John Taylor has taken offence to a recent article in the November issue Blitz (Australian martial arts magazine) about Eddie Emin and his memory of Sosai Mas Oyama.
Dear Shihan, Sensei & Sempai, Osu
I wish to draw your attention to a story that is both insulting and derogatory to the reputation and good name of Sosai Oyama.
Please take the time to read the attachment and I am sure you will be as outraged as I am and if you are, then I hope you will forward the attachment on to other Kyokushin members throughout the World. I think you will agree that every faction of Kyokushin, the senior grades, instructors and students should all be outrages about this matter and let the individual in question know of our disgust.
Below is the attached letter titled “Eddie_Emin_&_Blitz.doc” as sent by John Taylor to many Kyokushin followers.
THE GREATEST INSULT TO SOSAI OYAMA
Since the death of Sosai Oyama we have witnessed Kyokushin splitting into many organisations. This has caused many old friends to separate and, in some instances, have ill-feeling towards each other, nevertheless, we are all united in the memory of Sosai Oyama.
However, in a recent article in the Australian martial arts magazine “Blitz” (November issue), Eddie Emin, who was graded to 8th Dan by the Kyokushin Karate Union and who is still a current member, had a story published about his life in Kyokushin Karate. Should anyone want to contact Blitz Magazine regarding this publication or to purchase the magazine, please do so as it certainly worth reading. This can be done at firstname.lastname@example.org
In all fairness to Blitz magazine, which is a highly respected martial arts magazine in Australia, it should be pointed out that Blitz magazine will publish my exposé regarding the Eddie Emin story and they (Blitz) had no way of confirming the facts and did not have any doubt at that time about the authenticity of what Eddie claimed
In the story, Eddie claims to have travelled to Japan in the late 1950’s and fought Sosai Oyama. In the article Eddie also claims to have knocked Sosai down and when he went to help Sosai up, Sosai punched him in the face knocking out his front teeth. Disregarding the fact that Eddie consistently refers to Sosai Oyama as “Oyama” not “Sosai”, in itself shows a lack of respect. The story is derogatory to Sosai and a complete fabrication I have no doubt all Kyokushin members throughout the world will be outraged by this outlandish and diabolical claim, which is a complete fabrication on Emin’s part.
Firstly, let me quote Eddie Emin from the Blitz magazine story.
“After fighting 30 other people that day, Oyama told him that they would now fight each other. Out of respect, Emin took it easy on his master, but after a few hard knock-downs, he decided it was time to fight back and said “stuff this!” and started to hit him (Oyama) hard. Emin reminisces “I knocked him down, and then put my hand out to help him up – and he punched me right in the mouth! I lost three front teeth” Emin was shocked and amazed – after all I was only trying to help. “He looked at me and said “you never embarrass the teacher in front of the class – you don’t help me, I get up myself” Emin stood nervously after their confrontation and didn’t know what to think. When Oyama eventually spoke, he told Emin that he was graded straight to 2nd Dan – the first time Oyama had ever done so”.
The kindest thing that can be said about the whole thing is that it is just the ramblings of a self-serving “old fool”. To set the facts straight, in the late fifties Sosai Oyama had not yet built his Honbu dojo so Eddie would have had to have trained at Sosai’s original dojo, not Honbu, surely a point that he would not have failed to mention as very few westerners were afforded the privilege of training there. Shihan Bobby Lowe from Hawaii and Hanshi Steve Arneil were two of these few men, a significant point that I am sure, had Eddie actually trained in Japan at that time, they would certainly have mentioned. Shihan Lowe’s time at the old dojo with Sosai is well documented but there is no mention of Mr Emin.
Factually, I took Eddie on his first trip to Japan with the Australian team to the Kyokushin World Championships. At that time, Eddie and everyone who went with the AKKA tour trained together and no one ever saw Eddie and Sosai fighting. In fact, Sosai Oyama had actually stopped sparring with his students by the time I first travelled to Japan to train in 1970, long before Eddie went to Japan. As for knocking Sosai down, Eddie was never good enough to knock Sosai down and if, hypothetically such a thing did happen, I guarantee that Sosai would have taken it well and never have even thought about knocking out his front teeth. Eddie Emin shows no respect for the man Sosai was by suggesting that Sosai would have been so vindictive to have done so. The whole incident, as he outlines in his story, is an insult and derogatory to Sosai Oyama, who was without doubt the world’s greatest Karate Master and an insult Eddie Emin should be ashamed of. Also, I know that after 30 fights with the Japanese students of that era, Eddie Emin would not have been able to knock down my “old granny”! The really sad part of this rubbish is that it puts Sosai in a bad light and not the great teacher and the humane man he was. The most interesting point about this incident is that none of this was ever mentioned by Eddie when Sosai was alive. That fact alone condemns this story as the lie it is. Sosai was a man who fought 100 fights a day for three days in a row and only stopped when he ran out of opponents. Commonsense tells us that Eddie was never good enough to knock down Kancho Oyama. Another point to take into account is that when we look at the physical attributes of both Sosai and Eddie, Eddie is about 5 ft 6 ins in old measurements and Sosai was well over that, fought bulls and weighed about 100 kgs…. You work it out.
Among the many other pieces of fiction in Eddie’s tale is that he travelled back to Japan with Sensei Kato. Sensei Kato left for Japan from Sydney and I was at the airport to see him off, so unless Eddie was hiding in his luggage, Sensei Kato did not take Eddie to Japan with him. In the article Eddie Emin claims that Sosai Oyama sent Sensei Kato to Australia specifically to teach Kyokushin karate to him alone, however, it was actually Ivan Zavetchanos who was in Japan and was introduced to Sosai by Don Dragor. Ivan then organized with Sosai for Sensei Kato to come to Australia. Ivan in his own words says he did not bring Sensei Kato to Australia to teach Eddie as Eddie claims, but to teach karate at his down dojo. Sensei Kato being sent to Australia by Sosai specifically to teach Eddie as he claims in the story is utter nonsense. In fact Sensei Kato, who introduced Kyokushin to Australia, had nothing to do with Eddie and as stated above, it was all arranged by Ivan Zavetchanos. If anyone would like to confirm these facts, Ivan is happy to do so.
Eddie Emin’s real life’s story in Kyokushin is well known to all of us in Australian Kyokushin Karate (he forgets we were there) and as such, we know to take what he says with a grain of salt but to tarnish the character of Sosai Oyama cannot go without consequence, especially when it did not happen.
The whole world should be up in arms about Emin and his lies. He should be condemned and expelled from the Kyokushin Karate Union and never be allowed into any Kyokushin organisation again. I am sure all of the true Kyokushin members in the Kyokushin Karate Union would and should be ashamed to have such a man as this, who not only claims to be an 8th Dan in their organisation, but one who would for his own ego, defile the great name of Sosai Oyama. There are many fine Kyokushin Shihan in the Karate Union, such as Shihan Daigo Oishi and Shihan Yasuhiro Shichinohe, both of whom I am sure will be as shocked and angry at the Eddie Emin claims as will all the Shihan, Sensei, Sempai and Kyokushin members worldwide.
The Blitz web page is www.spotzblitz.net