Bible Of Karate Bubishi Paperback – Nov 15 1995
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Top Customer Reviews
It contains no detailed explanation of technique but the section on the history and philosophy alone would make buying this book more than worth it's price. Those practicing Goju-ryu, Isshin-ryu, or Kyokushinkai varieties of Karate-do will find the origins of Kata, such as Sanchin and Seisan, given here most interesting. If technique is what you're looking for then get The Essence of Okinawan Karate-do by Shoshin Nagamine, ISBN 0-8048-2110-0, along with this book and you won't go wrong.
The Bible of Karate: Bubishi contains the descriptions of Chinese medicine, vital point striking, and strategy that informed the techniques of the Okinawan Masters. In and of themselves these explanations are inadequate introductions to these subjects. But that together as a book, that it became a volume treasured by the Okinawan Masters is of immense importance in that it give us helpful clues to the subjects these Karate-ka concerned themselves with and which they felt to be of vital importance to the advancement of their technique.
If what you are interested in is more specifically the history of Okinawan Karate-do and Kobudo get this book along with Patrick McCarthy's two volume Ancient Okinawan Martial Arts: Koryu Uchinadi; ISBN 0-8048-2093-7 volume one, ISBN 0-8048-3147-5 volume two.
It goes further than most karate history texts, including a good set of references about where the author found some of his information.
This, along with "Unante" by John Sells is the most read karate book in my library.
As for the actual Bubishi translation, I have it on good authority that it is an excellent translation from people who can read the original Japanese translation from which this is taken.
I personally didn't find the Bubishi sections on fighting and grappling particularly useful, but they do serve for good historical perspective.
Some very useful sections from the book include a glossary of terms with their kanji equivalents, something that I've found very useful for translating lists of people's names, names of kata etc...
The quality of the books is excellent, with very crisp, sharp photos liberally distributed through the text and an excellent index.
I do feel that this should probably rank high on most people's list of books to buy, especially if you are starting out and are interested in karate history.
What I came away with was, judging by the scope of knowlege the Bubushi covers, the martial arts practitioner of the past was a well rounded individual in the truest sense. Science, medicine, anatomy and philosophy as well as the martial techniques were all a part of the makeup of the martial artist.
There are too many limitations to make the Bubishi a modern martial arts bible. Among others, there are really NO complete training guidelines, the medicine/treatments are incomplete, and the lethal striking points are unexplained (i.e. WHERE to strike may be explicitly documented, but HOW to strike and with what technique, and how hard is not addressed).
As a book (hopefully one of many) the student of martial arts would study to understand the roots of their art, I would say it is a good read. As an instructional tome I would be quite wary. The author points out the limitations of his reasearch. He is aware of the shortcomings of the final product and he cautions the reader appropriately. But he has given us a fascinating view of the past, cobbled together and distorted as it is.
So beware. This book is like being the last one in line at a game of telephone. We hear what has been passed on by the previous person, but do not really know if it is a complete and accurate interpretation of the original. This is not the fault of the author, it is just what is....
Most recent customer reviews
Normaly I keep my mouth shut about martial Art stuff because its so political and you always get into that conversation "What rank are you? What have you studied? Read morePublished on Nov. 23 2003 by phil
This is a very interesting and informative volume. The history, while a little too concise, is a good introduction to the bubishi itself. A recommended read for all.Published on Aug. 15 2001 by jnak00
The historical review of Mr. McCarthy is excellent. This book was only available for the disciples of the great Masters in the early days of Karate and now is seriously presented... Read morePublished on Feb. 3 2000 by Gonzalo Velasco C.
I really liked this book. Mr McCarthy has did all his english speaking brothers a big favor. All that needs to be said is that Mr. Chogun Miyagi endorses the Bubishi. And Mr. Read morePublished on Oct. 11 1999
Probably the best book ever on the early history and evolution of modern karate. A must have for everyone who really wants to know from where this art truly comes from. Read morePublished on March 2 1999
This is an interesting book, but one should always be aware that generally only those who like the book review it, hence the preponderance of high ratings. Mr. Read morePublished on Dec 30 1998
This book is truly a great piece of work! I have trained Karate for 13 years and this book keeps on amazing me every time I opens it. Read morePublished on Sept. 14 1998 by email@example.com
This I pick as the foremost book in the Martial Arts at the present. Covering Healing as well as vital combative information. Read morePublished on March 24 1998