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    Anybody know about a Martial Art called “Kavanah”?

    I have not been able t ofind a description of it. It is supposedly an Israeli martial art. It looks like the office complex I work in is going to have an off-hours instructor in it. I have never heard of it though.

    “The Crane”

    13 Responses

    1. It’s called Krav Maga, much beloved by Mossad, apparently.

      See the Wikipedia article:

    2. Lol. I suppose if you translate the Israeli/Yiddish to English conversion, Kavanah does sound like Krav Maga.

      Since Krav Maga is the only Israeli “martial arts” I know about, and the Mossad does use the training methodology and the civilian-private sector offshoots do advertise such usage, it would not be beyond the odds for it to be the same thing.

    3. Gotta watch out for that Yiddish accent, purple ; )

    4. Yes, it does look to be Krav Maga…a branding of it in the Milwaukee area:


      The next phase in Israeli Martial Arts. Miki Erez, Moti Horenstein and Dr. Neil (Naftali) Farber worked together to develop this system, which is a compilation of all existing self-defense systems (technically the basis is Krav Maga and Survival Hisardut). The system also incorporates several Oriental martial styles including Oyama Full Contact Karate, Brazilian Ju Jitsu, Japanese Ju Jitsu, Muay Thai Kickboxing, Dynamic Taekwondo, and Hapkido. In addition, this art incorporates the nutritional and health concerns in Survival Hisardut with new mental, psychological and philosophical foundational principles utilizing the concepts of Kavanah – with great intent, purpose and mindfulness. With the State of Israel as an example, the goals of Kavanah are not simply to survive, but to live well.


      During the workday, Neil Farber is a pediatric anesthesiologist at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin. After-hours, Farber turns to his first love — an Israeli-style martial art that he helped develop.

      “I’ve only been practicing medicine for 20-something years, but I’ve been doing [martial arts] for 30 years,” said Farber in a recent interview.

      Farber, along with accomplished Israeli martial arts and self-defense masters Miki Erez and Moti Horenstein, developed a new system of hand-to-hand fighting and defense called Kavanah.

      Farber calls Kavanah the first Israeli martial art. It is a marriage of sorts, based on systems of Israeli self-defense (Krav Maga, Haganah/FIGHT and World Survival Hisardut) and on Oriental martial arts. Students learn not only how to deter an attacker but also a total life style system that emphasizes total body and mental fitness and health, he said.


      Dr. Neil Farber
      6th Degree Black Belt – Kavanah and Hisardut
      Madrich Rashi (Head Instructor) at the Center, has over thirty-five years experience in Martial Arts. Beginning in 1971, he studied judo, shotokan karate, aikido and kung fu. In 1974, he began Taekwondo and Hapkido and earned his 3rd Dan Black Belt and Instructor Certification in two different styles. Dr. Farber is also a certified instructor in Goshindo – Japanese weaponry. Dr. Farber earned his 2nd Dan Black Belt in Combat Hapkido, a more practical self-defense system and has spent many years intensely focused on the most practical and effective defense systems known – the Israeli Combat Arts. Dr. Farber began in Krav Maga and Haganah, while progressing to 6th Dan Black Belt and Master Instructor in World Survival Hisardut. He is currently the highest ranking Hisardut instructor in the Midwest and the only Certified Instructor in LOTAR (Israeli Antiterrorism) and KAPAP (Israeli hand-to-hand fighting). Dr. Farber helped develop the Martial Art of Kavanah which incorporates several Israeli defense styles with many traditional styles of Martial Arts. Dr. Farber is a Pediatric Anesthesiologist at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin and a Pharmacologist at the Medical College of Wisconsin who has focused his attention on Alternative Medicines.


    5. My Yiddish is pretty weak. It consists of word I heard my German relatives using or calling each other. I thought of it as “old person slang”, until knew it was Yiddish. The words are sure fun.

    6. People that are just interested in using the tool of violence to kill people whenever it is necessary can learn how to use violence very quickly, like TFT’s two day live training.

      But if you want a “lifestyle choice”, as they termed it, then competition martial arts or just martial arts is much much better.

      It’s the difference between 2 days to learn everything you need to know about how to kill serial killers or criminals (or anyone you wish, if you were a sociopath) and 30 plus years.

      You don’t need 30 years to train a soldier and the same principle applies to marksmanship and bare hands combat. And I mean combat, not “sport combat”. Those two are not the same, even if they try to use the same name.

      Violence is so simple a tool that even untrained criminals can just “happen” to use it with total efficacy. Imagine what someone trained can do. It is like pitting a mob against the US Marines. Something very weird would happen if the limiters on the Marines were taken off.

      The Krav Maga instruction tapes I saw, the introduction tapes, did not have joint breaking or ground work (BJJ submission type techniques).

      It is a simple fact that you can’t get these complex joint locks to work in reality, meaning when there are no rules. You can’t get them to work unless you cheat, as in break the rules. And you do that by injuring someone first. Nobody is going to be able to effectively resist what you are going to do with 2 shattered knees and no usable eyes to speak of. Assuming the first injury doesn’t take out the guy automatically, that is.

      I suspect that’s why KM doesn’t teach them. Or at least, doesn’t teach them as part of self-defense. Cause in order to break people’s joints in a fight, you either have to do it accidentally (like football injuries) or you must do it on purpose (as in attacking). And KM does not recommend that you attack, but recommends that you flee. That is self-defense, technically speaking. But it is not teaching you how to use the tool of violence, that is only incidental, so to speak, to protecting yourself.

      This is different from war, where you can’t be distracted over defending every weak point you got. You have to attack and just ignore the fact that you can be killed or your capital destroyed or whatever, because the enemy cannot attack you if you are attacking its weak points and successfully so. Worrying about yourself becomes incidental to attacking the enemy. Whereas in self-defense, attacking the enemy is an incidental byproduct of the goal of protecting yourself. The two methodologies, while seemingly similar, cannot be more drastically different. Colonel Boyd’s OODA work has already proven that.

      In normal social fights or even some criminal instances, you can choose to run away. There is no choosing to end a war by running away. You either win or you lose. And that is, essentially, the choice for practitioners of violence. Either you get to do it on somebody else, or you get it done on you. There are no compromises. No, half and half. No “I’m attacking and defending at the same time”.

      Course, that’s not something productive sheep in a prosperous and safe democracy need to know. it is not necessary. That’s what the police and the military are for. To protect and shield the population from such realities.

    7. Perp? If they are bringing in a martial art instructor… interesting. I thought I knew where you worked, not I’m not so sure.

    8. SK: I am a man of mystery.

      YM: I may be looking to take a martial art as lifestyle exercise choice (most likely Judo again or Krav Maga).

      I am also interested in though in just real self defense. TFT sure looks interesting to me for fitting that bill.

    9. The fundamental incompatibilities between martial arts and TFT (not just self-defense fields) concerns social vs asocial, training methodology (no taps), and technique based moves vs principle/targeting based moves.

      The compatibilities, however, which make either one fill up the other concerns: training on the mat (regardless of which, actual practice equals performance), physical limitations (muscle and joint limits and capabilities are the same and if you learn the deal in TFT, it’ll be the same in any martial art, no matter what they teach it as), kinesthetics, some physical conditioning, and confidence.

      But usually you will run into problems at the upper echelon. Meaning, those that want to get really good at either can’t train in both. But for beginners, it doesn’t really matter. The same reason why the military can’t train for anything except reality (and sometimes a tougher reality than the real war).

      The rules in competition sports are not the rules on the streets and no amount of training is going to change training for one into training for the latter.

      For example, concerning wrist breaks, only 2 or 4 out of the six possible are really considered usable on the street by martial arts or jiu jitsu practitioners. This is due to the fact that you cannot really use muscle strength to snap the wrist joint in a Base 1 or Base 2, if the hand is held in a fist and thus removing a potential lever arm.

      In TFT, all six are just as viable, precisely because the goal is not to pull the guy’s wrist in an uncomfortable direction. The aim is striking, via setting up rotation and forces, inside a joint in order to tear out the tendons and ligaments. And the best and perhaps only certain way to do this is to use your body mass as gravity accelerates it towards the ground. But to set up the positions on the ground, you can use any of the numerous classical martial arts fields such as throwing, trips, slips, take downs, pain submission holds, strikes, or etc. You just have to differentiate the rules here.

      For most situations, this isn’t much of a problem. Meaning, most situations you have time to think this stuff through. TFT’s training methodology assumes you don’t have time, that you need to get it right the first time, and not 10 seconds later.

      Most, if not all criminals, are untrained in the martial arts or in self-defense. Basics are enough for them, on the most part. Especially since thugs tend to pick on the weak, not on those that can fight back with any efficiency. But what criminals have an advantage is the same advantage terrorists have against US Marines. The US Marines are trained and have greater firepower, yes, but they also have limitations. These limitations, which the terrorists do not have, give the terrorists an edge and allows terrorism to prosper.

      People with an intent to kill will usually find a way to do it. That’s the gift of the human brain, for one thing. A person that has lots and lots of training, but essentially limits himself so that his training and tools only account for maybe 1% of his total potential power, is actually at a handicap when it comes to our enemies, who have little training and little firepower, but who don’t have ANY limitations. They can use 100% (and 150% if they are on adrenaline and epinephrine) of their capacity.

      Which means when you drop your social limitations, that by itself, with no training whatsoever, will increase your threat value by orders of magnitude. As it did for the passengers of Flight 93, who became warriors not because they were trained to retake the cockpit of a 747, but because they dropped their social limitations holding them back from the use of lethal violence.

      But this usually only happens on special occasions and not because we want it to. That’s because it is only those special incidents that make us want to do so in the first place. For sociopaths, they don’t need any special circumstances. They are without restraint all the time. That is their natural state of being. Like the natural state of Zarqawi, who is kind of dead right now.

    10. The level at which ROE is, whether it is too restrictive or not restrictive enough, functions as an extraordinarily force multiplier or divider in America’s wars.

      ROE, by itself, can make or break a battle. Although usually America’s leadership and combat prowess is enough to recover fights even if the ROE is dumb as hell. It just means more casualties. To the person on the street, that casualty is going to be like the final casualty of their war.

    11. http://www.melaniephillips.com/articles-new/?p=642

      She has a new article up about the decay of Brit land.

      TFT recently had a live training up in that land.

      They are going to need it, trust me on that one.

    12. TFT sounds interesting I will be checking into that.

      Yeah, Europe is facing troubles and trial ahead.

    13. Great post I learned alot! Thanks =)

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