Mumon (無門) means No Gate
We are open to all students interested in the pursuit for the art.
Mumon is dedicated to teaching authentic karate
Mumon is dedicated to the student, not the profit
Mumon is designed to teach mastery, and enlighten the student, not limit and control progress
Why? Much of what is taught today is misinterpreted from the original teachings. The misunderstandings have perpetuated to such a large of a degree, that karate instruction is referred to as a lost art, when it is not.
The Karate being taught today often doesn't resemble that which Mr. Honda learned at Waseda from the Funakoshi line of Mr. Shibuya, Mr. Egami, Mr. Okuyama, and others.
Although every practitioner has the right to his/her interpretation, it is clear that many inaccuracies being taught today are having a seriously compromising effect on its quality and effectiveness.
Our goal with Mumon is for students to learn this more accurate and authentic karate, not for entertainment or sport karate, but true and effective karate - budo karate.
Many Karate practitioners today follow Kyohan. Master Funakoshi was reticent to write the text because he knew static images and the written word would severely limit the transfer of knowledge. Because of the ordinal nature of the text, the progression to advanced techniques is addressed at the end of the text.
However learning advanced techniques such as nage no waza requires an understanding of entering and exiting, falling and rolling prior. Learning these techniques at a later age can be dangerous. This along with the understanding of Master Funakoshi's Cardinal rules and how they apply to the nage's borrowed from Master Ueshiba's Aikido are important to proper execution of the techniques.
Many practitioners today, even those of some accomplishment, have not and are not being taught these basics, and therefore it becomes life threatening to practice nage no waza not, because of its effectiveness but because it is done with insufficient training and improper technique. Why does a young aikido student know the basics of nage no waza, while a black belt in karate doesn't?
Mumon has the experience, knowledge, and depth to teach students the full compliment of karate as it applies to aptitude, age, and the students life cycle.
Mumon's instructors average 45 years of practice experience, but does that mean that years of practice makes for a better karate. Many Karateka today have been put into a system where rank is driven by the number of years one practices. So the older you are the higher rank you are.
For a majority, the more you pay and the longer you stick with it, the better the rank. Under that system, Master Funakoshi may not have been a master. Under that system, Waseda would not be able to graduate sandans by age 20. There is absolute merit in wanting to control quality, but it is not a function of time alone.
Karate is based on mastery not number of special trainings, whom you know, or how much you donate, but on true mastery. Although there are physical and mental differences between youths and adults, progress should not be gated by how much you pay or how many years you put in, but that time and dedication to required to demonstrate mastery.
In some systems where ten years per dan = 50 years from shodan to godan. Seems like a long time to master and a lost opportunity to recognize ones mastery. Why are Japanese becoming higher ranked faster than Amercian's and peoples from others countries? Are they truly better than us?
There is no justification in holding a student back from their potential. It is vital to get the exposure and instruction from instructors whom are willing and able to teach the techniques and lessons for mastery at the pace of the student.
Mumon is focused on the student and at any age teaches Karate that provides the value the student seeks, whether it is self-defense, wellness, or a deeper understanding of Budo.
Your instructor is important. Its not just a rank, but a knowledge and commitment to teaching someone to master karate. To become equal or better than the instructor. Our instructors are not just high ranking, but required to prove their ability to instruct. The right to instruct is earned and approved by other instructors.
Mumon is for everyone, including those whom are just starting karate, and for those looking to progress to a higher rank whom seek more instruction, those whom have stagnated with their current organization, and those seeking to explore the real depth of budo beyond rank.
Budo is karate as a way of life. Karate that infiltrates every aspect of ones life in pursuit of mastery. This karate is sophisticated and goes beyond belts and points, but addresses mastery at a level that transcends style. Truely authentic karate that is lethal and controlled, and doesn't seek submission.
Competitive Karate where Karateka are judged in specific aspects of karate such as kumite (sparring), kata (form), and kihon (techniques)
Often arranged in tournaments, and can be good for developing the karateka, but limited in its scope for safety reasons.
Karate that is done for show. This form maybe very fancy and fun, but can be dangerous if used for true self-defense as techniques are modified for show and not for effectiveness.