Paul de Thouars has been a well known and highly respected martial arts practitioner for almost 60 years. He has been described by his peers as one of the most innovative and devastating martial artists of our time. He is a practitioner of the Indonesian martial arts system of Pukulan Pentjak Silat Serak and the creator of the fighting system Pukulan Pentjak Silat Bukti Negara.
In an age where many claim to have completed several arts in one lifetime and mastered all it’s complexities. Pendekar Paul de Thouars claims only one art, the art of Sera (or Serak) and still contends he is not finished . He is the only lineage holder of the original system of Sera(k) from his teacher and mentor Guru John de Vries.
Paul de Thouars was born in East Java, Indonesia in 1930, and was raised in West Java. In 1948, at the age of eighteen, he began his martial arts training under his uncle Ernest De Vries in an POW camp in Thailand after being brought together with his father who was a prisoner there. After eight months in Thailand the fam de Thouars went to Holland where Paul stayed for almost five years. The situation at that time brought him back to Indonesia and served his time in New Guinea.
Then in 1955 he met his uncle John in Amsterdam where he restarted his training in Sera(k).
He was required to train the jurus and langkas to perfection, very little explanation was given. At the time, he did not understand what he was doing and why he was doing it. But with time and maturitym he began to understand the value and wealth of information contained in the curriculum.
The art of Sera(k) is so dense with information, it normally takes a person 15 years to complete the physical curriculum. To this day Pendekar Paul de Thouars maintains, “I am still practicing and exploring the Art of Serak” In 1971, his teacher John de Vries, gave him ten keys or principles to help him achieve a deeper understanding of the Art. With this gift of understanding, Pendekar Paul is eternally grateful. In 1971 Guru John de Vries appointed Paul as his successor before his death in 1972.