I promise to remember the Creator in all the things that I do.

Sanuces Ryu Jiu Jitsu.

Simplicity. Survival.


The gentle art.

Doctor Moses Powell sits in seiza position as he meditates. Pictured in the background is his teacher Grandprofessor Florendo Visitacion, affectionately known as Grandprofessor Vee.

The principles undergirding the practice of martial arts varies from the East to the West, from caporeira to karate, from a hobby to a lifestyle. When the art is lived through the connection of the mind, body and spirit, we reflect the Creator, the Source of all three. Beyond technique, skill and power, we discover and reflect gracefulness and humility in the art form and in our lives.

I promise to always show honor and respect to the founders of my system and my teacher.

The gentle art.

Simplicity. Survival.

Sanuces Ryu Jiu Jitsu was founded by Dr. Moses Powell. You cannot find the word in any Japanese dictionary or dialect tradition. He said the word “Sanuces” came to him, and what he derived from it as a meaning was “simplicity, survival.”

“I am Sanuces,” he would always explain. And in the purity of understanding Sanuces, it is clear. For if Sanuces was an expression that emerged through him from the Creator, its fullest expression came to us through Dr. Powell’s development, practice and teaching of Sanuces. So, the Creator’s expression to us of Sanuces was the very being of Doc: powerful and precise, yet full of grace and gratitude.

Sanuces, he would explain, is like being water. One of the most integral and distinct elements of the flow of Sanuces is embodied in the presentation of the rollout as both an offensive and defensive movement, like the flow of water. As water can bring life, as well as destroy it, Sanuces can destroy any object at any time. Like water constantly beating on the shore, it will eventually erode whatever material lies in its path. Simplicity.

I promise to overcome all of my difficulties.

Dr. Moses Powell passed away Jan. 22, 2005.

A teacher to thousands, a father, friend and mentor to many, a man among legends. More profound than the loss that is endured, his legacy is rooted in all those that he touched, on and off the martial arts mat. The 64-year-old master committed over 50 years of his life to the art and sacrificed for others to gain strength. Within his dojo, he offered youth a place of shelter and refuge from streets that held death and destruction for them. He saved lives–with his sincere love. Survival.

History records him as the first martial artist invited to demonstrate the art at the United Nations, a featured martial artist at the New York World’s Fair, and one of the first Black martial artists to teach U.S. law enforcement agencies, including the C.I.A. Unparalleled wonder at his power will forever be recognized in his one-finger rollout, which he demonstrated at Madison Square Garden.

He was a master loved in the martial arts world and beloved within the borders of the Nation of Islam and the broader arms of the Muslim community. Through teaching the principles of Sanuces, he also introduced hundreds to the principles of Islam. So trusted by the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, Brother Musa Muhammad was known to travel alone to make bank deposits for him, and he was granted permission to teach the Muslim women in their class, when all Brothers are forbidden to enter and involve themselves with the class.

In the rooms of his funeral and the hall of his memorial, neophyte students within the system who did not train directly under him were comforted–by his remarkable ability to reproduce himself. The spirit of his mastery is not lost to the world, for those who walked with him, and not just around him, carry it with a dutiful compassion for the next generation of martial artists. A note of gratitude to all those who are able to pass it on.

Never give up. Never surrender. Eye to eye. Heart to heart.

The legacy continues in the movement. Beauty, pain, growth, pain, sweat, pain, laughter, pain. Breaking down the inner fibers in order to build up an inner fire.

“The truly powerful are those who are also restrained.”–(Prof. Vee) Grandprofessor Florendo Visitacion, Dr. Powell’s teacher

Sanuces, the gentle art, the family. Simplicity. Survival.


Dr. Moses Powell. His legacy continues in our movement.

“The Promise” written by Shihan Christopher Muhammad from Brooklyn, N.Y.)