MASAAKI HATSUMI SOKE

Hatsumi Masaaki was born on 2. december 1931. in the city of Noda-shi in Chiba ken district, Japan.

He started training martial arts with Kendo when he was 7, and later he trained Aikijutsu, Judo, Shito Ryu Karate do (Zen-Bei Butokukai), and he also learned Shinden Ryu Jujutsu with Yashiro Sensei, and also Shindo Tenshin Ryu and Asayama Ichiden Ryu with Ueno Takashi Sensei who also taught him Kobujutsu Juhappan (Ueno travelled to Noda just to teach Hatsumi), and through all he reached master degrees and high levels; he also did boxing, football and gymnastics. He finished drama arts and medical osteopathy on Meiji University in Tokyo. He continued studying oriental medicine and chyropractics, and later he run his chyropractics clinic in the town of Noda.

In 1957. Hatsumi was 26 when he met Sôke Toshitsugu Takamatsua, called “The Mongolian tiger”, the legendary teacher of Ninpo Taijutsu, who took him as his personal student. Every weekend during the time period of 15 years Hatsumi travelled for about 15 hours across the whole Honshu island to the town Kashiwabara, to learn from this supreme teacher. Hatsumi says that the training with Sôke Takamatsu was incredibile, and that he constantly had a feeling that he was “walking under the blade of the sword”. After passing the Sakki test Takamatsu Sôke gave Menkyo Kaiden (the master licence) for nine schools of warrior arts to Hatsumi. A year before he died (he died on 2. april 1972.) Takamatsu Sôke told to his student Hatsumi that he taught him everything he knew.

After 15 years of teaching he decided Hatsumi to be the next Sôke of Ninpo Budo Taijutsu (the heir of tradition and grandmaster of those nine schools).

Hatsumi Sôke founded a school in the honour of his teacher called “Bujinkan Dojo”, which in translation means: “The training place of The Divine warrior”, and today Bujinden Honbu Dojo (the main dojo) is placed in the city of Noda – shi in Chiba – ken district. Hatsumi Sôke travelled over 20 years all over the world couple of times a year to hold and teach on seminars called TaiKai. Now the trainings and seminars (Tai Kai and DaiKomyoSai) are held only in Japan.

For his work and teachings Dr. Masaaki Hatsumi recieved many acknowledgements and rewards from many army (US Marines, US Navy Seal’s, US Delta, SAS, EVA 21 air force Base – Spain, etc.), police (honourary member of Arizona and Texas Rangers, FBI, DEA, NSA, SRT, CIA, SWAT, Specwog,etc.) and government institutions (Pentagon, White House, etc.).

He is an honourary citizen of many cities (Los Angeles, Atlanta, Dublin, Jordan Valley, Burton Village, Telde).

He recieved acknowledgements from many country rulers and representatives; (decorated by the Spanish king Juan Carlos), the American presidents Ronald Reagan, Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, George Bush , Bill Clinton, English Prime ministers Margaret Thacher and John Major, Princ Charles, French president Francois Meitteranda, Dalaj Lama, Nelson Mendela, Australian Prime minster John Bannon and many other from all parts of the world.

On the 3. november 1961. he had a lecture about, and demonstrated Ninjutsu for the Japanese Emperor (Tenno) Akihito, where he introduced him to traditional Ninja weapons and technics of this warrior art.

In 1982. Hatsumi Sôke travelled out of Japan to present and teach Ninjutsu for the first time. After that, in 1986. he recieved the “Black Belt” magazine award for the best teacher.

In 1987. he held the first TaiKai seminar in Europe, London and later he regularly continued with TaiKai seminars all over the world: USA, England, Sweden, Israel, Spain, Germany, Australia, Luxemburg, Portugal, France, Argentina, New Zeland, Italy, South Africa, Norway, Holland.

In 1995. he was awarded the title Todo Hanshi (The Great master of the use of sword and the Way of the sword) from Nakazawa Toshi, The President of Zen Nippon Todo Renmei (The Japanese fencing Federation).

For his work he also recieved a great acknowledgement and blessing from the Pope John Paul II (as the only martial artist in the world) and a series of medals and acknowledgements from the Japanese Emperor and the Japanese government (Sekai Bunka Taisho, Shakai, Bunka Korosho, Kokusai Bunka Eiyosho).

He also participated as an advisor on few films with Ninja thematics, “Shinobi no mono” and “You only live twice” (James Bond movie), and as an actor in series “Suteki no mama” and “Jiraya” (where he plays a role of Yamaji Tetsuzana in 50 episodes).

Hatsumi Sôke is also a doctor of Osteopathy, and he also recieved honourary doctorate of natural sciences from the American University, honourary doctorate of The Institute for electronic research in The University of Washington, honourary doctorate of Manchester school of Osteopathy. He is also a Nihonga (Japanese style) painter, and he held exhibits in Ginza – Nagai galery.

 He is also a musician and a singer, and a writer (The President and Chairman of The International department of the Club of Japanese literary artists 1990-94.).

He has published dozens of books and over 50 video tapes on the theme of Ninpo Budo taijutsu – Ninjutsu.

Today, Masaaki Hatsumi Sôke is considered to be one of the best martial artists in the world, and the Japanese government considers him a National treasure, and has decorated him for his work and contribution on the areas of culture and warrior arts.

It’s a great honour and pleasure that Hatsumi Sôke is our teacher and a friend of Croatia.