One needs only to scratch the surface of human conflict to engage the scientific mind; so great are the depths and diversities found within it.
No later than the moment combative arts rose from the primordial ooze, its existence as an identifiable study immediately broke into a multitude of clear and distinctly different realms of science. A myriad of subsections and specializations that resided beneath the surface, unravelled with ever increasing rapidity.
At the mere mention of human combat, martial arts, self defense, or combatives, armed or unarmed, each and all demanded its own spotlight be focused upon their specific input, effect, and need as concealed within the magnitudes of science.
The question then is, "Which came first". Here the answer is no less opinionated than with the chicken and the egg. (By the way it was the egg...).
How did the first scientific revelations find fertile soil? Was it within the framework of psychology, or was it within straight forward physics? Perhaps it was philosophy, as we tried to paint a human face upon the bestial act of violence. What science does tell us is that each was close upon the other's heels.
The moment we questioned the rational behind human's involvement in violence, so we also evolved the question of Psychology. Should we first regard "state of mind" as the being the result of defending ourselves against some external threat. Perhaps it was rooted in the selfless act of defending ourselves against some predatory animal which lived by stalking primitive man? Certainly at some point we hosted fear as the result of a predatory humanoid? Therefore was primal human combat psychology founded in a state of anger, or of fear? Did the states and motivations of psychology surface as problems or as solutions? As an entity striving to survive did we question anger, or did we seek to quell fear? Or did both evolve as diametrically opposed necessities.
Extensive explorations into these studies continue develop to this very day. David Grossman's highly reputable studies known simply as "Killology", is an excellent example of such recent introspective explorations into the human condition. The scientific outcome of these and other such studies have shattered the common mold.
Physics of course entered the discussion the moment we physically moved, or more intensely, the very instant we began to interact with another physical being. An universe of physical computations exploded with our first steps and with our first basic attempts to balance our own form. Force to force interactions, balance and equilibrium, pressure, diffusion and hydrodynamics, speed, distance, and time. These represent a basic few of the combative based studies of physics.
As the human mind developed further evolving from the reptilian toward the cerebral cortex, the onset of realization and contemplation triggered the birth of philosophy. The singular gestation of the philosophical questions of "Why" and "Should" rapidly infused themselves into every aspect and dimension of physical conflict. On the wings of introspection every manner of question and envisionment erupted, each eruption bringing its own list of questions and queries, disillusions and answers.
A complex contemplation, so it seems, this human relationship with violence.
The study of combative psychology rooted itself immediately. From its every expanding boughs came a rainfall of specific isolated subcomponents, each demanding study. Subjects such as commitment, dedication, duty, and altruism. In some manner they do exist. But where and how? Do they reside in the most primal corners of the nature of humanity or in some refined development of the human psyche? Why purpose or function do they accomplish? Are they crucial? And how do these affects effect an effective execution of violence? Can we interpret them, inhibit them, initiate them? What are the other components, contributors? Can we benefit from the same queries and objectives applied to them? Can we enhance, diminish, or control them to benefit the human involvement in violence conflict? Which of these individual states, or possible combinations of these states cab best enhance, or benefit our combative abilities? Or again in objective reflection, reduce the combative abilities of a perspective opponent? Only science held the answers. Each field in turn generated its own niche of expertise. The notion of science as being involved in the modification of combative capabilities quickly validated deeper dissection and research into their contribution.
The scientific isolation of biomechanics, motor mechanics, leverage, and impact, quickly generated into studies unto themselves. These studies quickly evoked a focused study of combined elements. The concerning and contributing elements of biology, anatomy, physiology, and neurology were subsequently included, again widening the spectrum of scientific study.
Long ago subject fields resulting from the study of combined elements brought motivation and environment, chemistry and chemical modification, physical training and psychological reframing, to the realm of scientific study.
These combined studies highlighted an entirely new comprehension of the sciences as they applied to execution of combat. We began to understand that combat possessed its own a form of ecology. We came to understand that although we can most certainly affect the degree of contribution sourced to specific individual elements, it is this intricate balance act of multiple interacting elements that creates the total effect. To what extend to a given ratio of elements effects the final outcome is still under study today.
As such the initial objective, "a complete understanding of humans under the condition of interpersonal physical conflict", remains elusive.
Today new doors are opening to new universes of research. Research such as genetic modification and technical enhancement may one day dominate the forefront.
The armoured warriors who once withstood the advances of Persia were different men than the blue men who denied the advances of Rome. But they show no greater diversity than does a modern comparison ofa combative soldier and a combative athlete.
And what secrets will future science tell. Will the combatants of the future be again more different? Will they be the genetically modified, chemically enhanced, technological warriors of Tomorrowland? Or will each in and of them self still belong to the genesis born of the soul, mind and heart of that which will forever be the human condition?
Held in check by only the trespasses, transgressions, and altruisms of man this is still to be revealed by science and time. The one thing we know for sure is that the spectrum of scientific study and application will only expand under the curation of this creature of combat, known as "MAN". Perhaps your answers will be discovered residing within the pages of this forum.