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The Twenty Precepts of Gichin Funakoshi: And other essays on the philosophy of Karate Do Paperback – 22 Sep 2004


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Product details

  • Paperback: 49 pages
  • Publisher: iUniverse (22 Sep 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0595321399
  • ISBN-13: 978-0595321391
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 0.4 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 953,863 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Sensei Vincent Cruz is an 8th-degree black belt in Shotokan Karate and the founder of the International San Ten Karate Association, based in Roswell, New Mexico. He has worn the black belt for 48 years.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Terry Tozer on 20 Feb 2007
Format: Paperback
Although less than half as thick as the hardcover version translated by John Teramoto, Mr Cruz's book contains a whole lot more. Starting with a simpler to read (IMHO) version of Master Funakoshi's "Twenty Guiding Principles of Karate", Mr Cruz then delves into the Philosophy of Karate-do; The Three Spiritual Philosophies (Mind Like the Moon/Still Water etc); The Philosophy of Training in Karate-do (another 17 precepts on karate-do) Mushin, Zanshin & Kime etc; The Go Jo - the five main precepts for Samurai Warriors and then finishes with a handful of short essays; one on the Grand Masters Philosophies (viz: Funakoshi).

An excellent book, I reiterate, better than the hardback version I mentioned above as you get more for your money and above all, it's easier to read and nicely laid out.

Every Shotokan Karate-ka (in fact all martial artists) ought to have one of these and read it often to learn the proper meaning of what karate/martial arts/budo is all about. It's not just all kicking, punching, grunting and "stuff". Some of the 20 "guiding principles" or "precepts" in the book have actually been acquired from earlier great martial art masters (e.g. Sokon Matsumura). That's not to say that Funakoshi copied them, even if he did, it was a wise decision to have them listed all in one place. A short book that can easily be devoured in a day, it's full of wisdom, no matter what martial art you study. Best read a few time to digest the intention behind each precept. Even if you're not into martial arts, there are many great principles here that when applied to everyday living will enhance your life and help you to be more successful and a happier person, regardless of your religion. Each short one sentence precept is then interpreted over the next page or two in simple but meaningful way.

Keep it beside your bedside to meditate from and absorb, as anyone following "The Way" ought to.
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By Shortie on 30 July 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Bought this for someone for his birthday as he heavily into karate and he was over the moon with it,would recommend book and supplier.
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By Mr P Bray on 6 Mar 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
this was one of the books I have been looking for for a very long time now I can sit down and enjoy. many thanks for the great service
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As the other reviewer commented, The Twenty Guiding Principles of Karate: The Spiritual Legacy of the Master is the competing product for this volume in english, and I'm afraid I could only recommend this one on a budget.

Personally I found the interpretation of the principles quite shallow, and thought many of the "other essays" were little more than conceptual definitions. That said, the volume is more accessible to the new or lay reader who is interested in rounding out their knowledge, and would serve as a competent companion to some of Funakoshi's own writings (or the tenets of one's Sensei).

Whilst I don't think Cruz adds anything new to the understanding of Funakoshi's philosophy (whereas Nakasone, who Teramoto translates, definitely does) his book is a perfectly competent work of pedagogy and will provide an accessable insight to anyone unfamiliar with the basic ideas.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 2 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Another Bible for ANY Martial Artist or follower of "The Way" 22 July 2007
By Terry Tozer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Although less than half as thick as the hardcover version translated by John Teramoto, Mr Cruz's book contains a whole lot more. Starting with a simpler to read (IMHO) version of Master Funakoshi's "Twenty Guiding Principles of Karate", Mr Cruz then delves into the Philosophy of Karate-do; The Three Spiritual Philosophies (Mind Like the Moon/Still Water etc); The Philosophy of Training in Karate-do (another 17 precepts on karate-do) Mushin, Zanshin & Kime etc; The Go Jo - the five main precepts for Samurai Warriors and then finishes with a handful of short essays; one on the Grand Masters Philosophies (viz: Funakoshi).

An excellent book, I reiterate, better than the hardback version I mentioned above as you get more for your money and above all, it's easier to read and nicely laid out.

Every Shotokan Karate-ka (in fact all martial artists) ought to have one of these and read it often to learn the proper meaning of what karate/martial arts/budo is all about. It's not just all kicking, punching, grunting and "stuff". Some of the 20 "guiding principles" or "precepts" in the book have actually been acquired from earlier great martial art masters (e.g. Sokon Matsumura). That's not to say that Funakoshi copied them, even if he did, it was a wise decision to have them listed all in one place. A short book that can easily be devoured in a day, it's full of wisdom, no matter what martial art you study. Best read a few time to digest the intention behind each precept. Even if you're not into martial arts, there are many great principles here that when applied to everyday living will enhance your life and help you to be more successful and a happier person, regardless of your religion. Each short one sentence precept is then interpreted over the next page or two in simple but meaningful way.

Keep it beside your bedside to meditate from and absorb, as anyone following "The Way" ought to.
Cruz' precepts 20 Mar 2010
By shotokita - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Sensei Cruz is one of the great masters of karate who has something to say. Using Funakoshi's precepts as a starting point, he takes the reader into meditations on a certain way of living, known to the warriors of the past, and hopefully through a door of enlightenment, into a world of contemplative ideals and moral values. This is a sort of warrior's code, yet often questioning the reasons for combat. In an ideal world, he seems to be saying, the greatest warriors are the ones who do not fight unless thoroughly provoked. For some hard core practitioners, Funakoshi's words have been misunderstood, transformed from the brutal samurai mentality of zen reality into a western philosopher's politically correct musings. Here, Cruz doesn't worry about that as the philosophical musings are his own, and they are from the point of view of a traditionalist committed to his art. In this book, Funakoshi and Cruz are of the same mind.
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