Shorinji Ryu Karatedo

Karatedo (空手道, "empty hand way") teaches traditional methods for stopping interpersonal violence. Emerging in Okinawa, karate was introduced to Japan in the early 20th century and has since spread around the world. Shorinji Ryu (少林寺流) is one of many schools that practice traditional karatedo. "Shorinji" pays homage to the Shaolin temple and the heritage of Chinese empty-hand martial arts as adapted and developed on Okinawa.

An Introduction to
Ogasawara-Ha Shorinji Ryu Karatedo
(Sakugawa Koshiki Shorinji Ryu Karatedo)

by Thomas Cauley
Zen Tohoku Karatedo Kempo Kumiai
Hanshi 8th Dan Karatedo


As the Chief Instructor, International Division, for Sakugawa Koshiki (Orthodox) Shorinji Ryu Karatedo, I am happy to write an introduction to this web site.

The following work has been prepared by authority of the All Northern Japan Karatedo Kempo Teachers Guild and is published by its direction.

It contains taitaikyo (rules of etiquette) dictated by the Ogasawara family in Japan. Dojo information has been kept to the basic schools. For the sake of conformity, kata have not been listed. However, our system does perform the classical and universal Japanese karatedo kata.

This information is not intended for the world at large, but I have felt at liberty to make, from all accessible sources, a compendium of the morals and dogma of this Martial Way.

The teachings of Sakugawa Koshiki Shorinji Ryu Karatedo are not sacramental in so far as they go beyond the realm of morality into other domains of thought and truth.

Nothing excites man's curiosity so much as a mystery -- concealing things which he desires to know -- and nothing so much increases curiosity as obstacles that interpose to prevent him from indulging in the gratification of desires.

Karatedo masters often conceal the highest truths under the veil of allegory, the better to excite the student's curiosity and cause him to investigate. Impiety is beyond those of profound knowledge.

Therefore, karatedo is a system of morality, veiled in allegory and illustrated by symbols. It is based on mathematics, geomancy, and a philosophical search for truth.

Sakugawa Koshiki Shorinji Ryu Karatedo is truly a miraculous art.

Thomas Cauley