History[change | edit source]
A Japanese with the name Nakano Michiomi - he later changed his name to So Doshin - incorporates his martial art school into his Buddhist teachings. So Doshin said, that he taught martial arts mostly in order to attract young people to Buddhism. Religious societies didn't pay the taxes, and So Doshin probably considered it, too. Until 1972, So Doshin said that he was the 21st grand master of an esoteric northern Shaolin system called Iher Man Thuen. In 1972 he changed his mind because the Japanese court gave an official decision that his style was not Chinese, but a mixture of karate (perhaps Wado-ryu) and jujutsu (perhaps Hakko-ryu). Consequently, the style's name was changed from "Shorinji Kempo," meaning "kung fu of Shaolin Temple," to "Nippon Shorinji Kempo," meaning "Japanese Way of Fist of Shaolin." The students of Nippon Shorinji Kempo have signs of manji on their kimonos, but it is not treated as the symbol of fascism, it signifies happiness in Buddhism.