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It was hard for me to properly rate T. Sadly, there were a few sizeable impediments to my full enjoyment of this ancient text…
Miyamoto Musashi, also known as Shinmen Takezō, Miyamoto Bennosuke or, by his Buddhist name, Niten Dōraku, was a Japanese swordsman, philosopher, strategist, writer and rōnin.
This one is on the recommended reading list of Dr. Michael Gervais’s Compete To Create “Finding Your Best” course, which I just finished. [As a side note; I thoroughly enjoyed the course, and would recommend it to anyone reading this review.]
As I found when I was trying to decide“
between an audiobook and PDF version of this one – there are many, many different versions of this book. It was originally published in Japan, circa 1645, and titled 五輪書, (or Go Rin no Sho).Wikipedianotes: “There have been various translations made over the years, and it enjoys an audience considerably broader than only that of martial artists and people across East Asia.”
I found many of the concepts presented interesting, but sadly, I think quite a lot of the import and message of the original may have been lost in translation…
The writing in the original text is broken into 5 chapters: Earth, Water, Fire, Wind, & Void.Here is a brief summary, taken from a Quora page:
1) Earth: Your base ground in everything. Knowledge of art, how martial-arts is not just about fighting. But, an art of everything in life. That requires creativity. Linked to a carpenter master and his tools in perfect order. Daily cleaning and essence check2) Water: Mind and body must become one through rigorous practice and both should be a little step higher than yesterday, today. Tomorrow a step higher than today. Be like a gourd in the stream, contouring both(mind and body) like it would down a chaotic current.3)Fire: Through daily practice in meditation and duels. Develop a mindset of fire. By wielding two-swords and using a no-mind technique. Can one come to conclude this chapter. In a match, to the death, with one or many opponents. The outcome is determined by the amiable and fixed deviant person can bring survivability to oneself. Like a fire in a timber yard. Cut down all in a position of high-ground and or manipulation of their offense by the actions mimicking theirs. Set fire to your soul and to all through precise yet chaotic attacks.4) Wind: Wind has no form and can’t be held by anything. Like a wind from heaven, smite and contort around enemies like a thunder from the sky. Even God’s must fear your means. By breathing from ones stomach can one achieve most power. Become the rhythm of the surroundings and slice like a leaf bound for its final destination.5) Void: Knowing and mastering everything. One must let go of everything to truly become a master. Let’s say you really like a video game coming out in a few weeks. You read strategy guides, visit forums, chat with other players, etc.. Having found out all the means before launch. When the game arrives, the excitement makes you lose sense of time and place and with the knowledge tou have, you spend countless hours until achievements. That is the way of the this chapter. By understanding situation,time, and place. Musashi met many(if not all) the masters of their arts of that time in the area. Most preferred honor over anything. Musashi had placed an emphasis on wining at all costs with honor attached. In void sense, you master everything and let go of everything in a confrontation. Thusly, rewarding in a win-win situation.
I’m also going to include the book’s description here, which I’ve taken from its Wikipedia page; mainly for my own future reference. I’ll cover it with a spoiler, as it’s fairly lengthy:
T is a book that pops up over and over again in many other titles I’ve read. It was only a matter of time before I got to it myself.I wish I could say that I enjoyed it more…Unfortunately, there have been a few hundred years, and a vastly fundamental language barrier between the original text, and that enjoyment.3 stars.</[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]></[“br”]>