Prince: Now I want to talk about the philosophy of Capoeira. What is Capoeira?
MPV: Capoeira is like a mental technology—a way of problem solving. A way of looking at a situation and learn how to undo it. The game that is played in the Roda (Hor-da)–circle in which Capoeira is played–is more like a metaphor of life. There is Roda and there’s the Roda of life. A Capoeira finds balance in chaos. While everyone is screaming and panicking, Capoeira finds a balance.
Prince: Wow. That is a wonderful analogy. Mestre what I love about Capoeira is its principles and philosophy; one of them being Loyalty. Please tell my audience about its principles.
MPV: It is what it is. It is something that my Mestre taught me: Patience, Persistence, Humility, Strategy, Malicia (Tricknology), Loyalty and Wisdom. Malicia–if you were to use the English language to describe it, it would take a paragraph. But, if you use Ebonics you can say “tricknology”. (Laughter)
If you understand the expression Tricknology, then you can just equate that with Malicia, for the blacks in Brazil. Wisdom would be the palm of the hand and the rest of the tenets would be the fingers. You can have the knowledge but how you use the knowledge is what makes the Wisdom.
The first three that you have to master is Patience and Persistence (which is the base of the pyramid; the brother and the sister) and then at the top it would be Humility. The first three is what you have to master before you go up the hierarchy, if you don’t, you will not survive Capoeira from the first two.
People have the Persistence to keep training and Patience (which is required), but they don’t have the Humility. And what happens is their head swells up with what they know, and you can’t tell them anything anymore. Their head is so fat that it hits the floor, and then what they do is move in a circle with their feet—the circumference of their own knowledge because no one can’t tell them anything. And that’s where they’ll stay because of their egotistical development.
Prince: Is there a way for Capoeira, to defuse their ego– their way of bad behavior?
MPV: That is their personal decision. You can create the environment to learn from their mistakes, but if you take a mule to a watering hole and they don’t want to drink, then they are not drinking. You can’t save everybody. Jesus tried and he couldn’t do it (laughing)
MPV: You can’t it’s impossible-you can get some people. It’s like this: “Capoeira is for everybody, but everybody is not for Capoeira.” Some people go off and trip and come back, after they have Life kick them in the butt for a little bit and then they become humble, mature and develop, and you can say something to them when they are ready. People learn in their own time period and some people will not learn from their own stupidity; there’s nothing you can do about it, it’s their choice.
Prince: So let them be?
MPV: It’s not about “letting” them be—it’s their choice, their path. And that’s where it will lead them. So, some leave, some quit, they don’t have what it takes to pursue Capoeira. Also, they have to be with the right Mestre. Like for me, my first Mestre was not a good match—like marriage. But the next one was a good one because of the level of wisdom that he [Mestre Touro] had. He is a master of masters! And it worked out better with me. And I would never work with the other one, because of his ego. And at this age, I don’t have time for it (laughing)
And so these principles are powerful—each one of them. Patience: not only being patient with yourself but with other people. Being patient can also be used for Strategy—waiting for the time to strike. Being patient when things don’t come your way—Persistence. When you keep a humble head you can receive knowledge. If you’re not humble, you’re limiting yourself.
“There are billions of minds out there, why limit yourself to just one?”
Strategy is intricate to your existence—it’s how you will move forward. Malicia, separates Capoeira from a lot of martial arts–some are straight forward. With Malicia you can be old broken up but yet be young and strong. Deception is a good tool—smiling when you are angry.
Prince: Wow very insightful. Any Future plans?
MPV: Right now I’m trying to save up money to have Mestre Touro to come to the states for Batisado, so if your friends on the internet want to make a charitable donation, to have the legendary Mestre Touro come to the states, please contact me.
Prince: Great! Well before we end our conversation is there anything that you want people, my audience, to know about Capoeira?
MPV: There is a faction of non-blacks that want to hide its African origin; and it’s sad that its like that. But that’s the way it is. Everyone should know where it comes from. In terms of a world level, Black culture in general is always suppressed or they try to marginalize it—they practice this black art but they don’t recognize its African origins. You can see it now. Mainstream media imitate Black Culture but won’t recognize its origin. You can see this pattern of Cultural exploitation with other cultures too.
Like they’re coming out with Iron Man 3, and the character called the “Mandarin” is being played by a white actor because the role is powerful, and there are plenty of phenomenal Asian actors who can play that role—that blatant racism. That’s what I mean.
Prince: Wow. Well Mestre, if anyone regardless of race wants to study under you. What do they need to do, know, etc?
MPV: (Laughing) I don’t tell them nothing. I act as a chameleon and watch how they act. If they are arrogant I won’t teach them; if they’re right then I will teach them. I don’t have a list because people say this and that, but when I watch them I see them of what they truly are. It also depends on the person–going back to the principles, if they don’t master the first three, they will kick themselves out. There are people out there who just want the physical workout and not the philosophy of Capoeira. Some play Capoeira to mate with the opposite sex.
MPV: No for real.
“I got into Capoeira to help Black People. And I will continue to do that. I can easily study Chinese Art, Indonesian art, but I didn’t. I’m doing this for cultural reasons.”
Prince: Do you feel that your work is improving? Are you satisfied on where you are?
MPV: My work is not done yet, but my work has helped a lot of people. There are some people that I should not have helped (laughing)–some people don’t deserve the energy of Capoeira. There are people who have undermined me from the inside: learn the moves and not show respect for me or Capoeira. They have Self-hatred. So I have to be careful. So my perspective is this:
“I can’t help everybody, I can’t win everybody”
Sometimes some people are sick in the head. And the sad thing is Capoeira can’t help them. And so once I identify them, I let them go.
Prince: Thank you Mestre so much for your time. If you guys out there want to follow My Mestre please check him out at www.malandros-touro.com. If you wish to learn Capoeira and help him in his goal to have the legendary Mestre Touro come to San Diego contact him at 619-518-7782
Tune in next week as I get the inside scoop of Mayor of Coronado: Casey Tanaka…