Before Musashi died, he wrote these 21 precepts for his disciples. For anyone who is forced or chooses to walk alone; I see these 21 things to be of great value. One must study them and meditate upon these words and allow them to develop a truth within you. These could be radically different than how I see these principles for myself.

  1. Do not turn your back on the various ways of this world.
  2. Do not scheme for physical pleasure.
  3. Do not intend to rely on anything.
  4. Consider yourself lightly; consider the world deeply.
  5. Do not ever think in acquisitive terms.
  6. Do not regret things about your own personal life.
  7. Do not envy another’s good or evil.
  8. Do not lament parting on any road whatsoever.
  9. Do not complain or feel bitterly about yourself or others.
  10. Have no heart for approaching the part path of love.
  11. Do not have preferences.
  12. Do not harbor hopes for your own personal home.
  13. Do not have a liking for delicious food for yourself.
  14. Do not carry antiques handed down from generation to generation.
  15. Do not fast so that it affects you physically.
  16. While it’s different with military equipment, do not be fond of material things.
  17. While on the way, do not begrudge death.
  18. Do not be intent on possessing valuables or a fief in old age.
  19. Respect the gods and Buddhas, but do not depend on them.
  20. Though you give up your life, do not give up your honor.
  21. Never depart from the Way of Martial Arts.

December 18th 2011

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