Araki ryu Torite Kogusoku

Essential Reading

Core Reading - Writing on Koryu by Ellis Amdur

For those interested in Araki-ryu, as well as Amdur's writing on other aspects of koryu bugei:

1.  Old School: Japanese Martial Traditions - Expanded Edition (publication pending)

2.  The Classical Warrior Traditions of Japan (Three Part Series)

Also by Ellis Amdur

3.  Dueling with Osensei: Grappling with the Myth of the Warrior-Sage - Expanded Edition (publication pending)

4.  Hidden in Plain Sight: Tracing the Roots of Ueshiba Morihei's Power

General Reading Specific to Japanese Martial Traditions

The reading list in this section are books written by other authors on Japanese martial traditions which are invaluable to an understanding of the nature of the ryu-ha and their role within Japanese culture.

Bennett, Alex (ed.), Budo Perspectives:  Volume 1, Kendo World Publications, Auckland, New Zealand, 2005

Deprospero, Dan & Jackie, Illuminated Spirit: Conversations with a Kyudo Master

Draeger, Donn, The Martial Arts & Ways of Japan (Three Volumes) Weatherhill; 1st edition (April 12, 2007)

Friday, Karl, Legacies of the Sword: The Kashima-Shinryu and Samurai Martial Culture, University of Hawaii Press, Honolulu, HI, 1997

Otake, Risuke, Katori Shinto-ryu:  Warrior Tradition

The Bedrock - Books on Japanese History Invaluable to the Understanding of the Development of Araki-ryu

The reading list, below, includes books from different era that will serve to illuminate the role of bugei within Japanese history, as well as books that provide a pictures of the milieu in which Araki-ryu existed at different times in its history.  Without this understanding, you will have no idea whatsoever of the context in which Araki-ryu developed and the role it played in different periods of Japanese history.

  • Araki-ryu may have developed in a time of war, but it flourished for 300+ years in a rigid society in which social order and a stratified society was the highest goal.
  • The Meiji era was a remarkable period of revolution, violence and creativity.
  • Modern Japan, particularly in the build-up to WWII, is especially significant, because it is probably in the realm of right-wing activism that the core values of the Japanese warrior class survived into modern times..

Friday, Karl, Hired Swords: The Rise of Private Warrior Power in Early Japan, Stanford University Press, Stanford, CA, 1996

Friday, Karl, The First Samurai: The Life and Legend of the Warrior Rebel, Taira Masakado, Wiley, Pub., 2007

Varley, Paul, Warriors of Japan as Portrayed in the War Tales, University of Hawai'i Press, Honolulu, HI, 1994.

Early Medieval Period (Kamakura, Namboku)

Adolphson, Mikael S., The Teeth and Claws of the Buddha: Monastic Warriors and Sōhei in Japanese History, University of Hawai’i Press, Honolulu, Hawaii, 2007

Friday, Karl, Samurai, Warfare and the State in Early Medieval Japan, Routledge, New York, NY, 2004


Siniawer, Eiko Maruko, Ruffians, Yakuza, Nationalists:  The Violent Politics of Modern Japan, 1860 - 1960, Cornell University Press, Ithaca & London, 2008

Walthall, Anee, THE WEAK BODY OF A USELESS WOMAN:  Matsuo Taseko and the Meiji Restoration, University of Chicago Press, Chicago, IL, 1998


Bergamini, David, JAPAN'S IMPERIAL CONSPIRACY, William Morrow and Company, New York, NY, 1971

Byas, Hugh, Government by Assassination, Alfred A Knopf, New York, NY, 1942

Mercado, Stephen, THE SHADOW WARRIORS OF NAKANO:  A History of the Imperial Japanese Army's Elite Intelligence School, Brassy's, Inc., Washington, D.C., 2002

The 21st Century

Singer, P. W., WIRED FOR WAR:  The Robotics Revolution and Conflict in the 21st Century, Penguin Books, New York, N.Y., 2009

Cyber-Warfare - The Fifth Dimension by David Rubens of Meido Consultants