Grand Master Gerard Durant
Goshin Jutsu Kyu Jujo
A Brief History of Master Durant
Gerard Durant, who passed away in 1991, is credited with bringing Goshin Jutsu to the United States after W.W.II. Master Durant received his Dan Ranking in the 1930s at the Osaka Kodakan. His registration number in Karate was twelve. He resided in Osaka fourteen years where he attained Dan rankings in Aiki Jutsu, Kobudo, Aiki-Do, as well as Judo. Durant studied with Murakami, a Samurai prince and Aiki Jutsu master who is credited with systematizing Okinawan and Chinese empty hand forms. Master Durant also studied with the Tanaka family as well as the Kunibas (Goshin Budo). Nominated by Ballargeon and appointed by Kuniba, Master Durant was the first North East Representative of Seishin Kai, with the title of Renshi, and the rank of 5th Dan (1958-59). In 1974, after the death of his last teacher, with the approval of the Okinawan Karate Federation, seventy American Black Belts nominated Master Durant for tenth Dan, Soke, above rank, making him the first American recognized as a Grand Master by a legitimate Martial Arts Federation. (Much of this information was taken from the now defunct No Toro Dojo Home Page).
My Association with Kyoto (or Sosho as he is now called)
In 1974, while a student of Dick and Ginny Knapil at the Chagrin Valley Academy of Self Defense in Cleveland, OH, our Dojo was introduced to Master Durant by Sensei Bob Bohach of Youngstown, OH. Kyoto means "teacher of teachers", and Master Durant was a teacher of many Senseis. He took us into his organization, Goshin Jutsu Kyu Jujo (School Where the Body Arts Are Defended), and taught us Goshin Jutsu Karate. Because we studied Jiu-Jutsu and knew how to fall and roll, he also taught us the techniques of Aiki-Jutsu. Kyoto said he was glad he finally had the opportunity to teach these techniques that he had learned in Japan over twenty years before. This tradition of Aiki-Jutsu is now kept alive by many instructors including Hanshi William Cavalier in Rochester, NY, Kyoto's son Dai-Soke Matthew Durant in Plymouth, PA, Shihan Tim Hillman in Auburn, NY, and Master Bob Fields in Cleveland, OH.
Hanshi Wm. Cavalier Introducing Dai-Soke Matthew Durant as
Head of the Goshin System - April 2000
Master Durant only worked with us for a few years, but in that time we were able to learn many exceptional Aiki Jutsu techniques and Kata that are still performed today. The Sai Kata on my Picture Page, Unoko Mi Sai, was shown to us in one afternoon in the Dojo Honbu in Erie, PA., and I have been doing it now for over twenty years. The Dojo Honbu (Organization Headquarters School), was a story in itself. It consisted of the 2nd floor of the Polish Falcon Hall 123. All wood floors, one or two roll out mats, a mirror on the wall, a heavy bag in the corner, a picture of "The Ten Bulls", and a picture of Master Ueshiba on the wall. And, of course, sweat and hard work.
Goshin Jutsu Creed
I will keep my body and mind strong and clean.
I will use them to the best of my ability.
I will pity the weak and show them the way.
I will honor my instructors and fellow students and bring them no shame.
I will study hard so that I will bring nothing but honor to my school.
I come to you with karate empty hands.
I have no weapons, but should I be forced to defend myself,
My principals or my honor:
Should it be a matter of life or death, right or wrong,
Then here are my weapons, "Karate Empty Hands".
Karate Ni Santi Nashi - In Karate there is no first attack.
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Auburn Karate Studio
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Last Updated February 19, 2007