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Budoshoshinshu: The Warrior's Primer of Daidoji Yuzan (Literary Links to the Orient) [Paperback]

William Scott Wilson
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Black Belt Communications (1 April 1984)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0897500962
  • ISBN-13: 978-0897500968
  • Product Dimensions: 22.5 x 14.8 x 0.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,083,228 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Synopsis

This 17th-century text written for the education and guidance of Japanese warriors delineates the ethics, morality, and daily duties of a class of people dedicated to honor and courage.

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
A lot has been said and written about the "bushido" and most is without historical accuracy. Budoshoshinshu is one of the actual, rare original writings that really cover the subject. Written in time of relative peace, when the warrior class of Japan had to contemplate it's own values when their "trade", fighting in war, was a rare occurence. The book consists of short introduction of the original author and the time he lived and the translation of the original work. Mr. Wilson has done an excellent job translating the book and The Warrior's Prime is enjoyable reading for people interested in the ideals, morals, mindstate and the history of the bushi (samurai) class. The only one thing really bothers me are the illustrations, which are very inaccurate historically and don't really fit the serious issues in the text and the historical value of the book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Original Translation? 24 July 2007
This is a really interesting & enlightening read. You get a real feel for the way the mind of the Samurai worked some 400 years ago. It's miraculous & very fortunate for us that copies of such books survived that various warring periods & times of great upheaval in Japan over this time.

This subject is still relatively new to me & there appear to be several different versions of the Bushido around (?). This one by Daidji Yzan appeared between 1639 - 1730, which is some years before the one that draws the main amount of interest and my question is who's copying who?

This one seems to be more complete & covers a wider range of subjects that the "other" version by Tsunetomo Yamamoto, sometimes referred to as the "Hagakure". Tsunetomo was born some 20 years after Daidji & lived between 1659 - 1719.

This book is presented in 56 short treatises about the proper way a Samurai should live & conduct himself.

There is another & later copy of this book by Thomas Cleary called "The Code of the Samurai: A Modern Translation of the Bushido Shoshinshu of Taira Shigesuke in which he lists 44 such duties of a Samurai. Whether or not some of these duties have been grouped together I can't yet say, however, either copy of the book are fantastically insightful & interesting.

A great translation which must have been difficult for the authors & a fairly easy read. Although the subject is a little dry it's not at all heavy & would be enjoyed & very useful to anyone practicing any form of [traditional] martial art.
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Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  6 reviews
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Original Translation? 24 July 2007
By Terry Tozer - Published on Amazon.com
This is a really interesting & enlightening read. You get a real feel for the way the mind of the Samurai worked some 400 years ago. It's miraculous & very fortunate for us that copies of such books survived that various warring periods & times of great upheaval in Japan over this time.

This subject is still relatively new to me & there appear to be several different versions of the Bushido around (?). This one by Daidji Yzan appeared between 1639 - 1730, which is some years before the one that draws the main amount of interest and my question is who's copying who?

This one seems to be more complete & covers a wider range of subjects that the "other" version by Tsunetomo Yamamoto, sometimes referred to as the "Hagakure". Tsunetomo was born some 20 years after Daidji & lived between 1659 - 1719.

This book is presented in 56 short treatises about the proper way a Samurai should live & conduct himself.

There is another & later copy of this book by Thomas Cleary called "The Code of the Samurai" ISBN: 0804831904 in which he lists 44 such duties of a Samurai. Whether or not some of these duties have been grouped together I can't yet say, however, either copy of the book are fantastically insightful & interesting.

A great translation which must have been difficult for the authors & a fairly easy read. Although the subject is a little dry it's not at all heavy & would be enjoyed & very useful to anyone practicing any form of [traditional] martial art.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Excellent Translation 4 Jan 2011
By Nathan Brown - Published on Amazon.com
As always, Wilson has done an excellent job translating this text. His translations are always a joy to read, and this book is no exception.
4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's a shame that modern day books on morality are not written this way... 10 May 2006
By Nathan K - Published on Amazon.com
When someone becomes fascinated by older Japanese culture, this is a definite must read. Though written in the 17th century, a lot of common sense morals can be found throughout this book. There are some items that will most likely not pertain to the reader, such as "Choosing a horse" (book 1), however there are some that everyone in everyday society from any nationality should live by every day of their lives. (ex. "A Warrior Who Strikes His Wife is a Coward" (book 2), and "Loyalty Includes Longevity" (book 3))

When you are finished reading, I strongly suggest that you find someone that you can loan or give this book to that can take something from it.
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential Addition to the Warrior Philosophy Collection 4 Jun 2009
By Ronin - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
I am a huge fan of everything translated by William Scott Wilson, and have been since his first release of "Ideals of the Samurai". Wilson offers 3-reasons why the Budoshoshinshu material is important. It is his 3rd reason that resonates with me:

"Third, and most important I suspect, is that the tendency in many of us to feel that within the world of the Japanese warrior there was an approach to life which, if not superior to our own, had something that ours is definitely lacking. But is it translatable? I think it is: and with some thought we may be able to see that there are parallels in our spiritual if not our temporal situations, and that these men may have something to say to us as well.....Are we really satisfied with our life as "consumers"? Can we not do something better with ourselves than just make money? These were men who knew something of values, and implicit in their values is the idea that life is worth more than just serving our own materialism and greed."

The author, Daidoji Yuzan compiled this collection of ideals at age 92. This is an outstanding collection of the tenants of Bushido, and is a must read for anyone interested in martial philosophy. If you are new to this subject, you will not find this book to be an easy or entertaining read. For the rest, dig in and enjoy!
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent guide to the philosophy followed by the 17th century Japanese Samurai. 13 July 2009
By Joseph J. Truncale - Published on Amazon.com
Before the author(Daidoji Yuzan) died at age 92, he wrote these essays on the proper conduct of the Japanese Samurai because he observed a lack of discipline among the younger samurai. This editon was translated by William Scott Wilson, who also translated two other Japanese (Hagakure: the book of the Samurai and Ideals of the Samurai)books. This book may have been the most read by the samurai in the 17th century. There are fifty six short essays outlining the proper conduct of the samurai. This book can also be considered as a lens to the past on the every day life of the ancient samurai.

An example of a few of these essays include: A samurai must constantly be thinking about death, always be prepared for battle, be devoted to one's parents, gossip and back talk are inexcusable, ability and dilgence, do not mix personal feelings with duties, rules for a guardian, the warrior who strikes his wife is a coward, the warrior's duty is to protect the farmer, craftsman and merchant, loyalty includes longevity, and much, much more. In conclusion, this is a book for anyone interested in how the samurai thought, made decisions and lived his life.

Rating: 5 stars. Joseph J. Truncale (Author: Season of the Warrior: a poetic tribute to warriors)
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