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Tamiya Ryu Iaijutsu
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Message from the Head Instructor

After a very long absence from being able to update this section of the USTRI website, it is wonderful to have the time once again to spend writing this column, as well as The Reflecting Pool, and share my thoughts with all of you.

Due to a variety of circumstances, both work and family related, I was not able to devote myself to those various responsibilities that revolve around USTRI for quite some time. During that time, I passed the mantle to my very capable Board of Directors to run things until I was able to return. Now, however, I am fully retired and have ample time to get back to writing these columns as well as instructing our Deshi at the Honbu Dojo and Macomb County Branch. It is my great hope that, as time goes by, nothing further will impede me from my renewed involvement with USTRI and I will be able to do this for quite some time.

Perhaps one of the most rewarding and important aspects of my rejuvenated involvement with USTRI was being able to host our Soke, Tsumaki Kazuo Genwa, and his Assistant, Endo Tsuyako Gentei, this summer free from the situations that affected my relationship with USTRI and its members. During their visit, we spoke at length about the past few years and why I had to step back from my duties due to job-related stress, the deaths of my wife’s parents within 3 months of each other and personal health issues. Both Sensei assured me that this was by no means a problem for them and that my course of action was the right one given the gravity of the situations. Of course, they were overjoyed about my return to my duties and encouraged me to be involved as much as possible if the circumstances permit. Perhaps this is one reason why our relationship is as strong as it is and I regard them as my Older Brother and Older Sister.

So, to all of you who check our website, whether on a regular basis or just from time to time, you can expect new material in both the Message from the Head Instructor and Reflecting Pool columns on a more consistent basis from now on. I appreciate your interest in our organization’s activities and invite you to contact us if you are in the area to visit a class to observe what we do to keep this most valuable Intangible Cultural Asset alive and well in the USA!

Reading List

  • Living the Japanese Arts & Ways - H.E. Davey
  • In the Dojo - Dave Lowry
  • Hagakure - Yamamoto Tsunetomo
  • A Book of Five Rings (Go Rin no Sho) - Miyamoto Musashi
  • Bushido: The Warrior's Code - Nitobe Inazo
  • Japanese Swordsmanship - Warner & Draeger
  • The 47 Ronin Story - John Allyn
  • The Unfettered Mind - Takuan Soho
  • Secrets of the Samurai - Ratti & Westbrook
  • Legends of the Samurai - Sato Hiroaki
  • The Art of War - Sun Tzu