It seems to me that the koryu arts that have decided to spread outside of Japan are doing so in two ways. A) The first way is with a branch dojo run by a fully qualified teacher who trained in Japan for many many years ...... for example Phil Relnick of Katori Shinto Ryu. These teachers will have teaching licenses and even menkyo kaiden (or equivalent). IMO this kind of arrangement is the next best thing to actually being in Japan. B) The other way I see koryu spreading is via some kind of "distance learning" approach. These involve some learning via seminars or occasional trips to Japan. The majority of the training is in so called "study groups" where the members just practice what they have learned ...... without a qualified teacher being present. In most of these "study groups" everyone will be pretty much equal. There is no-one with any teaching license. Sure maybe someone will be a bit more experienced and will become the de facto "group leader" ..... but that does not change the fact that there is no teacher and no contact with a real teacher except for seminars and maybe a trip to Japan. Arts which I see doing this include the mainline Kukishinden and also Daito Ryu. Is this second approach a good idea or not? Does the absence of a teacher mean it is like the blind leading the blind? Can the students in such a "study group" really be doing koryu?