Saya no uchi no kachi: Victory without drawing the sword

Saya no uchi

Iai is called “Saya no uchi,” which means “inside the scabbard.”

“Kachi” means victory.

→  “Saya no uchi no kachi” means that one can defeat his/her opponents before drawing the sword.


If a man has excellent skills of iai and his opponents can recognize his advantage, the opponents wouldn’t fight against him, leading to the victory of him without drawing the sword.

Because they understand the skills of their opponents each other, they respect each other as warriors based on bushido spirit.


Not only training the physical skills of drawing sword, but also developing one’s mind through daily training is important to obtain the ability to remain calm and in control of oneself.

The ultimate goal of iai training is to get a moral perspective, with which one can strictly control oneself, act bravely for justice, love people widely, be faithful, and have good etiquette/decency.







Samurai spirits

Bushi Wa Kuwanedo Takayouji.

Meaning: Virtue that even a Samurai hasn’t eaten he won’t do unrighteous or dishonorable things.






Seven principles expressing Bushido:























  • Gi 義 means justice, righteousness or morality.
  • Yu 勇 means bravery, courage and decisiveness
  • Jin 仁 means benevolence, kind and humane.
  • Rei 礼 means politeness.
  • Makoto 誠 means honesty.
  • Meiyo 名誉 means honor.
  • Chugi 忠義  means loyalty.







You can also see the explanation of the 7 principle of bushido from Bushidotrainer’s Blog.

(1) GI – Rectitude / Right Decisions / Integrity
(2) YU – Courage / Heroic
(3) JIN – Benevolence / Compassion
(4) REI – Respect
(5) MAKOTO – Honesty & Sincerity
(6) MEIYO – Honor
(7) CHUGI – Duty & Loyalty


Or from Budo Finder, The Seven Virtues Of Bushido.

The Seven Virtues Of Bushido

  • Honor
    You cannot hide from yourself.
  • Heroic Courage
    Heroic courage is not blind. It is intelligent and strong.
  • Respect
    The true strength of a Warrior became apparent during difficult times.
  • Integrity
    Warriors make a full commitment to their decisions.
  • Compassion
    If an opportunity does not arise, they go out of their way to find one.
  • Honesty and Sincerity
    Speaking and doing are the same action.
  • Duty and Loyalty
    To everyone that they are responsible for, they remain fiercely true.


Precepts of the Bushi – (武士の心得)

  • Know yourself. (己を知ること)
  • Always follow through on commitments.(自分の言ったことは最後までやり遂げること)
  • Respect everyone.(どんな人でも尊敬すること)
  • Hold strong convictions that cannot be altered by your circumstances.(周囲に左右されない強い信念を持つこと)
  • Don’t make an enemy of yourself.(自ら敵をつくらない事)
  • Live without regrets.(事において後悔せず)
  • Be certain to make a good first impression.(人との出会いを大切にすること)
  • Don’t cling to past.(未練を持たないこと)
  • Never break a promise.(約束を破らないこと)
  • Don’t depend on other people.(人に頼らないこと)
  • Don’t speak ill of others.(人の悪口を言わないこと)
  • Don’t be afraid of anything.(如何なる事においても恐れないこと)
  • Respect the opinion of others.(人の意見を尊重すること)
  • Have compassion and understanding for everyone.(人に対して思いやりの心を持つこと)
  • Don’t be impetuous.(軽はずみに事を起こさないこと)
  • Even little things must be attended to.(小さな事でも大切にすること)
  • Never forget to be appreciative.(感謝の気持ちを忘れないこと)
  • Be first to seize the opportunity.(人に率先して事をすること)
  • Make a “desperate” effort.(物事を一生懸命すること)
  • Have a plan for your life.(人生の目標を定めること)
  • Never lose your “beginner’s spirit”.(初心を忘れないこと)

(Source: English: Masayuki Shimabukuro & Leonard J. Pellman; Japanese: Ume kyokai).