Hagakure: The Book of the Samurai

By Yamamoto Tsunetomo

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Hagakure ("In the Shadow of Leaves") is a manual for the samurai classes consisting of a series of short anecdotes and reflections that give both insight and instruction-in the philosophy and code of behavior that foster the true spirit of Bushido-the Way of the Warrior. It is not a book of philosophy as most would understand the word: it is a collection of thoughts and sa Hagakure ("In the Shadow of Leaves") is a...

Book details

August 30th 2002 by Kodansha

(first published 1716)

Edition Language
English

Quotes From "Hagakure: The Book of the Samurai"

"There is surely nothing other than the single purpose of the present moment. A man's whole life is a succession of moment after moment. There will be nothing else to do, and nothing else to pursue. Live being true to the single purpose of the moment."
"Even if it seems certain that you will lose, retaliate. Neither wisdom nor technique has a place in this. A real man does not think of victory or defeat. He plunges recklessly towards an irrational death. By doing this, you will awaken from your dreams."
"To give a person an opinion one must first judge well whether that person is of the disposition to receive it or not."
"Be true to the thought of the moment and avoid distraction. Other than continuing to exert yourself, enter into nothing else, but go to the extent of living single thought by single thought."
"It is a wretched thing that the young men of today are so contriving and so proud of their material posessions. Men with contriving hearts are lacking in duty. Lacking in duty, they will have no self-respect."
"Bushido is realized in the presence of death. This means choosing death whenever there is a choice between life and death. There is no other reasoning."
"When one is writing a letter, he should think that the recipient will make it into a hanging scroll."
"If a warrior is not unattached to life and death, he will be of no use whatsoever. The saying that “All abilities come from one mind” sounds as though it has to do with sentient matters, but it is in fact a matter of being unattached to life and death. With such non-attachment one can accomplish any feat."

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