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#286056 - 09/21/06 07:45 PM Re: No Pain no Gain [Re: Charles Mahan]
Marishiten Offline
illegitimate Onna Bugeisha

Registered: 09/17/06
Posts: 92
Loc: Australia, NSW
splice, i did not reference those quotes because they had no relevance to the theme of my post. Thank you, but I have moved on. I have also not defined what traditional JSA is, if you could please find a quote where I have that would be appreciated.

Now, I also clearly stated in my last post that yes, MAYBE the style is not purely traditional. I understand people's arguments in this department. This can really be an ENDLESS debate, which it is proving to be.

Now about training METHADOLOGY. Are you trying to say here that every legitimate schoolís sensei has exactly the same teaching-style/strategy, etc? And that these (which falls under methodology) are traditional? I very much doubt that. I am also under the impression that, if a sensei possesses a menkyo in whatever he teaches, he can teach in whatever the way he sees best. And my sensei has had experience with the more traditional teaching methods. And I am saying his METHODS are traditional, but whether the MA style is or not has been debated already and gotten nowhere, so I have gotten off that topic.

I am NOT claiming that the ryu style is fully traditional. I guess the fact that we have a somewhat mixed curriculum goes against that too. But it does not change the fact that the WAY he teaches is possibly traditional, or more so traditional than most schoolís Iíve seen.

Cxt, I donít see how differing terminology raises and red flags. Iíve clearly defined that partnered practices are not called kata, to me, and to the website I referred to. However, itís not unusual that other schoolís may have slight differences, youíll find that this is the case in all fields.

Also worth mentioning (again) our mixed curriculum. We do a fair bit of iai practice, itís scattered all through our training session. Ok, so Randori isnít part of ryu practice. But we do it, because it helps us. We do Arnis, because it helps us with shortswords. We occasionally do some knife fighting. All of these strengthen skill faster and better than only doing that which is specific to a single ryu. So itís not a traditional RYU, but no one can ever claim that 500 years or so ago the Japanese did not do any eclectic training. But it doesnít matter, as I said, assuming that my sensei has the menkyo, he can teach what he wants. And I have seen them, Japanese instructors have come to visit the dojo, so has his sensei, who has recently died. I think someone mentioned a sensei that had died on this thread recentlyÖmight be worth looking into.

Cxt, if your concern is genuine, thank you. But I very much doubt I have been conned for a number of reasons and going into them would open up even more debate I guess. If myself and my fellow student have been conned, at least THEY would have found out, after about 7 years of training with our sensei.

If bujutsu refers collectively to the entire body of classical Japanese martial arts, then I donít see whatís wrong with it being on my certificate.

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#286057 - 09/22/06 06:19 AM Re: No Pain no Gain [Re: Marishiten]
splice Offline
Member

Registered: 01/24/05
Posts: 230
Loc: Ottawa, ON
I won't reply any furhter than this since I don't see it being productive, but I'll at least try to explain one last time.

It's all about definitions. The term "traditional Japanese sword arts" refers to a very specific group of arts, at least to a great number of people in the JSA and peripherally involved with it. They are defined by their connection to the old traditions through lineage. Training methodology is just that, a training method, and has nothing to do with being traditional or not. You can train as traditionally as you like, if you are not connected to the art, then you are not practicing the art. It's the connection that is the root of all of it, not the techniques, not the training. The connection is the fundamental characteristic, and defines what comes after. It defines how you do your techniques. It defines how you train. Two groups connected to the same root may train differently, but they can both be traditional and legitimate if they've both been licensed by the soke and train according to his wishes.

You seem to be loosely defining and understanding some terms and throwing them around authoritatively. You say your style is traditional koryu, yet you don't know how you're connected to it beyond your teacher. You say you think kenjutsu means 'more violent kendo'.

If you think about it, do you know why you're practicing? Because that's the important thing. Koryu is meaningless if that's not what you're after. Iaido can be a good exercise, and it can be a social club for some. Some people might just want to swing a sword around and have fun with it. There's no point in insisting on koryu for things like that. Some people like a tussle and do 'pre-war kendo'-type things, some combine a number of styles together and [censored] around with that. IT'S ALL GOOD, AS LONG AS YOU KNOW WHAT YOU'RE ABOUT.

The problem is, I don't think you know what you're about. Or if you are, you haven't done much research to ensure that what you're doing is in sync with what you want. If you want traditional training, then you want to know how you're connected to your style, not how skilled your sensei is in getting his students to pass ranks and how traditional his method might seem. Because there is no one traditional method, there are hundreds of traditions. The way you practice in a traditional way is being connected to one of those and doing what they do.

It doesn't mean you have to change what you're doing or that what you're doing is bad. But you really have to get a clearer idea as to what JSA are and how you are connected to them, otherwise you will throw around terms like koryu and kenjutsu without apparently understanding what they mean, and that doesn't help communication.

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#286058 - 09/22/06 06:42 AM Re: No Pain no Gain [Re: splice]
Marishiten Offline
illegitimate Onna Bugeisha

Registered: 09/17/06
Posts: 92
Loc: Australia, NSW
Quote:

It's the connection that is the root of all of it, not the techniques, not the training.




Maybe, but all this lineage and connection business is largely politics.

Quote:

It defines how you do your techniques. It defines how you train. Two groups connected to the same root may train differently, but they can both be traditional and legitimate if they've both been licensed by the soke and train according to his wishes.




It doesnít assure anything. It makes it more LIKELY to be correct, but not necessarily.
For now Iím assuming that my sensei is licensed because I have no reason to think otherwise. In that case, there should be no problem then.

Quote:

You seem to be loosely defining and understanding some terms and throwing them around authoritatively. You say your style is traditional koryu, yet you don't know how you're connected to it beyond your teacher. You say you think kenjutsu means 'more violent kendo'.




Iím not really defining anything. I have never said my style is traditional koryu, in fact I never even used the word koryu myself to begin with. I was talking about methodology.
As for my Ďdefinitioní of kenjutsu, for peteís sake I thought the Ďdefinitioní itself would come across as not being Ďseriousí. It is not a DEFINITION, itís the way I THINK of it, itís also called a sense of humour.

Most importantly of all, I am not doing this to swing a sword around or to socialize. If I was there to socialize I would have quit long ago, due to the fact that Iím the only girl there and the guys were very hard to Ďbreak intoí, ie cold professionalism but nothing else. Things have changed now though because of my persistence.

But no, the reason Iím there is, simply put, because I love it. It has strengthened my weakest personal points and I feel better than I ever have in my life. Iíve gained confidence and it has developed my character. It has made me more appreciative of Japanese culture, the sword itself, and the capabilities of my own body and that of other people. There are so many integrated elements that are hard to put into words, but itís amazing that something so seemingly straight-forward and physical could influence me on so many levels.

Itís true that I havenít done much research Ė most of what I know I have picked up over time through training. Donít get me wrong, Iím very interested to learn, but being a university student and living in Australia doesnít exactly open up a lot of resources to learn from. I try to avoid talking about matters I know little about. You may think that I was throwing words like Ďkoryuí around because thatís the impression you got, which led you to debate my senseiís lineage. That was never my intent however.

But to cap it all off, I have never done MA in my life up until a year ago. People have done it for much longer and still donít know the difference between Karate and Tae Kwon Do, or worse still, between Karate or anything ELSE.

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#286059 - 09/22/06 09:11 AM Re: No Pain no Gain [Re: Marishiten]
splice Offline
Member

Registered: 01/24/05
Posts: 230
Loc: Ottawa, ON
Quote:

I have never said my style is traditional koryu, in fact I never even used the word koryu myself to begin with.




God, you just don't stop. Again, a direct quote from you:

Quote:

I'll just write word-for-word what it says on my certificate:
Koryuu Bu-Jutsu, Batto-Jutsu, tatsumi ryu, Muso Shinden ryu iai-do. This is what I train in




There's no point in arguing with you. You say things, then you claim you didn't say them, then it's not what you meant, all a big pointless circle. You like what you do? Keep on doing it. Just don't expect to be taken seriously here when you speak about traditional training yet fail to verify the most basic facts about the authenticity of what you're doing.

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#286060 - 09/22/06 09:26 AM Re: No Pain no Gain [Re: Marishiten]
iaibear Offline
Veteran

Registered: 08/24/05
Posts: 1304
Loc: upstate New York
A few years back when I was still attending seminars regularly I was in Guelph, Ontario. They have a fine Iaido group which practices Muso Jikiden Iaido as an affiliate of Zen Nihon Kendo Renmei. They considered Muso Shinden to be koryu. Go figure.

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#286061 - 09/22/06 12:29 PM Re: No Pain no Gain [Re: Marishiten]
cxt Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/11/03
Posts: 5823
Loc: USA
Marshiten

"I don't see how differing termenology raises red flags."

Think of it like this.

Your looking to hire a plumber---you ask him to hand you an Allen Wrench--he looks at you blankly--you point to the wrench in question and he says "Oh, THAT --I call that a jifflin rod."

You DON"T hire people that have no clue what commonly used tools are called in their OWN profession.

I rock climb and I DON'T climb with people that don't know what I mean when I say "toss me a biner."

Most arts and hobbies--esp martial ones, have specific vocabulary and jargon.

If people are not using it correctly--if they have radically different definations of commonly used terms--it points to lack of experiecne and perhaps deeper errors.

In this case-- koryu seldom use any sort of solo kata--the way a karate-ka would.
In koryu "kata" means a two person exercise--period.
The mixing of "meanings" in the word implies lack of understanding as to koryu as a whole.

Oh, BTW--the "why" of having "koryu bujutsu" on your certs is that implies that you study ALL aspects of ALL classical japanese martial arts.
Legit folks are usually more accruate about what exactatly they teach--and what exactly the certs mean.
Again, taken by itself--maybe not such a big deal.
Taken in context however---its a "red flag."

Like many folks have said before---if what your describing is accurate--then there are some "red flags" here.

Instead of thinking of the excellent information and advice you have been getting as some sort of personal attacks---think of it as its meant.

Its meant to try and help you.

Its meant to get you to research more about your style.

Its meant to get you to do some hard thinking.

Bottom line here is that if you enjoy what you do--you should do it--I would.

But you should do so with a full and complete understanding that what your doing may-MAY, not be koryu at all.

Why call it something that its not?


Edited by cxt (09/22/06 12:36 PM)
_________________________
I did battle with ignorance today.......and ignorance won. Huey.

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#286062 - 09/22/06 04:45 PM Re: No Pain no Gain [Re: cxt]
Charles Mahan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/14/04
Posts: 2502
Loc: Denton, Tx, USA
Quote:

In this case-- koryu seldom use any sort of solo kata--the way a karate-ka would.
In koryu "kata" means a two person exercise--period.
The mixing of "meanings" in the word implies lack of understanding as to koryu as a whole.





With regards to the specific quote I highlighted... I think you are being a little too narrow there. The term kata is used to refer to solo exercises in many koryu. Especially in the iai ryu-ha. The branch of MJER that I study is considered koryu, and while the term waza is preferred, kata is frequently used to refer to the solo forms which make up the majority of the training exercises in the curriculum.
_________________________
Iaido - Breaking down bad habits, and building new ones.

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#286063 - 09/22/06 05:10 PM Re: No Pain no Gain [Re: Charles Mahan]
cxt Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/11/03
Posts: 5823
Loc: USA
Charles

Maybe.

But in context with the discussion its more or less accurate.

While solo exercises may exist--the word "kata" in koryu speak is generally understood to refer to a 2 person exercise.
Which is in direct contrast to what "kata" is taken to mean in say karate--where it refers to a solo exercise.

This mix-up in terms is what I was trying to point out.

(In karate terms "bunkai" might-MIGHT come closer to the koryu meaning of kata.)

Besides I already dealt with and excepeted the iai-jutsu/do stuff.
Iai by its very nature leans rather heavily to solo practice.

I already established that.


Edited by cxt (09/22/06 05:11 PM)
_________________________
I did battle with ignorance today.......and ignorance won. Huey.

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#286064 - 09/22/06 07:59 PM Re: No Pain no Gain [Re: cxt]
mercierarmory Offline
Member

Registered: 09/26/05
Posts: 44
Loc: Lincoln, Nebraska
All I was asking for before, was a possible link to a website of the school. Even an article or some sort of web presence. Perhaps with a school website (full of information) it could clarify some of the questions we have.

Is there one?
Mike

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#286065 - 09/22/06 11:58 PM Re: No Pain no Gain [Re: cxt]
Charles Mahan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/14/04
Posts: 2502
Loc: Denton, Tx, USA
Chris,

Since you don't approve of us using kata to refer to our solo exercises, what do you suppose we should begin calling our solo exercises then?

Are you perchance suggesting that MJER is not koryu? The official curriculum of MJER contains more than 40 odd solo forms frequently referred to as either kata or waza. So you must be suggesting that MJER is not koryu. We are not the only koryu ryu-ha that use the term in this fashion. I would not be at all suprised to find out that some of the koryu kenjutsu ryuha use the term when referring to solo forms as well.

Kata simply means prearranged training exercise. It does not imply a two person exercise.

I will agree that JSA kata are usually very different than karate kata though. Usually much much shorter. Probably a reflection of the idea that JSA fights are over VERY quickly.


Edited by Charles Mahan (09/22/06 11:59 PM)
_________________________
Iaido - Breaking down bad habits, and building new ones.

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