A Brief History
The Fighting Arts have been around since the beginning of time. Fighting has always been a human instinct which has remained with us throughout the times. As time went on it has been technically developed, systemized to form the present Martial Arts, which can be found practically in every culture. This is what happened to the indigenous Okinawan Life-protection Art known as “Te” (Ti or Di in Okinawan dialect) meaning Hand.
“Te” resembled Okinawan folklore dance and some of its content consisted of Atemi (striking), Tuite (grab hand), and Kyusho-jutsu (vital points art), as well as Nage (throwing).
The RyuKyu's Islands are a small chain of islands located between Japan and China. The largest and most famous of these islands is Okinawa. Because of their strategic location it was a trading center for China and other Asian country. During those times Okinawa had a good relationship with China and China influences their culture, as well as their Life-protection Art.
Karate was born when there indigenous Art of “Te” (hand) was infused with Chinese Martial Arts and other Asian Arts. The Chinese forms (kata) were integrated and modified and Karate was born.
Te became regionalized when it roughly divided into three distinct forms, Shuri-Te, Naha-Te and Tomari-Te. (These were towns located around Shuri Castle.) These weren't names of styles but rather references to distinguish differences in applications, kata and philosophies. It wasn't until the late 1800's to early 1900's that karate took official names to describe or to differentiate styles.
The Kanji or Chinese ideogram for “Kara” meaning China was used out of respect for the Chinese. So Kara-te meant China Hand.
After the Meiji Restoration, Okinawa was under the rule of Japan. The Chinese ideogram for “Kara” meaning China was changed to “Kara, Ku” meaning open/vastness.
Today Karate literally means "Open hand" which refers to the physical means of hand movement and physical characteristics of the hand; which, when combined together represent human nature. That is to say, that, karate should be a natural movement – for example, just as in walking. The natural movements in Karate are typical in the old ways of karate.
Karate is often misinterpreted as empty hand. This is wrong; it’s suggesting that there is no substance, or movement in the hand.
Today there are many styles of karate. These styles, although related, differ in philosophy, and interpretation of concepts. Karate is now divided into 3 categories: Modern, Traditional, and Classical.
At Budo Quest Martial Arts the emphasis is on Classical Karate, meaning uses actual fighting philosophy developed by the warrior class. Classical karate is real karate technique used to stop opponents in actual combat, not the controlled conditions of tournament play.
Historical Time Line
was 22 years old at the time.
Chojun Sensei. Toguchi Sensei is the founder of Shoreikan Goju-Ryu.
They all obtained their Dan grading from Miyazato Sensei. Miyazato Sensei is also a well respected Judo champion. Tada Seigo Sensei was born in Kyoto, Japan. One of Yamaguchi Sensei's senior students. Tada Sensei went on to form the Seigokan organization, which became the largest Goju-Ryu association in Japan.
The 1936 Meeting: Tou-di Becomes Karate
A pivotal event in the evolution of Karate happened on October 26, 1936 during a meeting of some of the most prominent Tou-di teachers at the time. In attendance at this meeting were Choshin Chibana, Shimpan Gusukuma, Chomo Hanashiro, Choki Motobu, Chotoku Kyan, Chojun Miyagi and Juhatsu Kyoda. In addition to these leaders in Tou-di being present there were also members from the prefectural police department, the Japanese military and the prefectural physical education board. During this meeting it was discussed that the term 'Tou-di' was not appropriate for Japanese mainland practitioners since the Chinese ideogram 'Tou', for '
Shinjo Masanobu, founder of Shobukan Goju-Ryu is born. Shinjo Sensei was the chief instructor of Toguchi Seikichi Sensei's Shoreikan Dojo. Higaonna Morio, founder of IOGKF is born on December 25th.
Higaonna Morio Sensei leaves Miyazato Eiichi Sensei and forms the International Okinawan Goju-Ryu Karate-Do Federation.
Soken Hohan dies.