Aikido, a martial art based on rich Japanese traditions, was developed by ‘O Sensei’ (Great Teacher) over a period of more than 60 years.
O Sensei, ° december 14th 1883 + april 26th 1969, was the most famous student of Sakaku Takeda, head of Daito Ryu Jujutsu, a school with a 900 years samurai tradition.
O Sensei was a modern samurai with strong pacifist beliefs. He modernised the Daito Ryu techniques and mainly the Aiki-concept (harmonise or blend the power) that was formarly held secret and was said to be “the real technique”.
In aikido we strive to understand the aiki-concept through the practice of core basic techniques and endless variations of these techniques.
The basics are merely the external form. The ‘Truth’ – ‘DO’ can only be found by sincere and thorough study during intense partner practice. Then ‘Takemusu Aiki’ happens: in the moment new techniques are born…
Our sensei Tomita Seiji shihan, °march 10th 1938 in Western Japan, began to study Budo at age 6 with Sumo, Kendo, Judo and Karate. At the age of 18 he met O Sensei and decided to dedicate himself entirely to Aikido under the guidance of Tanaka Bansen sensei, whose dojo was frequently visited by O Sensei.
The lessons of O Sensei were expensive, his demonstrations hard and his doctrine subtle and esoteric.
In 1971 Tomita sensei founded teh Yamashina dojo and the Kyoto Aikido Association.
In 1985 he travelled to Europe and spent some weeks teaching in in several dojos in Belgium. Two years later he returned to Belgium and founded ‘Ban Sen Juku’ in Antwerp in 1988. New dojos opened soon after in Brussels – the heart of Europe, Leuven, Ghent and Liège. Today branch dojos are active in Kyoto, Tahiti, Spain, Réunion and France.
Ban Sen Juku, the name of the school refers to Tanaka Bansen but it also means “fan” in Japanese. This traditional ‘weapon’ symbolises the essence of aikido and traditional Japanese martial arts that Tomita sensei teaches: one is equal to then thousand and then thousand to one.
Ban Sen Juku thus translates as
“THE SCHOOL OF THEN THOUSAND STREAMS”.
© 2018 Jan Vanspauwen · Ban Sen Juku Leuven – Masakatsu Dojo