Passages from the Hagakure:
Narutomi Hyogo said, “To win over your enemies is to first win over your allies. Defeating one’s allies is defeating oneself. To win over your allies is to win over yourself. To win over yourself is to win over your body by means of your spirit. Unless you train your body and mind well in advance as if in the midst of tens of thousands of allies there is no one who will follow after you. If you have not previously mastered your mind and body, you will not defeat an enemy.”
“Win first, and then go to battle.”
“There is nothing outside the present moment.”
“Right now is the crucial moment and the crucial moment is right now.”
“No matter what the circumstances might be, one should be of the mind to win. One should be holding the first intention to strike.”
“Never forget the basics.”
“Think of the greater good for all.”
“Death may come at any moment.”
“A warrior should keep faith with the kami.”
“Truth lies beyond mere words.”
“A petty person lacks stillness within.”
“The world is only a dream.”
“It can be admirable to appear to lose.”
The long term victory means converting your enemies into allies and friends, doing whatever it takes and guiding them into a good direction. Conducting professional protection, the true warrior is participating in a healing process. Otherwise he is merely a paid thug serving pirates who will in the end find that natural justice which misses no crime against life.
That’s the real secret of Universal Aikido. Pissing people off and alienating them has the worst repercussions imaginable. And the reprisals will usually come when in your gloating, you least expect it.
Restoring harmony is a process of respect for all life including the problem being corrected, so that authentically powerful respect will attract reciprocity.
An immediate victory on the way to the long term goal may be good, provided it is not an end unto itself alone, or serves bad goals. Brief victories are like bubbles on a pond. They come and they go. Ultimate victory has no losers because it is a victory by the universe, inclusive to all the created creation and all that lives as made by the Supreme Being. Everyone wins and the life of the pond and the lives within it become guaranteed. The long term is considered, not just tomorrow or a few years, but millennia and indeed infinites ahead.
In most ancient cultures, lasting thousands of years longer than the stultified, limping histories we laud so much because of a few gadgets, their story survived all manner of attrition because of something that transcends all gadgets: Respect. In these true civilizations based on higher, more noble values of contribution, rather than mere fear of lack, it was mandatory to be a well rounded, highly skilled participant of the mechanism of the group, tribe nation, whatever. As part of this, an initiatory schooling which combined connectedness with heaven and earth, all the directions and the Centre of existence foremost; multi-skilled warrior training, hunting, gathering, farming including natural horticulture or as now labelled permacultiure, animal husbandry, communication skills, social technologies of the era, sciences of the era, healing arts and all the attributes which have nowadays become considerably specialised, were mandatory learning before one could claim humanity. Storytellers became the historians of the tribal ways evolving into the archivists of today. Ability in all the required skills of the era were the expectation of a well rounded human being who considered not only all human beings, but indeed all life and creation as manifestations of the sacred.
Unless an individual could evince respect, teamwork, skill and cooperation, he could not be deemed part of the group. Hangers on, dilettantes, malingerers, liars, cheats and thieves were not looked well upon. That’s how we got this far against all odds.
From the very first people, the long term was considered a vital part of the dream, as was the honouring the ancestors who had carried the torch to now, to be honoured. The torch they carried are your genes. Without them YOU WOULD NOT EXIST! Nowadays, a world of feeble minders mainly care for a bank balance and collecting things which in the course of time will all disappear. For a few short years. Then they die in ignominy, their name soon forgotten. Dust.
Long term victory, is victory for all without exception. Without such victory there can be no victory. The sustainable greater good for all is paramount before a start can begin to be made. Today’s people have not begun, but lag behind. Far behind. Even the most miserable, deluded and malignant sorry soul has to eventually open their eyes and see straight. And contribute. To be a part of the collective, or be expelled from it forever. Be this a pond or a planet. The place to work this restoration is in the present moment, each moment, towards the great goal of the greater good.
The foundations are within oneself.
Otherwise you are not human. We each exist for more purpose than to eventually feed a tree after making a lifetime of mere distress sounds and fumbling in the dark. Stop whining. Honour that value you contain. Live it. Even animals contribute to their group in some way.
The Hagakure is full of valuable social strengthening, nation building and global uniting future seeing.
Get a copy. Read it. Give it your consideration. Extract the value of it. Include it with what other practical wisdom teaching you may embrace.
Time is counting down. Don’t waste life.
Live your life in a way to be proud of being alive for the brief period allotted, which from another dimension appears as the brief spark of a firefly in the dark, then is extinguished.
“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” says an old Chinese Proverb.
True courage is to plant a tree now, whose fruit you may not live to eat, but which will nourish future generations.