Martial arts>Concepts>Dokkodo

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The " Dokkodo" translated as "The path of aloneness", "The way to go forth alone", or "The way of walking alone" is a short work written by Miyamoto Musashi a week before he died in 1645.

Miyamoto Musashi

Miyamoto Musashi (c. 1584–June 13, 1645), also known as Shinmen Takezō, Miyamoto Bennosuke, or by his Buddhist name, Niten Dōraku, was a Japanese swordsman and rōnin. He was renowned for stories of his outstanding swordsmanship in numerous duels, even from a very young age. He was the founder of the niten-ryū style of swordsmanship and the author of The Book of Five Rings, a book on strategy, tactics, and philosophy that is still studied today.

What is the Dokkodo

The Dokkodo was composed as Musashi was giving away his possessions in preparation for his death from illness. He dedicated the work to his favorite disciple, Terao Magonojō, to whom he had earlier dedicated The Book of Five Rings. The twenty-one precepts of Dokkodo express a stringent, honest, self-disciplined, and ascetic view of life and was meant to be a guide to future generations.


  • Accept everything just the way it is.
  • Do not seek pleasure for its own sake.
  • Do not, under any circumstances, depend on a partial feeling.
  • Think lightly of yourself and deeply of the world.
  • Be detached from desire your whole life.
  • Do not regret what you have done.
  • Never be jealous.
  • Never let yourself be saddened by a separation.
  • Resentment and complaint are appropriate neither for oneself nor others.
  • Do not let yourself be guided by the feeling of lust or love.
  • In all things, have no preferences.
  • Be indifferent to where you live.
  • Do not pursue the taste of good food.
  • Do not hold on to possessions you no longer need.
  • Do not act following customary beliefs.
  • Do not collect weapons or practice with weapons beyond what is useful.
  • Do not fear death.
  • Do not seek to possess either goods or fiefs for your old age.
  • Respect Buddha and the gods without counting on their help.
  • You may abandon your own body but you must preserve your honor.
  • Never stray from the way.

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