DOKKODO - Terao Magonojo - Genshin - Shoho (1645) Gogatsu 12 (May 12th) Shinmen Musashi


Within the writings of Miyamoto Musashi creator of The Niten Ichi Ryu,we always find the Hyoho Sanjukajo (35 notes)

The Gorin-no-sho (Writings of the Five Elements) was written based on the Hyoho Sanjugokajo.

Dokkodo is actual fact a shorter version of Hyoho Sanjukajo and Gorin-no-sho and it contains all the meanings of method and philosophy of these writings. In the past, The writer
Kan Kikuchi and Noaki Sanjugo discussed and had a disagreement over the matter of Miyamoto Musashi. Kikuchi’s comments on Musashi were, Amongst politicians, scholars and martial officers, how many people are like Musashi. I personally respect and nominate Musashi, as the number one swordsman. I also believe him to be a person foremost in general affairs. To me Musashi is an expert in human behaviour and sword saint. As to his qualities as a human being he was one of the great artists and philosophers. He was also a great calligrapher. He was a person of such character that he should be regarded as a Human National Treasure.

Another writer Ryotaro Shiba stated wrote a book called Shisetsu Miyamoto Musashi (The true story of Miyamoto Musashi). He wrote, how the great Musashi’s sculpture, painting, philosophy and logic stands out loud and clear. The best three nominations for famous writings before the Meiji era were the Gorin-no-sho. Tanni-sho - Notes lamenting differences and Hakkutsu-no-Gobunsho - Stories of a Skeleton.

There is no authors name in any of the Tanni-sho texts. The problem of authorship has concerned scholars of Shin Buddhism for centuries. Several different opinions suggest three possible authors: Nyoshin (1239-1300) Kakunyo (1270-1351) or Yuien (Direct disciple of Shinran).

Musashi sensei's Gorin-no-sho has been acclaimed as a highly advanced writing equal to the sacredness of Buddhism. This signifies that Gorin-no-sho is not only a martial text but is quite adequate as a Buddhist evaluation. It counterparts Tann-i-sho and Hakkotsu-no-gobunsho. This is the reason why Kan Kikuchi declared Musashi as one of the greatest philosophers in history.


To study Dokkodo, and comprehend is meaning and quality, it is necessary to understand the awakening of the heart which is written at the beginning of Gorin-no-sho. According to writings in the Niten-Ki, Musashi had been taken ill and was receiving treatment at his residence which was within Chiba Jo (castle). On the 12th May in the year of Shoho (1645), seven days before he passed away he presented certain articles to close friends and followers. He asked these close friends to employ students who had no work to give them security. He then completed writing Dokkodo without fear or hesitation, with a clean, clear mind. In the historical document Niten-Ki there are nineteen phrases. Two more as written in Dokkodo are missing.

Mi o asaku omoi, yo wo fukau omou
(see number four)

Mi o sutetemo myori wa sutezu.

The Niten-Ki is dated 12th May Shoho (1645), is signed
Shinmen Musashi Gensai but has no forwarding address. In the original Dokkodo document there are twenty one phrases. This in fact was the only document left by Musashi. It was addressed to his lineal student Magonojo Terao and is esoteric in intimating to students how they should go about studying and investigating in their lives.

Dokkodo was written and left as a message to future followers. The message within is dependent upon the individual readers own level of understanding. Musashi was a great philosopher, National Human Treasure and an enlightened individual. The twenty-one phrases are structured in order of superiority with a quality equal to the famous Tanni-sho. Between the first paragraph Yoyo no Michiwo Somukukoto Nashi; In no way should one act contrary to the great future you have before you.


The last, Tsuneni Hyoho no michi o Hanarazu: Never part from the way of strategy, is contained the will which Musashi wanted to hand on to his followers before he passed on.

Yoyo no michiwo somukukoto nashi - In no way should one act contrary to the great future you have before you.


: Mi ni tanoshimi o takamazu - Dont Try and look for an easy life.


Yorozu ni iko no kokoro nashi - Don’t harbor a prejudice or have an attitude about everything.


Iko no kokoro nashi also means Satto jizai. Satto means one’s homeland or motherland. The possibility effortless birth.

Mi o asaku omoi yo o fu kaku omou - Consider your superficiality and have profound thoughts for others.

Waga koto ni oite kokai wo sezu. Never have regrets about oneself.

Zen aku ni ta wo netamu kokoro nashi - There should be no mind of enviousness in right or wrong.

Sozen to wa soto gawa kara mieru:

Means, 'When I look at people I am disturbed by them and am envious.'

Izure no michi nimo wakare wo kanashimazu - Never have a mind of adherence and attachment to all things.


Jitatomoni Urami Kakotsu Kokoronashi - There should be no thought of bearing a grudge against each other.


Rembo no michi omoi kokoro nashi - There is no time for thinking of romance.


Mono goto ni suki konomu koto nashi - There should be no likes and dislikes.


Shitaku ni oite nosomu kokoro nashi - Do no harbor a heart for keeping a residence.


Mi hitotsuni bishoku wo konomazu - Likes and dislikes of sustenance.


Dai mono naru furuki dogu shojisezu - Never let future generations have an attachment to weapons.


Issho no aida yokoshin omoazu - Forget about human desire

Path leading to Reigando - Alexander Bradshaw 2005



Hyakutake-Watkin ©1992