Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Statement of Isshin, Concentration the Art blog

Bushi NoTe Isshinryu is the art taught by Victor Smith, student of Tom Lewis and Charles Murray.

In response to several recent questions, I feel it is proper to define our purpose.

Karate takes place on the dojo floor, wherever that happened to be. The blog has one purpose that being to document our Isshinryu and subsidiary practices for the instructors of Bushi No Te. They come from the experiences of Victor Smith, under Tom Lewis and Charles Murray (in 1974 – 1979) and sharing with various friends (among which are Ernest Rothrock 1979 on, Tristan Sutrisno (1980 – 1993) and Sherman Harrill (from 1995 till 2002) as well as traning with John Kerker). The subsidiary practices covering a very wide range of arts (Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Indonesian, Burmese and other practices are use to enhance the Isshinryu experience, but Isshinryu remains our primary focus.

For example I study Yang Tai Chi Chaun, these past 35 years, and Yes which may have influenced my Isshinryu, but I do not teach Tai Chi as part of the program. First I honor those who shared so freely of their arts with me. Secondly we believe these studies aid each students development. I do not join organizations, I have kept to the same instructors for 40 years. Nor am I trying to influence others in Isshinryu to change their practices, I have too much respect for them to ever do so. This is just our way.

Along with my martial studies I have had occasion to try and learn as much about the Okinawan arts from the literature of those instructors who published in the 1920’s and 1930’s. These studies are not a conscious part of our classes, but I am sharing here for Bushi No Te instructors for their use. I remain interested in how the Okinawan arts developed, and this literature tells us much about those earlier times.

I am glad to share this material freely as if one has done the work to understand this, they are free to use it. As for our studies, I share but as the students (and instructors) have and do experience this art on that dojo floor, they live the reality. In turn what I share is mostly sho or ni dan performances.  Just the stage to pass through and rarely full power performances, I believe the art should be left open ended, not defining the best leaving future development of greater achievement.

Thank You
Victor Smith
Bushi No Te Isshinryu
Derry, NH USA

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