View Full Version : Shinkendo Book, nine planets

Fred East
18th June 2001, 11:50
Hello all
This Book by Obata Soke is certainly a must have. The more you study it the more you will gain from it, more than just the words seem to convey the first few times around.
I have a small problem with my own understanding of a couple of things in chapter four starting page 31, which I hope Nathan sensei can help me with.
I understand the concept of the 12 precepts of the 9 planets strategem I think, but I don't seem to be able to find 9 planets around the 'shin', only eight, or is 'shin' also a planet in this pictogram? Also why are kan, ki and sei spaced outward of the others?
Also the different kanji for KAN stumped me for a while although I realise now that they are the same pronunciations for two different meanings!!??
This is not a criticism of the book in any way, but just my lack of vision and understanding.

Fred East

Nathan Scott
12th September 2001, 22:37
Hello Mr. East,

Nice to hear from you. Sorry for the slow reply, but this subject is not an easy one to explain.

Your observations are correct. However, please keep in mind that in the preface of the book it says:

"All major aspects of shinkendo are introduced in this first volume. However, because of space limitations, each of these aspects will need to be isolated and thoroughly explained in other books to follow."

This first book of shinkendo was intended to be an overview - providing an outline of the art's curriculum. To really understand deeper teachings like the hachido or kuyo junikun will require direct transmission from a qualified instructor.

That being said...

A copy of the image being referred to can be found here (since we can't post images here):


The nine planets do include the middle "shin" - so you have eight planets surrounding the "shin planet". This is symbolic of the solar system, though technically the sun is considered a "star" - not a planet.

There are two different kanji for "kan" that sound the same but have different meanings. One refers to distance, while the other refers to the human's senses.

As far as the kanji that fall outside the kuyo image, this is where it gets a little complicated.

The "solar system" used to disseminate this part of our philosophy represents an example of a complex interaction between varying elements - ideally co-existing in a perfect balance. As long as each element remains balanced in relation to the others, the whole can exist in a natural state of harmony. That is the basic idea, and the kuyo specific strategem can be used for improving one's life, or, used to evaluate a given circumstance, etc. The 12 "elements" tend to be universal factors, that can be applied to a variety of subjects and issues.

So, the core kuyo junikun represent the ideal of an "internal state of harmony" - within oneself, within society, within the world, etc.

The external components you asked about represent surrounding, or external elements, that also must be considered and evaluated. Creating/maintaining a balance between the "internal state of harmony (sho)" and that of the "external state of harmony (dai)" is very important. One cannot exist comfortably in a society without taking into consideration how to "harmonize" with others. Those that do not harmonize with others tend to fall outside the norm and comfort level of the majority.

This is one example of "sho/dai" (small/large).

If referring to oneself as the internal elements, the external elements may be thought of as others in the dojo (or in society). If referring to the astral levels more literally implied in the kuyo symbol, the internal elements would be our solar system, and the external elements are the surrounding universe.

The "sei" kanji found to either side of the kuyo symbol represent the horizontal balance of the harmonized/balanced internal elements. However, the horizontal balance should not be confused as a linear line, but rather a horizontal plane, since the kuyo symbol/solor system is a three dimensional entity.

The "kan" kanji found above and below the kuyo symbol represent the linear vertical balance of the internal elements. Just as our planet spins on a horizontal axis, and pivots on a vertical axis, the solar system can be thought of in a similar manner.

Lastly, the "ki" kanji found in the four corners surrounding the kuyo symbol represents the energy that generates from the harmonized interaction of the solar system.

Think of it this way - positive energy is amplified from accord, while negative energy is amplified from discord. In other words, if one were to use the kuyo junikun to balance and improve one's life, they would be putting out positive energy, and as a result, receiving positive energy from others and nature.

The kuyo junikun is intended to be applied in conjunction with what we call "hachido", or, the eight ways - a supplemental set of principles that compliment the kuyo junikun.

So, this is one way to be happy and become "one with the universe"...

Hope this helps - it is not easy to explain such principles in writing!


Fred East
13th September 2001, 14:09
Good Day Nathan Sensei

Thanks very much for your detailed response to my query and it'll take a while for me to digest it all but initially I get the gist. Very well put together, on a difficult to descibe subject.
I look forward to the next book, as it seems from your reply that there is much more to come in these terms as well as technique.
I realise that being in contact with a qualified Shinkendo instructor is vital and we in Weston super Mare in the UK are working towards this as best we can.

Also I am sure I speak for all Brits. that we deeply sympathise with USA folk at this time and stand beside them, as always.

Thanks again

Fred East

Nathan Scott
13th September 2001, 17:16

I'll look forward to meeting you one of these days. Thanks for the kind thoughts.


14th September 2001, 12:49
Mr. East,

Will you be visiting Amsterdam for Obata sensei's seminar? I personally hope he will share some of his teachings on the hachido or kuyo junikun there.

Greetings from Amsterdam,

Nathan Scott
19th September 2001, 18:31

> Will you be visiting Amsterdam for Obata sensei's seminar?

Not that I know of! :)

I'm sure you all will have a great time though. I'd like to participate in one of the European trips one of these days.

I would make it a point of asking kaiso to elaborate on the kuyo junikun while he is there. I'm sure he wouldn't mind.


Fred East
20th September 2001, 07:55
Hi Blues and all interested in Shinkendo

I have hoped and planned to go to Amsterdam this year in the same way I met Obata Kaiso last year in France, but things are working against me at the moment.
Apart from meeting Kaiso and having excellent training under him for the weekend I met Brent Hire Sensei, the head of the European arm (as Blues will know). I hope if I cannot train with Kaiso this time that I will be able to do so at a later date or with Brent some other time.

Brent Hire comes across to me as extremely enthusiastic about the build up of Shinkendo in Europe and I expect to see it really take off in the future.

As Brent says, Kaiso may not be able to spend so much time in Europe in the future so those with an interest should take advantage of this year's visit, which is extensive.