What is Ninjutsu? Have you ever thought of that?To some, it’s a martial arts choice among martial arts choices. To others, it’s the martial art of the Ninja – these superhero, commando, super-warriors capable of taking on an army of “bad-guys,” single-handedly.But, if you’re going to master this “thing” called “Ninjutsu,” doesn’t it seem logical to first know and understand what that “thing” is? Otherwise, especially with something as deep as Ninjutsu, also known as “Ninpo” in it’s higher, philosophical, life-mastery form, you could end up wasting a lot of time, effort, and money – and still be no closer than you were when you started!This article explores the question that is hardly ever asked… “Is Ninjutsu a real martial art?” And, believe it or not……the answer comes straight from the Ninja’s philosophy – not the author’s opinion!It is also important to note that, regardless of the attempts of a group of instructors to force the Ninja martial art into a formal, “official” structure – a “right” way to do it…The fact remains that Ninjutsu is unlike any other martial art in existence. So much so that I personally don’t believe that it is a “true” martial art at all.Now THAT is a controversial statement. And here’s why I believe that to be true. But that belief is not based on empty opinion, or y own unique way of approaching it – it comes from three decades of exploring, studying, and coming to a direct, real world use and realization of what the ancient masters of the art and it’s philosophy and life-ways, passed down to us.In the realm of conventional martial arts – as opposed to “True Budo” – the real “martial or warrior ways” that were passed down to us from ancient masters – there are certain common factors that are simply outside of authentic Ninjutsu.Some of these factors include:1) Adherence to a set, predefined way of doing things. The presence of a “style” mentality.2) Generally, there is only one school or set of principles being taught. You can see this even in schools where the teacher has attempted to combine styles in an attempt to fill in the gaps of each other.3) A sport, competitive, or recreational focus, and…4) Almost entirely limited to the learning of and use of martial, combative, and self defense skillsTo be sure, there are many other commonalities among today’s conventional martial arts. But the point is that at least these elements run contrary to the focus and ideals of Ninjutsu. The art of Ninjutsu is not, and has never been limited to “fighting” and self defense. Does it have those elements? Absolutely.But, in the realm of the Ninja’s philosophy… The self defense and combat aspects were developed to protect the philosophical teachings – not the other way around.In fact, in today’s world of conventional and sport martial arts, the student learns or develops life qualities as a by-product of the martial training. Completely opposite the fact that the Ninja student learns ancient lessons and strategies for recreating his or her life to be in alignment with their life-purpose and Universal laws – and then the martial skills are there to protect that life from whatever might threaten it.In conventional martial arts systems, if a student wants personal development training, it has to be added on or he or she must seek it out elsewhere. In Ninjutsu, it is the personal development and life mastery teachings that give a purpose to the self defense skills!In Ninjutsu, the only purpose for the combat skills is for the protection and preservation of life! Not for rank, trophies, status, or the elevation and glorification of ego!Very, very different focus altogether. So, are you looking for a martial art where you can be a “tough-guy” – one where you can win trophies and earn a bunch of brightly colored belts… Or are you looking for something deeper, more significant – something that has stood the test of time and produced Warriors – not just “fighters?”
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