|08-19-2012, 02:25 PM||#1|
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Bedford Falls
News article: A 63-year-old engineer is Japan's 'last ninja'
End of a tradition...?
"I think I'm called (the last ninja) as there is probably no other person who learned all the skills that were directly handed down from ninja masters over the last five centuries," he said.
There will be no 22nd head of the Ban clan because Kawakami has decided not to take on any more apprentices.
"Ninjas just don't fit in the modern day," he said.
|08-19-2012, 09:36 PM||#2|
Join Date: May 2009
To my knowledge, the last individual to have received full transmission in an espionage-centric ryuha (there are extant schools such as Tenshin Shoden Katori Shinto Ryu and Tatsumi Ryu with such teachings, but none of them are known as ninjutsu or ninpo nor are they exclusively schools of such things; these are modern terms associated with ninja fiction from the late Tokugawa era onward AFAIK) was Fujita Seiko, and I'm not even sure how solid that is.
We've been accused of unreasonable prejudice against the popular "ninjutsu"-derived arts. Simply put, it is our opinion that modern-day ninjutsu and ninjutsu-derived arts are not koryu bujutsu. They are not based on a continuous transmission of technique and culture. Koryu.com covers koryu bujutsu. That doesn't mean that arts we don't cover are not worthwhile. We just don't cover them. Given that this is my site, I think that is my perogative.
Let me say this again, since it seems some people don't understand. Koryu.com does not cover ninjutsu! The art and those derived from it do not fall into our definition of the koryu bujutsu. Period. If you want to define the koryu differently, that's fine. Just don't ask us to change our definition, which is based on considerable first-hand experience and decades of research in Japanese source material. Please do not trouble yourself to write us to try and convince us to change our minds. It will not work.
We have made every effort to be as low-key as possible on the issue of "Is ninjutsu koryu?" We do not stress or advertise our position. That's because we sincerely believe that if your training is working for you then it is none of our business. However, if you come to us and ask whether we consider ninjutsu or the Bujinkan-derived arts to be koryu--well, we can only provide our honest opinion.
Please, please, please don't waste your time or ours. We really are familiar with the material relating to this issue; unless you happen to be a Japanese scholar who delves into ancient makimono, you won't turn up something we haven't seen and considered. Again, just because we don't share the same opinion doesn't mean that we are not all doing useful and good training. Yoroshiku onegaishimasu. I really appreciate your consideration!
This is a statement from Diane Skoss of Koryu.com. She is one of the few people, no less English speaking people, to have studied classical Japanese martial arts and write about them as an academic. I believe, and someone do correct me if I am wrong, that among Japanese historians there is consensus that there is nothing extant which is legitimately a school of spook-ery, and that ninja are just something else resurrected by marketing post-mortem.