The practice of Shorinji kempo is based on six fundamental principles.
The Six Distinguishing Characteristics of Shorinji Kempo
Ken Zen Ichinyo - Body and Mind are one
Shorinji kempo aims to improve both mind and body
Riki Ai Funi - Strength and Compassion
Shorinji kempo believes that there is a need for a balance between physical strength and compassion.
Strength without compassion is violence; compassion without strength is ineffective.
Shushu Koju - Defence is Primary and Attack is Secondary
For both ethical and technical reasons, this is a fundamental characteristic of Shorinji kempo.
Fusatsu Katsujin - Protect People Without Injury - Not to Kill but to Awaken!
Shorinji kempo is very effective, graduated system of self-defence. It can be used as a way of stopping violence and neutralising an attack without causing serious or permanent injury
Goju Ittai - Hard and Soft Work Only Together
Shorinji kempo is made up of goho (hard techniques; punching and kicking) and juho (soft techniques; throws, grabs and eludes).
By uniting both goho and juho systems; the two to form a unique and dynamic system.
Kumite Shutai - Cooperation - Pair Work is Fundamental
Shorinji kempo can only be mastered through co-operative practice in pair form.
Overwhelming and defeating one's training partner is not the objective.
These teachings are fundamental to Shorinji kempo practice and kenshi (Shorinji Kempo students) are expected to acquire an in depth understanding of each subject during the course of their training.