Bujinkan Greece Dojo - Ninpo Taijutsu
Mutō Dori 無刀捕





"Many people think that 'muto dori' is about the opponent wielding a sword while you have none, but this is not the case. Even if you have a sword, 'muto dori' starts with the development of the courage to face an opponent with the preparedness of not having a sword. This means if you don't thoroughly practice in taijutsu you will not obtain the knowledge of the refined skill of 'muto dori'. Therefore, you must first know the purpose of the path of the practice.


If you are unaware of this and proceed down the path of thinking that sword practice is only about cutting and thrusting, then there is a danger that you will go down the path of the evil sword. The sword harnesses a pure essence that is life-giving - one who cannot live the way of the sword saint will foolishly think that the sword is only a tool for cutting. Those who do this can never achieve enlightenment." –









Mutō Dori 無刀捕 (no sword capture). People hear that and they already have an idea in their head about dodging sword cuts.

Hatsumi Sensei makes reference to this strategy not just when he is unarmed facing a sword wielding attacker, but also during unarmed taijutsu, and while using all manner of weapons.

So forget the sword for a moment, and let's discover some hidden layers in Mutō Dori.

First, relying on any weapon or technique is a trap. If you become an expert, your mind will get stuck there. Use your weapons or techniques with the same mindset as mutō dori. This is a natural, everyday mind.

In avoiding a sword, if you think about avoiding, you will be cut. If you think about not avoiding, you get cut. You should think about nothing and when the sword cuts, naturally get out of the way. Wherever your mind stops is a trap.

Second, don't try to take your opponent's weapon or defeat him. Use 虚実 kyojitsu. If he responds to the 虚 kyo (illusion), give him the 術 jutsu (true form). Or if he has decided not to be fooled by your misdirection, and his mind stops there, determined not to be faked out, the kyo becomes real. It becomes the jitsu. You win by not attaching to either.

Third, Don't let your own weapon or technique be taken. Don't get cut. Makes sense at a basic level- of course you don't want to get cut. But this only occurs when you know the mind or intentions of the opponent.

Hatsumi Sensei says that he was told this by Takamatsu:

"In the instant that the opponent creates a Kiai, you need to avoid the attack."






This is not when you hear or notice the Kiai, but the instant it is created. You must be open and connected enough to the spirit of the opponent to recognize that moment when his mind or intent has shifted (or he has decided) to attack.

So to explain these three strategies in a slightly different way,
You must handle weapons freely, yours or his, no matter what kind of weapon and without being attached.
Understand and master the mindset of mutō dori. Not only in your own mind, but the opponent's mind also.
Be able to win without using a weapon.
Make a connection in the kukan without being cut (or cutting the opponent).


 Hatsumi Sensei quotes Zeami,

"秘すれば花  Hisureba Hana" (That which is hidden is beautiful)
and then Soke goes on to say,
"Those that live within kyojitsu and uncommon sense (秘常識 hijoshiki) possess a hidden sense."



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Seminars 2017 - 2018
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Ka Nin Doku Son.
 - Perseverance of mutual respect.
 - Continuous mutal respect.
 - The noble pursuit of tolerance throughout one's life.

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