The term "Goju" has two contrasting meanings - Go (hard) and Ju (soft). The concept of the Goju exists in the Chinese ideology and is referred to as "yin-yang", which is positive and negative energy forces that maintain essential balance. An example of the hard/soft theory in relation to Tensho Goju methodology correlates to strategically soft blocking and circular patterns in defenses and hit hard theory.
The dynamic combination of the hard strikes to vital points of the body along with soft movements in blocking allows the counter defense measures to be applied with gracefulness overcoming hostile encounters. The sharp harmonious movements of Tensho Goju are with out a doubt effective in any combat scenario, battlefield or street.
Okinawa and Japan marks the origin of the Goju style founded by the honorable Chojun Miyagi (1888-1953). Honorable Miyagi reformed his former styles after mastering "Chinese Kempo" and "Naha-te", he named the style "Goju-Ryu Karate".
Meitoku Yagi became the successor of Okinawan Goju-Ryu Karate, after the death of the honorable Miyagi. Moreover, Gogen Yamaguchi was designated as the successor of Japenese Goju-Ryu in Japan. In 1935 Gogen Yamaguchi established the "All Japan Goju-Kai Karate-do Association" in Kyoto, Japan.
O'Sensei Peter Urban, a disciple of Gogen Yamaguchi brought the style of Goju-Ryu to the United States in 1959. In 1964 O'Sensei Peter Urban founded the U.S.A. Goju Association. Master's Frank Ruiz, Harry Rosentein and Ron Taganashi, all students of Grandmaster Peter Urban, founded the Nisei Goju Ryu system in 1969.
Grandmaster Ron Van Clief founded the Chinese Goju system on January 25, 1971. Grandmaster Van Clief is a disciple of Grandmaster Peter Urban, Frank Ruiz, Moses Powell and Leung Ting. After many years of study in Karate, Aiki-Jutsu, Ju-Jutsu, Zen-Jutsu and Kung-Fu, Grandmaster Ron Van Clief desired to bring the Goju system closer to its Chinese roots, due to the distinct ideologies of the Japanese, Chinese and American cultures. He combined the animal forms and soft aspects of his Chinese arts training, with the hard and soft characteristics of Japenese Martial arts.
Thomas L. Felder (Peacemaker), a descendent of Chinese Goju founded the Tensho Goju system on January 1, 2009. Tensho Goju is a compilation of Chinese Goju, Aiki Jitsu, Tae Kwon Do, Wing Chun and Armed Forces Combatives. Tensho Goju maintains its vigor of Goju Ryu with stances, breathing, strikes and several kata. Felder’s interpretation for Tensho can be best defined as “Heavens Breath” respective to the breath of life, or new birth. Whereas,Goju maintains the authenticity as created with hard and soft concepts. Tensho Goju embraces consistency and adaption to a changing environment, as well as human behavior.