“As to the origin and native land of Ju Jutsu, there are several opinions, but they are found to be mere assumptions based on narratives relating to the founding of certain schools, or some incidental records or illustrations found in the ancient manuscripts not only in Japan but in China, Persia, Germany, and Egypt. There is no record by which the origins of Ju Jutsu can be definitely established. It would, however, be rational to assume that ever since the creation, with the instinct of self-preservation, man has had to fight for existence, and was inspired to develop an art or skill to implement the body mechanism for this purpose. In such efforts, the development may have taken various courses according to the condition of life or tribal circumstance, but the object and mechanics of the body being common, the results could not have been so very different from each other. No doubt this is the reason for finding records relating to the practice of arts similar to Ju Jutsu in various parts of the world, and also for the lack of records of its origins.”
–Sensei G. Koizumi, Kodokan 7th Dan
There are several theories regarding the origins of Jiu jitsu, but the most common theory asserted by historians hold that Jiu jitsu, the oldest martial art, can be traced back to India where it was invented by Buddhist monks and further developed in China. The concept here is that the Shaolin temple was built in the center of China and this is where Dharma introduced Buddhism and Boxing. Buddhist Monks in northern India are said to have greatly contributed to the early development of Jiu-Jitsu. Bandits constantly assaulted the monks during their long journeys through the interior of India. Buddhist religious and moral values did not encourage the use of weapons so they were forced to develop an empty hand system of self-defense These monks developed movements based on balance and leverage, in a manner that would avoid reliance on strength and weapons. Jiu jitsu later found its way through China and to Japan where it gained even more popularity.
Widely popularized through its effectiveness in the mma arena, jiu jitsu has become regarded as the most effective martial art, tried and tested over generations of realistic fight scenarios. The ability to defeat an opponent without the use of violence has empowered the students of jiu jitsu both physically and mentally, on and off the mat.