SPIRITUALITY

AMATSU TATARA

The words Amatsu Tatara are not well known. However, the knowledge of the secret scrolls and books of the Amatsu Tatara are well known to special Japanese scholars, martial artists and spiritual experts. It is very difficult to explain the Amatsu Tatara because it is traditionally intended for a special Grandmaster or special priest. For this reason it has been kept very secret.

Shoto Tanemura is the 58th Grandmaster of Amatsu Tatara Bumon (martial arts) and Shumon (spiritual). He feels the time for his true mission has come and that is to show the world what Amatsu Tatara is.

Amatsu means Heaven or Nature. Tatara means the highest secret teaching system of martial arts and original Shinto spirit.

The Amatsu Tatara Hibumi (secret scrolls) are special scrolls about all martial arts, spiritualism and humanism. These were written about 700 BC by the King of Mima as the history of Japan.

Grandmaster Takamatsu Toshitsugu Sensei had mastered the Amatsu Tatara Bumon Shumon and made better known the word of Amatsu Tatara by his explanations after World War II.

He taught and gave these teachings to his highest students: Grandmaster Sato Kinbei Sensei, Grandmaster Kimura Masaji Sensei, Grandmaster Ueno Takashi Sensei, etc. ...

NINNIKU SEISHIN

Ninja Seishin Towa,
Shin Shin Shiki O Shinobu,
Ninniku Seishin O Konpon To Suru.
Chijoku O Shinonde Urami O Hojisaru,
Nintai Seishin O Yashinau Kotoni Hajimaru Mono De Aru.
Nin Towa,
Kokoro No Yueni Yaiba O Oite,
Yaiba De Hito O Kizutsuketari Suruyona Mono Dewa Naku,
Kajo Waraku,
Hana No Gotoki Joai O Motte,
Heiwa O Tanoshimu Mono De Aru.
Yueni,
Tai O Motte Shizen Ni Aite No Ken O Sake.
Sugata O Kesu,
Kyojitsu Tenkan No Myo O E,
Iccho Kuni No Tame Toka,
Gi No Tame Ni,
Chi, Sui, Ka, Fu, Ku,
No Dai Shizen O Riyoshite.
Aite O Seisuru Koto Ga,
Ninja No Konpon Gensoku De Aru.

Original by Grandmaster Takamatsu Toshitsugu Sensei

TRANSLATION

"The essence of 'Ninniku Seishin' is the spirit of the Ninja who has the power to use patience together with the body, mind and subconscious. It is this power that one must develop by training hard. The result will lead to the ability to pocket any insult and later throw it away together with all traces of resentment (Nintai Seishin). The true meaning of 'Nin' is having a heart as peaceful, joyful and lovely as that of a flower (Kajo Waraku). One should never place the blade before the heart. It is also very important to acquire a good knowledge of diversionary tactics using both the heart and body, so that in emergencies one will be able to disappear. This is known as 'Kyojitsu Tenkan', and is for defeating evil with the powers of Earth, Water, Fire, Wind and Air for justice, in the defense of oneself, or one's country."


AMATSU TATARA REIHO

What is truely mysterious? If I use another word to explain the meaning of it, I would say it is "awareness". It's a true mystery. To explain what I mean by this, let us take the example of a deathly ill patient being examined by a Western medicine Doctor and an Oriental herbal Doctor. The former tells the patient he can't be helped, while the latter can treat him effectively. Another parallel is that of a person succeeding in doing something that he has been thought by others to be impossible to do.

Simply speaking: "Imagine a bicycle". Looking at it, we can clearly understand what it is for, and how to use it. Yet in the case of the human body, such clarity is non-existant. When seeing a model of it, we can't perceive the entirety of it. In the not so distant past, people thought that air machines were an impossibility. But now such things are common, discovered through the efforts of human ability. So I feel there is still unlimited items to be made through human ingenuity. I feel for example that the present aircraft which require so much space for landing and take off, in the future will be able to land and take off vertically with another option of being able to hover in mid air.

Taking into consideration the working of the conscious and subconscious, there is no limit to these abilities. Yet with the human body there are physical limits imposed. Take the case of a person having a strong subconscious, they are able by the control of it to lessen the pain and injuries of burns when fire is applied to certain parts of the anatomy. This amazes the average person who thinks such things are miracles. Yet understand that even with utmost patient training in this, still there is a point where the fire will overcome. But this kind of training is equal to that of training the spirit.

This is the true miracle event, the power of the human spirit, which is the combination of "the miraculous, the mysterious and faith" being akin to natural religion. From these 3 the true super sense can be developed. As an academic theory this is called "Amatsu Reiho" (special knowledge for the use of the spirit of Heaven).

We are not only the people of one nation or religion, indeed we are universal beings. So it is that we must all make effort to try and contemplate all things in a benevolent light. This is the very foundation of what it means to be human. Consciousness and subconsciousness are the 2 forms of awareness. If a person is cast totally in his subconscious mind, he can experience ghosts and is too vulnerable to physic influences. On the other hand, the person using only his conscious mind can catch nothing, even if he tries with all his might. Parents worried about their sons going to war, constantly think and pray for them, through which they make a link through which the spirit of their child can communicate with them. So it is that strong motivation, visualizations, prayers or desires when continously repeated with faith, are put in into the subconscious mind, so that they are likely to be realized on the material plane. In that point or focus the power of belief can be effective.

Grandmaster Takamatsu Toshitsugu Sensei

Note from Grandmaster Tanemura Tsunehisa Shoto Sensei:

The relationship of the conscious and subconscious is the academic theory for "Shiryugaku" (study of religion and spirit). This theory applies to hypnotism, Kiaijutsu, Shingenjutsu (mental powers), prayers and fortune-telling. Having understanding of it, one can comprehend. This theory is interwoven through all levels of Shinto, Mikkyo, Buddhism, Shugendo and Ninpo.


KITO RYU TEN NO MAKI

Following are some excerpts explaining the main ideas of "Hontai" (true body).

The "Hontai" means Shinrikyorei (the condition of nothingness). The purpose of this is "Shinkifudo" (or Fudoshin = immovable heart). When you meet the enemy and a feeling rises up that this is the enemy, then already the heart is moving. If the heart is already moving this is no good. If you can look at and meet with the enemy with "Fudoshin" (immovable heart) and keep completely relaxed then this is already the "Hontai". We can say that this is the "Fudochi" (wisdom of Fudoshin).

To get the "Fudoshin" like "God's spirit" we must effort in our daily lives. By having this spirit and an enemy stands before you, you can completely consume him. This we may say is the first timing. For example if something is begun by the enemy and I am in the state of "Shinkifudoshin", the enemy will be unable to do anything soon. "So I can surely promise victory".

Many different Ryu often refer to "Hontai". The meaning of "Hontai" is well explained in the Kito Ryu scroll. So I will make an explanation. This "Hontai" contains everything about the backbone of Taijutsu and the fundamentals of the spiritual part. This "Hontai" equals the heart condition. It is like a straight wave up peace that doesn't move up or down. The mind/spirit quality equates to the deepest state of the soul. This spirit is when you can look at anything - something can happen, but you are not surprised, never moved. This is the true "Fudoshin". The atmosphere can't be completely conveyed by words. It can't be understood only by reading.

Yet if the reader of this has a high grade spirit then upon reading these words he can readily and immediately understand. Such a grade of person has the state of a great Master or Grandmaster. And the scroll goes on to say that in meeting the enemy, have an immovable heart and stay peaceful as like the enemy and you are one.

© Grandmaster Tanemura Tsunehisa Shoto Sensei (Bu-Fu Magazine)


THE TEACHINGS OF BU-FU

The following essay is the teachings of Bu-Fu (warrior-wind) and an example of what one's heart, as a warrior, should be like. Please read it over and over, nurture and find its spirit within yourself.

As a warrior, one should constantly practice awareness. From the moment one awakes in the morning; one should keep a watchful eye on his own behaviour and manners, his conduct, never forgetting the meaning of humanism. These are all Bu-Fu. Never act violently nor be rough in nature, and at no time you should take life lightly. Try to build up a gentle lifestyle without hurrying through it. Consciously relax. Be not afraid of life; allow yours to be gentle and rich in love, in accord with the spirit of "Kajo Chikusei" or "Kajo Waraku", a flower's heart, the spirit contained within the growing bamboo.

If you are proud of the martial arts, do not tarnish their image by acting violently. People often say that we should bring relief to those who suffer, stand up against those who oppress others and knock them down. However, be also cautious of the weak, never relax in their presence for, at times, they themselves turn into oppressors. Be not one who seeks battles. If you wish to use this martial art, it should be for the good of those in need, who truly are both good and honest, never in the cause of the dishonest and evil. Those who follow these maxims may be termed true warriors.

If you are ridiculed or humiliated, do not allow it to move your heart; laught it off instead. It is this type of heart, which contains the truly strong spirit of Nin, patience and perseverance.

The true spirit of Nin lies also in the ability of not drawing one's "Katana", sword, too often, doing so rather, only at times of intense need. A warrior must never forget this type of heart. Let your heart be strong and your spirit be full of vigor, resembling the autumn sleet on fields shimmering in the sunlight, and with love as that murmured by the fresh wind of spring.

To attain this type of heart, a good command of both philosophy and the martial arts in true balance is of the utmost importance. Once obtained, the warrior is then a true servant of Bu-Fu.

To begin learning the Ninja warrior-way, the study and cultivation of culture and philosophy and a heart full of evil-dispelling light is essential. One must have a flower's heart and honesty, should be as clean-cut and straight, as a blade cuts through a bamboo stalk. Allow your heart to grow the power to solve all of life's problems. Do not rely on your head alone, learn through your body as well. If one is able to comprehend these essentials, he is sure to find his Bu-Fu flowing within his body and heart.

Finally, one must turn all the above into reality, strive to accomplish it all, so as to truly be a servant of Bu-Fu.

Let us train!

Grandmaster Tanemura Tsunehisa Shoto Sensei


PROLOGUE OF RELIGION

In statements from sacred books and scrolls we are told about the "Prologue Of Religion", how prior to present times (resembling World War II) there was the natural powers in existance and the succesful work of Heaven to bring all into harmony.

Over 1 million years ago, the step by step process of the implementation of Heaven's plan ... In the Christian Bible it's referred to as "Genesis" when eventually religion was planted by the seeds of necessity. From sacred Buddhist texts there is the telling how before "Miroku" came down from Heaven, he sent his messenger the "King of Tenrin" before him to prepare the way and bring under control the destructive forces. This being like a Christian Bible referring to a Golden Age of Paradise being close to Heaven. To reside in such, one must have a pure and clean heart. From the point of view of Heaven glancing down upon mankind it is said: "A thousand years is as a day, and a day is as a thousand years". From Heaven the passing of 3.000 - 5.000 years seems but a second.

Before the start of recorded history, in Japan the age previous to the ascension of the Imperial throne by Emperor Jinmu was called the "Age of the Gods". In Japan, Kami (Gods) were also seen as meaning "Mitama" (God's spiritual soul). This referring to how in those ancient days many pure person were infused by the powers of the Gods and elevated to a unique station in the eyes of their fellow humans. These people became peacemakers being as they had become "Shin Rei" (avators). The Gods and Shin Rei were not conceived of as just protecting Japan, this is a wrong thinking limited mind's idea. But that the blessings of the God's fall upon virtuous people anywhere, this is it's true wide and deep perspective.

Other countries with their exalted Gods and their hierarchy are the same as in the case of "Jehovah". Historically when talking about "Bonten Tentei" (The King of Heaven), for example, we can understand the many difficulties inherent in the deep underlying relationships of such. This referring to such "Shin Rei" cases as: Shaka, Koshi, Christ, Mohammed, ... . Going to the roots of the matter, the true point can be clearly seen as the same thing in all cases. So it was regarded in old Japan that the Kami not only beheld Japan but all places; and not only mankind but, all grasses, trees, animals, ... . The Gods having connections with all matter. So because of this, the present man can be gifted with true vision of light. He can throw off limited dogmatism and egoism. Always he takes steps to open out more, seeing the truth of the friendly "Shin Rei", and having at last to reach a correct belief.

So there is welcome for Brahmins, Christians, Moslems, Buddhists, Kaikyo sects, Kurenaimanji sects, Kotaikyo sects, Tenrikyo sects, Konkonkyo sects, followers of William Dowdrebere, Bahains, ... . On the true path of religion for the true believers truely the names of sects, cults or whatever doesn't matter; everyone is seen as a fellow traveller on the way. We see a lot of those two-faced ministers of whatever philosophy who speak eloquently of the truth and righteousness, but inside don't believe at all or practice what they preach. Any person who is a true believer, regardless if they are Christian, Buddhist or whatever and who has an open spirit, with a light surrounding their heart, is truly of another world!

Garakutabujin (Grandmaster Takamatsu Toshitsugu Sensei) - 3 April 1949


SPECIAL VISIT TO TARA

On 23 August 1999 Grandmaster Tanemura Tsunehisa Shoto Sensei arrived in Ireland for a 3-day visit to the Hill of Tara, Newgrange, Loughcrew, Knowth and some other interesting places. He was accompanied by 10 other Genbukan/KJJR Dojo-Cho from Ireland, England and Belgium.

Ireland has a beautiful large green surface which is very hilly. When arriving at the Hill of Tara we could see a beautiful white horse that was all alone in the meadow. Sensei told us this was already a special sign of Heaven.

Tanemura Sensei first did special Kuji-Kiri to a stone, to break the curse done to destroy Tara. He could strongly feel the bad spirit in the stone placed there by a bad priest. Hereafter we could all suddenly see a white cat coming out of nowhere coming to us. She was very friendly and according to Tanemura Sensei a second good sign. Then we went to the Mound of the Hostages and we could clearly see in the cave the stones with the inscriptures of the 3 spirals. We went further to the main hill to visit the Stone of Destiny. Tanemura Sensei explained the stone is not the true Lia Fail (Stone of Destiny), but we could use it as a focal point because Tara is a sacred place. Here Tanemura Sensei did a very special Kuji-Kiri ceremony to repair the Stone which was already damaged by the curse, supported by all the other Dojo-Cho. It gave us all a deep emotionally feeling.

Tara is a very special place and very old place in Celtic Legend where the royal lines of the "Tuatha de Danann" stretch back into the mists of time and the crowned Kings of Ireland, until approximately 1022 AD.

Tara was the political and religious centre of Ireland where ceremonies were done by Kings and druids in relationship with the Gods. Japan and Ireland have the same legendary history about the Goddess (in Japan Amaterasu) who hid in a cave so the light disappeared of the world. The Gods would then have made music and danced to lure her out of the cave. As soon as she came to take a look what was happening, guards took away the large stone before the cave and the Goddess came back out, so the light came back.

Tanemura Sensei told us afterwards that this was "the most beautiful day of his life". He told us that he could get for the first time a direct contact with Heaven. We all could feel a strong shining light (even when our eyes were closed) appearing above us. Sensei told us that this was "the light of the King of Angels". There truly is a deep connection between Tara and Amatsu Tatara. Even the symbol of the 3 spirals can be found back on ancient Japanese Amatsu Tatara scrolls. This visit left a very deep spiritual impression on all of us.

Text by Chief Dojo-Cho Renshi Filip Poffé
(thanks to Ireland Sanzen Shibu-Cho Kyoshi Martin O'Reilly)