Meaning of “Chinkuchi”

by George Mattson

Re: Chinkuchi – a hogan term for what?

Originally posted by Dana Sheets

So what doesthatmean?



From my experience, these fuzzy word problems come either from a word

or concept not translating well, or from a problem in the culture of origin.

Words can be funny things. I was once involved in the use of a

survey instrument designed to get patient-reported information

on physicaland mental health. The SF-36 is a 36 question survey asking

about your ability to do various things in the last year from walking to climbing

stairs to socializing with your friends. The full questionnaire is here.

SF-36 Survey

Question 9a. is the following:

did you feel full of pep?

Well… apparently in some African American circles, the word “pep”

is interchangeable with the British slang “mojo.” You know…

kind of like how it’s good to be bad – if that makes sense.

Or when blacks say you have an attitude, it doesn’t mean you

have a GOOD attitude.

So… Don’t get too worked up over words that come from local

dialects. Sometimes they just don’t translate very well out of

their social context.

I find it easier to understand these Eastern concepts by arriving

at them independently. Then when you try to communicate

something YOU get, the words start coming out fuzzy. THEN you

know you just might be on to something that previously you

didn’t get by other language and words. A really good example of

that for me is the concept of yin and yang. More and more, I find

it easy to use those concepts when approaching martial arts as

a parsimonious set of principles rather than a massive bag of

nifty techniques.

Ever tried to explain the difference between mushin and zanshin

to beginners? I totally get it now. But in the past, it was a bit of

mumbo jumbo to me. Now when I quiz my students about it

(as I’m teaching), I see that many don’t get it in spite of my

best efforts to communicate it.

This is a very real thing in math. When I first saw the definition

of a derivative (expressed as limits), I just didn’t get it. Honest

to God, it took about 4 years for it to sink in so that I “knew”


it at an intuitive level.

– Bill





Related Articles

Leave a Comment