eric pours out information.

I particularly like the De Campo JDC-IO system because it is based on the same principles that I have learnt in Zhengzi taijiquan and Manong Eric epitomizes the kind of martial artist I would like to become.

What are some of the similarities and differences of escrima to silat?
Of course I cannot speak for all systems of silat or eskrima but the one thing that I have noticed in all the styles that I practice is that they share the same principles and use of the body to develop maximum speed and power. The fact that they might appear very different belies the underlying similarities. Indeed this is why I continue to practice the different styles that I do because to me they are, despite superficial difference, in essence the same.

Has your personal martial art changed over the years?
In some ways yes because as I get older I have to look at what the arts I practice have to offer for the “more mature” exponent. This is one of the things I like about silat, the fact that the art encompasses practices which allow the older practitioner to maintain their edge.

I feel that I have been blessed to have enjoyed a martial arts career where the Chinese saying “When the time is right the teacher will appear” has proved to be true. Where I am now on the martial path is exactly where I want to be.

What is the philosophical basis for your training?
At this point on the path I want to explore what exactly is natural movement for me. By this I mean that as human beings we are all gifted by the Creator, Nature, the Dao, whatever you want to call it, with certain innate abilities and skills. I want to try to explore and realize these as best I can. To that end the system or style is not so important; to use a cliché it’s the journey not the destination.

What are the most important points in tai chi?
One of my teachers says that tai chi is simple; one yin, one yang and turn the waist! This together with “song” the state of alert relaxation of body, mind and spirit that we strive for, these are the most important.

I have been taught that some of the important parts of the body to concentrate on when practicing tai chi is yung chuan, tan tien, bai hui, han ch'uan ba bei, gua, lao gong and tai yuan. please explain to us the importance of these parts.
All of these are important. The yongquan points are where we connect to the energy of the earth, the source of our root if you like. The Dantian corresponds to the body’s centre of balance and it is the point from where all our movement in tai chi originates. It is also at the centre of our “core” muscles which provide us with a great source of power.

The bai hui is our connection with Heaven and provides the upward tendency which balances and complements the downward pull of gravity. By emphasizing this point you enhance the body’s agility and speed.

Han xiong babei is a teaching designed to enable the rib cage to best protect the internal organs and also to ensure that the power of the back may be used to the best effect.

The kua, which correspond roughly to the hips are vital in both maintaining the root and facilitating the use of full body power.

Lao gong and taiyuan are both points which an awareness of and focus on enable the exponent to make the best use of the body’s sensitivity and ability to react to any external stimulus.

In truth there are many other points on the body and teachings related to their efficient use which are also important but we can synthesise their importance into the development of ting jing (tactile sensitivity), dong jing (the effective use of ting jing) hua jing (neutralizing energy) and fa jing (expelling energy).

With the development of these skills, energies or powers, then you can realize teachings such as “One part moves, all moves”, “Give up yourself and follow others”, as well as acquiring the ability to “stick, connect, adhere and follow”. While of this might sound somewhat esoteric these teachings are all firmly based in concrete physical skills.

That is the wonder of arts such as tai chi, that all of the most marvelous skills are truly normal and human and thus attainable by all who receive proper teaching and train diligently and intelligently.

It is true to say that there are no secrets in any martial art, the only secret is hard work!

What is your teaching methodology?
I believe based on my experience with the amazing teachers I have met and trained with that the martial arts are powerful transformational tools. They enable exponents to enhance their lives, to formulate and achieve goals and to be a positive influence on those around them.

As a teacher it is my responsibility to find the best method for giving the student not what they want but what they need. In order to do this I have to be able to identify to the best of my ability what it is and how best to go about meeting their requirements. This is something that I cannot do alone and I rely heavily on the experience of my teachers and the lineages that they are a part of.

What are your future goals and aspirations?
The answer to this is simple and yet terribly difficult like the essence of the martial arts themselves. I want to preserve, protect and continue the systems that I study and teach, so as to live up to the responsibility passed to me by my teachers.

In life we are truly blessed if we can find our path and that I have been able to do so is something for which I am eternally grateful.

20 January 2009

Silat Cekak Hanafi: No qualms to help Gaza

KUALA LUMPUR - Pertubuhan Seni Silat Lincah Malaysia's offer to despatch their members to assist the Palestinian people has seen Persatuan Seni Silat Cekak Ustaz Hanafi Malaysia (PSSCUHM) also leaning in the same direction.

PSSCUHM's principal, Marwi Latif says that their members can be drafted immediately if the government coordinates the assistance program.

"We have qualms to assist. If requested, our national organisation is always ready to help serve there (Gaza)," he said when Kosmo! Ahad met him here yesterday.

Bagaimanapun, Marwi realises the risks and procedures that hamper their travel to serve in that troubled territory.

He said that although not in Gaza, but PSSCUHM has already begun collections through their Gaza Fund which was launched since the beginning of the latest Israeli attacks on the Palestinians.

Sourced and translated from: http://www.kosmo.com.my/kosmo/content.asp?y=2009&dt=0118&pub=Kosmo&sec=Negara&pg=ne_01.htm

19 January 2009

NSTP Fund for Gaza: RM3,000 in just 30 mins

Silat Cekak Ustaz Hanafi Malaysia vice-president Amruddin Buang (left), grand master instructor Marwi Latiff (third from left) and acting president Md Nasir Md Arshad (fourth from left) presenting a mock cheque to NSTP representative Rina De Silva.

KUALA LUMPUR: Silat Cekak Ustaz Hanafi Malaysia raised RM3,050 in 30 minutes yesterday for the NSTP Fund for Gaza.

The money was collected from 150 members attending the association's instructors' day annual celebration in Ampang Jaya yesterday. A donation box labelled "Tabung Palestine" was passed around to members before a presentation.

The presentation of a mock cheque was made at the NSTP office later in the afternoon. The association's acting president Md Nasir Md Arshad said: "We teach our members to be caring and not to forget their responsibilities to those outside the association.

"We don't believe in fighting. We teach self-defence to avoid fighting. Fighting is not the way to settle issues."

The NSTP Fund for Gaza will run until Feb 7. To contribute, members of the public and organisations can do any of the following:- Bank in or transfer funds to Maybank account number 514105-320501 under the name NSTP Fund for Gaza;- Write a cheque made out to the NSTP Fund for Gaza and send it to NSTP, 31, Jalan Riong, 59100, Kuala Lumpur; or- Make cash donations at the cashier, NSTP, 31, Jalan Riong, Kuala Lumpur or at NSTP branch offices nationwide.


18 January 2009

Al Fatihah - Pak Muslim passes away

Al Fatihah

Pak Muslim Haji Nordin, guru utama of Silat Kalimah Amin has passed away today in the afternoon. He will be buried tomorrow morning in Nilai, Negeri Sembilan.

I first met Pak Muslim several years ago when I was the editor of SENI BELADIRI magazine. I interviewed him for the cover story and found his life an interesting one. He studied directly under Mahaguru Yahya Said and had an innovative approach to developing Silat Kalimah.

He began his life in Silat Kalimah under Pak Guru Redzuan Long's tutelage, which saw him gaining the affectionate title of Champion Instructor. Later, he continued his studies with guru Redzuan's master, Mahaguru Yahya Said when he moved to Sungai Petani.

As a result of organisational issues, he was forced to reregister the Silat Kalimah state chapter in Negeri Sembilan as Persatuan Seni Silat Kalimah Amin as the principal of that organisation.

Another star is snuffed, taking all his years of knowledge and experience with him. We will miss him. Al Fatihah.

Original Article by Mohd Nadzrin Wahab

17 January 2009

Blog refocusing

Salam hormat everyone,

For those of you who still visit this blog, thank you for your support. As of today, I will no longer be posting videos and event announcements on the blog. Any interesting silat videos and events will be placed at SilatMelayu.Com (SMC) to reinforce its role as a social networking site.

As such, I will also cease updating my blog Silat Melayu Videos at http://silatvids.blogspot.com.

Silat Melayu: The Blog will continue updating on the latest news on silat in Malaysia and source or write interesting articles for you to read.

If you have any events you want to publicise, all you have to do is register for membership at http://silat-melayu.ning.com and post it yourself, or email me at webmaster@silatmelayu.com and I will put it up.

For now, the URL of SMC shall remain as above until we make the change to http://silatmelayu.com.

Again, thank you all for your support and I hope you enjoy your time here and at SMC.


Original Article by Mohd Nadzrin Wahab

16 January 2009

GM Prof Dr Zahalan Man

Grandmaster Zahalan bin Man was born on January 14, 1947 in Arau, State of Perlis, Malaysia. His involvement in martial arts spans over 53 years.

He was introduced to Silat martial arts at the age of seven (7) in an attempt to keep him occupied since he was a hyperactive child. At the age of nine (9), he received his Junior Black Belt and was able to knock out bigger, heavier and more aggressive exponents in local junior challenge championships.

For the next ten (10) years he moved to different schools learning and perfecting his martial art competencies and prowess while accepting challenges from different grandmasters.

In 1967, at the age of twenty (20), he enrolled in Silat Kalam Ikatan Utama Malaysia and received tutelage from the late Grandmaster Pak Guru Haji Yahya Said.

Silat Kalam originated from the times of Prophet Muhamad where the art was taught as a form of being defensive in the face of aggression and was practized by Muslim missionaries.

Silat Kalam came to the shores of Malaysia through the first Islamic missionary Sheikh Tajrid who was the trade emissary from Arabian peninsular to South East Asia, during the time of the prophet.

Grandmaster Zahalan Man introduced the lethal martial art of Silat to Army Generals, Parlimentarians, celebrities and royalties in the 1970's and inherited Silat Kalam when he was appointed as the 40th Generation Grandmaster of Silat Kalam Ikatan Utama Malaysia, upon the transition of his teacher the late Pak Guru Haji Yahya Said.

Over the last 30 years, Grandmaster Zahalan Man had personally taught Silat Kalam to over forty thousand from Malaysia and neighbouring countries.

In recognition of his works, Camden University, USA had conferred a honorary PhD in Islamic Martial Arts in 2005. In the same year, the Head of Family Sokeship Council (WHFSC) had granted the recognition of GRANDMASTER OF THE YEAR in Florida, USA. Grandmaster Zahalan bin Man also sits as a council member in WHFSC.

The United Nations NGO, International Association of Educators for World Peace (IAEWP) had appointed Grandmaster Zahalan bin Man as the National Chancellor of Malaysia for a two year period to propogate United Nations Peace Charter in Malaysia. In 2007, he was elevated as the International Special Consultant of IAEWP, one of the thirty council members worldwide.

IAEWP has national charters in about a hundred countries since 1967. The IAEWP also awarded Grandmaster Zahalan bin Man, its prestigious DIPLOMA OF HONOUR in 2007 in Alabama. In 2008, he become the WORLD PEACE AMBASSADOR of IAEWP ( NGO-UN ) and received the prestigious Diploma of Leadership.

In 2007, Grandmaster Zahalan bin Man, founded the MALAYSIAN MARTIAL ARTS GRANDMASTER ASSOCIATION and the association became the national affiliate of WHFSC. For his continued contributed to the martials arts fraternity, he was conferred CONTINUED EXCELLENCE AWARD by the WHFSC in 2007.

In 2008, the WHFSC confered the HISTORICAL MEMBER AWARD in San Antonio, Texas, USA.

Grandmaster Zahalan bin Man is also an author and written three (3) books on the Goverment and Politics of Malaysia. In 1992, he was the editor of his own successful weekly tabloid “Warisan Nasional”. His latest book on DAULAT UMNO, a reference guide on Malaysian ruling party has been named as the Reference Guide of the future generations by the Prime Minister of Malaysia.

In 2007, Jupiter Entertainment, USA filmed Silat Kalam Malaysia for its documentary “Human Weapon” @ Discovery Channel.

In 2008, he gained his non academic PhD in Islamic Martial Arts from Wisconsin International University. Grandmaster Zahalan bin Man was been appointed as an Adjunct Professor of Islamic Martial Arts and Islam Hadhari at Wisconsin University, USA for its Asian Campus in Malaysia.

Sourced from http://www.pikum.org.my/grandmaster-biography.html

15 January 2009

Prayers requested for Nur Iman

Silat Melayu: The Blog would like to ask for the prayers of all our visitors for the son of our friend Cikgu Nor Azlan Abdul Wahid of Silat Kuntau Tekpi, Nur Iman who is currently warded at Ampang Puteri hospital for food poisoning.

Iman, as he's affectionately known was diagnosed with food poisoning for the last 2 days.

We at SMTB wish him and his family all the best and get well soon.

14 January 2009

History's Strongest Disciple Kenichi

Thanks to MadMike for sending this in (I didn't know you still read the blog). When I opened it up, I couldn't stop smiling until I reached the third page. Click on each picture to enlarge. Enjoy!

Click here: http://www.onemanga.com/Historys_Strongest_Disciple_Kenichi/184/06/ for a fairly accurate description of Pencak Silat by the characters.

13 January 2009

Deadly Weapons Used in Silat Melayu

The Keris
In the world of the Silat Melayu, the keris (a wavy bladed dagger or knife) is the principal weapon of defence and offence. It is a deadly weapon unique to the Malay world, and in the centuries past, it was the dreaded weapon of the Melayu, and normally carried around by the adult men especially for self-defence purpose.

Those were the days when carrying a keris was a normal thing, akin, in the western world, to the days of the cowboys when carrying pistols were normal and rife.

In the old days, a keris once taken out of its sheath must “taste" blood, as they say, and if not the enemy’s, the owner's blood. So, it is not a plaything - it is a deadly weapon to be respected. Some say that the blade of the keris, to be effective, must be laced with arsenic, so that once the enemy is stabbed, his days are numbered. Those were during the old days.

Nowadays, however, the keris is sometimes regarded as a status symbol only, with elaborate designs and expensive stones embedded. It is nowadays worn by the groom during traditional Melayu weddings, and as ceremonial dressing and ornamental accompaniments by high public officials and royalties, during traditional ceremonies and public occasions.

Many Melayu families today keep the ancestral keris, which had been handed or passed down from their ancestors and from one generation to another as family heirlooms and as, perhaps, a memento of their ancestors' glorious and rich past.

The Mystique of the Keris
The keris nowadays can be bought at shops and malls selling traditional Melayu costumes and products. However as a weapon for use in a fight or battle, not just any keris will do for the owners. To ensure that the keris is compatible with the owner, and would give him certain mystical, and perhaps supernatural, powers, the keris must be custom-made and molded based on certain calculations and measurements of the owner’s body.

For instance, the number of waves for the blade of the keris is based on such measurements, and therefore you might find that a keris might be longer or shorter than normally expected.

As the keris is made based on the owner’s requirements, specific measurements and temperaments, its weight and length would also be dependent on the calculations made, to ensure its compatibility with the owner.

And to ensure invulnerability and to bring good luck to the owners, ancient iron implements found or deliberately sought were re-smelted and used in the manufacture of the blades of the keris. In fact, in the olden days, no keris was really lucky (or “bertuah” in Bahasa Melayu), unless it was at least in part, composed of a prehistoric iron implement.

Preservation of the Keris
In the old Melayu world, the owner of the keris, in order to preserve its effectiveness, would carry out certain rites or prayers, and it is usual to “smoke” the keris with kemenyan (fragrant incense) and to cleanse or wipe it with the limau kasturi (Citrus microcarpa, a lime fruit) juice, every Friday night.

And a keris is never sharpened after it is made and given to the owner, not even, as they say, after it had been used to stab opponents. Therefore it is unlike the work implements such as the machete, knives or other sharp object used as utensils for work, which has to be sharpened after use.

Shape of the Keris
Normally the handle of a keris has elaborate carvings as the hilt and the normal creature carving is birdlike called the jawa demam. The blade of the keris is wavy and has different numbers of waves depending on the owner’s criteria.

From the structure of the handle, we can see that the keris is used only to be held in one hand. It cannot, and is not meant to be held by two hands unlike the big swords of the western world.

The usage of the keris is therefore in consonance with silat movements where the hand is used in combat with or without the keris in hand. A keris in hand would however be an added advantage.

The sheath (or 'home') of the keris is also an art form and a beauty to behold. It is normally made of wood with silver or iron coverings at its mouth, and mostly with carved designs.

Most Famous Keris
Various names based on their origin and owners are given to the keris. “Keris melela” is a variation of the keris, which in the old days in Pahang, was used as a weapon by the Melayu of Pekan (a town).

Like pets, owners of kerises often give names to their keris, as a sign of affection and respect, and, if they have a few as is normal then, to distinguish between the different kerises they own.

One of the most famous kerises that has been recorded in the Malay history books is named “Taming Sari”. It is said that with this keris, Hang Tuah became invulnerable or invincible, and he defeated all opponents with this keris in his hand.

During his battle with Hang Jebat, the Taming Sari was in fact in the possession of Hang Jebat, as he had taken it during Hang Tuah’s exile. Hang Tuah was only able to defeat and killed Hang Jebat only after he had tricked Hang Jebat into exchanging their kerises. The story of this fight is depicted in the Malay epic “Hikayat Hang Tuah”.

Crime Rounds & Execution of Criminals
In the old days (in the 1800s), in Pahang, capital offences included treason, murder, amok, arson and even adultery. The old version of the modern police force in Pahang is the “juak-juak" or “hamba raja”, of the Bendahara’s (perhaps equivalent to the Prime Minister nowadays) police, who usually went around apprehending criminals armed with a short keris (“keris pendek”) and a spear.

There were different methods of execution in the 1800s and early 1900s in Pahang. The most common way was death by the keris. The convicted criminal was stabbed with the long execution keris provided by the Bendahara – the famous keris penyalang of Koris (now said to be part of the Pahang State regalia). Although it sounds gory, it was said that death by the keris was actually one of the more humane forms of execution practised then.

For instance, in those days an amok is to be stabbed by the hurling of javelins. A woman convicted of adultery was strangled to death, and crimes involving betrayal of trust required the criminal to be crucified and the body thrown to the sea.

And criminals were also subject to other forms of capital punishment such as through drowning the criminal by attaching stones to the body, or tying his neck and dragging him in the river using a boat until he drowns.

Other Weapons Used in Silat Melayu
While the keris is the chief weapon of the Malays, there are other knifes or blades used in silat, such as the badik, tekpi, kerambit, parang, sundang, sabit (sickle), lembing and also sticks.

Parang or Golok Pahang (or Pahang machete) is a weapon made by the Pekan people of Pahang. In the old days Pahang was famous for the manufacture of fine machetes or golok and it was recorded in history books (in late 1490s) that Sultan Mahmud of Melaka sent a Pahang machete as one of his presents to the Pasai sultan.

The “lading” is a weapon used by the exponents of Silat Cekak Hanafi, which originated from the Malaysian state of Kedah Darul Aman. The shape of the lading is like a meat butcher’s knife with a short handle and a wide and sharp blade.

The lading however is used only for defence purposes, and not for attack. It is consonant with the philosophy of Silat Cekak Hanafi that its martial arts form is only for self-defence purposes and that also includes the use of its main and unique weapon, the lading. The “lading” is given as an honor and award to those Silat Cekak Hanafi exponents who have reached the highest level of the silat art.

And just like the keris whose effectiveness to the owner would depend on it being customised based on certain body measurements, the lading is also measured and custom-made based solely on the person using it. Therefore it could not be handed down as a hereditary weapon to the son, for example, as its effectiveness is compromised.

Uses of Weapons in Silat
The use of weapons in Silat, unless the art is specifically to teach the use of the particular weapon, is taught by the master to his students only at the highest level of the silat. This is to ensure that the student has mastered at least the basic techniques and movements of the silat before he is taught the use of weapon which is more difficult and perhaps more dangerous.

But most of all, the use of a weapon is taught to a student when the master has known the student intimately, his character, temperament, etc., and has assured himself that the student will not misuse or abuse the knowledge for evil gains.

So only those students who have gained the complete trust and faith of the master in that they will use the knowledge for good intentions and purposes only are taught the highest level of the weapons’ techniques and movements.

Written by Mohd Yamin
Sourced from http://www.pahang-delights.com/deadly-weapons-silat.html

12 January 2009

SilatMelayu.Com 2.0

Assalamualaikum and salam hormat,

Welcome to SMC 2.0. For those who have emailed me asking why we never got around to upgrading the website, thank you for the concern.

The obvious question for many, is why have SMC when we already have Silat.TV? Well, to be fair, SMC started first, but never really got off the ground. The original idea for SMC was for it to be a website gathering together the best information about silat online promoting silat from a Malaysian perspective.

Since then, a lot of blogs have appeared with good content on different Malaysian styles, driven by members of those styles. We feel that SMC's role in that area has diminished slightly. To avoid competition with these sites, we have decided to go the way of Facebook, MySpace and of course, Silat.TV, social networking.

Thus, SMC now stands for Silat Melayu Community, hopefully a welcome change to all. What's different between SMC and Silat.TV? We share some of the same members, but SMC aims to have a more religious and cultural approach where we explain the role that Islam and the Melayu culture plays in defining silat, as most Malaysian pesilat already acknowledge.

We are not out to proselytize, but we do want to present a more accurate picture of silat as we've inherited it, not nominally how it's being practised. As some can already witness, modern living has forced silat to abandon quite a bit of its roots, producing simply fighters instead of champions of right.

Some might disagree with our views, but this is what we intend for the site. You are welcome to stay and see what we truly mean by this. Thus, all content that we put up (not the members) will tend to portray a more cultural angle. We will have content on silat music, dress, adat and adab, kebatinan, medicine, etc as long as we can find authentic sources.

So, do enjoy your stay here and email me at webmaster@silatmelayu.com if you have ANY comments for improvement.

Mohd Nadzrin Wahab
SMC Webmaster

Original Article by Mohd Nadzrin Wahab

09 January 2009

Mahaguru Omardin Haji Mauju - Founder of Silat Lincah

Haji Omardin bin Mauju was born on 29th May 1941 in Puchong and was raised Kampung Puah, Gombak. This true blue Selangor born suffered greatly in his youth because of polio induced paralysis, a condition which was difficult to treat at the time.

However, the pain did not stop him from constantly searching for someone who could cure him of it until he met a silat master, Syed Abdul Rahman at Pulau Besar in Melaka. He advised Omardin to study Silat Tarah in his efforts to cure his disease. Thus, began Omardin's internal journey in silat.

His interest in silat developed and deepened when he realised his condition showed signs of improvement. However, he was also forced to accept the fact that the damage to his legs would be permanent. Throughout his treatment and silat studies, Omardin was buried to waist level fifteen times on the beach during the full moon.

Omardin faced each test with courage, even though he was still 18 years of age. He studied every silat technique including attacks, blocks and takedowns using his whole body, including his damaged legs. He was fortunate enough to be trained not only by Syed Abdul Rahman but the master was also assisted by seven of his students, Omardin's colleagues in the style.

After four years of numerous tests of Omardin's patience, perseverance and effort in studying Silat Tarah, it was a dream come true for the once incapacitated teenager to finally be appointed as a Guru Muda (Junior Master) at the young age of 22. His successes did not end there as a few months later, after several evaluations and intensive testing by his master, Omardin was appointed as Mahaguru and permitted to teach Silat Lincah by Syed Abdul Rahman.

The status of Mahaguru was not attained without difficulty. Omardin proved that his handicap posed no problems when facing the most intensive of spiritual tests, among them being hacked with a sharp blade, showered in boiling oil and buried in the ground for two days and two nights.
The ceremony to install Omardin as the Mahaguru took place at the tomb (maqam) of Sheikh Ismail Sultan Ariffin in Pulau Besar, Melaka.

In the ceremony, he also received his master's instruments as a symbol of inheriting all of Syed Abdul Rahman's knowledge. Once the ceremony was completed, Omardin was bathed at a well named Perigi Nenek Kebayan and underwent a lime bath at the Makam Tujuh Beradik as a conclusion to the installation.

After concluding his studies with Syed Abdul Rahman, Omardin was entrusted by his master to study from four other masters. To fulfil his wishes, Omardin delved into silat and spiritual studies with Kiyai Haji Nong Lias at Rantau, Negeri Sembilan. Following this, he turned to Wan Alang from Bukit Selambau, Kedah while the third master was Syed Mohammed Al-Qadri and the fourth Tuan Haji Salleh Patani.

He then left for Mekah together with 37 of his instructors to 'confirm' his studies. Upon his return, Silat Lincah began making strides in the local silat scene. With only five of his original students, Omardin established several gelanggang within Selangor and Wilayah Persekutuan.
From then on, Silat Lincah spread far and wide throughout the country until it became a legally registered association, the Pertubuhan Seni Silat Lincah Malaysia (PSSLM).

Omardin has also organised several series of overseas Silat Lincah demonstrations including in Indonesia, Singapura, Thailand, Philippines, Brunei, Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, Pakistan, India and Mekah.

The success of Silat Lincah in spreading its wings internationally began after 4th December 1976, when a World Silat demonstration was organised by PSSLM in Kuala Lumpur. It was after this historic date that two young men, one from England and one from Belgium, Glenn Lobo and Christopher Bogaerts came to Kuala Lumpur to study Silat Lincah. This was the first step for Silat Lincah's overseas invasion.

In the midst of these achievements, Omardin's exhortations began to attract several silat bodies to confederate at a regional ASEAN level. It was even due to his ideas and efforts that the Malaysian National Silat Federation (PESAKA) was established, which has now become the backbone to all silat activities in Malaysia.

Silat Lincah once again made a name for themselves when Omardin and hundreds of his students were involved in producing a film documentary titled One Step Into The Beyond or Selangkah Ke Alam Batin which was not only publicly screened but also opened a new page in the history of Silat Melayu, and was Silat Lincah's ultimate achievement that cemented Omardin as a vanguard of Silat Melayu.


RI set for Martial Arts Games

Indonesia should have reasonably high medal prospects in the pencak silat (the national sport) events at the inaugural Asian Martial Arts Games in Bangkok in April, but a quota system may prevent its fighters from hauling in the medals.

Indonesian Pencak Silat Federation (IPSI) Chairman Oyong Karmayudha has called the contingent to revel in the other sports offered at the Games, which will take place between April 25 and May 9.

"Of course, we have to set high expectations for pencak silat because it is our sport. However, we also have to stay put on the ground due to the Game's quota system," Oyong said on Tuesday.

The Games will feature nine martial arts, including Japanese jujitsu, kurash (Turkish wrestling), muay (Thai boxing), judo, karate, wushu, tae kwon do, kick-boxing, and pencak silat (traditional Indonesian martial arts).

Djoko Pramono, an official of the National Sports Council (KONI) in charge of Olympic Solidarity, said that to avoid possible domination of athletes competing in sports from their country of origin, the Games organizers would apply quota system on a number of the events.

For example, in judo, a participating country is allowed only to join four of seven events, in each the men's and women's categories.

In karate, a competitor can participate in a maximum of four out of seven events in the men's division and three of the five women's events.

The tae kwon do competition will apply a four-from-eight limitation and for pencak silat the maximum allowance will be three-from-six.

Citing the classic problem of funding, Djoko said that Indonesia will not take part in all nine sports.

"We will only send athletes for judo, karate, wushu, tae kwon do and pencak silat. We are not familiar with the rest," he said.

"Each sports federation should submit their list of athletes on Jan. 15," he said.

The quota system is expected to reduce Indonesia's hopes for a medal haul in pencak silat and Oyong said that the team would make a strict policy on the selection of athletes in a bid to enhance the medal prospects.

"During the upcoming national training camp, we will start scrutinizing the athletes, especially in the events that we are going to take part," he said, adding that the team would prioritize those pesilat (fighters) under 25-year-old.

Sourced from http://www.accessmylibrary.com/article-1G1-191754776/ri-set-martial-arts.html

08 January 2009

Stop The Violence

Al Fatihah

Silat Melayu: The Blog is pausing from its normal topic to reach out to fellow Malaysians and pesilat to donate generously to MERCY Malaysia, our medical aid representative currently serving in Palestine.

We are deeply saddened and angered at the wanton destruction of life that the authorities in Israel are perpetrating on our brothers and sisters in Palestine. We condemn such acts of violence towards non-combatants who have nothing to defend themselves with.

Our condolences to those parents who have lost their children, those children who have lost their parents and those who have suffered alone all this while.

We pray that this horror stops or we risk losing our humanity in total.

Please visit MERCY's website here and do your part

Download MERCY's donation form

Original Article by Mohd Nadzrin Wahab

07 January 2009

Indonesia set for Martial Arts Games

Indonesia should have reasonably high medal prospects in the pencak silat (the national sport) events at the inaugural Asian Martial Arts Games in Bangkok in April, but a quota system may prevent its fighters from hauling in the medals.

Indonesian Pencak Silat Federation (IPSI) Chairman Oyong Karmayudha has called the contingent to revel in the other sports offered at the Games, which will take place between April 25 and May 9.

"Of course, we have to set high expectations for pencak silat because it is our sport. However, we also have to stay put on the ground due to the Game's quota system," Oyong said on Tuesday.

The Games will feature nine martial arts, including Japanese jujitsu, kurash (Turkish wrestling), muay (Thai boxing), judo, karate, wushu, tae kwon do, kick-boxing, and pencak silat (traditional Indonesian martial arts).

Djoko Pramono, an official of the National Sports Council (KONI) in charge of Olympic Solidarity, said that to avoid possible domination of athletes competing in sports from their country of origin, the Games organisers would apply quota system on a number of the events.

For example, in judo, a participating country is allowed only to join four of seven events, in each the men's and women's categories.

In karate, a competitor can participate in a maximum of four out of seven events in the men's division and three of the five women's events.

The tae kwon do competition will apply a four-from-eight limitation and for pencak silat the maximum allowance will be three-from-six.

Citing the classic problem of funding, Djoko said that Indonesia will not take part in all nine sports.

"We will only send athletes for judo, karate, wushu, tae kwon do and pencak silat. We are not familiar with the rest," he said.

"Each sports federation should submit their list of athletes on Jan. 15," he said.

The quota system is expected to reduce Indonesia's hopes for a medal haul in pencak silat and Oyong said that the team would make a strict policy on the selection of athletes in a bid to enhance the medal prospects.

"During the upcoming national training camp, we will start scrutinizing the athletes, especially in the events that we are going to take part," he said, adding that the team would prioritize those pesilat (fighters) under 25-year-old.

Sourced from http://old.thejakartapost.com/detailsports.asp?fileid=20090107.V02&irec=1

06 January 2009

Islam Defenders Front recruits 60 volunteers to fight Israeli army

Reacting to nationwide rallies condemning the Israeli military for laying siege to Gaza and the West Bank, the Islam Defenders Front (FPI) has recruited 60 Muslim youths from Jember regency to dispatch as volunteers to fight the Israeli army in Palestine.

"If Muslims are injured and killed it must be revenged. We must help our brothers suffering grievance in the Israeli aggression," chairman of the East Java chapter of FPI Habib Haidar Al Hamid said in his speech to rally volunteers in Jember on Monday.

He said his organisation had recruited to the cause 60 of the 120 young Muslims that had signed a solidarity for Palestine petition.

They are now undergoing what he called "advance training" at a pesantren (Islamic boarding school) in Sumberbaru district having cleared health and performance tests.

Haidar said the volunteers would be deployed as mujahidins and soldiers in the front lines in Gaza to fight Israeli soldiers.

"The haves can donate a part of their wealth but we have only our bodies with which to wage a holy war against the Jewish country," he said.

The chief of the FPI in Jember, Mukmin, who is also director of the pesantren, said a holy war must be volunteer-based. He said it was assumed that all those who joined had secured permission from their families.

When asked by The Jakarta Post if they had permission, the volunteers replied they had, and added that they were ready to die for their Palestinian brothers.

"If you are permitted, go wage the holy war in the path of God," Mukmin told them.

Even if they somehow managed to get into Palestine to fight the Israeli army they would come face to face with some of the most advanced weaponry on the planet, the volunteers will only undergo brief self-defense training locally known as pencak silat (a traditional martial art) before they are dispatched.

The volunteer recruitment has sparked strong widespread criticism, with many saying the would-be soldiers are ill-equipped, unprofessional and may not have any means to communicate on the ground or to endure the weather in the Middle Eastern region.

Such failures were evident last century when equally unprepared Indonesian volunteers were dispatched to Afghanistan to wage holy war.

Recalling the days when Indonesian people drove off the Dutch colonial government with bamboo spears, Hamid said he was optimistic the volunteers would win the war in Gaza and rid the land of Israeli soldiers.

Sourced from http://old.thejakartapost.com/detailnational.asp?fileid=20090107.C07&irec=7

05 January 2009

Persatuan Seni Silat Cekak Pusaka Ustaz Hanafi

Several interested parties have been asking me for updates on the recent Silat Cekak Hanafi leadership crisis which gave birth to a new organisation, Persatuan Seni Silat Cekak Pusaka Hanafi under the guidance of Tuan Guru Md Radzi Haji Hanafi.

Since I'm mostly out of the loop on this one, I can't yet confirm whether they are now a national body, or only exist as state and higher-learning institution level student associations. So, I googled it, and it seems that the latter is true.

I found that the Kelantan branch claims to have been set up here http://schkelantan.blogspot.com/ and their upcoming activity includes an initiation.

The Selangor branch in Serdang, which together with UPM is a traditional stronghold of Tuan Guru Md Radzi also appears active, having held a membership drive and Majlis Potong on the 20th of December. See here: http://sf2721.blogspot.com/2008/12/pengambilan-ahli-baru-silat-cekak.html

In University Malaya, the association recently held a demonstration under the new name, but with the Persatuan Seni Silat Silat Cekak Ustaz Hanafi Malaysia (PSSCUHM) uniforms (although the video I've included here doesn't allow a detailed look to see if there are any changes made).

At the national level, however, the organisation has made a lot of progress, as they held their annual Hari Tenaga Pengajar at Dewan DBKL on the traditional date of 1 Muharram, falling this year on 29th December 2008.

Additionally, it seems the younger-minded movement of Silat Cekak Pusaka Hanafi has more energy and direction than its predecessor. Thus, I wasn't surprised to find this blurb on the Kuala Lumpur Performing Arts Centre website on their latest event, the KLPAC Open Day:

Julian Mokhtar, Azmyl Yunor, Young KL Singers, KL Children's Choir, bellydancers from Sirocco Secret Dance, Kayla Maxey of Flamenco Malaysia, klpac sinfonietta, Indian Cultural Drum Group (Sentul & Jln Ipoh), Persatuan Silat Cekak Pusaka Hanafi and heaps more"

Sourced from http://klpac.com/Welcome.asp?c=whatsonpromotionsview&promoID=77&promocatID=5

If ever anyone questioned whether the group that split off from PSSCUHM could get back on their feet, it looks like 2009 will be their answer.

Original Article by Mohd Nadzrin Wahab

04 January 2009

Silat group wants others not to use its logo

KUALA LUMPUR: The Pertubuhan Silat Seni Gayong Malaysia (PSSGM) has called on silat exponents outside its group to stop using the organisation’s logo for political purposes.

Worried that there might be a repeat of the incident during the Permatang Pauh by-election when a photographer was beaten up during a ceramah, PSSGM’s acting president Adiwijaya Abdullah said the reputation of the organisation was at stake.

Adiwijaya said they were blamed for that incident because those who hit the photographer were wearing the PSSGM’s logo.

“Our organisation does not teach people to be samseng or hitmen. We urge silat exponents and our members to not get involved in anything like this in the coming Kuala Tereng­ganu by-election,” Adiwijaya said at a press conference here yesterday.

He added that what silat exponents outside the PSSGM were doing was only confusing the public, bringing a bad name to the organisation.

Adiwijaya said the organisation was registered in 1963 with the Registrar of Societies and had some 500,000 members around the country.

“Our organisation teaches exponents to be loyal, respect leaders and love the Malay culture. Anything we do is to uphold these beliefs,” he said.

Sourced from The Star (Nation) Sunday, January 4, 2008
With thanks to Pok Nik

03 January 2009

Keris Al-Toir for sale

Ustaz Saiful Muhammad of Pertubuhan Seni Silat Telapak Nusantara Malaysia is currently putting up his keris Al-Toir for sale.

The weapon is almost 20 years old with a 33cm blade and 9 loks. Although the design is obviously Pattani, but the keris was made in Johor by a Bugis empu and carries subtle Bugis influences. The pamor is fine and clearly visible.

The hulu is an avian Tajung design which gives the keris its name, Al-Toir ("bird" in Arabic). The owner reports that the keris has religious significance, which will be explained to the new owner upon transfer of ownership.

The opening price of sale is RM900.00

For more information, please contact Ustaz Saiful at +6019 631 5668 or ustazshifu@senisilat.net