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Re: spiritual training and kihon happo
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Perhaps we need to define what is an "armchair budoka", I vote for this definition: Those who talk about walks they have never gone on

Posted on: 2011/3/15 15:39
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Re: Renting bicycles in Noda?
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I second that request! Normally I stay at the Azusa as well but am going to try something new this trip. The bike really helps a lot when going to Someya Sensei's dojo.

Posted on: 2010/1/7 10:19
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Re: Cut to the Hem
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This brings up a very good point that I had been thinking about. For quite some time I had been wondering why our Bo, Yari, Naginata, Bisento sets were only paired against a sword. In my mind it just didn't seem like much of a fight. However I had the good fortune to have Luke M. share some naginatajutsu with our dojo recently and I came to the understanding that although the polearms have the upperhand in terms of distance/reach and power, the sword (in competent hands) has the advantage in terms of speed, maneuverability, cutting surface. With that in mind, the polearm's reach and power can be negated.

Posted on: 2009/11/5 13:48
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Re: Kenjutsu in the Bujinkan
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This has turned out to be a very fruitful thread. The original post was about exposure to Bujinkan kenjutsu from the "other" ryuha. At which point I mentioned that I have been lucky enough to see two different instructors teach Gyokko ryu kenjutsu. I would like to note that the two in question come from different Bujinkan lines and the material shared an abundance of characteristics. The patterns they showed were not simple "henka" that they created off the top of their heads. Rather they were based on material learned from their senior Japanese instructors, which were learned in some form from Hatsumi sensei. The material is very complete and encompasses all three levels of the gyokko ryu as well as some kihon. The Gyokko ryu kenjutsu is essentially "ura waza" as it was explained to me. However I do not have any data or resources to "prove" them other than the sets themselves.

I would like to thank everyone that participated in this thread because it has shed light on a number of interesting points. Kenjutsu is really one of the invisible threads that connects everything in the Bujinkan. However it is difficult because most of us don't have the time/regular access to those few people that are knowledgeable in this area.

Posted on: 2009/7/20 20:22
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Re: Kenjutsu in the Bujinkan
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This is a very good question and one that I have given some thought to as well over the years. What makes the question difficult and often puts Bujinkan swordwork in general in question (when observed by outsiders) is that Hatsumi sensei is not typically doing any certain form of sword work. He is doing Hatsumi ryu, which is to my understanding the culmination or expression of his lifetime's experience.

So with that being said, perhaps the answer to your first question is no school! However as you mentioned Kuki shinden and Togakure ryu sword work are fairly prominent. But there is a catch here as well. There are only a handful of people in the greater Bujinkan community that are actually well versed in these methods. The general population is trying to do Hatsumi sensei level work (phd level)without having any prerequisite knowledge/experience (undergrad: bachelors/masters).

Now in terms of kenjutsu from the other ryu-ha, I have seen gyokko ryu swordwork from an American and a European and they were very similar. I have also seen some koto ryu, Takagi Yoshin Iai and Someya sensei showed me one exercise for Shinden Fudo Ryu kenjutsu.

I find that kenjutsu is a closely guarded gem in the Bujinkan. It takes time and the development of some sort of relationship to really get into the meat of any material.

Posted on: 2009/5/15 7:28
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Re: Ima Ninja (Ninja Now) by Soke Hatsumi
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If there is enough of an interest I would be glad to finish translating it and making it the translation available to the general public. However I must make it clear that it is a translation of the spanish translation, none the less it is a very interesting read.

Posted on: 2009/5/5 5:38
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Re: Ima Ninja (Ninja Now) by Soke Hatsumi
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There is a spanish translation available for sale through Pedro Fleitas's online shop. I've worked on translating it into english and I have portions of it done. It really is a very interesting book. Similar in ways to Ninpo wisdom for life.

Posted on: 2009/5/4 7:43
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Re: Swordwork
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Jim,

I think you've made a very good point. Everything really depends on the context. In the context of most seminars and large mixed trainings (like hombu dojo), fukuro shinai is the way to go. In smaller more controlled settings then bokken, mogito, shinken can come into play depending on the particular context. All of them have value in certain settings.

Posted on: 2009/3/8 19:51
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Re: Why do we wear black?
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As far as I know, something that is in all black is implied to be unseen in japanese art such as Ukiyo-E, Kabuki theater and Bunraku puppetry. It's not that its actually invisible, your supposed to interpret it that way. Based on this perhaps we could interpret our black uniform as a symbol for the unseen. This idea relates to the idea of "ninniku Yoroi" or the armor of forbearance as mentioned before (to accept insults/shame and what not in an unseen manner) as well as our actual taijutsu. In our taijutsu, regardless of what school or subject you are studying, this ability to keep certain aspects unseen "mie nai" is quite important.

So with that all said, and I'm sure there are other points to be made, I think our black uniform is an important and often misunderstood symbolic aspect of our training.

Gambatte!

Alex Bushman

Posted on: 2007/1/28 10:12
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Re: Kukishinden Zensho
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Speaking of the Kukishinden Zensho,

Has anyone heard mention of it by Soke or any of the Shihan?

This book has been an interest of mine for quite a while despite its expense. (and my lack of ability to read more than 20 kanji).

Thanks,

Alex Bushman

Posted on: 2007/1/10 18:33
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