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The Book of Five Rings (The Way of the…
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The Book of Five Rings (The Way of the Warrior Series) (original 1643; edition 2002)

by Miyamoto Musashi (Author), William Scott Wilson (Translator)

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3,988392,158 (3.79)37
The Book of Five Rings is one of the most insightful texts on the subtle arts of confrontation and victory to emerge from Asian culture. Written not only for martial artists but for anyone who wants to apply the timeless principles of this text to their life, the book analyzes the process of struggle and mastery over conflict that underlies every level of human interaction. The Book of Five Rings was composed in 1643 by the famed duelist and undefeated samurai Miyamoto Musashi. Thomas Cleary's translation is immediately accessible, with an introduction that presents the spiritual background of the warrior tradition. Along with Musashi's text, Cleary translates here another important Japanese classic on leadership and strategy, The Book of Family Traditions on the Art of War by Yagyu Munenori, which highlights the ethical and spiritual insights of Taoism and Zen as they apply to the way of the warrior.… (more)
Member:AlanaAssimina
Title:The Book of Five Rings (The Way of the Warrior Series)
Authors:Miyamoto Musashi (Author)
Other authors:William Scott Wilson (Translator)
Info:Kodansha USA (2002), Edition: 1st, 160 pages
Collections:Untitled collection
Rating:
Tags:Martial Arts

Work details

A Book of Five Rings (Gorin No Sho): A Practical Guide to Strategy by Miyamoto Musashi (Author) (1643)

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» See also 37 mentions

English (33)  Spanish (2)  French (1)  Finnish (1)  Portuguese (Brazil) (1)  Italian (1)  All languages (39)
Showing 1-5 of 33 (next | show all)
This book, written by a famous Japanese duelist, tells one of his relatives how to win with the sword. It is divided into five "Rings" based on five "Elements". He concentrates on Strategy and does not talk about the best guard to take or other technicalities. Many people find this book to be immoral as it espouses winning at all costs in a deadly pursuit. I regard it more as a-moral. Musashi simply never considers the question. He is simply putting down his concept of Strategy. Perhaps the moral onus is on the reader of the book?

Students of Zen would do well to read the book, particularly the final Ring - entitled The Void. Afterward the perceptive student would take up an individual sport - not necessarily fencing, tennis would do just as well - and give up trying to solve koans. After all, even the Masters say that the more you study Zen the further from enlightenment you get and there can be little doubt that Musashi was a master.

This translation from the original Japanese also contains an insightful introduction. ( )
  Arbieroo | Jul 17, 2020 |
THE WINNING STRATEGY
1. Do not harbor sinister designs.
2. Diligently pursue the Path of Two-Swords-as-One.
3. Cultivate a wide range of interests in the arts.
4. Be knowlegable in a variety of occupations.
5. Be discreet regarding one's commercial dealings.
6. Nurture the ability to perceive the truth in all matters.
7. Perceive that which cannot be seen with the eye.
8. Do not be negligent, even in trifling matters.
9. Do not engage in useless activity. ( )
  bread2u | Jul 1, 2020 |
I can't believe I never read this before now, but damn, HAVING read it now, I also appreciate it more.

Huh? Am I learning the way of the blade, wanting to defeat my foes from first principles and needing someone from many hundreds of years ago to tell me to EXPLORE THE PRACTICE DEEPLY? Yes? Practice it a LOT?

No. I'm not picking up a blade, and I'm not reading this from the PoV of some modern businessman wanting to get one-up on my competition, but I sure as hell got a LOT out of this.

You can say that it can be distilled down into a version of Buddhism, or you can say the essence is Fire, Wind, Water, and Stone, plus The Emptiness. But saying so doesn't explain a damn thing, nor does it teach anyone what is really beneath the words in this very clear text.

It does, however, lend itself WONDERFULLY to metaphor. Analogy.

I mean, of COURSE you're supposed to aim for the face. It always makes them flinch.

Of course you're supposed to dominate the battlefield with your own timing, never losing momentum, and always face your opponents with courage.

Pay attention to everything. Use everything.

But above all, heed the path of the Emptiness. Stop assuming shit! Learn your lessons well, always be honest with yourself, and never stop facing -- absolutely everything.

I think I'm going to buy this in a very nice edition and place it within my reach everywhere I go. It's that good. After all, minds ARE blades. ( )
1 vote bradleyhorner | Jun 1, 2020 |
From the Blurb: Today's business people will find Thomas Cleary's new translation of The Book od Five Rings - Miyamoto Musashi's 350-year-old martial arts classic - compelling and tantalizingly relevant. Perseverance, insight, self-understanding, inward calm even in the midst of chaos, the importance of swift but unhurried action: Musashi's teachings read like lessons from the latest business management gurus. Who couldn't succeed in business by applying Musashi's insights on conflict and strategy!" ( )
  nadineeg | Jun 3, 2019 |
To fans of philosophy and strategy, this is one more of those great reads. Like Sun Tzu's Art of War, The Five Rings has estrategies very specific to its time. However, its time already involved guns amongst the Samurai, making it a pretty "modern" approach.

Besides the books teachings on martial arts, a lot of lessons are to be learned from it that can be applied to a normal person on it's path of life, like focus on especialty (can be university course or a carreer) and not letting it stop you from learning new skills and arts. It allows us to expand our consciensciousness, adaptability and sucess.

Of course its main theme is the use of the long sword and its mastery, but Musashi shows us many examples from other professions that use very similar mentalities and tactics to master, requiring dilligent reflection and, above all, practice, practice and more practice. It's a book that helps the person keep out from big distractions, keeping always on the Way without neglecting skills that might be useful later on. Some prefer thousands of big business gurus and coaching, but in the end, they're adapted ideas that come from books like this (or Art of War, Bible, Budhism...)and adapted to whatever behavioral product they're selling, the same way you can pick this book yourself and do the same being your own coach, with todays ethics. ( )
1 vote Igor_Veloso | May 12, 2019 |
Showing 1-5 of 33 (next | show all)
Knjiga koja na engleskom nosi ispravan naziv „Knjiga pet sfera“, delo Mijamota Musašija posvećeno umeću ratovanja, predstavlja čisto pragmatični poduhvat. Musaši ismeva spoljašnji sjaj i komercijalizaciju borilačkih veština, usmeravajući pažnju na psihološki i fizički aspekt smrtonosnog napada i odlučne pobede kao suštine ratovanja.

Njegov naučno agresivan, u potpunosti nemilosrdan pristup vojnoj nauci, iako nije bio široko zastupljen među japanskim majstorima borilačkih veština, predstavlja jednu visoko koncentrovanu karakterizaciju određenog tipa ratnika samuraja. Iako se u vezi njegovih dramatičnih podviga razvio čitav korpus legendi, malo se toga pouzdano zna o životu Mijamota Musašija. Ono što je on izneo o sebi u svojoj „Knjizi pet prstenova“ je primarni izvor istorijskih činjenica. Prvi put je u borbi ubio čoveka sa trinaest godina, a poslednji put sa dvadeset i devet godina. U jednom trenutku svog života on je navodno prestao da koristi pravi mač, ali je nastavio da zadaje smrtonosne udarce protivnicima sve do kraja karijere mačevaoca. Poslednje tri decenije života Musaši je proveo usavršavajući i podučavajući svoju ratničku nauku. Priča se da se nikada nije češljao, da se nikada nije kupao, da se nije ženio, da nije stvorio dom i da nije podizao decu. Iako je poznavao društvene veštine svog vremena i uistinu ih je preporučivao svakome, Mijamoto Musaši je u suštini išao asketskim putem ratnika do kraja svog života.

Ovo izdanje sadrži u sebi još jednu proslavljenu knjigu, Knjigu porodičnih predanja o umeću ratovanja, Jagju Munenorija, čuvenog samuraja koji se u poznim godinama posvetio zen budizmu. Otuda ova knjiga predstavlja spoj zena i borilačkih veština.
 
Knjiga koja na engleskom nosi ispravan naziv „Knjiga pet sfera“, delo Mijamota Musašija posvećeno umeću ratovanja, predstavlja čisto pragmatični poduhvat. Musaši ismeva spoljašnji sjaj i komercijalizaciju borilačkih veština, usmeravajući pažnju na psihološki i fizički aspekt smrtonosnog napada i odlučne pobede kao suštine ratovanja.

Njegov naučno agresivan, u potpunosti nemilosrdan pristup vojnoj nauci, iako nije bio široko zastupljen među japanskim majstorima borilačkih veština, predstavlja jednu visoko koncentrovanu karakterizaciju određenog tipa ratnika samuraja. Iako se u vezi njegovih dramatičnih podviga razvio čitav korpus legendi, malo se toga pouzdano zna o životu Mijamota Musašija. Ono što je on izneo o sebi u svojoj „Knjizi pet prstenova“ je primarni izvor istorijskih činjenica. Prvi put je u borbi ubio čoveka sa trinaest godina, a poslednji put sa dvadeset i devet godina. U jednom trenutku svog života on je navodno prestao da koristi pravi mač, ali je nastavio da zadaje smrtonosne udarce protivnicima sve do kraja karijere mačevaoca. Poslednje tri decenije života Musaši je proveo usavršavajući i podučavajući svoju ratničku nauku. Priča se da se nikada nije češljao, da se nikada nije kupao, da se nije ženio, da nije stvorio dom i da nije podizao decu. Iako je poznavao društvene veštine svog vremena i uistinu ih je preporučivao svakome, Mijamoto Musaši je u suštini išao asketskim putem ratnika do kraja svog života.

Ovo izdanje sadrži u sebi još jednu proslavljenu knjigu, Knjigu porodičnih predanja o umeću ratovanja, Jagju Munenorija, čuvenog samuraja koji se u poznim godinama posvetio zen budizmu. Otuda ova knjiga predstavlja spoj zena i borilačkih veština.
 

» Add other authors (84 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Musashi, MiyamotoAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Miyamoto, Musashimain authorall editionsconfirmed
Cleary, ThomasTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Harris, VictorTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Munenori, YagyuContributorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Riemann, GerhardEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Schaarschmidt, SiegfriedTranslator and Commentatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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(Translator's Introduction by Thomas Cleary): The Book of Five Rings and The Book of Family Traditions on the Art of War are two of the most important texts on conflict and strategy emerging from the Japanese warrior culture.
(Preface): The science of martial arts called the Individual School of Two Skies is something that I have spent many years refining.
Martial arts are the warrior's way of life.
(Translator's Introduction by Victor Harris): Miyamoto Musashi was born in 1584, in a Japan struggling to recover from more than four centuries of internal strife.
Quotations
All things, at first try, are difficult to handle.
Broaden your knowledge. It is necessary to polish your own path.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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The Book of Five Rings is one of the most insightful texts on the subtle arts of confrontation and victory to emerge from Asian culture. Written not only for martial artists but for anyone who wants to apply the timeless principles of this text to their life, the book analyzes the process of struggle and mastery over conflict that underlies every level of human interaction. The Book of Five Rings was composed in 1643 by the famed duelist and undefeated samurai Miyamoto Musashi. Thomas Cleary's translation is immediately accessible, with an introduction that presents the spiritual background of the warrior tradition. Along with Musashi's text, Cleary translates here another important Japanese classic on leadership and strategy, The Book of Family Traditions on the Art of War by Yagyu Munenori, which highlights the ethical and spiritual insights of Taoism and Zen as they apply to the way of the warrior.

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Escrito em 1643 por Miyamoto Musashi, mestre espadachim e lendário samurai invencível, O Livro dos Cinco Anéis é um dos textos mais importantes sobre conflito e estratégia que emergiram da cultura marcial japonesa.
Quando registou os seus pensamentos sobre a arte de manejar a espada, a vitória e a espiritualidade, o lendário guerreiro Miyamoto Musashi concebeu este modesto tratado como um guia para os seus discípulos e para as futuras gerações de samurais. Não fazia ideia de que traçava uma obra-prima que viria a ser lida avidamente pelos mais diversos leitores modernos séculos após a sua morte.
Os sábios e acutilantes conselhos e observações de Musashi aplicam-se não só a mestres marciais mas também a líderes em todas as profissões — ele analisa o processo de luta e domínio sobre o conflito que marca todos os níveis de interacção humana. Os conselhos intemporais sobre a forma de derrotar o adversário, apanhá-lo desprevenido, gerar o caos e outras técnicas para suplantar o adversário destinavam-se aos guerreiros de outras eras que as punham em prática no campo de batalha e serve agora os interesses do leitor moderno no campo de batalha da vida.
Em conjunto com A Arte da Guerra, de Sun Tzu, O Código de Honra do Samurai, de Taïra Shigésuké, e O Príncipe, de Maquiavel, O Livro dos Cinco Anéis há muito que é considerado um verdadeiro tratado acerca da estratégia da vitória.
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