The classic text on the mystical traditions of the ninja now decoded in English
• The path of the ninja as an authentic spiritual discipline
• Details the art of concealment and espionage, including methods of disguise, survival techniques, and face reading
• A ninja response to the Samurai Bushido and the way to mind-body harmony
Experts in disguise, infiltration, espionage, and counterintelligence, the ninja had spiritual values and magical traditions that distinguished them from the soldierlike samurai. Their art of ninjutsu, invisible as well as indispensable, was transmitted in secret schools and relied on only a few books, which were written in code.
The Shoninki, one of the most important of these coded manuals, was written in 1681 by Master Ninja Natori Masazumi. Presenting all facets of the art of concealment, espionage, and physical prowess, including methods of disguise and survival techniques, this source text also contains teachings on spiritual meditations, psychic powers, the art of face reading, controlling the emotions, and magic spells. Revealing the connection between the ninja and the yamabushi--warrior monks who were endowed with supernatural powers--this classic text confirms the path of the ninja as an authentic spiritual discipline, one of self-realization and detachment and the way to mind-body harmony.
Foreword by Bernard Bordas Introduction: The Cultural and Philosophical Context of the Shoninki by Axel Mazuer Part One Shoninki Jo: Introduction to the Shoninki Foreword by Katsuda 1 The Authentic Ninja Tradition of Our School (toryu shoninki) 2 The Different Types of Spies (shinobi no tsuwamono no shina) 3 The Supreme Principles of the Art of Shinobi (ichiryu no shidai) Part Two Shoninki Shokan: First Scroll of the Shoninki 1 Preparing Yourself for Clandestine Activities (shinobi detachi jno narai) 2 Necessary Knowledge about Unknown Mountain Paths (shiranu sanro no narai) 3 Traveling by Foot at Night (yomichi no koto) 4 Entering Enemy Houses (kinjuku tori hairu narai) 5 The Teachings of Wolves and Foxes (koro no michi no narai) 6 The Teachings of Oxen and Horses (gyuba no tsutae no koto) 7 Gathering Information in Temples and Sanctuaries (guji keimon no narai) 8 Discussion on Changes in Appearance (henge no ron) 9 Infiltrating Armed Troops(jinchu shinobu toki no narai) 10 Meditations on Water Birds (mizudori no kangae) 11 The Opportune Moments for Infiltration (shinobi hairu jibun no koto) 12 The Teachings of the Quadrupeds (yo ashai no narai) 13 The Task of Two Shinobi Working Together (futari shinobi no koto) 14 The Task of Three Shinobi Working Together (sannin shinobi no koto) Part Three Shoninki Chukan: Middle Scroll of the Shoninki 1 The Doctrine of the Course of Earth and Heaven (tendo chido no narai) 2 Attaining Elevated Areas and the Depths (taka koe hikiki ni hairu no narai) 3 Enlarging Your View Angle During Espionage (shinobi ni iro o kaeru to iu narai) 4 Protecting Yourself against the Enemy (teku fusegi to iu narai) 5 Secret Teachings for Sowing Dismay in Assassins (dainin ni nerawarezaru mitshuho no mamori) 6 Wisely Using the Shadows Cast by Trees (kikage no daiji) 7 Leaving a Trail of False Clues Behind (koto o magirakasu no narai) 8 The Art of Bringing True Intentions to Light (hito ni ri o tsukusa suru narai no koto) 9 Recognizing an Individual's Character (ninso o shiru koto) 10 The Three Zones of the Human Body (mottai ni santei aru koto) Part Four Shoninki Gekan: Final Scroll of the Shoninki 1 The Most Secret Principles (goku hidden) 2 The "Gateless Barrier" (mumon no isseki) 3 The Art of Not Breaking Individuals (hito o yaburazaru no narai) 4 The Emotional States (shinso no koto) 5 Knowing How to Tell the Difference Between Knowledge and Principle (dori to riko to shirubeki koto) 6 Controlling Your Heart and Attaining the Principle (kokoro no osame ri ni ateru koto) 7 The Art of Free Conversations (mukei benzetsu) 8 Knowing How to Let Go (rijutsuho) Shoninki Okusho: Afterword to the Shoninki by Natori Heisaemon Index