Significance of 138 in Shorinji Kempo?

Discussion in 'Kenpo' started by Jim, Oct 4, 2004.

  1. Jim

    Jim New Member

    Just wondering if there was any special reason why there are 138 strike zones and also 138 healing/massage points taught in Shorinji Kempo.
  2. Greg-VT

    Greg-VT Peasant

    I'm thinking it may have to do with points of Chi.

    Good place to hit, and also a good point to heal.
  3. Colin Linz

    Colin Linz Valued Member

    Good question, I’ve never given it much thought. To be honest I don’t know that I can give a satisfactory answer, as I don’t know all the seiho techniques, or in fact how to use all the kyusho.

    I believe there are 708 vital points, of these we use 138. I don’t know why this is, but I do know Doshin So was only concerned with techniques that were useful. This is why he only taught the staff techniques to one sensei, who only had one arm. He felt that these techniques were no longer useful, as most people didn’t walk around with them any more. It is possible that he didn’t see these remaining 570 points as being useful within his system of techniques. Pressure points are not something that you use as a stand alone technique, but rather as an adjunct to existing techniques to increase there effectiveness.

    As for seiho I know that many of the points are the same as the ones used in self defence. What changes is the direction of applied force; by way of an example there is one point that will cause serious injury if hit in one direction, but if hit in another direction it can stop a nose bleed. I know that there are 138 of these points, but I’m not a 100% sure that they are all the same points that are used in self defence, or why we use only 138 of them. Our kyusho charts only list 138 vital points so I’m assuming that they are the same.

    I will try and find out a little more information and give a more helpful answer at a later stage.
  4. Ad McG

    Ad McG Troll-killer Supporter

    708 points?!? How big are these points? :D
  5. Colin Linz

    Colin Linz Valued Member

    Because we are all different, they are exactly 1/708th of the surface area of your body. :D
  6. getgoin

    getgoin Idiot Savant

    One of the few times in life that I am glad to be small. :cool:
  7. Omicron

    Omicron is around.

    This has always been my understanding. Doshin So was very good at systematizing, and he was also big on practicality. Just like Colin says, I think that he found most of the points to be too difficult or not effective enough to make them worthwhile inclusions in Shorinji Kempo.
    I've not learned of any special significance of the number 138, I think that was just the number he chose to include. I'll be interested to hear if the points used in seiho are all the same too, Colin. I always assumed that they were, but I don't think I've heard a difinitive answer. I'll ask my sensei tomorrow.
  8. Jim

    Jim New Member

    Thanks for the answers guys. I just thought it an odd coincidence that they were the same number. I looking at the pamplet that I'd found laying around somewhere ;) and thought that there was probably some kind of mystical significance with the number... it doesn't even divide equally by eight (which would have been something at least).
  9. Colin Linz

    Colin Linz Valued Member

    I don’t believe that the number holds any mystical or supernatural significance, as this would be against all that Doshin So believed in. I think it has more to do with practicalities within the system, the techniques used , and points that had the best response. With seiho we don’t use needles to stimulate these points, but pressure. This may also have a bearing on it.

    Jim, you where lucky to find a pamphlet on Shorinji Kempo, they don’t show up often.
  10. Jim

    Jim New Member

  11. Colin Linz

    Colin Linz Valued Member

    Jim, Who is James?
  12. Jim

    Jim New Member

    Err.. Whatcha mean?

    Dunno what happened with my post (above). I'm sure I posted something there. Maybe I got deleted?

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