The Book of Five Rings

Miyamoto, Musashi
Published: 1644
Categorie(s): Non-Fiction, Philosophy
Source: http://ninjamarket.com/a-book-of-five-rings
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About Miyamoto:
Miyamoto Musashi (c.1584–June 13 (Japanese calendar: May 19), 1645),
also known as Shinmen Takezō, Miyamoto Bennosuke, or by his
Buddhist name Niten Dōraku was a famous Japanese samurai, and is
considered by many to have been one of the most skilled swordsmen in
history. Musashi, as he is often simply known, became legendary
through his outstanding swordsmanship in numerous duels, even from a
very young age. He is the founder of the Hyōhō Niten Ichi-ryū or Niten-
ryū style of swordsmanship and the author of The Book of Five Rings, a
book on strategy, tactics, and philosophy that is still studied today.
Source: Wikipedia
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Introduction
I have been many years training in the Way of Strategy, called Ni Ten
Ichi Ryu, and now I think I will explain it in writing for the first time.
It is now during the first ten days of the tenth month in the twentieth
year of Kanei (1645). I have climbed mountain Iwato of Higo in Kyushu
to pay homage to heaven, pray to Kwannon, and kneel before Buddha. I
am a warrior of Harima province, Shinmen Musashi No Kami Fujiwara
No Genshin, age sixty years. From youth my heart has been inclined to-
ward the Way of Strategy.
My first duel was when I was thirteen, I struck down a strategist of the
Shinto school, one Arima Kihei. When I was sixteen I struck down an
able strategist Tadashima Akiyama. When I was twenty-one I went up to
the capital and met all manner of strategists, never once failing to win in
many contests.
After that I went from province to province dueling with strategist of
various schools, and not once failed to win even though I had as many as
sixty encounters. This was between the ages of thirteen and twenty-eight
or twenty-nine. When I reached thirty I looked back on my past. The pre-
vious victories were not due to my having mastered strategy. Perhaps it
was natural ability, or the order of heaven, or that other schools' strategy
was inferior.
After that I studied morning and evening searching for the principle,
and came to realize the Way of Strategy when I was fifty. Since then I
have lived without following any particular Way. Thus with the virtue of
strategy I practice many arts and abilities - all things with no teacher. To
write this book I did not use the law of Buddha or the teachings of Con-
fucius, neither old war chronicles nor books on martial tactics. I take up
my brush to explain the true spirit of this Ichi school as it is mirrored in
the Way of heaven and Kwannon. The time is the night of the tenth day
of the tenth month, at the hour of the tiger (3-5 a.m.)
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Chapter 1
THE GROUND BOOK
Strategy is the craft of the warrior. Commanders must enact the craft,
and troopers should know this Way. There is no warrior in the world
today who really understands the Way of Strategy.
There are various Ways. There is the Way of salvation by the law of
Buddha, the Way of Confucius governing the Way of learning, the Way
of healing as a doctor, as a poet teaching the Way of Waka, tea, archery,
and many arts and skills. Each man practices as he feels inclined. It is
said the warrior's is the twofold Way of pen and sword, and he should
have a taste for both Ways.
Even if a man has no natural ability he can be a warrior by sticking as-
siduously to both divisions of the Way. Generally speaking, the Way of
the warrior is resolute acceptance of death. Although not only warriors
but priests, women, peasants and lowlier folk have been known to die
readily in the cause of duty or out of shame, this is a different thing. The
warrior is different in that studying the Way of Strategy is based on
overcoming men. By victory gained in crossing swords with individuals,
or enjoining battle with large numbers, we can attain power and fame for
ourselves or our lord. This is the virtue of strategy.
The Way of Strategy
In China and Japan practitioners of the Way have been known as
"masters of strategy". Warriors must learn this Way.
Recently there have been people getting on in the world as strategists,
but they are usually just sword-fencers. The attendants of the Kashima
Kantori shrines of the province Hitachi received instruction from the
gods, and made schools based on this teaching, traveling from country to
country instructing men. This is the recent meaning of strategy.
In olden times strategy was listed among the Ten Abilities and Seven
Arts as a beneficial practice. It was certainly an art but as a beneficial
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practice it was not limited to sword-fencing. The true value of sword-
fencing cannot be seen within the confines of sword-fencing technique.
If we look at the world we see arts for sale. Men use equipment to sell
their own selves. As if with the nut and the flower, the nut has become
less than th flower. In this kind of Way of Strategy, both those teaching
and those learning the way are concerned with colouring and showing
off their technique, trying to hasten the bloom of the flower. They speak
of "This Dojo" and "That Dojo". They are looking for profit. Someone
once said "Immature strategy is the cause of grief". That was a true
saying.
There are four Ways in which men pass through life: as gentlemen,
farmers, artisans and merchants.
The Way of the farmer. Using agricultural instruments, he sees springs
through to autumns with an eye on the changes of season.
Second is the Way of the merchant. The wine maker obtains his in-
gredients and puts them to use to make his living. The Way of the mer-
chant is always to live by taking profit. This is the Way of the merchant.
Thirdly the gentleman warrior, carrying the weaponry of his Way.
The Way of the warrior is to master the virtue of his weapons. If a gen-
tleman dislikes strategy he will not appreciate the benefit of weaponry,
so must he not have a little taste for this? Fourthly the Way of the artisan.
The Way of the carpenter is to become proficient in the use of his tools,
first to lay his plans with a true measure and then perform his work ac-
cording to plan. Thus he passes through life. These are the four Ways of
the gentleman, the farmer, the artisan and the merchant.
Comparing the Way of the Carpenter to Strategy
The comparison with carpentry is through the connection with houses.
Houses of the nobility, houses of warriors, the Four houses, ruin of
houses, thriving of houses, the style of the house, the tradition of the
house, and the name of the house. The carpenter uses a master plan of
the building, and the Way of Strategy is similar in that there is a plan of
campaign. If you want to learn the craft of war, ponder over this book.
The teacher is as a needle, the disciple is as thread. You must practice
constantly.
Like the foreman carpenter, the commander must know natural rules,
and the rules of the country, and the rules of houses. This is the Way of
the foreman.
The foreman carpenter must know the architectural theory of towers
and temples, and the plans of palaces, and must employ men to raise up
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houses. The Way of the foreman carpenter is the same as the Way of the
commander of a warrior house. In the construction of houses, choice of
woods is made.
Straight un-knotted timber of good appearance is used for the revealed
pillars, straight timber with small defects is used for the inner pillars.
Timbers of the finest appearance, even if a little weak, is used for the
thresholds, lintels, doors, and sliding doors, and so on. Good strong tim-
ber, though it be gnarled and knotted, can always be used discreetly in
construction. Timber which is weak or knotted throughout should be
used as scaffolding, and later for firewood.
The foreman carpenter allots his men work according to their ability.
Floor layers, makers of sliding doors, thresholds and lintels, ceilings and
so on. Those of poor ability lay the floor joists, and those of lesser ability
carve wedges and do such miscellaneous work. If the foreman knows
and deploys his men well the finished work will be good. The foreman
should take into account the abilities and limitations of his men, circulat-
ing among them and asking nothing unreasonable. He should know
their morale and spirit, and encourage them when necessary. This is the
same as the principle of strategy.
The Way of Strategy
Like a trooper, the carpenter sharpens his own tools. He carries his
equipment in his tool box, and works under the direction of his foreman.
He makes columns and girders with an axe, shapes floorboards and
shelves with a plane, cuts fine openwork and carvings accurately, giving
as excellent a finish as his skill will allow. This is the craft of the car-
penters. When the carpenter becomes skilled and understands measures
he can become a foreman.
The carpenter's attainment is, having tools which will cut well, to
make small shrines, writing shelves, tables, paper lanterns, chopping
boards and pot-lids. These are the specialties of the carpenter. Things are
similar for the trooper. You ought to think deeply about this.
The attainment of the carpenter is that his work is not warped, that the
joints are not misaligned, and that the work is truly planed so that it
meets well and is not merely finished in sections. This is essential. If you
want to learn this Way, deeply consider the things written in this book
one at a time. You must do sufficient research.
Outline of the Five Books of this Book of Strategy
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The Way is shown as five books concerning different aspects. These
are Ground, Water, Fire, Wind (tradition), and Void (the illusionary
nature of worldly things)
The body of the Way of Strategy from the viewpoint of my Ichi school
is explained in the Ground book. It is difficult to realize the true Way just
through sword-fencing. Know the smallest things and the biggest things,
the shallowest things and the deepest things. As if it were a straight road
mapped out on the ground, the first book is called the Ground book.
Second is the Water book. With water as the basis, the spirit becomes
like water. Water adopts the shape of its receptacle, it is sometimes a
trickle and sometimes a wild sea. Water has a clear blue colour. By the
clarity, things of Ichi school are shown in this book. If you master the
principles of sword-fencing, when you freely beat one man, you beat any
man in the world. The spirit of defeating a man is the same for ten mil-
lion men. The strategist makes small things into big things, like building
a great Buddha from a one foot model. I cannot write in detail how this
is done. The principle of strategy is having one thing, to know ten thou-
sand things. Things of Ichi school are written in this the Water book.
Third is the Fire book. This book is about fighting. The spirit of fire is
fierce, whether the fire be small or big; and so it is with battles. The Way
of battles is the same for man to man fights and for ten thousand a side
battles. You must appreciate that spirit can become big or small. What is
big is easy to perceive: what is small is difficult to perceive. In short, it is
difficult for large numbers of men to change position, so their move-
ments can be easily predicted. An individual can easily change his mind,
so his movements are difficult to predict. You must appreciate this. The
essence of this book is that you must train day and night in order to
make quick decisions. In strategy it is necessary to treat training as part
of normal life with your spirit unchanging. Thus combat in battle is de-
scribed in the Fire book.
Fourthly the Wind book. This book is not concerned with my Ichi
school but with other schools of strategy. By Wind I mean old traditions,
present-day traditions, and family traditions of strategy. Thus I clearly
explain the strategies of the world. This is tradition. It is difficult to know
yourself if you do not know others. To all Ways there are side-tracks. If
you study a Way daily, and your spirit diverges, you may think you are
obeying a good Way but objectively it is not the true Way. If you are fol-
lowing the true way and diverge a little, this will later become a large di-
vergence. You must realize this. Other strategies have come to be
thought of as mere sword-fencing, and it is not unreasonable that this
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should be so. The benefit of my strategy, although it includes sword-fen-
cing, lies in a separate principle. I have explained what is commonly
meant by strategy in other schools in the Tradition (Wind) book.
Fifthly, the book of the Void. By void I mean that which has no begin-
ning and no end. Attaining this principle means not attaining the prin-
ciple. The Way of strategy is the Way of nature. When you appreciate the
power of nature, knowing rhythm of any situation, you will be able to hit
the enemy naturally and strike naturally. All this is the Way of the Void.
I intend to show how to follow the true Way according to nature in the
book of the Void.
The Name Ichi Ryu Ni To (One school - two swords)
Warriors, both commanders and troopers, carry two swords at their
belt. In olden times these were called the long sword and the sword;
nowadays they are known as the sword and the companion sword. Let it
suffice to say that in our land, whatever the reason, a warrior carries two
swords at his belt. It is the Way of the warrior.
"Nito Ichi Ryu" shows the advantages of using both swords.
The spear and the halberd are weapons which are carried out of doors.
Students of the Ichi school Way of Strategy should train from the start
with the sword and the long sword in either hand. This is a truth: when
you sacrifice your life, you must make fullest use of your weaponry. It is
false not to do so, and to die with a weapon yet undrawn.
If you hold a sword with both hands, it is difficult to wield it freely to
left and right, so my method is to carry the sword in one hand. This does
not apply to large weapons such as the spear or halberd, but swords and
companion swords can be carried in one hand. It is encumbering to hold
a sword in both hands when you are on horseback, when running on un-
even roads, on swampy ground, muddy rice fields, stony ground, or in a
crowd of people. To hold the long sword in both hands is not the true
Way, for if you carry a bow or spear or other arms in your left hand you
have only one hand free for the long sword. However, when it is difficult
to cut an enemy down with one hand, you must use both hands. It is not
difficult to wield a sword in one hand; the Way to learn this is to train
with two long swords, one in each hand. It will seem difficult at first, but
everything is difficult at first. Bows are difficult to draw, halberds are
difficult to wield; as you become accustomed to the bow so your pull
will become stronger. When you become used to wielding the long
sword, you will gain the power of the Way and wield the sword well.
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As I will explain in the second book, the Water Book, there is no fast
way of wielding the long sword. The long sword should be wielded
broadly and the companion sword closely. This is the first thing to
realize.
According to this Ichi school, you can win with a long weapon, and
yet you can also win with a short weapon. In short, the Way of the Ichi
school is the spirit of winning, whatever the weapon and whatever its
size.
It is better to use two swords rather than one when you are fighting a
crowd, and especially if you want to take a prisoner.
These things cannot be explained in detail. From one thing, know ten
thousand things. When you attain the Way of Strategy there will not be
one thing you cannot see. You must study hard.
The Benefit of the Two Characters Reading "Strategy"
Masters of the long sword are called strategists. As for the other milit-
ary arts, those who master the bow are called archers, those who master
the spear are called spearmen, those who master the gun are called
marksmen, those who master the halberd are called halberdiers. But we
do not call masters of the Way of the long sword "longswordsmen", nor
do we speak of "companion swordsmen". Because bows, guns, spears
and halberds are all warriors' equipment they are certainly part of
strategy. To master the virtue of the long sword is to govern the world
and oneself, thus the long sword is the basis of strategy. The principle is
"strategy by means of the long sword". If he attains the virtue of the long
sword, one man can beat ten men. Just as one man can beat ten, so a hun-
dred men can beat a thousand, and a thousand can beat ten thousand. In
my strategy, one man is the same as ten thousand, so this strategy is the
complete warrior's craft.
The Way of the warrior does not include other Ways, such as Con-
fucianism, Buddhism, certain traditions, artistic accomplishments and
dancing. But even though these are not part of the Way, if you know the
Way broadly you will see it in everything. Men must polish their partic-
ular Way.
The Benefit of Weapons in Strategy
There is a time and place for use of weapons.
The best use of the companion sword is in a confined space, or when
you are engaged closely with an opponent. The long sword can be used
effectively in all situations.
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The halberd is inferior to the spear on the battlefield. With the spear
you can take the initiative; the halberd is defensive. In the hands of one
of two men of equal ability, the spear gives a little extra strength. Spear
and halberd both have their uses, but neither is very beneficial in con-
fined spaces. They cannot be used for taking a prisoner. They are essen-
tially weapons for the field.
Anyway, if you learn "indoor" techniques, you will think narrowly
and forget the true Way. Thus you will have difficulty in actual
encounters.
The bow is tactically strong at the commencement of battle, especially
battles on a moor, as it is possible to shoot quickly from among the
spearmen. However, it is unsatisfactory in sieges, or when the enemy is
more than forty yards away. For this reason there are nowadays few tra-
ditional schools of archery. There is little use nowadays for this kind of
skill.
From inside fortifications, the gun has no equal among weapons. It is
the supreme weapon on the field before the ranks clash, but once swords
are crossed the gun becomes useless. One of the virtues of the bow is that
you can see the arrows in flight and correct your aim accordingly,
whereas gunshot cannot be seen. You must appreciate the importance of
this.
Just as a horse must have endurance and no defects, so it is with
weapons. Horses should walk strongly, and swords and companion
swords should cut strongly. Spears and halberds must stand up to heavy
use, bows and guns must be sturdy. Weapons should be hardy rather
than decorative.
You should not have a favourite weapon. To become over-familiar
with one weapon is as much a fault as not knowing it sufficiently well.
You should not copy others, but use weapons which you can handle
properly. It is bad for commanders and troopers to have likes and dis-
likes. These are things you must learn thoroughly.
Timing in Strategy
There is timing in everything. Timing in strategy cannot be mastered
without a great deal of practice.
Timing is important in dancing and pipe or string music, for they are
in rhythm only if timing is good. Timing and rhythm are also involved in
the military arts, shooting bows and guns, and riding horses. In all skills
and abilities there is timing. There is also timing in the Void.
There is timing in the whole life of the warrior, in his thriving and de-
clining, in his harmony and discord. Similarly, there is timing in the Way
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of the merchant, in the rise and fall of capital. All things entail rising and
falling timing. You must be able to discern this. In strategy there are vari-
ous timing considerations. From the outset you must know the applic-
able timing and the inapplicable timing, and from among the large and
small things and the fast and slow timings find the relevant timing, first
seeing the distance timing and the background timing. This is the main
thing in strategy. It is especially important to know the background tim-
ing, otherwise your strategy will become uncertain.
You win battles with the timing in the Void born of the timing of cun-
ning by knowing the enemies' timing, and thus using a timing which the
enemy does not expect.
All the five books are chiefly concerned with timing. You must train
sufficiently to appreciate this.
If you practice day and night in the above Ichi school strategy, your
spirit will naturally broaden. Thus is large scale strategy and the strategy
of hand to hand combat propagated in the world. This is recorded for the
first time in the five books of Ground, Water, Fire, Tradition (Wind), and
Void. This is the way for men who want to learn my strategy:
1. Do not think dishonestly.
2. The Way is in training.
3. Become acquainted with every art.
4. Know the Ways of all professions.
5. Distinguish between gain and loss in worldly matters.
6. Develop intuitive judgement and understanding for everything.
7. Perceive those things which cannot be seen.
8. Pay attention even to trifles.
9. Do nothing which is of no use.
It is important to start by setting these broad principles in your heart,
and train in the Way of Strategy. If you do not look at things on a large
scale it will be difficult for you to master strategy. If you learn and attain
this strategy you will never lose even to twenty or thirty enemies. More
than anything to start with you must set your heart on strategy and earn-
estly stick to the Way. You will come to be able to actually beat men in
fights, and to be able to win with your eye. Also by training you will be
able to freely control your own body, conquer men with your body, and
with sufficient training you will be able to beat ten men with your spirit.
When you have reached this point, will it not mean that you are
invincible?
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Moreover, in large scale strategy the superior man will manage many
subordinates dextrously, bear himself correctly, govern the country and
foster the people, thus preserving the ruler's discipline. If there is a Way
involving the spirit of not being defeated, to help oneself and gain hon-
our, it is the Way of strategy.
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Chapter 2
THE WATER BOOK
The spirit of the Ni Ten Ichi school of strategy is based on water, and this
Water Book explains methods of victory as the long-sword form of the
Ichi school. Language does not extend to explaining the Way in detail,
but it can be grasped intuitively. Study this book; read a word then pon-
der on it. If you interpret the meaning loosely you will mistake the Way.
The principles of strategy are written down here in terms of single
combat, but you must think broadly so that you attain an understanding
for ten-thousand-a-side battles.
Strategy is different from other things in that if you mistake the Way
even a little you will become bewildered and fall into bad ways.
If you merely read this book you will not reach the Way of Strategy.
Absorb the things written in this book.Do not just read, memorise or im-
itate, but so that you realize the principle from within your own heart
study hard to absorb these things into your body.
Spiritual Bearing in Strategy
In strategy your spiritual bearing must not be any different from nor-
mal. Both in fighting and in everyday life you should be determined
though calm. Meet the situation without tenseness yet not recklessly,
your spirit settled yet unbiased. Even when your spirit is calm do not let
your body relax, and when your body is relaxed do not let your spirit
slacken. Do not let your spirit be influenced by your body, or your body
be influenced by your spirit. Be neither insufficiently spirited nor over
spirited. An elevated spirit is weak and a low spirit is weak. Do not let
the enemy see your spirit.
Small people must be completely familiar with the spirit of large
people, and large people must be familiar with the spirit of small people.
Whatever your size, do not be misled by the reactions of your own body.
With your spirit open and unconstricted, look at things from a high point
of view. You must cultivate your wisdom and spirit. Polish your
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wisdom: learn public justice, distinguish between good and evil, study
the Ways of different arts one by one. When you cannot be deceived by
men you will have realized the wisdom of strategy.
The wisdom of strategy is different from other things. On the battle-
field, even when you are hard-pressed, you should ceaselessly research
the principles of strategy so that you can develop a steady spirit.
Stance in Strategy
Adopt a stance with the head erect, neither hanging down, nor looking
up, nor twisted. Your forehead and the space between your eyes should
not be wrinkled. Do not roll your eyes nor allow them to blink, but
slightly narrow them. With your features composed, keep the line of
your nose straight with a feeling of slightly flaring your nostrils. Hold
the line of the rear of the neck straight: instill vigour into your hairline,
and in the same way from the shoulders down through your entire body.
Lower both shoulders and, without the buttocks jutting out, put strength
into your legs from the knees to the tips of your toes. Brace your abdo-
men so that you do not bend at the hips. Wedge your companion sword
in your belt against your abdomen, so that your belt is not slack - this is
called "wedging in".
In all forms of strategy, it is necessary to maintain the combat stance in
everyday life and to make your everyday stance your combat stance.
You must research this well.
The Gaze in Strategy
The gaze should be large and broad. This is the twofold gaze
"Perception and Sight". Perception is strong and sight week.
In strategy it is important to see distant things as if they were close and
to take a distanced view of close things. It is important in strategy to
know the enemy's sword and not to be distracted by insignificant move-
ments of his sword. You must study this. The gaze is the same for single
combat and for large-scale strategy.
It is necessary in strategy to be able to look to both sides without mov-
ing the eyeballs. You cannot master this ability quickly. Learn what is
written here; use this gaze in everyday life and do not vary it whatever
happens.
Holding the Long Sword
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Grip the long sword with a rather floating feeling in your thumb and
forefinger, with the middle finger neither tight nor slack, and with the
last two fingers tight. It is bad to have play in your hands.
When you take up a sword, you must feel intent on cutting the enemy.
As you cut an enemy you must not change your grip, and your hands
must not "cower". When you dash the enemy's sword aside, or ward it
off, or force it down, you must slightly change the feeling in your thumb
and forefinger. Above all, you must be intent on cutting the enemy in the
way you grip the sword.
The grip for combat and for sword-testing is the same. There is no
such thing as a "man-cutting grip".
Generally, I dislike fixedness in both long swords and hands. Fixed-
ness means a dead hand. Pliability is a living hand. You must bear this in
mind.
Footwork
With the tips of your toes somewhat floating, tread firmly with your
heels. Whether you move fast or slow, with large or small steps, your
feet must always move as in normal walking. I dislike the three walking
methods know as "jumping-foot", "floating-foot" and "fixed-steps".
So-called "Yin-Yang foot" is important in the Way. Yin-Yang foot
means not moving only one foot. It means moving your feet left-right
and right-left when cutting, withdrawing, or warding off a cut. You
should not move on one foot preferentially.
The Five Attitudes
The five attitudes are: Upper, Middle, Lower, Right Side, and Left
Side. These are the give. Although attitude has these five divisions, the
one purpose of all of them is to cut the enemy. There are none but these
five attitudes.
Whatever attitude you are in, do not be conscious of making the atti-
tude; think only of cutting. Your attitude should be large or small ac-
cording to the situation. Upper, Lower and Middle attitudes are decisive.
Left Side and Right Side attitudes are fluid. Left and Right attitudes
should be used if there is an obstruction overhead or to one side. The de-
cision to use Left or Right depends on the place.
The essence of the Way is this. To understand attitude you must thor-
oughly understand the middle attitude. The middle attitude is the heart
of attitudes. If we look at strategy on a broad scale, the Middle attitude is
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the seat of the commander, with the other four attitudes following the
commander. You must appreciate this.
The Way of the Long Sword
Knowing the Way of the long sword means we can wield with two fin-
gers the sword we usually carry. If we know the path of the sword well,
we can wield it easily. If you try to wield the long sword quickly you
will mistake the Way. To wield the long sword well you must wield it
calmly.
If you try to wield it quickly, like a folding fan or a short sword, you
will err by using "short sword chopping". You cannot cut down a man
with a long sword using this method.
When you have cut downwards with the longsword, lift it straight up-
wards; when you cut sideways, return the sword along a sideways path.
Return the sword in a reasonable way, always stretching the elbows
broadly. Wield the sword strongly. This is the Way of the longsword.
If you learn to use the five approaches of my strategy, you will be able
to wield a sword well. You must train constantly.
The Five Approaches
1. The first approach is the Middle attitude. Confront the enemy with
the point of your sword against his face. When he attacks, dash his
sword to the right and "ride" it. Or, when the enemy attacks, deflect the
point of his sword by hitting downwards, keep your long sword where it
is, and as the enemy renews his attack cut his arms from below. This is
the first method.
The five approaches are this kind of thing. You must train repeatedly
using a long sword in order to learn them. When you master my Way of
the long sword, you will be able to control any attack the enemy makes. I
assure you, there are no attitudes other than the five attitudes of the long
sword of Ni To.
2. In the second approach with the long sword, from the Upper atti-
tude cut the enemy just as he attacks. If the enemy evades the cut, keep
your sword where it is and, scooping up from below, cut him as he re-
news the attack. It is possible to repeat the cut from here.
In this method there are various changes in timing and spirit. You will
be able to understand this by training in the Ichi school. You will always
win with the five long sword methods. You must train repetitively.
3. In the third approach, adopt the Lower attitude, anticipating scoop-
ing up. When the enemy attacks, hit his hands from below. As you do so
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he may try to hit your sword down. If this is the case, cut his upper
arm(s) horizontally with a feeling of "crossing". This means that from the
lower attitudes you hit the enemy at the instant that he attacks.
You will encounter this method often, both as a beginner and in later
strategy. You must train holding a long sword.
4. In this fourth approach, adopt the Left Side attitude. As the enemy
attacks hit his hands from below. If as you hit his hands he attempts to
dash down your sword, with the feeling of hitting his hands, parry the
path of his long sword and cut across from above your shoulder.
This is the Way of the long sword. Through this method you win by
parrying the line of the enemy's attack. You must research this.
5. In the fifth approach, the sword is in the Right Side attitude. In ac-
cordance with the enemy's attack, cross your long sword from below at
the side to the Upper attitude. Then cut straight from above.
This method is essential for knowing the Way of the long sword well.
If you can use this method, you can freely wield a heavy long sword.
I cannot describe in detail how to use these five approaches. You must
become well acquainted with my "in harmony with the long sword"
Way, learn large-scale timing, understand the enemy's long sword, and
become used to the five approaches from the outset. You will always win
by using these five methods, with various timing considerations discern-
ing the enemy's spirit. You must consider all this carefully.
The "Attitude No-Attitude" Teaching
"Attitude No-Attitude" means that there is no need for what are know
as long sword attitudes.
Even so, attitudes exist as the five ways of holding the long sword.
However you hold the sword it must be in such a way that it is easy to
cut the enemy well, in accordance with the situation, the place, and your
relation to the enemy. From the Upper attitude as your spirit lessens you
can adopt the Middle attitude, and from the Middle attitude you can
raise the sword a little in your technique and adopt the Upper attitude.
From the lower attitude you can raise the sword and adopt the Middle
attitudes as the occasion demands. According to the situation, if you turn
your sword from either the Left Side or Right Side attitude towards the
centre, the Middle or the Lower attitude results.
The principle of this is called "Existing Attitude - Nonexisting
Attitude".
The primary thing when you take a sword in your hands is your inten-
tion to cut the enemy, whatever the means. Whenever you parry, hit,
17
spring, strike or touch the enemy's cutting sword, you must cut the en-
emy in the same movement. It is essential to attain this. If you think only
of hitting, springing, striking or touching the enemy, you will not be able
actually to cut him. More than anything, you must be thinking of carry-
ing your movement through to cutting him. You must thoroughly re-
search this.
Attitude in strategy on a larger scale is called "Battle Array". Such atti-
tudes are all for winning battles. Fixed formation is bad. Study this well.
To Hit the Enemy "In One Timing"
"In One Timing" means, when you have closed with the enemy, to hit
him as quickly and directly as possible, without moving your body or
settling your spirit, while you see that he is still undecided. The timing of
hitting before the enemy decides to withdraw, break or hit, is this "In
One Timing".
You must train to achieve this timing, to be able to hit in the timing of
an instant.
The "Abdomen Timing of Two"
When you attack and the enemy quickly retreats, as you see him tense
you must feint a cut. Then, as he relaxes, follow up and hit him. This is
the "Abdomen Timing of Two".
It is very difficult to attain this by merely reading this book, but you
will soon understand with a little instruction.
No Design, No Conception
In this method, when the enemy attacks and you also decide to attack,
hit with your body, and hit with your spirit, and hit from the Void with
your hands, accelerating strongly. This is the "No Design, No Concep-
tion" cut.
This is the most important method of hitting. It is often used. You
must train hard to understand it.
The Flowing Water Cut
The "Flowing Water Cut" is used when you are struggling blade to
blade with the enemy. When he breaks and quickly withdraws trying to
spring with his long sword, expand your body and spirit and cut him as
slowly as possible with your long sword, following your body like stag-
nant water. You can cut with certainty if you learn this. You must dis-
cern the enemy's grade.
18
Continuous Cut
When you attack and the enemy also attacks, and your swords spring
together, in one action cut his head, hands and legs. When you cut sever-
al places with one sweep of the long sword, it is the "Continuous Cut".
You must practice this cut; it is often used. With detailed practice you
should be able to understand it.
The Fire and Stones
Cut The Fires and Stones Cut means that when the enemy's long
sword and your long sword clash together you cut as strongly as pos-
sible without raising the sword even a little. This means cutting quickly
with the hands, body and legs - all three cutting strongly. If you train
well enough you will be able to strike strongly.
The Red Leaves Cut
The Red Leaves Cut [allusion to falling, dying leaves] means knocking
down the enemy's long sword. The spirit should be getting control of his
sword. When the enemy is in a long sword attitude in front of you and
intent on cutting, hitting and parrying, you strongly hit the enemy's long
sword with the Fire and Stones Cut, perhaps in the spirit of the "No
Design, No Conception" Cut. If you then beat down the point of his
sword with a sticky feeling, he will necessarily drop the sword. If you
practice this cut it becomes easy to make the enemy drop his sword. You
must train repetitively.
The Body in Place of the Long Sword
Also "the long sword in place of the body". Usually we move the body
and the sword at the same time to cut the enemy. However, according to
the enemy's cutting method, you can dash against him with your body
first, and afterwards cut with the sword. If his body is immoveable, you
can cut first with the long sword, but generally you hit first with the
body and then cut with the long sword. You must research this well and
practice hitting.
Cut and Slash
To cut and to slash are two different things. Cutting, whatever form of
cutting it is, is decisive, with a resolute spirit. Slashing is nothing more
than touching the enemy. Even if you slash strongly, and even if the en-
emy dies instantly, it is slashing. When you cut, your spirit is resolved.
19
You must appreciate this. If you first slash the enemy's hands or legs,
you must then cut strongly. Slashing is in spirit the same as touching.
When you realize this, they become indistinguishable. Learn this well.
Chinese Monkey's Body
The Chinese Monkey's Body is the spirit of not stretching out your
arms. The spirit is to get in quickly, without in the least extending your
arms, before the enemy cuts. If you are intent upon not stretching out
your arms you are effectively far away, the spirit is to go in with your
whole body. When you come to within arm's reach it becomes easy to
move your body in. You must research this well.
Glue and Lacquer Emulsion Body
The spirit of "Glue and Lacquer Emulsion Body" is to stick to the en-
emy and not separate from him. When you approach the enemy, stick
firmly with your head, body and legs. People tend to advance their head
and legs quickly, but their body lags behind. You should stick firmly so
that there is not the slightest gap between the enemy's body and your
body. You must consider this carefully.
To Strive for Height
By "to strive for height" is meant, when you close with the enemy, to
strive with him for superior height without cringing. Stretch your legs,
stretch your hips, and stretch your neck face to face with him. When you
think you have won, and you are the higher, thrust in strongly. You
must learn this.
To Apply Stickiness
When the enemy attacks and you also attack with the long sword, you
should go in with a sticky feeling and fix your long sword against the
enemy's as you receive his cut. The spirit of stickiness is not hitting very
strongly, but hitting so that the long swords do not separate easily. It is
best to approach as calmly as possible when hitting the enemy's long
sword with stickiness. The difference between "Stickiness" and
"Entanglement" is that stickiness is firm and entanglement is weak. You
must appreciate this.
The Body Strike
The Body Strike means to approach the enemy through a gap in his
guard. The spirit is to strike him with your body. Turn your face a little
20
aside and strike the enemy's breast with your left shoulder thrust out.
Approach with the spirit of bouncing the enemy away, striking as
strongly as possible in time with yout breathing. If you achieve this
method of closing with the enemy, you will be able to knock him ten or
twenty feet away. It is possible to strike the enemy until he is dead. Train
well.
Three Ways to Parry His Attack
There are three methods to parry a cut:
First, by dashing the enemy's long sword to your right, as if thrusting
at his eyes, when he makes an attack.
Or, to parry by thrusting the enemy's long sword towards his right eye
with the feeling of snipping his neck.
Or, when you have a short "long sword", without worrying about par-
rying the enemy's long sword, to close with him quickly, thrusting at his
face with your left hand.
These are the three methods of parrying. You must bear in mind that
you can always clench your left hand and thrust at the enemy's face with
your fist. For this it is necessary to train well.
To Stab at the Face
To stab at the face means, when you are in confrontation with the en-
emy, that your spirit is intent of stabbing at his face, following the line of
the blades with the point of your long sword. If you are intent on
stabbing at his face, his face and body will become rideable. When the
enemy becomes as if rideable, there are various opportunities for win-
ning. You must concentrate on this. When fighting and the enemy's body
becomes as if rideable, you can win quickly, so you ought not to forget to
stab at the face. You must pursue the value of this technique through
training.
To Stab at the Heart
To stab at the heart means, when fighting and there are obstructions
above, or to the sides, and whenever it is difficult to cut, to thrust at the
enemy. You must stab the enemy's breast without letting the point of
your long sword waver, showing the enemy the ridge of the blade
square-on, and with the spirit of deflecting his long sword. The spirit of
this principle is often useful when we become tired or for some reason
our long sword will not cut. You must understand the application of this
method.
21
To Scold "Tut-TUT!"
"Scold" means that, when the enemy tries to counter-cut as you attack,
you counter-cut again from below as if thrusting at him, trying to hold
him down. With very quick timing you cut, scolding the enemy. Thrust
up, "Tut!", and cut "TUT!" This timing is encountered time and time
again in exchange of blows. The way to scold Tut-TUT is to time the cut
simultaneously with raising your long sword as if to thrust the enemy.
You must learn this through repetitive practice.
The Smacking Parry
By "smacking parry" is meant that when you clash swords with the en-
emy, you meet his attacking cut on your long sword with a tee-dum, tee-
dum rhythm, smacking his sword and cutting him. The spirit of the
smacking parry is not parrying, or smacking strongly, but smacking the
enemy's long sword in accordance with his attacking cut, primarily in-
tent on quickly cutting him. If you understand the timing of smacking,
however hard your long swords clash together, your swordpoint will not
be knocked back even a little. You must research sufficiently to realize
this.
There are Many Enemies
"There are many enemies" applies when you are fighting one against
many. Draw both sword and companion sword and assume a wide-
stretched left and right attitude. The spirit is to chase the enemies around
from side to side, even though they come from all four directions. Ob-
serve their attacking order, and go to meet first those who attack first.
Sweep your eyes around broadly, carefully examining the attacking or-
der, and cut left and right alternately with your swords. Waiting is bad.
Always quickly re-assume your attitudes to both sides, cut the enemies
down as they advance, crushing them in the direction from which they
attack. Whatever you do, you must drive the enemy together, as if tying
a line of fishes, and when they are seen to be piled up, cut them down
strongly without giving them room to move.
The Advantage when Coming to Blows
You can know how to win through strategy with the long sword, but it
cannot be clearly explained in writing. You must practice diligently in
order to understand how to win.
22
Oral tradition: "The true Way of Strategy is revealed in the long
sword."
One Cut
You can win with certainty with the spirit of "one cut". It is difficult to
attain this if you do not learn strategy well. If you train well in this Way,
strategy will come from your heart and you will be able to win at will.
You must train diligently.
Direct Communication
The spirit of "Direct Communication" is how the true Way of the Ni To
Ichi school is received and handed down.
Oral tradition: "Teach your body strategy."
Recorded in the above book is an outline of Ichi school sword-fighting.
To learn how to win with the long sword in strategy, first learn the
five approaches and the five attitudes, and absorb the Way of the long
sword naturally in your body. You must understand spirit and timing,
handle the long sword naturally, and move body and legs in harmony
with your spirit. Whether beating one man or two, you will then know
values in strategy.
Study the contents of this book, taking one item at a time, and through
fighting with enemies you will gradually come to know the principle of
the Way.
Deliberately, with a patient spirit, absorb the virtue of all this, from
time to time raising your hand in combat. Maintain this spirit whenever
you cross swords with and enemy.
Step by step walk the thousand-mile road.
Study strategy over the years and achieve the spirit of the warrior.
Today is victory over yourself of yesterday; tomorrow is your victory
over lesser men. Next, in order to beat more skillful men, train according
to this book, not allowing your heart to be swayed along a side-track.
Even if you kill an enemy, if it is not based on what you have learned it
is not the true Way.
If you attain this Way of victory, then you will be able to beat several
tens of men. What remains is sword-fighting ability, which you can at-
tain in battles and duels.
23
Chapter 3
THE FIRE BOOK
In this the Fire Book of the Ni To Ichi school of strategy I describe fight-
ing as fire.
In the first place, people think narrowly about the benefit of strategy.
By using only their fingertips, they only know the benefit of three of the
five inches of the wrist. They let a contest be decided, as with the folding
fan, merely by the span of their forearms. They specialise in the small
matter of dexterity, learning such trifles as hand and leg movements
with the bamboo practice sword.
In my strategy, the training for killing enemies is by way of many con-
tests, fighting for survival, discovering the meaning of life and death,
learning the Way of the sword, judging the strength of attacks and un-
derstanding the Way of the "edge and ridge" of the sword.
You cannot profit from small techniques particularly when full armour
is worn. My Way of Strategy is the sure method to win when fighting for
your life one man against five or ten. There is nothing wrong with the
principle "one man can beat ten, so a thousand men can beat ten thou-
sand". You must research this. Of course you cannot assemble a thou-
sand or ten thousand men for everyday training. But you can become a
master of strategy by training alone with a sword, so that you can under-
stand the enemy's strategy, his strength and resources, and come to ap-
preciate how to apply strategy to beat ten thousand enemies.
Any man who wants to master the essence of my strategy must re-
search diligently, training morning and evening. Thus can he polish his
skill, become free from self, and realize extraordinary ability. He will
come to possess miraculous power.
This is the practical result of strategy.
Depending on the Place
Examine your environment.
24
Stand in the sun; that is, take up an attitude with the sun behind you.
If the situation does not allow this, you must try to keep the sun on your
right side. In buildings, you must stand with the entrance behind you or
to your right. Make sure that your rear is unobstructed, and that there is
free space on your left, your right side being occupied with your side at-
titude. At night, if the enemy can be seen, keep the fire behind you and
the entrance to your right, and otherwise take up your attitude as above.
You must look down on the enemy, and take up your attitude on slightly
higher places. For example, the Kamiza in a house is thought of as a high
place.
When the fight comes, always endeavour to chase the enemy around
to your left side. Chase him towards awkward places, and try to keep
him with his back to awkward places. When the enemy gets into an in-
convenient position, do not let him look around, but conscientiously
chase him around and pin him down. In houses, chase the enemy into
the thresholds, lintels, doors, verandas, pillars, and so on, again not let-
ting him see his situation.
Always chase the enemy into bad footholds, obstacles at the side, and
so on, using the virtues of the place to establish predominant positions
from which to fight. You must research and train diligently in this.
The Three Methods to Forestall the Enemy
The first is to forestall him by attacking. This is called Ken No Sen (to
set him up).
Another method is to forestall him as he attacks. This is called Tai No
Sen (to wait for the initiative).
The other method is when you and the enemy attack together. This is
called Tai Tai No Sen (to accompany him and forestall him).
There are no methods of taking the lead other than these three. Be-
cause you can win quickly by taking the lead, it is one of the most im-
portant things in strategy. There are several things involved in taking the
lead. You must make the best of the situation, see through the enemy's
spirit so that you grasp his strategy and defeat him. It is impossible to
write about this in detail.
The First - Ken No Sen
When you decide to attack, keep calm and dash in quickly, forestalling
the enemy. Or you can advance seemingly strongly but with a reserved
spirit, forestalling him with the reserve.
25
Alternatively, advance with as strong a spirit as possible, and when
you reach the enemy move with your feet a little quicker than normal,
unsettling him and overwhelming him sharply.
Or, with your spirit calm, attack with a feeling of constantly crushing
the enemy, from first to last. The spirit is to win in the depths of the en-
emy. These are all Ken No Sen.
The Second - Tai No Sen
When the enemy attacks, remain undisturbed but feign weakness. As
the enemy reaches you, suddenly move away indicating that you intend
to jump aside, then dash in attacking strongly as soon as you see the en-
emy relax. This is one way.
Or, as the enemy attacks, attack still more strongly, taking advantage
of the resulting disorder in his timing to win.
This is the Tai No Sen principle.
The Third - Tai Tai No Sen
When the enemy makes a quick attack, you must attack strongly and
calmly, aim for his weak point as he draws near, and strongly defeat
him.
Or, if the enemy attacks calmly, you must observe his movements and,
with your body rather floating, join in with his movements as he draws
near. Move quickly and cut him strongly.
This is Tai Tai No Sen.
These things cannot be clearly explained in words. You must research
what is written here. In these three ways of forestalling, you must judge
the situation. This does not mean that you always attack first; but if the
enemy attacks first you can lead him around. In strategy, you have ef-
fectively won when you forestall the enemy, so you must train well to at-
tain this.
To Hold Down a Pillow
"To Hold Down a Pillow" means not allowing the enemy's head to rise.
In contests of strategy it is bad to be led about by the enemy. You must
always be able to lead the enemy about. Obviously the enemy will also
be thinking of doing this, but he cannot forestall you if you do not allow
him to come out. In strategy, you must stop the enemy as he attempts to
cut; you must push down his thrust, and throw off his hold when he
tries to grapple. This is the meaning of "to hold down a pillow". When
you have grasped this principle, whatever the enemy tries to bring about
in the fight you will see in advance and suppress it. The spirit is too
26
check his attack at the syllable "at… ", when he jumps check his jump at
the syllable "ju… ", and check his cut at "cu… ".
The important thing in strategy is to suppress the enemy's useful ac-
tions but allow his useless actions. However, doing this alone is defens-
ive. First, you must act according to the Way, suppressing the enemy's
techniques, foiling his plans and thence command him directly. When
you can do this you will be a master of strategy. You must train well and
research "holding down a pillow".
Crossing at a Ford
"Crossing at a ford" means, for example, crossing the sea at a strait, or
crossing over a hundred miles of broad sea at a crossing place. I believe
this "crossing at a ford" occurs often in man's lifetime. It means setting
sail even though your friends stay in harbour, knowing the route, know-
ing the soundness of your ship and the favour of the day. When all the
conditions are meet, and there is perhaps a favourable wind, or a tail-
wind, then set sail. If the wind changes within a few miles of your des-
tination, you must row across the remaining distance without sail.
If you attain this spirit, it applies to everyday life. You must always
think of crossing at a ford.
In strategy also it is important to "cross at a ford". Discern the enemy's
capability and, knowing your own strong points, "cross the ford" at the
advantageous place, as a good captain crosses a sea route. If you succeed
in crossing at the best place, you may take your ease. To cross at a ford
means to attack the enemy's weak point, and to put yourself in an ad-
vantageous position. This is how to win large-scale strategy. The spirit of
crossing at a ford is necessary in both large- and small-scale strategy.
You must research this well.
To Know the Times
"To know the times" means to know the enemy's disposition in battle.
Is it flourishing or waning? By observing the spirit of the enemy's men
and getting the best position, you can work out the enemy's disposition
and move your men accordingly. You can win through this principle of
strategy, fighting from a position of advantage.
When in a duel, you must forestall the enemy and attack when you
have first recognised his school of strategy, perceived his quality and his
strong and weak points. Attack in an unsuspecting manner, knowing his
metre and modulation and the appropriate timing.
27
Knowing the times means, if your ability is high, seeing right into
things. If you are thoroughly conversant with strategy, you will recog-
nise the enemy's intentions and thus have many opportunities to win.
You must sufficiently study this.
To Tread Down the Sword
"To tread down the sword" is a principle often used in strategy. First,
in large scale strategy, when the enemy first discharges bows and guns
and then attacks it is difficult for us to attack if we are busy loading
powder into our guns or notching our arrows. The spirit is to attack
quickly while the enemy is still shooting with bows or guns. The spirit is
to win by "treading down" as we receive the enemy's attack.
In single combat, we cannot get a decisive victory by cutting, with a
"tee-dum tee-dum" feeling, in the wake of the enemy's attacking long
sword. We must defeat him at the start of his attack, in the spirit of tread-
ing him down with the feet, so that he cannot rise again to the attack.
"Treading" does not simply mean treading with the feet. Tread with
the body, tread with the spirit, and, of course, tread and cut with the
long sword. You must achieve the spirit of not allowing the enemy to at-
tack a second time. This is the spirit of forestalling in every sense. Once
at the enemy, you should not aspire just to strike him, but to cling after
the attack. You must study this deeply.
To Know "Collapse"
Everything can collapse. Houses, bodies, and enemies collapse when
their rhythm becomes deranged.
In large-scale strategy, when the enemy starts to collapse, you must
pursue him without letting the chance go. If you fail to take advantage of
your enemies' collapse, they may recover.
In single combat, the enemy sometimes loses timing and collapses. If
you let this opportunity pass, he may recover and not be so negligent
thereafter. Fix your eye on the enemy's collapse, and chase him, attack-
ing so that you do not let him recover. You must do this. The chasing at-
tack is with a strong spirit. You must utterly cut the enemy down so that
he does not recover his position. You must understand how to utterly cut
down the enemy.
To Become the Enemy
"To become the enemy" means to think yourself in the enemy's posi-
tion. In the world people tend to think of a robber trapped in a house as
28
a fortified enemy. However, if we think of "becoming the enemy", we
feel that the whole world is against us and that there is no escape. He
who is shut inside is a pheasant. He who enters to arrest is a hawk. You
must appreciate this.
In large-scale strategy, people are always under the impression that
the enemy is strong, and so tend to become cautious. But if you have
good soldiers, and if you understand the principles of strategy, and if
you know how to beat the enemy, there is nothing to worry about.
In single combat also you must put yourself in the enemy's position. If
you think, "Here is a a master of the Way, who knows the principles of
strategy", then you will surely lose. You must consider this deeply.
To Release Four Hands
"To release four hands" is used when you and the enemy are contend-
ing with the same spirit, and the issue cannot be decided. Abandon this
spirit and win through an alternative resource.
In large-scale strategy, when there is a "four hands" spirit, do not give
up - it is man's existence. Immediately throw away this spirit and win
with a technique the enemy does not expect.
In single combat also, when we think we have fallen into the "four
hands" situation, we must defeat the enemy by changing our mind and
applying a suitable technique according to his condition. You must be
able to judge this.
To Move the Shade
"To move the shade" is used when you cannot see the enemy's spirit.
In large-scale strategy, when you cannot see the enemy's position, in-
dicate that you are about to attack strongly, to discover his resources. It
is easy then to defeat him with a different method once you see his
resources.
In single combat, if the enemy takes up a rear or side attitude of the
long sword so that you cannot see his intention, make a feint attack, and
the enemy will show his long sword, thinking he sees your spirit. Bene-
fiting from what you are shown, you can win with certainty. If you are
negligent you will miss the timing. Research this well.
To Hold Down a Shadow
"Holding down a shadow" is use when you can see the enemy's attack-
ing spirit.
29
In large-scale strategy, when the enemy embarks on an attack, if you
make a show of strongly suppressing his technique, he will change his
mind. Then, altering your spirit, defeat him by forestalling him with a
Void spirit.
Or, in single combat, hold down the enemy's strong intention with a
suitable timing, and defeat him by forestalling him with this timing. You
must study this well.
To Pass On
Many things are said to be passed on. Sleepiness can be passed on, and
yawning can be passed on. Time can be passed on also.
In large-scale strategy, when the enemy is agitated and shows an in-
clination to rush, do not mind in the least. Make a show of complete
calmness, and the enemy will be taken by this and will become relaxed.
When you see that this spirit has been passed on, you can bring about
the enemy's defeat by attacking strongly with a Void spirit.
In single combat, you can win by relaxing your body and spirit and
then, catching on to the moment the enemy relaxes, attack strongly and
quickly, forestalling him. What is know as "getting someone drunk" is
similar to this. You can also infect the enemy with a bored, careless, or
weak spirit. You must study this well.
To Cause Loss of Balance
Many things can cause a loss of balance. One cause is danger, another
is hardship, and another is surprise. You must research this.
In large-scale strategy it is important to cause loss of balance. Attack
without warning where the enemy is not expecting it, and while his spir-
it is undecided follow up your advantage and, having the lead, defeat
him.
Or, in single combat, start by making a show of being slow, then sud-
denly attack strongly. Without allowing him space for breath to recover
form the fluctuation of spirit, you must grasp the opportunity to win.
Get the feel of this.
To Frighten
Fright often occurs, caused by the unexpected.
In large-scale strategy you can frighten the enemy not just by what
you present to their eyes, but by shouting, making a small force seem
large, or by threatening them from the flank without warning. These
30
things all frighten. You can win by making best use of the enemy's
frightened rhythm.
In single combat, also, you must use the advantage of taking the en-
emy unawares by frightening him with your body, long sword, or voice,
to defeat him. You should research this well.
To Soak In
When you have come to grips and are striving together with the en-
emy, and you realize that you cannot advance, you "soak in" and become
one with the enemy. You can win by applying a suitable technique while
you are mutually entangled.
In battles involving large numbers as well as in fights with small num-
bers, you can often win decisively with the advantage of knowing how
to "soak" into the enemy, whereas, were you to draw apart, you would
lose the chance to win. Research this well.
To Injure the Corners
It is difficult to move strong things by pushing directly, so you should
"injure the corners".
In large-scale strategy, it is beneficial to strike at the corners of the
enemy's force. If the corners are overthrown, the spirit of the whole body
will be overthrown. To defeat the enemy you must follow up the attack
when the corners have fallen.
In single combat, it is easy to win once the enemy collapses. This hap-
pens when you injure the "corners" of his body, and thus weaken him. It
is important to know how to do this, so you must research deeply.
To Throw into Confusion
This means making the enemy lose resolve.
In large-scale strategy we can use our troops to confuse the enemy on
the field. Observing the enemy's spirit, we can make him think, "Here?
There? Like that? Like this? Slow? Fast?". Victory is certain when the en-
emy is caught up in a rhythm which confuses his spirit.
In single combat, we can confuse the enemy by attacking with varied
techniques when the chance arises. Feint a thrust or cut, or make the en-
emy think ou are going to close with him, and when he is confused you
can easily win. This is the essence of fighting, and you must research it
deeply.
The Three Shouts
31
The three shouts are divided thus: before, during and after. Shout ac-
cording to the situation. The voice is a thing of life. We shout against
fires and so on, against the wind and the waves. The voice shows energy.
In large-scale strategy, at the start of battle we shout as loudly as pos-
sible. During the fight, the voice is low-pitched, shouting out as we at-
tack. After the contest, we shout in the wake of our victory. These are the
three shouts.
In single combat, we make as if to cut and shout "Ei!" at the same time
to disturb the enemy, then in the wake of our shout we cut with the long
sword. We shout after we have cut down the enemy - this is to announce
victory. This is called "sen go no koe" (before and after voice). We do not
shout simultaneously with flourishing the long sword. We shout during
the fight to get into rhythm. Research this deeply.
To Mingle
In battles, when the armies are in confrontation, attack the enemy's
strong points and, when you see that they are beaten back, quickly sep-
arate and attack yet another strong point on the periphery of his force.
The spirit of this is like a winding mountain path.
This is an important fighting method for one man against many. Strike
down the enemies in one quarter, or drive them back, then grasp the tim-
ing and attack further strong points to right and left, as if on a winding
mountain path, weighing up the enemies' disposition. When you know
the enemies' level attack strongly with no trace of retreating spirit.
What is meant by "mingling" is the spirit of advancing and becoming
engaged with the enemy, and not withdrawing even one step. You must
understand this.
To Crush
This means to crush the enemy regarding him as being weak.
In large-scale strategy, when we see that the enemy has few men, or if
he has many men but his spirit is weak and disordered, we knock the hat
over his eyes, crushing him utterly. If we crush lightly, he may recover.
You must learn the spirit of crushing as if with a hand-grip.
In single combat, if the enemy is less skilful than ourself, if his rhythm
is disorganised, or if he has fallen into evasive or retreating attitudes, we
must crush him straightaway, with no concern for his presence and
without allowing him space for breath. It is essential to crush him all at
once. The primary thing is not to let him recover his position even a little.
You must research this deeply.
32
The Mountain-Sea Change
The "mountain-sea" spirit means that it is bad to repeat the same thing
several times when fighting the enemy. There may be no help but to do
something twice, but do not try it a third time. If you once make an at-
tack and fail, there is little chance of success if you use the same ap-
proach again. If you attempt a technique which you have previously
tried unsuccessfully and fail yet again, then you must change your at-
tacking method.
If the enemy thinks of the mountains, attack like the sea; and if he
thinks of the sea, attack like the mountains. You must research this
deeply.
To Penetrate the Depths
When we are fighting with the enemy, even when it can be seen that
we can win on the surface with the benefit of the Way, if his spirit is not
extinguished, he may be beaten superficially yet undefeated in spirit
deep inside. With this principle of "penetrating the depths" we can des-
troy the enemy's spirit in its depths, demoralising him by quickly chan-
ging our spirit. This often occurs.
Penetrating the depths means penetrating with the long sword, penet-
rating with the body, and penetrating with the spirit. This cannot be un-
derstood in a generalisation.
Once we have crushed the enemy in the depths, there is no need to re-
main spirited. But otherwise we must remain spirited. If the enemy re-
mains spirited it is difficult to crush him. You must train in penetrating
the depths for large-scale strategy and also single combat.
To Renew
"To renew" applies when we are fighting with the enemy, and an en-
tangled spirit arises where there is no possible resolution. We must aban-
don our efforts, think of the situation in a fresh spirit then win in the new
rhythm. To renew, when we are deadlocked with the enemy, means that
without changing our circumstance we change our spirit and win
through a different technique.
It is necessary to consider how "to renew" also applies in large-scale
strategy. Research this diligently.
Rat's Head, Ox's Neck
33
"Rat's head and ox's neck" means that, when we are fighting with the
enemy and both he and we have become occupied with small points in
an entangled spirit, we must always think of the Way of Strategy as be-
ing both a rat's head and an ox's neck. Whenever we have become preoc-
cupied with small detail, we must suddenly change into a large spirit, in-
terchanging large with small.
This is one of the essences of strategy. It is necessary that the warrior
think in this spirit in everyday life. You must not depart from this spirit
in large-scale strategy nor in single combat.
The Commander Knows the Troops
"The commander knows the troops" applies everywhere in fights in
my Way of strategy. Using the wisdom of strategy, think of the enemy as
your own troops. When you think in this way you can move him at will
and be able to chase him around. You become the general and the enemy
becomes your troops. You must master this.
To Let Go the Hilt
There are various kinds of spirit involved in letting go the hilt. There is
the spirit of winning without a sword. There is also the spirit of holding
the long sword but not winning. The various methods cannot be ex-
pressed in writing. You must train well.
The Body of a Rock
When you have mastered the Way of Strategy you can suddenly make
your body like a rock, and ten thousand things cannot touch you. This is
the body of a rock.
You will not be moved. Oral tradition.
What is recorded above is what has been constantly on my mind about
Ichi school sword fencing, written down as it came to me. This is the first
time I have written about my technique, and the order of things is a bit
confused. It is difficult to express it clearly.
This book is a spiritual guide for the man who wishes to learn the
Way.
My heart has been inclined to the Way of Strategy from my youth on-
wards. I have devoted myself to training my hand, tempering my body,
and attaining the many spiritual attitudes of sword fencing. If we watch
men of other schools discussing theory, and concentrating on techniques
with the hands, even though they seem skilful to watch, they have not
the slightest true spirit.
34
Of course, men who study in this way think they are training the body
and spirit, but it is an obstacle to the true Way, and its bad influence re-
mains for ever. Thus the true Way of Strategy is becoming decadent and
dying out.
The true Way of sword fencing is the craft of defeating the enemy in a
fight, and nothing other than this. If you attain and adhere to the wis-
dom of my strategy, you need never doubt that you will win.
35
Chapter 4
THE WIND BOOK
In strategy you must know the Ways of other schools, so I have written
about various other traditions of strategys in this the Wind Book.
Without knowledge of the Ways of other schools, it is difficult to un-
derstand the essence of my Ichi school. Looking at other schools we find
some that specialise in techniques of strength using extra-long swords.
Some schools study the Way of the short sword, known as kodachi.
Some schools teach dexterity in large numbers of sword techniques,
teaching attitudes of the sword as the "surface" and the Way as the
"interior".
That none of these are the true Way I show clearly in the interior of
this book - all the vices and virtues and rights and wrongs. My Ichi
school is different. Other schools make accomplishments their means of
livelihood, growing flowers and decoratively colouring articles in order
to sell them. This is definitely not the Way of Strategy.
Some of the world's strategists are concerned only with sword-fencing,
and limit their training to flourishing the long sword and carriage of the
body. But is dexterity alone sufficient to win? This is not the essence of
the Way.
I have recorded the unsatisfactory point of other schools one by one in
this book. You must study these matters deeply to appreciate the benefit
of my Ni To Ichi school.
Other Schools Using Extra-Long Swords
Some other schools have a liking for extra-long swords. From the point
of view of my strategy these must been seen as weak schools. This is be-
cause they do not appreciate the principle of cutting the enemy by any
means. Their preference is for the extra-long sword and, relying on the
virtue of its length, they think to defeat the enemy from a distance.
In this world it is said, "One inch gives the hand advantage", but these
are the idle words of one who does not know strategy. It shows the
36
inferior strategy of a weak spirit that men should be dependent on the
length of their sword, fighting from a distance without the benefit of
strategy.
I expect there is a case for the school in question liking extra-long
swords as part of its doctrine, but if we compare this to real life it is un-
reasonable. Surely we need not necessarily be defeated if we are using a
short sword, and have no long sword?
It is difficult for these people to cut the enemy when at close quarters
because of the length of the long sword. The blade path is large so the
long sword is an encumbrance, and they are at a disadvantage compared
to the man armed with a short companion sword.
From olden times it has been said: "Great and small go together.". So
do not unconditionally dislike extra-long swords. What I dislike is the in-
clination towards the long sword. If we consider large-scale strategy, we
can think of large forces in terms of long swords, and small forces as
short swords. Cannot few me give battle against many? There are many
instances of few men overcoming many.
Your strategy is of no account if when called on to fight in a confined
space your heart is inclined to the long sword, or if you are in a house
armed only with your companion sword.
Besides, some men have not the strength of others. In my doctrine, I
dislike preconceived, narrow spirit. You must study this well.
The Strong Long Sword Spirit in Other Schools
You should not speak of strong and weak long swords. If you just
wield the long sword in a strong spirit your cutting will be coarse, and if
you use the sword coarsely you will have difficulty in winning.
If you are concerned with the strength of your sword, you will try to
cut unreasonably strongly, and will not be able to cut at all. It is also bad
to try to cut strongly when testing the sword. Whenever you cross
swords with an enemy you must not think of cutting him either strongly
or weakly; just think of cutting and killing him. Be intent solely upon
killing the enemy. Do not try to cut strongly and, of course, do not think
of cutting weakly. You should only be concerned with killing the enemy.
If you rely on strength, when you hit the enemy's sword you will inev-
itably hit too hard. If you do this, your own sword will be carried along
as a result. Thus the saying, "The strongest hand wins", has no meaning.
In large-scale strategy, if you have a strong army and are relying on
strength to win, but the enemy also has a strong army, the battle will be
fierce. This is the same for both sides.
37
Without the correct principle the fight cannot be won. The spirit of my
school is to win through the wisdom of strategy, paying no attention to
trifles. Study this well.
Use of the Shorter Long Sword in Other Schools
Using a shorter long sword is not the true Way to win.
In ancient times, tachi and katana meant long and short swords. Men
of superior strength in the world can wield even a long sword lightly, so
there is no case for their liking the short sword. They also make use of
the length of spears and halberds. Some men use a shorter long sword
with the intention of jumping in and stabbing the enemy at the un-
guarded moment when he flourishes his sword. This inclination is bad.
To aim for the enemy's unguarded moment is completely defensive,
and undesirable at close quarters with the enemy. Furthermore, you can-
not use the method of jumping inside his defence with a short sword if
there are many enemies. Some men think that if they go against many
enemies with a shorter long sword they can unrestrictedly frisk around
cutting in sweeps, but they have to parry cuts continuously, and eventu-
ally become entangled with the enemy. This is inconsistent with the true
Way of Strategy.
The sure Way to win thus is to chase the enemy around in confusing
manner, causing him to jump aside, with your body held strongly and
straight. The same principle applies to large-scale strategy. The essence
of strategy is to fall upon the enemy in large numbers and bring about
his speedy downfall. By their study of strategy, people of the world get
used to countering, evading and retreating as the normal thing. They be-
come set in this habit, so can easily be paraded around by the enemy.
The Way of Strategy is straight and true. You must chase the enemy
around and make him obey your spirit.
Other Schools with many Methods of using the Long Sword
Placing a great deal of importance on the attitudes of the long sword is
a mistaken way of thinking. What is known in the world as "attitude" ap-
plies when there is no enemy. The reason is that this has been a preced-
ent since ancient times, and there should be no such thing as "This is the
modern way to do it" in dueling. You must force the enemy into incon-
venient situations.
Attitudes are for situations in which you are not to be moved. That is,
for garrisoning castles, battle array, and so on, showing the spirit of not
being moved even by a strong assault. In the Way of dueling, however,
38
you must always be intent upon taking the lead and attacking. Attitude
is the spirit of awaiting an attack. You must appreciate this.
In duels of strategy you must move the opponent's attitude. Attack
where his spirit is lax, throw him into confusion, irritate and terrify him.
Take advantage of the enemy's rhythm when he is unsettled and you can
win.
I dislike the defensive spirit know as "attitude". Therefore, in my Way,
there is something called "Attitude-No Attitude".
In large-scale strategy we deploy our troops for battle bearing in mind
our strength, observing the enemy's numbers, and noting the details of
the battle field. This is at the start of the battle.
The spirit of attacking first is completely different from the spirit of be-
ing attacked. Bearing an attack well, with a strong attitude, and parrying
the enemy's attack well, is like making a wall of spears and halberds.
When you attack the enemy, your spirit must go to the extent of pulling
the stakes out of a wall and using them as spears and halberds. You must
examine this well.
Fixing the Eyes in Other Schools
Some schools maintain that the eyes should be fixed on the enemy's
long sword. Some schools fix the eyes on the hands. Some fix the eyes on
the face, and some fix the eyes on the feet, and so on. If you fix the eyes
on these places your spirit can become confused and your strategy
thwarted.
I will explain this in detail. Footballers do not fix their eyes on the ball,
but by good play on the field they can perform well. When you become
accustomed to something, you are not limited to the use of your eyes.
People such as master musicians have the music score in front of their
nose, or flourish swords in several ways when they have mastered the
Way, but this does not mean that they fix their eyes on these things spe-
cifically, or that they make pointless movements of the sword. It means
that they can see naturally.
In the Way of Strategy, when you have fought many times you will
easily be able to appraise the speed and position of the enemy's sword,
and having mastery of the Way you will see the weight of his spirit. In
strategy, fixing the eyes means gazing at the man's heart.
In large-scale strategy the area to watch is the enemy's strength.
"Perception" and "sight" are the two methods of seeing. Perception con-
sists of concentrating strongly on the enemy's spirit, observing the
39
condition of the battlefield, fixing the gaze strongly, seeing the progress
of the fight and the changes of advantages. This is the sure way to win.
In single combat you must not fix the eyes on the details. As I said be-
fore, if you fix your eyes on details and neglect important things, your
spirit will become bewildered, and victory will escape you. Research this
principle well and train diligently.
Use of the Feet in Other Schools
There are various methods of using the feet: floating foot, jumping
foot, springing foot, treading foot, crow's foot, and such nimble walking
methods. From the point of view of my strategy, these are all
unsatisfactory.
I dislike floating foot because the feet always tend to float during the
fight. The Way must be trod firmly.
Neither do I like jumping foot, because it encourages the habit of
jumping, and a jumpy spirit. However much you jump, there is no real
justification for it; so jumping is bad.
Springing foot causes a springing spirit which is indecisive.
Treading foot is a "waiting" method, and I especially dislike it.
Apart from these, there are various fast walking methods, such as
crow's foot, and so on.
Sometimes, however, you may encounter the enemy on marshland,
swampy ground, river valleys, stony ground, or narrow roads, in which
situations you cannot jump or move the feet quickly.
In my strategy, the footwork does not change. I always walk as I usu-
ally do in the street. You must never lose control of your feet. According
to the enemy's rhythm, move fast or slowly, adjusting you body not too
much and not too little.
Carrying the feet is important also in large-scale strategy. This is be-
cause, if you attack quickly and thoughtlessly without knowing the
enemy's spirit, your rhythm will become deranged and you will not be
able to win. Or, if you advance too slowly, you will not be able to take
advantage of the enemy's disorder, the opportunity to win will escape,
and you will not be able to finish the fight quickly. You must win by
seizing upon the enemy's disorder and derangement, and by not accord-
ing him even a little hope of recovery. Practice this well.
Speed in Other Schools
40
Speed is not part of the true Way of Strategy. Speed implies that things
seem fast or slow, according to whether or not they are in rhythm.
Whatever the Way, the master of strategy does not appear fast.
Some people can walk as fast as a hundred or a hundred and twenty
miles in a day, but this does not mean that they run continuously from
morning till night. Unpracticed runners may seem to have been running
all day, but their performance is poor.
In the Way of dance, accomplished performers can sing while dancing,
but when beginners try this they slow down and their spirit becomes
busy. The "old pine tree" melody beaten on a leather drum is tranquil,
but when beginners try this they slow down and their spirit becomes
busy. Very skilful people can manage a fast rhythm, but it is bad to beat
hurriedly. If you try to beat too quickly you will get out of time. Of
course, slowness is bad. Really skilful people never get out of time, and
are always deliberate, and never appear busy. From this example, the
principle can be seen.
What is known as speed is especially bad in the Way of Strategy. The
reason for this is that depending on the place, marsh or swamp and so
on, it may not be possible to move the body and legs together quickly.
Still less will you be able to cut quickly if you have a long sword in this
situation. If you try to cut quickly, as if using a fan or short sword, you
will not actually cut even a little. You must appreciate this.
In large-scale strategy also, a fast busy spirit is undesirable. The spirit
must be that of holding down a pillow, then you will not be even a little
late.
When your opponent is hurrying recklessly, you must act contrarily
and keep calm. You must not be influenced by the opponent. Train dili-
gently to attain this spirit.
"Interior" and "Surface" in Other Schools
There is no "interior" nor "surface" in strategy.
The artistic accomplishments usually claim inner meaning and secret
tradition, and "interior" and "gate", but in combat there is no such thing
as fighting on the surface, or cutting with the interior. When I teach my
Way, I first teach by training in techniques which are easy for the pupil
to understand, a doctrine which is easy to understand. I gradually en-
deavour to explain the deep principle, points which it is hardly possible
to comprehend, according to the pupil's progress. In any event, because
the way to understanding is through experience, I do not speak of
"interior" and "gate".
41
In this world, if you go into the mountains, and decide to go deeper
and yet deeper, instead you will emerge at the gate. Whatever the Way,
it has an interior, and it is sometimes a good thing to point out the gate.
In strategy, we cannot say what is concealed and what is revealed.
Accordingly I dislike passing on my Way through written pledges and
regulations. Perceiving the ability of my pupils, I teach the direct Way,
remove the bad influence of other schools, and gradually introduce them
to the true Way of the warrior.
The method of teaching my strategy is with a trustworthy spirit.
You must train diligently. I have tried to record an outline of the
strategy of other schools in the above nine sections. I could now continue
by giving a specific account of these schools one by one, from the "gate"
to the "interior", but I have intentionally not named the schools or their
main points. The reason for this is that different branches of schools give
different interpretations of the doctrines. In as much as men's opinions
differ, so there must be differing ideas on the same matter. Thus no one
man's conception is valid for any school.
I have shown the general tendencies of other schools on nine points. If
we look at them from an honest viewpoint, we see that people always
tend to like long swords or short swords, and become concerned with
strength in both large and small matters. You can see why I do not deal
with the "gates" of other schools.
In my Ichi school of the long sword there is neither gate nor interior.
There is no inner meaning in sword attitudes. You must simply keep
your spirit true to realize the virtue of strategy.
42
Chapter 5
THE BOOK OF THE VOID
The Ni To Ichi Way of Strategy is recorded in this the Book of the Void.
What is called the spirit of the void is where there is nothing. It is not
included in man's knowledge. Of course the void is nothingness. By
knowing things that exist, you can know that which does not exist. That
is the void.
People in this world look at things mistakenly, and think that what
they do not understand must be the void. This is not the true void. It is
bewilderment.
In the Way of Strategy, also, those who study as warriors think that
whatever they cannot understand in their craft is the void. This is not the
true void.
To attain the Way of Strategy as a warrior you must study fully other
martial arts and not deviate even a little from the Way of the warrior.
With your spirit settled, accumulate practice day by day, and hour by
hour. Polish the twofold spirit heart and mind, and sharpen the twofold
gaze perception and sight. When your spirit is not in the least clouded,
when the clouds of bewilderment clear away, there is the true void.
Until you realize the true Way, whether in Buddhism or in common
sense, you may think that things are correct and in order. However, if we
look at things objectively, from the viewpoint of laws of the world, we
see various doctrines departing from the true Way. Know well this spirit,
and with forthrightness as the foundation and the true spirit as the Way.
Enact strategy broadly, correctly and openly.
Then you will come to think of things in a wide sense and, taking the
void as the Way, you will see the Way as void.
In the void is virtue, and no evil. Wisdom has existence, principle has
existence, the Way has existence, spirit is nothingness.
Twelfth day of the fifth month, second year of Shoho (1645).
Teruro Magonojo
43
SHINMEN MUSASHI
44
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and spends some time talking about Sen no Rikyu and his contri-
bution to the Japanese Tea Ceremony.
According to Tomonobu Imamichi, Heidegger's concept of Dasein
in Sein und Zeit was inspired — although Heidegger remains si-
lent on this — by Okakura Kakuzo's concept of das-in-dem-Welt-
sein (to be in the being of the world) expressed in The Book of Tea
to describe Zhuangzi's philosophy, which Imamichi's teacher had
offerred to Heidegger in 1919, after having followed lessons with
him the year before.
Howard Phillips Lovecraft
The Call of Cthulhu
"The Call of Cthulhu" is one of H. P. Lovecraft's best-known short
stories. Written in the summer of 1926, it was first published in
Weird Tales, February 1928. It is the only story written by Love-
craft in which the extraterrestrial entity Cthulhu himself makes a
major appearance.
It is written in a documentary style, with three independent nar-
ratives linked together by the device of a narrator discovering
notes left by a deceased relative. The narrator pieces together the
whole truth and disturbing significance of the information he pos-
sesses, illustrating the story's first line: "The most merciful thing in
the world, I think, is the inability of the human mind to correlate
all its contents. We live on a placid island of ignorance in the
midst of black seas of infinity; and it was not meant that we
should voyage far."
48
www.feedbooks.com
Food for the mind
49

About Miyamoto: Miyamoto Musashi (c.1584–June 13 (Japanese calendar: May 19), 1645), also known as Shinmen Takezō, Miyamoto Bennosuke, or by his Buddhist name Niten Dōraku was a famous Japanese samurai, and is considered by many to have been one of the most skilled swordsmen in history. Musashi, as he is often simply known, became legendary through his outstanding swordsmanship in numerous duels, even from a very young age. He is the founder of the Hyōhō Niten Ichi-ryū or Nitenryū style of swordsmanship and the author of The Book of Five Rings, a book on strategy, tactics, and philosophy that is still studied today. Source: Wikipedia Note: This book is brought to you by Feedbooks http://www.feedbooks.com Strictly for personal use, do not use this file for commercial purposes.

2

Introduction
I have been many years training in the Way of Strategy, called Ni Ten Ichi Ryu, and now I think I will explain it in writing for the first time. It is now during the first ten days of the tenth month in the twentieth year of Kanei (1645). I have climbed mountain Iwato of Higo in Kyushu to pay homage to heaven, pray to Kwannon, and kneel before Buddha. I am a warrior of Harima province, Shinmen Musashi No Kami Fujiwara No Genshin, age sixty years. From youth my heart has been inclined toward the Way of Strategy. My first duel was when I was thirteen, I struck down a strategist of the Shinto school, one Arima Kihei. When I was sixteen I struck down an able strategist Tadashima Akiyama. When I was twenty-one I went up to the capital and met all manner of strategists, never once failing to win in many contests. After that I went from province to province dueling with strategist of various schools, and not once failed to win even though I had as many as sixty encounters. This was between the ages of thirteen and twenty-eight or twenty-nine. When I reached thirty I looked back on my past. The previous victories were not due to my having mastered strategy. Perhaps it was natural ability, or the order of heaven, or that other schools' strategy was inferior. After that I studied morning and evening searching for the principle, and came to realize the Way of Strategy when I was fifty. Since then I have lived without following any particular Way. Thus with the virtue of strategy I practice many arts and abilities - all things with no teacher. To write this book I did not use the law of Buddha or the teachings of Confucius, neither old war chronicles nor books on martial tactics. I take up my brush to explain the true spirit of this Ichi school as it is mirrored in the Way of heaven and Kwannon. The time is the night of the tenth day of the tenth month, at the hour of the tiger (3-5 a.m.)

3

Chapter

1

THE GROUND BOOK
Strategy is the craft of the warrior. Commanders must enact the craft, and troopers should know this Way. There is no warrior in the world today who really understands the Way of Strategy. There are various Ways. There is the Way of salvation by the law of Buddha, the Way of Confucius governing the Way of learning, the Way of healing as a doctor, as a poet teaching the Way of Waka, tea, archery, and many arts and skills. Each man practices as he feels inclined. It is said the warrior's is the twofold Way of pen and sword, and he should have a taste for both Ways. Even if a man has no natural ability he can be a warrior by sticking assiduously to both divisions of the Way. Generally speaking, the Way of the warrior is resolute acceptance of death. Although not only warriors but priests, women, peasants and lowlier folk have been known to die readily in the cause of duty or out of shame, this is a different thing. The warrior is different in that studying the Way of Strategy is based on overcoming men. By victory gained in crossing swords with individuals, or enjoining battle with large numbers, we can attain power and fame for ourselves or our lord. This is the virtue of strategy. The Way of Strategy In China and Japan practitioners of the Way have been known as "masters of strategy". Warriors must learn this Way. Recently there have been people getting on in the world as strategists, but they are usually just sword-fencers. The attendants of the Kashima Kantori shrines of the province Hitachi received instruction from the gods, and made schools based on this teaching, traveling from country to country instructing men. This is the recent meaning of strategy. In olden times strategy was listed among the Ten Abilities and Seven Arts as a beneficial practice. It was certainly an art but as a beneficial

4

Houses of the nobility. The Way of the warrior is to master the virtue of his weapons. That was a true saying. the artisan and the merchant. and the plans of palaces. They speak of "This Dojo" and "That Dojo". The foreman carpenter must know the architectural theory of towers and temples. the commander must know natural rules. the nut has become less than th flower. Thus he passes through life. This is the Way of the merchant. The Way of the merchant is always to live by taking profit. These are the four Ways of the gentleman. In this kind of Way of Strategy. ponder over this book. the Four houses. the tradition of the house. farmers. houses of warriors. ruin of houses. both those teaching and those learning the way are concerned with colouring and showing off their technique. the disciple is as thread. If you want to learn the craft of war. and must employ men to raise up 5 . The true value of swordfencing cannot be seen within the confines of sword-fencing technique. They are looking for profit. the farmer. artisans and merchants. and the Way of Strategy is similar in that there is a plan of campaign. Like the foreman carpenter. he sees springs through to autumns with an eye on the changes of season. This is the Way of the foreman. first to lay his plans with a true measure and then perform his work according to plan. As if with the nut and the flower. Using agricultural instruments. carrying the weaponry of his Way. and the rules of the country. and the name of the house. Thirdly the gentleman warrior. The wine maker obtains his ingredients and puts them to use to make his living. Comparing the Way of the Carpenter to Strategy The comparison with carpentry is through the connection with houses. so must he not have a little taste for this? Fourthly the Way of the artisan.practice it was not limited to sword-fencing. thriving of houses. You must practice constantly. Men use equipment to sell their own selves. the style of the house. There are four Ways in which men pass through life: as gentlemen. If a gentleman dislikes strategy he will not appreciate the benefit of weaponry. The Way of the farmer. and the rules of houses. The carpenter uses a master plan of the building. If we look at the world we see arts for sale. Someone once said "Immature strategy is the cause of grief". Second is the Way of the merchant. The teacher is as a needle. The Way of the carpenter is to become proficient in the use of his tools. trying to hasten the bloom of the flower.

and encourage them when necessary. In the construction of houses. The foreman carpenter allots his men work according to their ability. This is the craft of the carpenters. You ought to think deeply about this. doors. having tools which will cut well. and that the work is truly planed so that it meets well and is not merely finished in sections. straight timber with small defects is used for the inner pillars. The carpenter's attainment is. deeply consider the things written in this book one at a time. is used for the thresholds. the carpenter sharpens his own tools. and later for firewood. Those of poor ability lay the floor joists. He carries his equipment in his tool box. though it be gnarled and knotted. that the joints are not misaligned. lintels. He should know their morale and spirit. When the carpenter becomes skilled and understands measures he can become a foreman. and sliding doors. The Way of the foreman carpenter is the same as the Way of the commander of a warrior house. to make small shrines. giving as excellent a finish as his skill will allow. Timber which is weak or knotted throughout should be used as scaffolding. If the foreman knows and deploys his men well the finished work will be good. makers of sliding doors. and so on. This is the same as the principle of strategy. shapes floorboards and shelves with a plane. Timbers of the finest appearance. Floor layers. The foreman should take into account the abilities and limitations of his men. even if a little weak. He makes columns and girders with an axe. The attainment of the carpenter is that his work is not warped. circulating among them and asking nothing unreasonable. If you want to learn this Way. paper lanterns. chopping boards and pot-lids. and works under the direction of his foreman. and those of lesser ability carve wedges and do such miscellaneous work. choice of woods is made. These are the specialties of the carpenter. thresholds and lintels. This is essential. Good strong timber. ceilings and so on. You must do sufficient research. cuts fine openwork and carvings accurately. can always be used discreetly in construction.houses. The Way of Strategy Like a trooper. Straight un-knotted timber of good appearance is used for the revealed pillars. Things are similar for the trooper. Outline of the Five Books of this Book of Strategy 6 . tables. writing shelves.

In strategy it is necessary to treat training as part of normal life with your spirit unchanging. In short. Second is the Water book.The Way is shown as five books concerning different aspects. like building a great Buddha from a one foot model. Know the smallest things and the biggest things. The spirit of defeating a man is the same for ten million men. As if it were a straight road mapped out on the ground. it is difficult for large numbers of men to change position. Thus I clearly explain the strategies of the world. Fire. This is tradition. Water adopts the shape of its receptacle. You must appreciate that spirit can become big or small. You must appreciate this. The essence of this book is that you must train day and night in order to make quick decisions. This book is not concerned with my Ichi school but with other schools of strategy. to know ten thousand things. The Way of battles is the same for man to man fights and for ten thousand a side battles. the shallowest things and the deepest things. and your spirit diverges. Third is the Fire book. It is difficult to realize the true Way just through sword-fencing. By Wind I mean old traditions. and it is not unreasonable that this 7 . so his movements are difficult to predict. To all Ways there are side-tracks. Other strategies have come to be thought of as mere sword-fencing. and so it is with battles. What is big is easy to perceive: what is small is difficult to perceive. it is sometimes a trickle and sometimes a wild sea. when you freely beat one man. By the clarity. this will later become a large divergence. I cannot write in detail how this is done. Water has a clear blue colour. Water. The strategist makes small things into big things. present-day traditions. The spirit of fire is fierce. This book is about fighting. Thus combat in battle is described in the Fire book. Wind (tradition). whether the fire be small or big. If you master the principles of sword-fencing. and Void (the illusionary nature of worldly things) The body of the Way of Strategy from the viewpoint of my Ichi school is explained in the Ground book. you may think you are obeying a good Way but objectively it is not the true Way. the first book is called the Ground book. so their movements can be easily predicted. Things of Ichi school are written in this the Water book. the spirit becomes like water. The principle of strategy is having one thing. you beat any man in the world. You must realize this. and family traditions of strategy. If you are following the true way and diverge a little. If you study a Way daily. things of Ichi school are shown in this book. Fourthly the Wind book. It is difficult to know yourself if you do not know others. With water as the basis. An individual can easily change his mind. These are Ground.

the Way to learn this is to train with two long swords. you must use both hands. one in each hand. halberds are difficult to wield. when running on uneven roads. All this is the Way of the Void. However. If you hold a sword with both hands. whatever the reason. It is encumbering to hold a sword in both hands when you are on horseback. The benefit of my strategy. The Way of strategy is the Way of nature. on swampy ground. The spear and the halberd are weapons which are carried out of doors. knowing rhythm of any situation. or in a crowd of people. Attaining this principle means not attaining the principle. the book of the Void. a warrior carries two swords at his belt. it is difficult to wield it freely to left and right. To hold the long sword in both hands is not the true Way. you will be able to hit the enemy naturally and strike naturally. muddy rice fields. stony ground. and to die with a weapon yet undrawn. but swords and companion swords can be carried in one hand. I have explained what is commonly meant by strategy in other schools in the Tradition (Wind) book. you will gain the power of the Way and wield the sword well. but everything is difficult at first. When you become used to wielding the long sword. It is false not to do so. both commanders and troopers. you must make fullest use of your weaponry. By void I mean that which has no beginning and no end. In olden times these were called the long sword and the sword. The Name Ichi Ryu Ni To (One school . for if you carry a bow or spear or other arms in your left hand you have only one hand free for the long sword. Fifthly. "Nito Ichi Ryu" shows the advantages of using both swords. This does not apply to large weapons such as the spear or halberd. 8 . I intend to show how to follow the true Way according to nature in the book of the Void. Bows are difficult to draw. When you appreciate the power of nature. when it is difficult to cut an enemy down with one hand. as you become accustomed to the bow so your pull will become stronger.two swords) Warriors. Students of the Ichi school Way of Strategy should train from the start with the sword and the long sword in either hand.should be so. Let it suffice to say that in our land. carry two swords at their belt. although it includes sword-fencing. It will seem difficult at first. It is the Way of the warrior. This is a truth: when you sacrifice your life. nowadays they are known as the sword and the companion sword. It is not difficult to wield a sword in one hand. so my method is to carry the sword in one hand. lies in a separate principle.

The Benefit of Weapons in Strategy There is a time and place for use of weapons. According to this Ichi school. one man is the same as ten thousand. Men must polish their particular Way. those who master the bow are called archers. those who master the spear are called spearmen. From one thing. spears and halberds are all warriors' equipment they are certainly part of strategy. those who master the gun are called marksmen. In my strategy. the Way of the Ichi school is the spirit of winning. When you attain the Way of Strategy there will not be one thing you cannot see. or when you are engaged closely with an opponent. guns.As I will explain in the second book. The best use of the companion sword is in a confined space. so a hundred men can beat a thousand. if you know the Way broadly you will see it in everything. The Way of the warrior does not include other Ways. Because bows. This is the first thing to realize. To master the virtue of the long sword is to govern the world and oneself. those who master the halberd are called halberdiers. know ten thousand things. and especially if you want to take a prisoner. and a thousand can beat ten thousand. whatever the weapon and whatever its size. If he attains the virtue of the long sword. 9 . In short. The principle is "strategy by means of the long sword". The Benefit of the Two Characters Reading "Strategy" Masters of the long sword are called strategists. so this strategy is the complete warrior's craft. certain traditions. You must study hard. one man can beat ten men. As for the other military arts. thus the long sword is the basis of strategy. The long sword should be wielded broadly and the companion sword closely. and yet you can also win with a short weapon. Buddhism. But even though these are not part of the Way. It is better to use two swords rather than one when you are fighting a crowd. there is no fast way of wielding the long sword. you can win with a long weapon. Just as one man can beat ten. the Water Book. artistic accomplishments and dancing. The long sword can be used effectively in all situations. These things cannot be explained in detail. But we do not call masters of the Way of the long sword "longswordsmen". such as Confucianism. nor do we speak of "companion swordsmen".

and riding horses. and swords and companion swords should cut strongly. you will think narrowly and forget the true Way. They cannot be used for taking a prisoner. It is bad for commanders and troopers to have likes and dislikes. in his harmony and discord. Timing is important in dancing and pipe or string music. Horses should walk strongly. In all skills and abilities there is timing. the spear gives a little extra strength. For this reason there are nowadays few traditional schools of archery. but use weapons which you can handle properly. whereas gunshot cannot be seen. There is timing in the whole life of the warrior. These are things you must learn thoroughly. There is also timing in the Void. bows and guns must be sturdy. Just as a horse must have endurance and no defects. Anyway. in his thriving and declining. the gun has no equal among weapons. One of the virtues of the bow is that you can see the arrows in flight and correct your aim accordingly. There is little use nowadays for this kind of skill. The bow is tactically strong at the commencement of battle. Spears and halberds must stand up to heavy use. It is the supreme weapon on the field before the ranks clash. or when the enemy is more than forty yards away. Weapons should be hardy rather than decorative. In the hands of one of two men of equal ability.The halberd is inferior to the spear on the battlefield. Timing and rhythm are also involved in the military arts. Timing in strategy cannot be mastered without a great deal of practice. so it is with weapons. shooting bows and guns. Timing in Strategy There is timing in everything. With the spear you can take the initiative. Spear and halberd both have their uses. Thus you will have difficulty in actual encounters. From inside fortifications. but neither is very beneficial in confined spaces. especially battles on a moor. but once swords are crossed the gun becomes useless. for they are in rhythm only if timing is good. as it is possible to shoot quickly from among the spearmen. You should not have a favourite weapon. the halberd is defensive. Similarly. To become over-familiar with one weapon is as much a fault as not knowing it sufficiently well. However. it is unsatisfactory in sieges. there is timing in the Way 10 . They are essentially weapons for the field. You must appreciate the importance of this. You should not copy others. if you learn "indoor" techniques.

and train in the Way of Strategy. This is the way for men who want to learn my strategy: 1. If you practice day and night in the above Ichi school strategy. and thus using a timing which the enemy does not expect. Thus is large scale strategy and the strategy of hand to hand combat propagated in the world. You will come to be able to actually beat men in fights. The Way is in training. 3. 5. and with sufficient training you will be able to beat ten men with your spirit. in the rise and fall of capital. and Void. It is especially important to know the background timing. All things entail rising and falling timing. will it not mean that you are invincible? 11 . conquer men with your body. and from among the large and small things and the fast and slow timings find the relevant timing. If you learn and attain this strategy you will never lose even to twenty or thirty enemies. It is important to start by setting these broad principles in your heart. In strategy there are various timing considerations. This is the main thing in strategy. 8. Do nothing which is of no use. Distinguish between gain and loss in worldly matters. 6. You win battles with the timing in the Void born of the timing of cunning by knowing the enemies' timing. Perceive those things which cannot be seen. You must be able to discern this. otherwise your strategy will become uncertain. This is recorded for the first time in the five books of Ground. Develop intuitive judgement and understanding for everything. Water. Become acquainted with every art. 4. first seeing the distance timing and the background timing. your spirit will naturally broaden. When you have reached this point. Also by training you will be able to freely control your own body. Know the Ways of all professions.of the merchant. All the five books are chiefly concerned with timing. Do not think dishonestly. You must train sufficiently to appreciate this. 9. and to be able to win with your eye. Tradition (Wind). Pay attention even to trifles. Fire. More than anything to start with you must set your heart on strategy and earnestly stick to the Way. If you do not look at things on a large scale it will be difficult for you to master strategy. 7. 2. From the outset you must know the applicable timing and the inapplicable timing.

in large scale strategy the superior man will manage many subordinates dextrously. thus preserving the ruler's discipline.Moreover. it is the Way of strategy. govern the country and foster the people. bear himself correctly. If there is a Way involving the spirit of not being defeated. to help oneself and gain honour. 12 .

but it can be grasped intuitively. but you must think broadly so that you attain an understanding for ten-thousand-a-side battles. Polish your 13 .Do not just read. Strategy is different from other things in that if you mistake the Way even a little you will become bewildered and fall into bad ways. your spirit settled yet unbiased. but so that you realize the principle from within your own heart study hard to absorb these things into your body. Whatever your size. Even when your spirit is calm do not let your body relax. Meet the situation without tenseness yet not recklessly. do not be misled by the reactions of your own body. Study this book. Language does not extend to explaining the Way in detail. and this Water Book explains methods of victory as the long-sword form of the Ichi school. An elevated spirit is weak and a low spirit is weak. The principles of strategy are written down here in terms of single combat. look at things from a high point of view. Be neither insufficiently spirited nor over spirited. memorise or imitate. With your spirit open and unconstricted. Small people must be completely familiar with the spirit of large people. and large people must be familiar with the spirit of small people. and when your body is relaxed do not let your spirit slacken.Chapter 2 THE WATER BOOK The spirit of the Ni Ten Ichi school of strategy is based on water. If you interpret the meaning loosely you will mistake the Way. You must cultivate your wisdom and spirit. Spiritual Bearing in Strategy In strategy your spiritual bearing must not be any different from normal. Do not let your spirit be influenced by your body. read a word then ponder on it. If you merely read this book you will not reach the Way of Strategy. Both in fighting and in everyday life you should be determined though calm. Absorb the things written in this book. or your body be influenced by your spirit. Do not let the enemy see your spirit.

distinguish between good and evil. Brace your abdomen so that you do not bend at the hips. so that your belt is not slack . Your forehead and the space between your eyes should not be wrinkled. it is necessary to maintain the combat stance in everyday life and to make your everyday stance your combat stance. and in the same way from the shoulders down through your entire body. even when you are hard-pressed. Hold the line of the rear of the neck straight: instill vigour into your hairline. nor twisted. The gaze is the same for single combat and for large-scale strategy. The wisdom of strategy is different from other things. Perception is strong and sight week. With your features composed.this is called "wedging in". On the battlefield. but slightly narrow them. It is necessary in strategy to be able to look to both sides without moving the eyeballs. you should ceaselessly research the principles of strategy so that you can develop a steady spirit. Learn what is written here. Lower both shoulders and. Do not roll your eyes nor allow them to blink. It is important in strategy to know the enemy's sword and not to be distracted by insignificant movements of his sword. Wedge your companion sword in your belt against your abdomen. put strength into your legs from the knees to the tips of your toes. The Gaze in Strategy The gaze should be large and broad. keep the line of your nose straight with a feeling of slightly flaring your nostrils.wisdom: learn public justice. When you cannot be deceived by men you will have realized the wisdom of strategy. You cannot master this ability quickly. This is the twofold gaze "Perception and Sight". In strategy it is important to see distant things as if they were close and to take a distanced view of close things. neither hanging down. without the buttocks jutting out. You must study this. Holding the Long Sword 14 . nor looking up. use this gaze in everyday life and do not vary it whatever happens. Stance in Strategy Adopt a stance with the head erect. In all forms of strategy. You must research this well. study the Ways of different arts one by one.

the Middle attitude is 15 . You should not move on one foot preferentially. Your attitude should be large or small according to the situation. The essence of the Way is this. you must be intent on cutting the enemy in the way you grip the sword. the one purpose of all of them is to cut the enemy. "floating-foot" and "fixed-steps". you must slightly change the feeling in your thumb and forefinger. Generally. or ward it off. or warding off a cut. Above all. It is bad to have play in your hands. Right Side. I dislike the three walking methods know as "jumping-foot". withdrawing. Pliability is a living hand. There is no such thing as a "man-cutting grip". Whether you move fast or slow. It means moving your feet left-right and right-left when cutting. I dislike fixedness in both long swords and hands. your feet must always move as in normal walking. You must bear this in mind. Yin-Yang foot means not moving only one foot. The Five Attitudes The five attitudes are: Upper. Left Side and Right Side attitudes are fluid. or force it down. As you cut an enemy you must not change your grip. So-called "Yin-Yang foot" is important in the Way.Grip the long sword with a rather floating feeling in your thumb and forefinger. If we look at strategy on a broad scale. Fixedness means a dead hand. To understand attitude you must thoroughly understand the middle attitude. Upper. The decision to use Left or Right depends on the place. Lower. These are the give. Left and Right attitudes should be used if there is an obstruction overhead or to one side. The grip for combat and for sword-testing is the same. There are none but these five attitudes. you must feel intent on cutting the enemy. tread firmly with your heels. Middle. with the middle finger neither tight nor slack. do not be conscious of making the attitude. Footwork With the tips of your toes somewhat floating. and Left Side. think only of cutting. and your hands must not "cower". When you take up a sword. Although attitude has these five divisions. and with the last two fingers tight. Whatever attitude you are in. When you dash the enemy's sword aside. Lower and Middle attitudes are decisive. with large or small steps. The middle attitude is the heart of attitudes.

The first approach is the Middle attitude. You must train repeatedly using a long sword in order to learn them. lift it straight upwards. In the third approach. keep your sword where it is and. Or. You cannot cut down a man with a long sword using this method. anticipating scooping up. You must appreciate this. In this method there are various changes in timing and spirit. 2. You will always win with the five long sword methods. 3. we can wield it easily. when you cut sideways. To wield the long sword well you must wield it calmly. you will be able to wield a sword well. like a folding fan or a short sword. adopt the Lower attitude. This is the Way of the longsword. when the enemy attacks. You must train repetitively. When he attacks. you will err by using "short sword chopping". If you try to wield the long sword quickly you will mistake the Way. and as the enemy renews his attack cut his arms from below. If you try to wield it quickly. from the Upper attitude cut the enemy just as he attacks. This is the first method. Wield the sword strongly.the seat of the commander. you will be able to control any attack the enemy makes. scooping up from below. deflect the point of his sword by hitting downwards. If you learn to use the five approaches of my strategy. You will be able to understand this by training in the Ichi school. If the enemy evades the cut. with the other four attitudes following the commander. Confront the enemy with the point of your sword against his face. If we know the path of the sword well. there are no attitudes other than the five attitudes of the long sword of Ni To. You must train constantly. keep your long sword where it is. always stretching the elbows broadly. When you have cut downwards with the longsword. The Five Approaches 1. When the enemy attacks. As you do so 16 . hit his hands from below. In the second approach with the long sword. I assure you. dash his sword to the right and "ride" it. The Way of the Long Sword Knowing the Way of the long sword means we can wield with two fingers the sword we usually carry. return the sword along a sideways path. It is possible to repeat the cut from here. cut him as he renews the attack. Return the sword in a reasonable way. The five approaches are this kind of thing. When you master my Way of the long sword.

This is the Way of the long sword. Whenever you parry. hit. with various timing considerations discerning the enemy's spirit. adopt the Left Side attitude. According to the situation. This means that from the lower attitudes you hit the enemy at the instant that he attacks. The "Attitude No-Attitude" Teaching "Attitude No-Attitude" means that there is no need for what are know as long sword attitudes.Nonexisting Attitude". cross your long sword from below at the side to the Upper attitude. 4. You must consider all this carefully. From the Upper attitude as your spirit lessens you can adopt the Middle attitude. If you can use this method. learn large-scale timing. You will encounter this method often. You will always win by using these five methods. However you hold the sword it must be in such a way that it is easy to cut the enemy well. Through this method you win by parrying the line of the enemy's attack. The primary thing when you take a sword in your hands is your intention to cut the enemy.he may try to hit your sword down. understand the enemy's long sword. the place. Then cut straight from above. If as you hit his hands he attempts to dash down your sword. 5. You must train holding a long sword. parry the path of his long sword and cut across from above your shoulder. Even so. In accordance with the enemy's attack. and from the Middle attitude you can raise the sword a little in your technique and adopt the Upper attitude. and become used to the five approaches from the outset. cut his upper arm(s) horizontally with a feeling of "crossing". you can freely wield a heavy long sword. If this is the case. From the lower attitude you can raise the sword and adopt the Middle attitudes as the occasion demands. You must research this. in accordance with the situation. As the enemy attacks hit his hands from below. In the fifth approach. You must become well acquainted with my "in harmony with the long sword" Way. both as a beginner and in later strategy. This method is essential for knowing the Way of the long sword well. The principle of this is called "Existing Attitude . attitudes exist as the five ways of holding the long sword. In this fourth approach. the Middle or the Lower attitude results. and your relation to the enemy. the sword is in the Right Side attitude. I cannot describe in detail how to use these five approaches. with the feeling of hitting his hands. whatever the means. if you turn your sword from either the Left Side or Right Side attitude towards the centre. 17 .

This is the "Abdomen Timing of Two". but you will soon understand with a little instruction. without moving your body or settling your spirit. as he relaxes. The Flowing Water Cut The "Flowing Water Cut" is used when you are struggling blade to blade with the enemy. when the enemy attacks and you also decide to attack. is this "In One Timing". following your body like stagnant water. springing. you will not be able actually to cut him. When he breaks and quickly withdraws trying to spring with his long sword. You must train to achieve this timing. you must be thinking of carrying your movement through to cutting him. This is the "No Design. Study this well. hit with your body. and hit from the Void with your hands. No Conception" cut. 18 . striking or touching the enemy. It is essential to attain this. Then. It is very difficult to attain this by merely reading this book. expand your body and spirit and cut him as slowly as possible with your long sword. You must train hard to understand it. to hit him as quickly and directly as possible. you must cut the enemy in the same movement. while you see that he is still undecided. Fixed formation is bad. when you have closed with the enemy. to be able to hit in the timing of an instant. If you think only of hitting. It is often used. No Conception In this method. No Design. This is the most important method of hitting. Attitude in strategy on a larger scale is called "Battle Array". The timing of hitting before the enemy decides to withdraw. You can cut with certainty if you learn this. More than anything. accelerating strongly. strike or touch the enemy's cutting sword. To Hit the Enemy "In One Timing" "In One Timing" means. The "Abdomen Timing of Two" When you attack and the enemy quickly retreats. break or hit. and hit with your spirit. You must thoroughly research this.spring. You must discern the enemy's grade. as you see him tense you must feint a cut. follow up and hit him. Such attitudes are all for winning battles.

hitting and parrying. When you cut. in one action cut his head. and even if the enemy dies instantly. The Fire and Stones Cut The Fires and Stones Cut means that when the enemy's long sword and your long sword clash together you cut as strongly as possible without raising the sword even a little. This means cutting quickly with the hands. If you train well enough you will be able to strike strongly. you can cut first with the long sword. If you practice this cut it becomes easy to make the enemy drop his sword. is decisive. according to the enemy's cutting method. You must train repetitively. However.Continuous Cut When you attack and the enemy also attacks. you can dash against him with your body first. The Body in Place of the Long Sword Also "the long sword in place of the body".all three cutting strongly. Cut and Slash To cut and to slash are two different things. you strongly hit the enemy's long sword with the Fire and Stones Cut. it is the "Continuous Cut". Slashing is nothing more than touching the enemy. but generally you hit first with the body and then cut with the long sword. The Red Leaves Cut The Red Leaves Cut [allusion to falling. Usually we move the body and the sword at the same time to cut the enemy. With detailed practice you should be able to understand it. No Conception" Cut. You must practice this cut. Cutting. he will necessarily drop the sword. perhaps in the spirit of the "No Design. it is often used. If you then beat down the point of his sword with a sticky feeling. and your swords spring together. When you cut several places with one sweep of the long sword. body and legs . with a resolute spirit. If his body is immoveable. The spirit should be getting control of his sword. it is slashing. You must research this well and practice hitting. hands and legs. When the enemy is in a long sword attitude in front of you and intent on cutting. dying leaves] means knocking down the enemy's long sword. Even if you slash strongly. and afterwards cut with the sword. your spirit is resolved. whatever form of cutting it is. 19 .

Turn your face a little 20 . The spirit is to strike him with your body. The spirit is to get in quickly. stick firmly with your head. and you are the higher.You must appreciate this. Glue and Lacquer Emulsion Body The spirit of "Glue and Lacquer Emulsion Body" is to stick to the enemy and not separate from him. they become indistinguishable. When you come to within arm's reach it becomes easy to move your body in. you must then cut strongly. You must research this well. thrust in strongly. but their body lags behind. When you realize this. you should go in with a sticky feeling and fix your long sword against the enemy's as you receive his cut. and stretch your neck face to face with him. You must consider this carefully. body and legs. If you first slash the enemy's hands or legs. It is best to approach as calmly as possible when hitting the enemy's long sword with stickiness. The difference between "Stickiness" and "Entanglement" is that stickiness is firm and entanglement is weak. Learn this well. If you are intent upon not stretching out your arms you are effectively far away. To Apply Stickiness When the enemy attacks and you also attack with the long sword. Slashing is in spirit the same as touching. to strive with him for superior height without cringing. the spirit is to go in with your whole body. without in the least extending your arms. The spirit of stickiness is not hitting very strongly. You must learn this. Stretch your legs. stretch your hips. When you think you have won. when you close with the enemy. People tend to advance their head and legs quickly. The Body Strike The Body Strike means to approach the enemy through a gap in his guard. You should stick firmly so that there is not the slightest gap between the enemy's body and your body. When you approach the enemy. You must appreciate this. before the enemy cuts. Chinese Monkey's Body The Chinese Monkey's Body is the spirit of not stretching out your arms. but hitting so that the long swords do not separate easily. To Strive for Height By "to strive for height" is meant.

there are various opportunities for winning. that your spirit is intent of stabbing at his face.aside and strike the enemy's breast with your left shoulder thrust out. you can win quickly. To Stab at the Heart To stab at the heart means. you will be able to knock him ten or twenty feet away. For this it is necessary to train well. by dashing the enemy's long sword to your right. You must concentrate on this. and with the spirit of deflecting his long sword. when you are in confrontation with the enemy. when he makes an attack. Or. You must bear in mind that you can always clench your left hand and thrust at the enemy's face with your fist. Approach with the spirit of bouncing the enemy away. 21 . and whenever it is difficult to cut. It is possible to strike the enemy until he is dead. or to the sides. When fighting and the enemy's body becomes as if rideable. to thrust at the enemy. so you ought not to forget to stab at the face. If you are intent on stabbing at his face. striking as strongly as possible in time with yout breathing. as if thrusting at his eyes. his face and body will become rideable. To Stab at the Face To stab at the face means. You must stab the enemy's breast without letting the point of your long sword waver. when fighting and there are obstructions above. Or. to close with him quickly. The spirit of this principle is often useful when we become tired or for some reason our long sword will not cut. If you achieve this method of closing with the enemy. when you have a short "long sword". following the line of the blades with the point of your long sword. Three Ways to Parry His Attack There are three methods to parry a cut: First. thrusting at his face with your left hand. without worrying about parrying the enemy's long sword. These are the three methods of parrying. showing the enemy the ridge of the blade square-on. You must understand the application of this method. You must pursue the value of this technique through training. to parry by thrusting the enemy's long sword towards his right eye with the feeling of snipping his neck. When the enemy becomes as if rideable. Train well.

cut the enemies down as they advance. teedum rhythm. The Smacking Parry By "smacking parry" is meant that when you clash swords with the enemy. but smacking the enemy's long sword in accordance with his attacking cut. 22 . "Tut!". or smacking strongly. The Advantage when Coming to Blows You can know how to win through strategy with the long sword. and when they are seen to be piled up. when the enemy tries to counter-cut as you attack. Draw both sword and companion sword and assume a widestretched left and right attitude. If you understand the timing of smacking. Thrust up. trying to hold him down. but it cannot be clearly explained in writing. Always quickly re-assume your attitudes to both sides. and cut "TUT!" This timing is encountered time and time again in exchange of blows. Waiting is bad. There are Many Enemies "There are many enemies" applies when you are fighting one against many. The way to scold Tut-TUT is to time the cut simultaneously with raising your long sword as if to thrust the enemy. primarily intent on quickly cutting him. You must research sufficiently to realize this. as if tying a line of fishes. crushing them in the direction from which they attack. The spirit is to chase the enemies around from side to side. scolding the enemy. The spirit of the smacking parry is not parrying. With very quick timing you cut. smacking his sword and cutting him. even though they come from all four directions. your swordpoint will not be knocked back even a little. you meet his attacking cut on your long sword with a tee-dum. You must learn this through repetitive practice. and cut left and right alternately with your swords. you counter-cut again from below as if thrusting at him. Whatever you do. carefully examining the attacking order. however hard your long swords clash together. you must drive the enemy together.To Scold "Tut-TUT!" "Scold" means that. Observe their attacking order. cut them down strongly without giving them room to move. You must practice diligently in order to understand how to win. and go to meet first those who attack first. Sweep your eyes around broadly.

absorb the virtue of all this. taking one item at a time. If you attain this Way of victory. It is difficult to attain this if you do not learn strategy well. train according to this book. not allowing your heart to be swayed along a side-track. and absorb the Way of the long sword naturally in your body. 23 . handle the long sword naturally.Oral tradition: "The true Way of Strategy is revealed in the long sword. Deliberately. If you train well in this Way. Next. Today is victory over yourself of yesterday. You must train diligently. and through fighting with enemies you will gradually come to know the principle of the Way. in order to beat more skillful men. Study strategy over the years and achieve the spirit of the warrior. Study the contents of this book. Direct Communication The spirit of "Direct Communication" is how the true Way of the Ni To Ichi school is received and handed down. first learn the five approaches and the five attitudes." One Cut You can win with certainty with the spirit of "one cut". you will then know values in strategy. You must understand spirit and timing. then you will be able to beat several tens of men. tomorrow is your victory over lesser men. Whether beating one man or two. and move body and legs in harmony with your spirit. which you can attain in battles and duels. To learn how to win with the long sword in strategy. strategy will come from your heart and you will be able to win at will. Step by step walk the thousand-mile road. What remains is sword-fighting ability. Oral tradition: "Teach your body strategy. if it is not based on what you have learned it is not the true Way. from time to time raising your hand in combat." Recorded in the above book is an outline of Ichi school sword-fighting. Maintain this spirit whenever you cross swords with and enemy. Even if you kill an enemy. with a patient spirit.

become free from self. and realize extraordinary ability. 24 . his strength and resources. so a thousand men can beat ten thousand".Chapter 3 THE FIRE BOOK In this the Fire Book of the Ni To Ichi school of strategy I describe fighting as fire. and come to appreciate how to apply strategy to beat ten thousand enemies. learning the Way of the sword. Depending on the Place Examine your environment. they only know the benefit of three of the five inches of the wrist. My Way of Strategy is the sure method to win when fighting for your life one man against five or ten. Thus can he polish his skill. But you can become a master of strategy by training alone with a sword. By using only their fingertips. In my strategy. fighting for survival. as with the folding fan. Of course you cannot assemble a thousand or ten thousand men for everyday training. so that you can understand the enemy's strategy. the training for killing enemies is by way of many contests. They let a contest be decided. Any man who wants to master the essence of my strategy must research diligently. He will come to possess miraculous power. In the first place. There is nothing wrong with the principle "one man can beat ten. learning such trifles as hand and leg movements with the bamboo practice sword. training morning and evening. They specialise in the small matter of dexterity. discovering the meaning of life and death. This is the practical result of strategy. people think narrowly about the benefit of strategy. merely by the span of their forearms. You cannot profit from small techniques particularly when full armour is worn. You must research this. judging the strength of attacks and understanding the Way of the "edge and ridge" of the sword.

you must stand with the entrance behind you or to your right. lintels. and so on. You must look down on the enemy. If the situation does not allow this. The Three Methods to Forestall the Enemy The first is to forestall him by attacking. doors. the Kamiza in a house is thought of as a high place. 25 . you must try to keep the sun on your right side. This is called Ken No Sen (to set him up). and that there is free space on your left. forestalling him with the reserve. This is called Tai Tai No Sen (to accompany him and forestall him). For example. There are several things involved in taking the lead.Stand in the sun. obstacles at the side.Ken No Sen When you decide to attack. keep calm and dash in quickly. keep the fire behind you and the entrance to your right. Chase him towards awkward places. see through the enemy's spirit so that you grasp his strategy and defeat him. Make sure that your rear is unobstructed. your right side being occupied with your side attitude. Always chase the enemy into bad footholds. In buildings. take up an attitude with the sun behind you. The other method is when you and the enemy attack together. and so on. The First . chase the enemy into the thresholds. Because you can win quickly by taking the lead. that is. It is impossible to write about this in detail. and take up your attitude on slightly higher places. and otherwise take up your attitude as above. You must make the best of the situation. Another method is to forestall him as he attacks. In houses. pillars. always endeavour to chase the enemy around to your left side. At night. There are no methods of taking the lead other than these three. Or you can advance seemingly strongly but with a reserved spirit. but conscientiously chase him around and pin him down. it is one of the most important things in strategy. forestalling the enemy. This is called Tai No Sen (to wait for the initiative). again not letting him see his situation. When the enemy gets into an inconvenient position. You must research and train diligently in this. using the virtues of the place to establish predominant positions from which to fight. When the fight comes. verandas. if the enemy can be seen. do not let him look around. and try to keep him with his back to awkward places.

Tai Tai No Sen When the enemy makes a quick attack. In these three ways of forestalling. and strongly defeat him. attack still more strongly. and throw off his hold when he tries to grapple. In strategy. with your body rather floating. In contests of strategy it is bad to be led about by the enemy. In strategy. you must push down his thrust. join in with his movements as he draws near. attack with a feeling of constantly crushing the enemy. This does not mean that you always attack first. To Hold Down a Pillow "To Hold Down a Pillow" means not allowing the enemy's head to rise. Or. as the enemy attacks. so you must train well to attain this. suddenly move away indicating that you intend to jump aside. but he cannot forestall you if you do not allow him to come out. Or. You must research what is written here. These things cannot be clearly explained in words. You must always be able to lead the enemy about.Tai No Sen When the enemy attacks. you must observe his movements and. remain undisturbed but feign weakness. and when you reach the enemy move with your feet a little quicker than normal. aim for his weak point as he draws near. The Second . The Third . The spirit is too 26 . This is the meaning of "to hold down a pillow". unsettling him and overwhelming him sharply. you must judge the situation.Alternatively. you have effectively won when you forestall the enemy. These are all Ken No Sen. whatever the enemy tries to bring about in the fight you will see in advance and suppress it. Obviously the enemy will also be thinking of doing this. then dash in attacking strongly as soon as you see the enemy relax. you must stop the enemy as he attempts to cut. taking advantage of the resulting disorder in his timing to win. As the enemy reaches you. This is one way. The spirit is to win in the depths of the enemy. Or. advance with as strong a spirit as possible. you must attack strongly and calmly. but if the enemy attacks first you can lead him around. This is Tai Tai No Sen. if the enemy attacks calmly. When you have grasped this principle. from first to last. with your spirit calm. Move quickly and cut him strongly. This is the Tai No Sen principle.

doing this alone is defensive. Is it flourishing or waning? By observing the spirit of the enemy's men and getting the best position. fighting from a position of advantage. and check his cut at "cu… ". when he jumps check his jump at the syllable "ju… ". It means setting sail even though your friends stay in harbour. First. When you can do this you will be a master of strategy. If you succeed in crossing at the best place. This is how to win large-scale strategy. When all the conditions are meet. knowing the route. You must research this well. you can work out the enemy's disposition and move your men accordingly. 27 . as a good captain crosses a sea route. or crossing over a hundred miles of broad sea at a crossing place. When in a duel. then set sail. and there is perhaps a favourable wind. knowing your own strong points. foiling his plans and thence command him directly. If you attain this spirit. perceived his quality and his strong and weak points. Discern the enemy's capability and. knowing the soundness of your ship and the favour of the day. The important thing in strategy is to suppress the enemy's useful actions but allow his useless actions. To Know the Times "To know the times" means to know the enemy's disposition in battle. for example. Crossing at a Ford "Crossing at a ford" means. The spirit of crossing at a ford is necessary in both large. and to put yourself in an advantageous position. you must forestall the enemy and attack when you have first recognised his school of strategy. suppressing the enemy's techniques. "cross the ford" at the advantageous place.and small-scale strategy. To cross at a ford means to attack the enemy's weak point. you must act according to the Way. You can win through this principle of strategy. In strategy also it is important to "cross at a ford".check his attack at the syllable "at… ". Attack in an unsuspecting manner. you may take your ease. you must row across the remaining distance without sail. knowing his metre and modulation and the appropriate timing. crossing the sea at a strait. If the wind changes within a few miles of your destination. You must train well and research "holding down a pillow". However. or a tailwind. it applies to everyday life. I believe this "crossing at a ford" occurs often in man's lifetime. You must always think of crossing at a ford.

You must achieve the spirit of not allowing the enemy to attack a second time. To Tread Down the Sword "To tread down the sword" is a principle often used in strategy. We must defeat him at the start of his attack. seeing right into things. In single combat. The spirit is to attack quickly while the enemy is still shooting with bows or guns. when the enemy first discharges bows and guns and then attacks it is difficult for us to attack if we are busy loading powder into our guns or notching our arrows. You must study this deeply. they may recover. but to cling after the attack. You must understand how to utterly cut down the enemy. attacking so that you do not let him recover. Fix your eye on the enemy's collapse. bodies. If you let this opportunity pass. The chasing attack is with a strong spirit. of course. if your ability is high. This is the spirit of forestalling in every sense. To Become the Enemy "To become the enemy" means to think yourself in the enemy's position. In the world people tend to think of a robber trapped in a house as 28 . with a "tee-dum tee-dum" feeling. tread and cut with the long sword. and chase him. If you are thoroughly conversant with strategy. "Treading" does not simply mean treading with the feet. and. you will recognise the enemy's intentions and thus have many opportunities to win. you must pursue him without letting the chance go. we cannot get a decisive victory by cutting. Tread with the body.Knowing the times means. You must utterly cut the enemy down so that he does not recover his position. You must do this. If you fail to take advantage of your enemies' collapse. in the wake of the enemy's attacking long sword. To Know "Collapse" Everything can collapse. he may recover and not be so negligent thereafter. In single combat. when the enemy starts to collapse. tread with the spirit. in the spirit of treading him down with the feet. and enemies collapse when their rhythm becomes deranged. The spirit is to win by "treading down" as we receive the enemy's attack. the enemy sometimes loses timing and collapses. so that he cannot rise again to the attack. In large-scale strategy. You must sufficiently study this. in large scale strategy. you should not aspire just to strike him. First. Houses. Once at the enemy.

In large-scale strategy. you can win with certainty. who knows the principles of strategy". if we think of "becoming the enemy". to discover his resources. and the enemy will show his long sword. when you cannot see the enemy's position. "Here is a a master of the Way. Abandon this spirit and win through an alternative resource. He who is shut inside is a pheasant. indicate that you are about to attack strongly. In large-scale strategy. then you will surely lose. do not give up . when there is a "four hands" spirit. If you are negligent you will miss the timing. Benefiting from what you are shown. people are always under the impression that the enemy is strong. Immediately throw away this spirit and win with a technique the enemy does not expect. You must consider this deeply. He who enters to arrest is a hawk. To Release Four Hands "To release four hands" is used when you and the enemy are contending with the same spirit. and if you understand the principles of strategy. However. But if you have good soldiers. It is easy then to defeat him with a different method once you see his resources. and the issue cannot be decided.a fortified enemy. and if you know how to beat the enemy. You must appreciate this. there is nothing to worry about. Research this well. if the enemy takes up a rear or side attitude of the long sword so that you cannot see his intention. In single combat. If you think. To Move the Shade "To move the shade" is used when you cannot see the enemy's spirit. In single combat also. and so tend to become cautious. we feel that the whole world is against us and that there is no escape. make a feint attack. 29 . we must defeat the enemy by changing our mind and applying a suitable technique according to his condition. when we think we have fallen into the "four hands" situation.it is man's existence. In single combat also you must put yourself in the enemy's position. You must be able to judge this. thinking he sees your spirit. In large-scale strategy. To Hold Down a Shadow "Holding down a shadow" is use when you can see the enemy's attacking spirit.

hold down the enemy's strong intention with a suitable timing. and the enemy will be taken by this and will become relaxed. and another is surprise. when the enemy embarks on an attack. in single combat. Then. or weak spirit. You must research this. but by shouting. or by threatening them from the flank without warning. and defeat him by forestalling him with this timing. You must study this well. In single combat. careless. You can also infect the enemy with a bored. in single combat. then suddenly attack strongly. altering your spirit. making a small force seem large. attack strongly and quickly. he will change his mind. To Frighten Fright often occurs. In large-scale strategy you can frighten the enemy not just by what you present to their eyes. Without allowing him space for breath to recover form the fluctuation of spirit.In large-scale strategy. These 30 . if you make a show of strongly suppressing his technique. and yawning can be passed on. One cause is danger. you can win by relaxing your body and spirit and then. start by making a show of being slow. What is know as "getting someone drunk" is similar to this. when the enemy is agitated and shows an inclination to rush. do not mind in the least. you can bring about the enemy's defeat by attacking strongly with a Void spirit. To Cause Loss of Balance Many things can cause a loss of balance. caused by the unexpected. and while his spirit is undecided follow up your advantage and. forestalling him. catching on to the moment the enemy relaxes. To Pass On Many things are said to be passed on. Get the feel of this. Or. another is hardship. you must grasp the opportunity to win. Time can be passed on also. defeat him. Make a show of complete calmness. You must study this well. Attack without warning where the enemy is not expecting it. Sleepiness can be passed on. In large-scale strategy it is important to cause loss of balance. Or. In large-scale strategy. having the lead. defeat him by forestalling him with a Void spirit. When you see that this spirit has been passed on.

You can win by applying a suitable technique while you are mutually entangled. and when he is confused you can easily win. and thus weaken him. long sword. The Three Shouts 31 . or make the enemy think ou are going to close with him. were you to draw apart. or voice. Research this well. Victory is certain when the enemy is caught up in a rhythm which confuses his spirit. so you must research deeply. Feint a thrust or cut. In battles involving large numbers as well as in fights with small numbers. This is the essence of fighting. you can often win decisively with the advantage of knowing how to "soak" into the enemy. it is easy to win once the enemy collapses. Observing the enemy's spirit. To Soak In When you have come to grips and are striving together with the enemy.things all frighten. In large-scale strategy. It is important to know how to do this. This happens when you injure the "corners" of his body. to defeat him. we can confuse the enemy by attacking with varied techniques when the chance arises. whereas. the spirit of the whole body will be overthrown. and you realize that you cannot advance. In single combat. you would lose the chance to win. To defeat the enemy you must follow up the attack when the corners have fallen. To Injure the Corners It is difficult to move strong things by pushing directly. so you should "injure the corners". In single combat. and you must research it deeply. it is beneficial to strike at the corners of the enemy's force. In large-scale strategy we can use our troops to confuse the enemy on the field. you must use the advantage of taking the enemy unawares by frightening him with your body. we can make him think. "Here? There? Like that? Like this? Slow? Fast?". In single combat. also. You should research this well. If the corners are overthrown. You can win by making best use of the enemy's frightened rhythm. To Throw into Confusion This means making the enemy lose resolve. you "soak in" and become one with the enemy.

We shout against fires and so on. if the enemy is less skilful than ourself. shouting out as we attack. the voice is low-pitched. Shout according to the situation. then grasp the timing and attack further strong points to right and left. You must learn the spirit of crushing as if with a hand-grip. we make as if to cut and shout "Ei!" at the same time to disturb the enemy. You must understand this. In single combat. What is meant by "mingling" is the spirit of advancing and becoming engaged with the enemy. The spirit of this is like a winding mountain path. We do not shout simultaneously with flourishing the long sword. we must crush him straightaway. if his rhythm is disorganised.The three shouts are divided thus: before. We shout after we have cut down the enemy . 32 . during and after. then in the wake of our shout we cut with the long sword. In single combat. as if on a winding mountain path. After the contest. at the start of battle we shout as loudly as possible. The voice shows energy. This is an important fighting method for one man against many. Research this deeply. In large-scale strategy. To Crush This means to crush the enemy regarding him as being weak. with no concern for his presence and without allowing him space for breath. During the fight. These are the three shouts. The primary thing is not to let him recover his position even a little. We shout during the fight to get into rhythm. When you know the enemies' level attack strongly with no trace of retreating spirit. The voice is a thing of life. when you see that they are beaten back. he may recover. we shout in the wake of our victory. This is called "sen go no koe" (before and after voice). when the armies are in confrontation.this is to announce victory. or if he has fallen into evasive or retreating attitudes. or drive them back. or if he has many men but his spirit is weak and disordered. against the wind and the waves. It is essential to crush him all at once. crushing him utterly. attack the enemy's strong points and. we knock the hat over his eyes. You must research this deeply. when we see that the enemy has few men. and not withdrawing even one step. Strike down the enemies in one quarter. If we crush lightly. weighing up the enemies' disposition. quickly separate and attack yet another strong point on the periphery of his force. In large-scale strategy. To Mingle In battles.

If you once make an attack and fail. demoralising him by quickly changing our spirit. Research this diligently. To renew. if his spirit is not extinguished. when we are deadlocked with the enemy. means that without changing our circumstance we change our spirit and win through a different technique. attack like the sea. It is necessary to consider how "to renew" also applies in large-scale strategy. he may be beaten superficially yet undefeated in spirit deep inside. even when it can be seen that we can win on the surface with the benefit of the Way. Once we have crushed the enemy in the depths. We must abandon our efforts. You must train in penetrating the depths for large-scale strategy and also single combat. penetrating with the body. You must research this deeply. There may be no help but to do something twice. and penetrating with the spirit. If the enemy thinks of the mountains. Ox's Neck 33 . think of the situation in a fresh spirit then win in the new rhythm.The Mountain-Sea Change The "mountain-sea" spirit means that it is bad to repeat the same thing several times when fighting the enemy. To Renew "To renew" applies when we are fighting with the enemy. To Penetrate the Depths When we are fighting with the enemy. If you attempt a technique which you have previously tried unsuccessfully and fail yet again. then you must change your attacking method. This cannot be understood in a generalisation. This often occurs. and an entangled spirit arises where there is no possible resolution. there is no need to remain spirited. With this principle of "penetrating the depths" we can destroy the enemy's spirit in its depths. but do not try it a third time. Rat's Head. there is little chance of success if you use the same approach again. But otherwise we must remain spirited. If the enemy remains spirited it is difficult to crush him. attack like the mountains. Penetrating the depths means penetrating with the long sword. and if he thinks of the sea.

Oral tradition. You must train well. If we watch men of other schools discussing theory."Rat's head and ox's neck" means that. This is the first time I have written about my technique. To Let Go the Hilt There are various kinds of spirit involved in letting go the hilt. written down as it came to me. we must suddenly change into a large spirit. This is one of the essences of strategy. There is the spirit of winning without a sword. interchanging large with small. 34 . and attaining the many spiritual attitudes of sword fencing. You become the general and the enemy becomes your troops. and concentrating on techniques with the hands. even though they seem skilful to watch. This is the body of a rock. This book is a spiritual guide for the man who wishes to learn the Way. You will not be moved. It is difficult to express it clearly. Using the wisdom of strategy. My heart has been inclined to the Way of Strategy from my youth onwards. When you think in this way you can move him at will and be able to chase him around. There is also the spirit of holding the long sword but not winning. You must master this. The Body of a Rock When you have mastered the Way of Strategy you can suddenly make your body like a rock. think of the enemy as your own troops. The Commander Knows the Troops "The commander knows the troops" applies everywhere in fights in my Way of strategy. they have not the slightest true spirit. You must not depart from this spirit in large-scale strategy nor in single combat. tempering my body. The various methods cannot be expressed in writing. we must always think of the Way of Strategy as being both a rat's head and an ox's neck. Whenever we have become preoccupied with small detail. and the order of things is a bit confused. I have devoted myself to training my hand. when we are fighting with the enemy and both he and we have become occupied with small points in an entangled spirit. What is recorded above is what has been constantly on my mind about Ichi school sword fencing. It is necessary that the warrior think in this spirit in everyday life. and ten thousand things cannot touch you.

men who study in this way think they are training the body and spirit. you need never doubt that you will win. but it is an obstacle to the true Way. Thus the true Way of Strategy is becoming decadent and dying out. If you attain and adhere to the wisdom of my strategy. and nothing other than this. and its bad influence remains for ever. The true Way of sword fencing is the craft of defeating the enemy in a fight.Of course. 35 .

Some schools teach dexterity in large numbers of sword techniques. teaching attitudes of the sword as the "surface" and the Way as the "interior".Chapter 4 THE WIND BOOK In strategy you must know the Ways of other schools. Some of the world's strategists are concerned only with sword-fencing. Looking at other schools we find some that specialise in techniques of strength using extra-long swords. but these are the idle words of one who does not know strategy. It shows the 36 . I have recorded the unsatisfactory point of other schools one by one in this book. My Ichi school is different. relying on the virtue of its length. they think to defeat the enemy from a distance. so I have written about various other traditions of strategys in this the Wind Book. and limit their training to flourishing the long sword and carriage of the body. From the point of view of my strategy these must been seen as weak schools. Other Schools Using Extra-Long Swords Some other schools have a liking for extra-long swords. That none of these are the true Way I show clearly in the interior of this book . growing flowers and decoratively colouring articles in order to sell them. But is dexterity alone sufficient to win? This is not the essence of the Way. "One inch gives the hand advantage". You must study these matters deeply to appreciate the benefit of my Ni To Ichi school. In this world it is said. Their preference is for the extra-long sword and. Some schools study the Way of the short sword.all the vices and virtues and rights and wrongs. This is because they do not appreciate the principle of cutting the enemy by any means. Other schools make accomplishments their means of livelihood. Without knowledge of the Ways of other schools. This is definitely not the Way of Strategy. known as kodachi. it is difficult to understand the essence of my Ichi school.

If you are concerned with the strength of your sword. Thus the saying. if you have a strong army and are relying on strength to win.". If we consider large-scale strategy. your own sword will be carried along as a result. So do not unconditionally dislike extra-long swords. 37 . narrow spirit.inferior strategy of a weak spirit that men should be dependent on the length of their sword. and small forces as short swords. and will not be able to cut at all. but if we compare this to real life it is unreasonable. and have no long sword? It is difficult for these people to cut the enemy when at close quarters because of the length of the long sword. some men have not the strength of others. Do not try to cut strongly and. has no meaning. If you just wield the long sword in a strong spirit your cutting will be coarse. Surely we need not necessarily be defeated if we are using a short sword. and they are at a disadvantage compared to the man armed with a short companion sword. of course. You must study this well. but the enemy also has a strong army. I expect there is a case for the school in question liking extra-long swords as part of its doctrine. do not think of cutting weakly. and if you use the sword coarsely you will have difficulty in winning. when you hit the enemy's sword you will inevitably hit too hard. fighting from a distance without the benefit of strategy. If you do this. the battle will be fierce. In my doctrine. The blade path is large so the long sword is an encumbrance. just think of cutting and killing him. In large-scale strategy. The Strong Long Sword Spirit in Other Schools You should not speak of strong and weak long swords. we can think of large forces in terms of long swords. Cannot few me give battle against many? There are many instances of few men overcoming many. Your strategy is of no account if when called on to fight in a confined space your heart is inclined to the long sword. Whenever you cross swords with an enemy you must not think of cutting him either strongly or weakly. I dislike preconceived. It is also bad to try to cut strongly when testing the sword. you will try to cut unreasonably strongly. "The strongest hand wins". Be intent solely upon killing the enemy. What I dislike is the inclination towards the long sword. or if you are in a house armed only with your companion sword. If you rely on strength. This is the same for both sides. Besides. From olden times it has been said: "Great and small go together. You should only be concerned with killing the enemy.

The same principle applies to large-scale strategy. causing him to jump aside. Men of superior strength in the world can wield even a long sword lightly. The sure Way to win thus is to chase the enemy around in confusing manner. The reason is that this has been a precedent since ancient times. Furthermore. but they have to parry cuts continuously. Use of the Shorter Long Sword in Other Schools Using a shorter long sword is not the true Way to win. This inclination is bad. Other Schools with many Methods of using the Long Sword Placing a great deal of importance on the attitudes of the long sword is a mistaken way of thinking. That is. This is inconsistent with the true Way of Strategy. paying no attention to trifles. They become set in this habit. What is known in the world as "attitude" applies when there is no enemy. so can easily be paraded around by the enemy. you cannot use the method of jumping inside his defence with a short sword if there are many enemies. In ancient times. tachi and katana meant long and short swords. and there should be no such thing as "This is the modern way to do it" in dueling. Some men use a shorter long sword with the intention of jumping in and stabbing the enemy at the unguarded moment when he flourishes his sword. for garrisoning castles. battle array. To aim for the enemy's unguarded moment is completely defensive. showing the spirit of not being moved even by a strong assault. people of the world get used to countering. 38 . and undesirable at close quarters with the enemy. The Way of Strategy is straight and true. Attitudes are for situations in which you are not to be moved. with your body held strongly and straight. and eventually become entangled with the enemy. The essence of strategy is to fall upon the enemy in large numbers and bring about his speedy downfall.Without the correct principle the fight cannot be won. By their study of strategy. You must force the enemy into inconvenient situations. evading and retreating as the normal thing. so there is no case for their liking the short sword. You must chase the enemy around and make him obey your spirit. Study this well. In the Way of dueling. They also make use of the length of spears and halberds. and so on. however. Some men think that if they go against many enemies with a shorter long sword they can unrestrictedly frisk around cutting in sweeps. The spirit of my school is to win through the wisdom of strategy.

there is something called "Attitude-No Attitude". Fixing the Eyes in Other Schools Some schools maintain that the eyes should be fixed on the enemy's long sword. Perception consists of concentrating strongly on the enemy's spirit. in my Way. when you have fought many times you will easily be able to appraise the speed and position of the enemy's sword. irritate and terrify him. but by good play on the field they can perform well. and having mastery of the Way you will see the weight of his spirit. Footballers do not fix their eyes on the ball. observing the enemy's numbers. The spirit of attacking first is completely different from the spirit of being attacked. or flourish swords in several ways when they have mastered the Way. Some schools fix the eyes on the hands. and some fix the eyes on the feet. throw him into confusion. In strategy. or that they make pointless movements of the sword.you must always be intent upon taking the lead and attacking. "Perception" and "sight" are the two methods of seeing. In large-scale strategy the area to watch is the enemy's strength. People such as master musicians have the music score in front of their nose. your spirit must go to the extent of pulling the stakes out of a wall and using them as spears and halberds. Attitude is the spirit of awaiting an attack. In duels of strategy you must move the opponent's attitude. with a strong attitude. I will explain this in detail. You must examine this well. is like making a wall of spears and halberds. If you fix the eyes on these places your spirit can become confused and your strategy thwarted. This is at the start of the battle. When you attack the enemy. Some fix the eyes on the face. You must appreciate this. I dislike the defensive spirit know as "attitude". observing the 39 . and so on. Take advantage of the enemy's rhythm when he is unsettled and you can win. When you become accustomed to something. Therefore. you are not limited to the use of your eyes. Bearing an attack well. Attack where his spirit is lax. In large-scale strategy we deploy our troops for battle bearing in mind our strength. but this does not mean that they fix their eyes on these things specifically. In the Way of Strategy. and noting the details of the battle field. fixing the eyes means gazing at the man's heart. It means that they can see naturally. and parrying the enemy's attack well.

the footwork does not change. fixing the gaze strongly. and a jumpy spirit. However much you jump. in which situations you cannot jump or move the feet quickly. Research this principle well and train diligently. Speed in Other Schools 40 . Sometimes. As I said before. if you fix your eyes on details and neglect important things. such as crow's foot. You must never lose control of your feet. swampy ground. your spirit will become bewildered. Treading foot is a "waiting" method. You must win by seizing upon the enemy's disorder and derangement. if you attack quickly and thoughtlessly without knowing the enemy's spirit. From the point of view of my strategy.condition of the battlefield. these are all unsatisfactory. or narrow roads. Apart from these. stony ground. Carrying the feet is important also in large-scale strategy. In single combat you must not fix the eyes on the details. move fast or slowly. jumping foot. Practice this well. there are various fast walking methods. seeing the progress of the fight and the changes of advantages. This is the sure way to win. and so on. the opportunity to win will escape. In my strategy. so jumping is bad. river valleys. I dislike floating foot because the feet always tend to float during the fight. and such nimble walking methods. you will not be able to take advantage of the enemy's disorder. because it encourages the habit of jumping. Or. however. and by not according him even a little hope of recovery. springing foot. According to the enemy's rhythm. if you advance too slowly. there is no real justification for it. I always walk as I usually do in the street. and victory will escape you. This is because. you may encounter the enemy on marshland. and I especially dislike it. and you will not be able to finish the fight quickly. treading foot. Neither do I like jumping foot. Springing foot causes a springing spirit which is indecisive. crow's foot. Use of the Feet in Other Schools There are various methods of using the feet: floating foot. your rhythm will become deranged and you will not be able to win. adjusting you body not too much and not too little. The Way must be trod firmly.

I gradually endeavour to explain the deep principle. From this example. Whatever the Way. then you will not be even a little late. You must appreciate this. slowness is bad. The reason for this is that depending on the place. and are always deliberate. If you try to cut quickly. Of course. Unpracticed runners may seem to have been running all day. I first teach by training in techniques which are easy for the pupil to understand. and never appear busy. but their performance is poor. Still less will you be able to cut quickly if you have a long sword in this situation. you will not actually cut even a little. but in combat there is no such thing as fighting on the surface. You must not be influenced by the opponent. Very skilful people can manage a fast rhythm. Speed implies that things seem fast or slow. but when beginners try this they slow down and their spirit becomes busy. according to the pupil's progress. If you try to beat too quickly you will get out of time. When I teach my Way. In any event. the principle can be seen. The artistic accomplishments usually claim inner meaning and secret tradition. but it is bad to beat hurriedly. points which it is hardly possible to comprehend. the master of strategy does not appear fast. and "interior" and "gate". as if using a fan or short sword. The spirit must be that of holding down a pillow. Some people can walk as fast as a hundred or a hundred and twenty miles in a day. according to whether or not they are in rhythm. or cutting with the interior. accomplished performers can sing while dancing. In large-scale strategy also. it may not be possible to move the body and legs together quickly. a fast busy spirit is undesirable. In the Way of dance.Speed is not part of the true Way of Strategy. I do not speak of "interior" and "gate". "Interior" and "Surface" in Other Schools There is no "interior" nor "surface" in strategy. Really skilful people never get out of time. What is known as speed is especially bad in the Way of Strategy. 41 . because the way to understanding is through experience. marsh or swamp and so on. a doctrine which is easy to understand. The "old pine tree" melody beaten on a leather drum is tranquil. but this does not mean that they run continuously from morning till night. Train diligently to attain this spirit. When your opponent is hurrying recklessly. but when beginners try this they slow down and their spirit becomes busy. you must act contrarily and keep calm.

Thus no one man's conception is valid for any school. so there must be differing ideas on the same matter. In strategy. Whatever the Way. we see that people always tend to like long swords or short swords. You must train diligently. we cannot say what is concealed and what is revealed. The reason for this is that different branches of schools give different interpretations of the doctrines. remove the bad influence of other schools. There is no inner meaning in sword attitudes. 42 . it has an interior. I could now continue by giving a specific account of these schools one by one. In my Ichi school of the long sword there is neither gate nor interior. In as much as men's opinions differ. Perceiving the ability of my pupils. from the "gate" to the "interior". The method of teaching my strategy is with a trustworthy spirit. If we look at them from an honest viewpoint. if you go into the mountains. You must simply keep your spirit true to realize the virtue of strategy. and it is sometimes a good thing to point out the gate. Accordingly I dislike passing on my Way through written pledges and regulations. I have tried to record an outline of the strategy of other schools in the above nine sections. and gradually introduce them to the true Way of the warrior. but I have intentionally not named the schools or their main points. and decide to go deeper and yet deeper.In this world. and become concerned with strength in both large and small matters. I have shown the general tendencies of other schools on nine points. You can see why I do not deal with the "gates" of other schools. I teach the direct Way. instead you will emerge at the gate.

you may think that things are correct and in order. It is not included in man's knowledge. It is bewilderment. those who study as warriors think that whatever they cannot understand in their craft is the void. and sharpen the twofold gaze perception and sight. there is the true void. and no evil. taking the void as the Way. also. However. Twelfth day of the fifth month. People in this world look at things mistakenly. Teruro Magonojo 43 . correctly and openly. With your spirit settled. What is called the spirit of the void is where there is nothing. accumulate practice day by day. if we look at things objectively. and with forthrightness as the foundation and the true spirit as the Way. spirit is nothingness. This is not the true void. we see various doctrines departing from the true Way. In the Way of Strategy. the Way has existence. second year of Shoho (1645). When your spirit is not in the least clouded. you will see the Way as void. That is the void. principle has existence. and hour by hour. Wisdom has existence. Until you realize the true Way. Then you will come to think of things in a wide sense and. Polish the twofold spirit heart and mind. To attain the Way of Strategy as a warrior you must study fully other martial arts and not deviate even a little from the Way of the warrior. whether in Buddhism or in common sense. and think that what they do not understand must be the void. from the viewpoint of laws of the world. Know well this spirit. This is not the true void.Chapter 5 THE BOOK OF THE VOID The Ni To Ichi Way of Strategy is recorded in this the Book of the Void. Of course the void is nothingness. By knowing things that exist. In the void is virtue. when the clouds of bewilderment clear away. Enact strategy broadly. you can know that which does not exist.

SHINMEN MUSASHI 44 .

polemical direction. In Plato's fictional dialogues the characters of Socrates as well as various Athenians and foreigners discuss the meaning of justice and examine whether the just man is happier than the unjust man by imagining a society ruled by philosopher-kings and the guardians. first published in 1886. the word itself means thread in Sanskrit.Loved this book ? Similar users also downloaded Plato The Republic The Republic is a Socratic dialogue by Plato. Vatsyayana The Kama Sutra The Kama Sutra. It takes up and expands on the ideas of his previous work. Traditionally. is a book by the German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche. Kāma means sensual or sexual pleasure. the first transmission of Kama Shastra or "Discipline of Kama" is attributed to Nandi the sacred bull. but approached from a more critical. and the immortality of the soul. Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche Beyond Good and Evil Beyond Good and Evil (German: Jenseits von Gut und Böse). In Beyond Good and Evil. the place of poetry. The Kama Sutra is the oldest and most notable of a group of texts known generically as Kama Shastra). A portion of the work consists of practical advice on sex. and Plato's best known work. and sūtra are the guidlines of yoga. who was moved to sacred utterance by overhearing the lovemaking of the god and his wife Parvati and later recorded his utterances for the benefit of mankind. Shiva's doorkeeper. The dialogue also discusses the role of the philosopher. written in approximately 380 BC. Plato's Theory of Forms. Thus Spoke Zarathustra. is an ancient Indian text widely considered to be the standard work on human sexual behavior in Sanskrit literature written by the Indian scholar Vatsyayana. subtitled "Prelude to a Philosophy of the Future" (Vorspiel einer Philosophie der Zukunft). It is one of the most influential works of philosophy and political theory. Nietzsche attacks past philosophers for 45 .

Composed of 13 chapters. five years after Machiavelli's death. each of which is devoted to one aspect of warfare. a satire. it was written in 1513. In order to make a popular explanation of this far-reaching theory available. The Art of War is one of the oldest books on military strategy in the world. but not published until 1532. It is the first and one of the most successful works on strategy and has had a huge influence on Eastern and Western military thinking. Sun Tzu was the first to recognize the importance of positioning in strategy and 46 . Niccolò Machiavelli The Prince Il Principe (The Prince) is a political treatise by the Florentine public servant and political theorist Niccolò Machiavelli. The work moves into the realm "beyond good and evil" in the sense of leaving behind the traditional morality which Nietzsche subjects to a destructive critique in favour of what he regards as an affirmative approach that fearlessly confronts the perspectival nature of knowledge and the perilous condition of the modern individual. and beyond. it has long been praised as the definitive work on military strategies and tactics of its time. It has also been suggested by some critics that the piece is. Sun Tzu The Art of War The Art of War is a Chinese military treatise that was written during the 6th century BC by Sun Tzu. Originally called De Principatibus (About Principalities). but it is the most remembered. it is nevertheless a fact that there is a constant demand for information about this much-debated topic of relativity. The books published on the subject are so technical that only a person trained in pure physics and higher mathematics is able to fully understand them.their alleged lack of critical sense and their blind acceptance of Christian premises in their consideration of morality. The treatise is not representative of the work published during his lifetime. the present book is published. Hendrik Antoon Lorentz The Einstein Theory of Relativity Whether it is true or not that not more than twelve persons in all the world are able to understand Einstein's Theory. business tactics. and the work responsible for bringing "Machiavellian" into wide usage as a pejorative term. in fact.

It was first published in 1906. but in a competitive environment. not only for Taoism but Chinese Buddhism. yet powerful and lyrical. The two words together mean "one who has found meaning (of existence)" or "he who has attained his goals". aided by hundreds of translations into Western languages. Hermann Hesse Siddhartha Siddhartha is an allegorical novel by Hermann Hesse which deals with the spiritual journey of an Indian boy called Siddhartha during the time of the Buddha. calligraphers. and even gardeners have used the Tao Te Ching as a source of inspiration. Source: Wikipedia Laozi Tao Te Ching The Tao Te Ching is fundamental to the Taoist school of Chinese philosophy and strongly influenced other schools. He taught that strategy was not planning in the sense of working through a to-do list. The Buddha's name. Planning works in a controlled environment. was written in German. Many Chinese artists. Its influence has also spread widely outside East Asia. 47 . the Buddha is referred to as "Gotama". and has since been republished many times. which when first introduced into China was largely interpreted through the use of Taoist words and concepts. It was published in the U. in 1951 and became influential during the 1960s. later the Buddha.S. Kakuzo Okakura The Book of Tea The Book of Tea was written by Okakura Kakuzo in the early 20th century.that position is affected both by objective conditions in the physical environment and the subjective opinions of competitive actors in that environment. such as Legalism and Neo-Confucianism. style. The book. after Hesse had spent some time in India in the 1910s. painters. was Prince Siddhartha Gautama. before his renunciation. in a simple. but rather that it requires quick and appropriate responses to changing conditions. It was first published in 1922. This ancient book is also central in Chinese religion. siddha (gotten) + artha (meaning or wealth). Hesse's ninth novel. In this book. including poets. The word Siddhartha is made up of two words in the Sanskrit language.

In the book. and it was not meant that we should voyage far. it was first published in Weird Tales. Howard Phillips Lovecraft The Call of Cthulhu "The Call of Cthulhu" is one of H. It is written in a documentary style. most importantly. It is the only story written by Lovecraft in which the extraterrestrial entity Cthulhu himself makes a major appearance. and spends some time talking about Sen no Rikyu and his contribution to the Japanese Tea Ceremony. In his book. The book emphasises how Teaism taught the Japanese many things. February 1928. but also the secular aspects of Tea and Japanese life. which Imamichi's teacher had offerred to Heidegger in 1919. and he was a long-time student of the visual arts. is the inability of the human mind to correlate all its contents. P. He ends the book with a chapter on Tea Masters. thought. simplicity. I think. becoming proficient at communicating his thoughts to the Western Mind. after having followed lessons with him the year before. and life. The narrator pieces together the whole truth and disturbing significance of the information he possesses. Kakuzo argues that this tea-induced simplicity affected art and architecture." 48 . According to Tomonobu Imamichi. Written in the summer of 1926. We live on a placid island of ignorance in the midst of black seas of infinity. illustrating the story's first line: "The most merciful thing in the world. and spoke it all his life. Kakuzo introduces the term Teaism and how Tea has affected nearly every aspect of Japanese culture. Lovecraft's best-known short stories. Heidegger's concept of Dasein in Sein und Zeit was inspired — although Heidegger remains silent on this — by Okakura Kakuzo's concept of das-in-dem-Weltsein (to be in the being of the world) expressed in The Book of Tea to describe Zhuangzi's philosophy. with three independent narratives linked together by the device of a narrator discovering notes left by a deceased relative. The book is accessibile to Western audiences because Kakuzo was taught at a young age to speak English. he discusses such topics as Zen and Taoism.

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