Shorinji Kempo is one of Japanese modern Martial Arts, which is based on Zen Buddhism. Shorinji Kempo is a discipline for the training of the body and mind recognized as an education system, which includes its unique philosophy and technique. The practice places equal emphasis on training body and mind by practice of Shorinji Kempo techniques and Zen.
The Founder So Doshin established Shorinji Kempo in Japan in order to make good and brave persons and to change the world better by the power of achievement of these good and brave persons. The Founder stated, "The person, the person, the person, everything depends on a quality of the person." He declared importance of developing good personality and the making the world better through practicing Shorinji Kempo.
<6 Characters of Shorinji Kempo> 1. "Ken zen ichinyo" (Unity of Ken and Zen): appropriate way of training Ken refers to the fleshly body. Zen means mind and spirit. Our human bodies and minds are closely intertwined. Therefore, it is important to keep a balance between the physical training and the spiritual training when we practice Shorinji Kempo.
2. "Riki ai Funi" (Strength and love in harmony)" appropriate way of acting Riki refers to strength. Ai means love. In order to live in happiness, love, compassion, intellect, and strength are necessary. If someone is tortured and need help, you cannot do anything without strength to take action. Conversely, strength without love and compassion is nothing more than violence. It is necessary for us to have ability to evaluate the good and bad, knowledge of how to judge the situation and how to use ability, and the courage to face danger. "Justice without strength is powerless. Strength without justice is violence."
3. "Shushu koju" (Defense is primary, offense is subordinate): basic principles of applying techniques The techniques of Shorinji Kempo are constructed so they begin with defending against the attack, and after completely protecting oneself, counter attacking. Shorinji Kempo is based on the idea of a martial art used only to defend oneself against violence.
4. "Fusatsu katsujin" (Not to kill, but to awaken): appropriate purpose to apply techniques The physical techniques of Shorinji Kempo are not for killing or injuring people. They are for protecting yourself, helping other people, and improving people's lives. The techniques of Shorinji Kempo are effective in causing intense pain that makes people lose the will to fight. The techniques are done by attacking pressure points identified by the meridians of Oriental medicine. Therefore, Shorinji Kempo always aims at working for the good of people without killing or injuring anyone.
5. "Go ju ittai" (Hard and soft makes one whole): distinguish characteristics of the techniques Go refers to goho (hard techniques) such as punch, kicks, and blocks. Ju refers to juho (soft techniques) such as defense, release, and joint reverses. Although goho and juho works differently, they supplement and reinforce each other to become even more effective.
6. "Kumite shutai" (Paired practice is primary): distinguish characteristics of the training In Shorinji Kempo, training in pairs is the norm. This is for the purpose of gaining most skills that a person cannot learn alone. Also, it is not simply a matter of making oneself stronger, but of nurturing a cooperative spirit of partnering with each other and getting stronger together with friends and peers. By applying the techniques to each other and sharing the pain, we discover nuanced approaches to speed and force for our particular level. This is how two people training together lead to improvements in technique as well as improvement in character.
<Benefits> Shorinji Kempo is designed to benefit 3 areas: self-defense, developing body strength and energy, and cultivating mind and spirit. Through its practice,
For children, Shorinji Kempo helps growing up their body and mind. For teenager/youth, Shorinji Kempo develops their body strength and nurtures spirit greatly. For adults, Shorinji Kempo fosters their health and energy well. For women, Shorinji Kempo enhances their healthy diet excellently. For seniors, Shorinji Kempo maintains their good health and cultivates their energy well.
Shorinji Kempo is not competitive and it is enjoyable to practice the techniques. Hundreds of thousands of people enjoy practicing at school or district branches all over the world. At middle/high school, students can learn as one of the school subjects along school curriculums or as club activity. Almost all colleges in Japan have Shorinji Kempo clubs. Moreover, there are about 3000 branches and district clubs in Japan and all over the world. Not only young people, but also adults/seniors enjoy practicing Shorinji Kempo for maintaining good health and spirit.
<Rank Certification> The members will be able to earn an official certificate (Belt Ranks) issued in Japan after passing the belt degree examination. There are White, Yellow (only children), Green, Brown, and Black Belt.
<Practice all over the world> After the member registration is complete, an ID card will be issued from World Shorinji Kempo Organization (WSKO) in Japan. The members will be able to practice Shorinji Kempo at any WSKO practice locations in 33 countries with its Shorinji Kempo rank.
Shorinji Kempo's philosophy and techniques are globally registered as an intellectual property in each country where Shorinji Kempo is taught. They are inherited, generation to generation, by "Shorinji Kempo Shike" at Shorinji Kempo Headquarter in Kagawa-Prefecture, Japan. All the Masters all over the world must hold formal permission to teach Shorinji Kempo from the "Shorinji Kempo Shike." Therefore, all the branches and the Masters all over the world have strong relationship each other.