Mary Iino Burmeister became his student and brought this simple, yet profound art to the west in the 1950's.
Born in Seattle in 1918, Mary Iino went to Japan in the late 1940's to "find herself". She studied diplomacy and worked as a translator. She was interested in understanding the predjudices that she endured as a Japanese-American. She loved to study and had plans to attend a Japanese university.
Mary met Jiro at a gathering held at the home of a mutual friend. Upon meeting Mary, Jiro asked if she would be interested in bringing a gift from Japan to America. As the story goes, at that time Mary simply said "Yes", not really knowing what the gift was, perhaps thinking that it was a box of something he wanted to get to a family member in America. Little did she realize how that moment would change her life and the lives of so many that she had not yet met.
Mary became Jiro's student/apprentice and they worked together in Japan for five years. While still in Japan, Mary met an American serviceman, Gil Burmeister. They eventually married and returned to the States. Mary brought Jiro's gift with her. She continued her studies with Master Murai by correspondence and spent years expanding her understanding of the art and developing her own philosophy about Jin Shin Jyutsu.
It was 17 years before Mary started sharing Jin Shin Jyutsu with others. Here is how it began in her own words.
"I just felt I had to know something before I could say I knew it. Then I realized you can't say you ever really know an art like this. One day I found myself timidly putting my hand out to a neighbor with a back problem and saying, 'Maybe I can help you.' After five years of working with her, I moved, and she went back to her chiropractor, who called me soon after and requested that we meet. The chiropractor became my first student."
"After two years of sharing with the chiropractor, I started to translate and write down what I had learned from Jiro Murai. I'd stay up late at night after taking care of the children, writing and making drawings. The chiropractor said she had a few colleagues with whom she'd like me to share Jin Shin Jyutsu. Our group grew to about six students, including a psychologist, a physician and another chiropractor. That's how it began."
From these grassroots beginnings, Jin Shin Jyutsu has spread all over the world. You can check out the Jin Shin Jyutsu Institute for more information about practitioner training classes.