Daihonzan Chozen-ji was established in 1972 by Omori Sogen Rotaishi, a direct Dharma successor of the Tenryu-ji lineage of Rinzai Zen. He was also a successor of Yamaoka Tesshu’s Taishi School of Calligraphy and of the Jikishinkage School of fencing. In 1979, Omori Rotaishi established Daihonzan Chozen-ji as the main temple and headquarters of a new line of Zen with his Dharma successor, Tanouye Tenshin Rotaishi, as the abbot. Tanouye Rotaishi was a martial artist of extraordinary abilities; he held certificates of mastery in seven martial arts. Given this background, he revolutionized Zen training with his principle of “Ki-ai First!”– to cultivate and live into one’s essential spiritual energy as the primary focus. Tanouye Rotaishi taught that this spirit is cultivated physically through one’s own breath and center, and he developed an accessible method for this practice that emphasized the interruption of habits and attachments.