Nuki Soku Zan 抜 即 斬
„Immediate cut from the draw”
The foreword of Tokutomi Tasaburó sensei:
Speaking about the japanese martial arts (budó) and the ethical code of a samurai (bushidó), it is not a realtion between the lord and his vassal, but rather the connection between two people, that seems like they are bound with the rope, becoming one and achieving mutual growth.
Especially if we have decided to study budó, we are compelled to start studying bushidó as well. Nowadays we don´t live in a feudal class system anymore and the declaration of bushidó has changed as well, however trustworthiness, justice and such articles as the benefit of proving to be loyal towards one´s country and it´s people as a samurai have reamined unchanged.
From the World War II onwards the bushidó, that had been percieved seriously up until then, has been neglected and budó downgradingly steadily simplified into the fighting sports shape.
On the other hand it truly is extraordinary, that the protection of the budó cultural heritage together with the perception of the original bushidó is appealing to non-Japanese, that lean towards it. Fortunately, Nakagawa Kinji is one of the few budóka, that are aware of this. When we understand the Nuki soku zan principle, the study of budó becomes „perpetual study of basics from the dawn until dusk“ (statement of Miyamoto Musashi, from the Go rin no sho, translator´s note), which stimulates the swordsmansip practice and I am very glad that through this the part of the japanese tradition, bushidó, is spreading throughout the globe. In the sphere of techniques, a certain virtuosity makes appearance, the dignity manifests itself and the practice of budó overlaps with the spiritual one, and the need for acting on a moral basis rises. Which is a driving force for the growth on the civilisation and culture in the world.
Kaichó Tokutomi dójó: Tokutomi Tasaburó
Nuki Soku Zan 抜 即 斬
The foundations for practicing with the sword in a „Nuki soku zan“ method lie in a „Happó nuki“ (drawing the sword in eight directions) concept founded by the Morinaga Kiyoshi master. This Happó nuki has been created by assembling the most effective and practical techniques from the old iaijutsu schools to become the realistic method of the use of a sword. In those days Nakayama Hakudó (1873 – 1958) as well helped with the development of techniques.
The real essence of the martial art lies not in the easy method, but rather in the elegance and virtuosity, that the body incorporates in itself. Thought of the strategy (heihó) should not neglect the outer appearance. Important point is a certainty, with which we perform the cut and to express our resolution, the energy of the sword, while overcoming our enemy. This, in the war strategy jargon is often named „saki“ and is a very important condition for defeating the adversary. The real combat use of the sword is made by compilating several different doctrines, however in the relation with the Nuki soku zan method the aim is to simply cut our enemy, to overcome him, and by this our sword is becoming deadly. From the technical point of view the essence lies in the cutting method, from the mental one there is indispensability if developing the consciousness of throwing away the body („sutemi“). When the threat comes from a person, we cut that person, when it comes from the horse, we cut the horse, that is the intensity needed. By that we begin with the accumulation of deadly techniques, and later the transformation to the „life giving sword“ (katsujin no ken), passed on from the legendary emperor Jimmu, can be made. Without the practice of the „life taking sword“ (satsujin no ken) however, it is impossible to talk about the „life giving sword.“ For the realistic drill of the cutting the tameshigiri is necessary.
Stance (kamae), focuse of the stare (metsuke), body movement (tai sabaki), moving the enemy (kyaku sabaki), the approachement method (sekkin), maintaining the harmonic distance (ma no torikata), pulling back (ridatsu), concentration (zanshin), etc. All of this has its importance for the certainty of a hit, it is like „adorning the beauty with even greater beauty.“ Nuki soku zan is practicing the real use of sword, it also leads inevitably to the development of good manners. A practical method of the usage of the sword is a one making a clear disctinction between the life and death. Tens thousands of people are having their one and only lives granted by heavens and not to loose the idea of reverence for it is the teaching of bushidó. This is made by the humbleness of the heart, and especially the respect for others, which manifests itself in the form of courtesy.
Person practicing the Nuki soku zan
inevitably cultivates the self-control
The method of the character and of the technique are similar to two wheels of the same carriage and practice of budó helps to develop both. This method of character, in its most extreme form manifests itself as casting off the body (sutemi), which in some dójós is percieved shallowly and incompletely, as a mere part of the training pratice (shugyó). Through the usage of the Nuki soku zan method it is possible to take a glance into the pure feeling of a great technique (ówaza), by overcoming oneself. It is said that „between the glittering blades eager to kill there is hell, but if we throw away our body, the opportunity arises,“ as well as „no plan, no image“ (munen musó), or „to cut in two in one sweep“ (ittó ryódan). However we talk about the „sword of the warrior,“ it is also a sword of a (virtuous) ruler, therefore the ittó ryódan ówaza is within the Nuki soku zan percieved with the utmost respect, and as a base of techniques it is regarded as their core, „roots and branches.“ The true aim of practicing the realistic use of the sword is the cultivation of a strong body and spirit and shaping of character.
The moderation is based on not insisting on small things, while being aware of the importance of becoming a human being capable of recognizing the righteous as righteous, evil as evil and that the mistake is mistake, on practicing from the dawn until the dusk and with this goal in mind to work hard on becoming a strong and decent person – both during the ordinar times, as well as under the rare circumstances. To physically and spiritualy work for the public benefit without any stop and to continue the neverending self-cultivation throughout the practice.
Óshú bujutsu kóryú shidókai kaichó: Nakagawa Kinji