Grandmaster Tanemura Shoto
Kokusai Jujutsu Renmeri
The Essence of Budo as a Practitioner
Budo is Budo, that's all. Budo is a great Japanese inheritance which our
ancestors made for complete victory, through experience in battles by their blood and
sweat. It is not Budo if there is no thinking about battle and effect in a true fighting
case. With the Budo if you lose a fight, you face death. The Budo practitioner has to have
resolution all time to die or not. Don't confuse true Budo and Bushido which was made up
in the feudal age as a Samurai theory by Zen and Confucianism. We have to master ourselves
through Budo training. If you divide Jutsu (technique) and Michi (way), and if you try
comparing with sport and sportsman that is the idea as in Europe.
Then the Ho and Michi are just one
Sport is decided by rules, takes a weight system, starts the fight from
an oath and has an empire. This is very far from the true Budo way of Japan and the East.
For training in Budo one has to keep doing correctly the original Kata,
even the steps or swings which previous Masters left as the Ryuha. So we can reach
the point we never lose the way.
Some sportman said, training only in Kata is like a mold that one will
not be able to break out of to see its applications or variations. I don't think so. If
so, that instructor is bad. In the present, there are many strange martial art
demonstrations which look like movie shows.
For training in Budo one has to concentrate with strong Ki. So this Ki
sees into an opponents heart and he, will be afraid. If one can not do this, as a martial
artist it is not useful for true cases. If a man trains like a movie actor that is just
playing at Budo. Even when receiving a heavy injury never escape and even if ones neck is
cut never resign until you knock down and completely finish your enemy. If you just only
throw for a point (like in competition), you will never attain true Budo points.
After World War II, Japan could reconstruct and the Japanese could have
a good standard of living. But even though the economy can prosper, if one loses its
traditional culture it is very difficult to reconstruct. If one doesn't try to preserve
and study now traditional Japanese Budo will be soon be lost.
I hope to study and train in Japanese Budo instead of spending a lot of
time as a sports martial artist only with the Budokan (Japan Budo Center) and Budo class
of University. They take control of too many martial arts and are laughed at by Martial
Artists from China and Asia. These things are very shameful for the traditional
Japanese martial artist and Japan itself too.
I will say again, that martial art (Budo) is not sport and not a play
theory of Budo, and it is unimportant how long the scroll is. The most important
thing is just training and practice. There is a very famous phrase in China : "The person
well known about the way never says so, but the person who doesn't know well soon says".
By Grandmaster Sato Kinbei Sensei - 1948