Samurai Sword (Katana 刀)
Samurai - Kanji
What do the above words in the title mean to you, what visions or pictures do they conjure up in your mind? Most people understand these words and have a good idea of what they mean or signify. For most, either term conjures up such attributes as: - Strength, Power, Honour, Loyalty, Obedience, Devotion & last but not least Deadliness etc. For me they mean a whole lot more. Sadly these days, the samurai has been left to crumble on the dusty shelves of history. Indeed, there are many great volumes of literature on the subject, but the ideals these ancient warriors lived for and by seem to be long gone and nothing but almost forgotten fantasies and legends. Not so……..!!
I would like to draw an analogy between karate and the student & the ancient Japanese Warrior (Samurai) and his infamous sword (katana). The sword is analogous to learning the art & skills of karate and the samurai is the student who is going to use those skills if need be in times of danger.
These days everyone knows it is illegal to carry weapons around the streets and you certainly can’t travel on an aeroplane with a Samurai Sword tucked in your belt……but the thing is, you can!!
Yes, you really can carry a deadly weapon around with you all the time, and the beauty is that it is very small and easy to conceal, better than that, it’s totally legal.
Hundreds of years ago when the first Samurai came onto the world scene, it would take years of hard & arduous training to earn the exalted name of samurai and join the ranks of the elite who were, once qualified, permitted to carry the two swords (the Katana & the Wakizashi - or short sword). The katana itself took months of hard effort, many men and highly specialised skill to make in the forges of Japan.
page last updated on Thursday 16 September 2010