1053 San Pablo Avenue
e-mail inquires are welcome, but phone calls tend to receive the fastest response
visits by appointment only
Serving the San Francisco East Bay Area, including the communities of Albany, Berkeley, El Cerrito, Kensington, Oakland, and Richmond
Although H. E. Davey Sensei founded the Sennin Foundation Center for Japanese Cultural Arts, its ongoing growth is due to the heartfelt efforts of a number of people. Without dedicated students, no dojo ("training hall") can function, and without the equally dedicated teaching staff at the Sennin Foundation Center, our students would not be able to practice. In this sense, our dojo is the result of the ongoing labor of a number of sincere and hardworking individuals. Moreover, since several arts we teach have a lengthy history in Japan, we focus not only on our Director, but also on the men and women in the past whose contributions to these ways have made our own study possible. In short, we try to place what we teach in an appropriate historical context, rather than exclusively emphasizing our present teaching staff.
Below you'll find information, in order of seniority, about the currently active teachers at the Sennin Foundation Center. A number of other Sennin Foundation instructors have contributed greatly to the development of our dojo, but due to space constraints, we're only able to mention those individuals who are presently active teachers. While we don't have space to list all Sennin Foundation-certified instructors, the efforts of these women and men are not forgotten.
Hashimoto Sensei is a retired professor of political science for International Christian University in Japan. He attended Duke University from 1954 to 1958 for graduate studies, and he was a visiting professor for the Japanese Studies Program at De La Salle University in 1985.
In addition to his position on the Sennin Foundation, Inc. Board of Advisors, he is the Senior Advisor to the Sennin Foundation Center for Japanese Cultural Arts and the teacher of H. E. Davey Sensei. While Hashimoto Sensei does occasionally instruct classes at Tempu-Kai in Tokyo, aside from his personal instruction of Mr. Davey, he is largely retired from active teaching.
Like many college students, Sawai Sensei was filled with dreams, aspirations, and ambitions, only to fall seriously ill. Despite the efforts of many doctors, he could not find a cure for his sickness. Filled with despair, he stopped going to university classes.
Thinking that his illness might eventually result in his death, Sawai Sensei read books on Buddhism and Christianity to attempt to discover what will become of a human being after he or she dies. He thought constantly about the purpose of life, and he reached a conclusion that amounted to nihilism. In short, Sawai Sensei felt that there was no such purpose of life, in that we are born without the knowledge of where we came from, where we are going, and why we are here. He felt completely lost.Sawai Sensei's aunt advised him to attend the lectures of Nakamura Tempu Sensei, the founder of Shin-shin-toitsu-do. Sawai Sensei listened to one of his lectures, and he was fortunate enough to meet him. He began to study with Tempu Sensei at that time, and he felt awakened by the universal truths that he taught. More than this, he felt revived. It was in the spring of 1958.
In a short time, after beginning to practice Japanese yoga, Sawai Sensei's health completely recovered. Sawai Sensei continued learning the philosophy of mind and body unification from Tempu Sensei for 11 years until he passed away in 1968.
In addition to regular training sessions in Japanese yoga, every summer for 11 years Sawai Sensei participated in a special multiple-day intensive summer training session, where he received Tempu Sensei's teachings. Three years after joining Tempu-kai ("The Tempu Society"), he was chosen as an Assistant Teacher, or Hodo, to Nakamura Tempu Sensei. He still considered himself to be just a student of Japanese yoga, but he was also asked to contribute to the Tempu-kai magazine, Shirube.
Eventually, Sawai Sensei began to write poems inspired by Tempu Sensei's teachings, teachings that acted as a catalyst for a wide variety of artistic expressions by his students. His first collection of poetry, Seishun no Ma (Devils of Adolescence), was published in 1967. In it, he reflected on the insights he experienced when he overcame the "devilish" sufferings of his adolescence.
The collection was highly praised in various newspapers in Japan by Kuroda Saburo, the chairman of Japanese Modern Poets Association (Nihon Gendai Shijin Kai), and Sawai Sensei received a letter from Tempu Sensei, who praised his poems and tried to encourage him: "...Something beautiful from the poet's mind seems to stream into my mind. I will read your poems again and again."
The next year his teacher Nakamura Tempu Sensei passed away. Even after his death, Sawai Sensei continued to practice Japanese yoga, or Shin-shin-toitsu-do. He presently practices every day as Tempu Sensei personally taught him.
Sawai Sensei eventually became a full Lecturer for the Tempu-kai, which is the highest teaching credential issued by this group. He became a Councilor for Tempu-kai and Tempu-kai Branch Manager of Kyoto in 1998. In 1999, he became Director of Publishing for Tempu-kai and Editor of their magazine, Tempu. He also wrote regular articles for this publication.
Professionally, Sawai Sensei was a full professor of English at Kyoto Sangyo University for 23 years, and he taught at the university for 33 years. He entered semi-retirement and became Professor Emeritus of English in March 2004. He has also had the following books published:
Devils of Adolescence (poetry collection), 1967
The Mirror (poetry collection), 1973
The Collected Poems of Theodore Roethke (translation), 1984
British Colonization of New Zealand (collected research essays), 2003
In the summer of 2004, Sawai Sensei accepted a position as a special Senior Advisor to the Sennin Foundation Center for Japanese Cultural Arts, which is a dojo lead by H. E. Davey Sensei, a fellow Tempu-kai member as well as Sawai Sensei's friend and colleague in Shin-shin-toitsu-do. Since the beginning of 2004, Sawai Atsuhiro Sensei has been contributing short articles to the Sennin Foundation Newsletter, visiting the Sennin Foundation Center, and helping Davey Sensei with his work on a new book tentatively titled The Teachings of Tempu.
H. E. Davey
Mr. Davey has also received comprehensive instruction in Nakamura Sensei's methods of healing with Ki ("Life Energy") and bodywork, which he teaches as well. Davey Sensei's emphasis is on yuki, or the "transference of Ki," as a way of aiding recovery from illness or injury.
In addition, Davey Sensei has studied shodo, or Japanese brush writing/ink painting, under Kobara Ranseki Sensei of Kyoto. Kobara Sensei, the Shihan ("Headmaster") of Ranseki Ryu shodo, is also the Vice President of the Kokusai Shodo Bunka Koryu Kyokai, an international shodo association headquartered in Urayasu. Mr. Davey holds the highest rank in Ranseki Ryu and exhibits his artwork annually in Japan. He has received numerous awards in these international exhibitions, including Jun Taisho, or the "Associate Grand Prize."
H. E. Davey Sensei's involvement in Japanese cultural arts started during his childhood. He began studying the martial art of aiki-jujutsu at the age of five under his late father, who had trained in Japan, and who held instructor certification from more than one Japanese martial arts association. Mr. Davey has also studied the martial arts extensively in both the U.S. and Japan. Davey Sensei presently is the highest-ranking American in the Kokusai Budoin's Nihon Jujutsu and Kobudo Divisions. He has received the rank/title of Kyoshi from the Kokusai Budoin, a worldwide martial arts federation sponsored by Japan's Imperial Family.
Davey Sensei's articles on Japanese arts and his calligraphy, have appeared in such magazines as Karate Kung-Fu Illustrated, Furyu-The Budo Journal of Classical Japanese Martial Arts and Culture, The Journal of Asian Martial Arts, Body Mind Spirit, and Yoga Journal. His artwork and writings have been printed in Japanese publications such as Hokubei Mainichi, Nichibei Times, and Gendo. He is also the author of Unlocking the Secrets of Aiki-jujutsu (Masters Press), Brush Meditation: A Japanese Way to Mind & Body Harmony (Stone Bridge Press), The Japanese Way of the Flower: Ikebana as Moving Meditation (Stone Bridge Press), Japanese Yoga: The Way of Dynamic Meditation (Michi Publishing), and Living the Japanese Arts & Ways: 45 Paths to Meditation & Beauty (Stone Bridge Press). Brush Meditation was one of the top ten best-selling Stone Bridge Press books in 1999.
In 2003, Spirituality & Health magazine presented Davey Sensei with its Book of the Year award for Living the Japanese Arts & Ways: 45 Paths to Meditation & Beauty. Also in 2003, the same book was one of ForeWord magazine's top five books and a finalist for their Book of the Year award.
H. E. Davey Sensei is the President of the Sennin Foundation, Inc. and the editor of Michi Online: Journal of Japanese Cultural Arts (www.michionline.org). He is also the Director of the Sennin Foundation Center for Japanese Cultural Arts.
However, her actual involvement in the Japanese cultural arts started in 1982 with an in-depth study of Japanese yoga, which she began at the Sennin Foundation Center for Japanese Cultural Arts. She holds a Shihan-Dai, or "Associate Instructor," certificate in the Shin-shin-toitsu-do system of Japanese yoga, and she teaches regular classes in this art at our dojo.
Shortly after Kameoka Sensei began practicing Japanese yoga, she also started to seriously study Japanese healing arts at the Sennin Foundation Center as well. She now holds Shihan-Dai teaching certification in these skills as well, and offers ongoing instruction in our healing arts program.
In 1988, Ann Kameoka began an intensive study of Ikenobo kado (flower arrangement) under Fukuyama Suiho Sensei. She currently practices with Ikeda Shuji Sensei. Ms. Kameoka is in charge of our Japanese flower arrangement classes.
She is, additionally, a member of the Board of Advisors for the Sennin Foundation, Inc. and Michi Online: Journal of Japanese Cultural Arts. With Mr. Davey, she is the co-author of The Japanese Way of the Flower: Ikebana as Moving Meditation (Stone Bridge Press).
Mr. Heard has obtained Shihan ("Professor" or "Instructor") teaching licenses in Shin-shin-toitsu-do, a form of Japanese yoga, as well as healing arts based on yuki, or "transference of Ki." He teaches classes in these disciplines at our dojo each week.
Heard Sensei also holds the rank of menkyo chudan (a traditional teaching license roughly equivalent to fourth through sixth-degree black belt in modern ranking systems) in Saigo Ryu aiki-jujutsu. Heard Sensei has received teaching licenses from the Nihon Jujutsu and Kobudo divisions of the Kokusai Budoin, an elite international martial arts federation headquartered in Tokyo. He has demonstrated aiki-jujutsu several times at the Kokusai Budoin Sogo Budo Taikai, held annually in Tokyo. Heard Sensei is also on the Board of Advisors of the Shudokan Martial Arts Association.
In addition to teaching beginning and advanced martial arts classes at our dojo, Mr. Heard helps teach in our program for children, where he offers instruction in both Japanese yoga and martial arts. He has extensive experience working with young people, and he began assisting with our classes for kids in the mid-80s.
Mr. Heard earned bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of California at Berkeley. After working in the software development industry, he returned to the University to become Director of Computing and Information Services for UCB's School of Information. His professional interests include UNIX/Linux system administration, building information systems based on open standards, and open source software. He is also interested in issues of security, privacy, and personal freedom in the digital age. He is co-author of Mastering Netscape SuiteSpot 3 Servers (Sybex).
Mr. Heard currently lives in Richmond, California with his wife, Patricia, who also holds Sennin Foundation instructor certification in Japanese yoga, healing arts, and martial arts.
In 1990, he began to study Japanese yoga and the martial art of aiki-jujutsu at the Sennin Foundation Center for Japanese Cultural Arts. He has currently received Shihan-Dai ("Associate Instructor") teaching certification in Shin-shin-toitsu-do (Japanese yoga). Mr. Ohsaki presently serves as an assistant instructor of Japanese yoga at our dojo as well.
He has also received a menkyo shodan teaching license in aiki-jujutsu, which is roughly equal to first to third-degree black belt, and he is a certified black belt in the Kobudo Division of Tokyo's Kokusai Budoin. Ohsaki Sensei teaches regular martial arts classes at our dojo. He also serves on the Board of Advisors for the Shudokan Martial Arts Association.
Shortly after he commenced training in Japanese yoga and aiki-jujutsu, he also began to study shodo (classical brush writing) and sumi-e ("ink painting") at the Sennin Foundation Center. Ohsaki Sensei continues to be an ardent exponent of shodo and sumi-e. His calligraphic art has appeared in Brush Meditation: A Japanese Way to Mind & Body Harmony (Stone Bridge Press), and he also served as a model for many of the photos in this book.
Mr. Ohsaki has, furthermore, demonstrated aiki-jujutsu in Japan at the Kokusai Budoin Sogo Budo Taikai. He has written about Shin-shin-toitsu-do (Japanese yoga) for the Nichibei Times as well. He also serves on the Board of Directors of the Sennin Foundation, Inc., and he's an assistant editor of Michi Online: Journal of Japanese Cultural Arts.
Ohsaki Jun Sensei lives in the San Francisco Bay Area, and he is the owner of Japan Auto, a service center for Japanese cars.
He came to the San Francisco Bay Area to attend the University of California at Berkeley. He is currently teaching at this institution, and he's nearing the completion of his PhD in Bioengineering. He's published numerous papers in national scientific journals and presented his research at a number of prestigious scientific meetings. He is presently working on tissue engineering solutions for skin and cardiovascular applications in medicine. He's also worked at the National Human Genome Research Institute in Maryland.
Kurpinski Sensei joined the Sennin Foundation Center in September of 2003, where he has studied the Shin-shin-toitsu-do system of Japanese yoga and meditation, along with the Saigo Ryu system of Japanese martial arts. He has obtained a Shihan-dai Associate Instructor certificate in Shin-shin-toitsu-do and a Menkyo Shodan teaching license in Saigo Ryu.
He currently resides in Berkeley, and he regularly teaches Japanese yoga and martial arts to children and adults at the Sennin Foundation Center.
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