musashi 21 principles - principle 18

This article is the eighteenth Principle in the series: Musashi’s 21 principles for life.

Musashi’s 21 Principles

Each principle has its own article expanding upon the wisdom of Miyamoto Musashi.


Do not seek to possess either goods or fiefs in your old age.

musashi principle 18

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


This article is the eighteenth Principle in the series: Musashi’s 21 principles for life.

Musashi’s 21 Principles

Each principle has its own article expanding upon the wisdom of Miyamoto Musashi.

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