From 1986 to 1994 – Europe

Suzuki Mitsunari sensei

From the year 1986 and during the following years, the activity of the Academy was characterized by an intense and meaningful evolution.

The internal organization of the school had consolidated in relation to the apprentices number and experience and the Kyudo Academy of Rome (ARK), as Mr. Procesi suggested, decided to open to and to confront the other European realities and it did so by subscribing to the national and foreign Federations that had been set up both for the sword and the bow.

Kamogawa Nobuyuki sensei

This allowed constant participation to study seminars and access to the exam in order to reach higher levels (dan), both held yearly by the European Kyudo Federation and by the International Kendo Federation under the aegis and teachings of the most qualified Masters from the Federations of Kyudo and sword. Among others, some are worth mentioning: Suzuki Mitsunari sensei, the current President of IKYF (International Kyudo Federation), Kamogawa Nobuyuki sensei, President of the ZNKR and the Ishido family for the sword.

The attendance to these meetings made ARK appreciated and known among all the European National Federations and made possible the exchange of experiences with people practicing in others countries. At the same time, Mr. Placido Procesi, acting as President of the ARK, supplied a series of contacts with the world of Japanese archery which enriched the ARK with a deepening of the practice.

The ARK started an affectionate relationship with Iwao Matsui sensei, representative of the Bishu Chikurin, the ancient and prestigious kyudo school. Such relationship became steadier in the course of the years through a stream of correspondence and meetings.

Mr Procesi established a close tie with Iwao Matsui sensei, representative of the Bishu Chikurin, the ancient and prestigious kyudo school. Such relationship got steadier over the years through a stream of correspondence and meetings.

Mr. Procesi also got on well with Onubma Hidearu sensei, head of the Sekka-ha Heki Ryu school, with whom he shared views on the practice of archery favouring its “spiritual” aspect.

Kamidana dal Tempio di Ise

Moreover the close tie with Takeuchi sensei and his apprentices from the Hyogo and Shiga Prefectures allowed the Academy to organize seminars in Rome every year. In one of these occasions, in 1986, a Kamidana (a Shinto shrine) was sent as a present to ARK directly from the Ise Sanctuary and brought over by the senseis. This was due to Mr. Procesi having used as a logo for the school the Goddess Amaterasu`s mirror which is in fact kept in Ise.

“The symbol of the school is a pure white mirror, shining in the blu sky. It represents the profound meaning of the practice which is the original, causeless illuminated state, the energy of the Spirit, in which everything is visible and where everything is fulfilled, spontaneously and effortlessly expressed in the genuine awareness of its existence within each one of us. This counts as fixed reference system in order to avoid drifting away from the authentic traditional spirit”. (From the ARK rules and regulations).

Kentaro Miyazaki sensei

As the Academy kept the practice going, The sword group chose the study of Iaido as a unified aim and kept practicing it through the years under the guidance of Kentaro Miyazaki sensei, following in particular the Setei Iai and the Musoshinden style.

Equally important was the registration in 1991of the Japanese Association “ARK in Japan” (ARKJ) which still exists.