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About Antony Cummins
Antony Cummins is an author-historian who concentrates on medieval Japanese warfare and is the founder of the Historical Ninjutsu Research Team, a team dedicated to the translation and publication of historical shinobi manuals into the English language. His goal is to bring together the greatest amount of reference material on the ninja and to help form a correct image of the truth behind Japanese samurai warfare. In his works you will discover the lost ways of the ninja, ancient stories of samurai heroes and secrets that have been hidden away for centuries.
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Titles By Antony Cummins
In 1676, a ninja named Fujibayashi collected and combined information from the ninja clans of Iga—regarded to be the homeland of the ninja—and compiled it into an authoritative book. Known as The Bansenhukai, Fujibayashi's book has now been translated into English by the Historical Ninjutsu Research Team and is widely considered to be the ‘bible’ of ninjutsu, the arts of the ninja.
The Book of Ninja begins with an in-depth introduction to the history of Fujibayashi's scripture. The teachings themselves, appealingly rendered in this translation, then take us into the secrets of guerrilla warfare and espionage. We learn how to become the ultimate spy, whether through a network of spies or by hiding in plain sight. Through the stealth and concealment tactics of night-time infiltration, through weapon and tool building skills, and through mission planning, we can learn much both about warfare and about adopting the right mindset for tackling our own inner and outer enemies. Adding to the mix for the spycraft lover, there are sections on capturing criminals, performing night raids, making secret codes and signs, and even techniques for predicting the weather, and using an esoteric Buddhist system of divination. An exciting and engaging tome of lost knowledge, The Book of Ninja is the final say in the world of the ninja and the ultimate classic for samurai and ninja enthusiasts alike.
Composed in the 5th century BC, Sun Tzu's Art of War is the earliest-known treatise on military strategy, and is still hugely popular around the world for its perceptive tactical advice to commanders on how to win at war with minimal bloodshed.
Aimed at all those who want to study the text in depth, this is the first step-by-step guide to the famous treatise, breaking down the 13 chapters of the original into 200 easily digested lessons, from 'do not press a desperate enemy' to 'control your troops through bond of loyalty' to 'when you are weak, beware attack', all accompanied by comprehensive commentary and clarified with around 250 illustrations. Making the lessons even more memorable and easy to understand, the black/red illustrations include strategic diagrams, evocative line drawings and beautiful calligraphy.
This ultimate guide to Art of War includes the classic 1910 translation by Lionel Giles and commentary that takes into account all academic interpretations of the text, highlighting differences between modern translations as well as the perspectives of historical Chinese commentators. No other edition compares and contrasts the viewpoints of different contemporary translators, or explains exactly what each section of this often enigmatic text actually means.
The concept of yin yang can be found in some of the oldest writing in the world. It is fundamental to Chinese thought and the route to understanding most Chinese practices, from Traditional Chinese Medicine to Daoism and feng shui. It also offers us ways of enhancing our own lives, establishing greater balance not only in our own environment but also in the wider world if we can work with other people to follow nature's flow.
The central question of the book is "What is yin yang?" Step by step, with plenty of helpful illustrations and graphics, it explores the history and changing uses of yin yang - not forgetting the pronunciation and spelling (why yinyang is actually better than yin yang). The book also makes suggestions for working with yin yang, from observing the landscape to get a sense of the ebb and flow of energy through the world, to studying the patterns of nature in order to take what you need but not too much, to approaching sex as a cosmic ritual. After reading this book, readers will understand how to position themselves so that yin yang fills their lives with abundance - how to be in the right place at the right time.
For centuries, the Japanese samurai were the unquestioned leaders of their society, maintaining their position through their iron will, Zen-like emotional control, and clan-building social skills. Today, in a modern world that so often privileges instant gratification and self-indulgence, few commit to the Way of the Samurai, yet this challenging path of self-discipline, self-control, and dedication will bring great rewards to those who follow it.
In this ultimate guide to making use of the authentic samurai practices and techniques in today’s world, learn how to control your mind and emotions, stay on the path until you have achieved mastery of your chosen art, build a network of loyal followers, defend your home from physical and psychic attack, use samurai spirituality and even magic—and much more.
Part of the acclaimed Book of Samurai series, which presents for the first time the translated scrolls of the historical Natori-Ryū samurai school of war, this volume offers an exceptional insight into the weaponry and armour of the samurai era, as well as tactical advice for use on and off the battlefield.
Two secret scrolls by the samurai tactician Natori Sanjūrō Masazumi are presented here: Heieki Yōhō, which offers advice for every possible martial situation, from moving troops to besieging a castle to fighting on the open battlefield; and Heigu Yōhō, which explores samurai arms and armour in unparalleled detail. Illustrated with 130 line drawings of arms and armour, strategic diagrams and beautiful samples of Japanese calligraphy, this is essential reading for students of martial arts, warrior culture and the samurai path.
This book was written by the seventeenth-century samurai tactician Natori Sanjūrō Masazumi, also known as Issui-sensei, who was to become the most influential grandmaster of the Natori-Ryū school of war. It gives us an unprecedented insight into what the samurai knew about their own specialization—armour and warfare. By listening to a genuine samurai, we can discover a huge amount about the thoughts, ideals, codes and even the feelings of this much admired, but often misunderstood, warrior class.
Heieki Yōhō, the first scroll translated in this book, gives leadership advice for use on and off the battlefield. From turning thieves or cowards to good service, to practising ‘external listening’ in order to obtain information from as many sources as possible, to penetrating the deeper motives of those who slander or praise others, the ideas discussed are thought provoking and paint a vivid picture of samurai Japan at war. Heigu Yōhō, the second scroll, gives a rare and precious glimpse into samurai arms and armour, including details of their construction, regulations associated with the wearer’s status, and the fascinating ceremonies, mythology and Buddhist doctrine that underlay their use. With 130 line drawings that clarify the text, this is the ultimate resource for all those interested in the wisdom and practice of the historical samurai.
Antony Cummins and Yoshie Minami have brought the teachings of the famed samurai school Natori-Ryu back to life through The Book of Samurai series. This first installment is a translation of two secret scrolls and establishes the Fundamental Teachings of a samurai student, revealing the basic traditions of Natori-Ryu.
The first scroll, Heika Jodan, contains 290 lessons that define the baseline for samurai during times of peace—a time which is considered as preparation for war. It focuses each student on expanding their own ability and conduct, giving them the mind-set needed for any battles to come. The second scroll, Ippei Yoko, moves the student onto the field of battle. It provides them with an understanding of what is expected during a campaign of war and the necessary guidance for samurai who are to take up arms for the first time. These first two Natori-Ryu documents are an in-depth and detailed account of the practicality of samurai warfare, opening up the lost world of these Japanese warriors to all modern readers.
The Dark Side of Japan is profusely illustrated, with drawings showcasing the ‘hellish’ concepts within. And remarkably hellish they are, too. Consider the kappa: ‘goblin-like creatures that have the body of a child, the face of a tiger adorned with a beak and the shell of a turtle. They drag people into rivers and ponds and drown them. If a woman gives birth to a kappa baby after being raped, the baby is hacked to death.’
The shinobi, or ninja, is one of the most widely recognized figures in the world of espionage—and also one of the most misrepresented. What do we really know about the historical shinobi, his tactics, and his role in medieval Japanese society? In The Secret Traditions of the Shinobi, these questions—and many more—are answered. Translated into English for the very first time, this widely sought-after collection of historical documents brings to light the secret practices, techniques, philosophies, and lifestyles of the shinobi.
• the Shinobi Hiden, or "Secret Ninja Tradition," a documentation of techniques commonly attributed to one of the best-known ninja masters, Hattori Hanzo;
• the Koka Ryu Ninjutsu Densho, a small but important work from the Edo period that reveals the realm of ninja magic and spells;
• the three shinobi scrolls of the Gunpo Jiyoshu, a manual enthusiastically promoted by Tokugawa Ieyasu, the first Tokugawa shogun of Japan;
• one hundred poems written between the twelfth and fifteenth centuries—making them the oldest collection of written ninjutsu information in the world; and
• seventy historical black-and-white illustrations depicting ninja tools and weapons.
The Secret Traditions of the Shinobi will enthrall martial artists eager to learn the real skills of the shinobi, as well as anyone interested in this exciting period of Japanese history and espionage.
Samurai and Ninja expert Antony Cummins shatters the myths and exposes the true nature of these very real--and very lethal--medieval Japanese warriors. The Samurai and Ninja were, in fact, brutal killing machines trained in torture and soaked in machismo. Many were skilled horsemen and sword-fighting specialists, while others were masters of deception and sabotage. Some fought for loyalty, others for personal gain. What these warriors all shared in common was their unflinching personal bravery, skill and brutality.
In Samurai and Ninja, Cummins separates myth from reality and shows why the Japanese were the greatest warriors of all time:
- He describes the Samurai and the Ninja as they really were in earlier times when battles raged across Japan--not in later times when war became obsolete and Japanese warriors became philosophers, scholars and courtiers.
- He describes the social context of the day and the feudal world into which the warriors were trained to fight and die for their lords.
- He exposes the essentially brutal nature of warfare in medieval Japan.
Authors Antony Cummins and Yoshie Minami worked closely with Dr. Nakashima Atsumi, author of the most comprehensive modern Japanese version of the Shoninki, thus making this English translation the closest to the original scrolls. The information and insights found in this translation are invaluable for understanding the skills, techniques and mentality of the historical shinobi. Whether it involved tips for surviving in the wild, advice on intelligence-gathering techniques, or methods for creating chaos in the enemy camp, this ninja book unveils secrets long lost. Along with its practical applications, this book is an important guide to the mental discipline that ninjas must have to ensure success in accomplishing their mission.
True Path of the Ninja covers the following topics:
- What a ninja is and what equipment he needs
- The skills of infiltration and information gathering
- How to disrupt and distract the enemy
- How to be mentally prepared to carry out ninja missions
About this new edition:
This second edition contains a new introduction by the translator and has been thoroughly updated to reflect developments that shed new light on the original Japanese text.
This is the go-to volume on bushido ("the way of the warrior"), drawing on a wide range of historical sources to paint a vivid picture of the samurai in action and separating the truth from the myth of samurai chivalry. It offers a long-overdue update to the attractive but inaccurate portrait of the samurai painted in Bushido: The Soul of Japan, which has been a bestseller ever since its publication in 1905, and the equally idealistic Hagakure (c.1716).
In The Book of Bushido, Antony explores the reality of warrior behaviour versus the idealistic depiction created for an Edwardian audience by the author of Bushido: The Soul of Japan. He reveals the truth of how the samurai really behaved and of what they considered to be a warrior ethos. He replaces the image of the perfect eastern warrior with the much more interesting reality of hardened, bloodstained military leaders with human failings and a complex set of ideas about the world, who engage in ritual, magic and ceremony, who lead their followers in war and peace and who, above all, are fighting a battle between addiction to power and morality. This is the story of bushido – the way of the samurai.
This is the first book ever to present the authentic ninja techniques in a highly accessible, illustrated 'how to' format. The shadowy figure of the ninja – expert commando, secret agent, maverick who operates outside social norms – continues to exert fascination in the West, yet much of what is presented as ninja fact today is distorted or wrong. Drawing on the scrolls created by historical Japanese ninjas (or shinobi, as they were then known), this book offers the real ninja teachings in 150 easy-to-follow, illustrated lessons designed to draw contemporary students of ninja straight into the world of these skilled spy-commandos. The truth about the ninja is so much more complex and intriguing than the Hollywood clichés we know today. We may think, for example, of a ninja as being always garbed in black and fighting with 'throwing stars' but in fact, a ninja had clothes in different colours to serve as disguises for different times of day, and their arsenal of weaponry could include anything from poison, poison gas, pepper spray and fire-creating tools to swords, spears and knives (but no throwing stars). The 150 lessons in this book cover all the basics of ninja warcraft, including clever ideas for infiltrating an enemy compound (from wearing 'silent sandals' to faking passes and passwords), tactics for hiding and retreat (in the racoon dog retreat, a ninja will crouch low and halt, allowing the pursuer to collide with him at speed, whereupon the agent kills his enemy), and ways of crossing marshes and water (for example, with special shoes made of boards, or using a foldaway floating seat). The description is made all the more vivid by step-by-step photographs of the fighting techniques, diagrams outlining military tactics and beautiful samples of Japanese calligraphy.