The vision of Shimabuku Tatsuo Sensei to represent his Isshinryu Karate system.
The patch or crest worn by Isshinryu karateka often raises admiration and curiosity. The patch is based on a day dream Tatsuo Shimabuku had in the fifties while he was creating his karate style. This dream was the missing piece in the puzzle called Isshinryu. The patch is often called Mizu Gami, which means 'water goddess'. Originally the Isshinryu emblem was called 'Isshinryu No Megami', which means 'Goddess of Isshinryu'. However; most Isshinryu karateka incorrectly call it Mizu Gami, or 'Water Goddess'. Master Eiko Kaneshi, Tatsuo's right-hand-man who is a Shinto priest when asked if it was 'Mizu Gami' said it has nothing to do with water. Isshinryu no Megami or Megami for short, is correct. This is collaborated by Marien Jumelet who asked Shinsho Shimabuku and Kensho Tokumura what was the correct name. The goddes is the Goddess of Isshinryu karate and not the goddess of water.
Arcenio J, Advincula, an American student of Sensei, created the Megami-patch in 1961 with Tatsuo Shimabuku's approval. As model he used Tatsuo's picture of the goddess. The shape of the emblem is as the vertical fist of Isshinryu, the trademark of this remarkable karate style.
Framed Isshinryu no Megami
The original 2 patches. It is believed that the patchmaker thought that Advincula Sensei had made a mistake by putting his thumb on top so he made the patches with the thumb on the side!