The Christian Roots of Danzan Ryu

The photo above with Hachiro and Prof. “E” was taken in Hachiro Okazaki’s kitchen where he informed the Okazaki Biographical Research Team in 1978 that his dad was a Christian.

Seishiro Okazaki was raised in the Buddhist and Shinto tradition. He was a seeker after God and based upon the historical record he attempted to be faithful to his Buddhist and Shinto roots. However in the late 1930’s he was introduced to Christianity and became a convinced and convicted Christian. Prof. Estes told us that Master Okazaki attended both the Congregational and Methodist churches in Hawaii. At that time both were strongly Bible based churches. In 1978 during our visit to Hawaii to research Okazaki’s life, we spent a great deal of time interviewing his eldest son, Hachiro. Hachiro made it abundantly clear that his dad was a Christian and Hachiro was quite proud of that fact. Shortly thereafter when Lora and I interviewed Esther Takamoto, Okazaki’s daughter, she informed us that her dad faithfully attended church on Sundays, carrying his Bible under his arm.

Furthermore many of the early founders of Danzan Ryu who came to the mainland were also unabashed Christians including Prof.Estes, Prof. Law, and Prof. Rickerts. Prof. Estes often referred to Bible lessons in Black Belt classes. Prof. Law also taught from the Bible according to his students. Looking at the old AJ&JF convention programs you will observe that there were (Christian) prayers offered: invocation, blessing, and benediction. Prof. Estes often brought his Baptist pastor to offer these, and when none was present, he did the honors himself.

Danzan Ryu is infused with many lessons and teachings from the Holy Bible.

Prof. Edwards