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Thread: Kyu Ryu island heritage mostly before kusanku

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    Default Kyu Ryu island heritage mostly before kusanku

    I have been doing a lot of research lately and I'm finally getting closer to the information I'm Looking for. Funikoshi along with the other masters of Okinawan arts, all designed katas that were originally based on Kung Fu forms. Can anyone help me fill in the blanks on the List bellow or possibly have any corrections? I'm trying to draw a lineage back to the original martial arts that influence All the Ryu Kyu island martial arts. If you could correct, fill in, or help me out down bellow it would be much appreciated.

    Also If you have some interesting information about the Ryu Arts or Shotokan and their lineage through the Fujian province of china Please post it. I have dated Funikoshi all the way back to Chuan Fa but I cant find which shaolin monk taught Kusanku. There is absolutely nothing before Kusanku aka Kwang Shang Fu (1660?-1762).



    Supposedly:

    Heian Shodan -
    Heian Nidan -
    Heian Sandan -
    Heian Yondan -
    Heian Godan -
    Tekki Shodan - Tiger Style
    Tekki Nidan - Tiger Style
    Tekki Sandan - Tiger Style
    Bassai Dai -
    Bassai Sho -
    Kanku Dai
    Kanku Sho
    Enpi or Empi
    Jion - shaolin roots
    Gankaku - White Crane
    Hangetsu - White Crane
    Jitte - shaolin roots
    Chinte - White Crane
    Sochin
    Meikyo White Crane
    Jiin
    Gojushiho Dai
    Gojushiho Sho
    Nijushiho - Dragon Stance
    Wankan
    Unsu - Dragon Stance

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    Brad, you've asked for corrections. Funakoshi. The details can be so important when researching names and particularly in foreign languages.

    How "serious" is your research? There are a lot of books out there, but I don't think anyone has made quite such a bold attempt to trace ALL the kata back to China. Perhaps there are reasons for that.
    David Noble
    Shorinji Kempo (1983 - 1988)
    I'll think of a proper sig when I get a minute...

    For now, I'm just waiting for the smack of the Bo against a hard wooden floor....

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    You will not find any of these kata in China unless they were taken there by a Karate man.
    Ed Boyd

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    Quote Originally Posted by CEB View Post
    You will not find any of these kata in China unless they were taken there by a Karate man.
    Correct. This is especially evident in the Heian or Pinan kata. They were made from the higher Okinawan kata. So you won't find an equivalent form in China.
    I'm sorry sir, but your research is flawed. All history and what little documentation survived reveals that while Okinawan kata were influenced by China (and possibly others) they are unique to Okinawa, not remade Chinese forms.
    Tony Urena

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    Thank you for taking time to write something on my Thread.


    Does anyone know where I can find real information? Maybe names of good books that have to do with lineage from Fuzhou or Putian, martial arts, history of Chinese culture during the Ming-Qing change over. Preferably around Taiwan, or even Okinawa anything at this point. Maybe even where I can purchase old Kung Fu manuals during the 1500-1750s It doesn't matter if its written in Chinese... I appreciate your generosity with your time to help me out! Nothing goes unnoticed when helping someone who is in need.


    Thank you!

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    Hi Brad,
    Excellent question.
    A few thoughts.
    First Heinan, or as the Okinawans call it Pinan, maybe look at Elmar T. Schmeisser's book Channan where he traces his thesis about a possible older Chinese kata that was modified by Itosu Sensei to form Pinan kata. It is probably a minority opinion, I think most people feel Itosu Sensei basically took parts of Kusanku and Chinto to make Pinan which were meant for the public school PE program.

    Next Hangetsu- Okinawan's call it Seisan and it is almost a universal Okinawan kata found in almost every style. Pull up youtubes Uechi Ryu Seisan. Uechi students say this is exactly what Uechi Sensei learned in China. See how different it is from Shotokan Hangetsu. Also youtube a Shorin ryu version. It will definitely be closer to Hangetsu.

    Alexander Co's Five Ancestor's Fist book talks a little about how close his style is to Uechi Ryu but is you look at his Sanchin in the book, or white crane sanchin for that matter it isn't that close.
    I don't practice Uechi Ryu but I know several Uechi Ryu students have spent a lot of time in China and came to the conclusion that Uechi ryu is locked in time by it's traditions but the Chinese root system has probably evolved to be unrecognizable. In fact I think that is a fair warning that older style doesn't guarantee older kata. For example Fusei Kise Sensei teaches an old style karate but his Wansu is something he added in himself.

    I don't know if you are going to find a whole kata in Southern Chinese martial arts to match any Okinawan kata, but first I would you tube the Okinawan versions of everything you have listed.

    Sometimes I find interesting parallel techniques like the odd elbow blocks in pinan sandan (also show up in Chinto) are also used against a post similar to a makiwara in MokGar kung fu.

    Brennan translations is a nice internet source for free Kung Fu books although they have more Tai Chi and Xing-yi than anything.
    Plum Publications also has a lot of Southern Chinese and Hakka martial arts books.

    Best luck in your search. Even if you don't find what you are looking for I think a thorough search will add a lot of depth to your karate.
    Respectfully,
    Len McCoy

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    Thanks Len I really appreciate your time, and I am going to go research these books and the information you gave me. Every little bit of information is helping me get closer especially right now. I'm at a difficult point because I've gone to all the local book stores, libraries (5 different cities), and online just trying to find anything and its like they don't want us to know what happened from 1550-1750 in china .

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    Please let us know if you find anything.
    Respectfully,
    Len McCoy

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    Great many of the published 'histories' are crap. They don't pass any basic logic tests. I can address a few things but frankly you asking to trace kata back too far. The oldest Karate related kata I think only trace their roots back to 17th and 18th centuries tops.

    Somewhere in the 80s or 90s the existing histories weren't good enough for Westerners so some started selling fish stories.

    With exception of a few examples Karate was created on Okinawa not China. Especially your line of Karate stemming from Sakagawa/Matsumura. I dare say there may be as much or more Japanese influence as Chinese influence.
    Last edited by CEB; 18th December 2014 at 08:35.
    Ed Boyd

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    I understand I might be going to far, or doing too much, or maybe there is no end or pot of gold at the end of this road, but I feel that i must continue to search. Is there any where I can purchase or view old manuals and handbooks from china and japan from the 1500s-1800s? Every time I do a Google search I get ridiculous websites selling ancient texts from the 1920s, these may have factual information about the Kung Fu but its not what I'm looking for.. libraries seem to be less help each time I go to a new one. I will purchase, travel, whatever I need to do to get my hands on these books please let me know... Thanks again for everyone help with this long journey I have ahead of my self. (do you think I should post this comment in the kung fu thread?).

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    tebo

    Interesting project---and good luck.

    You might check what "named" kata the old timers had in common--might, MIGHT, point to a common source or common persom. Might help, although there is no way of knowing if they were the same kata or if they "looked" the same etc. Just because 2 or more groups has a "seisan" kata does not mean it was the same seisan kata.

    And of course there is no way of knowing where the "in-common" person got the kata to start with.

    Part of the problem is that details of exactly where and exactly what it was called often only becomes "interesting" later on in training. GENERALLY.

    By the time most folks get around to wondering about the details of say exactly where a given kata comes from its likely to late to find out.

    I think of it terms of my grandfather---how much stuff did he know that I never asked him about? And now its to late.

    Stuff he knew as a matter of course I have to really work to find out from other sources.
    Chris Thomas

    "While people are entitled to their illusions, they are not entitled to a limitless enjoyment of them and they are not entitled to impose them upon others."

    "Team Cynicism" MVP 2005-2006
    Currently on "Injured/Reserve" list due to a scathing Sarcasm pile-up.

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    Hello,

    You will not find a "Shaolin monk", who instructed "Kűshankű" (Kôshankin), because there never was a "Shaolin monk" who instructed Kôshankin. There are no roots in a supposed “Shaolin” fighting art. You insist on Fukien Province, however, all you can find in the original source mentioning Kôshankin is that this person came from China (i. e. there is absolutely no local specification). Also the dates given for Kôshankin are nonsensical. “Kung-fu” is certainly not a term used for Chinese fighting arts during the time frame of Kôshankin.

    Regards,

    Henning Wittwer

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    First one more caution echoing what Chris Thomas said. If you go to fightingarts.com and check out part 2 of the interview with Hohan Soken Sensei he speaks about different villages calling their kata names based on similar kata they saw at festivals they went to, so yes two kata with the same name may not be of the same origin.

    I was reading Rob Redmond Sensei's book "Kata: The Folk Dances of Shotokan" (although he has quit his web site he still makes book available for free at www.trinityshotokan.com) that Redmond Sensei feels that Seisan (Hangetsu) is based on Southern Mantis Four Gates Form. I couldn't find a complete film of the form but I strongly suspect just like sanchin being in multiple Hakka arts that if we look for a while we might find seisan like forms in several Hakka arts. Of course next question might be are any of these parent child relations or all they all cousins related by a long lost grandparent form.

    Meikyo in Okinawa it is Rohai. At Mario McKenna Sensei's site www.kowakan.com there is a blog titled "Tomari Rohai Kata". In that blog he states "According to Kinjo Akio and Tokashiki Iken, the kata "Rohai" originated from Monk Fist or Lohan Quan. The pronunciation of "Lohan" became Okinawanized to "Rohai".

    Passai At Matthew Apsokardu Sensei's site www.ikigaiway.com in an article titled "Making Sense of Passai" he also quotes Kinjo Akio Sensei stating that Passai is leopard and lion boxing.

    I don't read Japanese and don't have access to Kinjo Akio Sensei's original work so for the moment this is all the help I can give. A trip back to Okinawa might be helpful but I don't see that in my future either. Good Luck.
    Respectfully,
    Len McCoy
    Good luck.
    Last edited by len mccoy; 14th January 2015 at 01:17.

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    If he is refering to Say Mun Sau / 4 Gate Hands.... that is batshit crazy. It doesn't look anything like Seisan.

    Naha - Tomari - and Uechi Seisan do look similar in theme. If I had to pick some crazy theory I would say they are all inspired by what was taught by Seisho Aragaki Peichin. Tomari, Shuri and Naha are all right next to each other. To go to Shuri you fly to Naha and take a taxi. They are all right there on the same part of the island. All we know about about Seisan is:
    In 1828 (Qing or Ching dynasty in China), our ancestors inherited a kungfu style of Fujian province in China.
    Sakugawa and Matsumura were licensed in Jigen Ryu. This is proven. Part of Jigen Ryu is thwe use of Odori (dance) to teach fighting technique to peasant class citizens to form make shift militias. Weapons were staves, oars, hoes etc... (make shift farm tools). Hmmmm?

    Traditional wisdom before all this seminar selling conjecture that started in the late 80s was with the possible exception of KoBo (based on a 17th century Naganata waza) and Tsuken Akahachi Eku De, the oldest Okinawan kata was Sakugawa no Kun. Jigen Ryu also uses the Striking post. If I had to lay a bet on some wold theory I would say Jigen Ryu provided the Peichin a structured style framework to codify their Okinawan fighting methods. At best they stole waza from Chinese in stuck it into their own kata after seeing the value of using Chinese forms to catalog their methods.

    Why would Okinawans study Chinese forms and learn them in order to totally change them out of recognition. It makes no sense.

    The old conventional history on Kusanku kata was that it was CREATED by Matusumura and contained techniques (waza ) he learned from 'Kusanku'. The Systematic founder of SHorin Ryu ....... Shotokan is Soken Matsumura. The rest is recent new fangled bull shit .... I mean research.
    Last edited by CEB; 14th January 2015 at 15:55.
    Ed Boyd

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    I certainly have heard Matsumura learned Jigen ryu but never heard Sakugawa learned Jigen ryu. Any source you could reference?
    Second question, If you think Seisan doesn't come from China it would follow that you don't think Uechi Sensei learned Sanchin, Seisan and Sanseru in China.
    Certainly goes against everything I have ever heard Uechi practitioners say. Any reason you think Uechi Ryu would distort it's history?
    Have more questions and a few answers as well but out of time for now.
    Respectfully,
    Len McCoy

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