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Thread: Videos: DR Seishinkai - Hiden Mokuroku, Omote & Ura Kata

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    Question

    hello everyone,

    it's nice to have our Aikijujutsu board back up i'll start it off with a question. at Tozando (the iaito people) on their website they have various Daito-ryu tapes. they have a set that contains all 118 techniques of the Hiden Mokuroku that mentions the late Mr. Tokimune Takedas name. i emailed them and all the fellow could tell me was that his name was the only name on the boxes. has anyone seen these tapes to confirm this? i have had the pleasure of seeing tapes with Kondo sensei, various members from the Takumakai, Kodokai, and Roppokai, but never have i seen Mr. Takeda. any comments welcomed

    gambatte!!!

    ------------------
    Chris Covington
    Daito-ryu study group
    Shinkendo
    Kodokan judo

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    Smile

    Hi Chris,

    Stan Pranin has made an ever so subtle comment about these tapes at this AikidoJournal.com website. If you haven't already been to this site, go to the Bulletin Board and I believe you'll find posts about these tapes in the general Daito Ryu section.

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    Dear Kendo Guy,

    This is my first e-budo post. So...

    I have a tape of Ohgami, Kenkichi Hanshi (8th Dan) who was of the Takeda line of Daitoryu.

    Takeda - Hisa - Ohgami

    It is in Japanese, but very good quality and very good instruction. I think it is sold only in Japan (picked mine up on a training trip to Japan with Ohgami-Hanshi). I am going back to Japan next month (July) or in August. I would be happy to pick up a copy for you.

    Best Regards,
    Gary Gabelhouse

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    Default bad knees the cause

    I was informed that the sensei teaching the kata on the seishinkan tapes had bad knees and this affects him to this day. Not an excuse but it may explain a few things.
    Erin O'Neill

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    Default

    Hello,

    The tapes in question feature Mr. Arisawa Gunpachi (he demonstrates most the techniques, and is the one with the bad knees. To be honest, the knees are not the only issue in his performance) and Mr. Kobayashi Yoichi (SAD secretary) as uke. There are also introductions and a small amount of advanced techniques performed by Mr. Matsuo Sano.

    The tapes were produced by the "Nihon Daito ryu Aikibudo Seishinkai". I do not recall seeing any footage at all of Takeda Tokimune in them.
    Regards,
    Nathan Scott
    Nichigetsukai

    "Put strength into your practice, and avoid conceit. It is easy enough to understand a strategy and guard against it after the matter has already been settled, but the reason an opponent becomes defeated is because they didn't learn of it ahead of time. This is the nature of secret matters. That which is kept hidden is what we call the Flower."

    - Zeami Motokiyo, 1418 (Fūshikaden)

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    Default Seishinkai ura DVDs

    Hello all,

    Well, I think I am officially no longer worried about the Seishinkai group at all (not that they worried me much to begin with). Why? Well, it is my opinion that they will soon perish by their own swords and bad training habits.

    A little background: A friend from South Africa had purchased the Ura DVDs to see other Daito-ryu people. He burned copies and sent them to me. I would never purchase anything from the Seishinkai because I see this as support for them and their methods, but I have no problem with burned copies Anyway, on the Ikkajo ura DVD they do the hanza handachi with kodachi. As they train/demo I noticed that the young uke's sword keeps slipping about half way out of the saya. When the kata was over he'd scramble to put it back in. At first I thought it was a little funny, but it kept happening. Then the thing falls all the way out in mid throw! I'm sorry but this is dangerous and bad form! I'm assuming that the sword is mugito, but even then the kensaki can still hurt you! This was irresponsible and dangerous! I understand sometimes a blade might come loose but nearly every time?!? That is why there is post production editing and multiple takes. Small wood shims in the saya can keep it from falling out. I have done this to some of my training swords with good effect. Shame on Kato because he just sat their and watched like it was no big deal! He should be embarrassed to have his face on this video!

    So back to my original point... if they continue to train like this they will more then likely fall on top of their own blades and kill themselves. They will Darwin their own lineage. Sloppy. Sad.
    Christopher Covington

    Daito-ryu aikijujutsu
    Kashima Shinden Jikishinkage-ryu heiho

    All views expressed here are my own and don't necessarily represent the views of the arts I practice, the teachers and people I train with or any dojo I train in.

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    I guess you're right. Unfortunately the uke is a young and inexperienced guy, who, by the way, has stopped practicing Daito-ryu now.

    I also believe it wasn't a very good martial attitude in that case, but in my opinion, also Mr. Kondo's way of using the sword in his videos would make a kendoka smile.

    The point are the techniques in itself which you have certainly noted are very good.

    From my point of view, also seeing Mr. Kondo's students doing Yonkajo in idori (while kneeling) speaks for itself and we don't have to worry anymore about him (Yonkajo has only Tachiai - standing - techniques), BUT I believe this is not fruitful talk.

    If you will come to one of our Seminars in Europe or in the U.s., you can prove to yourself and to others that our training methods and seriousness is very martial and good.
    Giacomo Merello

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    Dear Giacomo,

    I knew you'd be on here!

    "If you will come to one of our Seminars in Europe or in the U.s., you can prove to yourself and to others that our training methods and seriousness is very martial and good."

    To be honest if I made a trip to Europe I wouldn't spend my time training Daito-ryu. I don't care how hard you train or how martial you think you are, I just hope you don't hurt yourselves.

    "From my point of view, also seeing Mr. Kondo's students doing Yonkajo in idori..."

    I'm sorry that Yonkajo sitting upsets you so much. At least no one will get cut or stabbed... but you're right this is fruitless.

    "I guess you're right. Unfortunately the uke is a young and inexperienced guy, who, by the way, has stopped practicing Daito-ryu now."

    I hope your organization has learned from these DVDs, how NOT to train with swords. All joking and bantering aside, using swords is dangerous as any of the kenjutsuka here know. Sloppiness like this should be avoided or someone could be hurt. In Daito-ryu we all deal with injuries, but a sword cut that is avoidable would really be a shame.
    Christopher Covington

    Daito-ryu aikijujutsu
    Kashima Shinden Jikishinkage-ryu heiho

    All views expressed here are my own and don't necessarily represent the views of the arts I practice, the teachers and people I train with or any dojo I train in.

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    Exclamation Threads Merged

    Me, I think making technical videos is a bad idea in any case...

    And BTW, thank God Ron Duncan hasn't figured out that you can edit mistakes out of video footage!

    Regards,
    Nathan Scott
    Nichigetsukai

    "Put strength into your practice, and avoid conceit. It is easy enough to understand a strategy and guard against it after the matter has already been settled, but the reason an opponent becomes defeated is because they didn't learn of it ahead of time. This is the nature of secret matters. That which is kept hidden is what we call the Flower."

    - Zeami Motokiyo, 1418 (Fūshikaden)

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    Default

    Regarding the Seishinkan / Daitokai tapes (available at www.budovideos.com) I can say that they are a ‘must-have’ for any Daito-ryu or Aikido student.

    1. Content – they contain the complete Hiden Mokuroku of the Daito-ryu curriculum, with such neat things as kasa waza (umbrella techniques), defense against jutte, introduction of multiple entangling waza, and so forth. Plus a small look at the sword work handed down from Takeda Sokaku, it does cover a WIDE range of techniques. Listed as 118 techniques of the HM, it has both omote (front) and ura (back) versions, some a subtle change of a pin, some a vastly different waza greatly expanding that 118.

    2. Quality – excellent video, well-positioned camera shots with multiple views and interspersed with ‘pointer’ comments on what is important, plus shots of students at various levels of skill doing the waza. The downside is the clear audio is all in Japanese.

    3. Performance – first look shows this is a more jujutsu slant on Daito-ryu. Not the subtle techniques of the ‘aiki’ Kodo branches, there is a feeling of a practical art you can use. Tokimune Takeda had been a policeman and one can see a stamp on this interpretation of “it has to work” on the curriculum. From Pranin’s work and accounts of people who had met him, physical conditioning (and callouses) were important to Tokimune’s view of the art. Perhaps future videos would have a more ‘aiki’ feel as other scrolls of Daito-ryu are looked at in depth.

    4. Conclusion – if you don’t have these there is a hole in your collection. For the Aikidoka, this is a great way to see the primary technique that Ueshiba used to convert to his version. Having watched the tapes and been on the mat with Kondo Sensei, certain simplifications have been introduced to Aikido that while they may be limiting the ‘combative’ factor certainly make it much, much safer for uke. For the Daito-ryu student, it is a chance to start to see the grand overview of this unique art. There are many styles out there but this is the ground floor that they (the mainstream and other branches) had to get thru. Some styles have strayed from the HM but it is the primer that Takeda Sokaku taught to the first-level student.

    5. Politics – this series is made by long-time students of Tokimune Takeda, late headmaster of Daito-ryu. With his passing it was transferred to Kondo Sensei, also a long-time student. Any petty comments regarding the techniques and performance reflect back to Tokimune Takeda who taught Daito-ryu to both parties. I have private video of Kondo Sensei teaching ippon-dori and flubs it while trying to get the student to get the waza. (How many times has that happened to us all with that white belt?) Does that mean he is untalented? I completely think not, especially having seen and felt his polished techniques. I have personally seen a very highly regarded American aikijujutsu master get ‘bit’ (that translates as a cut) when doing a weapon disarm against a live blade. My thoughts were, “Murphy got him” and great respect for him for going against a live sword and only getting a nick.

    While I may get them broken, I must give these tapes two thumbs up for a detailed look at one section of the fragmented Daito-ryu.

    Scott Harrington
    Co-author of “Aiki Toolbox: Exploring the Magic of Aikido
    S. Harrington

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    Default Some qualifiers...

    Regarding the Seishinkan / Daitokai tapes (available at www.budovideos.com) I can say that they are a ‘must-have’ for any Daito-ryu or Aikido student.
    Well, they are a "must-have" for anyone studying one of the Tokimune lines of Daito-ryu aikibudo. The names, organization of techniques, and execution of techniques is considerably different from the other branches of Daito-ryu from what I've seen and heard (I do have all these tapes BTW).

    Plus a small look at the sword work handed down from Takeda Sokaku, it does cover a WIDE range of techniques.
    Actually, it's more of a small look at Tokimune's version of Ono-ha itto-ryu, as he passed it down through to his Seishinkai students. By all accounts, it sounds like Sokaku's own sword method was in a whole other ball park than orthodox OIR, though it was likely based largely on his training in OIR.

    3. Performance – first look shows this is a more jujutsu slant on Daito-ryu. Not the subtle techniques of the ‘aiki’ Kodo branches, there is a feeling of a practical art you can use. Tokimune Takeda had been a policeman and one can see a stamp on this interpretation of “it has to work” on the curriculum. From Pranin’s work and accounts of people who had met him, physical conditioning (and callouses) were important to Tokimune’s view of the art. Perhaps future videos would have a more ‘aiki’ feel as other scrolls of Daito-ryu are looked at in depth.
    Perhaps, or perhaps not. In my opinion, the attempts I've seen at executing aiki techniques by any of Tokimune's students has been, well, extremely lacking. No disrespect intended, it is just mine (and others) opinion of that section of the art demonstrated. And BTW, there are police officers and military studying and teaching in all the lines of Daito-ryu, aiki or otherwise, and not all of them would agree that physical strength or callouses are complimentary to the execution of aiki techniques - or for that matter, even traditional jujutsu. Excess strain and tension in the shoulders, as evidenced in these and other "mainline" video tapes I've seen, is in fact simply a sign of undeveloped understanding, and/or inability to execute the techniques as they were designed. Size, strength and physical conditioning are all great things to have as backup when/if things go wrong, but they should not be present in senior instructors demonstrating techniques in a controlled atmosphere. If they are, then it might be time to turn the video camera off. Policeman or otherwise, budo training isn't real fighting, it's preparation for real fighting. Training in the dojo is a valuable opportunity to further develop your skills, not to habitually fall back on what you knew before you joined the dojo (AKA: "plan B").

    4. Conclusion – if you don’t have these there is a hole in your collection. For the Aikidoka, this is a great way to see the primary technique that Ueshiba used to convert to his version.
    While I still find the videos interesting over all, from a research of the various lines of DR standpoint, it's my observation that the earlier techniques of Ueshiba Sensei, as seen in early photographs (especially of the Noma Dojo), and even early footage/photos of Shioda Sensei, are in the same ball park, but different. You can of course see similarities in the Tokimune line techniques to early aikido, but as I say, I find the look and feel of the same types of techniques as performed by Ueshiba Sensei back in the 1930's to be different, and in fact, more in keeping with other DR jujutsu I've seen.

    In fact, properly executed aikido techniques (especially the big flowing stuff typically seen) would have to be executed using somewhat different operating principles than the Tokimune line of DR jujutsu techniques. So in this regard, the aikido world would get limited value from studying these tapes.

    Some styles have strayed from the HM but it is the primer that Takeda Sokaku taught to the first-level student.
    I've never heard or seen evidence to suggest that any other branch of Daito-ryu, aside from possibly the Takumakai (?) to some degree (at one point they were working together with Tokimune's systemization), used the transmission scrolls to teach from. Including Takeda Sokaku.

    5. Politics – this series is made by long-time students of Tokimune Takeda, late headmaster of Daito-ryu. With his passing it was transferred to Kondo Sensei, also a long-time student. Any petty comments regarding the techniques and performance reflect back to Tokimune Takeda who taught Daito-ryu to both parties.
    I agree with that. Sure, everyone makes mistakes. Budo is a lifetime path of learning, regardless of rank. However, if you are going to produce instructional video tapes, why not make sure you are adequately skilled in all the techniques being demonstrated, and edit out mistakes that might happen. You know, put your best foot forward, professionalism, etc. Though I have to admit, seeing the mistakes gives valuable insight as to the level of ability and understanding the various instructors have.

    While I may get them broken, I must give these tapes two thumbs up for a detailed look at one section of the fragmented Daito-ryu.
    They are an interesting, if not overly expensive, group of tapes. As are many of the DR publications out there. But they may not be the best invesment for everybody interested in Daito-ryu or aikido ...

    Regards,
    Last edited by Nathan Scott; 22nd September 2006 at 22:39.
    Nathan Scott
    Nichigetsukai

    "Put strength into your practice, and avoid conceit. It is easy enough to understand a strategy and guard against it after the matter has already been settled, but the reason an opponent becomes defeated is because they didn't learn of it ahead of time. This is the nature of secret matters. That which is kept hidden is what we call the Flower."

    - Zeami Motokiyo, 1418 (Fūshikaden)

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    Hello Giacomo, Mr. Harrington, Chris, etc..

    First, I would like to say the last post from Mr. Harrington was well done and I appreciate how unbiased it was written. Secondly, I would like to congratulate Giacomo and Certa Sensei in regards to the essay in Black Belt Magazine. Overall, I believe that too was nicely done.

    I do wish to point out one thing though, an issue that has popped up on a number of occasions. Giacomo has stated on several occasions that yonkajo techniques can be performed only in tachiai. If this is the case, then why is yonkajo tatsumaki demonstrated in hanza handachi on the Seishinkai’s video?

    Please show me where either Kondo Sensei or Kato Sensei states that the techniques being demonstrated are being performed in the ONLY way possible. The hiden mokuroku contains 118 KIHON waza and hundreds of oyo waza. Is one’s understanding of the hiden mokuroku so limited / shallow as to believe that techniques can only be performed one way, without variation, only standing or only seated, etc..? The demonstration of yonkajo tatsumaki as seen on Kato Sensei’s video, contradicts Giacomo’s claim (as does the basic make up and order of the hiden mokuroku). The 118 kihon techniques of the hiden mokuroku are just that,,, kihon. Why are people limiting their understanding to one expression of each technique, doesn’t Kato Sensei teach oyo waza? If one were to compare the kata from each group they will see more similarities than differences. These include personal preference, personality and the depth of understanding, all within the parameters of the kata as taught by Tokimune Sensei. Daito-ryu is a principal based art, transmitting certain teachings within each kata. Kihon waza are the foundation and with the knowledge gained from them, numerous variations are possible. My two cents.

    Ted Howell
    Ted Howell

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    Dear Ted,

    I appreciate your comments regarding the article on Black Belt.

    In Daito-ryu we use many different training methods: katageiko, oyogeiko, renzokugeiko, kaeshigeiko and others.

    We practice oyo-waza and we value this kind of practice the most, since it helps you "free" yourself from the kata once you have mastered it completely.

    BUT I believe that when making an official DVD and presenting a technique as original Yonkajo you should practice it as faithfully as possible. This is what I mean about the choiche of your teacher in that DVD.

    Regarding tatsumaki, it can be done by starting standing or in that position, which is NOT idori in any case.

    By the way I believe that the Seishinkai videos are very good, both technically and in realization, in fact they are TOO GOOD, in the sense that they may make *some* people buy them and then open a dojo, not understanding that you simply CAN NOT learn ANY martial art in this way and most certainly not Daito-ryu.
    Giacomo Merello

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    Giacomo,

    Although I appreciate your opinion regarding how one should present the art of Daito-ryu on video, it is just your opinion. I understand that the kihon of yonkajo is tachiai, but Kondo Sensei is free to display the principals of the techniques any way he wishes. I was simply pointing out a contradiction in your claims.

    It is one thing to say that Kondo Sensei “shouldn’t” have presented yonkajo a certain way, acknowledging that many oyo exist. And quite another to say, yonkajo can ONLY be performed in tachiai; which is what you have claimed for years. Maybe you have softened your opinion as your knowledge of the hiden mokuroku increases.

    “Regarding tatsumaki, it can be done by starting standing or in that position, which is NOT idori in any case.”

    Oh my, did you actually say this? That is just ridiculous. It sounds like an answer ex-president Bill Clinton would have given…

    Ted Howell
    Ted Howell

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    This thread has really gotten off my original point of not stabbing yourselves with swords, huh? Maybe I'm the only one who finds this a problem? I'm sorry for my sword paranoia. I confess I have cut myself with sharp pointy things, so I'm sure that has something to do with my concern.

    On to yonkajo! Giacomo I think I'm a little confused. For the past few years you have been really harping on Kondo sensei's video because he did yonkajo in idori (only one or two kata are on there if memory serves). Now someone presents Kato doing yonkajo in something other then tachiai and it is suddenly ok?!? Is hanza handachi less of an infraction of the "yonkajo code" then idori is? Which is it? You can't have it both ways. Either it can ONLY be done standing or it is OK to do from any starting position. Or maybe, it is OK for Kato to do it from a different starting position because he is your teacher, but not for Kondo sensei!? Hmmm. All of your other arguments have fallen apart over time, this is the last, somewhat valid, point you have and I think it just got stepped on. Sorry buddy.

    Hey Ted I'll see you next week, in NYC. It'll be nice to see you on the mat again!

    Safe training everyone,
    Christopher Covington

    Daito-ryu aikijujutsu
    Kashima Shinden Jikishinkage-ryu heiho

    All views expressed here are my own and don't necessarily represent the views of the arts I practice, the teachers and people I train with or any dojo I train in.

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