Living Like Samurai

On the way to Japan, I told Amir that by the end of this trip he will understand what it means to be Samuari. I have been very fortunate to have been taught many things by Kamioka-san. This includes the Japanese language as well as the culture. I lived with Kamioka-san for the first 6 months I was in Japan. I would stay there every other weekend (Friday, Saturday and Sunday). During this time, I was introduced to a more traditional way of life. I slept on a futon, eat traditional meals, and consistantly watched Japan News.

Although Amir did not speak any Japanese in the beginning of the trip, he was speaking in full sentences by the time we left. This is truly a unique experience, and I have been able to share it with three of my students so far, Danny Tartaglione, James Menephee, and now Amir Khan. I am very greatful to the Kamioka-san family for giving us these experiences. I believe that this is a vital part of traininig. It was said that the last task a ninja in training had to do, was to go to a different part of the country, and pick up a new dialect as well as a new trade. The idea was for that person to adapt to his or her new surroundings. Once this task was completed, one had truly become Ninja.

Kamioka-san’s garden looked quite nice under all the sunshine that we recieved. In this garden, is where I first learned how to draw and cut with a sword. Kamioka-san had me practice my taijutsu out here as well. The garden is not very big, so it teaches you proper distance. By having stayed with Kamioka-san, Amir understood more about how and why I teach the way I do. It was funny, because Kamioka-san taught Amir how to use chopsticks properly. This was quite interesting, because Amir was using too much power to hold and use the chopsticks. Kamioka-san told him that he was using too much power. Once Amir reduced the amount of power he was using, he was able to use the chopsticks easily. It was at this point that Amir realized more about what Hatsumi Sensei is teaching us. Like Soke has told us before, this is a Japanese art, and you must try to learn the Japanese culture and language in order to truly understand this art. We were very fortunate to have had these experiences with Kamioka-san.


Chris Carbonaro

Bujinkan Shihan

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