Recommended reading for the martial arts. This is my personal library list. I practice Okinawan Te or "Ryukyu Ti." My system is derived from two others, one being the main influence of Shorin-ryu and the second Goju-ryu. The branch under Shorin-ryu is Isshin-ryu as developed by Shimabuku Tatsuo Sensei.

I wanted to create a library reference blog where I can provide a listing of the books I have in my library, present and past (past in that some have been lost in transit over the years). I will provide a graphic, if available, a short description, if available, and the bibliography. When possible a link to Amazon will be provided.

"Read not to contradict and confute; nor to believe and take for granted; nor to find talk and discourse; but to weigh and consider..." - Francis Bacon

Reader's of this Blog

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

The Katas

Tokitsu, Kenji. "The Katas Meaning behind the Movements." Shambhala. Boston & London.

Review: There are many awesome materials out there on kata that are exemplary in their content and meaning. I have listed my favorites on this blog and my web site recommended reading list.

I applaud the works of:

DeMente, Boye Lafayette. "Kata: The Key to Understanding & Dealing with the Japanese." Tuttle. Vermont. 2003.

Kane, Lawrence A. and Wilder, Chris. "The Way of Kata: A Comprehensive Guide for Deciphering Martial Applications." YMAA. New York. 2005.

Wilder, Kris. "The Way of Sanchin Kata: The Application of Power." YMAA Publication. New York. 2007.

And, we must not forget the references to kata in the  many books listed here and elsewhere that promote the understanding of kata.

This book takes up the cultural basis of the martial art kata as it has meaning to budo. This also speaks to kata in light of both the art of the sword and the writings/teachings of Miyamoto Musashi as understood by Sensei Kenji Tokitsu.

His approach is different and from the expertise of a Japanese martial artists of note. It is highly recommended and can answer many of the questions toward the depth and breadth of kata practice. 

A must read, a must have and a must place it in your library!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

The Inner Art of Karate

Tokitsu, Kenji. "The Inner Art of Karate: Cultivating the Budo Spirit in Your Practice." Shambhala. Boston & London. 2012.

Review: This book is an outstanding choice to provide a different perspective toward the practice of karate. It also speaks to the implementation of budo from Japan into the Okinawan art of Karate. This one is an excellent addition to any karate or martial art library.

Tokitsu Sensei has far exceeded my expectations upon finding this fine book and taken the explanations often assumed by western practitioners and placed them directly within our grasp for us to assimilate and apply in karate goshin-do (budo oriented practice).

He extends meaning in terms and their implementations and applications in an easy westernized format that can and will change how martial artists perceive karate and other budo oriented martial arts. He even uses the sport/combat sport aspects to make his point valid and obvious to all those practitioners as well. 

This book stands tall among such books as the Book of Martial Power and it should be read immediately - get your copy today, click the title above in the Bibliography.

High recommendations to all karate practitioners!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Complete Book of Five Rings

Tokitsu, Kenji. "The Complete Book of Five Rings." Shambhala Publications. Boston. 2000.

Review: I have several translations from several translators on the Gorin no Sho but this one is a bit beyond those in context, content and understanding. I am in the process of reading it yet felt it a large contributor toward understanding budo, etc. and felt it was a library addition of note.

It is a book with a unique definition and historical time-line on the concept of "budo." A more modern term that speaks to the warrior and the way, etc. A very interesting viewpoint on this single term often used and abused in modern circles of martial arts.

This book has a section at the back in "notes" that discusses the difficulties in translations. It is worth the effort to read this section with diligence simply because the writing of kanji/kana is based from feudal times and influences the culture and beliefs of the Japanese which by direct and indirect influences either comes from or adds to the Okinawan's and Chinese cultures and beliefs. 

More to come .....