Tao by Matsumoto

Chapter 31



  [Tao Te Ching Chapter 31]  Arms / English translation

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Arms are instruments of no good omen.

Things may detest them.

Therefore, a man with Tao doesn't use them.

Usually, a gentleman respect the left.

When he uses arms, he respect the right.

Arms are instruments of no good omen.

They are not the instruments of a gentleman.

If you cannot help using them, doing so without attachment is the best.

Even if you win, it is not beautiful.

If you find it beautiful, you enjoy slaying people.

If you enjoy slaying people, your wish of obtaining the world will not come true.

A happy occasion thinks highly of the left.

An unhappy occasion thinks highly of the right.

A lieutenant general sits on the left.

A general sits on the right.

It means that they treat this like a funeral.

If many people lose their lives, cry with sorrow.

If you win, treat like a funeral.


Wang Bi 王弼 (226–249) didn't leave any comment on this chapter. It is assumed that it was not originally written by Lao Tzu. It seems strange that the Taoist Lao Tzu should be talking about war. As Lao Tzu teaches us, Tao by Matsumoto does not want to judge whether it is his writing or not. The editorship would like to leave the readers to decide it. So, there are neither paraphrasing nor videos here.


If you are interested in Aikido, Please read Tatsuo Kimura's «Transparent Power». Whether you like Daito-ryu or not, the book will tell you the ideal of Aikido. The author is a disciple of late Yukiyoshi Sagawa and a professor at University of Tsukuba. He is a Aikido-ka martial artist and mathematician who works with Fournier Transforms and Reimann's zeta function. The samurai swordsman Miyamoto, Musashi wrote «The Book of Five Rings / Gorin no Sho». He was an excellent painter and calligrapher as well. His idea was [ken zen ichi nyo], which means "the sword and Zen are the same."  合気道  佐川幸義  筑波大学  宮本武蔵  五輪書  剣禅一如

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Farewell to arms. Although the

Katana, or the Japanese sword,

was a symbol of the samurai,

they no longer had battle fields

to show their skill of

swordsmanship in the 18th

century. Read «Hagakure», and

you will find out that the book is

useful to be a good bureaucrat

rather than a warrior. Yukio

Mishima's «Sun and Steel»was

published in 1968. More than

two decades after World War 2,

Japan was enjoying peace. The moment his country truly needed his youthful

help during the war, the author narrowly "escaped" the draft because of some

health reasons. He wrote the essays on «Hagakure». The Japanese title is

«Hagakure Nyumon», which means "The introduction to Hagakure». The

English translation was published under the title «The Way of Samurai» or

«Yukio Mishima on Hagakure: The Samurai Ethic and Modern Japan».  刀  葉

  三島由紀夫 「太陽と鉄」 葉隠入門