The Manuscript of Ichikawa Sosui

I received Grandmaster Ichikawa’s manuscripts over a period of time starting from the 1980’s. I was only aware of one document in English, that was the Mysteries of Martial Arts translated by Hiso Ono sensei Sept 19. 1992, authorised by Sosui Ichikawa who presented it to me.

This translated copy being the only one available to me during the 15 years, ignited my self determination and found myself deep in thought remembering all the teachings I had already received. I grew to see them in a new light, not just with my physical daily practice but creative vision, of the metaphysical, thinking more of what I had been taught, visualising Grand Master Ichikawa speaking to me as they were stuck in my head, from the first time I met him.

Visualising Grandmaster Ichikawa speaking with me about things he had said over the many years like The Mastership of Unconscious Thought!. I can remember him saying “Chris san you can be where you want to be if you wish to be, the day will come when you understand this” – This was spoken by Ichikawa Sosui during my first visit to Japan in 1977.

The other manuscripts I received were written in traditional Japanese or Chinese kanji as was the tradition of my teacher’s era. I was told that I had already received the teachings of what was written in them, at the time I felt no need to translate them and placed them in a dojo cupboard when I returned home.

When I left the UK all my dojo possessions were left in the care of William Stone, a trusted disciple and Bubishi recipient.

In 2020 I became aware that others were attempting to translate Ichikawa Sosui’s documents. Some of these people only had a tenuis link to my teacher.  I decided to get my manuscripts translated. The resulting documents has rekindled fond memories and lessons with my teacher and confirmed to me I have stayed on the right path. I would like to mention that since receiving the manuscripts in the 90’s much of what my teacher passed to me is not written and as with our school he was always developing and in search of new levels.

Grandmaster Ichikawa states: ‘I would change the world a bit with my own karate’

Grandmaster Ichikawa also stated that he believed that karate can not be mastered in one life time, it may take two.

I would like to thank:

Sensei Hisao Ono, 7th dan, officially authorized Bubishi recipient, a most loyal trusted disciple to the late Grand Master Ichikawa Sosui, secretary of the Sosuikan dojo I thank him for his support and kindness as well as his hard work in translating Ichikawa Sosui’s handwriting of both Japanese and Chinese characters and the most difficult task with regard to the chapter of the Vital points of the human body.

Also, a big thanks to:

Mrs Junko Westway who worked tirelessly translating these Manuscripts.

Mr Richard Stevens 6th dan BUBISHI recipient for his support making this possible.

Mr Graeme McConnell-Brown for his advice and support in helping achieve my goal.

Mr Michael Cowie for helping with the website design and consultation.

Mr Bill Stone for his consultation.

Upon reading the translated documents I was amazed to read the teachings I had received over the decades. The contents of the translated manuscripts were only part of the knowledge I had received from the late ’80s. Much of my teachers’ teachings were transmitted in the ultimate way by communion of mind-to-mind, but in no other way. He would say, I open my heart, you have permission to steal from me. Grandmaster Ichikawa Sosui would share the highest levels of his karate this way and no other way.

Below is the Secret Book of Karate written by Grandmaster Ichikawa Sosui.

This is split over several other papers, Koshudo, Mysteries of Martial Arts, Goroku and ‘Original Guideline of Ryu Kyu Kenpo Karate-do’

It is with great warmth and sincerity that I offer the Manuscript of the late Grandmaster Ichikawa Sosui – his gift to the world.

Chris Clifford

1 – The BubishiThe contents remain only for those who become recipients of the Bubishi.

2 – The Secret Book – This book contains Techniques, Tactics and understanding of Grand Master Ichikawa’s karate. Reference is made to Koshu-do though out his writings, but there is much more within.

3 – Guideline of Ryu Kyu Kenpo Karate Do – A history of Martial Arts.

4 – Mysteries of Martial Arts – Interesting thoughts and observations from previous Masters

5 – Ichikawa Dojo Secret Book – Which is featured in the first part of 1. The Secret Book – As part of and contained in the Secret book this cover has no link.

6 – Exercises and Warm ups – Traditional exercises and warm up. This is also contained in 1. The Secret Book. As part of and contained in the Secret book this cover has no link.

7 – Goroku

8 – Personal Letter to Master Clifford