The Path of Shugenja® VII (The Final Journey) held

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Fifty eight kilometres in 12 hours were walked by the participants in the seminar The Path of Shugenja, which was held yesterday.
On „The Final Journey“, 13 members from Bujinkan Macedonia and two guests were participating. Unfortunately, halfway of the predicted route, one of them had to quit because of health problems, caused by the great strain.

The seminar started at 08.00 hours, when after short preparations, the group directed herself to the slopes of Lipac. After hour of climbing, Beljakovski Monastery was reached, and then the participants continued south, to Pezovo. On the halfway to the village, one of the participants of the seminar started to experience health problems, after what shidoshi Dovezenski had to decrease the movement speed. With a turn to south-east, the group headed to the village Tatomir, where the frail one was sent by a car to Skopje. Because of the unplanned detour, a slight change was made to the plan, so instead of of the finishing point to be Skala, the group made a circle arc to the north walking around the west part of Sekulica. With the gradual decrease of elevation, the participants got down to the bed of River Kriva Reka in the village Shopsko Rudare. Moving to the west, through Konjuh, they entered the village Beljakovce. Five kilometres until the starting point, in honor of The Final Journey, the members of Bujinkan Macedonia did fifty push-ups with full gear on, and then walked the last kilometres. After reaching the starting point of the route, shidoshi Dovezenski announced this seven-year feat as closed.

The calculations that were made with the help of army maps and satellite navigation, showed that in 12 hours sharp, 58 kilometres were walked in hill, mountain and difficult to pass terrain.

Одржан Патот на Шугенџа® VII (Последното Патување)

Posted on Categories Почетна

Педесет и осум километри за 12 часа, изодеа учесниците на семинарот Патот на Шугенџа, што се одржа во текот на вчерашниот ден.
„Последното Патување“, се пријавија 13 членови на Буџинкан Македонија и
двајца гости од страна. За жал, на половина пат од предвидената рута,
едниот од нив поради појава на здраствени проблеми, предизвикани од
големиот напор, мораше да се откаже.  
Семинарот започна во
08.00 часот, кога по кратки подготовки, групата се упати кон падините на
Липац. По едночасовно искачување, се пристигна во Бељаковскиот
Манастир, а потоа учесниците се упатија во правец на југ, кон Пезово. На
половина пат до селото,  кај еден од учесниците на семинарот, почнаа да
се јавуваат здраствени проблеми, по што шидоши Довезенски мораше да го
забави темпото на движење. Со свртување кон југоисток, групата се упати
кон селото Татомир, каде што изнемоштениот беше испратен со автомобил во
Скопје. Поради непланираниот застој, дојде до мала измена на првичниот план, па наместо крајната точка да биде Скала, групата направи кружен лак кон север движејќи покрај западниот дел на Секулица. Со постепено намалување
на надморската висина, учесниците се спуштија кон коритото на Крива
река во селото Шопско Рударе. Движејќи се кон запад, преку Коњух, тие
навлегоа во селото Бељаковце. Пет километри пред стартната точка, во
чест на Последното Патување, членовите на Буџинкан Македонија направија
педесет склекови со полна опрема на себе, а потоа ги изодеа и последните
километри. По пристигнувањето на почетната точка од рутата, шидоши
Довезенски овој седумгодишен подвиг го прогласи за затворен.

направени со помош на воените карти и со помош на сателитската
навигација, покажаа дека за точно 12 часа, се изминаа 58 километри по
ридско-планински и тешко прооден терен


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is an old martial art that has until today remained covered with
mystery, therefore it is so little known even for the Japanese people.
The first written sources originate from year 520 AD. In medieval Japan,
in the times when it was divided among several commanders, often there
was a clash between their armies lead by the samurai warriors. For the
samurai it was a great honor to die in the battlefield because their
code said so. On the other hand, the code of the bushi (warriors) do
not apply for the ninja. They used to use special, unconventional way
of fight. For them, the only thing that mattered was how to fulfill the
task, to protect ones own family and to survive. That was their code.
would be most appropriate if we say that ninjutsu is a skill (martial
art) for survival and self-defense. But, we mustn’t think that ninjutsu
is applicable only in the times of war. On the contrary, its philosophy
is universal and functions regardless of the time and space.
teach us how to understand the Universe and how to establish a harmony
with the nature. It helps us to develop our mental and physical
potentials, to develop our own creativity, to enhance our
individuality, to increase the self-esteem and goodness, to deepen our
life and to learn to enjoy it more. In one word, to become tatsujin
(perfect person who is able to succeed in any segment of the life).
without honest and clean heart, without open and positive spirit, who
cannot recognize their mistakes, to regret for them, as well as those
who cannot deal with their ego, are unlikely to remain in this martial
art. Those people often take the wrong way.
in ninjutsu is cruel, but at the same time it is honest with us the
same way our life is. Through training we learn how to accept punches
of the rival at the same way we get punches from our destiny. But, we
learn how to attack back. This martial art teach us to accept pain and
suffering as a part of life and reality, not to bend over obstacles,
but on the contrary, every new problem to make us tougher. Every
trouble in our lives is for the reason. Solving and accepting the
troubles make us stronger and better. Only the weak give up and fall in
a self pity. 
Practicing nijutsu is an honor. Through training we understand the joy of life and the true values.
from the other popular Japanese martial arts, such as aikido, judo or
karate, that have become recreational or sport disciplines aiming to
achieve sport results or to recreate, ninjutsu helps us to survive in
the daily situations. The goal of this martial art is to teach us how
to defend our life with the least consequences for our body and spirit,
and with the large scale consequences for the enemy.
ninjutsu make us physically stronger, more prepared and more skillful.
At the same time, we develop sincerity, honesty, empathy and dignity.
But we have to admit it cannot be achieved easy and over a night. The
way that lead us to the goal is hard and thorny. Still, those who
succeed to go through it get the feeling of inner peace, self esteem,
perfect control over one’s body, positive attitude and joy towards
life. The biggest benefit is the strength that wouldn’t allow us to
fall during the hard times that are expecting us in future.
people think that these days a complex martial art such as ninjutsu is
unnecessary. But they all forget that nobody can predict the future. As
the great Chinese sage Tsun Tsu said
“In peace prepare for war, in war prepare for peace”. We cannot predict
if we sometimes should defend the lives of our children, our closest,
or ourselves. We may find in a situation where the skill and the
endurance will mean survival.
training in our dojo (training hall) is real. Every drop of sweat and
every bruise we get prepares us for the unpredictable situations we
will face in future.
is well more than receiving punches and strikes back. This primeval
martial art has an attitude towards life, it has a life-worth value.
Therefore no other martial art is similar to it. In ninjutsu there is
no competition between practitioners, nor a fights for points. Instead,
practitioners help each other and cooperate in a friendly atmosphere.
Ninjutsu has no a secret goal. It has a way how to get to know yourself
and to increase your abilities and potentials to the unbelievable
Ninjutsu is simply – a way of life.


Posted on Categories Нинџутсу

Нинџутсу е стара јапонска боречка вештина која до денешен ден останала покриена со превезот на мистеријата, така што таа е малку позната дури и за јапонскиот народ. Во средновековна Јапонија, во време кога таа била поделена меѓу десетина воени заповедници (даимојо-а), често доаѓало до судир меѓу нивните војски предводени од самурајските воини. За самураите било голема чест да се загине во време на војна, бидејќи така им налагал нивниот кодекс. Од друга страна, кодексот на буши (воините) не важел за нинџите. Тие употребувале посебен неконвенционален начин на борба. За нив единствено било важно како да се изврши задачата, да се заштити своето семејство и да се преживее. Тоа бил нивниот кодекс.

За нинџутсу најточно би било ако се каже дека е вештина за преживување и самоодбрана. Меѓутоа, не смееме да помислиме
дека нинџутсу има примена само во воени услови. Напротив, неговата филозофија е универзална и функционира во секое време и на секој простор.

Нинџутсу не учи како да го разбереме универзумот и
како да воспоставиме хармонија со природата. Ни помага да ги развиеме своите ментални и физички потенцијали, да ја развиеме сопствената креативност, да ја збогатиме својата индивидуалност, да ја зголемиме самодовербата и благородноста, да го оплемениме нашиот живот и да научиме повеќе да му се радуваме. Со еден збор, да станеме татсуџин (комплетна личност која е способна да успее на секое поле во животот).

Луѓето кои немат искрено и чисто срце, кои немаат
отворен и позитивен дух, кои не можат да ги согледаат своите грешки, да се покајаат за нив, како и тие што не можат да го отфрлат егото, не можат долго да опстанат во оваа вештина. Таквите луѓе најчесто тргнуваат по погрешен пат.

Тренингот во нинџутсу е суров, но истовремено и
искрен кон нас-исто како што е искрен самиот живот. Преку тренингот учиме како да ги примиме ударите од противникот, на ист начин како што ги примаме и од судбината. Но учиме и да возвратиме. Вештината не учи да ја прифатиме болката и страдањето како дел од животот и реалноста, да не потклекнеме пред препреките, туку напротив, со секој нов проблем повеќе да ојачаме. Секоја невоља што ќе се појави во нашиот живот има
своја причина. Решавајќи ги и прифаќајќи ги невољите ние стануваме се посилни и подобри. Само слабите се откажуваат и се препуштаат на самосожалување.

Вежбањето нинџутсу претставува чест. Преку тренингот ги разбираме животните радости и вистинските вредности.

За разлика од другите популарни јапонски вештини,
како што се аикидо, џудо или карате, кои денес се претворени во
рекреативни или спортски дисциплини и имаат за цел да постигнат
спортски резултати или да релаксираат, нинџутсу ни помага да преживееме во секојдневните животни ситуации. Целта на оваа борбена вештина е да не научи како да го одбраниме својот живот, со најмали последици за нашето тело и дух, а со што поголеми последици за противникот.

Вежбајќи нинџутсу стануваме физички поспремни, посилни и повешти, но истовремено ги развиваме искреноста, чесноста, сочуството и достоинството. Меѓутоа, мора да признаеме дека тоа не се постигнува лесно и преку ноќ. Совладувањето на патот кој не води до таа цел е тежок и е посипан со боцки. Но сепак, тие кои ќе успеат да го поминат, добиваат чуство на внатрешен мир, самодоверба, совршена контрола над сопственото тело, позитивен став и радост кон животот.
Најважна добивка е силата која не ни дозволува да се предадеме во
тешките моменти кои не очекуваат во иднина.

Многумина мислат дека во денешно време не ни е потребна толку сложена вештина како што е нинџутсу. Меѓутоа, сите тие
забораваат дека никој не може да ја предвиди иднината. Како што кажал големиот кинески мудрец Сун Цу: Во мир спремај се за војна, а во војна спремај се за мир. Не можеме да предвидиме дали некогаш ќе мораме да ги браниме животите на нашите деца и најблиски или себе си. Можеби некогаш ќе дојдеме во ситуација кога издржливоста и вештината ќе значат: преживување.

Тренингот во нашето доџо (место за вежбање) е реален. Секоја капка пот и модрица не подготвуваат за борба со непредвидливите ситуации кои не очекуваат во иднина.

Нинџутсу е многу повеќе од примање и задавање удари. Оваа древна вештина има став спрема животот, има животна вредност. Поради тоа, ниту една друга вештина не е слична на неа. Во нинџутсу нема натпревар меѓу вежбачите, ниту борба за поени. Наместо тоа, вежбачите си помагаат еден со друг и соработуваат во пријателска
атмосфера. Нинџутсу нема тајна цел, туку начин, како да се запознаете себе си и да ги зголемите своите можности и потенцијали до невозможни граници.

Нинџутсу е едноставно-начин на живот.

Interview with shidoshi Igor Dovezenski for “Nova Makedonija”

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– What are the benefits of knowing and practicing
martial arts?

First, the main benefit is to discover yourself
and your possibilities. This is the starting point. After we see all our
disadvantages, our next goal will be to improve ourselves. Martial arts are
more than just a combat. They offer philosophy of life that we use to fight
with our inner self. From the moment that we obtain victory over our ego, we
can be sure that we are going to be the winners in every fight. Physical defeat
does not imply defeat of the spirit – an unbreakable spirit is what the members
of our dojo tend to achieve.

– What is the type of people that these martial
arts are meant for, and can everyone be a ninja?

Of course not! This is a short and precise
answer. And why not? Because the ninja do not exist anymore. 🙂

The time of the ninja and samurai is long gone.
Today with the existence of legislature, no one can take the justice in their
hands or use weapons to fight injustice. The serious answer would be: everyone
can practice ninjutsu, but no one can become a ninja. We practice the
traditional martial arts with a goal to perfect ourselves in every field in our
lives. To become better people. To raise our moral values and help our homeland
the best we can if that is asked of us.

– How much the people in our country are
acquainted with these martial arts? (Or only from the movies we watch with
Jackie Chan, Jet Lee, The American Ninja,…)

This question isn’t a serious one and I will not
answer it. Asking a serious expert for martial arts such a question is the same
as to ask а historian: „Did they use firearms in the Hobbit age?“

– Do you teach what we see in the movies?


Not at all. What you see in the movies are
unfilled childhood fantasies of the directors and screenwriters. The training
is a serious process in which you invest a lot, and gain a little. But we are
happy with that „little“ too.

– What do you expect from these classes?


I do not expect nothing. Those who visit them
should be the ones who expect something.

– How pleased you are from your students


I am never satisfied with my performances. That
attribute of mine is always there when I evaluate my students. They can always
do better.

How old is your youngest „ninja“, and how old is the oldest in your


The youngest member is 5 years old, and the
oldest 48.

– Are children interested? And what motivates
them when they come to train?


Interest shown by children is lower. We practice
classical martial arts which were used for surviving the turbulent times from
the Japanese history. Although we try to present the training as a game, the
kids feel the need for frequent changes during the development process. It is
completely normal. Most of our members are adolescents and mature individuals
who search something more in life.

Myths, legends and fabricated stories inside the Bujinkan

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J wrote this text for the international on-line magazine Hanako who provide information to Bujinkan members in 67 different countries around the world. Text was publish in may 2010, volume 13, number 5.

Myths, legends and fabricated stories inside the Bujinkan

Even though the word „Myth“ is regularly used to
describe some sort of a „falsified truth“, when used in an academic approach,
isn’t a terminological equal to determining truth or falsehood, which are two
rather normal human categories.  There
are a lot of definitions for the purpose of explaining the word „myth“. In
ethnology, „myth“ is a form of explanation for the phenomenon of human genesis
and the world in it’s present state.

Still, through myth, one wishes to transmit a story
by which tradition will be raised to gain the height of a religious

Myths in the Bujinkan

During my meetings and conversations with many of
the Bujinkan instructors, often I’ve had the chance to hear the story of the
friendship between the founder of Judo, Jigoro Kano and the last ninja
Takamatsu Toshitsugu. The story always differed in some minor details,
depending on who is telling it, and sometimes it went as far as Toshitsugu and
Kano training together, because they lived in two neighboring cities and as a
consequence of those trainings Toshitsugu Takamatsu influenced heavily the
development of judo.

To make the story even more convincing, some would
say that something similar to this can be read on the world-famous on line encyclopedia – Wikipedia
(in the part about Takamatsu).

The best part of this myth comes at the end of this
story. Namely, when Jigoro Kano decided to popularize judo as a new martial
art, with the intention of proving it’s efficiency, he scheduled a contest
between his own students and the traditional jujutsu schools which still
existed at that time. Of course, Kano’s students won almost all of the duels,
but one of the students fighting for his dojo were sent by Takamatsu himself, who
using his Ninjutsu techniques, win his opponent with great ease. This way, Takamatsu was
able to help his friend.

Listening to these stories, while zealously studying
Japanese martial arts history, often I ask myself why to the instructors (and
other members of our organization) have the need of creating and spreading
these myths (read: lies), among the Bujinkan Dojo members?

First of all, it’s true that the birthplaces of
Takamatsu Toshitsugu and Jigoro Kano, aren’t far away from one another. But the
issue here is that Kano was born in 1860, while Takamatsu 1889. That is a
difference of full 29 years. Besides that, when Kano was 9, his family moved to
Tokyo, which is pretty far from Kobe (592km) and during the years he rarely
came to his city of birth (Mikage). Regarding Takamatsu’s influence over the
founding of Judo, it is enough to mention 
that Judo (the Kodokan) itself was found in 1882 (1884 officialy) – 7
full years before the birth of Takamatsu. It is correct however, that Kano
organized duels with Jujutsu fighters, but these were usually members of the
police Jujutsu teams. At this time, Takamatsu was still in his cradle, which
renders false the claim that his students, who would be born much later, would
be able to participate in these contests.

Of course, these facts can be obtained by anyone.
Every serious book on the subject of history and Japanese martial arts offer
plenty of information regarding this issue. But one could ask: Why are these
lies spread among the Bujinkan membership and do they think by that our
organization will become better or our art more efficient?

Certainly not, dear friends. The answer is rather
simple. By spreading these lies, the gain is short-lived and will only achieve
the admiration of the more light-minded students or beginners. But anyone who
dives a little deeper into the world of traditional martial arts, sooner or
later will discover every lie there is. By lying, we can only prove our
uncertainty of knowledge about our art and technique, while reducing the respect
for our organization, the Bujinkan Dojo.

Therefore, if we want respect, we, as instructors
who represent the Bujinkan in our countries, should sit down and get a healthy
amount of knowledge about the history of Japanese martial arts. We should stop
hiding our lack of knowledge behind the fantastic myths and legends, which can
be told with no end visible – about the nine schools, Takamatsu, Iga, Seiko
Fujita and so on.

Our knowledge alone, will assure the good
reputation of our soke Masaaki Hatsumi and our organization, which to outsiders
often looks as an ridiculous factory for megadan production and not as an
organization with the task and dedication to keep the nine schools of the Great
Master Moko-no-Tora from oblivion.

Toshitsugu Takamatsu was a well respected master
and warrior in his own time, and every fabrication of lies and myths will just
destroy needlessly the outstanding picture of him. Myths should be based on
facts, and facts are rather easy to prove, especially in Japan which is a
country with a well kept history.  Do not
hope that by connecting great names from the budo world we will make our art
better or worth more. On the contrary, by that we just „wash away“ it’s rich
historical meaning as Koryu Bujutsu.

Let us stop creating blind followers from our students by telling
them pretty and „wise“ words. Those, which follow you today, will as easily
follow someone with sweeter words and stories tomorrow. We do not need
followers. We need leaders who think with their own head and believe in the truth,
not the lies. This is the only way to raise and save the reputation of the

                                                                  Igor Dovezenski

                                        Dojo-cho of Bujinkan

Dictatorship? Lies. Deception. Where is the Bujinkan headed?

Posted on Categories Uncategorized

last few months, with a masochistic drive, characteristic only of the human
kind, we did some great damage to the Bujinkan Dojo. Without getting into the
goals of each of us, as individuals, I would like to ask: Where is the Bujinkan
headed and where is our responsibility to that which we grew up with, matured
with and got old with?

of becoming stronger as an organization, each year we lose outstanding members
and attract clowns who have only one need – self-advertisement. We became a
circus, a reality show, which the facebook community is eager to follow in
front of their computer’s monitors and mock our greed, malice and selfishness.

speak against dictatorship, we want democracy. And where is this democracy if
you don’t even think of asking the other side to say something in their defense?
Where is the democracy, if we allow to be blamed and sentenced before a trial
even begins, with one or two false witnesses, like in the worst communist
times? What democracy are we talking about, if someone just slanders you in
public over the internet, thus ruining your reputation – just because you
(maybe) did something wrong?

friends. We cannot have a strong organization without a strong leadership. In
our organizations, students that slander their teachers find more support than
the teachers themselves. It is only required for some dissatisfied member, who
visits your dojo maybe ten times a year, broke the rules of the Bujinkan and
because of some excuse left your dojo – to raise their voice and his story and
lies to be accepted by some other teacher in hopes of material gain through it.
Afterwards, the troublesome student will immediately fabricate a story of you
being a dictator and with the support of his new teacher, it will reach Japan in
a matter of seconds – as a result of which, you are found guilty by the
administration over there. Your years-long work to spread the art in your
country, your training venue earned by your own blood, your media appearances
with the goal of spreading the Japanese Budo culture, your trainings for the
police, military forces and other organizations, go down the drain in a second.
And all this, without even bothering to get the facts. All that just to say
that there isn’t a “dictator”, who runs his Dojo in an orderly fashion. Should
we encourage chaos?

are talking about bans from the teacher for his student to go to a seminar in
another country and train with a different instructor? I agree, that can be
called dictatorship. But does that mean that we, members of the Bujinkan, can
at any time train with Fumio Manaka (Jinenkan) or with Shoto Tanemura
(Genbukan)? When I asked about this, they answered that such thing isn’t
allowed. “Of course, I thought, they do know what’s good for me”. So, in that
case, it isn’t a matter of dictatorship, but our own good. And we should trust
our teachers. Of course, they do always know what’s good for us. But do we know
what’s good for our students?

friends, as a man who professionally works as an ethnologist and
anthropologist, also as a person who takes immense interest in the history of
the warrior arts of Japan, I can tell You that democracy isn’t a characteristic
of the Bujutsu, or one of a Koryu Dojo, for that matter. On the contrary, order,
hierarchy and the respect of the elders (by rang in this context) is exactly
the thing that makes us different from the modern Budo Arts. Do we intend to
destroy those relations? Do we want to turn the Bujinkan into Gendai Budo? Even
if we do, it’s too late for that. The Kodokan and the Aikikai are already a
synonym of healthy budo organizations. Therefore, we can keep our image only as
an organization which works toward keeping the traditions of the nine schools
that Dr. Hatsumi selflessly opened to us.

am convinced that Soke Hatsumi isn’t even acquainted with these bad events,
wars and this “out-talking” which takes place over the internet. But I deeply
believe that he would be very unhappy seeing his students “train” atemi no
tanren on their keyboards, slandering others. Where did this behavior bring us?
The great Shihans writing about everything that takes place during the day on
facebook. “Off to lunch”. “Off to sleep”. “Off to the store with my wife”.
“Making lunch”. “My child is very sick”. And even other, more intimate matters.
Perhaps it’s a question of addiction to facebook? That is easy to find out –
try not logging in to facebook for a month. If you succeed in that, it does
mean you aren’t addicted, and you can be considered a real ninja. In any other
case, it would be wise to sit and think about ourselves.  

most honestly believe and hope, that all of us together will make sure that
these kind of things don’t happen in the future. Every situation can be solved
in a simple manner. Someone was wrong about something? Through mail or phone,
make them know that. Tell them that directly, face to face, privately. And they
will change their behavior. If required, punish them. But don’t lynch them in
public. Do not ruin their reputation that they built for years. Do not allow
the slanderers in the Bujinkan, who often compete amongst themselves which of
them will agree more on a certain issue with George Ohashi, just to make
themselves “closer” to him, to gloat and destroy the image that the Bujinkan
has built.

is time to introduce order. Time to make a strong organization which will
support it’s instructors who worked hard for the decent representation of the
Japanese Budo culture in their countries. Time for the greed to go away. To
respect the training, instead of sitting in front of a monitor and writing lies
and slander on the internet. To understand that martial arts require loyalty
towards your teacher, loyalty towards your dojo, honest relations towards your
closest and your country. On this path, there is no place for those of weak
spirit and will, those that keep on complaining and have an excuse for anything
and everything. One who would walk the path of the warrior, should be pure of
heart, with no place for malice, envy or selfishness in it.    

 Ladies and gentlemen, I am just a small and
insignificant dojo cho, who comes from a small but very beautiful country. An
instructor who has never been to Japan. An instructor who will provoke the
anger of the slanderers, with a single cause in mind – to cease the animosity
in the Bujinkan. I have nothing special to brag about. And I do have a lot to
risk. But, no matter how this reflects on my carrier, the names of Hatsumi and
Bujinkan will forever be carved into my heart. Let those two names remain pure
and without dirt upon them. Please.


cho Bujinkan Macedonia

and anthropologist on the State University in Skopje, Macedonia

Interview with Igor Dovezenski for the “Dnevnik” Daily

Posted on Categories Uncategorized

this “crazy” world every girl, woman, has to know a way of self-defense
in order to be able to handle attackers at least. One of your girl
students told me that you are about to organize a course where part of
these skills will be taught. What are you going to offer at this course?

will offer a concept that is checked and efficient for hundreds of
years. At the course we wouldn’t teach only physical but mental
techniques of self-defense as well. It includes the preparation of the
mind for a crisis situation, when the woman’s integrity in any sense is
endangered.  Besides that, the course is designed to be applicable to
real situations such as defense from an attacker with or without
weapon, when the attacker attacks with arms or legs, with frontal or
attack from the back, when he places the victim on the ground, etc.
But, the most important is that the participants will learn how not to
involve in the situation to be attacked. This comes as a result of the
mind techniques.

Do the women who are not in good physical condition can use these skills, having in mind they have a slower body reactions?

that are taught in our dojo do not have anything in common with sports.
Our members do not train to earn medals at contests. The skills we
learn are designed to react on the situations when our life is in
danger. It means they can be used by old and young, slim and fat, no
limits for that. The people, with their weak will and big ego put
limits to themselves.

How much women here are interested for participation at this kind of courses?

would like to know the answer to this question as well. Having in mind
that this is a first course of this kind, I can not predict anything.
But, even if one woman signs for the course I would be happy to share
part of my knowledge. If I can help only one person to get the
knowledge that sometimes might be useful, the mission is accomplished.
On the other hand, I can tell you how much women are interested to be
part of our school, on the regular training sessions, and the answer is
that lately their number is increasing.

How the women who passes the course are brave to use the techniques?

is noting to do with bravery. Bravery cannot be taught. It is with us
from the birth, and is developed through the life and situations that
appear in it. Even those who are not brave will try to protect
themselves when their life is in danger, when the adrenalin raises.
This is the moment when the skills come on scene. But, as I said, it is
much more important to learn how not to involve in such a situation.

every martial art has its history and the place of origin, will you
tell us more about the women self-defence and its origin?

is no separate martial art that is designed especially for women. But
in some of the old Japanese martial arts, such as Togakure Ryu Ninpo,
there is one segment of it – Kunoichi Jutsu, which was taught by the
women warriors in the feudal Japan.
Besides the fact they should have get familiar with all the physical
techniques of the men, women warriors were asked to learn sciences like
psychology, philosophy and medicine, in order to be efficient in the
fight against their enemies. This is the place from where we, the
representatives of this martial art for Macedonia, get the techniques for the course.

Is it difficult to comprehends these techniques and skills, and what are they based on?

would not be honest if I say it is easy. Every success is based on a
lot of work and sweat, I should say. Members of our school understands
this martial art as a way of life, and therefore it is not difficult
for them to comprehend the techniques. When you involve a great amount
of love in what you do, there are no difficulties at all. For us, it is
usual to train four times a week and we enjoy it, and if somehow we
miss a training we start to feel a kind of “ill”. Techniques taught on
the course are based on fast and sudden reaction, deception, as well as
unexpected reactions from the victim.

What are the predispositions women should possess in order to be able to participate on the course?

only condition is to feel healthy. They should “arm” with positive
thoughts, to have a honest hearth and an open mind. No predispositions
are necessary.

Would it be any possibility for the interested people to join a course where they would get a deeper knowledge on these skills?

door of our school is constantly open for everybody who have a will to
learn more about the Japanese classic martial arts. The submission is
during the whole year.

Is there a need to fulfil some kind of submission form?

The form is fulfilled at the beginning of the course, when already in the school.

Is there a limit on how many people are allowed to join?

there is. The limit is set because of only one reason, and that would
be that all the participants in the course to get sufficient attention
from the teacher. The training in a smaller group is always more
efficient. But, if there are more that 20 women who would like to take
the course, we would be happy to organise one more course for them.

Who are the teachers on the course?

As a main Bujinkan Dojo instructor for Macedonia, I will lead the course. With additional help from my students Bojana Grunevska and Marko Opachich.

In case there are more interested than the limit allows, is there a possibility to repeat the course?

course. If there are many interested we would organise another one.
But, we plan an upper level as well, in which the use of everyday items
that can be found in a woman’s handbag, will be taught.

Interview with shihan Steffen Frohlich

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I made this interview with shihan Steffen Frohlich during his seminar in Macedonia (01/02.11.2008)
                                                                                      Igor Dovezenski

Igor Dovezenski: Mr. Frohlich, do you remember how you got infected with the so-called ninjutsu „virus“?
Steffen Frohlich:

When you are young the bodily aspect of martial arts fascinates you.
Bruce Lee made me start with karate in 1975 and I have spent much time
on various championships. I was at the same time searching for
backgrounds, so I visited France and Yugoslavia for many times to train with well – known teachers.
Albrecht Pflüger, a karate pioneer, I came across the foundations of
Budo and developed my interest in other martial arts. Starting from
Jujutsu in alliance with Yoga, than involving different meditative
forms, following Philippine stick fighting with J. Cui Brocka, finally
in Germany 1982 I have been faced with the almost unknown martial art
ninjutsu for the first time.
has been a stony path from the first contact with this mystic martial
art, until the first contact with the grandmaster. In 1983, a small
group of people who were fascinated of ninjutsu arose and everyone had
a different belief of how the training should be conceptualised and of
the essence of ninjutsu.
In France, there was Sylvain Guintard, a famous teacher at that time, who had a contact to Japan.
I own him a lot, including the introduction to spiritual teachers. He
has been a shugendo – priest and a first class sword master.
Together with him I met Soke Masaaki Hatsumi in 1987 in England at the first European Taikai. It was then when I was introduced to Soke.
This was the beginning of an absolute new life in every regard.

Igor Dovezenski: You are the founder and chairman of I.N.A.G.. What kind of organization we are talking about?
Steffen Frohlich:

This is easy to explain. At the beginning of the 80ies it was important
to form a syndicate. We called it Incorporated Ninjutsu Association
Germany, short INAG. This community effected many positive things. Many
interested people found a dojo through the INAG and many teachers the
needed training sites. Because of the strength of this community it was
possible to invite Soke two times to Germany
to the Taikai and to sell his magazine Sanmyaku. It would be inadequate
if I show off with more positive effects. Primarily, the future of
Bujinkan will show us the importance of a strong company in this
community. Lately, many dojo- and interested groups come together, just
as the INAG did with the open structure BUJINKAN DEUTSCHLAND. There is
no a formal community or any other akin – only Sokes Bujinkan in Japan is deciding, as long as a teacher teaches his way.
Many countries that didn’t work similar to this way are on the track to catch up.

Igor Dovezenski: In Germany, there is a relatively good collaboration among Bujinkan dojo-s. How did you achieve that?
Steffen Frohlich:

It is important to grow up together and learn from each other. So, we
have never missed an opportunity to talk about common interests while
we had meetings (Shidoshi Kai). Therefore, it was possible to arrange
two Taikai together with Soke in Frankfurt am Main, and in 2008, a
Taikai of all 10 Dan-s in Reutlingen.
Even when people got different ideas, they should never lose respect for each other – thats the secret!

Igor Dovezenski: What do you think about Soke Hatsumi’s “Buyu” concept?
Steffen Frohlich:
The life in Sokes real Bujinkan Budo is coined intuitive. A person
gets a possibility to bloom and is under development that comes
straight from the heart. Soke talks about a big family that should
break international borders and human bounds, and to live in peace with
each other. He teaches us that from the aspect of martial arts, it is
easy to gain positive energy. So, he founded a structure in our family
to realize that. His graduation system is beyond other martial arts
systems and also evaluates in a different manner. First the technique
feature counts, later more and more the mental features. He sees people
as individuals to whom he gives the possibility to become different,
fully developed ones. He is talking about a process of developing into
a wise person who rests in oneself and who brings tolerance,
comprehension, compassion and harmony for oneself and his environment.

Igor Dovezenski: This year theme is “no theme”. How do you perceive it?
Steffen Frohlich:

The taoist teaching tends to achieve comprehension and the conversion
to yin – yang, the differences and the relations to each other. Here we
need an open heart, and of course attendance – so it would be possible
for us to develop the needed Space – Spirit – Feeling. The differences
and their values taught us to understand Yu Ko – the cooperation,
finding and playing together with the dragon and tiger of our
personality – the understanding of our body and soul.
of the last years Densho and Senseis teaching, we became able to
understand how to open (KUKAN NO SUKI) and how to close (KUKAN NO TATE)
the mental door.
Sensei said that we trained that in the exterior block (OMOTE). This year we want to turn to the interior block.
study this there is no need for a Ryu as a theme, so said Sensei.  We
should deal freely and unbound with the basics and foundations, which
we need to work out and understand. Also, the teachers on their own
responsibility should teach the whole spectrum of Bujinkan.

Igor Dovezenski: According to you, what is a direction Bujinkan is moving to?
Steffen Frohlich:

I am a positive and optimistic person and that is the way I see the
upcoming education. It is important that the teachers talk to each
other. It is not that I live in my own dreamland so that I do not know
that this is not going to be easy. We have to learn that we need a lot
of tolerance and understanding.
are a normal family. The most important thing is a good workout with a
good teacher. For many years I am in profound contact with Soke. He
once said: If a real searching person meets a real giving other, then
paths will come together.
changed my life altogether.  When he is talking to me he wants
naturalness. We were talking in April about the big changes in the
world and the expecting consequences.
him it is important that people understand his teachings right. We
should teach true Budo and teach our students the real values. If the
so called family of the Bujinkan teaches values like tolerance, trust
and harmony, then his lifework was not in vain.

Interview with shihan Ed Martin Papa San

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I made this interview with shihan Ed Martin Papa San during his seminar in Macedonia (17/18.05.2008)
                                                                                    Igor Dovezenski

I. Dovezenski: In the Bujinkan world you are known as Papa-san. Can you
tell us how you got that nickname?

Ed Martin:
On my first trip to train in Japan
in 1988, I took my three daughters along to also train. In the first
class with Dr. Hatsumi he looked at me and my daughters and said
“Papa-san”. Well it stuck and Ive been called that in Japan ever since
and others have copied them.

I. Dovezenski: When did you start practicing ninjutsu and who was your first teacher?
Ed Martin: When my oldest daughter became 16 years old
and got her drivers license, I sought martial art training for them. I
never wanted them to be victims. We started in Shorin ryu karate under
Ken Serfass. That would
have been in 1982. I trained along with my daughters. After about a year
training in karate our instructor went to a ninjutsu seminar and brought
back what he had seen. It was so much better then what we were doing
that the whole school switched to ninjutsu. Then it was trying to get
training as that was not readily available. Even information was very
hard to come by. Learning by trial and error is very hard on ones body!

I. Dovezenski: Can you explain the difference between ninjutsu in the past and nowdays?
Ed Martin: In the early 80s it was almost impossible
to get good information. Today it is readily available and there are
both good written and
excellent video information if you are willing to seek it out. There are
also many qualified and excellent instructors now. When I started we
could not even find out what the “Kihon Happo” was or what techniques
were included in it. We know this Kihon Happo today as a major way to
train the basics.

I. Dovezenski: In some old martial art magazines where
there are photos of you, I can see that your kamai was very deep and
kihon. Today, such as Soke Hatsumi, with almost every technique, you
are in shizen no kamai. Is
this because of experience in the Bujinkan —- or some other reason?
Ed Martin: When we were first learning ninjutsu
stances were enlarged. This had two purposes in my opinion. One was to
give a degree of physical
conditioning which is common in most martial art training. Try standing
in a “horse stance” for 10 minutes and you will see what I mean.
The other reason was to teach us the movements we needed to learn, to
see something clearly you expand it and so understand it better. These
were ways of learning not doing. Today only those who didnt understand
still keep those expanded movements. Shizen is a normal posture, it
gives no information on your skills to a potential attacker. You NEVER 
want to give any information to your attacker, never give him a
“learning curve” on your skills. He makes his attack and you end it
immediately, he never gets another chance. The shizen no kamae allows
you the most options of movement with the least given away.

I. Dovezenski: You are in your eighth decade of your life and you are still
traveling and teaching around the world. Is this not hard on you physically  to do this?
Ed Martin: One of the most valuable lessons Dr Hatsumi
has taught us is “keep going”. If you stop moving soon you wont be
able to move. It is like
the old adage, “use it or lose it”. Sure some of the long flights are
tiring, especially those to Australia from the US, but one must always
know what is important to yourself. For me I want to see many more
people in this world with these skills as I see this art as a way to
make our world much more peaceful and courteous. Those who attack
others do not think they will be hurt. If pain comes from their actions
learn not to repeat those actions. How many of you touched a hot stove
when you were a child? Did you touch it again? You probably learned from
the first experience. If we can provide the appropriate experience for
the act we help a person to learn. The appropriate experience for
someone seeking to cause another pain is to feel that pain themselves.
That way they learn not to hurt another. The appropriate feedback must
be immediate, to delay it means the lesson is not learned. I want to
help make that change in our world and so I continue to do what I can.

I. Dovezenski: Where do you see the Bujinkan in the
future, can the next Soke be able to meet the challenges that are
facing him in the 21st century?
Ed Martin: First the future of the Bujinkan is up to all of us. If we work
together to help students learn. If we use our skills to aid in the
improvement of society, then that vision I hold for the potential of the
Bujinkan can happen — a better world. If we splinter because of stupid
egotistic attitudes it will never come close to its potential. About
the “next Soke”, we dont know even IF Dr Hatsumi will choose one, and
certainly not how that person will respond to the challenges that will
be faced. This we do know from the history of the Ninja, they were very
creative. The ninja found very creative answers to their problems. In
short adaptability was a central characteristic for the ninja. I would
expect any new Soke to be capable of adapting to whatever challenge
came his way. This adaptability is central to what we do. I expect to
see the Bujinkan skills to expand to a vast portion of our world
population and as a result a lot of the wrongs that now still
persist will be corrected by the people themselves.