1936 meeting of masters - Commemorating the establishment of basic kata of karate do in 1937
Chotoku Kyan - Kentsu Yabu - Como Hanashiro - Chojun Miyagi front from left
Shinpan Shiroma - Sinpan Gusukuma - Choryo Maeshiro - Chosin Chibana - Genwa Nakasone back from left
In one word "DO"
The de-emphasis of the Ji Hands (Shaolin Hands of the Bubishi) and emphasis of the Karate fist and punch came at about the same time as the change from the meaning of the name Kara-Te (from "China Hand" to "Empty Hand"). Further it again morphed from the "Empty Hand" to "The Way of the Empty Hand" (Karate Do).
The masters of old trained together as well as mapped the path for Karate to follow in the future. And for mass adoption and use (especially for training youth), the true art must be changed to secure the real meanings for the dedicated few. Many accredit or blame Gichin Funakoshi for the radical changes and of course he was a major proponent,but would he have done this alone in that time and in that environment.
The hands were changed in essence from sharp knives with penetrating focus into the internal body and became instead, strong bludgeons with massive power for the external body. The method, the focus, the depth all morphed into more of a physical exercise than a "life protection" art (Taika Seiyu Oyata - the true pioneer in the public re-education of Kyusho).
The reasons are many, but we now have a chance to reclaim the Kara-Te of Old, not to dismiss or de-emphasize the modern Karate Do, but rather to supplement the art for future generations to decide which path to follow.
Read the Old Masters own words in the Extended Blogs
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There is a great link with historical images (in the extended blog) that are very rare and do not show up on internet searchs... if you like Martial History take a look at this page!
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