The Karate/Kung Fu Connection: Bubishi

Just arrived, TWO books: the premier translation of the martial-world famous Bubishi by Patrick McCarthy; AND more stock on the gorgeous hardcover edition of The General Tian Wubeizhi: The Bubishi in Chinese Martial Arts. The convergence of these two–the translation (Bubishi) and the commentary (General Tian’s Wubeizhi)–mirror the revelations contained in these two texts concerning the special creation of Karate (and Kenpo), and the often-neglected Chinese part in that. This is the story of Okinawan martial arts such as Naha Te, Okinawa Te, Shorin Ryu and others:  how they developed, and how they were influenced martially, medically and morally by the importation of this so-called “Bible of Karate.”

bubishi and wubeizhiThe creators of this 300 year old book are anonymous, the compilations diverse, with each copy differing from all others. And yet, the text boasts many secrets from the Chinese original, such as specific information on Dim Mak and herbs for violent injury.  We are able to read this story of translation and an expansion of its principles to fit most Okinawan fighting styles. In the sister book (General Tian) we have a new, in-depth hardbound collector’s edition with a major essay on the hidden influences of Chinese Kung Fu, medicine, ancestor worship, White Crane practice, and much more, along with a never-seen painted series of ancient warriors executing techniques and two-man routines.

Read about the weird circumstances that brought these two books to Plum.

5 Responses to “The Karate/Kung Fu Connection: Bubishi”

  1. Jeff says:

    The illustration is the leg trap from the kata Kusanku.

  2. Both Books are “MUST” Reads. Mind,Body and Soul.

  3. GC says:

    …Funakoshi extracts bits from the Bubishi in his notes in “Kyohan”, but his students didn’t absorb it. He speaks of “changing hand” and knowing when and how to change a yin hand to a yang hand. In other words, kakie, or Okinawan following/sticking hands and arms…

  4. Jeff says:

    Thanks for linking to Gordon’s notes. Motubo is an interesting character, to say the least. He believed that Naihanchi kata is all you need to know to become a proficient fighter, and it is a strange kata when viewed in isolation. But there is an interesting quote from Motubo – “Twisting to the left or right from the Naifuanchin (old name) stance will give you the stance used in a real confrontation. Twisting ones way of thinking about Naifuanchin left and right, the various meanings in each movement of the kata will also become clear.”

    I would also suggest opening the fists.

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