Bushido: The Way of the Samurai Tsunetomo Yamamoto

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109 pages


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Bushido: The Way of the Samurai  by  Tsunetomo Yamamoto

Bushido: The Way of the Samurai by Tsunetomo Yamamoto
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In eighteenth-century Japan, Tsunetomo Yamamoto created the Hagakure, a document that served as the basis for samurai warrior behavior. For the next two hundred years, the Hagakure was secretly circulated among the awakened samurai--the samuraiMoreIn eighteenth-century Japan, Tsunetomo Yamamoto created the Hagakure, a document that served as the basis for samurai warrior behavior. For the next two hundred years, the Hagakure was secretly circulated among the awakened samurai--the samurai elite. In 1906, the book was first made available to the general Japanese public, and until 1945, its guiding principles greatly influenced the Japanese ruling class--particularly those individuals in military power.

However, the spirit of the Hagakure touched a deeper nerve in Japanese society. It was this book that shaped the underlying character of the Japanese psyche, from businessmen to politicians, from students to soldiers.Bushido: The Way of the Samurai is the first English translation of the Hagakure. From its opening line, I have found the essence of Bushido: to die! this work provides a powerful message aimed at the spirit, body, and mind of the samurai warrior. It offers beliefs that are difficult for the Western mind to embrace, yet fascinating in their pursuit of absolute service.

By reading this book, one can better put into perspective the historical path that Japan has taken for the last three hundred years, and gain greater insight into the Japan of today.Tsunetomo Yamamoto was born in 1659 and devoted his adult life to the service of his Shogun master, Lord Mitsushige Nabeshima, and his clan, rising to become a highly respected samurai warrior. Upon his master’s death in 1700, Yamamoto renounced the world and retired to a hermitage. While at his retreat, a close friend and disciple recorded Yamamoto’s thoughts and ideas on what it meant to be a Japanese warrior.

Although Yamamoto requested that the work never be published, the Hagakure--literally meaning hidden behind the leaves--did survive, influencing the development of a culture and serving as the basis of Bushido, the way of the samurai.Minoru Tanaka, translator, is a professor of English at a college in Kyoto, Japan. He has taught English to Japanese speakers for the past thirty years.Justin F. Stone, editor, is an accomplished writer, musician, poet, and artist. He is fluent in the Japanese language and is a Master of T’ai Chi.

Over the past thirty years, Stone has traveled extensively throughout Japan. He lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico.



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