Skip to main content


Showing posts from November, 2011

Show the Truth in Your Training

The Robbery photo By gcfairch Here I will share a story I heard from Kan Junichi during Daikomyosai that proves Hatsumi Sensei is not a superhero who can dodge bullets. Of course I joke, but the story does prove something very important about the essence of training. First let me explain why I am not a superhero myself. I screw up often when I teach. I get things wrong, I slip, stumble, misspeak, let myself get hit by my students, use the wrong words, or misremember facts. If a mistake can be made, I've made it. But I always do my best to acknowledge and recognize this humbly. My mistakes are my most important teachers. Training is not real if there are no mistakes. Teachers are not real if they don't allow themselves this honesty. I've met many martial arts instructors who are terrified by this. They must always project some kind of superhuman perfection to their students and others. They only demonstrate with uke's who make them look good. And they won't try a

The Kyūsho 五輪 Gorin: Sun Crossing the Belly

Navel Lady photo by Candida.Performa Ideas as fundamental as Kyūsho 急所 (vital or tender points on the body) can seem mysterious when you try to really understand them. We have many Kyūsho 急所 in the Bujinkan. They have interesting names which vary according to the ryu. But their names and locations on the body are just the beginning and a door to understanding something deeper. Let's consider the meaning of the kyūsho 五輪 Gorin. I thought I was comfortable using this kyūsho until I read what Hatsumi Sensei wrote in his Advanced Stick Fighting book, "The kyūsho known as "Gorin" means to point at "chi-sui-ka-fu-ku." I was confused but curious about this statement. This inspired me to examine 五輪 Gorin more closely. Gorin is normally explained as five vital points around the navel. That seems simple enough. But what are the five? and what about the variations of 五輪月影 Gorin Tsukikage and 五輪稲妻 Gorin Inazuma? You will be hard pressed to find any Bujinkan tea