24 Replies to “The Empty Mind – Kyudo or Japanese Archery”

  1. Thats not what I was taught via ancient Japanese scrolls of the Bujinkan Togakure Ryo Soke clan or whatever you call it… The archers carry the bow by their left side because one archer would be riding the horse while the other would be seated without mounting the horse. The reason they SHOOT to their left is to use longer arrows and longer bows that can go further than their enemies arrows. It takes alot of strength to draw a bow not the way the western or other cultures draw it but using your chest muscles and arm muscles to spread the bow apart and shoot without looking… the theory behind that is the person riding the horse will do the steering and the archer simply has to focus on shooting as many arrows as he can and it is a shot gun approach to killing as many men before their arrows could reach the archer and his horseman.. That is what was translated as to why they practice and shoot the way they do… It makes sense to me since longer bows can accomodate longer arrows which for not compound bows makes the arrow have greater range.

    The Chinese and other armies of the European and Roman empires also practice some of the same philosophy when it comes to shooting. They shoot at about a 60 degree incline so as to get more range and the furthest they can shoot the first arrow is where the infantry front line will start lining up to prevent enemy lines from breaching the boundary. The archers behind will then shoot into the air and kill any approaching forces before they reach the infantry barricade frontline of soldiers.

    The Japanese have improved on this technology by using longer bows while they are seated up top on a horseback which takes longer arrows and so their effective killing range is much longer than their enemies without rish of their enemies arrows ever hitting them. The horseman will turn around the moment he senses that the opposing partys arrows are within reach and go refill the arrow holster.

  2. Apparently there is much more to zen archery than whether you hit the target. There's a whole spiritual element that happens as well. This is art, focus, meditation, and missing the damn shot!

  3. You’d think that the point of any archery-based meditation where a target is involved is that the meditation and breathing would be geared towards self-honing and hitting the target. But nope! Not Kyudo. It’s basically just meditation in going through ceremonial motions of archery – of which, there are TONS of unnecessary movements, contrary to what the narrator said (when strictly speaking on the topic of expediently getting an arrow nocked, drawn, and loosed INTO the target, that is.) Call it me not “getting” Kyudo all you want, cause I agree! I don’t get it, and I don’t think that’s a bad thing for myself at least.

  4. Om is the bow, the arrow is soul
    Brahman is the arrows goal
    It must strike unswervingly
    Mundaka Upanishads

  5. the apologetic dumbasses in the comments just give excuses, excuses. too much fooling around with superstitious, pointless, useless, meaningness made up nonsense, not actually any, you know, hitting the target. the usual foreign bullshit

  6. Look guys, it's a religion. It's no more silly and pointless than any other. The best way to explain it to a christian is like this: –
    When they draw the bow, they are essentially praying or (more accurately singing a hymn). If the arrow hits the target, it's considered a sort of minor miracle. You don't expect a miracle every time you go to church do you?
    It's all about how beautiful is the singing – not the result of it.
    And yes, all religion is pointless – but we can still enjoy the music.

  7. It's not about hitting the target, it's about performing the act perfectly. Hitting the target is entirely secondary to the quality of one's form. By practicing the movements thousands of times so that they are natural and perfect, and knowing that it is indeed perfect, one can achieve a simultaneous peace of mind and body. This is done for meditation purposes. If this were war archery, there would be a much greater emphasis on speed and accuracy, but this is simply about doing it right. Slow, steady, and perfect.

  8. if it's in the real situation of war, the archers would be long dead before they shoot the arrow…

  9. Those discrediting this spiritual art would as well enter a shrine or church and find it not applicable.

  10. I can robin hood arrows at that distance with my hoyt compound. And I don't need all that goofy build up.

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