The Katori-Kashima area, located about fifty miles northeast from central Tokyo and renowned as the sites of the Katori and Kashima Shinto Shrines, is the origin of the Japanese martial arts tradition. 5 It is alleged that these shrines were established in pre-historical, mythical times. The deities of these shrines - Futsunushi-no-kami and Takemikazu-chi-no-kami, respectively - have traditionally been worshipped by many eminent swordsmen, such as Iisaza Choisai and Tsukahara Bokuden, who originated from this area. Many medieval swordsmen made pilgrimages to these shrines. Even today, kendo dojo in Japan enshrine either or both of these deities.