BUGEI & BUDO

After rebuilt my website, I have been using "BUGEI" instead of martial arts.
I would like to explain the reason.

In English, Budo(武道) is translated as "martial arts".
The concept of martial arts include all of the way of struggle under fair play.
For example, boxing, wrestling and fencing.

On the other hand, the concept of Budo didn't include sport concept.
In Japan, boxing and wrestling are just sports, we don't regard them as Budo.
Basically, Budo is the way to kill.

Originally, Budo was the way to kill.
But today, the border of Budo and sports is unclear.
The concept of Budo is almost overlap to sports.
I believe that when Budo was named, the destiny was also fixed.

There were two huge impacts to Bugei(武芸) in Japanese modern history.
First one is the time of "Last Samurai".
After the period of Shogun, the modern period came.
New modern government and many citizen believed that Japan should imitate Western civilization.
No more swords or weapons. The spirit of Bugei was abandoned once.

The unstable Bugeisha was upset about this situation.
They were looking for the way of survival of this difficulties.
They had to continue the tradition and name to the future.
They found out good idea.
That was in 茶道(Tea ceremony), 華道(Flower arrangement), 書道(calligraphy).
Adding unique philosophy to traditional arts.
Not only for making tea, not only arranging flower, not only writing character.
...Not only fighting...
They renamed Bugei to Budo at that time.
(Actually, Budo was not populer in Edo period)

My wife is studying tea ceremony, my mother was the instructor of flower arrangement, I have studied calligraphy. I know these arts are great. These arts are including the high spirit of Japanese civilization very much, no doubt.

But the way of fighting is not only culture. Not only philosophy. It should for more serious situation, for more functional usability. Sometimes, it is including the destiney of nation. But Budo which was renamed from Bugei started new way in the modern age.

Second one attacked to Bugei after WW2. GHQ of united nations regarded Budo as "nationalistic". They were going to attempt to prohibit all of Budo in Japan. But the Budoka(martial artist) tried to survive this situation. They insist to GHQ,
...Budo is more like sports...
I know this situation was very hard to survive for martial artists. I am not going to blame them. I believe they didn't have many choice.

But there is a regrettable case. The time of Tokyo Olympic, IOC did suggestion with Judo as the official competition of the Olympics to Kodokan(Judo organizaton), if Kodokan accept to the weight class system. Unfortunately, IOC totally didn't understand the meaning of Bugei, even Budo.
...Kodokan accepted...
I can say the real Judo was dead at that time.
By the way, my sensei have studied Judo before Tokyo Olympic. He said both are totally different.

After these two impacts, the number of ryuha(流派, school of Bugei) decrease from over 700 to less than 100.
Also, many current ryuha were recovered from written materials. These Budo ryuha were destroyed by these two impacts.

Today, in Japan, we identify Budo as Budo and Kobudo(古武道). Ko(古) means classical. Kobudo is the Budo which is continued from before modern period.

My field may be in Kobudo. But the way of fighting must advance day by day. Warrior, fighter, samurai, whoever I am, I must think about significance of the fights all the time. Therefore, I am not "classical" or "antique". That is the reason why I use "BUGEI" which is the original meaning of Budo.

Budoka(武道家) can be translated as martial artist. But, the meaning of -ka(家) is family, house and group.
In short, Budoka means the head or leader of a martial arts group.

I am not aiming that way. I am individual person who is chasing the truth of Bugei.

Maybe Budoka need authority, rank, big dojo and big number of students. Collecting of many techniques, data, informations make him satisfy as Budoka.

I am not. I don't be satisfied by such a thing. And I believe Bugeisha is independent, individual and lonely.

If you expect too much to the authority of ryuha, it can be not your Bugei.
Ryuha gives only minimum chance such as sensei, fellow, sensei and skill to you.
I can say these are the tools. You can use them with deep respect.

But if you use incorrectly, you will go to evil way.
Even if you use them correctly, you can't be proud of it. Because Bugei is originally the way of kill, it was very sinful skill.

Silently, just keep trying to best for others.
Maybe you can mutter your joy in your mind...


独り立つ
己が剣に
映える業

誰が為にか
我を挑まん



SD101008 Fudoan Hekishusai