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Our Country as a Martial Nation

by Onisaburo Deguchi

Aiki News #61 (May 1984)

The following article was prepared with the kind assistance of Scott Nichols.

Onisaburo Deguchi

Chairman Ueshiba, a man who fortunately has received holy technique from the gods and who is their instrument in the governing of Japan during this period of crisis of our divine nation, is back again at the headquarters and making it the main center of his activities. This is the first step toward the realization of a world as it was planned to be [by the gods] in the holy realms.

The founder of this nation, Kunitokotachi no Mikoto, was a god of both literary and martial arts (bun-bu). When he set our nation’s landmass in order he did so with the halberd (hoko). The gods who followed him, Susanoo-no-mikoto and then Okuni-nushi-no-mikoto, both controlled the land through the power of the “halberd of verbal persuasion” (iimuke-no-hoko) and so they were able to comfort the population and establish peace on earth.

I have heard that there are some people who, having been infected with western ideas, have criticized budo, but the sword is indispensable. Even Amida Nyorai, who [in Buddhism] symbolizes “Great Mercy and Compassion,” holds in one hand the tama (sphere ) while in the other he grasps the straight, razor-sharp, double-edged sword (ri-ken) of Amida which symbolizes the cutting away of worldly desires. The sword [that is, the martial element] should not be unsheathed indiscriminately, but when it is necessary it must be used.

The three Imperial regalia of Japan are the most precious and honorable treasures of the nation as the teachings passed down from the Imperial ancestors. The three are the sword, the comma-shaped jewel (ji), and the mirror. The meaning of the mirror is the perfect and pure teachings of the gods and so it is the great way (daido) which comes from the gods (Kannagara) . The jewel is the symbol of His Majesty’s own revered person, while the sword is bu.

Therefore, we find that if there are teachings, on the one hand, then by necessity, there is the sword on the other. When Mohammed opened the wilderness of the Arabian desert he carried the Koran in one hand and a sword in the other. During the reign of Emperor Sujin, General Shido was sent out from the court to encourage martial ardor (bu). So we see that Sojin Tenno took hold of both (philosophical) teachings and martial power in order to bring government to Japan. A religion that has only good teachings is like a cart with only one wheel. A cart with two wheels is the two-fold path of bun and bu (“Pen and sword”) .

It is for that reason that we have formed the Budosenyokai (Society for the Promotion of the Martial Arts) but such an organization should have been formed long ago, when Ueshiba Sensei was still in Ayabe around 1920. However, back in that period we were still bragging about having 100,000 sharpened bamboo spears. In that period of modern weapons, 100,000 or even 200,000 bamboo spears would actually be useless; even so, the government authorities were quite upset by our weapons, just as the old Taira warriors were thrown into consternation by the sound of the waterbirds [that revealed their hidden positions to their enemy, the Minamoto]. Back then, had we at Omotokyo had a Budo Senyokai to train us in martial endeavors, there is no telling how much ruckus we could have caused [during the “Omoto Incident” when the government tried to surpress the faith]. Now at last, after much hesitation on the part of the gods, our Budo Senyokai has finally been formed.

When Izanagi-no-mikoto first formed our nation he made Onokorojima. This island is said to have been formed by the congealing of the drops of mud from the tip of the halberd [which he used to stir up the sea] but this is not true. The story that the mud dripping from the weapon formed our country is a symbol meaning that martial virtues were encouraged. The actual land had been formed since the time of Otsuchi-kunitoko-tate-no-mikoto. However, before Izanagi-no-mikoto’s time, man and beast alike lived according to the “law of the jungle” and “the survival of the fittest”. Then he came and brought government to a world of uncertainty with a drop of the halberd (bu).

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