musashi 21 principles for life

Miyamoto Musashi is the greatest swordsman to ever live; undefeated in 61 one-one-one duels.

Musashi’s total kill-count is much higher – he fought in clan wars too. 

Musashi killed his first man when he was 13. About the same time most modern-children receive their first smartphone.

Musashi’s specialty was fighting with two swords. 

musashi

Musashi was a Ronin. A Ronin is a samurai without a master. Many believe a Ronin is an honorable figure. Businesses and writers who don’t understand Japanese history make this mistake. Calling your business “Spartan”, like a child attaching a cape to his back, jumping off the living room couch pretending to be Superman.

There are no more ronins. There are no more Spartans.

An obstacle race is as Spartan as a obese person posing on a magazine is brave. Spartans are killers. Obstacle-race-runners are accountants. Understand the difference.

The Ronin weren’t celebrated. Ronin were shamed warriors whose master’s banished them, or, their master died and the Samurai, now Ronin, refused to follow their master into the afterlife.

Musashi was a wandering Ronin.

Musashi traveled throughout Japan dueling opponents. This was his life, well, the majority of it. Musashi’s life contained vast amounts of suffering, combat, and struggle. Beyond dueling, Musashi fought in wars between rivaling Samurai clans. It’s curious why Musashi fought in these wars – his nature is independent. He may not have had a say in the matter.

The Dokkodo

miyamoto musashi

During Musashi’s final days he created the Dokkodo, or, The Path of Aloneness. The Dokkodo includes 21 precepts for life.

Precept is a law, or a rule. 

Throughout this article: Precept, rule, and principle are used to describe Musashi’s Dokkodo.

Musashi wrote the Dokkodu one week before his death.

Other Translations of the Dokkodo include:

  • The way to go forth alone
  • The way of walking alone

Musashi died in his 50’s or 60’s. The Dokkodo was his final work, completed approximately 5 days before Musashi died.

Even though technology changed the world Musashi lived in his rules still apply. The world changes but people don’t. Read the rules below and consider them carefully. An analysis of each rule will help you understand how Musashi’s philosophy for walking alone applies to your path.

The links below will jump to different sections of the article.

Musashi’s 21 Precepts for Life

  1. Accept everything just the way it is.
  2. Do not seek pleasure for its own sake.
  3. Do not, under any circumstances, depend on a partial feeling.
  4. Think lightly of yourself and deeply of the world.
  5. Be detached from desire your whole life long.
  6. Do not regret what you have done.
  7. Never be jealous.
  8. Never let yourself be saddened by a separation.
  9. Resentment and complaint are appropriate neither for oneself or others.
  10. Do not let yourself be guided by the feeling of lust or love.
  11. In all things have no preferences.
  12. Be indifferent to where you live.
  13. Do not pursue the taste of good food.
  14. Do not hold on to possessions you no longer need.
  15. Do not act following customary beliefs.
  16. Do not collect weapons or practice with weapons beyond what is useful.
  17. Do not fear death.
  18. Do not seek to possess either goods or fiefs for your old age.
  19. Respect Buddha and the gods without counting on their help.
  20. You may abandon your own body but you must preserve your honor.
  21. Never stray from the way.

 

Musashi Precept 1 | Accept Everything Just the Way it is

musashi rules for life - rule 1


Musashi Principle 1 | Accept Everything Just the Way it is.

You cannot stop the change.

Change is the most powerful force in the world. Change cannot be stopped. Like, how, you’ll never be able to stop a river. Water will continue traveling until time falls out of the universe like the earth crumbling, falling, into an infinite expanse below us that is space.

But change is beautiful.

Be Like Water | Be Like Change

bruce lee be like water

Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless — like water. Now you put water in a cup, it becomes the cup; You put water into a bottle it becomes the bottle; You put it in a teapot it becomes the teapot. Now water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend.

Bruce Lee

Change doesn’t change. Change is the true constant in the world. You’re changing right now–getting older not younger. If you’re reading the best books on the Samurai, you’re becoming more intelligent. Becoming a better human. True self-improvement. Walking the path, like the Samurai: The path is constant improvement. 

You can change for the worst too.

If you do nothing; you’re still changing. While the world turns–while the river flows–you’re left behind, stuck in your old ways while a new operating system slowly installs into culture.

If you make the wrong choices you change for the worst. David Goggins used to be a loser then he turned his life around. It’s difficult to know if you’re making the wrong choice if you haven’t stopped–meditated–and took a few moments to determine what constitutes negative change; what actions make you change negatively. The things you do which don’t help you walk further down the path.

The Answer is simple.

If You aren’t Improving your losing

improving or losing

Playing video games is not a good use of your time. But reading books is always a good use of time.

Even though video games are, now, incredibly popular and monetizable; video games aren’t a craft.

Overwatch, PubG, and Call of Duty are all popular games in 2018. In three years they’ll all become forgotten. You can play Overwatch for twelve hours a day–mastering the game–then in two years a new game comes out and the world forgets about Overwatch. They forget about your craft.

Other skills are different.

The world, as we know, will always need writers, doctors, auto technicians, computer programmers, designers and creatives. But no one needs typewriter repair men anymore. Change destroys vulnerable industries. 

Creative pursuits are indestructible. Ideas can’t be outsourced because ideas need passion–fuel–to grow the legs needed to walk through change. Understand the course of the activities you choose to take part in.

Look to the future. Pay attention to where the river runs.

Accept everything as it is

accept anything as it is

You can’t change the flow of the river.

Most people can’t tolerate change. They make their lives hard by swimming against the current instead of swimming with the current.

If you swim with the current your life is accelerated as the world and momentum pushes you forward, passing those who continue to fight change; the depressed and the miserable who yearn for the good old days. They don’t understand: The good days are in the future. Not in the past.

Crypto-currency is a river.

If you bought Bitcoin when it first emerged–a few hundred coins–today you’d have more money than you know what to do with and probably, already retired with a movie theater in your house and a pool table in your basement.

If you haven’t started with Crypto: Try coinbase. You’ll get 10$ of free Bitcoin.

Musashi accepted the world | The world belonged to him

Musashi dueling

Musashi didn’t fight change.

Like Bruce Lee, Musashi was water; whatever he needed to be he was. His ego couldn’t pull him around. Musashi’s enemies believed they were the best and the all lost. Musashi’s enemies were pulled by their egos to believe their lofty positions were permanent. We earn nothing. 

Musashi did whatever it took to win. Musashi never did what he wanted to do; Musashi did what he needed to do, following the current of change.

Musashi never stood still like a rock trying to block the flow of water. He knew refusing to change didn’t prevent change but instead left him behind while others grew in skill.

musashi creek

Musashi trained every day in his craft.

Warfare. He was better than all the other warriors because the others found what worked for them and stayed there forever.

Musashi found solutions that worked for him then searched for more answers. He always sought to improve his craft.

Musashi didn’t fight change. He knew change is a constant and change must be accepted in order to have a fighting chance at happiness or greatness in the world.

Accept Everything as it is.

You can’t win if you’re playing a game that isn’t real. Let truth lead you to a better, more fulfilling life. Lies can only hurt. The fearful use lies as a swaddling security blanket to hold and coddle the pain that truth inflicts through stress.

Stress is a signal. Fear is a signal too. Follow them. 

Accept everything as it is and make use of what you have now.

Musashi Precept 1 | Accept Everything Just the Way it is.

Musashi Precept 2 | Do not Seek Pleasure for its own sake

musashi principle 2


Musashi Precept 2 | Do not seek pleasure for its own sake.

Pleasure is a trap.

Pleasure is a white unicorn, farting rainbows as it bounds playfully like it’s hooves are made of springs through a luscious green meadow, looking behind, running forward, begging you to chase it. You do.

The unicorn shits gold bricks. You pick them up as you approach the beast. Greedy as you are, you… reach inside. You want more gold. One bar isn’t enough. You want to indulge yourself.

you feel a tightness overtaking your hand, like a vice-grip crushing a watermelon until it pops. You open your eyes. There’s no unicorn – only a bear-trap.

The Pleasure trap

You’ll never get enough pleasure. Pleasure, like drugs, is addicting. No, let’s say pleasure is a drug instead.

Pleasure is smoking weed with your friend every weekend for sixteen years. The highlight of the weekend is the laughter you share while stumbling to the local 7/11, spending 13.42$ on enough snacks for a week, eaten in one night, playing xbox until the sun reminds you… you’re a loser.

Pleasure is a trap because it feels so good. Usually, pleasure is on-command. Discipline is hard. Discipline is the little white dot in the black Yang, indicating peace in a place of chaos.

Discipline doesn’t feel good in the moment.

It’s not instant like pleasure. No common-man wins a gold medal in the Olympics. It’s too hard. It actually requires waking up before noon, working, not playing video games, and a dedication which removes excuses and needs for a break-taking.

Shouldn’t life feel good?

It does, and yes, it should. But pleasure isn’t the answer to a fulfilled life. Pleasure is an empty life. Pleasurable lives are lives with regrets, and panic before death, because life existed in the moment, instead of in hopes & dreams. Or destiny.

An elderly man coming to terms with his life while staring into the white wall of the hospital from his bed, shitting in a pan, crying inside, and out. He boozed with the gents, raised a few kids, married his high-school sweetheart, and always showed up to work on time for a nice pat on the back from the boss and a raise every two years. He never did anything for himself. The man’s dream die’s when he does.

The thing about dreams, and one reason why they aren’t accomplished, is because people believe their dreams, are theirs.

They aren’t. 

Our dreams don’t belong to us. They belong to the world. Your dreams impact the lives of thousands – maybe millions.

Humanity is social: We’re better at caring for others than ourselves. If your dog needs to take a pill every day to heal her cancer, you’ll waterboard the drugs down her throat until she’s back in perfect health.

Doctors complain their patients don’t take their pills. People kill themselves for their darlings. 

It’s motivational to accomplish your dreams for someone else, instead of yourself. You can hate yourself all day. Telling yourself “How could you eat that burger. You’re a piece of shit.” You don’t flame your friends. Build your dreams for them.

Accomplish for your wife, god, your girlfriend, your parents, a mentor, or, someone you’ve never met before. Emma Watson. It doesn’t matter. Try giving the purpose of your dreams to someone else. It may give you the motivation you need to start. Once you start; rely on discipline. Motivation is fleeting and ineffective for the true professional.

Instead of pleasure – aim for satisfaction.

pleasure is purchased

Aim for satisfaction; what Musashi wanted. For his students: for us.

Satisfaction and pleasure are completely different – satisfaction pings after a challenge is completed. Pleasure is purchased – satisfaction is earned.

Satisfaction comes at different levels. Shooting six free-throws in a row is satisfaction; a little burst of dopamine to encourage your continued play. Finishing a 100 mile race over a twenty-four-hour window without sleep releases a flood of dopamine large enough to drown a small Asia-Pacific village.

Great accomplishment provide great satisfaction.

Life fulfillment through accomplishment.

Precept 2 | Do not seek pleasure for its own sake.

Musashi Precept 3 | Do not, under any Circumstances, Depend on a Partial Feeling

musashi 21 principles - principle 3


 

Musashi Precept 3 | Do not, under any circumstances, depend on a partial feeling.

Feelings change like the seasons.

You can’t depend on your feelings for anything. Control them as much as you can. Your emotions want to protect you, but, your brain is better at defending than your emotions. A better shield.

Your emotions are like a child. There isn’t a monster in the closet; you know this. Yet, the door is closed and behind it, a two-ton gigasaurous death-rex waits, ready to eat you the instant you close your eyes.

The world is a different place than our ancient ancestors world, akin to a Jurassic-Park forest. They needed emotions. We don’t.

You don’t need emotions to be a good person. Your actions, with or without emotions, determine who you are. Not what you say you are, but what you do.

Feelings, like seasons, come and go.

A farmer doesn’t rely on a good season for his crops. he rely’s on discipline, forged underneath black, tearing skies, inside shivering skin, outside from sun up, to moon up.

Discipline is the accumulation of little no’s and little yes’s.

Should I keep working? Yes.

Should I stop now and take a break? No.

The farmer can’t depend on good weather in a cold place. The world is as cold of place as Pluto. Sometimes.

Depending on your emotions is disastrous to your growth

Emotions are unreliable - musashi 21 rules - rule 3

A wannabe DJ who depends on motivation instead of discipline, spends 2-4 hours a week training his art. You can’t call it an art. He calls himself a DJ but doesn’t make music. Instead, he takes breaks when he comes home from his day job, because he’s too tired to sit in a chair and create art.

The disciplined, hungry savage spends 12 hours ever Saturday creating music. He gets the call from the record company. He plays the shows. The hungry savage is disciplined. Women flock to him because women love a passionate man. He never chases them. Instead, the hungry savage picks a potential mate like a sexy criminal lineup with six tens posing, and spinning, all for him.

The wannabe chases women.

Don’t chase women. They’re faster than you.

Before each short working session, the wannabe watches a motivational video. He doesn’t listen to power-speeches. Usually one isn’t enough. After the third or fourth, an hour and a half in like watching a Lord of the Rings movie, he gets 45 minutes of distracted creation while looking at the lives of better men on Instagram in shameful jealousy.

Why isn’t my life like that. I’m just not good enough.

Emotions are terrible because emotions are unreliable

Emotions are variables – they change.

  • You can’t work today because you’re sad.
  • You can’t focus because your angry.
  • You can’t pay your bills because you’re upset about the Football game and need a drink.

(emotional MANpon)

Discipline is different.

Discipline works like this:

  • I’m sad. I will work today because my path is my life, my muse, my lover. I will forget my pain through my self-induced suffering.
  • I’m angry. I work every day on my goals. I will work today.
  • I’m upset my Football team lost. I am my own hero. I don’t carry the losses of other men to heart or compare myself to their glory. I will work.
Discipline is a constant.

It never stops, like the Earth rotating around the sun. If the Earth was emotional, and didn’t have the motivation to move, were all dead.

like our lives without discipline.

We die.

Musashi Precept 3 | Do not, under any circumstances, depend on a partial feeling.


Musashi Precept 4 | Think Lightly of Yourself and Deeply of the World

musashi 21 principles - principle 4


Think lightly of yourself

Musashi Precept No.4 | Think lightly of yourself and deeply of the world

Thinking about yourself is pathetic.

The thinking mind is the ego mind – the ego is pathetic.

Your thinking mind doesn’t want you to succeed. Your thinking mind creates failure scenarios at moments of crucial change, like the final seconds of your high-school football championship game, screaming: “you’re not good enough.

Your mind is like a horse

It’s difficult to tame a horse, but, if you do, you’ll travel distances the walking man will never see. Your mind is your best weapon and your worst enemy. Your thoughts become your reality. When you believe your potential is limitless, you’re right. When you believe you’re the worst, most depressed, most unwanted scum of the Earth you are. It’s your choice – positive or negative thought.

A tame horse – a wild horse; like a typhoon.

Thinking of yourself is ego. Don’t think of you – exist through your your profession. Living in the moment, alone, is wrong. Living in the moment is pleasure.

Live in the moment: for tomorrow

Live in the moment to make tomorrow better. Improve by 1% every day. You’ll wake up a better man than you were yesterday. And more confident. Competent people are confident. Wanna become competent? Work for a few hours a day on something interesting. The inverse of improving by 1% is degrading by 1% – even more if your habits are bad enough, and in enough quantity.

This is your duty as a warrior. Improve by 1% every day.

Make a better version of yourself for tomorrow.

You exist through your profession

professon

Your profession is your path. What you dedicate your life too. Musashi dedicated his life to warfare – he lived a good life. He traveled far down his path, victory after victory, student after successful student, war after war. Everything Musashi learned related to his path. He never strayed from the way.

The best books on Musashi

The Farther you travel, the happier you’ll be.

Your profession is your path. Achievement makes humans happy. People like to grow. To look back at earlier work, reflecting on how terrible you used to be(you were never bad, there are levels).

The farther you travel, the happier you’ll be. Self-fulfillment through accomplishment.

The World isn’t a bad place.

The world isn’t a depressing place. But your mind is. If you’re caught in the chaos, trapped in your thoughts, get out as fast as you can – your mind is ruthless.

Most of the depressed are in their heads.

Get out of your head and into the world. Stop thinking about yourself. Think of the world and the many cogs controlling your behavior; your habits.

Musashi Precept 4 | Think lightly of yourself and deeply of the world.


 

Musashi Precept 5 | Be Detached From Desire your Whole Life Long

musashi 21 principles - principle 5


Be detatched from desire

Precept 5 | Be Detached from desire your whole life long.

Desire is a sensation of wanting something that requires work, without having the will to get it. Like a call-center employee, without discipline, and a poster of a Ferrari hanging on the ceiling-tile colored-wall of his faceless cubicle. He wants to drive. He doesn’t try.

An exotic car is the reward for thousands of 13-hour work-days while friends post photos drinking in the same bar their fathers frequented daily, after work. The people who drive Ferrari’s don’t look at motivational pages – they make them.

Winners don’t look at photos of girls on Instagram. Either.

Desire is the toxic form of ambition.

The weak man has desires. He wants all the rewards with none of the work. He doesn’t understand: The work is the best part of the process. Celebration means nothing.

The Andreian pursues improvement. He reaps the rewards later. The beautiful women, increased confidence, more status, more money. The sufferings you endure produce the rewards you deserve. How much suffering you’re willing to tolerate often determines how much success you’ll receive.

The Opposite of Desire is Ambition

musashi rule 4

Stop Wanting – Anything.

Feed your ambition. Create more. You already have everything you need. All the answers are inside you.

Chasing desire is chasing a pair of red keys to your Lamborghini while running on a treadmill at 13x speed. You won’t go forward. You won’t get closer. Eventually you’ll fall, and, give up.

You don’t need anything.

Add value to the world

Add value to the world instead of taking and consuming. Be ambitious. Within each of us, even you, is some form of greatness begging to manifest in the world, delivered through your fingertips. The greatness begs to be free. You feel it.

The more value you create the better your rewards.

Desire is Entitlement

You don’t get what you want. You get what you kill – what you earn for yourself.

Most of the world embraces pleasure. The courageous embrace suffering; courageous people carry the burden of pain for the weak. The courageous, therefore, get what they want; a real challenge – while reaping the benefit of luxury; what weak individuals crave more than the breath in their lungs.

Andreians lean in; to suffering. The andreian understands front-loading suffering today, brings peace tomorrow. Front-loading your suffering, refusing desires, makes tomorrow better for the world, and your legacy.

Things don’t make us happy. Accomplishments do.

What do you want to be remembered for?

Precept 5 | Be Detached from desire your whole life long.


 

Musashi Precept 6 | Do not Regret what you have done

musashi 21 principles - principle 6


musashi rule 6

Musashi Precept  6. | Do not regret what you have done.

If someone is depressed, they’re living in the past. This person is covered in a thick layer of regret. Or, they live in nostalgia, craving the “good old days”, when responsibilities were few and beers were many. The nostalgic never leave their home town, and hang out with the same people they spun locker combinations with in High school

Everything you did Yesterday Makes you Stronger Today

Your past was suffering. The future is yours to determine. Nearly everyone shares a shameful, or regretful past with you. Depression is regret never addressed.

The spoiled few, driving BMW’s, popping xanax like sunflower seeds at a minor league baseball game, never amount to anything in life – they don’t know how to suffer.

Depressed people never let go of suffering.

They never let go of the past.

The strong suffer. Later, they absorb the lesson, and reflect upon their suffering to become better men. These men never shame themselves. Confident men make mistakes then thank their idols for another chance, tomorrow.

The depressed have negative self-talk conversations. Self-talk is a conversation you have with yourself when no one else is around. Self-talk is the reaction after failure – I’ll do better next time – or – I’m a useless failure.

The depressed regret everything they’ve done. Their negative self-talk reflects this; depressed people never forget their mistakes. Instead of forgiveness, then, working hard to get what they want, the depressed assume they don’t deserve what they want. They’ll usually give up after one try. Or, after the first minor setback on their path.

The depressed can’t tolerate failure

Confident men understand failure is a utility. Failure is the best way to learn. Failure is motivating. Samurai, after defeat, are hungrier than ever. Confident men treat themselves like someone they’re supposed to care about, like a child, or a close friend.

Become your own Best Friend

musashi rule 6

Think about how you’ve talked to yourself in the past. “You shouldn’t have let those bullies kick you in the mud. You’re the biggest pussy on earth.”

Remember two summers ago when your boss asked you to work on your honeymoon and you agreed? What the fuck is wrong with you! Stand up for your damn self sometime.”

You wouldn’t call your best friend a failure – what gives you the right to talk to yourself like that?

Forgive Yourself from your Past

People hate themselves but they don’t have to. You won’t be free to transform into your best-self until you’re forgiven; by you. Your past is a sturdy foundation of mistakes; don’t start from the bottom – start from the top of your lessons.

Love yourself. Don’t spoil yourself. Think about yourself as a child again. Children, like adults, learn everything through failing, and trying. If an infant gave up after the first 100 falls learning to walk, no one would be standing today. Most of us barely make it to 20 failures. Children haven’t learned to hate themselves yet.

Forgive yourself.

Musashi Precept  6. | Do not regret what you have done.


 

Musashi Precept 7 |Never be Jealous

musashi 21 principles - principle 7


musashi rule 7

Musashi Precept 7 | Never be jealous.

After a certain age, you can’t compare yourself to others. You’re too different – you have too much experience. The landscape is different for everyone once you leave the nest.

Different households produce different kids.

You compare yourself against your peers in grade-school. You should. You aren’t a person yet. However, different households produce different kids. Most people, still carry the belief they need to compare themselves to their peers as adults. Let go.

Behind the veil

behind the veil

Don’t be jealous of the neighbors new car.

They took a personal loan out for the Range Rover because their credit is dead – dead like Bowie, and costs 21% interest per year. Average people who buy luxury items want you to be jealous. They don’t understand all the answers are inside – like you do.

.

People are like icebergs

You see the Iceberg’s beautiful peak, gently peaking out from the cold, ice-fragment spotted Arctic sea.

The range Rover is the peak of the iceberg. Below the visible mass, The extent of the Iceberg lives. Unseen, below almost-black waters, rarely seen. People are more complex than they appear. You see less than 1% of a person and, even less of their true self because people project how they want to be seen; not who they are.

The neighbor wants you to know he’s rich. Really, he has more debt than the united states of America. He smiles and waves. Washing her. He pays more attention to that car than his wife – or children. Below the surface of the Range Rover, the iceberg below, rots away. He’s dying on the inside; like a tree infested with termites.

Compare yourself to who you were yesterday

Sports are a competition against yourself; not the other team. Games are won during practice. The game is a display of how practiced a team, or fighter is. Preparation wins. Not playing.

Athletes don’t need to beat their opponents. They need to beat their fears. Athletes are Alaskans looking for baby seals to club; kill all the fears.

If you’re prepared – you don’t worry

Even if you fail, there’s no shame; you did everything right. After a loss, take account of your shortcomings and analyze: what could have gone better?

Guilt only comes if you do the wrong thing; and you know it. Moving against the muse. Calling in sick when you should practice.

Forget what someone else has. Compete with the man you were yesterday. Become 1% better every day. You don’t know someone else’s journey, you only see the tip of their ice berg. Not who they are, you can’t compare yourself against them.

You know who you were yesterday.

Beat that guy today.

Musashi Precept 7 | Never be jealous.


 

Musashi Precept 8 | Never let Yourself be Saddened by a Separation

musashi 21 principles - principle 8


Saddened by a seperation

Musashi Precept 8 | Never let yourself be saddened by a Separation

You don’t own anything except yourself.

You don’t own your wife–even if you’re married.

You don’t know anyone either. Except yourself; if you’re lucky. The deep, introspective types are rare. Even if you are one, understanding yourself is difficult.

Humans are complex.

If humans operated on logic they’d be less complex. Emotions complicate our choices. Humans are still emotional, like animals, because a long time ago emotions kept us safe from a world much different than the one we live in now.

Emotions like the flight or fight response, are outdated human operating systems like an old school Razer flip-phone today. Out systems aren’t designed for TV’s and virtual reality.

No one can Rely on Their Emotions

Your wife may leave you because her emotions command her to go.

Your son runs away from home because you’re an asshole dad who won’t let your boy get Straight F’s while he hangs-out with his smelly stoner friends regularly.

Your boss fires you even though you work harder than him and have been with the company longer.

Fine.

  • You don’t own your wife. You married her.
  • You don’t own your son. You birthed him from your balls.
  • You don’t own your job. You were contracted to another man to help him build his legacy as he walks on your face up the stairs to the penthouse.

You Control how you Perceive Everything

musashi-code-8

Marcus Aurelius, ancient stoic, spoke often: ‘we control our perception to things. Not things themselves.’

It doesn’t matter what happens. What matters is your response to situations. We all have free will–free to decide our attitudes towards all things; nothing could be better. Even if you’re broke, homeless, or still living with your mom; you decide your attitude towards your circumstances. Those who exude confidence, before challenge; instead of fear, are the few who change the world. The rest of us live under the changes of creators.

Few Change the World – the Rest Live in it

A handful of people change the world. The inventors, the creators, the dreamers and the fighters. The rest? They live with the choices of the great few. Want your say? DO more. Be more. hiding from the world, says you’re meaningless to the world.

Responding to Tragedy

Control your reactions.

Your wife left you.

Good. She was too old, and, never blew you anyway.

Your son ran away.

Good. He’ll see what the world looks like as a failure. There is no future for the lazy. He’ll have to work hard–to survive. He left the nest. He could come back, begging to move back in–once he sees the true-nature of the world and it’s cruelty.

Your boss fires you.

You hated that job. You’re no longer stressed. You perceive your firing, no different than a doctor removing a potato-sized tumor from your brain. You start the company you’ve always wanted. You make money. You’re happy.

You can cry or you can thrive.

Own what you can: your perception. Continue walking on the path while the losers on the side cry, hate, and wait to die.

Musashi Precept 8 | Never let yourself be saddened by a Separation


 

Musashi Precept 9 | Resentment and Complaint are Appropriate for Neither Oneself or others

musashi 21 principles - principle 9


musashi principle 9

 Musashi Precept 9 | Resentment and complaint are appropriate neither for oneself or others

Complainers never win.

Neither do critics. Or haters.

You have two choices against problems: Stare, and wallow in self-pity, watching others solve their problems, while you cry; hating them for having some type of “privilege”, resenting their talent–or; turn your mind off and solve your problems.

Happiness isn’t the meaning of life

Happiness is a Christmas present with red wrapping and a green bow. Happiness doesn’t come around often; feels good when it does. Happiness is a terrible milestone to base your performance on. Or, alternatively, to base your position in life upon how happy you feel. Happiness waits on the other side of obstacles.

Every challenge you face is a dragon sitting inside a castle. Once you kill the dragon, if you kill the dragon, the gold is yours. Most people see the dragon and quit. Be different. Look at your fears as a trail of M&M’s leading you somewhere fresh. Eat your fears along the way.

Happiness is short-form enjoyment–pleasure: here for a moment and gone too soon.

Instead of being happy – be content

You don’t need Ecstasy–you need content. When all is right in your community. That’s when your content. When there’s no debt to pay. No one owns you, except, maybe an employer, but you have enough savings to handle anything.

Happiness leaves. Happiness leaves holes. Happiness is the shovel breaking the earth, but never putting anything to fill the holes. Later, thousands of holes remind you of how you once felt; but don’t feel now.

Being content is different. Contentment is the sky–always there, but you won’t see until you look up. Optimism. It’s impossible to be content with a sour attitude.

Happiness is a garden mole.

musashi principle 9-2

Happiness springs up from the ground like a geyser of dirt, in the front yard, your conscious mind. Sometimes the back; your subconscious mind. Sometimes we’re happy and we don’t know why. Happiness comes for a moment. Then, gone. A permanent reminder of the happiness you once had. Now, all that’s left is a mess.

Happiness often leaves a mess, like taking your girlfriend out to eat to enjoy a meal together. Later, checking your credit balance–another 200$ added to your growing pile of debt.

Content never leaves us.

No one can take your contentment away from you. Because, being content comes from within. You’re satisfied. You don’t have many highs, and you don’t have any lows. All of your high comes from achievement. Your content with your work and your life. No chaos. Everything in it’s place.

Jordan Peterson is an expert on what it means to have a chaotic life.

Complainers want to be Happy

Complainers won’t reach happiness because happiness is illusive. Complainers want to own happiness; they can’t. No one owns happiness. All of us own our contentment. But, we need to want to be content to have it.
SmileDirectClub

The content man walks his path, like Musashi, without complaint, ready for all the challenges. All the dragons. He passes the crybaby, still living in his hometown, while walking the path. The content man doesn’t need happiness–he works instead.

Musashi Understood Negativity is a Disease

musashi principle 9-3

  • The jealous man complains about his peers.
  • The lost man complains about himself.
  • The hopeless man complains about the world.

Never complain. If you complain, you are too anxious. In your head; not in a good way. Musashi said: ‘Too many mind‘. To be the best self, turn off your mind.

Complaining about others shows your desire to be like them. Or, they’re stronger than you, and you’re afraid. Don’t think about others. Don’t think about yourself. The only purpose for your mind is assistance along your path. Wherever it may take you. Most of the places you’ll visit, don’t need a mind to experience. Your mind may make you worse off. Don’t think. Be.

Musashi Precept 9 | Resentment and complaint are appropriate neither for oneself or others


Musashi Precept 10 | Do not let Yourself be Guided by the Feelings of Lust or Love

musashi principle 10


 Musashi Precept 10 | Do not let yourself be guided by the feeling of lust or love 

In the movie Troy, Paris, a prince, falls in love with Helen, a beautiful woman betrothed to a Spartan king. Paris is young and foolish. Paris let’s logic sit outside while love enters through the front door with an RPG. Destruction comes when love drives. His lust sends two countries to war and results in the death of his brother.

Love makes men do terrible things.

Love sends countries to war. Love crumbles great empires beneath the tremendous weight of lust. Love is often lust in disguise with rationalization People are masters of rationalizing what they want. It didn’t matter to Paris if Helen was married–soon to be. It didn’t matter how many of Paris’s people would die fighting for his willingly kidnapped lover. Paris cared more about the flesh of his bride, a woman he knew for days, than the people who paid tax for his castle in the stars.

Millions die from love.

musashi rule 10

Love goes beyond person to person. People fall in love with their ideas or the ideas of others. Think about Communism–the worst economic experiment ever conducted.

Some wannabe inventor believes he has the next revolution in phonebooks–the Redpages. The inventor believes the yellow pages are dead because they’re yellow. He falls in love with his idea. It’s not technology destroying phonebooks; it’s the color of the phonebooks.

People crave the easiest way to accomplish their needs; that’s why fast-food is so popular. Cooking meals takes time. Restaurants involve interacting with a server, waiting for your food, locked across from another human in a booth no bigger than a red England phonebooth.

Everyone has social anxiety. You don’t even have to leave your house anymore. You can order whatever food you want delivered to your doorstep. Fast food is easy. You don’t even have to say hello. Order your food, pull forward, throw some money through the window.

The inventor thinks his idea is genius. He loves his idea so much he refuses to acknowledge nobody wants phonebooks anymore–we have smartphones. The inventor pours hundreds of thousands of dollars into his failed idea, like a John spending thousands on a prostitute for time, not sex, thinking he’s in love.

Deaths from Communism

Love for an idea, like Communism, or love for a person, like Paris falling in love with Helen.

Communist regimes have killed approximately 100 million people. 

Some college professors, leaning liberal, and non-academics are Communists. Fools. They’re in love with the idea. they refuse to research the holes sinking their ideas into the sea.

Communism doesn’t work. Communism never worked. Even China, one of the largest Communist countries, is experiencing exponential growth switching to a capitalist-style of trade; in contrast to Mao, who brought his country to its knees during a famine killing over forty million.

Communism isn’t better than capitalism. We know this. Until a better model materializes capitalism is the greatest economic system in the modern world.

Lust Makes men irrational

Love makes men & boys irrational. Love makes a man leave his job, his home, to move across the country for a woman he barely knows. Or steal exotic cars to impress girls in high school. But he loves her. Love means nothing.

Loyalty is the true champion of love. Love is ambiguous–it can mean anything. Trust is the ultimate indication of love. Men, the true romantics, let their partners disrespect them, act unfaithfully and walk all over them. All for love.

Love isn’t a feeling. Love is an agreement. I take care of you–you take care of me. Without trust love is lust.

Breakups destroy the hearts of men

Breakups destroy men. Some men have trust issues from women they dated in high-school. Love is a trap. Once in love, you’re irrational. You’ll do anything for your lover; Even if your actions come at the cost of your health.

The more you love someone, something, the more influence this person or thing has over you. For example: If you love your path more than anything else, and your path is film, you’ll put film above all. Instead of going out on the weekend, you’ll manifest your love for film–watching, creating, and dreaming.

Love and hate are the same. The people who go out to clubs every weekend, or worse, the barflies hitting happy hour every weekday hate being alone, and love attention. Same concept. Falling in love or drowning in hate are terrible places to be; you have no control. Pick your loves carefully.

Love takes you off the course of your path

Your path, your destiny, is your true love. Your path will never leave you. Your talents never go. The time you spend locked away in the tower: your office, grinding out a sentence to end your screenplay for days, is crucial for development–not love. Your path is a muse. You love her because she completes you. Nothing makes you feel better than accomplishment.

Fall in love with your muse. Caress your destiny every day. Kiss her neck. Bite her ear. Spank that ass. Give destiny your spankings. Don’t fall in love with variables–what you cannot control. You’ll never control another person.

Hopeless romantics: there is no such thing as a soul-mate. Take this: Your ‘soul-mate’ gains fifty pounds and stops going down on you–How quick do you find another soul-mate? Damn quick.

Loving your muse is hard. But your destiny will never leave you. The beauty of having a purpose is control: your purpose is your control. You’ll never control your life like you’ll control creative projects birthed into the world from your mind. From your hands. Give birth, man.

Musashi loved his path

True love. Love of duty, your destiny, your honor.  Many men, great men, fall in love with women who want nothing more than to see them destroyed, flayed open on a medieval torturer’s-rack, soul exposed to the world.

Musashi never fell in love with a woman. That’s not completely true. We don’t know. He never spoke about it.We know Musashi’s true love–swordplay. Musashi is the greatest swordsman ever to live. That means something. Musashi loved harder than Ryan Gosling in the Notebook.

Musashi didn’t love a woman–he loved his path. He was the best swordsman because he loved combat. True love. Every day he caressed his lover, giving the muse more of himself; she gave him a title.

Find your destiny. Love her with more emotion than you’ve experienced for anyone. The more you love yourself, your path, and your destiny the more the muse rewards you. Work every day. Be a machine, like Musashi, training every day.

 Musashi Precept 10 | Do not let yourself be guided by the feeling of lust or love 


Musashi Precept 11 | Do not let Yourself be Guided by the Feelings of Lust or Love

musashi 21 principles - principle 11


in all things have no preference

 Musashi Precept 11 | Do not let yourself be guided by the feelings of lust or love.

Everything & everyone you touch will disintegrate. Nothing remains constant; except change. Your new car is outdated in five years. It’s not your favorite anymore. Your smartphone, outdated after a year.

Preference is desire for choice. Like a Cigar aficionado. He only smokes tobacco leaves rolled by Cuban hands growing from exquisite soils in an American-banned-travel company.

Preference is a trap.

Preference limits your experience. Musashi wanted to pass this philosophy to his students. Then to you, through this site. Don’t allow yourself to become so cultured simple pleasures lose their appeal. Macaroni & cheese is good at any age; so is Taco Bell & panda express. We get it; you eat your chicken boiled. You’re a discipline warrior. Don’t forget to enjoy your life.

More preference | less flexibility.

People with preferences are weak. They can’t adapt to change–the only constant. Preferenced-people can’t travel far. Their single know, and want, is the sweet comforts of Mama’s cozy cast-iron meals served at the family table since Papa worked in a lumber mill without electricity.

Preference exists within your comfort zone. Your comfort zone is a cozy, little coffin waiting to bury you. It’s preferable to eat food you know you’ll like. Traveling to Egypt, without Mama’s meals is hard. Mama’s meals–it’s all you know.

Adventures’ have no expectations. Expectations imply an understanding of where you’re going. The point of adventure is facing the unknown; the dragons inside the castle high on the hill. You have a goal but no understanding of the path to get there but you keep walking anyway.

Musashi was a traveling swordsman. He left his village to find opponents to challenge him. He never sought easy victories–he sought to challenge warriors who could force Musashi to become a better fighter. His intentions weren’t victory. Musashi wanted transcendence to higher levels of combat prowess.

Most of Musashi’s adversaries lost before unsheathing their swords. Musashi was cunning. His deadliest weapon was his mind, not his sword. He once killed a man, beating him to death with a long, wooden oar. His opponent couldn’t reach him. Musashi’s mind was a long-range weapon capable of dethroning kings and slaughtering entire civilizations if he chose.

Preferences breed attachment

preference breeds attachment

Attachments are terrible weaknesses. Nothing is constant except change. Attachment tries to fight change, akin to fighting a hurricane by throwing rocks. Soon the rocks return to strike, harming you, completely avoided by not having an attachment in the beginning.

Everyone you know will die. Everything you own will break. All of your relationships will end. Permanence is a myth, or a fairy-tale–a fucking lie. Even the earth will crumble like a brittle cookie falling off the counter, shattering into pieces against a black linoleum floor. The sun will burn out like a light bulb in an old Victorian house, covering the space in a deep, depressing darkness no light can reach.

The way of the world is change. Preference is the arch-rival of change. It’s difficult to swim up a river. It’s easy to let the river carry you through the day gently downstream, floating on your back, inhaling the changing scenery while reminiscing about lessons learned along the way. You can’t outrun change but you can pace along.

Preference is stagnant

Preference is a swamp. Nothing changes. The swamp is dangerous and smells as if the mud-floor contains the corpses of millions of dead dreams.

have no preferences musashi rule 10

A river is different. The water is pure. You can see the bottom of the river. You can feel where the river takes you, changing, and growing. The river isn’t poisoned with preference but filtered by change.

If you have preferences, you aren’t willing to change. If you don’t change, you fall behind, joining the other lost hearts at the bottom of the swamp paying bills, selling insurance.

Never fall behind. Never forget the path.

Be like water. Formless.

 Musashi Precept 11 | In all things have no preference 


 

Musashi Precept 12 | Be Indifferent to Where you Live

musashi 21 principles - principle 12


musashi principle 12

Musashi Precept 12 | Be indifferent to where you live

Potential is limitless.

Brian Imanuel, an 18-year-old from Malasia spent most of his time online. Nearly every hour he could, he said. Brian watched thousands of hours of Vlogs: people talking about their lives on youtube, sensationalizing a trip to Chipotle resulting in world war 3, 4, and 5. He scoured reddit. He learned English. To an American kid, Brians’ wasting his time. Brian didn’t speak English. He taught himself.

Brian now calls himself Rich Brian. Brian is a rapper now. And a damn good one too. He didn’t need to live in America to make it because potential is limitless no matter where you live.

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Brian didn’t need America, to make it in America. But how? The great equalizer. The internet. Stronger than Trump’s wall and the Great Wall of China. The internet knocks down the doors to Troy without a giant wooden horse.

Brian spent every hour he could online. He worked until the bones of his fingers shone through the thin layer of skin left on his hands worn from billions of keystrokes. Brian fell in love with his work. His Muse. Now he reaps the gold-bar-benefits of devotion to his queen. His queen is the work.

Who is Brian Imanuel?

Watch this interview for more of Brians’ story. Hot Ones is a brilliant concept: interview notable people while eating hot wings together. Each wing is spicier than the last. Each wing walks the guests’ defenses back another line. You can’t have a fake personality while a mouth full of tiny-devils jab their ghost-pepper pitchforks into your tongue.

If you’re stuck – you’re blind

Today there’s no excuse for being a loser–the internet– is the great equalizer. Rich Brian can earn more money in an hour from Malasia, rapping, than an MBA-schooled accountant in a typical American underpaid fifty-hour workweek.

It doesn’t matter where you live. It didn’t matter before the internet. Potential is infinite. The clever always find a way to achieve their means.

Your mind sets your values

sharp mind musashi rule 12

Why do some people hate where they live? There’s nothing wrong with where they live. Some people have the wrong thoughts; living in the same town for years–so what? You could call it a trap. Or, change your mind to something valuable. See your prison as an opportunity for challenge to break out.

Your hometown is comfortable, like a worn pair of boots, leather molded to a perfect cast of your foot. Your hometown has family, friends, and a support network just in case anything were to happen you couldn’t handle alone.

You can believe, where you are, right now, is where you should be: because it is. You’re outside of the present if you want to be somewhere else, and you’ll never solve the problems here if you’re mind is… there.

You lose control of the present when your mind is outside. Living in the future or the past takes away your chances to change the present for the future. The future changes based on the actions you take now. Hating where you live won’t change your future.

Resent kills motivation. Hate is poisonous. Hate no-one, even your enemies. Instead turn your enemies into challenges, Rubix cubes waiting for a solution.

You need motivation to start. Later, discipline and love for the muse carries an adventurer the rest of the way.

If you can read – you’re spoiled.

musashi rule 12

781 million people can’t read. 491 million are women.[1] An internet connection and reading skill are privileges worthy of a god. If you can read, you can do anything using the internet.

How will the rice farmer in China who can’t read his language start a fitness blog? How will he use the internet without electricity? How will he scale a business and produce a profit greater than a few bowls of rice a day for his family?

Your life isn’t hard. You can read. Billions live in underdeveloped countries, shitting in the streets, sharing meals with thirteen other families in a 200 square foot glorified cabinet called home.

Musashi was a traveling swordsman

Every village he traveled to gave Musashi a new edge for future opponents. Musashi didn’t need to stay in one place to be happy. But he never overstayed his welcome. Once he learned what he could in one village Musashi left for the next one.

Many people believe they need to leave their hometowns to evolve. True. But most people haven’t tapped a sliver of the potential where they are now.

Don’t turn from the potential here. No matter your circumstances you can always take steps down your path. Your mind is the sharpest sword you own. Try planning for the future. No one stops your training except you.

Your attitude determines your development regardless if you’re living in Los Angeles or Los Alamos.

Musashi Precept 12 | Be indifferent to where you live


Musashi Precept 13 | Do not Pursue the Taste of Good Food

musashi 21 principles - principle 13


musashi principle 13

Musashi Precept 13 | Do not pursue the taste of good food

Good food takes your discipline.

Pleasure today feels terrible tomorrow. It’s easy to consume a full bag of Skittles washed down with Red mountain dew. It’s hard to look in the mirror, ten years later, and see a former athlete with man boobs. Bellies stretch to accommodate bad habits.

Eating broccoli and chicken is hard. Preparing, cooking, and tracking your macronutrients; seasoning your mouth out of the cardboard taste of boiled chicken–fitness is hard. But chicken gets you abs. Abs gain confidence. You want confidence and abs.

You don’t want the skittles; you want to feel better. The easiest way to feel better is to eat skittles. But it’s not the best way to feel better. Eating skittles makes people feel better, but pleasure never lasts. Pleasure is a rainbow: enjoyed for an hour, or a little longer, then poof. Pleasure is gone. Pleasure never lasts.

Satisfaction is different than pleasure. Satisfaction requires front-loading your suffering to make a better, more permanent future. Satisfaction never leaves; work now to reap future benefits–forever.

The current CEO was the 16-hour work day twenty-year-old who worked alone, instead of playing with friends; chasing tail and lifting weights with bad form to impress gym-bunnies in committed relationships with older men.

Good food develops taste

Having taste is a weakness. Refer to Musashi’s 11th principle: In all things have no preference. Nothing belongs to you. You can’t afford to have preference. Preference taxes the soul when inevitable losses take away an ill-believed, guaranteed lifestyle. You are guaranteed nothing.

The corporate executive loses all his wealth in a pump and dump scheme gone wrong. Ten more grey hairs. Ten more points of cholesterol. He’s suicidal and drowning in high blood pressure. His wealth is everything to him. “Why, why, is the world so cruel to me,” he screams, sitting on heated seats inside a Mercedes costing nearly as much as America’s defense budget. The cruel world took what was his. Nothing belonged to him. One day the universe asked for tax. The universe always gets her payment.

From Morton’s steakhouse to Macaroni and cheese. People with preference can’t take a loss. They’re too fragile. Most of life involves taking hits and bouncing back. The fearful cling to their current form of life. What else would a non-adventurer do? They have nothing else.

Good food makes you lethargic

fat boy musashi principle 13

We eat more than anytime before. Our ancestors are rolling in their graves. We roll in motorized scooters. In many parts of the country, people are still starving. Starving children die every die in countries outside of America. Americans die by the thousands from hearts clogged with Splenda.

Imagine trying to explain the concept of Obesity to someone unfamiliar with the American monster; “So you’re telling me, you have so much food, you eat until you’re dead? Why wouldn’t you share it and live? So others can live too?” Imagine working fourteen hours a day for a bowl of rice and maggots, who, want the rice as bad as you do, while listening to an American complain Starbucks is out of seasonal drinks.

Thanksgiving

After celebrating Thanksgiving, families waddle like emperor penguins on ice from the dining table, searching for a couch, a bed, even a small section of carpet on the floor for a nap. We eat ourselves into exhaustion. What. The. Fuck–is that about.

Overeating causes lethargy. Nearly every American over-eats. No wonder why our dreams are broken–it’s impossible to concentrate with a belly full of gravy and shame.

When you’re lethargic, work feels impossible–not just physical work; thinking too. After air-dropping a shipment of carbs down your gullet, you barely have the energy to keep your eyes open for the third binge-session of the Office. Another six hours of a Saturday, dreading work; while watching a show about… working at a paper company.

Musashi ate for fuel – not pleasure

You are what you eat. You are what your discipline allows. Musashi knew this. Professional athletes know this.

Many people look down on fat shaming, calling it cruel and indecent. Your body is an indication of your discipline–or how much you love yourself.

If you eat food bad for you; your body looks bad. If you take bad actions; your life becomes bad. So simple, yet, so difficult to grasp.

It’s easy to shuttle fudge into your face like a cartoon fat-man with his mouth held open with the jaws of life, at the end of a candy assembly line, devouring everything. Wrapper and all.

musashi rule 13

Fat people don’t have discipline. It’s obvious: look at them. It’s not hate speech to say it. We’re telling the truth, told by our eyes. It’s easy to gain fat–do nothing; eat everything. Its hard to gain muscle. You need to discipline yourself, and skip late-night runs to Taco Bell for antifreeze colored soda and barely-edible -for-dogs grade meat. Barely animal, mostly science.

Do not pursue the taste of good food

Do not pursue the taste of good food. Discipline decreases with every bite. Food is a vice; no different than cocaine, except it’s socially accepted to eat burgers in the mall. It’s not socially acceptable to rail lines of blow at the counter of Auntie Anne’s.

Food is an addiction. Look around. The big outnumber the lean. Maybe one day we’ll have a civil war: fit against fat. A lean, muscular body is a status symbol.

Discipline first. Your path is everything.

Musashi Precept 13 | Do not pursue the taste of good food


Musashi Precept 14 | Do not Hold onto Possessions you no Longer Need

musashi 21 principles - principle 14


musashi principle 14

Musashi Precept 14 | Do not hold onto possessions you no longer need

The more you own – the more you’re owned

Every possession occupies a little sliver of your mind. The hoarder can’t see anything except their things–there’s no space to think. The mind can’t breathe, suffocated with thousands of belongings, hoarders can’t track everything they own. They don’t know how much they own. Instead, the gather more. They gather as much as they can. No more trash; It’s all gold.

Owning too much spreads your attention too thin. It’s useless having too much, like splitting a piece of gum into five pieces to share: no one has anything.

Owning too much is like taking the gum and stretching it as far as it can go. There’s no depth–only width. No meaning to speak of, no purpose to feel. Stretch far enough, and the gum snaps.

Some possessions were better without

A laptop with a broken battery dies every ten minutes. Why keep it? To save money? What about saving time, the only non-renewable resource? Every time a test is taken, ten minutes, and done. Time to start again. The work suffers because of the frugality. The money is better spent to save the time.

Most of what we think we need, we don’t. The addict thinks he needs cigarettes because they’re… ‘his’ cigarettes. Lung cancer needs cigarettes too. Some people spend their hard-earned money to die faster than their elderly neighbors.

What about childhood belongings, or, childhood habits? The median age for video gamers is 35.[1] If you’re over thirty, or better, over 13, why do you need to play pretend? Dancing around in an enchanted forest, wearing green tights, slaying monsters in a large field with the ultimate sword, hand stuck down the pants–still alone. There’s more to life than this. There has to be.

video game nerd - musashi

Let go. Think beyond what you own. Think about all the habits you carry from previous chapters of your story. What habits do you carry from childhood that hurt you? Caring about what others think? That depends. Some people need to care what others think more. If all of your friends think you’re lazy it means one of two things: You’re lazy, or you need new friends.

Holding onto belongings because they’re familiar

It’s easy to hold on to possessions no longer needed: that’s why people do it; people like easy. Unconsciously, no one leaves their comfort zone. There isn’t a reason to leave.

We all need to find our why. What, are we willing to suffer for? Why? You need a reason to hurt. Because, change hurts.

When everything is fine, change stalls. But, not changing means you’re falling behind, because doing nothing is doing something.

A job isn’t technically a possession, but you own it. That’s a lie: you lease a job. Your work can be taken from you anytime your employer doesn’t require your work anymore. Would companies give out medical insurance if they didn’t have to? Most wouldn’t. Sadly.

A business is more secure than a job because you retain control. You might fail. A business is more difficult than a job, too. But think about this: What has the easy-road ever done for you? The easy way creates more regret, and more tears to wet the hospital pillow of your deathbed than accomplishing your dreams.

Don’t hold onto anything longer than you need. Be merciless. Cut the fat off the meat. Daily.

Cutting off the fat

Always upgrade–always change. You can’t stop change. But you can tame it. If you aren’t changing; you’re wrong. You’re always changing because the world moves while you sit: you’re falling behind while not improving.

For every hour you’re taking a break, someone else decided not to. Andreians, the few individuals who understand fulfillment comes from accomplishment, don’t stop walking their paths until their feet wear away. Left without a way to travel, Andreians crawl.

Don’t stop. Work until your hardwood table becomes a pillow for your exhaustion. Break your body done for a cause greater than a nine-to-five job.

Musashi carried what he needed

Musashi carried what he needed. Two swords, some water, a little food; the clothing on his back, maybe a pencil or some equivalent, and a little paper to record his thoughts.

Musashi didn’t bring a paint brush. Or a canvas. Or a stand, to hold his canvas, while painting with his brush. Musashi was a Samurai–Samurai train in combat.

Musashi carries what a warrior needs. Musashi understood baggage slows the adventurer. The swordsman’s destiny is combat–why would he need a brush?

Your path is everything. Let go of baggage slowing down your passage to a better life. Netflix, your Xbox, your porn: None of these vices are etched into your tombstone, but your accomplishments will.

What else is holding you down?

Precept 14 | Do not hold onto possessions you no longer need


 

Musashi Precept 15 | Do not act Following Customary Beliefs

musashi 21 principles - principle 15


musashi principle 15

Musashi Precept 15 | Do not act following customary beliefs

Do not act following customary beliefs.

Customary beliefs are for the average person. Not for you. The path to happiness isn’t getting a job with retirement options; buying a house for a wife and child you never wanted; a few kids who grow to resent their overweight, balding, loser of a dad who just doesn’t get it.

Throw away customary beliefs. They belong in the trash with the rest of the waste.

Burn the beliefs of the public and from the ashes plant personal truths in fertile soil. Trust what you’re doing; trust in yourself.

No beliefs will make you happy like you’re own; you special, geometrically organized, little snowflake. There is no exception to the rule for Adventurers. Adventurers suffer under the thumb of Human Resources departments in faux-progressive corporations.

Most people are science experiments: little clones of each other, playing the same Candy Crush game, watching the same new episode of black mirror, thinking they’re intelligent because they have a Reddit account with more Karma than Gandhi feeding orphans popcorn. One day, a clone gets cancer. Then, all the clones buy corvettes after their mortality becomes clear.

Propaganda & You

musashi rule 15

Millions of people believe more than two genders exist. Last time we checked, the current number is 64 genders with more on the way, as if storks don’t deliver babies but new species, instead.

Gender has existed for 3.5 billion years. Before plants. Before multi-cell organisms. Before everything. Yet propagandists and brainwashed youth believe gender is a social construct: another make-believe term used to coerce normal folk into protesting with pink pussy hats. The same people who wouldn’t dare let their children see the kissing scene in a PG-13 movie.

getting a job will make you happy

The great white lie of the American dream. The purpose of a job is a tool for the American dreamer to build his vision on the backs of those foolish enough to take directions from everyone except themselves.

The CEO understands most people are cowards. He can pay them just enough to think they’re close to reaching happiness, but never enough to touch it, while paying for his second vacation home. This time, in some South American town with too many syllables to pronounce.

The traditional route isn’t destined for happiness because happiness is unique to the individual. Corporations have standards employees are required to abide by. You’re supposed to pretend, sitting there in your on-sale tie from Ross, clamped on too tight, pretending you don’t masturbate to anime porn, but instead, crave spreadsheets and writing emails like a dog craves sniffing other dog butts.

Musashi rule 15

Join the Wal-Mart team! What team? There are no sports. I can’t date anyone: It’s against policy, can’t be friends with them either. Human Resources, the principles of the adult world demand it so. Wal-Mart offers job seekers a place to die, who didn’t save enough for retirement and now, wait for the final heart attack while mopping up a bathroom covered in piss like a Jackson Pollock masterpiece.

Doing the same as everyone else–gets the same as everyone else; and no one is happy

Is the purpose of your life to fit in like a blank-faced mannequin, dressed in whatever someone dresses them up as?

A heart without passion, barely alive; a depressed mind longing for belonging, some purpose known to exist but never pursued–most people die without trying to live the life they wanted.

There’s a brutal saying that shreds the soul into ribbons: hell is when you meet the person you could have been. Nothing is worse than meeting the person you could have been in a dark alleyway, forced to make direct eye contact and squeeze by, touching, feeling, what you could have been.

Musashi followed his way

musashi principle 9-3

Musashi didn’t live like a Samurai; Musashi was a Ronin–a Samurai without a master. A shogun, the CEO of Samurai clan inc., can banish a Samurai, or die, leaving the Samurai without a master.

Ronin are shameful according to traditional Bushido, the way of the Samurai. Samurai are supposed to follow their Shogun into death, serving beyond the realm of the living, usually done by ritual suicide. Seppuku.

As an alternative to death Samurai could become hermits after taking the title of Ronin. This usually meant a Ronin was banished from his village, voluntarily, to spend the remaining days of his life in some mountain village surrounded by books, pink flowers; without a sword.

Musashi was Ronin but cared little about his status. Musashi didn’t follow customary beliefs. He followed his path. Ronin, a term from Bushido, meant nothing to Musashi, who followed his code instead of the code of the Samurai and look what became of him. Musashi is a legend; the greatest swordsman to ever live. He followed his truth, and his truth granted him status as a legend.

Don’t follow customary beliefs

Don’t follow customary beliefs if you want a life worthy of punching your only ticket on Earth. Do whatever you want to do–not what makes your boss hard.

It sounds easy to follow your truth. It’s not. Your family, strangers, your girlfriend, even your dog all want something for you. Most of these people believe they know what’s best for you too.

Weak people feel better about their lack of control by controlling those who least suspect it: the very people they call on their birthdays to say I love you. They will tell you how to live because it’s the only power they have to exercise, and exercising our power feels good.

Your power comes from your path. Like Musashi, and the great men before him. And the great men still unborn.

Musashi Precept 15 | Do not act following customary beliefs

Musashi Precept 16 | Do not Collect Weapons or Practice Beyond what is Useful

musashi 21 principles - principle 16


musashi principle 16

Musashi Precept 16. | Do not collect weapons or practice beyond what is useful

Weapons As tools.

This principle may seem unrelated. Most people don’t need for weapons. Even though the media turns school shooters into A-list celebrities, the world is the safest it’s ever been.

Think of weapons, in Musashi’s context as tools. Musashi’s weapons were his tools.

Wasting potential in a comfort zone

comfort zone musashi 16

If you want to write a novel: write a fucking novel. Taking creative writing classes for twenty hours a week from a failed novelist on the merits of character arcs doesn’t make you a writer: it makes you a fraud–like your teacher. You’ll learn how to become a writing workshop instructor. A failed novelist.

Writing novels is the only way to become a novelist. Nothing will help you succeed except doing what you want to do. The same goes for all other ventures. How are you avoiding what you want to do?

  • Don’t go to business school–start a business.
  • Don’t read books about how to be social–be social.
  • Don’t wait for the right opportunity–Make the right opportunity.

Taking classes seems like a brilliant idea because there isn’t any risk. You won’t feel the cold shiv of failure in your side when someone tells you: “I’m sorry. We’re not interested.” People hide from their dreams because they don’t want to experience rejection along their path to true belonging.

You don’t need much to get what you want

Kelly Slater, surfing god, doesn’t even need a surfboard. He shreds using a dining table. The tools don’t make the player. The experience does. A master transcends tools. He’s better than everyone, regardless of the quality of his tools. The tools become an extension of his hand. The master becomes part of his tool set, merging with the paintbrush, forgetting he exists, living through the art he paints.

A basketball player doesn’t need shoes to practice. He needs a ball. Sure, shoes help, but they aren’t necessary to the purpose. He doesn’t even need a hoop; the player can drill with a ball. How much do you need?

Trim your life down

The more baggage you have, the slower you move. You don’t need a 3ft sword if you understand how to use a 5ft one. This is the basis of a comfort zone. If it’s easy, you aren’t progressing. Easy isn’t adventurous. Easy is baking pies for the adventurer so he can slay the dragon while you slay apple cobbler. Who do you want to be? The supporter, shouting from the stands, or the player, feeding on the admiration of the crowd?

Musashi progressed in levels – leaving lower levels behind

Musashi trained with a weapon until he mastered it. Then the weapon is discarded like Christmas cards from 2007. Next, Musashi finds a weapon he doesn’t know how to use; or a longer sword.

The love of struggle never leaves a true adventurer. Struggle gives birth to meaning. Love your struggle. The common man avoids struggle–he avoids his greatness. The warrior embraces the challenge.

Find your battle and win.

 Musashi Precept 16. | Do not collect weapons or practice beyond what is useful


Musashi Precept 17 | Do not Fear DEATH

musashi 21 principles - principle 17


Musashi principle 17

Musashi precept 17 | Do not fear death

The Samurai do not fear death. Musashi, former samurai; ronin later, didn’t fear death –he couldn’t afford the luxury–his profession was combat. If Musashi feared death like all the men who stood before him; he would have died like them.

The Samurai advise dying over living. Death was the answer to every problem–a ritual passage to another realm. Samurai often followed their master in death by ritual suicide or become hermits and isolate themselves far away from their village. Becoming a hermit was spiritual death. The Former Samurai gives up war, waiting to die somewhere off in the mountains of Japan.

If you fear death you fear living.

You won’t live if you fear death. You can’t carry a love of life while holding a fear of death above your head like a dark cloud waiting to strike lighting at the point of your spine, a wind vane for anxiety.

People who fear death attach to pleasure because pleasure and a fear of death both live for today, to sacrifice tomorrow. Satisfaction occurs when you sacrifice pleasure in the moment for an exponentially better future.

Cowards fear missing out on pleasure. They see work as a waste of time or; they see work as a parent, telling the coward he isn’t good enough.

The coward manifests self-loathing through thousands of hours seated in front of a screen, eating food, clogging arteries worse than a clogged toilet after a night of binge drinking and 2 am Taco Bell.

Fear Death | Or Treasure life

fear death or treasure life

You can’t treasure life holding a fear of death. Let go of any attachments to life and you’ll be free. Don’t forget: One day, you too, will die.

Understanding your mortality isn’t a curse–understanding your death is freedom. Knowing your time is finite, slipping through your hands–going grey, aging; all of this reminds you of the dreams to fulfill before you die.

Live with purpose. Is it better to die, forty years old, with everything you’ve ever wanted checked off; or live until you’re 95, never leaving the five-mile radius of your hometown, with nothing to your name except a gravestone your children visit for a moment on the way to Disneyland?

Men need a war to fight

Men have potential for great power. Deep inside the male barista, stomach full of vegan cookies is a warrior waiting for a calling–the right trigger to light a fuse and detonate.

Without meaning life is meaningless. All men are free to pick their meaning, but choice is frightening; more so than slavery.

Most of the world does nothing. Attaching yourself to a purpose makes your life matter. Some people have kids to have meaning.

A meaningless life manifests externally through pleasure. Alcohol, cigarettes; or worse, vaping–and porn; anything to forget–anything to waste time.

Death isn’t defeat

Death isn’t defeat; fear is defeat. The Vikings believed fear was their enemy. Not Death. Vikings believed in smiling while opponents ripped entrails from their stomachs. The Vikings understood fighting never ends; there is no peace.

picture of an old church

There is conflict and minor periods of peace, followed by war; a permanent cycle of building and crumbling until the final warrior falls, and the last Valkyrie takes the dead warrior to Valhalla as a conscript in Odin’s army.

Fear is the enemy – not death

A good death is honorable. A cowards death is shameful. Fear and anxiety are the enemies of men–not death.

A man throws himself before a speeding car to save a child in exchange for his own life–the man is a hero. There’s no shame in his action; he is brave, and his community will remember him so.

There is shame in doing nothing.

Doing nothing is shameful. Everyone has the potential for greatness and one day, everyone realizes it.

Some people meet their greatness when their young, and live artistic lives normal men dream of. The majority meet their greatness facing their mortality, on their deathbed from old age or sickness, realizing everything they could have been moments before their last breath–hell on Earth.

Musashi did not fear death | He Lived

Musashi killed over sixty men in one-on one combat. At the age of thirteen he killed a man. How does a child slay a man? The child has no fear of death. It may be ignorance, but ignorance can be bliss. Ignorance can save you–Musashi wasn’t taught–yet–everything he couldn’t do.

Musashi was ready to die–so he lived. If you fear death, there’s always a reason to panic. Without the fear of death, panic cannot exist.

You’re free to do everything when you’re willing to die for everything.

This power isn’t inherently good. But it can be used for good. The Firefighter and the terrorist both hold no fear of death. One takes lives–the other–saves them.

Power isn’t bad–Tyranny is. Preparing for your death isn’t bad either. How you live determines how you’re evaluated when class is out. One day, class is out for all of us.

Musashi precept 17 | Do not fear death


 

Musashi Precept 18 | Do not Seek to Possess Goods or Fiefs in your old age

musashi 21 principles - principle 18


musashi principle 18

Musashi Precept 18 | Do not seek to possess goods or fiefs in your old age

Live now – not in retirement

You’ll be free when you’re retired–but your body won’t. People eat lies. Once you retire, you can do anything you want.

Wait until your 65 then explore the caverns of Mexico and the prostitutes of Amsterdam. When you’re 45, you need a hip-replacement–Adios Mexico. When you’re 52, you become infertile–goodbye suspect Thai girls.

When you’re 59, you died of a heart attack. No more life; waited too long.

Retirement is a pyramid scheme played against the working man constructed by corporate lawyers who want twenty-five years of your life spent in the same cubicle.

Work for us until you’re 65. We’ll take the best years of your life; we’ll take your energy; we’ll take all of your passion; we’ll take the time you could have spent raising your daughter in exchange for team-building activities and sexual-harassment seminars.

When you’re free to travel the world you won’t want to anymore. All of your energy is gone; your battery has less than 10% left, and your charger broke ten years ago.

The agreement: Dream now, forget later. The slave, freed after decades of torture forgot who he was–forgot his dreams and his ambitions.

Tomorrow may never come

musashi principle 18

Tomorrow isn’t guaranteed. Why live like it is? Retire now.

The word ‘retirement’ is a trick. Retirement means doing whatever the hell you want when you want. You can retire now. Everyone has a passion and a purpose. If you don’t; you haven’t looked hard enough.

Even with life expectancy increasing with modern medicine, you’re better off enjoying the beaches of Greece when you’re twenty-five, not sixty-five–too old to maintain a hard on for longer than it takes to finish tinkling.

People want the art and ideas in your head. Right now. Stop being selfish and give them what you have.

gathering to give away?

What is the purpose of owning anything in your eighties? You won’t have the energy to use your fancy toys. And the government took your driver’s license on your 75th birthday. Now, your Corvette sits in the garage like trying to fuck with a soft dick that doesn’t work.

the elderly musashi 18

Possessions aren’t buried with the owner. Your belongings get distributed to your greedy children while you’re still alive, parked in a wheelchair watching reruns of the same Netflix shows you used to hide away from the world twenty years earlier.

Experience & Memory are forever

Your experiences and memories never leave you. You carry experience beyond the grave. To the next world, if you believe in such a thing.

Near the end of your life, your family plots who gets your collection of priceless vinyl. They’ll argue right in front of you–a ghost before your dead. What daughter gets your wife’s precious jewelry you bought for her every anniversary?

Musashi left this world as he came into it.

musashi answers inside

Musashi created his list of rules for life one week before his death. We don’t know if he gave away his possessions, or, if he had any–but–with the wisdom he delivered–why would he keep anything?

Musashi gave his life to his path. He didn’t care about belongings. Musashi cared about tools and progressing down his path.

Musashi left the world with nothing. No baggage to carry to his next destination. He left the world naked and ready; exactly how he entered it.

Live now. Tomorrow isn’t guaranteed and nothing you own belongs to you. Your life doesn’t belong to you either. You can’t control when you’re ticket gets punched.

Life for today–not for retirement.

Musashi Precept 18 | Do not seek to possess goods or fiefs in your old age


Musashi Precept 19 | Respect Buddha and the Gods Without Counting on their Help

musashi 21 principles - principle 19


musashi principle 19

Musashi Precept 19 | Respect Buddha and the gods without counting on their help

The gods help those who help themselves.

The gods help those who help themselves. They ignore the whiny, the sick, the poor and the stupid. The gods encourage the brave–they have no time for fools, whining about their lives, disregarding the gift of life bestowed on the unworthy like a spoiled child at Christmas who didn’t get all the presents on his list. He throws a fit. He wants more gifts.

If you want a better life–make it better. The gods create momentum. You start. They carry.

Once you begin, whatever you want to do and work past an hour, you enter flow; your work becomes easy.

Momentum, like compound interest, is powerful. When an avalanche gains momentum people die; no one can stop an avalanche, like no one can stop you when you’re on a roll, executing your duty like a computer program initiating a self-destruct-sequence. Even death can’t stop your momentum.

Musashi wasn’t religious

musashi wasn't religious

Musashi respected the gods but never depended on them. The gods don’t want your baggage. The gods help the hero who goes farther than the normal man.

Musashi relied on himself. Musashi held himself to the level of a god while staying humble, learning from every teacher along his path.

Most egos are attached to their heart like a parasite boring deeper into the ventricles, circulating life to every limb.

You’ll never be worth a damn if you think you aren’t. The great artists don’t think–they live through their work.

The flow state is divine assistance

Flow is a state of being. You’re challenged–but competent. Flow is the learning place. The realm of true purpose.

Flow is looking up at the clock after an hour of work on Saturday afternoon to see the one hour worked, was actually seven, and now you’re sitting at your desk while the moon illuminates your keyboard at 3 am–the time most normal folk quit drinking.

musashi flow

Flow is divine assistance. The flow state opens when the artist dissolves into their art–letting go of ego–forgetting worldly problems.

Jordan Peterson calls flow: The place between chaos and order in his book: 12 rules for life: An Antidote to Chaos.

Prolific inventors, artists, and entrepreneurs rely on the flow state to produce their best work. Below are book recommendations on flow.

Flow books:

Gods Create.

gods create

Some humans are gods. Gods create. In the beginning, the Bible said God created. Most people stop creating after they put their last colored pencil in their lunchbox after sixth-grade graduation.

People can be gods. Great people bring life into the world, birthed from an idea, from a great mind–no different than the Gods of the people, written by the people. From nothing to everything–from an idea to an iPhone.

You can become a god. The kingdom of heaven exists in the world between chaos and order; not too easy, not too hard, a perfect combination of challenge and familiar, keeping you engaged for hours until the sun peeks out from behind the blinds for the start of your morning. You haven’t slept at all.

The gods helped Musashi because he didn’t ask for it

The gods are cat-like in their nature. Try to touch them and the gods abandon you.

When you’re paying attention, begging, needing, searching for divine intervention you’ll hear no response. The dial-tone is dead. No love-letters in the mailbox kissed by Aphrodite, with a spray of her perfume.

While you’re working, the Gods stand behind your desk-chair, massaging your shoulders, removing the tension from your back–your head feels lighter against your shoulders: the flow state is the quiet divine. The Gods keep your mind centered while in their kingdom. Flow.

Musashi took responsibility

Musashi took responsibility for himself and the gods paid him a worthy allowance.

The more work Musashi did; the bigger the bill daddy took from his weathered, leather wallet to pay the lonely warrior.

The formula is simple: walk farther down the path and earn bigger rewards for your travel. Your destiny is a list of chores created by your parents: mark off all the boxes for rewards beyond imagination.

Musashi Precept 19 | Respect Buddha and the gods without counting on their help


Musashi Precept 20 | You may Abandon your own Body but you must Preserve your Honor

musashi 21 principles - principle 20


musashi principle 20

Musashi Precept 20 | You may abandon your own body but you must preserve your honor

Honor transcends the body

Your legacy will live forever if you build it high enough. Kiss the sky with your tower; the work you do today can influence the world for thousands of years.

You may spend your entire life toiling, but never see the result in your lifetime. That’s fine. The purpose of work is meaning–not results. The joy of creation; satisfaction after accomplishing previously impossible feats. Every challenge is impossible until you prove yourself wrong.

Vincent Van Gogh, the artist, cut off his earlobe. Why? No one knows–except Vincent. His body meant nothing to him. His art; everything.

vincent van gogh ear

Paintings of Vincent depict him with a bandaged ear. He incorporated his damaged meat-vehicle into his work. Vincent’s madness, only he understood; no one else. He followed no man. He followed his muse and created without reward until he died–a good life for an artist.

Never forsake your honor

never forsake your honor

Honor is a metric for how much you can trust yourself. An honorable man can rely on himself. Others can rely on an honorable man.

A dishonorable man cannot be depended on. He can’t depend on himself. His family can’t rely on him either; like a drunken Irish father in a Frank Mccourt biography.

Dishonorable men betray themselves for pleasure–drinking at the bar–instead of using factory wages to buy food. Dishonorable men understand what they should do, but, do the opposite instead, or, what their dicks command.

Honor determines how much you can depend on yourself taking the right action, for yourself.

If you lie to yourself: You can’t trust yourself. If you can’t do that, you have nothing except the empty shell of a man, still a boy, who never left the nest; seeking more nipples to feed on.

Honor means doing the right thing even if what you need to do isn’t pleasurable.

Honor lost can never return.

depression without honor

Dishonor is a scar carved deep into the skin with your hand, using a rusty butterknife the color of a shovel left out in the rain since the 30’s.

Lost honor never heals, and, is rarely forgiven, even with the help of therapy. Lost honor is never forgotten–the opportunities missed because fear pulled your shirt over your eyes.

You’ll never forget the girl you slept with in college who weighed more than Willford Brimsley, the Diabetes man, after a Sunday spent clearing out a Country Kitchen Buffet.

You can’t forget the times you betrayed yourself; your body won’t let you.

You can buy anyone–except the honorable. Everyone has a price, except the honorable man. This man cannot be bought and will not break before any challenge. He may fail. Soon, you’ll see him again; honorable men don’t know how to quit.

You gain honor by never lying to yourself; picking challenges you care about; finishing them.

hate yourself or love yourself

alex faichan

The honorable man loves himself. But has no ego. Musashi loved himself and took responsibility for his life. He didn’t hand responsibility to an employer; a grown-up babysitter because no one is self-motivated anymore.

Musashi had no competition because no man took as much responsibility for their life as Musashi did.

Honor is staying consistent with your values while the world fights to dismantle them. What matters to you? What do you love? What do you hate? Dishonor is abandoning your values like switching from a flip-phone to a smartphone: It’s hard to go back.

Life to the highest standards you set; never retreat to the comfort of yesterday’s standards. Take steps forward into darkness, fumbling with your matches, trying to make sense of a new world, never explored.

Life isn’t a casual boat ride on an endless river. Get off the track and wander into the forest. Adventure forward. Leave no experiences outside the coffin. Or the urn.

Carry your honor to the grave and you’ll die without regret.

Musashi Precept 20 | You may abandon your own body but you must preserve your honor


Musashi Precept 21 | Never Stray from the Way

musashi 21 principles - principle 21


musashi principle 21

Musashi Precept 21 | Never stray from the way

The way is your path. Your mission through life. You need to spend your life finding the beginning of your path. Then, the rest of your life walking as far as your feet will carry you.

Dedicate your life to finding your path; what you want to master, the activities you want to do until you die.

Once you find your path the next chapter of your life begins: mastering the way–never stray from the way.

Books on Musashi: The greatest swordsman to ever live

Musashi knew from an early age his path was combat. He killed his first man, at the age of 13 in a duel. He dedicated his life to the path guaranteeing his place among legends.

Musashi, on occasion, left his path. But not without purpose. Musashi left his path to teach, or train in an alternative discipline, he knew, would help him later–like calligraphy.

musashi principle 21

All of Musashi’s detours had a benefit to his path. When he left, the intention was to find knowledge, or some tool he knew he couldn’t find on his path to combat mastery.

How Wim Hoff mastered his mind through breathing

Cross training in other disciplines allowed Musashi to evaluate warfare from perspectives other than a swordsman. Like through the eyes of an Artist–or a philosopher. Musashi never strayed from the way. He returned to his path–his home.

Distractions remove warriors from their path

humans evolve at the same rate as their distractions

Humans evolve at the same rate as their distractions. More civilization brings more distraction. And more play. Distractions are like locusts: They multiply and can easily take a driver off the road, and into hell.

Distractions are a virus. Viruses spread and multiply. Video games created virtual reality. Netflix is a product of cable television. Both keep millions plugged into an alternate-reality Matrix, stealing time like a billionaire CEO vampire who found he could stay alive an hour longer for every hour of entertainment consumed.

After embracing the matrix, embracing reality TV and dragon queens, the real world loses its luster like a diamond without a shine.

Entertainment is a trap waiting for your discipline to turn around.

Video games and television are super-normal stimuli engineered to keep you watching, playing, episode after episode; quest after quest. You can’t stop now; four more hours and the show is over.

An entertaining show is a vacuum inhaling millions of hours of productive time, spitting back nothing.

the man who can abstain

Video games used to have an ending. Now, they have loot-boxes and real-world transactions for costumes to put makeup on pixels you never owned.

Video games are a race to whoever can play for ten-thousand hours, or spend ten-thousand dollars, to unlock the coveted golden gun, or golden armor, and become the envy of all the Orcs in Asaroth.

When you leave the game you’re still miserable. But, at least your elf girlfriend tells you she loves you, using the same cadence, every time you log in.

The way is the path to satisfaction – everlasting happiness

life has consequences

Happiness found through pleasure is short-lived. Satisfaction is forever.

accomplishment creates satisfaction: Self-fulfillment through accomplishment, one of the primary tenets of the Andreian Philosophy.

Happiness is a piece of candy; sounds good, tastes good, until you’re fat and alone sitting next to your cat, Roberto, the only friend you’ve known for the past five years.

Satisfaction is toiling on an invention for ten years without reward. On the eleventh year–success. Satisfaction takes longer to build but lasts forever. Happiness, the piece of candy, is here for a moment and leaves an acne-scar behind.

It’s easy to get a job. It’s hard to be Steve Jobs, convincing your neighbor while he checks his mail, you’re inventing a product that can hold thousands of songs in your pocket when most people still organize their music in a CD tower.

Steve jobs is made. A job is accepted, like accepting a piece of candy.

social distractions from the path

social media abuse

Drinking, gossiping, chasing girls. The news & politics; the worst offenders.

Oh Musashi, great warrior above, sharpening your swords on a whetstone preparing to kill another cocky challenger, inspire us to turn our backs on distractions while we travel down our paths to glory.

Be wary of the distractions vying to kick you off your path like the backstep of a horse.

It’s easy to spend your twenties drinking and partying–that’s why most people do it. It’s easy. Drinking catches up to you–thirty years old, fat, single, broke, balding–without status or purpose.

Distractions from your path are like the Sirens who tried to lure Odysseus and the Argonauts into the coastal rocks while they sailed the world seeking adventure, taking the men off their path, and into certain death; the Sirens in Homer’s story are a metaphor–for distraction.

Get The Odyssey For Free Here

Distractions are a lethal threat to your success. Everywhere you go–distraction waits–you killed John Wick’s dog; he wants your life.

Even your tools are fighting to distract you. Your phone is the worst offender. Inside your pocket, or, in your hands; right now, is the ultimate distraction and your greatest weapon.

If you use your phone to learn, you’ll become better than the average man who uses his phone to play Vegas slots–because he thinks he’s earning free perks, but really, he’s making the casino’s money because of ads.

How to stay on the path

Musashi dueling

Find your purpose.

Tend to it every day. If you don’t know your purpose–look until you find it. You’ll know because it’s all you’ll think about. Every night, falling asleep having wet-dreams about your purpose and not your wife.

Set clear goals.

Ambiguous goals are seldom accomplished. You can’t hit a target while it’s covered in a thick layer of fog–fog is ambiguity.

Create rewards for yourself.

You can’t be disciplined all the time; but you can most the time.

Life is for your enjoyment.

Earn your pleasures through your work, and you won’t poison your hard-fought discipline.

Create bounties for each challenge on your path.

After accomplishing a milestone, give yourself a reward you actually want–like permission to play a video game; five rest days; a vacation; or a new car–if you’ve earned it.

The path to mastery will give you more satisfaction than anything else you’ll experience.

Musashi Precept 21 | Never stray from the way


Learn more about Musashi:

 

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