Goju Ryu is a close quarter fighting style.
Goju Ryu is characterized by its equal emphasis on Go (Hard) and Ju (Soft) techniques.
What is Karate?
The Japanese Kara means empty and te means hand. Therefore, karate translates as ‘empty hand’, the art of self defense without a weapon.
Through Sei Jun Kan you will learn a dynamic and powerful martial art. You will learn how, through correct breathing, coordination of your own body and concentration, tremendous power can be achieved. You will gain mastery over your body which will help you in self defense situations in your everyday life.
However, karate is much more than just the physical aspect. It is a complete discipline involving kokoro, the heart or spirit, and karate the physical body. Through the training of the body, we can discipline the mind and temper the spirit. The most important purpose of karate is to develop balance within ourselves so that we may express our true nature and become better human beings.
There are many students of karate, all which can trace their origins back to the island of Okinawa, Japan. However, originally there existed only three styles, each of which was named after the city in which is evolved. These are: Tomari-te, Shuri-te and Naha-te. The Tomari-te and Shuri-te styles were unified to form one school known as Shorin Ryu while Naha-te remained to its true form and became known as Goju Ryu.
The Meaning of Goju Ryu
According to oriental philosophy, to achieve harmony and order in the world,
everything must express a balanced nature. So there is night and day, fire and water and so on.The founder of our style, Grandmaster Chojun Miyagi chose the name Goju Ryu based on precepts from the Chinese martial arts. Go means hard or resilient; Ju means soft or yielding. Therefore Goju Ryu translates as the hard-soft school. This refers specifically to both the technical characteristics of our style and to its underlying philosophy.
For the kids
Karate teaches us strength, courage and self-control.
We become strong by training both our minds and our bodies. If we are respectful to our parents and pay attention to our teachers, our minds will grow and become strong. We become courageous by being kind to other people and respecting one another’s differences. We can also become more courageous by admitting our mistakes – even when we are afraid to do so.
True warriors or ‘karate-ka’ never allow themselves to be provoked into violence. We must always try our very best to walk away from a fight. By keeping our karate training for ourselves, we learn self-control.
Chojun Miyagi Shihan, 1888 - 1953, Goju Ryu Founder
Chojun Miyagi was born on 25th April 1888 in Okinawa. At the age of five he became the heir to the Miyagi family. His training in karate began at the age of eleven under Ryuko Aragaki Sensei who practiced and taught Tomari-Te. When he was fourteen his teacher introduced him to Higaonna Kanryo Sensei. Chojun Sensei trained with Kanryo Sensei from 1902 until October 1916, when Kanryo Sensei passed away.
During this time he was one of the few people who could withstand the severe training given by Kanryo Sensei. After the death of his teacher, Chojun Sensei continued with his own development including trips to China and research into physiology.
Chojun Sensei was instrumental in registering Karate at the Butokukai in Japan. He developed the Junbi-undo we practice today, and introduced the basic kata Gekisai Dai Ichi and Dai Ni. He also developed Tensho and a revised version of Sanchin. In addition to his personal training and development of Naha-te, Chojun Sensei spent a great deal of his time promoting the art. In 1921, he performed a demonstration of Naha-te in Okinawa for the visiting Prince Hirohito, Emperor of Japan, and in 1925 for
Prince Chichibu. Chojun Sensei had already envisioned the development of Naha-te not only in Japan but also around the world. It became increasingly important to organize and unify Okinawan karate as a cultural treasure to be passed on to future generations. In 1926, Chojun Sensei established the Karate Research Club in Wakas-Cho. Four instructors, Chojun Sensei, Hanashiro, Motobu and Mabuni, taught alternately some preliminary exercises and supplemental exercises. Afterwards, Chojun Sensei gave talks to the students about mankind, daily life, and the samurai code of ethics in order to improve their moral development as well. In 1927, Jigoro Kano Sensei, founder of Judo, saw a demonstration of a kata by Chojun Sensei and was impressed by the advanced technique and sophistication of Naha-te. Kano Sensei´s influence allowed Chojun Sensei to perform Okinawan karate at leading Japanese Budo tournaments sponsored by the government. In 1930, Chojun Sensei performed at the Butoku-kai Tournament and then later at the Sainei Budo Tournament in 1932.
As its exposure increased, many became interested in Chojun Sensei´s style of martial arts. One of his senior students, Jinan Shinzato Sensei, gave a performance of kata at a Japanese martial arts tournament. Afterwards, a master asked the name of his school. Shinzato Sensei had no answer for him, and upon his return to Okinawa he told Chojun Sensei about his encounter. In order to promote his art as well as cooperate with other schools of Japanese martial arts, Chojun Sensei decided it was necessary to name his martial art. It became known as Goju Ryu Karate, meaning "hard and soft" taken from the precepts of traditional Chinese Kempo. He was the firstamong different schools of karate to name his art and in 1933 his art of Goju Ryu was formally registered at the Butoku-kai, Japanese Martial Arts Association. Chojun Sensei travelled extensively, spreading Goju Ryu to mainland Japan and as far afield as Hawaii, after a local Hawaiian newspaper company invited him to introduce and promote karate in Hawaii in 1934. This is where he got the idea for the Kongo Ken which was taken from a Hawaiin wrestling tool. Two years later Chojun Sensei spent two months in Shanghai, China, for further study of Chinese martial arts. In 1937, he was awarded a commendation by the Butoku-kai for his kata. Chojun Sensei continued to develop Goju Ryu by analyzing and employing scientific methods of exercise in his research. His work found many practical applications and it is no surprise to learn that many of his students were in the police force. At this point the Second World War interceded, and the aftermath led to a prolonged period of severe hardship in Okinawa. Not surprisingly, the few students who survived the conflict could no longer train. Of those that lost their lives during the war, was Chojun Sensei´s top student Shinzato Jin´an, who was to have succeeded him. As normal life returned again to Okinawa in the aftermath of the war, Chojun Sensei
Began teaching again in his garden dojo. Realising that he had so much knowledge to pass on, Chojun Sensei began grooming a new and promising young student called Anichi Miyagi (no relation) to succeed him. They trained on a one to one basis similar to the method he was trained by Kanryo Sensei. Sadly Chojun Sensei passed away on 8th October 1953. One hopes he appreciated that he had succeeded in sowing the seed that would not only preserve his life time´s work to Goju Ryu karate, but see it expand into a global martial art.
This picture of buddha is a shrine that is placed no lower than your knees. Normally placed on windows and such. Each pose of buddha represents some meaning. In this case:
|Signifies grace and internal beauty.
|Right hand raised, facing outward, left hand dangles along left side of body.
|Standing with right foot forward, as if stepping on to right foot.