Christmas Wishes

ninja-christmasHello Ninjutsu Fans!

What a great time of the season, cold weather a little snow, great training, and fantastic students and friends! So as we start the last day before Christmas, I would like to say Merry Christmas to all and I hope you receive all the Ninja gifts you wanted for this special day!

Bufu Ikkan

Sensei Steve L.

A Ninja Recipe!

Well, here is a quick recipe that I learned when I started eating more Japanese inspired meals. Traditionaly farmers and common Japanese workers ate a variety of vegetables with rice as a main portion of their diet. So here is one that packs a whole lot of nutrition in a small package!

Hourensou no Gomaae

spinach2 Spinach sesame salad.

Spinach is loaded with calcium and iron, and is a great source of fiber. We like this recipe because spinach provides so many nutrients in a such a small package.

Yield: 2 servings

Time: 5 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 bunch of spinach (hourensou)

Spices

  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds
  • 2 tbsp ground sesame seeds

Preparation

  1. Boil spinach for 3 minutes (until slightly wilted)
  2. Submerge in cold water then wring out the leaves inside a paper      towel
  3. Chop spinach into 2″ pieces
  4. Mix sugar, soy sauce, and ground sesame in a bowl, then combine      with spinach and mix
  5. Spinkle with whole sesame seeds
  6. Serve!

Bufu Ikkan

Warrior Randomness

Warrior Randomness

Both in the modern and ancient days, having a predetermined schedule or route, can or would be an extremely vulnerable weakness in your defense. Appearing to be “random” in your coming and goings goes a long way in your personnel security. Even now in the daily conflicts that security and military operatives are engaged in, they work very diligently on creating  “randomness” to their daily activities.

I was at a Taikai several years ago when someone in the Q and A session with Soke Hatsumi asked “what would you do if someone was waiting on the roof across the street with a rifle trained on your door waiting for you to come out” answer, “I would go out the back” . Perfect randomeness, not knowing if someone was waiting for him or not he varied his daily patterns to increase his personnel protection! Now being random is not as easy as it seems, we are all creatures of habit and pattern, this is what society and civilizations have created so that we can be more efficient and effective, but you can begin to change this! You can break your patterns, but it will be difficult and take work.

Here is your lesson and exercise to begin your training:

1)      Look at you daily pattern and write out your daily activities, notice the patterns that you start to see. Maybe it’s get gas at the same station on the same day each week, or stopping for coffee at your favorite coffee shop etc. Knowing your own patterns is jest step one, but at least you know what they are and can break them when necessary.

2)      Let’s take a common easy pattern you fall into: your commute from home to work/school and back. Map out your route and is this the same route you take each day, at the same time, in the same vehicle etc? I am pretty sure the answer is yes. So, now create three or more routes to and from those locations, and do you have the opportunity to switch vehicles? Take public transit? Ride a bike etc? all alternatives to break up your pattern.

Just the other day, I put myself through this exercise and came up with over 27 routes to and from my work location, and I didn’t even add multiple vehicle options and I think I even missed a whole number of other options. You may never know when you may need this type of option, but during a recent highway shutdown due to an accident, I was able to quickly reroute myself and make it home in record time! (Ninjutsu skills at work!)

More to come on a Warrior’s Randomness!

Bufu Ikkan

 

Japan’s ninjas heading for extinction

Well, as I was scanning the various news journals yesterday, I came upon this interesting piece:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-20135674#prclt-hThG02Ue?utm_source=Dec+8+BTW&utm_campaign=BTW+Dec+8&utm_medium=email

Now I have never heard of this gentlemen, but it is an intersting piece and speaks about Soke Hatsumi as well.

Bufu Ikkan

 

Words of Wisdom

“There is no safer place than the dojo. Therefore the students have to go outside the training hall to discover things for themselves, rather than always relying on being taught. I can only teach that approach, that feeling, that special sense. That’s all I can teach ultimately. So it could be said that I can perhaps teach you to be your own teacher.” Soke Hatsumi

When I heard these words from Soke Hatsumi, it hit home, I have been training as long as I can remember with various teachers of the martial arts and esoteric skills I wanted to develop further. Throughout the years I voraciously studied written, video, and one on one, in a daily fashion to increase my knowledge and chip away at my short comings.  With 2013 quickly coming I cannot wait to further my own experiences and skills, but not only this, 2013 will be a time for me to give back to all of you faithful students, readers and fans.

Stay tuned, I am on the 12 posts to Christmas!

Bufu Ikkan

Takamatsu and the Yakuza

Just a quick story from Soke Takamatsu’s past:

Takamatsu Sensei was once in a shop, when several Yakuza gangsters came in and demanded protection money from the frightened owner. Takamatsu grabbed one of them, and locked him in the shop. The others he sent back to their boss, telling them to say that “Jutaro” (a name he used in his youth) was in town. The boss sent a message back saying the shop would be left alone. It is not known if the Yakuza boss was a friend of Takamatsu, or if he was beaten in a fight by Takamatsu as a child.
About the time that he was 65 years old, while he was out walking, he came across several youths taunting an old man and his young daughter. The thugs had been harassing the man for protection money, which was something he could not afford. Takamatsu stepped forward, and told them to leave the man alone. The gang of youths were not afraid of Takamatsu, until he called their leader ‘Bozo’ (head shaved boy). Calling their leader Bozo was an insult that few would dare to say.
Takamatsu again said that they should leave the man and his daughter alone, and then he told them to go back to their boss and tell him that Moko no Tora (Mongolian Tiger) said that they should leave these people alone. Bozo sent one of his men to their gang leader, who had inherited the gang of over 15,000 members from his father. He immediately rushed to the scene to see Takamatsu. He said that he thought that Moko no Tora was dead. At once he agreed to leave the family alone, out of fear of Takamatsu. The leader then sent bundles of flowers to the family in apology.

Kajutsu

Kajutsu

If you are keeping in touch through our Facebook page, you’ll notice the recent Ninja Hachimon post. One of these “gates” is the study and use of Kajutsu (fire) in your training studies, so let’s take a brief look at “kajutsu”  fire skills. Fire can purify water, cook food, signal rescuers, provide warmth, light and comfort, help keep predators at a distance,  cause massive destruction, create smoke, heat additional objects, destroy printed material, etc, etc. Fire has a multitude of purposes and can be a most welcome friend and companion when you are lost or in a survival situation.

Here are a few bullet points for the use of fire in a survival situation:

1)      Always have a minimum of two methods in which to light a fire on your person or in your EDC kit.

2)      A few small fires provide more heat than one large fire

3)      Collect firewood you think will get you through a night and then double it

4)      Conserve fuel by making a “star fire”; where the ends of large logs meet in the fire only, push inward as more fuel is needed

5)      Create a reflector of stacked logs, or utilize a space blanket to reflect the heat toward you ,the group, or into a shelter

6)      Keep your fire contained so that it does not flare up or spread outside the immediate fire ring

Now here is your quick lesson: today prepare a EDC kit that contains 2 methods of lighting a fire, and then go out in the backyard and time yourself to see how fast you can light a fire. Now of course this is pretty simple, right? Well now do it on a windy or rainy day, now that will add some difficulty to the lesson.

Bufu Ikkan