chapter  2
Zen's influence on the Yagyū-ryū
Pages 7

Though he was reared in the warring states period and was exposed to actual battlefield combat experience, after the defeat of the Chibas, he retreated to Umekiyama. It is here, during the time of his retreat, that he conceived of the expression, 'heiho is heiho,'15 a pun. The term 'heiho' has two meanings, both pronounced the same but written in different characters. The first refers to martial arts ( ~¥t ); the second to peace ( -¥i:ft ). The expression, therefore, means 'the way of martial arts is the way to peace.' Though this may sound paradoxical, what the expression actually means is that the discipline involved in the development of martial arts (Le., man-cosmos integration) is applicable to the arts of peace. Chosai, a devoted Shingon Mikkyo practitioner, apparently understood Shingon Mikkyo philosophy and realized that man-cosmos integration leads not only to the development of martial skills but also to the development of a new horizon - harmony among humankind and ultimately its integration with the universe itself. Thus he refused to engage in duels. On one occasion, when he was forced to, so it is said, he demonstrated that synergistic force by levitating himself. The astonished challenger meekly left. Choisai, like many medieval ninja, apparently was a skillful hypnotizer as well.