Interesting post re: the Skoss thing

kuoshu

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Seen this on MAP?

Here's a quote from Ron Beaubien over on e-budo.

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Brian R. VanCise

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I will let Don Roley handle this as that is definately his forte. However a couple of things should be said in that Takagi yoshin-ryu Jutaijutsu Happo Biken and Kukishin-ryu Taijutsu Happo Biken are two lines with direct Koryu validation. A couple of sources (for Meik's position) does not clear this matter (their are other's on the opposite side) up and certainly for those of us who have been to Japan this is just a joke. (meik's position) Then again Hatsumi Sensei is one of a kind and so is his lineage. I for one am happy to have met and trained under him.
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althaur

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Out of curiosity, how many boards are you going to put this exact post on?
 

Don Roley

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Interesting that Koushu would quote the post originally posted on e-budo, but no link to the original thread nor any of the responses to it.

Here is some of what I wrote over there.


Oh?

So where is the book on ninjutsu history these people have published? For that matter, where is the specific evidence and such that they studied? I can point to stuff by Koyama, Nawa, etc on the matter. But it really does not look like many of the people doing kenjutsu, etc, have gone through some of the research specific to ninjutsu. In fact, I do believe that Dr. Friday has said words to the effect that he has not researched ninjutsu history and really does not have an interest to do so.

Again, these people are very well informed on what they do and have researched. But they have not published books on ninjutsu history and have shown no evidence to my eyes of ever researching it.
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I do not like the use of the "appeal to authority" logical fallacy. Especially when the authority being cited has made statements about ninjutsu history that are wrong. I prefer to have people put their facts out for everyone to check for themselves rather than say that " I say that XX says YY and who are you to question that?"

I know that just living in Japan for years, speaking the language and studying a few martial arts does not make you an automatic expert in all aspects of history and martial arts. I have read about Shorinji kenpo, seen classes and demos and even have a friend that studies it in Japan. But I would never try to say that I am an expert in Shorinji kenpo. If I say something about it, I would expect to have to back up what I say with facts rather than have my word be enough. I could try to point to the guys I hang out with that study the art and comment on their knowledge of the subject matter, but that does not mean that I have any knowledge or even talked about it. And if we did talk about it, it does not mean I understood the whole picture or are even remembering the conversation correctly.

Just as an aside, I am somewhat amused by the appeal to authority logical fallacy being used by Koushu. First he posts a comment from Skoss and tries to use it to attack Hatsumi. Now he is trying to say that the people that Skoss hangs out with are experts in a very narrow and specific field of history. It is not Skoss that is saying these things in public- nor the people in Japan saying these things in public. It is a case of "I say that X said that Y said something to back up what I want you to believe.

Kuoshu,
If you ever want to deal with the facts to lay out instead of trying to use this logical fallacy of the appeal to authority, I might be willing to debate you in a battle of wits. You might start looking at the evidence and works of Koyama, Nawa and a few others I could mention. How is that for a trumping of your tactic?
 
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kuoshu

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I suggest you drop this now. Your pathetic attempt at trolling will go no better here than it did at MAP.

Why not read the posts by Mr Skoss and Mr Beaubien properly before calling it "hearsay" and "trolling"?
This attitude is precisely why many koryu teachers won't accept students from the X-kans. Instead of respecting authority and knowledge, you just want to make your own voice heard. Why not take the time to learn from people like Mr Skoss and others instead of slaying the bearer of bad news?
It reminds me of the whole tattoo thing on eBudo. When Mr Skoss said that koryu teachers wouldn't accept students with tattoos, everyone decided to argue with him. Instead of making any effort to understand why koryu teachers like him had these rules, it was much easier to just attack him and call him "Victorian".
It's sad that the Internet has given everyone -- expert and beginner -- an equal voice.
 
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kuoshu

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Kuoshu,
If you ever want to deal with the facts to lay out instead of trying to use this logical fallacy of the appeal to authority, I might be willing to debate you in a battle of wits. You might start looking at the evidence and works of Koyama, Nawa and a few others I could mention. How is that for a trumping of your tactic?

Mr Roley,
What would be the point? What proof would you provide?
We have had this discussion before, and all you seem to do is repeat the following points:
1) Mr Hatsumi can prove that he trained with Mr Takamatsu and that he is being honest about that.
2) Koyama Ryutaro found a mention in some old book about someone called Nishina.
3) Mr Takamatsu is dead so we can't ask him.
Unfortunately, you never seem to provide proof that Mr Toda existed and that Mr Takamatsu learned Togakure Ryu from him.
Point 1: Yes, Mr Hatsumi can prove that he learned from Mr Takamatsu. So what? all that means is that he has one more generation of proof than Ron Duncan, Ashida Kim, Frank Dux and the Konigun.
(Please note that Ron Duncan's students can probably prove that they learned from Duncan)
Mr Takamatsu's claims are still as unproven as Ron Duncan and Ashida Kim. If there is proof that this is otherwise than JUST SHOW IT.
Point 2: The Koyama Ryutaro thing is NOT relevant to this discussion at all.So he found a reference to someone called Nishina who MAY or may not be the same person as the ALLEGED founder of the Togakure Ryu 900 years ago. So what?
How on earth is this supposed to be proof that Mr Takamatsu learned this ryuha from Mr Toda?
Ronald Duncan or Ashida Kim can find plenty of old Japanese books that mentions Koga Ryu Ninjutsu, but how does that prove that they actually learned Koga Ryu.
First show me proof that Mr Toda was a real person and that he taught Mr Takamatsu Togakure Ryu Ninjutsu. If you can't even prove this happened only 3 generations ago, how do you expect me to get excited over mention of someone's name who lived 900 years ago? (A rule of thumb: if the same kind of proof would not convince you of Ron Duncan's claims then don't present it as proof of Mr Takamatsu's claims either.)
Point 3: Yes, Mr Takamatsu is dead. But being dead does NOT get him off the hook or mean that his claims can't be questioned an investigated.
Morihei Uyeshiba is dead. But that doesn't mean that his claims can't be questioned. It is very easy for anyone who wants proof to see that he did study with Sokaku Takeda. Another example: Risuke Otake's teacher is dead. But if I want proof that Katori Shinto Ryu is older than Otake's teacher this can be proven too.
So being dead is not an excuse or a reason to simply believe someone's claims.

EDIT: Mr Roley, just for the record, I do not doubt Mr Hatsumi's word about what he learned. I can even sympathise with him to some degree. I'm sure that in the beginning, he probably DID believe what Mr Takamatsu told him.
 
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kuoshu

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Another thing:
Mr Hatsumi has had plenty of opportunities to do so, but has still failed to show any proof that Togakure Ryu goes back beyond Takamatsu.
On the Quest Takamatsu DVD, he displays many many licenses, scrolls and books that were written by Mr Takamatsu. Why didn't he also show any scrolls or documents that preceded Takamatsu? That DVD also showed many photos of him training with Mr Takamatsu. But why not any pictures or anything of Mr Takamatsu training with Mr Toda?
Mr Hatsumi was also given the perfect opportunity to show proof once and for all on the Shinobi Winds documentary by Brandon Alvarez. But for some reason he decided it was beneath him to contribute. This was a ready-made opportunity for him to show a photo, a scroll, a license ... even a goddamn postcard. ANYTHING that would prove Toda was real and that he taught Togakure Ryu to Mr Takamatsu. But instead of showing proof, what does he do? Makes a heart shape with his hands and walks away. :rolleyes:
 

saru1968

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I was going to reply but your posts are just disrespectful in tone and content.
 

Don Roley

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Mr Roley,
What would be the point? What proof would you provide?

I already told you. Get some knowledge about the subject matter instead of trying to hold up someone and say that because they think it is not old, that it is not. That is an appeal to authority logical fallacy. I would much rather deal with facts instead of having someone tell me I must bow down to what hey say their expert says.

After all, to counter your expert, I have pointed out that there is a few experts in Japan that say the opposite. Do you know which are more knowledgeable? Why are you so certain when you don't even know anything about what is going on and won't read the sources I listed?

If someone wants to say that they do not know of enough proof for them to believe the stories, then I could accept it. But to claim that there is proof that Takamatsu is lying requires some sort of proof of your own. Guess what, you don't have it.

I mean, your attitude and outlook on things clearly show that you are a troll and are trying to muddy the waters. For example, take a look at the following quote by you.

Mr Hatsumi was also given the perfect opportunity to show proof once and for all on the Shinobi Winds documentary by Brandon Alvarez. But for some reason he decided it was beneath him to contribute. This was a ready-made opportunity for him to show a photo, a scroll, a license ... even a goddamn postcard. ANYTHING that would prove Toda was real and that he taught Togakure Ryu to Mr Takamatsu. But instead of showing proof, what does he do? Makes a heart shape with his hands and walks away.

Anyone that has been following the boards here knows that Hatsumi did not know that the camera crew was going to show up and was not pleased at all by the sudden appearance without clearance. So there is ample reason why Hatsumi would not show anything to Alvarez. You either know it and are persuing an agenda, or you just do not follow the facts well enough to have a discussion with.
 

Bujin

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kuoshu,

Proving that Toda did exist would not change much now would it? WHat are the chances that someone named Toda lived and died in kobe around the beginning of the 20-th century? Probably quite high. Even if someone could prove this is the "right" Toda what would it prove? Nothing really. Even a picture of Toda together with Takamatsu would not change anything. It would still be possible to doubt the authenticity. Even documents can be forged, dont you say? The thing that is most difficult to lie about is the taijutsu. Just from watching the Taijutsu of the different schools in Bujinkan you should be able to judge if they are Koryu or not.

Regards / Bujin
 

Koryu Rich

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This attitude is precisely why many koryu teachers won't accept students from the X-kans.




You've already admitted over on MAP you've never trained in a Koryu. Yet you keep making statements like the above.

How many instances do you know of a student being turned away from Koryu training based solely on the fact that he was a member of the Bujinkan?

It’s the same as your comments on Koryu Kamae when you compared them to that Gyokko Ryu and Koto Ryu. You said no other Koryu out there has that many Kamae. Yet when asked how many Kamae you think the two Schools have you dodge the question and then ignored the following one about how familiar you are with the Kamae of the various Koryu in existence today.

It is that sort of attitude and approach to this subject that gets people backs up. You don’t actually give the impression that you want to debate the subject rather you just want to prove your point and will cheery pick whatever info is out there to suit your purpose.
 

althaur

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He also seems to be copying his own posts from one forum to another. Kind of reminds me of a broken record.
 

Don Roley

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The thing that is most difficult to lie about is the taijutsu. Just from watching the Taijutsu of the different schools in Bujinkan you should be able to judge if they are Koryu or not.

It is not that easy.

Certainly there are certain things that pop out and tell us that an art is not what it claims. If you are holding the katana like a baseball bat, or leaping through the air with a jumping side kick while holding it, you are not doing Japanese kenjutsu- period. And then there are the many times people have picked up Chinese dao swords for their Japanese art and gotten laughed at on these boards.

But within the koryu, there is a huge variety and differences. If you look at the unarmed stuff from the Yagyu Shingan ryu vs the Takeuchi ryu or the sword from Kashima Shinto ryu with the sword from Maniwa Nen ryu you will find a wide range to fit in. And if someone is really good- they might be able to pull off some sort of fraud.

Take the case of the Kaze Arashi ryu. It is an art that claims to have originated in Japan with some practicioners still here. A few years ago, some of us in Japan tried to run down the training group in Japan and not only we were stonewalled, but some of the answers we were fed did not add up. But the movements were such that experts in the field such as Ellis Amdur and Meik Skoss were originally taken in and thought it was an authentic koryu that had fallen through the cracks.

Here is a link to them working with Meik Skoss at a demonstration with comments by Diane Skoss.

It would look like that their movements say that they are indeed koryu based on the opinions of experts. But look at the following thread and you will see that on further investigation that Amdur now believes that the art was created in America and the senior practicioners know it.

If these experts on Koryu could be deceived, then I do not think there is a snowball's chance in Hell that any of us could say with confidence that an art is koryu based on their taijutsu.

Lets face it, it is an established fact that Takamatsu was a silled practicioner in at least the Takagi ryu and the Kukishin ryu. With that type of background, how hard would it be to make up a similar system of movements? And then there is the fact that there were a hell of a lot of Koryu still alive when Takamatsu was a boy, and most of them died off like the dinosaurs since then. How hard would it be for him to have studied a few and then pass them off as arts with different names and histories. Even if he studied them for only a few months or years, he would still fall within the parameters you find in koryu.

So you really can't look at an art and say with certainty that it is koryu. I would not trust those that claim to be able to at all unless they have lived in Japan, speak Japanese and study several forms of Koryu. But even in that case, I have shown how anyone can be fooled.
 

Jonathan Randall

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It is not that easy.

Certainly there are certain things that pop out and tell us that an art is not what it claims. If you are holding the katana like a baseball bat, or leaping through the air with a jumping side kick while holding it, you are not doing Japanese kenjutsu- period. And then there are the many times people have picked up Chinese dao swords for their Japanese art and gotten laughed at on these boards.

But within the koryu, there is a huge variety and differences. If you look at the unarmed stuff from the Yagyu Shingan ryu vs the Takeuchi ryu or the sword from Kashima Shinto ryu with the sword from Maniwa Nen ryu you will find a wide range to fit in. And if someone is really good- they might be able to pull off some sort of fraud.

Take the case of the Kaze Arashi ryu. It is an art that claims to have originated in Japan with some practicioners still here. A few years ago, some of us in Japan tried to run down the training group in Japan and not only we were stonewalled, but some of the answers we were fed did not add up. But the movements were such that experts in the field such as Ellis Amdur and Meik Skoss were originally taken in and thought it was an authentic koryu that had fallen through the cracks.

Here is a link to them working with Meik Skoss at a demonstration with comments by Diane Skoss.

It would look like that their movements say that they are indeed koryu based on the opinions of experts. But look at the following thread and you will see that on further investigation that Amdur now believes that the art was created in America and the senior practicioners know it.

If these experts on Koryu could be deceived, then I do not think there is a snowball's chance in Hell that any of us could say with confidence that an art is koryu based on their taijutsu.

Lets face it, it is an established fact that Takamatsu was a silled practicioner in at least the Takagi ryu and the Kukishin ryu. With that type of background, how hard would it be to make up a similar system of movements? And then there is the fact that there were a hell of a lot of Koryu still alive when Takamatsu was a boy, and most of them died off like the dinosaurs since then. How hard would it be for him to have studied a few and then pass them off as arts with different names and histories. Even if he studied them for only a few months or years, he would still fall within the parameters you find in koryu.

So you really can't look at an art and say with certainty that it is koryu. I would not trust those that claim to be able to at all unless they have lived in Japan, speak Japanese and study several forms of Koryu. But even in that case, I have shown how anyone can be fooled.


As an objective bystander (not a practitioner of any of the X-Kan styles), that is my take on the situation as well. I also think some of the exaggerated (or even erroneous) claims of a number of former students of Dr. Hatsumi in the early years of the "Ninja Boom" unfairly set many Western experts of Japanese Koryu against ninjutsu from the beginning.

Of course, as the Original Poster well knows, this is one of the deadest horses on the Internet.
 

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