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#1 2008-09-27 21:11:40

Austin Shadduck
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From: New York, NY
Registered: 2008-09-21
Posts: 38
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Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

I am trying to get a better grasp of the history between the emergence of Fuke Zen to the disbanding of the komuso and the Fukeshu in 1871, and I have a few questions. I am new to this so I appreciate any help in setting my ideas straight! From what I understand, the practice of suizen (or meditating through the shakuhachi) is what distinguishes Fuke Zen from other sects of Zen Buddhism. This idea of playing the shakuhachi as a path to enlightenment can be traced back to the poetry of Zen priest Ikky Zenji (1394-1482); the literature describes wandering priests who played shakuhachi and it describes the meditative properties of the instrument (Blasdel and Lee). According to legend, Ran, friend of Ikky, is potentially the first of these wandering priests that became known as komoso by at least the first half of the 16th century. What I am confused about is the contribution of Shinchi Kakushin (12071298) to Fuke Zen. In another post on this site I found the following link:

http://zen.rinnou.net/whats_zen/history.html

On the website is says, "Kakushin is regarded as the founder of the influential Hotto 法燈 (also Hatto) line of Rinzai Zen and of the Japanese Fuke school 普化宗, a tradition of largely lay practicers who wandered about the country playing the shakuhachi 尺八, a bamboo flute whose music was regarded as an aid to enlightenment."

The site places the beginnings of the Fuke sect in Japan back about 100 years to 1254. I haven't seen any mention of this in Dr. Lee's thesis, except in regards to the origin of the "original" Fuke sect temple. Is this info just mythology as far as we know?

I'm also confused about the use of the shakuhachi as an instrument of destruction. Didn't the ronin who became komuso before the establishment of the Fukeshu have the right to carry a sword? If so, why would they have needed to use the shakuhachi as a weapon or for defense? Did the ronin have to give up their swords in order to make a living as a mendicant priest, in order to be believable as pious monks? If the answer to the last question is yes then the progression from hitoyogiri to root-end shakuhachi makes more sense to me. The idea of "kenka shakuhachi" coming about before the root-end shakuhachi also makes more sense then.

Last edited by Austin Shadduck (2008-09-28 01:08:28)


His first, last and only formal instruction for me was embodied in one word: observe. -Billy Strayhorn on Duke Ellington

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#2 2008-09-27 21:41:34

Priapus Le Zen M☮nk
Historical Zen Mod
From: St-Jerome, Quebec, Canada
Registered: 2006-04-25
Posts: 612
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Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

Austin Shadduck wrote:

I'm also confused about the use of the shakuhachi as an instrument of destruction. Didn't the ronin who became komuso before the establishment of the Fukeshu have the right to carry a sword? If so, why would they have needed to use the shakuhachi as a weapon or for defense? Did the ronin have to give up their swords in order to make a living as a mendicant priest, in order to be believable as pious monks? If the answer to the last question is yes then the progression from hitoyogiri to root-end shakuhachi makes more sense to me. The idea of "kenka shakuhachi" coming about before the root-end shakuhachi also makes more sense then.

To some extent it would be beating the same dead horse as what was discussed before. The whole using the Shakuhachi as a weapon did happen BUT as some isolated incidents that was later put into Kabuki plays the also gave some of the wood block prints we see. What is innacurate and wrong is some people mostly westerners equating all this to the following conclusion --->>> Komuso were usually monks or Ex-Samurai/ Ronin, So if Samurai knew how to use swords and martial ways PLUS we see wood block prints showing them in beating someone or in a combative position with a Shakuhachi then it means they had some sort of secret technique on how to use flutes as weapons. This is false and only leads people in searching for stuff that never existed or did not exist in the way it is presented by some incompetents reaching conclusions just by   seeing some wood block prints and reading 1 or 2 stories involving bashing someone with a flute.

Anyway other than using a Shakuhachi for self defense when nothing else is available the usage of a Shakuhachi against a swordsman is quite stupid and futile. As far as sword carrying if you were of warrior class you had the right to at least carry the long sword/Katana and if of higher class you could wear the Daisho/ Katana and Wakisashi. Commoners were only allowed to wear the Wakisashi or Tanto. So since Komuso were either monks or Ex Samurai that had renounced to their status they would only have been allowed to wear Waksisashi or Tanto.


Sebastien 義真 Cyr
春風館道場 Shunpukan Dojo
St-Jerome, Quebec, Canada
http://www.myspace.com/shunpukandojo

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#3 2008-09-27 23:55:33

Austin Shadduck
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From: New York, NY
Registered: 2008-09-21
Posts: 38
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Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

Gishin wrote:

What is innacurate and wrong is some people mostly westerners equating all this to the following conclusion --->>> Komuso were usually monks or Ex-Samurai/ Ronin, So if Samurai knew how to use swords and martial ways PLUS we see wood block prints showing them in beating someone or in a combative position with a Shakuhachi then it means they had some sort of secret technique on how to use flutes as weapons. This is false and only leads people in searching for stuff that never existed or did not exist in the way it is presented by some incompetents reaching conclusions just by   seeing some wood block prints and reading 1 or 2 stories involving bashing someone with a flute.

There's a conclusion that I won't make. I figured there were only isolated incidents of using the shakuhachi as a weapon or for protection. Although this idea is a fascinating (if small) part of shakuhachi history, I'm more concerned with how much it affected the transition to using root-end shakuhachi. The shakuhachi could certainly make for a club, but if you're carrying something like a wakizashi then there's not much point for that.

I also realized that I may be confusing Fuke Zen, Fuke sect and Fukeshu. I thought Fuke sect was pretty much equivalent to Fuke Zen (basically being a sub-sect of the Rinzai school of Zen Buddhism). Fuke sect seems to be almost equivalent to Fukeshu in Dr. Lee's thesis. I've even seen the term Fuke-shu sect, which seems seems redundant. To make it more confusing:

http://www.shakuhachi.com/Q-Origins&History.html

uses a different meaning for Fuke sect: "...[the shakuhachi's] popularity, however, was short-lived and it wasn't until the Thirteenth Century that it was revived by the Fuke sect of Buddhism which sought to replace sutra chanting with sui zen or "blowing zen." I know that certain documents were forged when trying to establish the Fukeshu as a legitimate organization in the Edo period, but it seems like the practice of suizen (which I thought went hand-in-hand with the Fuke sect of Zen Buddhism) was in practice long before the Fukeshu. I suppose these definitions depend on when the terms suizen and Fuke Zen, or equivalents, came into being. I think the most clear term is Fukeshu, which denotes the religious organization that komuso operated within during the Edo period. I would think that the Fuke sect doesn't refer to the same organization, but rather to the division of Buddhism that had been around before the Fukeshu.

Last edited by Austin Shadduck (2008-09-28 00:55:40)


His first, last and only formal instruction for me was embodied in one word: observe. -Billy Strayhorn on Duke Ellington

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#4 2008-09-28 07:13:49

Priapus Le Zen M☮nk
Historical Zen Mod
From: St-Jerome, Quebec, Canada
Registered: 2006-04-25
Posts: 612
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Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

I do not know why people are confused or searching for origins etc when it is actually pretty clear if you take each elements in a separate fashion.

Fuke/Puhua= Crazy monk cited in the Linji-Lu/Rinzai-Roku. He has never written anything or ever been cited or noted for ant special practices. All we know of him (If he truly existed) is his appearance the book of Rinzai. In China there never was a School or Branch of Buddhism or even technique based on him and his way or stuff he did in the Rinzai roku. so dont search for any special or secret book on him there is none.


Fuke Zen/Fuke Shu/ Suizen= Usage of the Ichi On Jobutsu term (One sound for enlightenment) based on Fuke ringing a bell by Japanese monks to give some form of lineage and legitimity to their made up School/Group. Anyway lets face it Fuke was walking around ringing a bell talking jiberrish and slapping people to enlighten them. This is very far away and does not have any direct relation with the Japanese notion of the act of Suizen as playing a bamboo flute to reach some form of mental state. Komuso were not there to teach to people or freak them out. they just walked around or played flute at temples.

So as I was saying we should not make much of the whole Fuke-Story in Japan other than look into it for historical trivia and facts. The only tangible and real thing is the music/sound than we can learn and practice.


Sebastien 義真 Cyr
春風館道場 Shunpukan Dojo
St-Jerome, Quebec, Canada
http://www.myspace.com/shunpukandojo

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#5 2008-09-28 12:37:22

Mujitsu
Administrator/Flutemaker
From: San Francisco
Registered: 2005-10-05
Posts: 885
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Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

Austin Shadduck wrote:

I figured there were only isolated incidents of using the shakuhachi as a weapon or for protection. Although this idea is a fascinating (if small) part of shakuhachi history, I'm more concerned with how much it affected the transition to using root-end shakuhachi. The shakuhachi could certainly make for a club, but if you're carrying something like a wakizashi then there's not much point for that.

Hi Austin,

I'm not an historical scholar, but the physics of shakuhachi is interesting to ponder here. A shakuhachi cut at the root gives the bore a natural taper. A shakuhachi cut above ground has little or no taper. Many players feel a tapered bore results in better depth of tone, more resistance and better octave tuning. Perhaps the desire to improve the instrument was invovled in the transition from cylindrical to tapered bore?

Ken

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#6 2008-09-28 14:35:17

Austin Shadduck
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From: New York, NY
Registered: 2008-09-21
Posts: 38
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Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

Mujitsu, thank you for that suggestion. Maybe the quest for a richer sound coupled with the desire of the ronin shakuhachi-playing priests to separate themselves from the typically lower-class komoso led to changes in shakuhachi design? Interesting stuff.

Gishin, I still don't understand... I'm not really confused about Fuke/Puhua and how his legend was used to give the komuso religious legitimacy. I'm really looking for definitions. Is Fuke sect equivalent to Fuke sh? (Does sh mean "sect" or "school" in Japanese?)

In summary of what was said before, members of the Fuke sect/Fukeshu were known as komuso and practiced what can be called Fuke Zen, which means that they practiced suizen (playing the shakuhachi as a path to enlightenment). One of the tenets of Fuke Zen is ichion jobutsu, or "enlightenment in a single sound." That is not to say that the komuso only played one note, but rather (please correct me if I am wrong) each sound ideally embodied the nature of life itself and could reveal life lessons (such as the understanding that life is as fleeting as a single shakuhachi sound and the impermanence of life is a natural phenomenon to be at peace with).

The tradition of mendicant priests playing shakuhachi as a way of opening their minds can be traced back to at least the early 15th century poetry of Ikky Zenji. Here's where I am unclear. Even if there was not a name for it at the time, were the priests essentially practicing suizen? Does anyone know when the term ichion jobutsu came into being and when it was first used in relation to playing the shakuhachi? What about the term suizen? 

Finally, when I see information about the Fuke sect beginning in the 13th century with Shinchi Kakushin, is that simply part of the mythology of the Fuke sect (which did not actually originate until the late 16th or early 17th century)?


His first, last and only formal instruction for me was embodied in one word: observe. -Billy Strayhorn on Duke Ellington

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#7 2008-09-28 15:37:52

marek
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From: Czech Republic
Registered: 2007-03-02
Posts: 189
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Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

Hi,

I've never heard of such a thing as Fuke zen. However, I find it very interesting when you speak of the mind-opening ,) when I play in front of people who basically do not know what to expect... and the sound of koten honkyoku is far from to be expected...
Hic sund leones! Never been here! It's like throwing them into shark infested waters, they don't know what's gonna happen! Some are bewildered, others stand still and try to hold their ground.
That, I think, is one of the great gifts of the traditional shakuhachi music to the western world. However, if, and I'm struggling to, after the shock, you can give them content they will recognize the Art!

I'm sorry for any errors in smoothness of this post... i'm off to party:]

Ciao,

Marek

Last edited by marek (2008-09-28 15:38:45)


In passionate silence, the sound is what I'm after.

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#8 2008-09-28 16:16:03

Priapus Le Zen M☮nk
Historical Zen Mod
From: St-Jerome, Quebec, Canada
Registered: 2006-04-25
Posts: 612
Website

Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

Austin Shadduck wrote:

Gishin, I still don't understand... I'm not really confused about Fuke/Puhua and how his legend was used to give the komuso religious legitimacy. I'm really looking for definitions. Is Fuke sect equivalent to Fuke sh? (Does sh mean "sect" or "school" in Japanese?)

In summary of what was said before, members of the Fuke sect/Fukeshu were known as komuso and practiced what can be called Fuke Zen, which means that they practiced suizen (playing the shakuhachi as a path to enlightenment). One of the tenets of Fuke Zen is ichion jobutsu, or "enlightenment in a single sound." That is not to say that the komuso only played one note, but rather (please correct me if I am wrong) each sound ideally embodied the nature of life itself and could reveal life lessons (such as the understanding that life is as fleeting as a single shakuhachi sound and the impermanence of life is a natural phenomenon to be at peace with).

The tradition of mendicant priests playing shakuhachi as a way of opening their minds can be traced back to at least the early 15th century poetry of Ikky Zenji. Here's where I am unclear. Even if there was not a name for it at the time, were the priests essentially practicing suizen? Does anyone know when the term ichion jobutsu came into being and when it was first used in relation to playing the shakuhachi? What about the term suizen? 

Finally, when I see information about the Fuke sect beginning in the 13th century with Shinchi Kakushin, is that simply part of the mythology of the Fuke sect (which did not actually originate until the late 16th or early 17th century)?

Well to some extant you are confused.

Fuke-shu= Fuke Zen = Fuke sect/School which is a sect made up totally in Japan.

Ichi on Jobutsu= One sound towards enlightenment in Reference to the story of Fuke and his bell. Same thing for other reference to sound like Monshogodo etc. all those expressions came from China originally and are usually connected with the Zen schools..

Yes kakushin is mostly only legend. he was a Shingon priest that went back to China to learn Zen and it was never clearly proved that he had brought any full package/tradition of flute playing. But yes he did play flute as his own THING so we can say he was the originator of the discipline.


Sebastien 義真 Cyr
春風館道場 Shunpukan Dojo
St-Jerome, Quebec, Canada
http://www.myspace.com/shunpukandojo

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#9 2008-09-28 22:19:59

Justin
Shihan/Maker
From: Japan
Registered: 2006-08-12
Posts: 540
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Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

Hi Austin

Austin Shadduck wrote:

Mujitsu, thank you for that suggestion. Maybe the quest for a richer sound coupled with the desire of the ronin shakuhachi-playing priests to separate themselves from the typically lower-class komoso led to changes in shakuhachi design? Interesting stuff.

Komuso were of samurai class. Perhaps their aesthetic was more refined? That might lead to experimentation with root ends from the perspective of beauty, which perhaps might in turn result in finding the instrument better musically. Once that happens it is easy to catch on. That's my guess.

Austin Shadduck wrote:

Gishin, I still don't understand... I'm not really confused about Fuke/Puhua and how his legend was used to give the komuso religious legitimacy. I'm really looking for definitions. Is Fuke sect equivalent to Fuke sh? (Does sh mean "sect" or "school" in Japanese?)

Yes, shu means sect.

Austin Shadduck wrote:

In summary of what was said before, members of the Fuke sect/Fukeshu were known as komuso and practiced what can be called Fuke Zen

Have you ever heard of what they practiced being called Fuke Zen in Japanese sources? I had the feeling that's more the name of the school (Fuke shu, or Fuke Zen shu, and it is part of Zen shu). I would have thought they may be more likely to sy they practice Zen, rather than "Fuke Zen". (But then I have not read the Japanese sources).

Austin Shadduck wrote:

, which means that they practiced suizen

Has anyone heard of any Edo period source which actually says that komuso practiced "suizen"? The only reference to suizen I have heard of is carved in stone outside Meianji temple in Kyoto, and Kurahashi says that they never said they practiced suizen, but that was merely an abbreviation of the saying, found written inside the temple, which says "sui and zen are one". I.e. playing the shakuhachi, and zen, are one. This seems typical of Japanese arts, where one cultivates zen in all actions. Kurahashi said that they took that particular phrase from one about swords, since they were samurai and went from swords to shakuhachi. Something like "The sword and zen are one". Gishin, perhaps you can help with that saying?

Austin Shadduck wrote:

The tradition of mendicant priests playing shakuhachi as a way of opening their minds can be traced back to at least the early 15th century poetry of Ikky Zenji. Here's where I am unclear. Even if there was not a name for it at the time, were the priests essentially practicing suizen?

This may be like asking, if a Hindu yogi 3000 years ago had realisation of truth (zen), if he played the bansuri (Indian flute), was he practicing suizen? We could say "yes" and be right, but it may have no relevance to the history of shakuhachi. The questoin I pose about about the use of the term suizen may lead you in a more informed direction (about what the sources are, and what they say). Please post if you find answers!

Best wishes
Justin
http://senryushakuhachi.com/

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#10 2008-09-29 05:09:24

Kiku Day
Shakuhachi player, teacher and ethnomusicologist
From: London, UK & Nrre Snede, DK
Registered: 2005-10-07
Posts: 922
Website

Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

Hi Austin.

No wonder you are confused. We have all been and perhaps we still all are.... smile The history of shakuhachi is not carved in stone.

Fuke Zen is not a term used in Japan or elsewhere, but I can understand why you say it - like Rinzai Zen. And shu (宗) can mean religion or sect as already mentioned.

According to Japanese shakuhachi researchers such as Tukitani Tuneko and Simura Satosi, the word Suizen is a post-Edo period term and was never used (at least not in written form) until the Meiji Period.


I am a hole in a flute
that the Christ's breath moves through
listen to this music
Hafiz

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#11 2008-09-29 09:21:43

lowonthetotem
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From: Cape Coral, FL
Registered: 2008-04-05
Posts: 529
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Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

The history of shakuhachi is not carved in stone.

Indeed, history as a whole is not carved in stone and is always in a state of revision.  Whether the revision gets us closer to some "truth" about the past is largely an exercise in speculation.  This is evidenced by the largely, if not entirely, fictional accounts that linked the Fuke sect to Fuke himself.  Still, it makes for nice bedtime stories, and where would we be without bedtime stories?

It is my understanding that straight bores leave the higher octaves flat, while tapered bores produce "correct" tuning in the upper octaves.  Still, considering that many of the earlier flutes were made according to more of a visual aesthetic rather than audible tuning (as I've read on this forum), one has to wonder whether this was really a motivating factor.  Does anyone know whether the oldest flutes in Japan (I remember reading that there are 5 from either China or Korea in a temple, some bamboo, one jade, and another of other material) were tapered or root end?


"Turn like a wheel inside a wheel."

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#12 2008-09-29 22:07:05

Austin Shadduck
Member
From: New York, NY
Registered: 2008-09-21
Posts: 38
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Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

Kiku Day wrote:

Fuke Zen is not a term used in Japan or elsewhere, but I can understand why you say it - like Rinzai Zen. And shu (宗) can mean religion or sect as already mentioned.

According to Japanese shakuhachi researchers such as Tukitani Tuneko and Simura Satosi, the word Suizen is a post-Edo period term and was never used (at least not in written form) until the Meiji Period.

Thank you for the clarification, Kiku. The more research I do the more it seems that the Fukeshu was really an entity unto itself, not as tied to or descended from Rinzai Zen as I had originally thought. What does the "Fuke sect" imply as far as lineage? I mean, should I be thinking of "sect" as anything more than a school of thought or a way of life? Or, in this case, does it mean a school of Zen Buddhism?

I just discovered Torsten Olafsson's website. It sounds like his dissertation might shed some light on my questions too.

Justin wrote:

This may be like asking, if a Hindu yogi 3000 years ago had realisation of truth (zen), if he played the bansuri (Indian flute), was he practicing suizen? We could say "yes" and be right, but it may have no relevance to the history of shakuhachi.

True, my question was a bit silly. My line of thought was that if Ikky Zenji or his contemporaries were some of the first noted practitioners of what we now call suizen, then his poetry provides a more solid time frame for the origins of the komuso tradition than the story of Kakushin (since Kakushin seems like an isolated incident). And naturally it's difficult to say what went on in the periods between Kakushin and Ikky . I love it. The whole enigmatic history of shakuhachi playing leaves so much to be unraveled. I don't know of any other instrument with such a rich history!


His first, last and only formal instruction for me was embodied in one word: observe. -Billy Strayhorn on Duke Ellington

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#13 2008-09-30 00:05:43

Justin
Shihan/Maker
From: Japan
Registered: 2006-08-12
Posts: 540
Website

Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

Austin Shadduck wrote:

Thank you for the clarification, Kiku. The more research I do the more it seems that the Fukeshu was really an entity unto itself, not as tied to or descended from Rinzai Zen as I had originally thought. What does the "Fuke sect" imply as far as lineage? I mean, should I be thinking of "sect" as anything more than a school of thought or a way of life? Or, in this case, does it mean a school of Zen Buddhism?

It was a sect of Buddhism with temples, regulations, licenses, main temples and branch temples etc. Proper sect. In terms of lineage, to validate itself it had to pretend it had a lineage. That is, when it created itself, it was new, but had to show it was not new (I think that was when the government in the Edo period made Christianity illegal and made everyone register with a temple etc). So a high up monk advised them to fake their lineage back to China. Perhaps they also wanted to make their system/sect seem authentic to people in general too.

Even today lineage is important in Japan. It is difficult to create anything new, so even today when a new style is created, or when someone has no lineage, they may make one up. Otherwise there is the danger that they will not be accepted. People here often want to know it is "authentic", and lineage "proves" that. I think in the West people are just more concerned as to whether it is good or not.

Austin Shadduck wrote:

Justin wrote:

This may be like asking, if a Hindu yogi 3000 years ago had realisation of truth (zen), if he played the bansuri (Indian flute), was he practicing suizen? We could say "yes" and be right, but it may have no relevance to the history of shakuhachi.

True, my question was a bit silly. My line of thought was that if Ikky Zenji or his contemporaries were some of the first noted practitioners of what we now call suizen, then his poetry provides a more solid time frame for the origins of the komuso tradition than the story of Kakushin (since Kakushin seems like an isolated incident). And naturally it's difficult to say what went on in the periods between Kakushin and Ikky . I love it. The whole enigmatic history of shakuhachi playing leaves so much to be unraveled. I don't know of any other instrument with such a rich history!

You may be doing what they did with creating the Fuke story! Looking back to something they can find to connect to. Even if Ikkyu was doing "suizen", to connect it, you may need to show there was actually a direct connection/influence from that incident to the Fuke sect. That they were doing something similar does not necessarily indicate any direct connection. Not that I want to discourage you. If you find anything interesting, do tell us!

Justin
http://senryushakuhachi.com/

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#14 2008-09-30 03:37:35

Kiku Day
Shakuhachi player, teacher and ethnomusicologist
From: London, UK & Nrre Snede, DK
Registered: 2005-10-07
Posts: 922
Website

Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

lowonthetotem wrote:

Does anyone know whether the oldest flutes in Japan (I remember reading that there are 5 from either China or Korea in a temple, some bamboo, one jade, and another of other material) were tapered or root end?

From memory, the bamboo shakuhachi of Shosoin are not root end (correct me if I remember wrong).
They have 3 nodes (like miyogiri). Even the jade and stone ones have 3 nodes carved. So my guess is that they would not have tapered or reverse conical bores like most Fuke shakuhachi.

I know I have pictures of them somewhere.... but where...? Sigh!

And I agree that it is very possible musical considerations have played a larger role in the change to be using root end for shakuhachi making than the weapon thing. I feel the timbre might have been a key factor too.

Last edited by Kiku Day (2008-09-30 04:11:51)


I am a hole in a flute
that the Christ's breath moves through
listen to this music
Hafiz

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#15 2008-09-30 04:47:57

Justin
Shihan/Maker
From: Japan
Registered: 2006-08-12
Posts: 540
Website

Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

Kiku Day wrote:

They have 3 nodes (like miyogiri). Even the jade and stone ones have 3 nodes carved. So my guess is that they would not have tapered or reverse conical bores like most Fuke shakuhachi.

They mostly seem to have 3 nodes and the utaguchi at or just before where the 4th node would be. That's definitely enough for a taper. Although I have heard it said that there is no direct connection to those gagaku shakuhachi and Fuke shakuhachi, they actually look far closer to Fuke shakuhachi than hitoyogiri are to Fuke shakuhachi, in terms of bamboo proportions of length:width, and in terms of nodal spacing - basically the same except for the missing 3 nodes of the root end.

Take a look:
http://shosoin.kunaicho.go.jp/publictre … 67001.html

http://shosoin.kunaicho.go.jp/publictre … 66001.html

http://shosoin.kunaicho.go.jp/publictre … 92001.html

Justin
http://senryushakuhachi.com/

Last edited by Justin (2008-09-30 04:52:21)

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#16 2008-09-30 22:58:45

Austin Shadduck
Member
From: New York, NY
Registered: 2008-09-21
Posts: 38
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Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

Justin,

This is starting to get off topic, but can you tell me if the shakuhachi at the Shosoin are the oldest surviving shakuhachi?

Last edited by Austin Shadduck (2008-09-30 23:01:12)


His first, last and only formal instruction for me was embodied in one word: observe. -Billy Strayhorn on Duke Ellington

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#17 2008-09-30 23:01:43

Priapus Le Zen M☮nk
Historical Zen Mod
From: St-Jerome, Quebec, Canada
Registered: 2006-04-25
Posts: 612
Website

Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

Austin Shadduck wrote:

Justin,

This is starting to get off topic, but can you tell me if the shakuhachi at the Shosoin are the oldest surviving examples?

Yes the oldest examples of Hitoyogiri are supposed to be the ones at the Shosoin. Same thing goes with swords and other items that are reported to be directly from China.


Sebastien 義真 Cyr
春風館道場 Shunpukan Dojo
St-Jerome, Quebec, Canada
http://www.myspace.com/shunpukandojo

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#18 2008-09-30 23:15:01

Justin
Shihan/Maker
From: Japan
Registered: 2006-08-12
Posts: 540
Website

Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

Gishin wrote:

Austin Shadduck wrote:

Justin,

This is starting to get off topic, but can you tell me if the shakuhachi at the Shosoin are the oldest surviving examples?

Yes the oldest examples of Hitoyogiri are supposed to be the ones at the Shosoin. Same thing goes with swords and other items that are reported to be directly from China.

?? They have hitoyogiri in Shosoin? Do you have any links to pictures?

Austin, as far as I know they are the oldest surviving shakuhachi. Please note, as mentioned before, they are not Fuke shakuhachi but Gagaku shakuhachi. It is not the instrument which we play.

Justin
http://senryushakuhachi.com/

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#19 2008-09-30 23:24:16

Priapus Le Zen M☮nk
Historical Zen Mod
From: St-Jerome, Quebec, Canada
Registered: 2006-04-25
Posts: 612
Website

Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

Justin wrote:

Gishin wrote:

Austin Shadduck wrote:

Justin,

This is starting to get off topic, but can you tell me if the shakuhachi at the Shosoin are the oldest surviving examples?

Yes the oldest examples of Hitoyogiri are supposed to be the ones at the Shosoin. Same thing goes with swords and other items that are reported to be directly from China.

?? They have hitoyogiri in Shosoin? Do you have any links to pictures?

Austin, as far as I know they are the oldest surviving shakuhachi. Please note, as mentioned before, they are not Fuke shakuhachi but Gagaku shakuhachi. It is not the instrument which we play.

Justin
http://senryushakuhachi.com/

As far as what I was told the Shosoin flutes were falling under the Hitoyogiri category.

Last edited by Gishin (2008-09-30 23:24:34)


Sebastien 義真 Cyr
春風館道場 Shunpukan Dojo
St-Jerome, Quebec, Canada
http://www.myspace.com/shunpukandojo

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#20 2008-09-30 23:48:30

Justin
Shihan/Maker
From: Japan
Registered: 2006-08-12
Posts: 540
Website

Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

Gishin wrote:

As far as what I was told the Shosoin flutes were falling under the Hitoyogiri category.

Hi Gishin
The ones which I know of in Shosoin are the ones pictured in the links I posted. They are not hitoyogiri. As far as I know, hitoyogiri are uniquely Japanese. They have only one fushi (hence the name) unlike the 3 (/4?) of the Shosoin shakuhachi. Hitoyogiri also have 5 holes like Fuke shakuhachi, with the same tuning, except fingering becomes different in kan - as opposed to the 6 holes and different tuning of the Shosoin shakuhachi. I believe the Shosoin shakuhachi are Gagaku shakuhachi.

Justin
http://senryushakuhachi.com/

Last edited by Justin (2008-09-30 23:52:23)

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#21 2008-10-01 02:33:19

Kiku Day
Shakuhachi player, teacher and ethnomusicologist
From: London, UK & Nrre Snede, DK
Registered: 2005-10-07
Posts: 922
Website

Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

The Shosoin shakuhachi are the oldest known shakuhachi. There are 8 of them and I think 5 are made of bamboo. They have 6 holes and made to play a totally different kind of music than the Fuke shakuhachi.

Before it was believed that there had been several types of shakuhachi imported from China to Japan: The gagaku shakuhachi and the Fuke shakuhachi, brought over much later by Kakushin and the tempuku. Today I don't know of any researchers who do not believe the gagaku shakuhachi is the direct ancestor of the Fuke shakuhachi. That said... perhaps another evidence is coming up some time in the future. Nothing is carved in stone - as mentioned before.

The reasons for the theory that the Fuke shakuhachi is a flute that developed out of gagaku shakuhachi is:
The mentioning of shakuhachi in Chinese historical documents ceased centuries before it was believed the Fuke shakuhachi was brought over to Japan. Scholars therefore believed this type of shakuhachi was extinct in China at the time.
The shakuhachi is unique in the world of having an outward oblique mouthpiece. I think it only shares it with a type of xiao only played in Taiwan. Because the gagaku shakuhachi and Fuke shakuhachi share this shape mouthpiece, it is believed they are directly linked.
In a historical document, I believe from the 13-14th century or so, it is mentioned that sarugaku people (entertainment at markets etc) were playing a short shakuhachi called hitoyogiri (sorry, I have my head full of documents that I can't use time to find which one it is if not directly linked to my own project). So, it is here clear that the instrument imported from China (which was called shakuhachi) and the hitoyogiri was believed to be linked in this document. The name shakuhachi has followed the instrument from the gagaku instrument.

So, to follow the thread discussed here:

The Shosoin shakuhachi are not hitoyogiri quite yet. The gagaku shakuhachi had been out of use in the gagaku ensemble for a century or two when hitoyogiri is mentioned first time.

Justin, you are right. I should have written that the 3 node gagaku shakuhachi may not have as much tapering instead of no tapering. I have forgot which way the gagaku shakuhachi's bamboo is turned. It is known that some flutes around the world made from bamboo are constructed so that the end closest to the root is the mouthpiece (the root end like on a shakuhachi is not used, of course). I also have measurements of the gagaku shakuhachi somewhere. I will post it when I find it.


I am a hole in a flute
that the Christ's breath moves through
listen to this music
Hafiz

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#22 2008-10-01 03:23:53

Justin
Shihan/Maker
From: Japan
Registered: 2006-08-12
Posts: 540
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Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

Kiku Day wrote:

Justin, you are right. I should have written that the 3 node gagaku shakuhachi may not have as much tapering instead of no tapering. I have forgot which way the gagaku shakuhachi's bamboo is turned. It is known that some flutes around the world made from bamboo are constructed so that the end closest to the root is the mouthpiece (the root end like on a shakuhachi is not used, of course). I also have measurements of the gagaku shakuhachi somewhere. I will post it when I find it.

Hi Kiku
The ones I posted links to look to me to be made with the bamboo in the same direction as Fuke shakuhachi, and thus having the same direction of taper. It also looks to me that the bamboo was taken from near the base, i.e. not far from the root end. The taper should therefore be significant and I would suggest perhaps not very dissimilar to the taper of Fuke shakuhachi. This was probably a musical choice. Since they were playing in ensemble with other instruments, it in fact makes sense that they would need to keep in tune with the others in both octaves and therefore a taper is desirable.

Kiku Day wrote:

Today I don't know of any researchers who do not believe the gagaku shakuhachi is the direct ancestor of the Fuke shakuhachi. That said... perhaps another evidence is coming up some time in the future. Nothing is carved in stone - as mentioned before.
[...]

The Shosoin shakuhachi are not hitoyogiri quite yet. The gagaku shakuhachi had been out of use in the gagaku ensemble for a century or two when hitoyogiri is mentioned first time.

Kiku (or anyone else), could you tell us the history line - was it
1) Gagaku shakuhachi developed into
2) Miyogiri developed into
3) Hitoyogiri developed into
4) Fuke shakuhachi

Or was it
1) Gagaku shakuhachi developed into
2) Miyogiri AND Hitoyogiri
3) Fuke shakuhachi developed from Miyogiri

Or even
1) Gagaku shakuhachi developed into
2) Hitoyogiri developed into
3) Miyogiri developed into
4) Fuke shakuhachi
(This would seem a little strange as Miyogiri and Gagaku shakuhachi seem closer to each other than hitoyogiri and Gagaku shakuhachi - but, could have been this way. Anyone know?)

??

Justin
http://senryushakuhachi.com/

Last edited by Justin (2008-10-01 03:29:45)

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#23 2008-10-01 08:55:12

Daniel Ryudo
Shihan/Kinko Ryu
From: Kochi, Japan
Registered: 2006-02-12
Posts: 355

Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

Hi Kiku.  In Koma no Chikazane's book Kyokunsho (1233) Chikazane refers to the shakuhachi accompanying sarugaku as tanteki ('short flute').    At that time the shakuhachi was being played by mekura hoshi (blind priests), and it's one of the first references we have to shakuhachi being played by classes other than nobility.  (I only remember this obscure information as I just gave a lecture on shakuhachi at GSU in Atlanta last week and was talking a little about its history).  The first graphic representation we have of a five hole shakuhachi is in a music encyclopedia called Taigensho which was written in 1512.

Last edited by Daniel Ryudo (2008-10-01 08:59:13)

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#24 2008-10-01 09:48:59

Justin
Shihan/Maker
From: Japan
Registered: 2006-08-12
Posts: 540
Website

Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

Hi Daniel
Do you have any link to that (1512) picture?

Thanks

Justin
http://senryushakuhachi.com/

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#25 2008-10-01 11:03:23

Daniel Ryudo
Shihan/Kinko Ryu
From: Kochi, Japan
Registered: 2006-02-12
Posts: 355

Re: Fuke Zen --> Fukeshu

Hi Justin.  It was listed in Riley Lee's dissertation Yearning for the Bell and the sketch showed a drawing of a five hole shakuhachi but only showed one node; the sketch didn't show the bottom of the bamboo.  According to Lee's dissertation, there are seven sketches of the instrument in Taigensho so I guess if you could get hold of that original source you could have a look at the other sketches.  Maybe Kiku would know where that is located.  Another interesting bit of information; according to Lee, there are five different lengths of shakuhachi illustrated in the Taigensho; so I guess they were making various lengths of shakuhachi even back in the old days.

Last edited by Daniel Ryudo (2008-10-01 11:15:28)

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