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An interesting essay that gives me some insight into what is going on internationally. When I began with Muso Shinden Ryu, my initial training was all based on the Omori Ryu arts, later I was introduced Hasegawa Eishin-ryu and later began exposure to Okuden and kumidachi. It was only at this point was I introduced to the Seitei gata as a separate entity meant to be an introduction to Iaido for those training in primarily in Kendo. I’ve treated just like some other sets of kata that we do that not considered truly core to MSR. So it’s always seemed a little weird when I heard of MSR groups starting with Seitei gata or that being the focus of testing. I follow what my teacher teaches who is following what his teacher taught. In this modern age, it’s not hard to view what others are doing of different lineages or different Ryu and I’ve always told students that what we do isn’t the only answer, it just fits our logic internal to our style. The idea that there is really “now two different trends in iai, one more traditional leaning towards the passing on of individual traditions and one with more modern leanings towards the creation and dissemination of world wide standards in the art.” is useful way to view it. In the global economy of ideas there isn’t really a right or wrong to this but I favor a the traditionalist view.

Acme Bugei

“Muso Madness”: A look at some of the debate surrounding koryu and modern iai through two of the art’s most popular ryuha.

By Rennis Buchner
Copyright © Rennis Buchner, 2009. Not to be used without permission

By this point it is probably beyond argument that Muso Jikiden Eishin-ryu and Muso Shinden-ryu are the overwhelming most practiced koryu iai ryuha both in Japan (with Eishin-ryu being the choice of Western Japan and Shinden-ryu being the choice of the Eastern half of the country) and

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