It is important at this point to remind the reader that there was a passionate rift upon Shimizu Sensei’s death in how to count generations as Otofuji Sensei was of the same generation as Shimizu Sensei by one way of counting. Shimizu Sensei was too pivotal a character to be written out of the history books.
Matsui claims that towards Otofuji Sensei’s final days all of the deshi gathered including those from Shimizu Sensei’s line and agreed that the designation be “26th Tou” instead of “Dai” after Shiraishi Sensei. Tou is not typically used as the counting classifier. It means “gathered” or “federated”.
Evidentally to try and resolve an obvious impasse in counting, the individual that currently heads the Kobudo Federation suggested the idea. It fits Japan’s sense of ambiguity well as the wording has no real clear definition and removes from any faction the label of being argumentative.
This artiface makes both Shimizu and Otofuji Sensei the 26th Tou.(統). This would then mean that I’m after Shimizu Sensei for example and would be considered part of the 27th Tou whereas before this convention I was part of the 26th Dai. There is a small wrinkle here as Kaminoda Sensei claims to be part of the 26th generation and had not changed his position upon his death in April, 2015.
Personally, I don’t have any say in the matter. I care only so much as Shimizu Sensei is rightfully identified as the linear headmaster prior to Otofuji Sensei succeeding him. The debate can continue to rage on but it won’t help me improve my Hikiotoshi!