Join 3,501 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


Yellow Bamboo
February 15, 2003 9:57 PM   Subscribe

How would you like to control the entire universe, both what goes within you and what happens with others? As you can imagine when you can knock down attackers from 10 feet away or heal someone dying from something just using your own energy- that is true personal power! Others are skeptical. I think I will hold on to my $19.99. The movies are entertaining, though.
posted by hockeyman (19 comments total)

 
I meant to link the home page for YellowBamboo instad of the "about" page.
posted by hockeyman at 10:06 PM on February 15, 2003


The main criteria is the Yellow Bamboo practitioner must be **serious**

Well, I'm screwed.

For now, Tony Robbins's teeth will stay in his massive jaws. Dang.
posted by y2karl at 10:09 PM on February 15, 2003


Holy crap! That's stuff is dynamite; your foes fall down even before you wave your hands at them!
posted by abez at 10:31 PM on February 15, 2003


"This film is not about religion."

Yes it is. It's a perfect metaphor.
posted by Pretty_Generic at 5:43 AM on February 16, 2003


Randi is a truly great hero. The truth will set you/him/us free.
posted by davidmsc at 7:05 AM on February 16, 2003


I've gotta pipe in with a "me-too" to davidmsc.

This yellowbamboo crap is hardly unique (And when I say that, I don't mean that it is but one of a hundred ways of knocking down an opponent without touching them). There are all sorts of scams all over the world that prey on people's beliefs or insecurities or pride and that could very likely be eliminated if everybody took the time to say "could this be too good to be true."

On the other hand, constantly calling these folks scam artists or slime and calling their followers idiots doesn't serve to foster the type of critical thinking that Randi espouses.
posted by chiheisen at 10:06 AM on February 16, 2003


Randi is a Johnny-One-Note self-promoting publicity whore and in real life you can color me skeptic, for the most part, thank you.

That said, I remember watching the Blair Brothers' Ring Of Fire series for PBS. It was set in Indonesia and there was one brief scene in a segment about a healer, an adept of something similar to Yellow Bamboo, who wadded up a newspaper, threw it on the floor and waved his hands at it--and it burst into flames. I thought at the time It's got to be a trick, but it was impressive.
posted by y2karl at 10:10 AM on February 16, 2003


Oh dear. Back a day and it looks like I' m already contributing to thread hijack.

Randi is a Johnny-One-Note self-promoting publicity whore and in real life you can color me skeptic, for the most part, thank you. -- y2karl

To the extent that Randi sometimes sounds like a broken record, I agree. To the best of knowledge, CSICOP is pretty much as described (schismed on their first attempt to do anything). But this criticism seems a just a wee bit more than is warranted. And it certainly applies just as much to the people that Randi's million dollar challenge is aimed at.

The link you provided speaks only of Project Alpha and comes from the loyal opposition. There are a number of available cliches to describe the relationship between the skeptic/critical thought movement in general and Steve Grenard, et al. But suffice it to say that any character attacks between the two groups are driven more by animosity than by facts or deeds.

But regardless of how nice of people all the players are, the fact remains that this sort of yellow bamboo nonsense is prominent and nobody ever seems to have the guts to walk up to these people and say "prove it."

If I were yellowbamboo, I'd want to prove it. Think of how much more you could make selling the technique if it worked, either to martial artists or assorted armies. I think it's another case of "If it were any good, we'd have heard about it by now."
posted by chiheisen at 10:46 AM on February 16, 2003


Look at the "preparation for defense" movie, and at the guy who doesn't fall down immediately, but gets really close to the "master" before falling down. Notice that he doesn't even react to the guy screaming and doing his kung fu hand motions at him when his back is turned.
posted by Hildago at 11:08 AM on February 16, 2003


never trust a web-borne cult whose webpage doesn't even incorporate proper breadcrumbing tactics.

especially if their testimonials include such gems as

Every level has been amazing and different and I have had many super or extra normal experiences outside the knocking down of people.

and plus, it's bad to use your telepathy to win the lottery, even if you give the proceeds to the poor.
posted by badzen at 6:15 PM on February 16, 2003


Silat is freaky stuff. So is Tai Chi, if you see a true master. There are plenty of quacks out there, plenty of them, and I'm not so sure about "control the entire universe," heh. But I've experienced some freaky things. I'll be glad to talk about them--off-list with anyone else who has experienced them. It's a place you have to have seen for yourself.
posted by Shane at 6:35 PM on February 16, 2003


oh, i agree with the freaky stuff, but as a san soo fighter, i say just break their kneecaps and gouge the eyes, leave the chi manipulation to the guys off in the caves.

plus, no one has ever been able to sucessfully teach that kind of mojo to the masses, and they never will. these guys are full of crap.
posted by badzen at 7:19 PM on February 16, 2003


Heh, badzen, there's a fellow in Ohio trying to teach Kun Tao and Silat to US Special Forces (probably for good pay). The freaky internal stuff. I won't mention his name, though--he's scary! (Eeep!)
posted by Shane at 6:46 AM on February 17, 2003


plus, no one has ever been able to sucessfully teach that kind of mojo to the masses, and they never will.

no one's ever been able to successfully demonstrate that "mojo" to the masses either - or even to a single skeptical witness. The only people who believe this stuff after seeing it are the ones who really strongly believed it before seeing it.

These guys mention the firewalking stuff, which has been shown to be easily explained w/o any need for supernatural powers. Since I don't know what you mean by "freaky stuff" I can't really comment on your claims, but why assume it's supernatural? The fact that no magician claims to actually do the things it looks like s/he does should keep us all aware of the power of illusion, and open to skeptical considerations.
posted by mdn at 7:55 AM on February 17, 2003


no one's ever been able to successfully demonstrate that "mojo" to the masses either - or even to a single skeptical witness. The only people who believe this stuff after seeing it are the ones who really strongly believed it before seeing it.

No, that's not so. I've seen skeptical people end up wide-eyed. But close-mindedness like your own is why I won't discuss this type of thing to anyone who hasn't had an experience similar to being picked up off the ground or tossed around by an ancient little Chinese fellow whose muscles are never anything but completely relaxed. Feeling is believing.

So, end of discussion. Bill Moyer's special in China might impress you, but I doubt it. Your mind is made up.
posted by Shane at 12:25 PM on February 17, 2003


I always assumed firewalking was the Leidenfrost effect, similar to putting out a match on your tongue (and impressively blowing the smoke out of your mouth afterwards). Simple physics, that. Feet tend to sweat, after all.
posted by Shane at 12:33 PM on February 17, 2003


I didn't know Silat placed an emphasis on the internal stuff like Tai Chi or Aikido. Actually I don't know much about Silat at all. Shane, can you recommend any resources online to learn more about Silat in general?
posted by homunculus at 1:26 PM on February 17, 2003


But close-mindedness like your own is why I won't discuss this type of thing to anyone who hasn't had an experience similar to being picked up off the ground or tossed around by an ancient little Chinese fellow whose muscles are never anything but completely relaxed. Feeling is believing.

I don't understand why you won't discuss it with people who haven't already experienced it. You make it sound like a secret club of people in the "know"...

Look, I am generally an open minded person - I mean I know everyone thinks they are open minded, and we all disagree on what is reasonable to be open to. From my POV, you're not being sufficiently open to the possibilities of illusions etc. But I'm not responding for the sake of putting you down or trying to convert you to my perspective. I'm just trying to understand the claims.

I don't doubt that there are things we don't understand out there, but I find it difficult to imagine that a force this powerful could exist for centuries without ever being studied scientifically. It would be so easy to prove - if the "little chinese fellow" can toss around adult human beings, surely he can levitate a spoon for a group of scientists in their own lab - and he could do it with an EEG checking out his brain wave patterns to see if we could gain greater understanding about the power of our brains.

If this is a skill being passed down continuously, and the claim is that it isn't an illusion or a psychological trick or some other currently comprehensible thing, but an actual magical ability, why not explore it scientifically? Why not try to understand how this fits in with the other forces of the universe? This would be such a benefit to science and philosophy all over the world. What is the positive effect of keeping it hidden?
posted by mdn at 1:57 PM on February 17, 2003


Maybe just a Google search, homunculous. I've been exposed to more Tai Chi, and the Silat and Kun Tao that I've been exposed to has all been through a few people who have studied with a person in OH. The person in OH has a web presence, but I have mixed emotions about pointing people towards him.

On the web, I'm sure you're bound to find some sensationalist stuff about firehand and all kinds of spectacular mind-fighting techniques, and somewhere in there I suppose you might find the real stuff. Indonesians get carried away with it. Then again, they live with tigers, although there aren't many left. I don't know. Sorry! Weed through, I guess.

As far as the physical fighting of Silat and Kun Tao, the stuff I have seen is pretty effective and mean, like "whipping" and moving in diamond patterns and such. But I'm not even a novice to it.
posted by Shane at 1:57 PM on February 17, 2003


« Older Live from New York...  |  Google buys Blogger.... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments