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IAI - Isao Machii/Interview - IS JAPAN COOL? DOU (居合 - 町井 勲)

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IS JAPAN COOL? DOU https://www.ana-cooljapan.com/contents/dou/ Iai is one of Japan’s traditional martial arts. It’s the reverse of tachiai, which is a face-off between two swordsmen, standing opposite each other with weapons in hand, ready for crucial combat. Unlike tachiai, iai is sudden or accidental confrontation between swordsmen — seating near each other, colliding with each other, or just staying nearby — that turns into an immediate fight. DOU is the way of life that comes close to reaching the essence of existence in pursuit of one’s own field. The ultimate goal of Japanese martial arts (budo) such as judo, kyudo, kendo, karatedo, iaido, etc. is not only to acquire the techniques (waza) of these martial skills, but also adhere to the way of life that constantly trains the body and the spirit in building character. The ultimate purpose of Japanese traditional performing/fine arts (geido) such as shodo, nihon-buyo, sado, noh (nogaku), etc. is not simply to acquire the kata (forms), actions, and manners of these artistic skills, but also bring devotion to ceaseless pursuit of perfect beauty without end. This time, we at ANA focus on introducing the ways of Japanese traditional martial arts and performing/fine arts — legacies accumulated over long eras and inherited by many artists from ancient times to the present.We want to help pass along these intangible cultural assets to new generations in a “tangible” manner.

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