Kukishin Ryu

Amatsu Tatara Kukishin Ryu

Many Ryu-Ha are connected with "Kuki", originating from the Nakatomi (Fujiwara) Clan which later became the Kuki Clan. A famous personage from the clan was Fujiwara no Kamatari and in the 37th generation there was Kuki Takamasa. In 645, during one rebellion, Kamatari was the decisive force that brought it to a halt. From the 38th Emperor Tenchi was given the secret "Amatsu Tatara Hibun" scroll, both as reward and to educate him in his new position as Prime Minister. This scroll contained information to run an effective government and keep a peaceful nation.

In 600 BC, a prince from Karudeia shipwrecked in Japan with three attendants. This Aryan Prince Mimaoh was a reputed scholar on seamanship, astronomy, and philosophy. At Mount Miwa in Nara he joined with the God Empress Amaterasu, and won an appointment as a high government official, with duties including the centralization and effective management of the governing system. When he was made a minister he was presented to the God Empress a special necklace of 72 beads, that beyond being a symbol of office was also a special tool for scrying the future. In Nara, the Council of the Higher Echelon Gods met, proclaiming Amaterasu as Empress (Queen) of Gods and men, presenting her with this necklace. The very talented attendent of the Prince named Hiboko no Mikoto was gifted with 10 jeweled symbols of the Gods for his efforts in their service.

In 550, Buddhist Malays invaded the Yamato area fighting against the Imperial Forces. The base camp was situated at Mount Miwa, and after the Malays were defeated the surrender conditions were contracted. The Malays were given pardon and permission to settle the Iki area. After this the God's Council met again to decide on strategy for future protection of the nation.

It was decided to write a great volume including the true history of Japan, great incidents there of, defensive and offensive tactics, systems of martial arts and weaponry, scrying techniques, governing procedures and systems, including both Tenmon and Chimon.

This treasured scroll took until 10 BC to complete. This became known as the "Amatsu Tatara Hibun no Maki". It was in Tenwa Year 9 - 3rd month in the capitol that Kamatari rewrote the scroll into Kanji from Gods capitals. This single scroll was later divided into 5 volumes, later still being subsectioned into 36 texts with 9 subtitles. Now the main scrolls known of are: Hibun Shiron, Shinpi Kansei no Maki, Kanseiron no Maki, Shinrihen no Maki, Kanagihen no Maki, Hokyo Hiden no Maki, Tenmon Chimon no Maki, Chikujo no Maki, Jinei no Maki, Gunryaku no Maki, Juho Kajutsu no Maki, Kishajutsu no Maki, Kenpo Hishohen no Maki, Sojutsu Hibun no Maki, Naginata Hishohen no Maki, Bojutsu Hishohen no Maki, Jutaijutsu Kappohen no Maki and Bekkan.

In Taisho Year 10 (1920), Takamatsu Sensei was allowed to pen copies of all the priceless Kuki Clan scrolls. He was able to copy almost everything they had. But in Showa year 20 (1945), the Kuki Clan scrolls were destroyed in the firebombing of World War II. Four years later on April 3, Takamatsu Sensei represented the Kuki Clan with beautifully written and bound scrolls that he had rewritten from his own notes.

In 1336, Emperor Godaigo was aided by the Takamasa Clan and he awarded them a higher name "Kuki". Especially Kuki Takamasa was a famous Bojutsu specialist, so the clan was renown for its Bojutsu.

Kukishin Ryu branches are: Kuki Shinden Hyoho, Hontai Kishin Chosui Ryu, Nakatomi Hyoho, Kuki Shinden Happo Bikenjutsu, Tenshin Hyoho Kuki Shin Ryu, Tatara Shinden Ryu, ... . All these were saved by the mighty efforts of Takamatsu Sensei, and no one can claim it isn't so. Takamatsu Sensei was the top genius of martial artists in this age!

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

Kukishinden Happo Biken-Jutsu Taijutsu

This school was originally known as "Kukishin-Ryu Happo Biken-no-Jutsu", or sometimes "Kukishinden Happo-no-Hijutsu".

In the Eiji Era (1141), Izumo Kaja Yoshiteru was a famous expert of Koppo Daken-jutsu, jumping cutting Biken, Chinese Yawara and Bisento Jutsu etc. ... Yoshiteru was of course an expert of his own Kukishin Ryu school as well. However, not content with his level of skill, he committed himself to even more intense training, three years of which he spent in a mountain cave called "Inome Dokutsu" (Dokutsu meaning cave). During this time he underwent special spiritual training, climaxing in a 9-day period in which he was enlightened from the Spirit with techniques of the Martial God. These special techniques allowed him to cast away devils. He gave these special spiritual techniques the name of "Shinriki Nenkatsu Jutsu" and in turn named his school as "Kukishinden Happo no Hijutsu".

The 10th generation Grandmaster Arima Kawachi-no-suke Masayoshi renamed the school "Kukishin-Ryu Happo Biken-no-jutsu".

This Ryuha (school) has nine parts of Daken-Taijutsu, Bo-jutsu, So-jutsu (Yari), Naginata-jutsu, Bisento-jutsu, Jo-jutsu, Jutte-jutsu, Kisha-jutsu, Biken-jutsu, and includes Ka-jutsu (fire techniques), Senban-Nage-jutsu (shuriken), Gunryaku etc. ... Happo refers to the 8 martial arts (Taijutsu, Bojutsu, Sojutsu etc. ...).

The 14th generation Soke Kazama Shinkuro Hidechika named the Ryuha "Kukishinden Happo Biken-jutsu". His sword techniques were fantastic, miraculous even, which prompted him to refer to his Ken-jutsu as Biken-jutsu (Bi read also as Hi, meaning secret). His Biken-jutsu was never defeated.

The 27th generation Soke Takamatsu Toshitsugu said: "Daken-Taijutsu means Daken-jutsu together with Taijutsu. The source and most important part of Budo is Taijutsu. Without a good combination of Tai (body), Waza (techniques) and Seishin (spirit/mind/soul), one will not be skillful when using a sword, spear or Yari etc. It is most important to have a harmonious balance of Tai, Waza and Seishin ...".

Hontai Kukishin Ryu Bojutsu

Hontai Kukishin Ryu Bojutsu has 3 parts which are Hanbojutsu (including Sensudori/Tessenjutsu), Jojutsu and Bojutsu (Rokushaku-Bojutsu). Hanbojutsu is also called Sanjaku-Bojutsu. The length is "Sanjaku" (90.09 cm). The diameter is "Hachibu" to "Issun" (2.4 cm to 3.3 cm). It is made from oak, as red oak was considered the Shogun's tree. The length of this is the same as a sword from tip to tip. Therefore Kenjutsu and Hanbojutsu have a deep relationship.

In 38 AD, the Izumo Area Emperor Takeru fought with the aggressor Hirine. Takeru crushed the head of Hirine with a sword stick. This sword stick was Sanjaku Gosun (108 cm) and attached to one side is a small stone (sized 16.5 cm). These stories are taken from the scroll Amatsu Tatara with special capitals. Hanbojutsu techniques developed in the warring Era and there are two connected stories:

In January Engen 3 (1338), Ashikaga Takauji forces attacked the Emperor Godaigo's forces at Kyoto. The Emperor's side top fighter, who was Kukishin Ryu specialist Ohkuni Taro Takehide, fought with the top fighter of Ahikaga side Yashiro Ujisato. Ohkuni fought using a Rokushaku Yari (spear) and Yashiro fought using a Sanjaku-Hassun's Tachi (long sword). Ohkuni's Yari was cut by Yashiro's Tachi. Suddenly Ohkuni jumped in and hit down on Yashiro with the remaining Sanjaku Bo. Then Ohkuni drew his short sword and cut the neck of Yashiro.

In Tensho 3 (1575) on the 4th of May, the combined forces of Oda and Tokugawa battled with Takeda Katsuyori at Nagashino. The top fighter of the Takeda side and Kurama Ryu expert Suzuki Tangonokami Katsuhisa, who fought using Sanjaku-Gosun's Tachi while horseriding.

The top fighter of the Oda side and the Kukishin Ryu expert was Inaba Kaja Yoshitame (another story is Kuriyama Ukon) who fought using red oak Rokushaku-Bo of an octagon shape while horseriding. Inaba's Rokushaku-Bo was cut in the center by Suzuki's Tachi. And Suzuki tried to cut downward from Daijodan, but Inaba hit up against Suzuki's hands with remaining Sanjaku-Bo piece. Suzuki dropped his Tachi and he received a Yari from his retainer. Suzuki tried to thrust but Inaba changed his body and hit into Suzuki's head with the Sanjaku-Bo. Suzuki collapsed from horse with blood issueing from his mouth and died.

In ancient ages, the Gobu length round shape stone was put on both sides of a Hassaku-Bo. Later, that took off both stones and developed Rokushaku-Bojutsu. In Engen 1 (1336) on December 21st-night, Yakushimaru Kurando Takamasa helped out Emperor Godaigo, who was caught by Ashikaga Takauji. The Yakushimaru group were surrounded by Ashikaga forces of 10.000 soldiers at Kuragari Toge. He fought with the top fighter of Ashikaga side, Satake Kaja Goromaru. His big Naginata was cut by Satake's big Tachi. Suddenly he jumped in and hit the head of Satake using the remaining Rokushaku length Bo. Satake died and Yakushimaru escaped with his group using a special Kuji-Kiri. For this effort, Yakushimaru was given the family name "Kuki" from Emperor Godaigo. Hontai Kukishin Ryu Bojutsu was a tradition from Ohkuni Onihei through the Yakushimaru and Ohkuni families.

Jojutsu was established in 1336 to 1338 from Hanbojutsu, Rokushaku-Bojutsu, Kenpo and from Ohkuni Yukihisa written within the Amatsu Tatara Kangi scrolls. This art was taught by a Kumano area Gyoja (mountain priest).

Nowadays almost all Kukishin Ryu line Bojutsu was taught and developed by Grandmaster Takamatsu Toshitsugu Sensei.

Tenshin Hyoho Kukishin Ryu Bo-Jutsu

In the 1st year of the Engen era (1336) on August 28th, Yakushimaru Kurando Takamasa, who was the 37th generation from a famous bloodline starting with Fujiwara Kamatari, helped Emperor Godaigo escape from Kazan palace.

The Emperor had been trapped at Kazan by Shogun Ashikaga Takauji. To gain entrance, Takamasa dressed as a woman, taking with him a traditional woman's weapon, the Naginata, so that the guards let him pass.

However, he was discovered escaping with the Emperor and he had to fight Satake Goromaru Takenobu, a retainer of Ashikaga Takauji. Goromaru cut the blade end off Takamasa's Naginata, but Takamasa used the metal bands on the bottom end of the remaining Rokushaku Bo, to strike a deadly blow to Goromaru's head. He then fought the rest of Takauji's guards, still using only his Rokushaku Bo and in the end was successful.

In December of the second year of the Engen era (1337), Takamasa was given the family name Kuki (Kukami) by Emperor Godaigo, for his loyalty and successful rescue mission. After that, Takamasa gave more credence to Rokushaku Bojutsu in his martial art Tenshin Hyoho Kukishin Ryu.

On May 4th of the 3rd year in the Tensho Era (1534), Daimyo Takeda Katsuyori's army fought against the combined forces of Daimyo Oda Nobunaga and Daimyo Tokugawa Ieyasu, at Narashino, Aichi prefecture.

During this battle, Takeda's retainer, Suzuki Tango Katsuhisa, fought with Kuriyama Ukon Nagafusa.

Kuriyama attacked Suzuki with his yari, but Suzuki countered with his tachi and cut the yari in two. Using the remaining Sanjaku Bo (Hanbo), Kuriyama struck and killed Suzuki.

After this encounter, Kuriyama raised the importance of Sanjaku Bojutsu training within Tenshin Hyoho Kukishin ryu, as previously it had only included Rokushaku Bo.

Takamatsu Toshitsugu gave this Ryu-Ha (Menkyo Kaiden) to one of his highest students, Kimura Masaji. Kimura Masaji gave Menkyo Kaiden grandmastership and Souden-no-Maki (final teachings scroll) to Tanemura Shoto, on November 10th 1991.

Tenshin Hyoho Kukishin Ryu Ju-Jutsu

The 37th descendent of Fujiwara Kamatari, Yakushimaru Kurando Takamasa was bestowed the name Kukami (which can also be pronounced Kuki) by the Emperor Godaigo. The family tradition of Kamatari Budo Heiho (Martial Arts or Martial Strategy of the Kamatari) was henceforth known and transmitted as Kukishinden Tenshin Hyoho (also called Tenshin Hyoho Kukishin Ryu or Tenshin Hyoho Kukishinden Ryu Bujutsu).

Tenshin Hyoho Kukishinden Bujutsu comes from the Amatsu Tatara line of schools and is a complete Budo system that covers a wide area of skills; Ken-jutsu, Bo-jutsu, Naginata-jutsu, So-jutsu, Kisya-jutsu, Chiku-Jo (castle building), Gun-Ryaku (Military Strategy), Ten-Mon/Chi-Mon etc.

The Amatsu Tatara Hibumi (secret writings of the Amatsu Tatara) has a total of 36 scrolls as well as another 9 supplementary scrolls. These include the Kuki Souden no Maki (Kuki Hisou no Maki), Shiten no Maki (Tenshin Hyoho Shinken Kakki-Ron/Tenshin Hyoho Shumon Souhi-Ron, Tenshin Hyoho Ten-Mon Chi-Mon Hen, Tenshin Hyoho Jochiku-Jinei Senryaku Hen) and Kukishin Ryu Kaiden no Maki (Ryu-No-Maki/Tora-No-Maki /Shin-No-Maki).

During the Meiji, Taisho, and Showa era, Takamatsu Toshitsugu began to fill in the incomplete parts of Kukishinden Bujutsu which had started to disappear. He did a formidable job in bringing this martial art back to life. The reason why we still have Kukishinden Bujutsu today is due to Takamatsu Sensei's achievement.

Kukishin Ryu Jujutsu is made up from and uses the best points of Taijutsu and Daken. This schools system/essence is written down in the 34 scroll of "Amatsu Tatara Kuki Ju-taijutsu Kappo Hen no Maki". In the time of Ishitani Matsutaro it was also called "Mushin Muso Ryu" but Takamatsu Sensei made this complete with his best effort to form Kukishin Ryu Jujutsu. This was taught by Takamatsu Sensei to his top student Kimura Masaji, who in turn taught Tanemura Shoto and gave the complete teachings of this school.