Certain techniques described in this manual can be dangerous to practice or misuse. Before performing any of these exercises, it is advised that anyone intending to do so should have a complete physical examination by a competent physician. Persons with respiratory or heart problems, epilepsy, brain tumors SHOULD NOT practice these exercises. The author and the publisher assume no responsibility for the use or misuse of any of the information contained within this training manual.
The Koga Ninja have employed various mystical methods to channel and utilize the inner energies of the mind and body. Less than ten percent of one's inner potential is used by the average person. In extreme situations, however, even common, untrained people may accidentally tap these hidden reserves and perform amazing feats of strength, concentration and sheer force of will. The Ninja have developed systematic ways to invoke such abilities and more. This is not, as some claim, a religion or sorcery, but a proven approach to connecting oneself with the physical and psychic forces within.
Through years of training, discipline and practice, a Ninja can perform feats that, to the ignorant, seem superhuman. This can account for many of the supernatural legends about the Ninja being able to turn invisible, control the minds of others, and stun or kill with a touch, a shout, or even a look.
This instruction manual is designed to start a novice Ninja on the path to enlightenment. The Jumon is a term referring to the system of 81 cuts, or hand symbols (9x9), for complete enlightenment and mastery of oneself and all things. Many of these hand symbols have specialized uses, and must be taught by a Master Ninja. The Jumon hand symbols are referred to as cuts because they intersect mystical planes of force which emanate throughout the universe. The hand symbols cut through these planes of energy and tap into them. Thus the term cut will be used interchangeably with hand symbol. For example, the system of nine hand symbols described in Chapter Three is known as the "Kuji-kiri." This term, literally translated, means
"nine cuts." This training manual will introduce the Ninja to special breathing techniques, the five basic cuts of the Jumon levels of power: Earth, Water, Fire, Wind and Void, the nine cuts of the Kuji-kiri (the nine cuts), and the combined power of the Ju-jitsu power grid (all nine cuts of the Kuji-kiri combined with a tenth cut). It must be understood from the beginning that these skills, like the Silent Way itself, take a lifetime to master. A student devoted to Ninjitsu must practice channeling his inner forces every day. At first, progress will be slow and difficult. A true Ninja must exhibit diligence, patience and dedication. By the time significant results can be achieved, within an average period of about five years, they will seem as they truly are, real and possible. Things are only impossible to the ignorant, the foolish and the undisciplined. View something as impossible and it will be. Accept the reality of the possible and triumph. Mastering the art of the Silent Way takes a lifetime of dedication. Ninjitsu is a way of life.
Grandmaster Toshitora Yamashiro,
The Nine Shadows of the Koga Ninja
Hadashi padded softly through the high, wet grass, running quickly at a low crouch as only a Ninja could. He placed his feet at right angles to each other. In that way, the trackers would be confused about the direction in which he was moving. He kept to the darkest depths of the shadows which night afforded him. But, unfortunately, the clouds had passed more quickly than he had expected and a bright moon illuminated the hills.
The clumsy Ashigaru foot soldiers hunted him; Hadashi could hear them sweeping up the hills, the grasses whipping and lashing against their armor. He could see the moonlight gleaming on a multitude of spear points of the soldiers who held their spears low to the ground, poised to stab the spy they were trying to ferret out. Unlike the Samurai, the Ashigaru were loud, slow and stupid, but their numbers made up for a great part of their failings.
Fear touched the heart and mind of the young Ninja. He did not fear death; Ninja were trained beyond that, but he feared failing to complete his mission. On a routine spying mission, he had learned that the Chikamatsu Clan was planning a surprise attack on a neighboring house, one which was allied with and employed Hadashi's Ninja Clan. It was important that he not fail in getting the vital information back to his Chunin, Ninja-leader.
Concealing himself within a bush, Hadashi crouched down on one knee and paused to redirect his internal energies. First he remained still, focusing on his breathing, going from his normal neutral breathing to more rapid positive breathing. He inhaled and exhaled powerful, even breaths from his hara, the mystical center of his being. A sense of calm came over him. He placed his hands together in one of the Kuji-kiri, the nine cuts or symbolic hand foldings of the Ninja which gave them their extraordinary powers. He performed Zai, which supplies awareness and mastery over oneself and all things. Oxygen rich blood flooded through his veins, rising up through his body, and concentrating in the frontal lobe of his brain.
The Koga Ninja were attuned to and adept at controlling the psychochemical reactions in their minds and bodies. Through Zai,
Hadashi gained control not only over himself, but over the physical world as well. Masters of Ninjutsu could become completely invisible at will by channeling their chi through Zai. They became one with the world.
The Ashigaru were coming closer to Hadashi's position. He maintained his concentration. If he broke out into the open, he would be spotted instantly. Instead he remained perfectly still, maintaining his concentration and his focus of power through Zai. He knew that at times an enemy could sense the presence of their foe, just as when a person senses that he is being watched or when a hunter senses the presence of the hunted beast. But that was not possible with Zai; there would be no psychic presence to give a Ninja away. When a Ninja becomes one with the world, there is nothing to sense. He is both there and not there.
The foot soldiers were very close. They plodded along and stumbled over the terrain and each other, cursing and muttering. A spear darted into the bush, probing absently, a few breaths from Hadashi's face. The foliage of the bush parted and a tired face glanced in briefly and then disappeared.The Ashigaru moved on, continuing their fruitless search.
With this awareness attuned to the presence of all things to the elimination of his own, Hadashi waited for the soldiers to pass over the hill and down the other side.
Finally, the Ninja left his position and ran quietly, making a wide loop which carried him around the advancing troops. He was moving across open grasslands once more, but he had to take the chance. If he was spotted by any rear troops, he could try to make his escape to a concealed pit in the forest near the river.
Suddenly the air was filled with an odd humming sound. Instinctively, Hadashi dove and rolled away from where he had been. Long-shafted arrows with bulb-shaped arrowheads stuck into the ground where he had stood. They were propelled by powerful nine foot yari, Japanese longbows. Armor was useless against them. The longbows were even used to sink boats by shooting at the waterline with special arrows.
Crawling through the grass, weaving and rolling, Hadashi concentrated on reaching the forest. He could not hesitate. The Chikamatsu archers were reknowned for their skill and courage. Arrows hummed through the long grass, but the Ninja was almost to the trees. Suddenly a feeling like a hot iron spike pierced his left arm, pinning it to the earth. Hadashi winced, but he did not cry out. Immediately he was bleeding profusely, but he had to move. Rolling to his left, he twisted his wounded arm quickly and snapped the shaft of the arrow off. He came to his feet and raced into the trees. More arrows peppered the ground and sped after him into the forest, barely missing. Flaming signal arrows shot up into the sky. Trumpets sounded.
hey would be on his trail quickly. Soon the forest would be crawling with Ashigaru like soldier ants, but he had to do something about his bleeding arm. Not only was it weakening him, it was leaving a trail that his enemies could follow. Hadashi stopped and crouched down, pulling out the rest of the arrow. Fortunately, the arrowhead had passed through the forearm without hitting a major vein or artery, but the bleeding was still profuse. The bones were not shattered, but the muscles were torn. From a small jar in his pack, he covered both sides of the wound with a thick, tar like healing paste. The bleeding slowed. Next, he knitted his hands together in Sha, the Kuji-kiri symbol that invoked healing. He took control of his breathing, decreasing his breath and heart rate, and then he took control over the flow of blood in his body. He redirected his blood away from his wounded arm psychically, without having to use a tourniquet and risk amputation. The bleeding ceased altogether in a short while, the pain subsiding into numbness. Quickly he wrapped the injured forearm tightly with a dark bandage.
He could see the torches of the Ashigaru sweep down from the hills all around him. He was surrounded. If he was going to escape, he had to make it to the hiding pit, but first he had to throw the hunters off his trail. They would follow his blood.
As he ran through the trees, Hadashi came to the trail leading over the top of a hill and down to the river. Without hesitation, he picked up a large stone as he made for the river, he stopped and pulled out a bladder strapped to his waist with long cords which was filled with ox blood. With the cords, he tied the bladder securely to the stone. Using the knife at his belt, he poked a number of holes into the bladder and threw it down the trail. It rolled, splattering blood along the way, fell into the water and sank. By that time, the voices of the foot soldiers grew louder as the Ashigaru crashed through the forest.
Hadashi slipped through the woods, to the concealed pit under an overhanging tree. He pulled open the trapdoor and went into the dark hole, closing the concealed portal behind him. Immediately he sat down and placed his hands into the Chi symbol. Slowly he began to control his neutral breathing and felt the inner energy grow from his spiritual center. The tension and worry fled from him. His spleen and stomach relaxed. From the base of earth, he went through Sui, water, to strengthen the will, Ka, fire, to strengthen the heart and pump more energy to mind and body, Fu, wind, to clam the mind and relax the internal organs, and finally Ku, the void, to enter the state of mind/no mind.
Outside of the pit, Hadashi was aware of the soldiers' movements. They were swarming over the area. Feet tramped by the pit. A voice from one of the leaders rang out.
"He was hit with an arrow," the archers say. "Come on, you laggards. It will be our heads if he is not found. He must be close by."
Another voice spoke up excitedly. "Look, Captain. I have found blood on the trail."
"What?" the Captain said. "Quickly—a torch! Comb this area!" There was a pause and the sound of many running feet. "Yes, it is blood."
"It leads down to the river," another distant voice shouted.
"Curse this spy for his cleverness," the Captain said. "He may be far down stream by now. Search the river! Search both sides! Send runners to alert our forces at the border!"
Within minutes the Ashigaru were gone. Hadashi performed the Jumon power grid, the combined nine cuts of the Kuji-kiri with Juji, the final tenth cut. With his good right hand, he cut the air with vertical and horizontal strokes. With each one, he summoned the mystical power of the grid, speaking the name of each cut:
The grid seemed to appear before him in the air like lines of energy. He drew upon its interwoven power for the strength and wisdom to complete his mission. With Juji, the tenth and final cut, he dispersed the grid and its power, bringing the cycle full circle.
His left arm was numb still, but otherwise Hadashi felt strong and refreshed, ready to go on. He had to get back before morning. For the next four hours, the young Ninja ran through the forest, stopping only to listen and watch. The Ashigaru were still busy scouring the river.
But Hadashi knew that he would not be safe until he reached his village. The border guards would be alerted, extra sentries and warning posts would be set up along the boundary between the two clans. He still had to get past them.
As he neared the border, the Ninja stopped and performed Kai, to heighten his powers of awareness. He concentrated, breathing slow and evenly, attuning himself to the flow of the physical and psychic energy around him. He sensed danger, a living being nearby. Someone was very close. He crept forward, moving slowly and quietly, melting into the shadows. The clouds had rolled in, cutting off most of the moon, which made him feel a little better. The forest was almost completely dark. Hadashi suddenly felt the presence very close and stopped to look and listen.
Finally, someone coughed, very close by. Turning in that direction, he could barely make out the forms of two soldiers within a few feet of where he stood. They had been standing so still that Hadashi almost blundered into them.
The second man cursed at the one who had coughed. His voice sounded gruff, coarse, older. "Young fool. Tell the spy we are here why don't you," he whispered. "I hope it is your throat he cuts. A cough carries a long way in still air."
"Hah," the youth laughed, but his voice shook with nervousness. "We're wasting our time out here. The spy will not come this way. Didn't you hear? He has already escaped down the river. Yes, by now he is long gone from here, well paid and with drink and women as he should be." He shivered. "Damn this early morning chill."
"That is your fear, boy. It is because you are a coward that you feel the cold. A true warrior is warmed by the fire of his heart."
The youth spat. "Shut up, old man." Then he moved around the tree as the old soldier laughed softly. "I must urinate, old man. Stand guard. It may be your head that the Ninja cuts off and hands to you. It is said that they are spirits and can turn the mind against a person."
Hadashi waited to slip away. He had no wish to kill the sentries, but he studied them. The older man was a veteran soldier, hardened and crafty, but also scarred, slower and weaker. The young soldier was strong and quick, but inexperienced and trying with great difficulty to hide his growing fear. Hadashi learned this through Jin, which gave him power to sense the thoughts and emotions of others.
Then suddenly the young soldier tripped over a root. He groped in the darkness. Quickly Hadashi performed Retsu, giving him psychic command over time and space within six feet. If he moved, he would be seen, and even if he remained still—the young soldier would find him out at any moment. Through Retsu, the Ninja gave himself more time to prepare his telekinetic attack to use the young man's fear as a weapon. The young soldier seemed to move very slowly.
"What is it?" the old guard said. His voice trembled and he held his spear at the ready.
"Nothing," the young soldier laughed. "Hah, I fall down and you lose your wits." He began to get up. His hands were reaching for something to pull himself up on, but his was about to grab hold of the Ninja.
Hadashi leaned forward and screamed like a mad demon. The unexpected sound in itself stunned the young soldier, coupled with the psychic energy the Ninja channeled through it, causing the sentry to fall back in psychic shock. Hadashi had used Kiai-jitsu, the fighting shout of the Ninja. Grandmasters could kill with it by bursting blood vessels in the brain.
The old soldier cursed. "Damn you, you young fool. I nearly jumped out of my skin. Are you trying to scare me to death?" Silence was the only answer. "Boy?"
"Retsu!" Hadashi shouted as he charged the old warrior with his three foot jo staff, holding it like a sword. The soldier gave ground, instinctively deflecting the Ninja's blows to his upper left, upper right and middle left.
"Retsu!" Hadashi screamed even more wildly, and repeated the same attack sequence with no effect. "Retsu!" and again the sequence failed.
"Retsu," he shouted for a fourth time, channeling his inner energies into the jo stick. He attacked the upper left and right areas, but once again the soldier deflected his blows and instinctively moved to intercept the anticipated blow to the middle left. But Hadashi had used a form of hypnosis, part of Saiminjitsu—Ninja mind control. The old soldier had been conditioned to respond to the attack sequence through suggestion and habitation. At the last minute, Hadashi lunged in close and swung up with the butt of his jo, striking the guard first on the temple, and then delivering a smashing blow to the jaw. The old soldier fell, completely unconscious.
Hadashi turned away from the fallen border guards and knelt, executing Rin, invoking power, courage and wisdom. No force in the world could stop him.
Breathing is basic to life. Without breathing, life will cease after a very short time. The mind and body must be nourished by oxygen continually. With this in mind, a student of Ninjitsu should study the way people breathe. How do they breathe? How is their breathing affected by rest, exercise, excitement, age, or physical condition? Most people do not consider this or how it affects their health, their ability to function, indeed, their entire life.
Scientists have determined that all creatures have approximately the same number of breaths and heart beats during the course of their lifetime. Creatures such as mice, for example, have very rapid breath and heart rates. They also have a short lifespan. Tortoises, on the other hand, breathe slowly and have less rapid breath and heart rates. They can live for hundreds of years.
The Ninja have long understood the connection between breathing and life. If asked various questions on how to improve the quality of one's life, a Ninja Master could answer them in a number of ways:
1) To live better—breathe better.
2) To control oneself—control the breathing.
3) To be wise—breathe wisely.
4) To live long and well—breathe longer and more slowly.
5) To be strong—breathe stronger.
6) To be healthy—breathe healthily.
7) To be happy—breathe happily.
8) To have purpose—breathe your purpose.
9) Cease breathing, and cease living.
Why is breathing so important? Because along with other chemical nourishment, the electromagnetic and electrochemical processes of the mind and body run on the air a person breathes. A Ninja learns that the way he breathes can affect the psychochemical levels of the body. By keying in on and controlling these metabolic changes through breathing, awareness and concentration, a Ninja can tap the inner resources of the mind and body.
Very, very few people learn to do this effectively and consistently. The Ninja train constantly to gain total mastery over their minds and bodies through discipline, exercise and meditation. Finely attuned to and in control of their inner forces, the Ninja can call upon this internal power in times of need. Learning proper breathing is the first step in this process of enlightenment.
There are basically three types of breathing, just as there are, in Japanese, In, Yo and Zen (or as they are known in Chinese, Yin, Yang and Tao). These three types of breathing will be referred to as neutral, positive and negative breathing. All three exist on a continuum, a linear scale of reference with no end points, as demonstrated in Figure 1.1. They can also be seen in a sign wave (Figure 1.2), or even in Yo and In (Figure 1.3).
Using breathing to tap into one's inner forces can be dangerous, however. Misuse of certain Ninja breathing techniques can lead to coma or heart failure and death. They must be taken seriously and controlled at all times.
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