I have been cleaning out a lot of papers from University. In them I found a couple of quotes from Miyamoto Musashi. I was first introduced to Musashi when I took a Shotokai karate class. The class was held in the school’s wrestling team practice room (the perfect room for this because of its padded floors.) These two quotes were framed on the wall.
I wouldn’t call Musashi ordinary. But he is. That’s what’s extraordinary about him. He’s not content with relying on whatever natural gifts he may have. Knowing he’s ordinary, he’s always trying to improve himself. No one appreciates the agonizing effort he’s had to make. Now that his years of training have yielded such spectacular results, everybody’s talking about his ‘God-given talent.’ That’s how men who don’t try very hard comfort themselves.
This is the way for men who want to learn my strategy:
- Do not think dishonestly
- The way is in training
- Become acquainted with every aim
- Know the ways of all profession
- Distinguish between gain and loss in worldly matters
- Develop intuitive judgment and understanding for everything
- Perceive those things which cannot be seen
- Pay attention even to trifles
- Do nothing which is of no use