True Path of the Ninja is the first authoritative translation in English of the Shoninki – the famous 17th century ninja training manual. Antony Cummins and Yoshie Minami worked closely with Dr. Nakashima Atsumi, author of the most comprehensive modern Japanese version of the Shoninki, thus making this English translation the closest to the original scrolls. The information and insights found in this translation are invaluable for understanding the skills, techniques and mentality of the historical ninja. Whether it involved tips for surviving in the wild, advice on intelligence-gathering techniques, or methods for creating chaos in the enemy camp, the True Path of the Ninja unveils secrets long lost. Also included is the first written record of the oral tradition “Defense Against a Ninja” taught by Otake Risuke, the revered sensei of the legendary Katori Shinto Ryu school of swordsmanship. It reveals for the first time the traditional teachings on how the samurai can protect himself from the cunning wiles of a ninja.
• • • Antony Cummins is a world renowned ninja historian, whose works have included the translating of the most authentic ninja documents available to modern man. His background as an archaeologist and historian gives him a unique insight to the mysterious world of the ninja. A trained martial artist, he is the author of several books on ninja and martial arts, including: Shinobi Soldiers and To Stand on a Stone: 50 Fundamental Principles of Martial Arts. Yoshie Minami has a B.A. degree in Linguistics from the International Christian University and is a member of the Historical Ninjutsu Research Team. She currently lives in Saitama, Japan.
• • • • Foreword by Otake Risuke • Preface by Dr. Nakashima Atsumi
INTRODUCTION The Feel of the Translation • Problems with the Translation • Ninjutsu: The Martial Art • For Ninjutsu Practitioners • The ,Esoteric and the “Outlandish” • A Short Biography of Natori Sanjuro Masatake • The Kishu-ryu Ninjutsu School • Before You Read the Text
PART ONE THE PREFACE TO THE SHONINKI Summary of the Tradition • The Types of Shinobi • Understanding What is Required to Follow the True Path of the Shinobi
PART TWO THE SHONINKI OPENING CHAPTERS The Equipment and Outfits for Shinobi Activities • Walking Along Unfamiliar Mountain Paths • Walking at Night • Infiltrating a Forbidden Mansion • Learning from Foxes and Wolves • Learning from Cattle and Horses • Gathering Information at Shrines and Temples • Changing Your Appearance • Hints for Infiltrating an Enemy’ss Position • Learning from Waterfowl • Appropriate Times to “Creep In” • Lessons from the Four-legged Animals • Two-man Shinobi Teams • Three-man Shinobi Teams
PART THREE THE SHONINKI MIDDLE CHAPTERS How to Utilize the Environment • How to Get Over a High Place and Get in Through a Low Barrier • Changing Your Approach to the Shinobi Ways • Defending Yourself Against the Enemy • Charms and Secret Rituals That Protect You from Being Targeted by the Enemy’ss Agents • Sheltering Under Trees • The Art of Camouflage • How to Make People Tell You What They Think • Reading Someone’ss Character by His Face • The Three Areas of the Whole Body
PART FOUR THE SHONINKI FINAL CHAPTERS Secret Philosophies of the Ninja • How to Get Into Other People’ss Minds • How to Avoid Defeating Other People • Reading People’ss Personality • Knowing the Difference Between Reason and Cleverness • Controlling Your Mind and Managing Your Reason • Impromptu Ways of Speaking • The Way of Departing from Ninjutsu • Inscription • “Defense Against a Ninja” • Bibliography • About the Author