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Samurai Archives Japanese History Podcast


Nov 20, 2014

In part two of our philosophical musings on Samurai, Bushido, and death, Chris and Forest look at how one's perception of reality constrains and shapes thier outlook and actions, and would have surely shaped the views and actions of the Samurai.  The intent in going off to battle as a Samurai wasn't to valiantly seek death, but to survive and prosper.  However, since death was always on the table, the goal was to, if nothing else, gain utility from their death - furthering their name, their family, and thier clan - because cowardice in battle was a sure way to get your family put to the sword during the Sengoku period.  But, above all, Samurai were human, and whatever their personal plans were for combat, as Mike Tyson once said, "Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the face", and snap decisions ruled the day in the heat of battle - some men rose up and brought glory, and others folded in a messy heap.

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