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Dokkōdō, or The Way of Walking Alone

Dokkōdō, or The Way of Walking Alone

A week before he died, Musashi wrote the Dokkōdō, or The Way of Walking Alone.

It consisted of 21 rules and provided a roadmap to live life by.

The rules are strict and harsh, but honest and powerful


310 reads

1. Accept everything just the way it is

For generations, men have been known for dominance and control.

However, not everything can be controlled.

Flexibility is a key aspect in an even-tempered man.


260 reads

2. Do not seek pleasure for its own sake

The search for pleasure is a dangerous adventure.

Along the way, many men have gotten lost in pleasure.

Alcohol, Drugs, Sex

Go into pleasure with you mind aware

Because on the other side of pleasure is pain.


219 reads

3. Do not, under any circumstances, depend on a partial feeling

Go into everything whole-heartedly and non-apologetic.

Mindless actions are typically stupid ones.

Mindless experiences are typically forgettable ones.


226 reads

4. Think lightly of yourself and deeply of the world

Ego blinds and ego destroys.

Go into any experience humble and respectful of your fellow man.


200 reads

5. Be detached from desire your whole life long

I've discussed attachment many times.

The two strongest fears that men typically face is fear of death and fear of missing out. Both are born from attachment.

If you do not control yourself, you will be controlled.


181 reads

6. Do not regret what you have done

Regret and guilt are both useless emotions.

The past cannot be changed and the future cannot be determined.

Focus on the present.

You can't move forward while looking behind.


169 reads

7. Never be jealous

Envy is a bottomless pit of suffering.

There will never be enough and you will never feel like you are enough.

Don't seek to be the best.

Seek to be the best version of yourself.


163 reads

8. Never let yourself be saddened by a separation

We circle back to attachment.

Attachment leads to fear and fear results in pain.

Live fully in the moment because you can't control the future.


163 reads

9. Resentment, complaint are inappropriate for oneself or others

Resentment is typically born from jealousy and greed.

Seek to be the best version of yourself and complain about nothing.

Don't waste energy complain, spend energy doing.


155 reads

10. Do not let yourself be guided by the feeling of lust or love

Lust is a dangerous emotion and many men have sacrificed everything and been ruined by it.

Love is a pure emotion, but a man can be blinded by it.

Maintain awareness.


162 reads

11. In all things have no preferences

Remaining open minded relates to the flexibility we talked about in the first rule.

Bias can be a waste of opportunity in business, love, and learning.


143 reads

12. Be indifferent to where you live

Blind patriotism is antiquated.

Find a region you like with weather that you enjoy and people you get along with.

Plus, all you need is an internet connection to make money these days.


141 reads

13. Do not pursue the taste of good food

Food should be consumed for nutrition.

Taste is secondary.

Man cannot live on ice cream alone.


151 reads

14. Do not hold on to possessions you no longer need

You will never realize how much useless stuff you own and never use until you are packing to move.

Actively declutter.

This goes hand-in-hand with rule 12.


150 reads

15. Do not act following customary beliefs

Learn to think for yourself.

Find your own traditions and rituals.

The majority of people are NPCs so you should take pride in being different.


149 reads

16. Do not collect nor practice with weapons beyond useful

Every man should learn to fight and defend himself and those around him.

However, do not be consumed by it.

And remember, no plan survives the first point of contact.


128 reads

17. Do not fear death.

Attachment again, noticing a pattern?

The greatest irony is that those most afraid of death are also afraid to live.


116 reads

18. Do not seek to possess goods or fiefs for your old age

This is the one that may be more contextual for the time and Musashi's occupation as a wandering samurai.

However, it is still a good point to mention the danger of greed.

There is such thing as too much.


105 reads

19. Respect Buddha and the gods without counting on their help

Regardless of your faith (or lack thereof), respect your fellow man and depend on nothing but yourself.

Men lie and gods don't answer every prayer.


122 reads

20. You may abandon your body but you must preserve your honor

While it is important to never be apologetic, a man must follow his own ethics and values.

To betray one's own ethics is to compromise one's soul.


139 reads

21. Never stray from the Way

Go into everything whole-heartedly and do not stray from your own way.

A man who lies to himself loses the ability to understand the truth.


144 reads



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