Last year, we studied Kihon Happo as theme of the year at Bujinkan Dojo improving our foundation and discovering many ways to apply not only玉虎流骨指術(Gyokko Ryu Koshijutsu) principles, but many Bumon (martial gate) and Shumon (spiritual gate) insights.
During the year of the Divine Dragon it will be practiced Taijutsu & Ken (剣,Japanese sword or blade) considering to burn away (沸, futsu, simmering or boiling) the bad part of the Self.
Swords are very connected with the human being history and evolution. Also, in Japan history the Ken was very important. Profound spiritual, emotional, and physiological experiences can be achieved through the Ken practices.
Training with Bokken or Bokuto (wooden swords) are very important to learn how to use the日本刀(nihonto, Japanese sword). Our body and mind need time to develop correctly, that is the natural way. In advanced training, swords can be used to understand the feeling of Ken during the drawing, cutting, and technique execution, for example.
Years ago, I drew fast the sword that a student just achieved (just for teaching purposes) and the same student shared with me the scaring feeling he felt when he was watching it. Those feelings affect the nervous system and can change the balance or the structure of the opponent immediately, for instance. It can be practiced and realized. Even so it is a kind of Ateki (striking the spirit) applied principle. Practice it only with authorized instructor that knows what he/she is doing. Sometimes authorized instructors neither have Ken technical skills.
Ken practices make deeply changes on you.
Furthermore, there are many other principles that will be practiced during the year following the way of Grandmaster Masaaki Hatsumi. More news is coming soon.
Happy New Year!