I start off my Japan Report Four video going to Hatsumi Sensei’s house and the Bujinkan Honbu office. I do this on every trip because this is how I submit my rank paperwork for my students. In the video I talk about my “secret” route to his house. I also recall past times when I could just visit and have tea with Soke.
During my walk to his house, I review some of my notes from old classes with Soke. During one class he said 自分の第六感兼ねあいうち Jibun no dairokkan kane aiuchi. This is when you make your intuition match reality. Or, more directly, your intuition is combined with something concrete such as a strike.
Later in that same class, Hatsumi Sensei said 意識をさせない Ishiki o Sasenai. He was telling us not to allow our opponents to sense our intentions. Don’t put out any intention for your opponent to read. I thought it was fascinating to think about dairokkan and the use of intuition while also hiding your intentions. Hatsumi Sensei’s classes were full of subtle lessons like this.
Next, I went to an afternoon class with Nagato Sensei. People sometimes ask me why I haven’t gone to Nagato Sensei’s seminars here in the U.S. Well the answer is simple, I save my money for Japan. For example, Nagato Sensei did a seminar in Ohio. For me to buy round trip airfare from Los Angeles, book a hotel, and pay the Tai Kai fee, the cost is almost the same as one of my Japan trips. I’d rather spend two weeks training in Japan than two or three days in Ohio.
It was nice to train with Nagato Sensei. He had just returned from a Tai Kai in Finland. And he spoke fondly of his trip there.
He started the class like normal by asking someone to demo a technique. Someone showed something that looked like 霧散 Musan. Then Nagato Sensei did henka based on that.
He did a lot of transitions from one punch to another and pass throughs using his elbows. It is easy to be distracted by his hand movements. But he always sets up each technique with perfect distance and good use of his feet.
The class was full like in the days before the pandemic. My training partner was from Germany. At the end another guy from Germany took and passed his Godan test.
Later that evening, I meet up with some skater friends. They were skating “illegally” in a parking structure. I got my camera out and filmed their kick flips along with their ゴン攻め gon zeme spirit. Until a security guard made us move out into the street in front of the デイリーヤマザキ Daily Yamazaki.