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The Inner Art of Karate: Cultivating the Budo Spirit in Your Practice Paperback – 14 Mar 2012
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About the Author
Kenji Tokitsu was born in Japan and began studying martial arts when he was a child. He has taught karate in Paris since 1971. In 1984 he founded the Shaolin-mon school, where he teaches a synthesis of the original combat arts of Japan and China. In 2001 he established the Tokitsuryu Academy to teach and promote his method. For more information, visit www.tokitsu.com. Tokitsu also holds doctorates in sociology and in Japanese language and civilization. He is the author of numerous books.
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
I'm so glad I did. The first couple chapters were only of passing interest for me, being about karate history and development, but after that he got into theory, and I was riveted. This book is about budo, how to observe and understand some of the more...touchy-feely...parts of any serious martial art: sensing an attack before it happens, understanding distancing between combatants, making timing really work, etc. It's far from a comprehensive guide, but was exactly what I needed to be put on the road to really understand other (often older and more esoteric) texts. It's given me a whole new pair of eyes.
It's made my Aikido better. It's made my swordwork better. I can only imagine what this book would do for a karateka.
The author makes a clear distinction between modern day karate training, which is concerned with karate as a sports activity, as compared to the original purpose of karate training as a form of Budo. On this point I agree 100% with the author's view of this subject. He relates these differences by numerous examples showing how the Japanese swords experts in the past thought of combat.
The book is organized into six sections. The first one covers, what is karate? The second one explains Budo and karate goshin-do, The third one deals with the dimension of physical technique, the fourth section explores the dimension of Maai and Hyoshi, The fifth section covers the dimension of Yomi and the final section explains the basic combat principles followed by five sword masters of Tokugawa period.
As someone who has been involved in the martial arts for more than fifty years, I was a little disappointed in this book because many of the terms and explanations seemed tedious and boring to me at times. Nevertheless, in conclusion, if you are interested in the deeper aspects of Budo as it applies to the martial arts you may want to read this book.
Rating: 4 Stars. Joseph J. Truncale (Author: Haiku Moments: How to read, write and enjoy haiku)
I purchased this book in high hopes that it could illuminate of of the poorly explained concepts in the world of martial arts but it has, unfortunately, fallen very far short of being what it promises to be. The main drawback is not the author's knowledge, which is very deep, but his ability to convey that through the text of this book in a clear and understandable manner. In short, the translation is HORRIBLE.
I have read many Japanese-to-English texts and this is by far the most obfuscated translation I have ever come across. The book uses far too many words (and bewildering sentence structure) to describe concepts that could be simply stated using plain language and 1/3 as many words.
I'll be updating this review once I finish the book. But considering how many times I have to reread a paragraph to understand it, this may be quite a wait.