Martial Arts

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Martial Arts 武道 Budo and Fudo Myo-O 不動明王
kenkaku, kenkyaku 剣客 swordsman
bushidoo 武士道 Bushido

fudooshin 不動心 the immovable heart, calm spirit
- - - mushin 無心 "without mind"

fudoochi 不動智 immovable spirit or wisdom

. Fudo Shin, The Immovable Spirit 不動心 .


- quote
Lessons on Practice from the Martial Arts
One of the principle attributes of a martial artist is Fudo Shin. This means to have the immovable spirit of Fudo Myo-o, who is one of the protector gods within the popular Japanese Shingon school of Buddhism. At the gates of hell he waits to assist those who have strayed from the path. He assists them with the rope of truth and his sword cuts through delusion to help those in need of enlightenment.

The Bushidō code is typified by seven virtues:

Rectitude (義, gi)
Courage (勇, yuu)
Benevolence (仁, jin)
Respect (礼, rei)
Honesty (誠, makoto or 信 shin)
Honour (誉, yo)
Loyalty (忠, chuu)
- source : enlightenmentward.wordpress.com


- quote
Martial Arts: Defining Martial Concepts
Fudo: - The Concept of Immovability

By Christopher Caile

Fudo is a Japanese term often used in Buddhism, especially in Zen and Esoteric Buddhism (Mikkyo) to represent a mental state -- one of immovability, not physically or literally, but in mind, one that is not captured, or moved, or dwells, or loiters on a thought or in a focus - a total unobstructed awareness and focus on everything, thus not moving with, or fixed upon something (limited by a focused attention).

In the martial arts the character "shin," meaning spirit, heart or will, is often added to the root "fudo" to become "fudoshin," a term meaning calm spirit, even when faced with danger, without fear or confusion, that does not dwell or become fixed on anything. This was the highest attainment of spiritual skill only attainable when the mind is totally focused on the totality of sensory input and free of thoughts and emotions - detached but aware and present. A related term "mushin" also is often used to mean "without mind" (not occupied by thought or emotion). (1)

Using the "fudo" root, other related terms include "fudo-chi," meaning immovable spirit or wisdom that can't be influenced, or confused, "fudotai" or immovable body, and "fudoshisei" or immovable stance and "fudo-dachi" or "immovable stance" also sometimes referred to as a "preparation stance" (as in the initial and final stance in kata, one that allows the participant freedom of movement and action in any direction).

The concept of "Fudo" is also important to martial artists. The famous Zen priest Takuan in his famous three part treatise titled "Fudochi Shinmyoroku" ("The Mysterious Records of Immovable Wisdom") identifies Fudo-Myo-o attributes as they apply to Japanese (Samurai) swordsmanship. He notes the Fudo Myo-o's grasp of the sword in his right hand, his body standing firmly with mind immovable (detached and not distracted), looking at something but not stopping the mind during a flow of action or combat. He warned the Samurai against stopping the mind on a particular object, emotion or thought, noting that such stopping clutters (stops) the mind, something that curtailed the performance of technique.

The most famous Japanese swordsman known today is Miyamoto Masashi. He too was influenced by Fudo Myo-o. "Fudo" and its derivative concepts (noted above) represent a central concept in Masashi's strategy of combat (that reflect Takuan's tenets), (3) ideas he later encapsulated in his famous text on strategy, "The Book of Five Rings."

Even today many martial artists use Zazen (seated Zen meditation), chants (some derived from Esoteric Buddhism), and other to clear, fortify and purify the mind. Standing and/or meditating under a cold waterfall is another similar practice. Morihei Ueshiba, the founder of Aikido, is famous for this practice (which he termed Misogi) of ritual purification. (4)

It should be noted, however, that in modern times most martial artists who use these practices do so to enhance their mental and spiritual discipline, and to clarity their awareness and mind, ends that are separate from any religion or religious doctrine.

Modern martial artists also express similar concepts of the immovable mind. Mas Oyama (founder of Kyokushinkai karate and one of my first karate teachers), for example, used to tell me that the ideal karate mind is that of a person who could walk through a burning building without fear -- a very Fudo Myo-o image.

Kaicho Tadashi Nakamura (founder of Seido Karate and my current karate teacher) has said that a true karate-ka must be present in the now, the present moment, totally absorbed in action, mind void of distraction (thought or emotion) and spirit supreme.

Author's Note:
Two other articles on FightingArts.com give practical advice related to the concept of "no mind." See: "Fighting Zen - How Meditation Can Enhance Your Fighting Skills" and is "Controlling The Flinch, The Blink and The Turn Away."

- - - Footnotes:
1-Mushin or "no mind" is also a very popular concept in Zen where meditation is used to free the mind of thought or emotions while simultaneously developing awareness, and focus, not on just one spot or image, but on everything perceived.

2-Few Samurai before the Edo period actually practiced Zen, although later it became popular.

3-Masashi is also noted for his brushwork and drawings, one being a remarkable 18 inch high wood carving he made of Fudo Myo-o. Masashi is also known for his practice of ritually purifying himself under ice cold waterfalls. There is no evidence, however, that Masashi actually practiced esoteric Mikkyo Buddhism in addition to his study of Zen, although he was influenced by Fudo Myo-o.

4-When I visited Ueshiba's summer retreat and dojo in Iwama, Japan in 1994 (later the home dojo of Seito Sensei), students talked about the waterfall in the nearby hills that Ueshiba has often used for this practice. _
- source : www.fightingarts.com/reading


Fudo like a swordsman holding the sword in both hands
- source : Eisei Bunko Museum


. Miyamoto Musashi 宮本武蔵 (1584 - 1645) .  
- Introduction -

Said to be carved according to a design by Musashi, like a swordsman (kenkaku 剣客) holding the sword in both hands.
About 70 cm high, made from kusu 楠 camphor wood.
- source : www.ryu-sho.co.jp/products

Half-seated Fudo said to be carved by Musashi himself.


. Takuan Sōhō 沢庵 宗彭 (1573–1645) .

Fudochi shinmyooroku 不動智神妙録 Fudochi shinmyoroku
- source : www.bushidoart.jp

The Miracle of Immovable Wisdom

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The Unfettered Mind:
Writings of the Zen Master to the Sword Master

William Scott Wilson

A religious teacher, painter, poet, calligrapher, gardener, and tea master, Takuan was familiar with all sorts of people and was able to reach all of them. Among the people he touched was the official swordsmanship instructor of the first three Tokugawa shoguns, Yagyu Tajima-no-kami Munenori, the youngest son of Yagyu Sekishusai Munetoshi, founder of Yagyu Shinkage-ryu hyoho (strategy and swordsmanship).

The Unfettered Mind is an excellent translation of several of Takuan's most significant works on Japanese martial arts. Even today, they are read by Japanese for their profound insights of the human condition and on the proper way to live one's life.

The first of these, Fudochi shinmyoroku (here, The Mysterious Record of Immovable Wisdom) is a letter from Takuan to Munenori. It deals with the myriad practical, technical, psychological, and philosophical aspects of combat. It goes beyond them, however, to discuss how the swordsman can, by concentrating on his art, become an integrated human being.

The second essay in this collection, Reiroshu (The Clear Sound of Jewels), discusses the basic nature of humanity and how to discern what is correct and what is merely a product of personal desire, and extends the argument to knowing how to understand the balance of life and death and, very important for a warrior serving a feudal lord, when and how to die.

The final piece, Taiaki (Annals of the Sword of Tai-a), is an examination of the psychological aspects of combat, particularly in dealing with oneself and the opponent, and of overcoming the tendency of the mind to delude itself. In combat, this would lead to the exponent's death; in life, it precludes the individual from attaining a clear understanding of the nature of reality and attaining ultimate freedom from causality.
- source : www.koryu.com/store


Morihei Ueshiba 植芝盛平 Ueshiba Morihei
(December 14, 1883 – April 26, 1969)
was a martial artist and founder of the Japanese martial art of aikido.

He is often referred to as "the founder" Kaiso (開祖) or Ōsensei (大先生/翁先生), "Great Teacher".
© More in the WIKIPEDIA !


Samurai encountering Fudo Myo-o at a graveyard

source : commons.wikimedia.org

. Utagawa Kuniyoshi Utagawa 歌川国芳 .


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Shinden Fudo Ryû - Daken Taijutsu no Kata.
(The Immovable Heart School)

The densho of the Bujinkan Ryû
This “modern” densho should primarily be regarded as basic manual for daily training. It is not a translation of the original densho but an adaptation of the techniques of the individual schools taught in the Bujinkan. In the Japanese language, densho means transmission. Historical densho, which often have been composed in a cryptical way, are not suitable for daily training.

This book series is meant to be a modern transfer of an old tradition. The feature of this book is that the individual motion sequences are shown by means of illustrations in order to focus on the performance of the individual techniques and kata. Concise explanations are completing this work. The appearance and content are eminently suited as practical guide.

Author: Carsten Kühn
- source : pbbstore.setech-co.com


. - Join Fudo Myo-O on facebook - Fudō Myō-ō .


. Pilgrimages to Fudo Temples 不動明王巡礼
Fudo Myo-O Junrei - Fudo Pilgrims .



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