Intonjutsu Art of Escape

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Intonjutsu (隠遁術) (the art of escape and concealment) is the Ninja art of “disappearing”. It comprises such techniques as Gotonpo (hiding using the five elements), and Shinobi Aruki (silent movement). These techniques are practised on occasion by practitioners of Ninjutsu.

Intonjutsu is closely related to Shinobi Iri. This technique is translated as “lying low”, and includes the art of Onshinjutsu (invisibility techniques) Onshin Tongyo no Jutsu (techniques for concealment and escape), and Kyojutsu ten kan ho (in this case, the art of changing). These skills were regarded as the highest level of techniques within Ninjutsu. They traditionally included hiding and camouflage. Kyojutsu ten kan ho was making the ancient Ninja appear to be something or someone else – such as the classic disguises of a monk, traveling actor, or a gardener.

This applies to survival in a modern urban environment because there are times when you want to be invisible to people: You do not want to stand out in any way. This is a form of urban camouflage. This takes two forms in modern urban survival: not letting people know who you are, and the more difficult technique of being invisible.

Many people provide much more information than they should. They have websites where they provide their name, background, interests, and other information. They may even have a blog that provides intimate details of their life. On a smaller scale, we often give people information about ourselves in the t-shirts we wear and other outward indicators of our lives. Most of time, it probably will not make any difference; but you do not want to give people more information than necessary, and you do not want to tip off another skilled person that you have some training. I am proud of this art, and I wear Bujinkan t-shirts all the time. I only do so, however, when I am in my relatively safe environment. I do not wear them when I travel or if I go to a bar or someplace where it might provide someone more information than I want them to have. I am not suggesting you become paranoid, but you should always think about the information you are providing to those who might use it against you.

At a more advanced level, you can actually become invisible to others. I am not speaking of people ignoring you, I talking about them not even recognizing your presence. Part of it has to do with what you wear; but you can go beyond that to where it is as if you were not there. Being invisible is actually better than being confident. Many people say “walk confidently with your head up”. This is true, as much from an awareness standpoint as anything else. But if you are too confident, you can actually attract attention. If you are invisible, people will not even notice you. This is a concept beyond this article, but it is possible with some training.