Practising karate

The oldest Teacher of the Kobujutsu de Okinawa was it Matsu Higa Peichin (1640-1720) as had few disciples, Peichin Takahara (1683-1762), Matsu Higa (Son) (1663-1738) among others.

Takahara, Peichin was born in the village of Akata Cho in Southern Shuri on the island of Okinawa in the year of 1683. He was of the upper class in Okinawan feudal society. One would then assume that he would be well educated as well as travelled.

Pechin means “senior”, honorary title of the feudales cuts of Japan. Very little are known for this teacher. It is known that he was Buddhist monk of the Shaolin Temple, expert in martial arts. He was known as an astronomer and mapmaker. His maps of Okinawa and the Ryukyu Islands were used in 1797 in Japan’s plans to prevent further European intrusions into the region. The Ryukyus were looked upon as the first lines of defence from the south.

Takahara Peichin was a general practioner. His philosophy has been passed on through the lineage of such as Sakugawa, Matsumura, Itosu, Funakoshi and many others ... the master believed that, “Karate Jutsu is a way of life, the way to understand and preserve Karate Jutsu is through kata, and through kata actual fighting techniques can be taught.” This is the essence of Takahara Peichin’s legacy.

One of Takahara’s top students was Sakugawa, later to be known as Tode Sakugawa at his sensei’s final wish on his deathbed. He passed away in 1762 knowing that Sakugawa would fulfil his visions and set the course for the future of all of Karate Jutsu.

Among his achievements, receiving the title to be addressed “Peichin”, for distinguished service.