The Museum of Hoaxes
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Lord Gordon-Gordon, robber of the robber barons, 1871
Vilcabamba, the town of very old people, 1978
The Case of the Vanishing Belly Button, 1964
The Stone-Age Tasaday Hoax, 1971
Dog wins art contest, 1974
Can a bar of soap between your sheets ease muscle cramps?
Tourist Guy 9/11 Hoax, Sep 2001
Boy floats away in balloon, 2009
Script of Casablanca rejected, 1982
September Morn, the painting that shocked the censor, 1913
The Ancient Art of Yellow Bamboo
image Yellow Bamboo is a form of white magic/martial art developed in Bali. If you sign up to get the free Yellow Bamboo training video then "you can learn very powerful methods to protect yourself and others. If you watch the videos you will see that it is possible to knock down attackers without touching them. This is a very powerful form of personal development." Annoyed by these extravagant claims (particularly the one about being able to knock down opponents without touching them), some Jiu-Jitsu practitioners decided to challenge the local Yellow Bamboo masters to a test "to prove once and for all that no-touch or Chi knockouts are, and have always been, complete and utter bullshit." These were the guidelines for the test: "The YB practitioner assumes a stance on the sand and is given time to prepare his Chi in accordance with YB practices. The challenger then runs 20 feet across the sand and attacks the YB practitioner. As the challenger is making his run, the YB practitioner has to effectively disable or deflect him using his chi." Needless to say, the Yellow Bamboo people completely failed the test.
Categories: Sports
Posted by The Curator on Fri Feb 18, 2005
Comments (80)
Randi did a few write-ups about that yellow bamboo crap a year or two back. Here's three of the articles in order.

http://www.randi.org/jr/091903.html

http://www.randi.org/jr/100303.html

http://www.randi.org/jr/100303.html

Short synopsis, This took place in Bali, a local sceptic went to check it out and was knocked unconscious during the demonstration. The yellow bamboo people claimed that they won the JREF Million $ challange, but as there had been no agreed upon proticol(spelling?)for the test, they couldn't claim the prize. Just as well because the sceptic was more than likely shocked by a tazer or stungun during the test. Yellow Bamboozled, eh?
Posted by JoeSixpack  on  Fri Feb 18, 2005  at  07:33 PM
It's not that I don't believe it's possible that there are martial artists out there who have discovered truly wondrous and mystical ways to harness internal energy for magic-like effects. It's a big world, I've seen some weird stuff, so maybe.

It's just that I feel absolutely certain that people who had such knowledge would not offer it via a free training video.
Posted by Barghest  on  Fri Feb 18, 2005  at  09:19 PM
The video of the encounter is quite amusing!
snake
Posted by Glamcat  on  Fri Feb 18, 2005  at  10:28 PM
As someone who's seen Jujitsu in action (Dad's an old-school, third-degree blackbelt), I gotta say.. they were taking it easy on the guy. Even the one that got wrestled and pinned until release. Between the hokey stance and whatnot, those guys could've been laid out by a yellow belt.
Posted by Bobcat  in  Californian Wierdo  on  Sat Feb 19, 2005  at  02:36 AM
You beat me to the Randi links, Joe Sixpack. Damn.
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Sat Feb 19, 2005  at  04:37 AM
Barghest said:

"It's not that I don't believe it's possible that there are martial artists out there who have discovered truly wondrous and mystical ways to harness internal energy for magic-like effects. It's a big world, I've seen some weird stuff, so maybe."

Well, if stuff like that exists, why can't anyone prove it in a scientifically-controlled test?
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Sat Feb 19, 2005  at  04:38 AM
Is that video for real?? It looks like some friends hanging out on the beach having fun... And what about the dog? Is his name Chi? Maybe it's just me, but I'm missing something here...
Posted by corax  in  Lisbon - Portugal  on  Sat Feb 19, 2005  at  06:05 AM
I have to say I was a little disappointed by the video- if some guy threatened to knock me out without contact and i managed to actually get to him, i'd make sure he'd remember it.

I practise judo though, not jiu-jitsu
Posted by Nick  in  Merrie Olde Englande  on  Sat Feb 19, 2005  at  06:40 AM
Somebody says they can knock me down without touching me (and without throwing or shooting anything at me); they've got a pretty heavy burden of proof to clear before I'm going to believe them.
Posted by Big Gary C  in  Dallas, Texas  on  Sat Feb 19, 2005  at  12:50 PM
Uh, Joe Sixpack, unless my glasses are messing up my eyesight something bad, the last two links you reference are the same. All three are the same out to the jr/ but the first is 091903 and the next two are 100303 after that.

In my twenty years on active duty I was sent around the world and I always heard of people who could do such amazing things as knock someone out from a distance or pull their testicles into the body cavity to protect them during a fight or whatever, but I could never find anyone who could do it. It was always second or third-hand information. And it was always the same answer when I asked: "Why doesn't this person go public and make a fortune?" "Well, it would be a violation of the spiritual values of the teachings." Going public would be the easiest way to get everyone to follow their teachings as far as I know, wouldn't that be worth it? As of now, I don't believe it but I am willing to change my stance based upon new evidence.

I also, for a project I was doing at the time, investigated the various martial arts available about fifteen years ago or so. Yellow Bamboo was not one I was able to research then, never heard of it until now. Was it so secret then?
Posted by Christopher Cole  in  Tucson, AZ  on  Sat Feb 19, 2005  at  05:06 PM
Big Gary C said:

"Somebody says they can knock me down without touching me (and without throwing or shooting anything at me); they've got a pretty heavy burden of proof to clear before I'm going to believe them."

That is, of course, the only rational position to take on extraordinary claims. When it comes to stuff like that, we should ALL be from Missouri: Show me, mofo!
Posted by crankymediaguy  on  Sun Feb 20, 2005  at  04:22 AM
In the Randi case, as I recall, the skeptic tried to attack the yellow bambu master but, when he was about to hit him, other guys made him fall attacking from the back, while the yellow bambu master was pretending he was doing some chi projection or whatever. For the guy falling, it seemed like he had been hit by some strange and occult force; from people outside, it was obvious - he was pulled by the master's helpers.
It's a hoax, a trick, a blatant lie.
Posted by Paulo M.  in  Portugal  on  Sun Feb 20, 2005  at  02:13 PM
Speaking as someone who does the 'ancient' art of Tai Chi, that looked rubbish! The YB practicioners look as though all the martial arts they know about is by watching wrestling shows, not even martial arts! I also think I can come up with some better stories about utilising Chi...such as the story about the guy by the name of Yang the Invincible who caught a bird on his hand, and no matter how hard the bird flapped, it couldn't fly away - but that happened 200 years ago.
Posted by Smerk  in  to mischief  on  Sun Feb 20, 2005  at  07:51 PM
I think this all comes from being able to cause someone to flinch. If a known expert came at you and was making a move to strike, your body would react by flinching and naturally moving in the direction of the blow in order to roll with the punch. I can imagine a master running up to new students and scaring them to the point of falling down by doing this.
Posted by Oscar  on  Mon Feb 21, 2005  at  11:52 AM
>>>Well, if stuff like that exists, why can't anyone prove it in a scientifically-controlled test?<<<

Not my point.

Anyway, why should an enlightened master (assuming such a thing exists) give a damn what you thought? If they felt they had something to prove (or worse yet, that it was time to cash in), they couldn't very well be called enlightened.

The point is that yes, I'll keep an open mind about these kinds of things, unless the claimants are making an obvious, crude attempt to cash in on their 'secret knowledge'. As far as I'm concerned, further experimentation isn't required; that's a dealbreaker right there.

It's like, sure, maybe there's a Holy Grail out there somewhere. But if Ron Popeil does an informercial where he's selling holy water from the Grail, by the vial, I don't need any further evidence to call bullshit on him right then. Because by the very nature of the legend, it just wouldn't work that way.
Posted by Barghest  on  Mon Feb 21, 2005  at  10:21 PM
The Holy Grail was supposed to be full of Christ's blood, not water. So yes, vials of holy water from the Grail would certainly be fake.
cool smirk
Posted by Big Gary C  in  Dallas, Texas  on  Sat Feb 26, 2005  at  05:44 PM
According to Dan Brown, the holy grail is Mary Magdalene or the 'Divine Feminine' or something like that. That's about all I still remember from the Da Vinci Code.
Posted by The Curator  in  San Diego  on  Sat Feb 26, 2005  at  06:24 PM
The Holy Grail was originally supposed to be the cup used at The Last Supper, where Jesus says that the wine is His blood of the New Covenant. Everything else is a later add-on. Most of the add-ons were pagan stories transfered to the Grail to emphaasize it holy and/or magic qualities, such as the healing power in the Indiana Jones movie The Last Crusade. I presume that somewhere along the line one of the add-ons was that if you poured water into the Grail it became holy and able to work miracles.
Posted by Christopher Cole  in  Tucson, AZ  on  Sat Feb 26, 2005  at  07:03 PM
Hi,

Well instead of going around the net and reading people their OPINIONS on this, which didn't help me any further I decided to GO TO BALI and see for myself.
I've been searching for this knowledge for about 10 years and I have found some people who are able to do it, but they either didn't want to teach me or the system took years of heavy practice without certainty if you could achieve anything. So I just couldn't do with just people their comments. And I'm happy I did and I went over there to see for myself. I learned a lot.
And compared to some of the other stuff I saw, man this knocking down means nothing compared to that. Actually in Bali, people find this just as normal as taking a pee. They really don't understand why we westerners make such a big deal from it. THe system has way more to offer than just the knocking down though.
So I think I'm now in a position to answer some of your questions.
1) About the stungun theory:
No way. The 'sceptic' had no signs of the use of such a device on his body or clothes. He also declared that he didn't feel such thing. Trust me if someone uses something like that on you, you feel it.

Ku'un

Yellow Bamboo Teacher Training 10 Day intensive course: October 16-26th 2005
http://www.zensation.info
Posted by Zensation  on  Fri Sep 02, 2005  at  05:12 AM
2) You feel absolutely certain that they would not offer free training videos.
Hmm I don't see the logic of that as I offer a free video myself. But anyway, it is indeed not optimal to train with the videos it makes a huge difference when you get your training in person.
The videos are an attempt at making this knowledge spread through the world and give you an idea of what it looks like though.

3) The video being amuzing: Well I witnessed about 9 knock outs overthere. Including westerners knocking each other down. The people who where knocked down loose total control of their body and fall. You end up with bruises and scars from falling. It ain't funny.
Ku'un

Yellow Bamboo Teacher Training 10 Day intensive course: October 16-26th 2005
http://www.zensation.info
Posted by Zensation  on  Fri Sep 02, 2005  at  05:13 AM
4) Why hasn't anyone scientifical tes proved this.
That presuposes that science is able to explain this. Which further presuposes at a deeper level that science is finished, doesn't need to advance any more. In that case it wouldn't make sense to do any research since all answers are there already. The millions pumped into research clearly shows that this is not the case.
And it also depends on how you define a scientific test.
So there are some cases in which this thing didn't work. Mind you that this was always where things were set up as an "experiment", not real life threathening situations. So if you have 2 test or so where it didn't work and already 12 where it did work (of which I witnessed 9), would that be a scientific test? Actually the amount of cases where it did work is much higher.

5) Why does this person not go public? Hmm so one thinks they wouldn't offer free videos, another one asks why they don't go public. Well not much logic in there, right?

Ku'un

Yellow Bamboo Teacher Training 10 Day intensive course: October 16-26th 2005
http://www.zensation.info
Posted by Zensation  on  Fri Sep 02, 2005  at  05:15 AM
6) You RECALL that in Randi his case they attacked in his back??? So you where there? So you just call it a blatant lie? Or are you also one of these people that accepts what other people tell him as the absolute truth so you don't need to form an opinion for you own. Yeah, thats the easy way of course and I totally respect that. It is much easier than challenging your current definition of reality. It just isn't my way.
Compare this with explaining an Indian in a remote piece of forest in Brazil that you have a device that can transfer your voice all over the world and even send pisctures, your mobile phone. He will think you are crazy.
Personally I prefered going overthere myself. All the KO's I witnessed where done in clear daylight with people at a distance of at least 10-20 feet away, so no way they could grab someone from that distance and pull him to the ground and than sit back. Unless they ofcourse where faster than the speed of light.
Ku'un

Yellow Bamboo Teacher Training 10 Day intensive course: October 16-26th 2005
http://www.zensation.info
Posted by Zensation  on  Fri Sep 02, 2005  at  05:16 AM
7) As to the Tai Chi expert here telling they clearly don't know any martial arts. Well don't confuse your "martial art", pracitced in the safe and relaxing suroundings of your western environment with a fighting sport. Live in Bali is a bit different. They can't afford fancy techniques or smooth balerina like graceful movements. People are very open there, if they say in your face that they will kill you, they mean that. If you cause an accident and hurt someone you might be killed by people of a village taking revenge on you. An eye for an eye. Justice is to expensive for most people there and takes to much of their time, which they need to spend on working on theior daily survival. Actually this is why silat is so brutal. It had to focus on techniques that work brutally efficient, since the daily dangers overthere are not just looking to your left and right to see if there is a car coming. Beside the plenty rivals they have had over the years, people robing and stealing it also includes the danger of being attacked by wild animals.
Silat actually teaches some of the aspects of this inner art to its high level students.
As to the story of the birth: there is a far more recent story of a Ninja master killing a bird with his voice.

8) About the flinching. I hope you are not serious with that right? Do you honestly think that someone will fall and be unconcious from flinching? Woaw that sounds like a magical technique they should be teaching in every karate school than.

9) As to the Holy Grail, it is not a cup at all.
I hope this can clarify some things.

Ku'un

Yellow Bamboo Teacher Training 10 Day intensive course: October 16-26th 2005
http://www.zensation.info
Posted by Zensation  on  Fri Sep 02, 2005  at  05:17 AM
Hey, zensation, why don't we put this to the test? Let me know when you're on the Oregon coast and I'll let you try your Yellow Bamboo nonsense on me. I'll stand perfectly still and you can try to knock me down, using your mind power. No one can touch me in any way. Also, no weapons, projectiles, gas or electrical shock of any kind can be used. You have to knock me down using only the power of your mind.

OK, what would you care to bet me that you can't do it? Will you sign your car over to me when--not if--you fail? Can I have $1000? $10,000? If not, why not? Aren't you absolutely positive that you can accomplish this magical feat? I will sign a waiver to the effect that I will not sue you if I'm injured when I fall down because of you using your mind power on me.

I gotta confess, I'm really getting tired of people who make absurd claims and won't back them up. Knock me down without any physical contact of any kind. Either you can do this or you can't.

If you can achieve this feat, which you claim to be able to do, I will become your biggest fan. I will praise you and your amazing ability everywhere I can. I will tell everyone how I used to be a skeptic and now I am a believer. And all you have to do is simply demonstrate your amazing ability. Simple.

In addition, prior to the event, I will do everything in my power to publicize your attempt. I will contact the local newspapers, radio and TV stations. I will put fliers up locally. We can do it on the beach so that as many people as possible can witness your attempt. If we're lucky and the weather's good, we may get thousands of people to watch you try to knock me down, using only your mind power. Wouldn't that be a great way to spread the word about Yellow Bamboo?

So, when may I expect your arrival on the Oregon coast? Bring your camcorder. You can be sure I'll have mine handy.
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Fri Sep 02, 2005  at  06:23 AM
Hi,
The name is Ku'un actually.
First of all I really don't have time or interest in travelling all over the world proving people wrong. I did travel to the other part of the globe just to see for myself. Sure I I stayed and got trained. As for your request to belong to my fan club, well you would have to consider a change of sex and I'll send you an application form. wink
Your comments show you cleary have not the faintest clue on the principles that are at work here. But that's ok, I don't expect you to.
This can't be done by standing still. You see this is unlike a sport, focused on real life threatening situations therefore an attack needs to be initated and the attacker needs to be angry, real angry. In Bali they slap the attacker in the face to get him angry. It is not the power of the mind that causes this. I explain some of the underlying principles in my book though.

Where did I state that I could do it? This post was only stating what I've witnessed. Although I did do it myself too, after intensive training.

Can you have $1000 or $10,000? You want me to come overthere and you don't even know the way to the ATM? So I doubt you have the necessary contacts or experience with the media, anyway.
Perhaps you can ask Randi, he still owes Yellow Bamboo something I think.

You are free to come to Bali though. You could be knocked out as many times as you want and I'll even give you a free airline ticket valid for 2 years when you would show up in Bali in October.

Have fun,
Ku'un
Posted by Zensation  on  Fri Sep 02, 2005  at  08:43 AM
Hey Ku'un did you ever stop to think that maybe you were duped? I mean it sounds like the perfect scam to me. These Bali guys dress up and act like martial arts experts, pretend to fall over when their buddies hit them with "Chi" and stupid westerners like you are completely taken. Then they let you try it on them and they fall over seemingly unconscious.
I've seen some videos of this kind of stuff and they all say different things about it. Some say the attackers have to be charging or angry. Others say that doesn't matter. Anyway it seems like a bunch of bullshit to me but its kind of amusing. The funny thing is that people like you are actually convinced it works even though there is no difinitive evidence or scientific explanation for it.
Posted by Bmarsh  in  MD, USA  on  Thu Sep 29, 2005  at  10:26 PM
"Hey Ku'un did you ever stop to think that maybe you were duped? I mean it sounds like the perfect scam to me."

Hi. I sure did. I thought about it very carefully before I went overthere. I also did some energy tests. It was because all this discussion on the net doesn't help much. There are more people speaking based on their prejudices and habits than people who really did the trouble to experience this. I decided to check it out because I really wanted to know if it is real and if so I wanted to learn it.

"These Bali guys dress up and act like martial arts experts, pretend to fall over when their buddies hit them with "Chi"..."

The don't claim to be martial arts experts. They don't even understand why WE westerners make such a fuss about the knocking down. I understand them. Compared to some of the other stuff I saw overthere, this knocking down is nothing.

"... and stupid westerners like you are completely taken. Then they let you try it on them and they fall over seemingly unconscious."

Thanks for the compliment. Always nice to hear some nice words. I'm pretty sure that me having a degree in law and my interests in science really qualify me as stupid. Or perhaps they qualify me better to see right through the kind of scam you are making up in your mind....
anyway besides opinions I saw Westerners knocking each other down too. And the guys who drop to the ground loose all control over their bodies and end up with bruises etc from falling.

"I've seen some videos of this kind of stuff and they all say different things about it. Some say the attackers have to be charging or angry. Others say that doesn't matter. Anyway it seems like a bunch of bullshit to me but its kind of amusing. The funny thing is that people like you are actually convinced it works even though there is no difinitive evidence or scientific explanation for it."

Hey that's funny you mention that. There is no scientific explanation for HOW magnetism works, nor is there such explanation for HOW or WHY gravity exists. It was not untill people learned to fly that we could experience what some clever minds already thought, namely that you can disable the effects of gravity under certain.
conditions. In my book I write a little about the underlying scientific process that give some explanations to a certain extend to how this is possible.

Have fun,
Ku'un

http://www.zensation.info
Posted by Ku'un Aru  in  .  on  Wed Oct 05, 2005  at  02:47 PM
I think it's pretty obvious that the video proved that it's all a load of rubbish. If they have fun doing it, then good for them. But YB'ers are seriously deluded if they ever thought those two guys were suddenly going to be knocked out by there chi blasts ^_^ Heaven help them if they actually thought they could use it to protect themselves in a real situation!
Posted by Bronze  on  Tue Feb 07, 2006  at  02:23 PM
Hi Bronze,

"I think it's pretty obvious that the video proved that it's all a load of rubbish."

This presupose you consider a video proof.
The videos we provide from Yellow Bamboo are not to proof anything, they are to inform and illustrate.

"If they have fun doing it, then good for them."
Thanks, we have loads of fun. Mind you though that being knocked out is no fun at all.

"But YB'ers are seriously deluded if they ever thought those two guys were suddenly going to be knocked out by there chi blasts ^_^"

There are no Chi blasts. It works in another way. So please don't compare something advanced and innovative with something old you have heared of.


"Heaven help them if they actually thought they could use it to protect themselves in a real situation!"
Oh but we don't just think about it. We actually do it. A friend of me did it during a robbery in L.A. a couple of months ago. There are loads of examples from people in Bali using this in their daily life too.
Of course I understand it is easier to not question your view on relity as it was shoved into you through social and cultural conditioning.
If you want you can come over to Bali during one of our annual training retreats and be knocked out as many times as you want. That way our students would have someone to practice on.
Personally I don't really see the fun in it, but if that would make you happy that is good for you.

Best regards,
Ku'un

More info on Yellow Bamboo can be found on:
http://www.zensation.info
Posted by ku'un aru  on  Fri Feb 10, 2006  at  03:27 PM
Ku'un said:

"Of course I understand it is easier to not question your view on relity as it was shoved into you through social and cultural conditioning."

How about SCIENCE and scientific training? Are there different rules of physics where you operate? The objections to what you claim to be able to do are based on the fact that your claims defy the known laws of physics. That is why James Randi has offered you his foundation's million-dollar prize.

"If you want you can come over to Bali during one of our annual training retreats and be knocked out as many times as you want. That way our students would have someone to practice on."

You paying? Can a bring a friend (who will have a video camera) with me at your expense? Will you guarantee that there will be NO use of anything other than your magical, mystical powers? I didn't think so.
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Fri Feb 10, 2006  at  06:41 PM
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