The name Pencak Silat was chosen in 1948 as an umbrella term for various styles of Malay and Indonesian martial arts.
In the modern sense, Pencak and Silat are seen as two aspects of the same practice.
Pencak is the spiritual aspect of the martial art, while Silat is the essence of combat and self-defense. The origin of the words Pencak and Silat is not known. Some believe that Pencak comes from the Sanskrit word pancha - five, or avoid, distract. Silat - from sekilat, which means "(quickly) like lightning." This name may have been used to describe the movement of a warrior, and eventually shortened to Silat.