Another Bubishi Advocate

In 1934 Sensei Kenwa Mabuni published his book “Seipai No Kenkyu” as a Study of Seipai Kata.  In the book Mabuni Sensei mentions  the "Bubishi" and included the iconic drawings from from Anko Itosu’s copy of the that Bubishi.

From a historical perspective there has been many different theories as to how this highly prized manual first arrived in Okinawa.  Some theorize it was initially brought from China to Okinawa by Tode Sakugawa, while other evidence points to Sokon Matsumura, Yasutsune Itosu and Higaonna Kanryo as all were involved in it's study and dissemination via their personal Karate.  Other stories exist that lead to the White Crane Master "Gokenki" or Tiger Boxing Master "Tang Daiji" bringing the manual back to the Island.  Another possibility is that the Bubishi was brought to Okinawa via the Feeding Crane lineage currently in Taiwan.

Regardless of how and when it arrived, Kenwa Mabuni, out of respect for his instructors, also integrated the Bubishi's coveted information into his Shito Ryu.  This was a vital pillar in his research as it has been with many Okinawan Karate Masters such as Funakoshi Gichin, Itosu Ankô, Higashionna Kanryô, Shimabukuro Tatsuo, Fujita Seiko, Hohan Soken and so many others.  Yamaguchi Gôgen is noted as stating the "Bubishi" was the ”most treasured text“ and Miyagi Chôjun is noted for calling it “the Bible“ of Karate.

As we search and uncover all the great Masters and Founders of Traditional Karate, we find one reoccurring theme in their studies... that is the ancient Bubishi.  We see this influence in all the specific Kata of each style, as well as in the Shaolin Hand formations contained in the Bubishi, as well as the Kata.  But more importantly it is the Kyusho and it's importance in Karate, depicted by the hand postures and their use, their intended targets and their potency.

Mabuni Book with Bubishi (pg. 43) - Free PDF (click this link)


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#Kyusho  -ep