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Prince Loeffler
14th May 2006, 20:39
Found this recently. I would love to hear from the Kyokushinkai guys thier thought of this statements. I don't have Oyama Biogragraphy that this site mentioned.

http://crane.50megs.com/index6j.htm

So the question is / are :

Is this true ?

Note: Those without popup blockers I will post it below:
_____________________________________________________________


Taiji & the God of Karate

太极拳与空手之神

The late Sosai Mas Oyama, Founder of Kyokushin Karate.

It is a little known fact that the legendary Founder of Kyokushin Karate, Sosai (Grandmaster) Oyama admitted to only one single defeat in his entire life as a Karateka. The man is whom the martial arts world call the "God Hand" or the "God of Karate". He is a man who easily sliced through bottle-necks, broke rocks with his knife hand, killled bulls with a single blow, defeated hundereds of martial art masters & professional fighters, boxers, wrestlers all over Japan & the whole world. Yet in his biography this invincible Karateka revealed that he could not beat one frail old man - an old man who practices "Taijiquan", the art of the Grand Ultimates.


According to his own narration, after he defeated the formidable Muaythai figher "Black Cobra" in Thailand, he travelled to Hong Kong to meet a certain Mr Chen, a man rumoured to be a great Taiji master. He knew in his heart that Chinese Martial Science is the source of all Karate, & he regarded this trip as a return to the source, his challenge to the fountain-head. His first impression of Mr Chen was quite bad. As it turned out, Mr Chen was a frail old man who looked more suitable for an old folks home rather than teaching the famous chinese martial art there. After the usual pleasantries, Oyama asked to leave, thinking that this old man would never accept his challenge to Taiji. But to his amazement, Mr Chen took the initiative & asked Oyama to spar with him. Seeing doubt in his eyes, Mr Chen said,"Are you not here to find out what is Taiji? Here is your chance." So Oyama accepted, thinking that he could finish off this old man soon enough. But he was very wrong.


The long duel that followed was like a classic battle between the snake & the crane. Mr Chen was able to neutralize all the Karate attacks he could deliver, using smooth circular, arc-like movement & techniques. On the other hand, when Mr Chen counter-attacked, it was with a force that could not have come from a man his age.

It was all Oyama could do to evade them, using linear, sometimes awkward movements. Eventually, seeing no sign of fatigue in the old man, & having exhausted all his techniques, Oyama gave up, admitting that he could not beat Mr Chen. Mr Chen laughed & thanked Oyama for giving him such a great workout, inviting him to stay for a few days to learn more. Oyama asked to be left alone for a short while to contemplate this defeat. Later, when one of

Mr Chen's students came to invite him for tea, he was quite surprised to see tears rolling down Oyama's cheeks. In his own words, Oyama said,"These tears are not tears shed for losing; they are tears of appreciation. Appreciation that my Karate still has an infinite amount of space to grow. It is a space that is opened up by none other than the chinese martial art called Taiji".


After that he stayed with Mr Chen for a period, learning the principles of Taiji. Being the genius that he is, he managed to grasp them quickly, & was able to defeat Mr Chen's most senior student at the end of this period of study. From then on, after his return to Japan, Kyokushin Karate was known to reveal a certain Taiji flavour in its form & techniques.

After his passing in 1994, however, these Taiji principles were lost in Kyokushin. The student who was able to learn them the most was Ashihara, one of his most gifted students. But due to some problems he left Kyokushin to form his own "Fighting Karate" in 1980. Ashihara died earlier than Oyama by 2 years. The only person left now who still uses these Taiji principles in his Karate is Ninomiya, who also left Kyokushin to form his own style, known as "Enshin Karate", the Heart of the Circle. It is better known as "Sabaki". Ninomiya learned under both Oyama & Ashihara. He is currently teaching in the United States & organises the Sabaki Challenge yearly.


Another famous Shotokan Karate master, who is also dead now, once remarked to his student that,"Taiji is a very powerful art, but it is an art for superhumans. For us ordinary humans it is better to stick to Karate." This is said after he witnessed a Taiji master shake an entire wooden house with deceivingly light palm strikes to one of its pillars. But let us come back to the subject of Taijiquan.

I'm sure all of us have heard legends & myths of certain Taiji masters winning effortlessly against challengers of other styles, or performing superhuman feats using internal power - Chi. How many of those stories are true? It is hard to tell, surely.

The art of Taiji is a paradox for Chinese Martial Science. Afterall, it is something invented by an Immortal (Zhang Sanfeng).. if the legend is true, that is. But even if it is false, there are still millions of people around the world practicing the 5 main styles of Taiji, & the so-called masters also number thousands.

Out of these millions how many can actually attain the efficiency level of Mr Chen? Perhaps only 1 in 10000 can. The rest of the 9999 probably can't use Taiji to defend themselves even if their lives depended on it. Thus there's a saying in Taiji,"Practicioners of Taiji can't step out of the house for less than 10 years." My Baji Grandmaster, Liu Yunqiao also once remarked that, "In Baji, either you are a General of men or you are nothing at all." While I'm no General of men, I believe this is even more so for the millions practicing Taijiquan. That is not to say that Taiji is inefficient, but rather, it is so profound a martial art that it is only useful in the hands of a rare few. Maybe true Taiji is almost dead today.

Compared to Muaythai, Karate, or even Sanda, in which 8 out of 10 practicioners will be able to fight in a short time, I think Taiji is something which is more suitable for the museum. That is true when refering to Taiji as a martial science, not as a health exercise for old folks. The reader may disagree, but then you must ask yourself: What am I learning Taiji for? If it is for practical purposes then you must again ask: Am I one of those superhumans? If so, good luck in your Taiji path, but if not, it is wiser to just give it up & go for something direct & simple; which will certainly lead you closer to the truth behind Chinese Martial Science.

gmanry
15th May 2006, 05:06
I was told this story by my mentor in Kyokushin back in 1990. He didn't mention the name, but the essence was the same. I had always assumed the "taiji" master was really Kanichi Saiwa a Taikiken man (hsing yi, form and will boxing) who was apparently well respected by Sosai Oyama and many of his senior students.

Interesting that it was a man from Chen. Chen taiji is very different from the typical Yang and Wu styles so popular today. I have had the opportunity to see a performance of Chen taiji by a person that some consider to be a true lineage disciple. His movement was very interesting and quite fast.

The story I heard was that after their match, the master told Oyama that he was very strong and skilled and with his (the master's) techniques could be invincible in his martial arts.

Of course, a lot of things in Sosai Oyama's biography are believed to be very played up from the real story. For example, it was my understanding that he never fought in Thailand, but it was Nakamura (now of Seido Karate) who defeated the Thai champion of the time (and there is some argument as to whether it was THE champion or a more regional favorite).

None the less, Oyama was a man who pursued his budo with the aim of making it efficient and effective. He was not interested in preserving lineages or set ways and this set him apart from his contemporaries.

Bob van Tuyn
16th May 2006, 11:03
I think almost all the answer can be found in the thread ďMas Oyama for realĒ by malty.

Like I wrote there, people and especially in the east love to make MA legends bigger then they are. Mas Oyama was a great MA-tist and promoter of karate and the founder of the style I now practise. But he was no superman who could kill with one blow, shoot beams from his eyes and had mystical powers.

People should she him as human with his ďgreatnessĒ and also his flaws and not as ďKARATE GOD etc.Ē

Just my opinion

edg176
16th May 2006, 21:35
Glenn,
Yes I assumed it was Sawai also. Quite a number of kyokushin folks ended up doing taikiken, it is my understanding.

Oyama also spent some time with Yoshida Kotaro. And I think that Matsui, the present Kancho also trained in Daito Ryu prior to Sagawa's death.

Prince Loeffler
18th May 2006, 05:43
People should she him as human with his ďgreatnessĒ and also his flaws and not as ďKARATE GOD etc.Ē

Just my opinion

When I first started in Karate, I've always thought Sosai Oyama was this mystical superman of Karate. Althought I never really got to train that much in Kyukoshin as I went to a different style. Even to this day, I think Sosai Oyama attitude towards his karate is still a cut above the rest.

Bob van Tuyn
18th May 2006, 11:27
I agree, he had a good approach to karate (in my opinion to any MA for that fact). He focused on the practical side of karate, donít talk about fighting to learn it, also do it!! If a technique works use it, if it doesnít donít etc. This is what attracted me to kyokushin, it has the budo aspect as well as the fighting.

But what I canít stand is people that always elevate MA-tist to extreme heights. Just as they did with Bruce Lee and every other person that made a mark in MA-history.

Focus on the person and on the art the represent and not on the stories around them. God hand technique, KI-blast, extraordinaire mental powers etc etc etc. (If you like that just by a Marvel strip :))

gmanry
18th May 2006, 14:18
But....but....but.....

Who will teach me to go to Super Sayajin level 3.....:(

trevorg
23rd July 2006, 21:33
I agree, he had a good approach to karate (in my opinion to any MA for that fact). He focused on the practical side of karate, donít talk about fighting to learn it, also do it!! If a technique works use it, if it doesnít donít etc. This is what attracted me to kyokushin, it has the budo aspect as well as the fighting.

But what I canít stand is people that always elevate MA-tist to extreme heights. Just as they did with Bruce Lee and every other person that made a mark in MA-history.

Focus on the person and on the art the represent and not on the stories around them. God hand technique, KI-blast, extraordinaire mental powers etc etc etc. (If you like that just by a Marvel strip :))

In your earlier post you said that he did/could not kill with one strike yet it is well documented that he did so in his early days.Anyway, his ability is well recorded in words and visuals to see that this man really was godhand.

People are human beings and it is natural for them to mystisize great men to even greater heights. Thats what makes a legend. Everyone though has their failings but someone like Mas Oyama spent his life striving to improve his character and so you can forgive any failings.

As to Chen tai chi, or grand ultimate fist. Although a Kyokushin long term student I take the time to study other styles and I have had the privilege of training with Master Michael Wong and his Chen style is utterly devastating. The form is fast and dynamic. You can check out what he does on his DVDs. Sifu Wong is firm in his belief that grand ultimate fist is the most supreme of Chinese empty hand fighting arts.

Footnote: Mas Oyama called his karate "budo karate" when criticised by more those more traditional. "Warrior karate".

Yours in budo
Trevor Gilbert

Bob van Tuyn
24th July 2006, 11:35
Many people can kill with one strike, for that you need not to be a ďGOD HANDĒ. Several times a year in Holland you read that a kid gets killed on a Saturday nights out. They get in a fight get one lucky punch to the head and or neck and it is over.

With my post on this thread and others I just wanted to make clear that everything that is written and documented is not true. Especially thing written on people that left their mark on MA history (deservingly).

So if there is a documented event that shows that Mas Oyama defeated a men just by looking at hem, and the bystanders mentioned some sort of ki energy emitted by his eyes I take that story with a ton of salt.

Just as his fights with bulls. Iíve read so many conflicting stories I canít count them. (horns that have been pre cut etc. etc.)

The thing is for me Mas Oyama does not need to be the strongest fighter ever, that can split rocks and kill bull just by looking. He is the founder of a solid fighting system that I enjoy every day. He deserves the respect even without all those superhuman qualities.

Nothing more nothing less.

Kaori Iida
24th July 2006, 13:59
I was to understand that Taiji = Tai Chi and Baji is something entirely different.

Anyways, I've read that Chen's Taijichuan more closely resembles Bajiquan, which is famous for it's powerful techniques.

trevorg
7th August 2006, 12:32
Many people can kill with one strike, for that you need not to be a ďGOD HANDĒ. Several times a year in Holland you read that a kid gets killed on a Saturday nights out. They get in a fight get one lucky punch to the head and or neck and it is over.

With my post on this thread and others I just wanted to make clear that everything that is written and documented is not true. Especially thing written on people that left their mark on MA history (deservingly).

So if there is a documented event that shows that Mas Oyama defeated a men just by looking at hem, and the bystanders mentioned some sort of ki energy emitted by his eyes I take that story with a ton of salt.

Just as his fights with bulls. Iíve read so many conflicting stories I canít count them. (horns that have been pre cut etc. etc.)

The thing is for me Mas Oyama does not need to be the strongest fighter ever, that can split rocks and kill bull just by looking. He is the founder of a solid fighting system that I enjoy every day. He deserves the respect even without all those superhuman qualities.

Nothing more nothing less.

Not disagreeing with you, but you only have to look at video clips of him fighting bulls to see what he could do. It is also well documented that he sadly killed a man with one blow and was taken by the police but released as it was an act of self defence.
Where did the killing/breaking from looking at something come from ? never heard of it, and its nuts anyway.

I am not suggesting that anyone who deals a one blow death should be called godhand, it is immoral, but Oyama was given that nickname in the Japanese press because of his one strike and its finished ability.

Trevor

Bob van Tuyn
11th August 2006, 11:10
Iíve watched several short movies clips of him fighting bulls (donít know if it is the same clip cut in pieces). And to be honest they only make me laugh. Like Jon Bluming told Mr Oyama at the time, donít show these films in Europe, in Japan they will cheer for you in awe in Europe they will laugh at it. There is nothing special to see on those clips, except a man handling a bovine by holding it by the horns and dragging it to the ground.

Just search on the net Oyama, Kyokushin etc. and you will read stories of him staring people into submission, him killing 53 bulls etc etc etc etc. I know that Oyama was a great promoter and salesperson for his style (there is nothing bad in that). This means he played perfect into stories about him that circulated at the time. I take these stories with a ton of salt.

Just read the stories of the people that where close to him and trained with him (and if possible talk to them). They give a better picture. A great martial artist that created a very strong and solid style, and a man and style that had a great positive effect on karate.

You can also search for some interesting reading in the E-budo archives.

trevorg
19th August 2006, 17:27
Iíve watched several short movies clips of him fighting bulls (donít know if it is the same clip cut in pieces). And to be honest they only make me laugh. Like Jon Bluming told Mr Oyama at the time, donít show these films in Europe, in Japan they will cheer for you in awe in Europe they will laugh at it. There is nothing special to see on those clips, except a man handling a bovine by holding it by the horns and dragging it to the ground.

Just search on the net Oyama, Kyokushin etc. and you will read stories of him staring people into submission, him killing 53 bulls etc etc etc etc. I know that Oyama was a great promoter and salesperson for his style (there is nothing bad in that). This means he played perfect into stories about him that circulated at the time. I take these stories with a ton of salt.

Just read the stories of the people that where close to him and trained with him (and if possible talk to them). They give a better picture. A great martial artist that created a very strong and solid style, and a man and style that had a great positive effect on karate.

You can also search for some interesting reading in the E-budo archives.

See you've got a lot of respect for the founder of your system then.

As to bulls, why dont you step into the ring and fight one if you think its all a load of old tosh. I've been doing Kyokushin for 34 years and I certainly wouldnt.
Trevor Gilbert

Trevor Johnson
19th August 2006, 18:10
Like Jon Bluming told Mr Oyama at the time, donít show these films in Europe, in Japan they will cheer for you in awe in Europe they will laugh at it. There is nothing special to see on those clips, except a man handling a bovine by holding it by the horns and dragging it to the ground.

Maybe because, if I recall correctly, things like this were used as manhood rituals and such, as far back as the early Celts. Plus things like the running of the bulls and such.

Bob van Tuyn
22nd August 2006, 12:03
Hereby a few video clips with Mas Oyama some are very nice and interesting (also of the bull fight).

RE: ďSee you've got a lot of respect for the founder of your system then.Ē (Trevor Gilbert)

Donít know if this is mend sarcastic (difficult when English is not your native language) but of course I have great respect for the founder of kyokushin as I think everybody has on this forum. I think it is just in my Dutch nature to relativate stories regarding persons. Try not to see the legend or the media picture that is created but to find stories on him by people who met him and trained with him. (This ďusuallyĒ gives a more realistic picture).


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4nhv6eDCrTY

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QDTkKMwEp0c

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FteS-NxwXsA

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bh8FfmE7sqs

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0UExar03RNY

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6MapyZq4YIo

trevorg
22nd August 2006, 22:13
Hereby a few video clips with Mas Oyama some are very nice and interesting (also of the bull fight).

RE: ďSee you've got a lot of respect for the founder of your system then.Ē (Trevor Gilbert)

Donít know if this is mend sarcastic (difficult when English is not your native language) but of course I have great respect for the founder of kyokushin as I think everybody has on this forum. I think it is just in my Dutch nature to relativate stories regarding persons. Try not to see the legend or the media picture that is created but to find stories on him by people who met him and trained with him. (This ďusuallyĒ gives a more realistic picture).


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4nhv6eDCrTY

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QDTkKMwEp0c

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FteS-NxwXsA

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bh8FfmE7sqs

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0UExar03RNY

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6MapyZq4YIo

Thanks, I've seen those.
The point I am making is that it is easy to criticise a founder of a system (a) when he has passed on (b) from the experiences of others.
I am aware that Mr Bluming has an immense reputation and was highly regarded by Sosai, but please dont corrupt the legend.

Dictionary definition of legend: One who is renowned for outstanding deeds or qualities, whether real or fictitious.

Trevor Gilbert

Bob van Tuyn
23rd August 2006, 11:18
Trevor,

The point I'm making is that what I have written about Sosai has nothing to do with criticising. In my opinion people only down garde a great man like Mas Oyama by giving to much into the stories surrounding him (with stories I mean those with a high manga/fantasy level).

I know that this also irritated some of Sosai earlier students . They see the founder of their system and a person they consider like a father being depicted as some manga character.

As for corrupting a legend: legends are important and inspiring as long as people know your posted definition: "One who is renowned for outstanding deeds or qualities, whether real or FICTITIOUS"

People should not get upset if people want to find the man behind the legend and in the proses dispell or question some of the stories surrounding him. After all, I think more people are interested in the man than in the legend? Aspacially people who practise Kyokushin?

trevorg
23rd August 2006, 13:54
Trevor,

The point I'm making is that what I have written about Sosai has nothing to do with criticising. In my opinion people only down garde a great man like Mas Oyama by giving to much into the stories surrounding him (with stories I mean those with a high manga/fantasy level).

I know that this also irritated some of Sosai earlier students . They see the founder of their system and a person they consider like a father being depicted as some manga character.

As for corrupting a legend: legends are important and inspiring as long as people know your posted definition: "One who is renowned for outstanding deeds or qualities, whether real or FICTITIOUS"

People should not get upset if people want to find the man behind the legend and in the proses dispell or question some of the stories surrounding him. After all, I think more people are interested in the man than in the legend? Aspacially people who practise Kyokushin?

My view is that at that level you cannot differentiate between the man and the legend.

The only reason I responded was when you said:
"Iíve watched several short movies clips of him fighting bulls (donít know if it is the same clip cut in pieces). And to be honest they only make me laugh".

I dont think I've ever taken that view about any of my teachers, especially the founder of a system, no matter what I might think privately about them. They are my teacher and I came to them to learn, not to laugh at them.

Trevor Gilbert

Bob van Tuyn
24th August 2006, 11:02
o.k. clear,

I see what you mean and I think that is just a thing where we differ. I can only speak for myself in that matter off course.

For me that boils down to the following:
I have great respect for any MA-tist (for that matter sportsmen) that has proven him/herself. Sosai as founder of a system that I practise and love I have a special weak spot.

But I donít go as far as some people do in MA, sports, or religion to the point that you could not speak about a person in a matter that goes against the general few of that person. (this is also cultural I think)

I will not (to my definition) speak bad or criticise these persons (to the definition of other people maybe I do).

In case of Sosai I have (also on this forum) spoken abut his alleged ties with Yakusa and questioned some if the stories that surround him. To some people it is almost blasphemy to do so (especially those that live to strict budo philosophy).

I respect that way of thinking, but it is not the way I see thinks, but luckily we donít need to have the same points of few in this world. Makes it only more interesting

powerof0ne
24th August 2006, 17:32
o.k. clear,

I see what you mean and I think that is just a thing where we differ. I can only speak for myself in that matter off course.

For me that boils down to the following:
I have great respect for any MA-tist (for that matter sportsmen) that has proven him/herself. Sosai as founder of a system that I practise and love I have a special weak spot.

But I donít go as far as some people do in MA, sports, or religion to the point that you could not speak about a person in a matter that goes against the general few of that person. (this is also cultural I think)

I will not (to my definition) speak bad or criticise these persons (to the definition of other people maybe I do).

In case of Sosai I have (also on this forum) spoken abut his alleged ties with Yakusa and questioned some if the stories that surround him. To some people it is almost blasphemy to do so (especially those that live to strict budo philosophy).

I respect that way of thinking, but it is not the way I see thinks, but luckily we donít need to have the same points of few in this world. Makes it only more interesting

I have the same perspective because I have heard some crazy stories about some of the founders of the styles I have studied. When I was younger I was gullable enough to believe all of them but over the years have put a few things together. I definitely still respect them because they were obviously great instructors but too many styles place the founder on a huge pedestal.

trevorg
24th August 2006, 21:45
o.k. clear,

I see what you mean and I think that is just a thing where we differ. I can only speak for myself in that matter off course.

For me that boils down to the following:
I have great respect for any MA-tist (for that matter sportsmen) that has proven him/herself. Sosai as founder of a system that I practise and love I have a special weak spot.

But I donít go as far as some people do in MA, sports, or religion to the point that you could not speak about a person in a matter that goes against the general few of that person. (this is also cultural I think)

I will not (to my definition) speak bad or criticise these persons (to the definition of other people maybe I do).

In case of Sosai I have (also on this forum) spoken abut his alleged ties with Yakusa and questioned some if the stories that surround him. To some people it is almost blasphemy to do so (especially those that live to strict budo philosophy).

I respect that way of thinking, but it is not the way I see thinks, but luckily we donít need to have the same points of few in this world. Makes it only more interesting

I see no harm in discussion about stories, real or imagined, after all that is what democratic freedom of speech is about. In any case we all like discussion, so in that sense I agree with you.

I just couldnt bring myself to laugh about someone I have a special soft spot for, indeed love as many Kyokushin students do for Sosai.

Different strokes,I guess.

Trevor Gilbert