Toyama Kanken – Cryptic

Toyama Kanken, Vancouver, Karate, KitsilanoSome early writings on Karate-do written in Japanese were cryptic. In fact, this is at times an understatement. Whether this had to do with the non-written tradition of Karatedo or the parochial nature of the Okinawan people is unclear. To give you an example of this, Toyama (Oyadomari) Kanken wrote the following from his “Encyclopedia of Karate-do”.

Secret technique begins from simple technique.

Simple technique ends in secret technique.

In the beginning there is no secret technique, in the end there is secret technique.

One must grasp and forge the intangible key.

So, is Toyama being cryptic or is he just holding up one corner of the table cloth and challenging you to lift up the other ends by yourself?