This is the Japanese art of throwing and concealing the shuriken (throwing blade; see p. 223). Contrary to popular perception, shuriken weren't merely "ninja throwing stars." Samurai valued them as backup weapons, because they were easy to conceal and quick to deploy. Some shuriken (especially single-pointed spikes) functioned as fist loads, too, making them useful last-ditch melee weapons. Shurikenjutsu was usually a "hidden" or "secret" part of a ryu, because the shuriken was most effective when the enemy wasn't expecting it.


Sojutsu (pp. 197-198) is but one of the world's many spear arts. The spear is a very simple weapon that has seen extensive use in warfare, hunting, and personal combat since before recorded history. It survives today as the bayonet, taught by modern armies as much to instill aggressiveness in recruits as for combat utility.

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