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Founder of Mujushin Kenjutsu

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1 Founder of Mujushin Kenjutsu
Sekiun Harigaya Founder of Mujushin Kenjutsu Arrowhead 2010

2 Who is Sekiun Harigaya? Founder of Mujushin Kenjutsu Short Biography
Mujushin kenjutsu = “Sword of Heavenly Reason” or “Sword of No Abiding Mind” Short Biography Born: 1593 (est.) in Harigaya, near modern Saitama Prefecture Died: 1662 at the age of 70 Pupil of Shinshinkage-ryu master Ogasawara Genshin, one of the foremost swordsman of his time Created Mujushin kenjutsu based on insights he gained through his study of zen when he was about fifty years old.

3 Sekiun as Ogasawara’s Student
Sekiun Harigaya was among Ogasawara’s two or three top students Endowed with great physical strength and skill and a fierce fighting spirit, he is said to have survived as many as fifty-two combat engagements As Japan became more peaceful in the Tokugawa era, he began becoming deeply introspective about the nature of his own sword skills.

4 Sekiun’s Attraction to Zen
Studied Zen under the Zen priest Kohaku After one period of intense introspection, he realized existing sword techniques used “beast-like spirit” through which the best that could be expected was to defeat one’s inferiors, be defeated by one’s superiors, and achieve mutual destruction or stalemate with one’s equals. In response, Sekiun began purging his swordsmanship of various movements and studying how to achieve victory naturally, based on the inherent capabilities and resources of all human beings

5 Sekiun’s Awakening Sekiun was able to let go of his attachment to the generally accepted principles of swordsmanship His discovery was the path to victory was in taking advantage of a person’s inner strengths The secret to this strength was in the calmness created by independence from worldly attachments.

6 Sekiun’s Sword Sekiun is said to have carried an unsharpened sword in his youth. Two explanations from Sekiun appear on his reasoning: To avoid a nick in the blade that might catch during a battle with multiple opponents Because of his bad temper, he feared rushing into a duel, and was more likely to injure an opponent with an unsharpened blade It is claimed at the time of his awakening he switched from a 2.5 shaku ( 30 inch) sword and 1.6 shaku wakizashi to carrying only a 1.3 shaku (15 inch) wakizashi

7 Mujushin Kenjutsu the art
To treat the art of sword as combat was a corruption of its purity. Mujushin Kenjutsu is not about conflict , but a fusion of breath, spirit and power. It was said that the three things one must forget completely in Mujushin Kenjutsu were his own body, his sword, and the existence of his adversary.

8 Post Awakening Sekiun engaged in contests with swordsmen from various other traditions, but when he applied his new insights none were able to match him. Sekiun discussed his discoveries with his own teacher Ogasawara and the two arranged a match, but Ogasawara was defeated in an instant

9 Ichiun Odagiri Sekiun’s successor and senior student was Ichiun Odagiri Ichiun Odagiri is considered by many as the greatest swordsman ever – better even than Musashi Sekiun and Odagiri are mentioned in Sensei Kim’s Classical Man and Don Warrener’s The 20th Century Samurai

10 Credits Sekiun Harigaya, by Yoshinori Kono, Aikido Journal #114, 1998

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