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~Past Event ~
2008 Information

The 9th Annual Aki Matsuri
September 6 & 7, 2008 at the Bellevue Community College Main Campus

This year's Aki Matsuri featured the Martial Arts of Japan. Our "Guest Artist from Japan Program" brought the 11th Headmaster of the Hyoho Niten Ichi-ryu, Iwami Toshio Harukatsu Sohke.

Hyoho Niten Ichi-ryu was founded by the famed Japanese swordsman, Miyamoto Musashi (1584-1645) about 400 years ago. Hyoho Niten Ichi-ryu is one of the most distinctive classic martial arts of Japan, and it can be translated as "the way of the martial arts; two heavens as one style."

There was one embu demonstration per day by Iwami-sensei and two (2) accompanying dojo members (Naoyuki Nagaoka and Thierry Philippe Comont).

In addition, a special 2 hour lecture "Reflection of Teachings and Life of Miyamoto Musashi" by Iwami Sohke was conducted on Saturday afternoon. Subjects matter were: a) - The Life & Works of Miyamoto Musashi, the founder of Hyoho Niten Ichi-ryu, b) Spirit and Philosophy of Miyamoto Musashi, c) Interpretation of "Gorin no sho (The Book of Five Rings") through understanding of Buddhist Sutras, and d) Introduction of Hyoho Niten Ichi-ryu (History & Discipline).

Profile of Iwami Toshio Harukatsu Sohke
Iwami Soke

"Copyright - B. de Hogues / Enfance de l'Art"
Iwami-san was born in Fukuoka-ken, Japan.

Began kenjutsu training under the tutelage of Imai Masayuki Nobukatsu Sohke, the Seito 10th Headmaster of Hyoho Niten Ichi-ryu. Hyoho Niten Ichi-ryu was founded by the famed Japanese swordsman, Miyamoto Musashi about 400 years ago.

Iwami-san established the Dokugyoan dojo at his residence in Kokura Minami-ku, Kitakyushu-shi, Fukuoka-ken, Japan.

Imai Masayuki Nobukatsu Sohke conferred the Menkyo Kaiden to Iwami-san.

Iwami-san acceded to the Seito 11th Sohke (Headmaster) of Hyoho Niten Ichi-ryu.

While currently working with the Kokura Minami Fire Department, Iwami Toshio Harukatsu Sohke conducts numerous Hyoho Niten Ichi-ryu seminars both in Japan and abroad. Through these efforts he has taught many students.

Further he devotes significant time to the introduction of Hyoho Niten Ichi-ryu by way of Embu demonstrations and lectures. Through these educational efforts, he strives to introduce the ancient Japanese Martial Arts (Kobudo), the teachings and real personal experiences of Miyamoto Musashi (1584-1645), and Musashi's philosophy and spirit as recorded in his masterpiece, "Gorin no sho (The Book of Five Rings)" written between 1643 and 1645.

* Harukatsu is Iwami Sohke's "martial artist's name."

Embu 1

Embu 2

"Copyright - B. de Hogues / Enfance de l'Art"

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Miyamoto Musashi (1584-1645)

Miyamoto Musashi was not only one of the most famous swordsmen of his time, but also an extraordinary skilled painter, sculptor, metallurgist, and philosopher.

When Musashi was thirteen, he fought his first duel and defeated his opponent. After that, he went from place to place and encountered martial artists from many different schools. He fought over 60 matches winning all of them. In 1612, he fought and defeated Sasaki Kojiro in the famous match of "Ganryu-jima no Tatakai (Duel)". This was a turning point in his life.

After this match, he continued to practice day and night, but mainly to understand the principles of his skill, not purely to win. He looked very deeply into the purpose of his practice and the very essence of his hyoho (strategy). It was this depth of study which brought him to develop his own kenjutsu school called "Hyoho Niten Ichi Ryu".

In 1641, Musashi wrote a work called the "Hyoho Sanju Go Kajo (Thirty-five articles on Swordsmanship)" for the Lord, Hosokawa Tadatoshi*. This work overlapped and formed the basis for the later "Gorin no sho (The Book of Five Rings)". In 1643 he retired to a cave named Reigando as a hermit to write "Gorin no sho". Dokugyodo (or Dokkodo - The way of Self-reliance) was his last writing completed in 1645 seven days before his death.

* Hosokawa Tadatoshi (December 21, 1586- April 26, 1641) was a Japanese daimyo of the early Edo period, who ruled the Kumamoto Domain. He was a patron of the martial artist Miyamoto Musashi.

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