Information
 
Who We Are


The Florida Kyudo Kai is a non-profit organization dedicated to the promotion, study and practice of Kyudo in Florida.

The Florida Kyudo Kai (FKK) is an affiliate organization of the South Carolina Renmei (SCR). The SCR is a charter member of the American Kyudo Renmei (AKR) who operates under the auspices and authority of the All Japan Kyudo Federation (Zen Nihon Kyudo Renmei (ZNKR) and the International Kyudo Federation (Kokusai Kyudo Renmei (IKYF).

Florida Kyudo Kai logo (mon)

Symbols are a means of bringing subtle, inner realities to a focus in outward expression. . There are two aspects to the FKK logo: The Three Five-pedal Sakura (Cherry) Blossom and the Ya (arrow) House.

 

 The Three Five – Petal Sakura (Cherry) Blossom

Cherry blossoms are seen to possess natural beauty and grace. The word 'beauty' does not refer simply to the appearance of the flower; it captures the sense of dignity and strength contained within something so fragile and fleeting; like the flight of the arrow after its release from the bow. 'Grace' is a word seldom considered in our times. It can mean a variety of things: compassion, kindness, goodwill, elegance and beauty of movement. The cherry tree is also known as majestic symbol of education.

The five petals represent the five archers of the sharei( formal ceremonial shooting) seeking the Sanmi-Ittai, (the stability and unity of the three essentials [the three blossoms coming from one branch], Body, Spirit, and Bow as one body). By seeking these qualities, the archers will realize the ‘Five Virtues’. These virtues are the Confucian virtues of Benevolence, Justice, Courtesy, Wisdom and Sincerity. 

The Ya House

In the past, a few nations of the Native American woodland Indians lived in log cabin type buildings called ‘longhouses’. The buildings were not very wide, 16 to 23ft; the lengths of the buildings were up to 330ft long. Multiple generations and families (clans) lived there in these dwellings, and there were multiple longhouses in a village. This fostered, among other things, community, interconnectedness, and the younger generations were able to learn and live the wisdom of the elders.

The Kyudo-jo is not very wide but it is long like the longhouses. We too foster community and the wisdom of Kyudo here in Florida, via dojo’s throughout Florida.   

 So, in this way, the spirit of the longhouse is incorporated into the Florida Kyudo Kai logo as the ‘Ya House’.

 

 *With one end of the bow
the shooter touches the heaven
with the other the earth

Stretched between both the string shoots
the arrow into the heart of the target
the visible as well as the invisible

Kyudo is therefore – expressed in the shortest possible formula -
the attempt to achieve the idea of “tao” by practicing the art of archery

 *Noted on the Gako-kyudojo web site   

 

 

 

Our Kyudo Lineage


Prior to the establishment of the All Japan Kyudo Federation (Zen Nihon Kyudo Renmei or ZNKR) in 1948, the Way of the Japanese Bow was taught by a number of great masters in their individual schools. This resulted in a variety of shooting styles.


Most historical Kyudo schools emphasized shooting skill as well as ceremony. However, as years passed, schools such as the Ogasawara, Heki, and Honda tradition became more involved with the Imperial court and their emphasis on ceremonial form expanded. Early on, the teachings of each school were closely guarded. However, as peace prevailed each school began to recognize value in the teachings of other schools and there was a gradual merging of some of the teaching points.

Also, the unique design of the Japanese bow requires a particular way of gripping it, and a particular way of drawing the string and releasing the arrow for the bow to perform as intended. These factors help define the meaning of ‘correct’ Kyudo and generate a lot of common practices among the various schools.

With the inauguration of the ZNKR, the underlying principles of proper shooting were codified and a common style for ceremonial movement was developed. This common style was not intended to replace the practices of traditional schools, but rather to allow members of different schools to shoot together in a harmonious way. So today, Kyudo retains a number of the traditional schools, but also includes a standard form.

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Florida Kyudo Kai - Instructors

The Florida Kyudo Kai has no certified instructors. But, with the great assistance of the below certified instructors and senior kyudoka (through local training, regional and national seminars) we greatly gain knowledge and training in Kyudo.  

 

 

Aaron Blackwell, Rokudan Kyoshi (6th Dan)

 

Blackwell sensei has over 30 years experience in Kyudo. He is President of the South Carolina Renmei (SCKR) and is the highest ranked Kyudoka in the Americas.   www.sckyudo.com/

 

Ed Symmes, Godan Renshi (5th Dan)


Symmes sensei is President of the Bi Toku Kyudo Dojo (Atlanta, GA). He has over 25 years of Kyudo experience. www.bitokukyudo.org/

For more information contact: Ron Jones Redleaves@cox.net
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