The Book of Five Rings (五輪書 Go Rin No Sho) is a text on kenjutsu and the martial arts in general, written by the swordsman Miyamoto Musashi circa 1645. There have been various translations made over the years, and it enjoys an audience considerably broader than only that of martial artists: for instance, some business leaders find its discussion of conflict and taking the advantage to be relevant to their work. The modern-day Hyōhō Niten Ichi-ryū employs it as a manual of technique and philosophy.
Here, we will begin to Explore Miyamoto Musashi’s The Book Of Five Rings, and Samurai training and culture in general.
To learn a Japanese martial art is to learn Zen, and although you can't do so simply by reading a book, it sure does help--especially if that book is The Book of Five Rings.
One of Japan's great samurai sword masters penned in decisive, unfaltering terms this certain path to victory, and like Sun Tzu's The Art of War it is applicable not only on the battlefield but also in all forms of competition.
Always observant, creating confusion, striking at vulnerabilities--these are some of the basic principles.
Going deeper, we find suki, the interval of vulnerability, of indecisiveness, of rest, the briefest but most vital moment to strike.
In succinct detail, Miyamoto Musashi records ideal postures, blows, and psychological tactics to put the enemy off guard and open the way for attack.
Most important of all is Miyamoto Musashi's concept of rhythm, how all things are in harmony, and that by working with the rhythm of a situation we can turn it to our advantage with little effort. But like Zen, this requires one task above all else, putting the book down and going out to practice.