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Aozora
17th September 2002, 19:36
Hi guys:

Can anyone tell me about the USA Jodo Federation? Is anyone a student of Sakimukai?

This is the first I've heard of him or the Jodo Federation, so either I'm behind or it's truly something new. Sakimukai claims a pretty extensive pedigree, so I'm wondering if anyone can confirm that.

USA Jodo Federation Web Site (http://www.usajodo.com/main.htm)

Brian Dunham
18th September 2002, 00:03
I have met Sakimukai-s, at one of his seminars that I attended. I used to know a couple guys who were his reps in New Hampshire, and they invited me to a (Iai/Jo) seminar he taught at their dojo,about 4 years ago. I don't really have much Jo (SMR) experience, so I won't comment on that aspect. As for the Iai portion of the seminar, I will try not to be too negative. He said at that time, that his koryu was Mugai Ryu, but that he also 'sometimes practiced a little Muso Shinden Ryu'. He proceeded to teach the small class what he said were MSR kata. I was the only one there with any Iai experience, so the others (mostly karate students using bokuto) didn't realize that Mae,Ushiro,and Kesa Giri were really ZNKR Seitei Iai. A couple years later, his website says "7th Dan and Menkyo in Muso Shinden Ryu". So, in just 2 years or so, from "sometimes practicing a little MSR", to 7th Dan and Menkyo. Now, about 2 additional years later, it says he is 9th Dan MSR. Hmmm. Pretty lofty claims.

Brian Dunham
Muso Shinden Ryu
San Shin Kai

Aozora
18th September 2002, 17:12
That's not exactly a ringing endorsement, Brian, but it's compatable with my gut feelings on this guy. Damn, to think the first post on Jo in a while might need to be moved to baffling budo...

Rob Alvelais
18th September 2002, 17:34
While not an expert in Jo, Mr. Sakamukai's karate is impeccable. I've seen his Jo demonstrations at Osamu Ozawa's tournament and at the USA Karate Federation's National Championships. (FWIW His Jo work was far above what I've seen in Aikido circles in the SF Bay Area. But, my "expertise is in Karate and not jo.) In any case, neither of these groups are prone to having "flakes" and charlatans take the stage at their events, since by doing so gives a tacit endorsement of the person or group demonstrating. Also, having close relationships with the princials of these organizations, they don't tolerate frauds well. That being said, Mr. Sakamukai is well respected in the WKF karate circles.

As for how one gets promoted so far so quickly, why is that so mysterious?

I've seen that situation in karate, why couldn't the situation exist in Jo or Iai or any other art? For example, a respected and well known karate instructor, who shal remain nameless, was a legitimate 5th dan in karate in a well respected, internationally known, karate organization. He resigned that organization and joined the organization of the son (and current soke)of the founder of one of the major Japanese karate styles. Upon his joining this group, he was awarded an 8th dan and Hanshi title in his new org (that of the founder's son). Neither fellow is a candidate for bad budo, neither are flakes and both have solid karate skills, although such a big jump (5th-8th dan) did raise some eyebrows. Often, only the person bestowing the rank knows the reasons for doing so, and these things can be quite capricious and arbitrary, but *legitimate* nonetheless.

Couldn't something similar have happened in this instance?


Rob

Rob Alvelais
18th September 2002, 21:41
Originally posted by Rob Alvelais
While not an expert in Jo, Mr. Sakamukai's karate is impeccable. <snip>
Rob

That should read, "While *I'm* not an expert in Jo, I can attest that Mr. Sakumukai's karate is impeccable."

Rob

Kenji Fujiwara
18th September 2002, 23:31
1. I was under the impression that there is no "soke" of shinto muso ryu, but rather several menkyo kiaden lines.

2. the maai in the graphic on the main page seems a bit off. Shidachi's strike seems to be too deep. Also note the kendo influence of uchidaci's posture. Is this graphic from shamen?

3. the postures of the models on the introduction page also seem a bit off. take a look at the placement of Uchidachi's lead foot and the aligmnment of Shidachi's hips and shoulders.

lastly, I have not practiced shinto muso ryu in a long time.

Aozora
19th September 2002, 16:06
Originally posted by Rob Alvelais

As for how one gets promoted so far so quickly, why is that so mysterious?

I've seen that situation in karate, why couldn't the situation exist in Jo or Iai or any other art?

Couldn't something similar have happened in this instance?


Rob

Not really sure why it couldn't. I would imagine if he has training in kobudo weapons, picking up jo would come naturally to him. And I don't doubt that his karate is impeccable as you say.

The thing is, in establishing the USA Jodo Federation, is this a real focus of Sakimukai's time, or just empire building to add to his name? If he is accomplished in jo, iai and karate, does he really have the time to devote to running a national organization devoted to one? I train in multiple arts and it's hard enough keeping up with training, much less trying to teach.

Since the soke of SMR Jodo died, there's no main stream of it anymore, and that can lead to dissolution of the art itself. Some might argue that the jo I practice (seitei no kata via kendo and Karl Geis) is a product of that. With the soke gone, it will be up to the menkyo to preserve the teachings of SMR and I was wondering where Sakimukai stood in relation to that. He seems to have a legitimate menkyo, and I was wondering if anyone had ever heard of him before.

Brian's post about his jump in iai ranking, plus the flashiness of his web site did set off soem alarm bells in me, and I was curious if that was the same in anyone else. It is distinctly possible I'm being entirely presumptious and wrong. If so I apologize. Like my post on the sword arts page, I'm endeavoring to stay away from "crusading" and add to the dialogue of positive aspects of budo. Who knows? If the Jodo Federation is legitimate, this may remove all doubt and help promote their organization. :D

Thanks for your post, Rob. BTW, you spelled Sakimukai two different ways in yuor posts. Not trying to be a grammar nazi, but making sure we're talking about the same person.

Rob Alvelais
19th September 2002, 17:11
Originally posted by Aozora



Thanks for your post, Rob. BTW, you spelled Sakimukai two different ways in yuor posts. Not trying to be a grammar nazi, but making sure we're talking about the same person.

Yeah, I didn't look at the website for the spelling.

His Jodo Fed has been around for some time. I remember seeing him in Las Vegas performing Jo waza and kata, maybe 14 or 15 years ago? While I'm not completely sure, I think it was extant then. Like I said, my interest is primarily in karate and not Jo or sword.

Rob

Jeff Hamacher
27th September 2002, 06:18
Originally posted by Aozora
>> Since the soke of SMR Jodo died, there's no main stream of it anymore, and that can lead to dissolution of the art itself. Some might argue that the jo I practice (seitei no kata via kendo and Karl Geis) is a product of that. <<

true that Shimizu Takaji-sensei was the last recognized soke, if you will, of SMR. without that central authority, each holder of menkyo-kaiden is free to propagate their own version or take on SMR, so in that sense the art will undergo some metamorphoses. on the other hand, i would argue that the Jodo no Seiteigata are not a product of the metamorphosis, exactly: Shimizu-sensei himself drew them up, along with the 12 kihon dousa, in order to provide a standard curriculum for practitioners of the various extant schools of jo. under the administration of the kendo federation, the Seiteigata are the curriculum for dan-grade and teacher certification testing (although candidates for higher grades must demonstrate some koryu no kata). the dissemination of the koryu techniques is largely left to each school, although they do participate in kendo federation demos and so forth.

>> He seems to have a legitimate menkyo, and I was wondering if anyone had ever heard of him before. <<

the question of a sudden granting of rank is kind of tricky, especially with koryu schools. the 4 menjo granted in SMR generally take a long time to reach, and although there are fixed goals for each level, part of the process is arbitrary and based on the teacher's judgment. if Sakimukai-sensei actually holds menkyo-kaiden, he likely would have had to train for a considerable length of time under a menkyo-kaiden holder. as an example, Phil Relnick-sensei began jo training under Shimizu-sensei in 1962 and was finally granted menkyo-kaiden in 1994 by Nishioka-sensei, the oldest actively teaching m-k.

notice the fact that Sakimukai-sensei and his teacher Shiokawa-sensei refer to their art as Shiokawa-ha Shindomuso-ryu. it seems that Shiokawa-sensei has decided to create his own branch of SMR and label himself soke of this art. i also wonder about labelling Otofuji-sensei the 26th soke of SMR. is this true? i know that some students (including our own headmaster), following the death of Shimizu-sensei, went to study with Otofuji-sensei, but not all.

i have to agree with Ken that the photo on the front page of the website struck me as a little strange. there are 3 or 4 points that my teacher would label outright wrong, and these are fundamental errors in his book. on the other hand, every teacher is entitled to their own approach.

Aozora
1st October 2002, 18:48
Thanks very much for your enlightening post, Jeff. As Jack sensei pointed out to me in PM's, there's still a lot I have left to learn.

A couple of questions. When did Shimizu-sensei formulate the seiteigata? Also, is it true he did it for the ZNKR, so they would have new problems to work with? If not, what is the real reason?
I am curious about the koryu curriculum. Is there a list of techniques available online?

Thanks in advance for your help!

Jack B
1st October 2002, 22:16
Now, Neil, I wasn't quite that harsh....

Shimizu sensei developed the Kihon around 1930, probably because he had a lot of beginning students in Tokyo and needed a way for them to train without killing each other.

Jodo Seiteigata was introduced to the ZNKR in 1968. Shindo Muso Ryu was the primary/only source in part because there were identified kihon to accompany the kata. The scuttlebutt was that he feared the extinction of koryu, what with kendo and judo so popular, and he wanted to ensure that the arts were publicized. Even today in ZNKR at 5th dan you are required to demonstrate kata from A koryu (not necessarily SMR) in addition to the compulsory seiteigata.

Jack Bieler

p.s. Hey moderator, this is a new thread!

Jeff Hamacher
2nd October 2002, 01:00
Originally posted by Aozora
>> I am curious about the koryu curriculum. Is there a list of techniques available online? <<

i've got a great site for you ... written entirely in japanese. if you and your computer can read the language, i'll send the link. i don't think i've come across such a site in english in my travels, but i haven't been looking that hard.