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Self-defense Portal

This is the front page of the self-defense section, containing content about techniques and tactics for personal safety, and dealing with acute violence on the individual level.

Self-defense is an extremely important topic to activists involved in civil disobedience and those taking part in popular movements and uprisings. First, knowing how to reduce risk and mitigate some of the effects of violence experienced under oppression is of obvious benefit. Second, if the activists are perceived as remotely threatening to the powers-that-be, they are the likely targets of violence: state repression is still a collection of personal, violent interactions between small groups of people. The skills and knowledge to defend oneself from violent attack must be distributed as widely as possible: many historical revolutions saw popular self-defense education (as well as public military training) to be integral to either the success of the revolution, or the success of the post-revolutionary prevention of a counter-revolution. 

As well, knowledge of a modern, and non-violent, martial art such as Aikido, is particularly important to activists, as they may frequently find themselves in situations where Police or other state agents try to provoke violence, and the need to be using the minimal force required becomes almost as important as the need to not get hurt. With a modicum of knowledge and training, people can learn to greatly reduce their chances of being hurt during a violent altercation.The discovery that it can be possible, with consistent and dedicated training, to even protect an attacker from harm during a violent interaction, reveals at a personal level the notion that ideas can be engaged -- and violence directly interdicted -- while reducing the risk to the physical bodies involved. This puts in practice the notion that what is needed is to change minds, removing or mitigating violent or anti-social ideas, rather than torture or kill people for weaknesses we all have, for the misfortune of being colonized by bad notions.

For more information about the importance of self-defense training to popular movments, please see the background information on the Disarmy concept

Open-Source Self-defense Textbook

This section of the site will contain an open-source multi-media textbook on self-defense and nonviolent martial arts (particularly content from Aikido and defensive Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu) as well as crisis response, de-escalation and conflict resolution.

Initial Tasks

Initial tasks in this section of the site are the creation of open-source training and teaching resources for self-defense classes and training groups.

Didactic content, including written descriptions, photographs, videos, and/or diagrams where helpful, will be need to be created, starting with capturing the content of classes already being taught.

This section will also contain discussions of the connections between modern forms of personal self-defense which are philosophical and non-violent, and the larger social forces of nonviolent action in human rights, liberation and democracy struggles. For example, a synthesis of the writings of Morihei Ueshiba and Gene Sharp.

Collaboration for a Public Resource

The wealth of content in a Wiki site depends on the participation of its visitors making incremental improvements.

Because of the contentious nature of this content, and the ubiquity of spam, until a large community of defenders of the content exists (usually past authors and other interested parties), we require contributors to create a free account here. Users can then contribute, for example:

  • Editing a page using the 'Edit' tab.
  • Creating new pages by adding a link to potential topics, using [[ ]]
  • Contributions can be point form, expanding an existing paragraph, original writing, helping correct spelling, grammar or clarity, adding wiki syntax to non-wiki content, adding links to existing internet content, etc… Additions need not be complete or even well-crafted in order to move the content building forward.
  • Discussing page concepts and content using the 'Discussion'.
  • 'Watching' pages that you've edited or topics that interest you, and correct vandalism. Conceptual disagreements should be moved to the Discussion area.