Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.
 

Re: [SCA-JML] I am beset by pesky ninjas..

Expand Messages
  • T. Carpenter
    ... A very good friend of mine and her boyfriend are both students at a To Shin Do dojo in Arizona, and are consequently quite knowledgeable about Mr. Hayes
    Message 1 of 13 , Aug 2, 2005
      > You might look into finding books by Stephen K. Hayes,
      > an honorable warrior of the Martial ARts.

      A very good friend of mine and her boyfriend are both students at a To
      Shin Do dojo in Arizona, and are consequently quite knowledgeable about
      Mr. Hayes' writings and martial techniques. While I cannot comment on
      the reliability of Mr. Hayes' techniques in a fight, or on how
      'authentic' the transmission of the style from Hayes' master to him was,
      I can tell you the following things about Hayes' style and philosophy:

      1) What Hayes teaches as regards to self-defense seems very applicable.
      Much of it relates to disarming, joint-breaking, grapping, et cetera -
      and seems very similar to other Japanese martial forms, except perhaps a
      touch more nasty.

      2) What Hayes teaches of philosophy and spirituality exists, but seems
      to be in a much more esoteric mode than most other martial arts. Yes, I
      realize what I'm saying. I don't know if this is a function of Hayes,
      his master, or the general attitude of bujinkan practicioners in
      general. By example, while Hayes never specifically says in his
      literature that Ninpo/To Shin Do practicioners are capable of
      supernatural feats, he alludes to it. Similar in many ways to more
      esoteric facets of Tai Chi, Ba Gua, et cetera.

      3) Among the things To Shin Doists practice are: shuriken throwing,
      kusarijutsu, kenjutsu, stealth, meditation, et cetera. Not terribly
      unusual fare, but there seems to be a heavy amount of what most
      westerners would consider 'traditional ninja weapons' in the art form.

      4) Last Estrella, I stopped by this friend's house, and proceeded to
      leaf through some of her books by Mr. Hayes. I was aesthetically pleased
      to see that stealth had 'forms', and he provided methods for stealthing
      through types of terrain. I was less than aesthetically pleased to see
      the pictoral subject of each chapter dressed in black pyjamas and the
      whole 'ninja getup.' Anyone who's been in the military will explain to
      you why wearing all black is a really bad nighttime camoflauge. They'd
      be better served with darkish brown, green, or gray. The books had other
      similar 'modernizations' in them as well, though details escape me.

      In summation?
      I think Hayes and his teacher Masaaki Hatsumi really do have at least
      some measure of effective, old-style ninjutsu. But I also think that a
      lot of what was originally there has mutated, changed, and gotten lost,
      and they either won't believe it or have decided to ignore that fact;
      they're martial artists, not historians. It also seems to me that
      despite the attachment Hayes obviously has to his art's lineage, he's at
      least partially bought into his own hype, and the general hype
      surrounding ninjas and ninjutsu, both due to do what I saw in his books,
      and the attitude his schools encourage: namely that To Shin Do is more
      effective than most martial arts being practiced today.

      But don't take my word for it, hell. Go research it yourself. (See what
      deciding to gun for your PhD does to your brain pattern?) And if you're
      really interested and in Arizona, check out the Dojo yourself. It's
      called "Phoenix Quest Center," and is in Phoenix, unsurpisingly. I don't
      know how good it is, but the students there seem pretty pleased.

      -Mishima no Akikata, of the Hand of the Hunt
      aka
      -Tyler Carpenter, Rogue Academic
      "Cloud-free mountains/Encircle the sea, which holds/The reflected
      moon:/A view of it there changes/the islands/Into holes of emptiness in
      a sea of ice" - Saigyo
    • Scott
      Thank you all for your prompt and helpful answers! I probably won t be researching further into this as it s not an area I have a great interest in and I don t
      Message 2 of 13 , Aug 3, 2005
        Thank you all for your prompt and helpful answers!

        I probably won't be researching further into this as it's not an area I
        have a great interest in and I don't even have access to a decent
        library where I am so the Internet is my primary source of research. As
        you say 99.9% of the information about historical ninjas on the
        Internet is hogwash. I am satisfied to have found even one source of
        halfway accurate information. Now I can do my part to quell the
        spreading of misinformation in my little corner of the world. :)

        It seems asking a martial arts dojo about the history of ninjutsu is
        akin to asking a barber if you need a haircut.

        Domo arigato gozaimashita!!

        Saito
      • Nevin Broz
        Being a student of the Bujinkan traditions I feel that I may be of some use. Our lineages have been traced and are verified as legitimate. The Bugei Ryuha
        Message 3 of 13 , Aug 3, 2005
          Being a student of the Bujinkan traditions I feel that I may be of some use. Our lineages have been traced and are verified as legitimate. The "Bugei Ryuha Daijiten", (which is the record of all Japanese legitmate schools) lists all the schools, and Dr. Hatsumi as Grandmaster. As well, he is still the only recognized living ninja by the Government of Japan. Here is a link to my Sensei's website. There is quite a bit of info if you are interested.

          http://www.bujinkan.hr/index-en.php

          As we say, "Gambatte ne!" (keep going <training>)

          Nevin Z. Broz
          Shidoshi-ho
          Bujinkan Seishin Ninpo Ronin Dojo



          "Ii Saburou Katsumori (Joshua B.)" <tatsushu@...> wrote:
          > I know many of you have knowledge and resources unavailable to me, so
          > I was hoping that you would help me out.
          >
          > This website:
          > http://www.illuminatedlantern.com/cinema/features/ninja.html
          >
          > seems to jibe best with the history as I have come to understand it.
          > What I am hoping for is that some of you might read this and give me
          > your opinion as to it's credibility and accuracy.

          That website doesn't seem too far off what I've seen.

          The problem with 'ninja' is that it has gotten tied up with 'ninjutsu'
          in terms of the ryuha that claim a specific 'ninjutsu' lineage.
          People seem to have the idea that if they were a 'ninja' then they
          followed these teachings. Without getting into the historical
          validity of claims made by traditions today, realize that 'ninja', or
          more appropriately 'shinobi-mono' were not, in our period, anything
          more than a 'special forces' team.

          As an example, during Go-Daigo's revolt against the Hojo regents,
          Kamakura forces at one point scaled the sides of the fortified temple
          where Go-Daigo was staying under the cover of darkness. They
          pretended to be friendly troops to gain access to the inner levels and
          then caused panic from the inside, allowing their friends outside to
          attack.

          This is shinobi-mono. There is nothing Chinese about it. There isn't
          even a special school in this instance. The 'tricks' were simply
          battlefield tactics, and the term 'shinobi' implied that they were
          done with stealth.

          As another example (and forgive me if I forget the names right off the
          top of my head), a castle was beseiged on all sides. A few warriors
          were able to escape undetected and brought reinforcements to break the
          seige. These are 'shinobi', or 'ninja', at least while they were
          being stealthy.

          Now, these 'shinobi-mono' often get confused with a more modern
          concept of 'ninja' that is that of the elite peasant warrior who is
          part of a secret clan defying the buke, using 'ninjutsu'
          ('shinobi-no-sube') and secret combat skills learned from China.

          This latter group I have not yet found any pre-Edo documentation for.
          Kukishinden Ryu claims to have old scrolls going back to someone from
          China, but I've not seen any verification of this claim that would be
          accepted by historical scholars at large.

          I'd love to learn if you find out more--I'd especially like to find
          some references to the Sengoku writings on ninja that I hear so many
          people in the English-speaking world talk about, but have not seen.


          -Ii


          UNSUBSCRIBE: E-mail sca-jml-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com



          SPONSORED LINKS
          Living history Used car history Vehicle history

          ---------------------------------
          YAHOO! GROUPS LINKS


          Visit your group "sca-jml" on the web.

          To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
          sca-jml-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com

          Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of Service.


          ---------------------------------



          __________________________________________________
          Do You Yahoo!?
          Tired of spam? Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around
          http://mail.yahoo.com

          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Solveig Throndardottir
          Noble Cousins! Greetings from Solveig! ... After a quick look over, I would not suggest giving much credance to these sites. Your Humble Servant Solveig
          Message 4 of 13 , Aug 3, 2005
            Noble Cousins!

            Greetings from Solveig!

            > http://edisto.cofc.edu/~nmtaylor/history.html
            >
            > http://www.whitetigerninja.com/Ninjahistory.html
            >
            > http://www.ninjabilly.com/html/ninja_history.html

            After a quick look over, I would not suggest giving much credance to
            these sites.

            Your Humble Servant
            Solveig Throndardottir
            Amateur Scholar

            +----------------------------------------------------------------------+
            | Barbara Nostrand, Ph.D. | Solveig Throndardottir, CoM, CoS, Fleur |
            | deMoivre Institute | Carolingia Statis Mentis Est |
            | mailto:nostrand@... | mailto:Solveig@... |
            +----------------------------------------------------------------------+
            | Note. Many popular "free" email services are automatically routed to |
            | the trash by my email filters. |
            +----------------------------------------------------------------------+


            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • Solveig Throndardottir
            Noble Cousin! Greetings from Solveig! ... To quote a college friend of mine, bull piddle . Louis Frederic in Japan Encyclopedia claims that the Tenchuu gumi
            Message 5 of 13 , Aug 5, 2005
              Noble Cousin!

              Greetings from Solveig!

              > Being a student of the Bujinkan traditions I feel that I may be of
              > some use. Our lineages have been traced and are verified as
              > legitimate. The "Bugei Ryuha Daijiten", (which is the record of all
              > Japanese legitmate schools) lists all the schools, and Dr. Hatsumi as
              > Grandmaster. As well, he is still the only recognized living ninja by
              > the Government of Japan. Here is a link to my Sensei's website.
              > There is quite a bit of info if you are interested.
              >
              > http://www.bujinkan.hr/index-en.php

              To quote a college friend of mine, "bull piddle". Louis Frederic in
              "Japan Encyclopedia" claims that the Tenchuu gumi (not Tenchi gumi as
              claimed in the web site) was a group of direct vassals to the emperor
              who revolted against the shougun in 1863. The members of the tenchuu
              gumi were generally: bushi, peasants, and at least one member of the
              kuge (nobility). The peasants were led by a village chief from the Tosa
              estate. Note. There is no mention of a "tenchigumi" in either Daijirin
              or Nihonshi Kenkyuu.

              I am sure that you are having an enjoyable experience in your doujo and
              respect your sensei very much, but you have been experiencing a
              particular kind of Japanese hype common in the martial arts community.
              The web page which you give does nothing at all to seriously
              substantiate claims for ninjutsu.

              Incidentally, ninja is the generally preferred Japanese word not
              shinobi no mono. Further, the base meaning of "shinobi" is "endure"
              with the circular definition "ninja" appearing as the third definition.
              I rather think that "endure" is the real root of the word and refers to
              special fortitude by spec ops units which would silently ford motes,
              scale walls, &c. Even popular depictions of ninja portray the general
              silence of the ninja. Why would "ninja" be preferred to "shinobi no
              mono" for pretty much the same reason that Greek, Italian, and French
              nouns are preferred to Anglo-Saxon nouns in English. Ninja simply
              sounds more educated, because it uses on'yomi readings. The Japanese
              are especially fond of "night attacks", so moving silently and wearing
              hard to see clothing could make you pretty stealthy.

              As for this "samurai code" preventing engagement in special ops, hooey!
              The Japanese love special ops. There are times when you make a big deal
              about battle and even single combat, and times when you don't. As for
              night attacks in general, you should read about the start of the Genpei
              War, the famous night attack involving the Soga brothers, &c.

              As for fanciful claims of antiquity, you encounter that sort of thing
              all the time when dealing with things Japanese. Everyone has to learn
              to sift through these claims.

              Your Humble Servant
              Solveig Throndardottir
              Amateur Scholar

              +----------------------------------------------------------------------+
              | Barbara Nostrand, Ph.D. | Solveig Throndardottir, CoM, CoS, Fleur |
              | deMoivre Institute | Carolingia Statis Mentis Est |
              | mailto:nostrand@... | mailto:Solveig@... |
              +----------------------------------------------------------------------+
              | Note. Many popular "free" email services are automatically routed to |
              | the trash by my email filters. |
              +----------------------------------------------------------------------+


              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • Anthony Bryant
              ... It is *today* but wasn t historically. And if we are talking in terms of historical context... Today, they re typically called bikes -- there was a time
              Message 6 of 13 , Aug 5, 2005
                Solveig Throndardottir wrote:

                >
                >
                > Incidentally, ninja is the generally preferred Japanese word not
                > shinobi no mono.


                It is *today* but wasn't historically. And if we are talking in terms of
                historical context...

                Today, they're typically called "bikes" -- there was a time they were
                called velocipedes, and in the historical context, that term is acceptable.

                > Further, the base meaning of "shinobi" is "endure" with the circular
                > definition "ninja" appearing as the third definition.

                Irrelevent. The term "shinobi no mono" is a locked phrase with one
                recognized definition. Anyone who wants to translate that as "someone
                who is enduring" is the one being odd, not the one using it for its
                recognized meaning of "ninja."

                > I rather think
                > that "endure" is the real root of the word and refers to special
                > fortitude by spec ops units which would silently ford motes, scale
                > walls, &c.

                It also has the context of "stealth".


                > As for this "samurai code" preventing engagement in special ops,
                > hooey! The Japanese love special ops.

                Oh, yeah. ;)


                Effingham
              • Solveig Throndardottir
                Baron Edward! Greetings from Solveig! I think that you are being intentionally dense. Ninja is the preferred word today. I made no great claims about
                Message 7 of 13 , Aug 5, 2005
                  Baron Edward!

                  Greetings from Solveig! I think that you are being intentionally dense.
                  Ninja is the preferred word today. I made no great claims about
                  historical usage. If I had, I would have cited a kogojiten. As for
                  etymology, that is generally problematic. I am reminded of my Classical
                  Japanese professor going on about the verb saburau and how that leads
                  to samurai. The question is why are they called "ninja" or "shinobi no
                  mono" (big deal - that's just the kun'yomi reading and doesn't even
                  change the order of the kanji involved)?

                  > Irrelevent. The term "shinobi no mono" is a locked phrase with one
                  > recognized definition. Anyone who wants to translate that as "someone
                  > who is enduring" is the one being odd, not the one using it for its
                  > recognized meaning of "ninja."

                  It's a locked phrase which at this point is almost hopelessly muddled
                  by popular culture. The question is where does the locked phrase come
                  from? If we just go by the understood meaning, then it refers to those
                  guys in the black pyjamas that you see in ramen operas on television.
                  In short, nothing more than a modern flight of fancy. As for
                  "stealthy", the question is why does "shinobu" relate to "stealth"? I
                  think that I addressed it, you didn't. Yes, there are oodles of
                  homonyms in Japanese, but they usually don't share kanji! The root of
                  the kanji in question is "heart" with the rest added for sound. The
                  root meaning is "especially strong fortitude".

                  While Kogorin attempts to trace "shinobu" with the sense of being
                  undetectable to Genji Monogatari, the quote does not actually include
                  the word or any variant. However, it does relate the special notion of
                  not being detected. The art of "invisibility" is the one central aspect
                  of ninjutsu that is generally encountered. Not the costume, not the
                  weapon forms, &c. As you yourself once wrote, "At Pennsic, a ninja
                  would wear norman or tudor."

                  The earliest appearance of "shinobi no mono" appears to be in the
                  Taiheiki 20 where we encounter:

                  "Ichimotsu no shinobi no mono wo Hachimanzan ni irete"

                  This business about the ninja being a T'ang import based on the
                  teachings of Sun Tsu seems to me to be entirely specious.

                  Your Humble Servant
                  Solveig Throndardottir
                  Amateur Scholar

                  +----------------------------------------------------------------------+
                  | Barbara Nostrand, Ph.D. | Solveig Throndardottir, CoM, CoS, Fleur |
                  | deMoivre Institute | Carolingia Statis Mentis Est |
                  | mailto:nostrand@... | mailto:Solveig@... |
                  +----------------------------------------------------------------------+
                  | Note. Many popular "free" email services are automatically routed to |
                  | the trash by my email filters. |
                  +----------------------------------------------------------------------+


                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • Nevin Broz
                  Believe what you will. History cannot be changed. Names can, as our lineages have been renamed many times over the centuries but history cannot. The titles
                  Message 8 of 13 , Aug 5, 2005
                    Believe what you will. History cannot be changed. Names can, as our lineages have been renamed many times over the centuries but history cannot. The titles Shidoshi, Shidoshi-ho (meaning senior and junior instructors respectfully) didn't exist historically. Hatsumi Sensei created these words, yet every day modern claim to some ninja school and a few samurai lineages use them as ancient terminology. ex: Frank Dux from Bloodsport fame. Search for the truth and do what makes you happy!


                    Nevin Z. Broz
                    Shidoshi-ho
                    Bujinkan Seishin Ninpo Ronin Dojo

                    Solveig Throndardottir <nostrand@...> wrote:
                    Noble Cousin!

                    Greetings from Solveig!

                    > Being a student of the Bujinkan traditions I feel that I may be of
                    > some use. Our lineages have been traced and are verified as
                    > legitimate. The "Bugei Ryuha Daijiten", (which is the record of all
                    > Japanese legitmate schools) lists all the schools, and Dr. Hatsumi as
                    > Grandmaster. As well, he is still the only recognized living ninja by
                    > the Government of Japan. Here is a link to my Sensei's website.
                    > There is quite a bit of info if you are interested.
                    >
                    > http://www.bujinkan.hr/index-en.php

                    To quote a college friend of mine, "bull piddle". Louis Frederic in
                    "Japan Encyclopedia" claims that the Tenchuu gumi (not Tenchi gumi as
                    claimed in the web site) was a group of direct vassals to the emperor
                    who revolted against the shougun in 1863. The members of the tenchuu
                    gumi were generally: bushi, peasants, and at least one member of the
                    kuge (nobility). The peasants were led by a village chief from the Tosa
                    estate. Note. There is no mention of a "tenchigumi" in either Daijirin
                    or Nihonshi Kenkyuu.

                    I am sure that you are having an enjoyable experience in your doujo and
                    respect your sensei very much, but you have been experiencing a
                    particular kind of Japanese hype common in the martial arts community.
                    The web page which you give does nothing at all to seriously
                    substantiate claims for ninjutsu.

                    Incidentally, ninja is the generally preferred Japanese word not
                    shinobi no mono. Further, the base meaning of "shinobi" is "endure"
                    with the circular definition "ninja" appearing as the third definition.
                    I rather think that "endure" is the real root of the word and refers to
                    special fortitude by spec ops units which would silently ford motes,
                    scale walls, &c. Even popular depictions of ninja portray the general
                    silence of the ninja. Why would "ninja" be preferred to "shinobi no
                    mono" for pretty much the same reason that Greek, Italian, and French
                    nouns are preferred to Anglo-Saxon nouns in English. Ninja simply
                    sounds more educated, because it uses on'yomi readings. The Japanese
                    are especially fond of "night attacks", so moving silently and wearing
                    hard to see clothing could make you pretty stealthy.

                    As for this "samurai code" preventing engagement in special ops, hooey!
                    The Japanese love special ops. There are times when you make a big deal
                    about battle and even single combat, and times when you don't. As for
                    night attacks in general, you should read about the start of the Genpei
                    War, the famous night attack involving the Soga brothers, &c.

                    As for fanciful claims of antiquity, you encounter that sort of thing
                    all the time when dealing with things Japanese. Everyone has to learn
                    to sift through these claims.

                    Your Humble Servant
                    Solveig Throndardottir
                    Amateur Scholar

                    +----------------------------------------------------------------------+
                    | Barbara Nostrand, Ph.D. | Solveig Throndardottir, CoM, CoS, Fleur |
                    | deMoivre Institute | Carolingia Statis Mentis Est |
                    | mailto:nostrand@... | mailto:Solveig@... |
                    +----------------------------------------------------------------------+
                    | Note. Many popular "free" email services are automatically routed to |
                    | the trash by my email filters. |
                    +----------------------------------------------------------------------+


                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]



                    UNSUBSCRIBE: E-mail sca-jml-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com



                    SPONSORED LINKS
                    Living history Used car history Vehicle history

                    ---------------------------------
                    YAHOO! GROUPS LINKS


                    Visit your group "sca-jml" on the web.

                    To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
                    sca-jml-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com

                    Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of Service.


                    ---------------------------------




                    ---------------------------------
                    Start your day with Yahoo! - make it your home page

                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  • Solveig Throndardottir
                    Noble Cousin! Greetings from Solveig! Faking lineages was and is very common in Japan. Your school s lineage may be authentic, however the chances are very
                    Message 9 of 13 , Aug 5, 2005
                      Noble Cousin!

                      Greetings from Solveig! Faking lineages was and is very common in
                      Japan. Your school's lineage may be authentic, however the chances are
                      very good that it is not. Claiming a lineage going back to the T'ang is
                      automatically suspicious. There are some things in Japan which are
                      traceable to the T'ang, but they are generally preserved in the court.
                      Look, there is even a controversy about the imperial lineage which only
                      goes back about six hundred years or so. The T'ang were long gone a
                      LONG time before that. History means "investigations". This means
                      trying to find things out. The web page which was quoted here earlier
                      was far from authoritative and even spelled the name of a particular
                      uprising in Japan incorrectly in a way which does make a difference.

                      Here is an example from something that I am involved with. There is a
                      controversy over the origin of the Sen family. The Sen have held a pair
                      of adjoining estates in Kyouto since the early seventeenth century and
                      are linked by marriage to the imperial family. The dispute is whether
                      or not they are Koreans or some such thing.

                      Your Humble Servant
                      Solveig Throndardottir
                      Amateur Scholar

                      +----------------------------------------------------------------------+
                      | Barbara Nostrand, Ph.D. | Solveig Throndardottir, CoM, CoS, Fleur |
                      | deMoivre Institute | Carolingia Statis Mentis Est |
                      | mailto:nostrand@... | mailto:Solveig@... |
                      +----------------------------------------------------------------------+
                      | Note. Many popular "free" email services are automatically routed to |
                      | the trash by my email filters. |
                      +----------------------------------------------------------------------+


                      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                    Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.