Mindanao Evacuation Documented

May 5, 2008

August and September 2008 Nippon Kan General Headquarters has made many friends through AHAN all over the world, and has a special relationship with AHAN Mindanao Coordinator Ava Yancha and her students in Illigan City, Mindanao Island in the Philippines. Ava has been especially active in the development of peace and human resource development through the Aikido she shares with …

Aikido and Community in Cali, Columbia

May 5, 2008

Written by Gaku Homma Nippon Kan Kancho May 5, 2008 Immigration was so crowded and the lines so long in Bogota that I missed my connection to Cali. This unfortunately was the last flight for the evening, which meant I would be spending the night in the airport. Colombia is a warm-weather country, but inside the airport was downright cold. …

Bujutsu Fighting Gangs in East Timor Part II

February 11, 2008

Written by Gaku Homma February 11, 2008 When I awoke that morning, I could tell that something was wrong. In the sky, Australian military helicopters hovered slow and deliberately, low on the horizon. UN police vehicles and military cars moved in quickly through the streets. I had a meeting scheduled that morning with the principal of the police academy. At …

Homma Kancho’s Travel Notes and Photo Log

February 5, 2008

East Timor Feb 5th-11th, 2008 Feb 5th, 2008 Flew from Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia to Dili the capital of East Timor on Malpachi Airlines. The airplane cabin temperature was freezing. Why do they need to keep it so cold? The gentleman seated next to me explained that there was a very good reason– sothe flies and mosquitoes could not survive. Another …

Bujutsu Fighting Gangs in East Timor PART I

January 5, 2008

Written by Gaku Homma January 5th, 2008 Wherever I teach, I usually begin with two thoughts. “Human beings make the martial arts; the martial arts do not make human beings”. “Bujutsu (martial fighting techniques) have been developed from man’s human instinct for survival. Budo or the Way of the Martial Arts has developed from man’s search for self”. I have …

New Definitions for Humanitarian Graduate Studies

November 10, 2007

I will never forget that child. The sound of his voice and his image will always remain in my memory. His voice was high like a child’s but from blocks away you could hear the distress in his tone. I could hear his voice above the din of the crowded streets of Dhaka. Riding in a rickshaw, we passed a …

The Teapot I Found in Tehran; Reflections on My Visit to Iran.

July 30, 2007

Written by Gaku Homma Nippon Kan Kancho July 30th, 2007 I am not a priest or a politician. Nor am I an activist. I could be described as one who makes dust by repeatedly hitting the mat. That’s what my family used to say anyway. When I told people that I was going to Iran, my statement was usually met …

No Suwariwaza (Kneeling Techniques)* at Nippon Kan

June 15, 2007

written by Gaku Homma Nippon Kan Kancho June 15th, 2007 *suwariwaza is technically defined as “seated techniques”, but” kneeling techniques” is a more accurate description. On June 30th, 1966 the music of the Beatles was introduced to Japan and by 1967 Twiggy had landed. In the late 60’s and early 70’s, the Beatles popularity was at its peak and English …

Returning Home; the True Mission of the Samurai.

April 16, 2007

Joint United States and Philippine Military Medical Mission Eyewitness Report. Written by Gaku Homma Nippon Kan Kancho April 6th, 2007 A few years ago there were two popular Japanese movies being shown in theaters in the United States. I am not a movie critic, so I can’t tell you which one was better, but from my point of view as …

Aikido; Between Earth and Sky.

April 15, 2007

Written by Gaku Homma  April 15th, 2007 In mid-February 2007 I set out on a thirty two day journey through South East Asia with visits to Mongolia, the Philippines, Nepal, Bangladesh and India; five countries in all! On this trip as others, I met many wonderful people and had a variety of incredible experiences. I had been to most of …

Lessons Learned: Reflections of the Matsukawa Kyougaku Taiko Concert Tour to Turkey

November 15, 2006

Written by Gaku Homma November 15th, 2006 After checking through immigrations at the Istanbul Airport, all ten drummers paused on their way to their gate to smile and wave farewell. They all had a glow on their faces, a look that reflected the success of the last week together in Turkey. The Turkish volunteer staff, which had spent countless hours …

Japanese Restaurants and Martial Art Dojos Outside of Japan

October 9, 2006

By Gaku Homma Nippon Kan Kancho October 9th, 2006 I wrote the following article about current events in the Japanese restaurant industry and recent attempts by Japanese government authorities to set “quality control” standards for Japanese restaurants outside of Japan. Some of the thinking behind these proposed controls I think are very dangerous for Japan’s standing at large on the …

A Gift of Time from a Special Young Man

September 20, 2006

Written by Gaku Homma Sept 20th, 2006 At 6:00 am., this particular young man was already up cleaning the dojo. The dojo facility at Nippon Kan is quite large, and he would work patiently until the job was done. After watering the gardens and wiping down the patio tables we would have breakfast together. After breakfast it was time for …

A Dangerous Message

May 30, 2006

Written by Gaku Homma, Nippon Kan Kancho May 30th, 2006 IISA (Instructors in Support of AHAN) are instructors of many different styles and affiliations who support AHAN’s philosophy of service to the community through humanitarian and community service projects in their own towns and cities. As part of AHAN’s IISA program, instructor education is very important, especially for instructors who …

Ten Day Travel Diary; In Japan with Ali Uludag Sensei.

April 24, 2006

April 24th-May 5th, 2006 Written by Gaku Homma Nippon Kan Kancho ARRIVAL AT NARITA AIRPORT TOKYO, JAPAN I thought that Ali Sensei might have a little trouble with immigration so I was not surprised when he was delayed. I started getting concerned however after an hour had passed, everyone else had gone and even the baggage carousel had stopped. Finally …