Hagakure (Hidden by the Leaves)

After serving as a samurai for many years, Yamamoto Tsunetomo (1659- 1719) decided to share everything he had learned with one of his disciples, Tsuramoto Tashiro.

The outcome of these conversations became the book called Hagakure (Hidden by the Leaves), which withstood the passage of time.

Rereading his text, I realised that the great part of the teachings it holds could be applied to our daily lives.

A samurai, as we know, was a warrior with a code of conduct (known as bushido), based on three important principles: (a) discipline; (b) ethics; (c) courage.

These are the elements that should be present in every decision we make. That way, as we seek for a meaning in our journey on this Earth, we would understand that:

It’s only possible to reach a dream when we have the will for it. It’s not enough to possess enthusiasm, passion, desire – it also requires strength and concentration.

When we set out seeking something that has a true meaning in our existence, there is no need to hurt or step on other people. The more we respect the path of others, the more allies we find, and the more respect we will get.

In addition to discipline, it’s necessary to understand that in spite of our fears we need to carry on. Courage doesn’t mean lack of fear, but the ability not to let it paralyse us.