Good evening. Back in 2008 or so (some of you read in another thread) I worked with some friends on a deeper exploration of the Dokkodo - Musashi's 21 Precepts. (If you've ever heard of "The Book of Five Rings" that's a more well-known writing of his; in Japanese it's "Gorin no Sho.") I was training in Hapkido at the time; our master - a PhD in Eastern Philosophy - found this an interesting idea, and asked for an abstract (an abstract for those who don't know is a one-page or one-paragraph description of a paper giving the basic outline, including a simple conclusion.) The result of this is I was invited to give a presentation of this, as a paper, at the APA (American Philosophical Association)'s west coast regional gathering, at the annual meeting of the Society for the Study of Philosophy in the Martial Arts. So there I was, a simple butcher, giving a talk in front of ALL THESE UNIVERSITY PEOPLE OMG. And it was very well received. Regardless, I'm wondering if anyone here would be interested in repeating that project. Say, once a week or so, looking at each precept, I can pull out the Japanese (Romanji, so we could actually pronounce it) and literal English translation, and see how we would apply this 17th century concept to each of our own 21st century realities. (And frankly I think I could use a revisiting of the project; it's been a rough year for me.) Any takers? Below I'll copy the precepts, look them over and see what you think. 1. Do not go against the way of the human world that is perpetuated from generation to generation. 2. Do not seek pleasure for its own sake. 3. Do not, in any circumstances, depend upon a partial feeling. 4. Think lightly of yourself and think deeply of the world. 5. Be detached from desire your whole life long. 6. Do not regret what you have done. 7. Never be jealous of others, either in good or in evil. 8. Never let yourself be saddened by a separation. 9. Resentment and complaint are appropriate neither for yourself nor for others. 10. Do not let yourself be guided by feelings of love. 11. In all things, do not have any preferences. 12. Do not have any particular desire regarding your private domicile. 13. Do not pursue the taste of good food. 14. Do not possess ancient objects intended to be preserved for the future. 15. Do not act following customary beliefs. 16. Do not seek especially either to collect or to practice arms beyond what is useful. 17. Do not shun death in the way. 18. Do not seek to possess either goods or fiefs for your old age. 19. Respect Buddha and the gods without counting on their help. 20. You can abandon your own body, but you must hold onto your own honor. 21. Never stray from the way of strategy.