What is Bushido?
Bushido is the unwritten code of morals and principles developed by the Japanese Samurai as early as the 16th century. Its literal translation means "way of the warrior" and consists of 8 core virtues that the samurai were expected to uphold. We believe these principles are more important than ever, and should be the benchmark for all people to attain.
To make the connection we need to unpack the Bushido code and see how it might be applicable in our lives today.
The 8 Virtues
- Justice - To be fair and treat others equitably the way you would want to be treated. This requires one to be introspective and practice reflecting on the choices we make on a daily basis. It is also the building block on which Bushido rests.
- Courage - To act without fear of failure. To proceed in the face of pain or grief. Life is challenging and it takes courage to face the daily opposition and struggle. The great Roman philosopher Seneca once said, “sometimes even to live is an act of courage”. Sometimes it can feel as if the universe is working against you, but with courage one can overcome any obstacle.
- Compassion - To show kindness, care, and a willingness to help others in need even when they deserve it the least. Compassion is at the core of what makes us human. “The purpose of human life is to serve and to show compassion and the will to help others” Albert Schweitzer.
- Respect - To admire someone or something for their abilities, qualities, or achievements. It also means that you acknowledge your regard for the experiences and feelings of others. Respect and politeness should be the default expression of regard for the feelings of others.
- Integrity - To be honest, dependable, and morally righteous. The word of a person has great value, but the value of those words lessens over time as each lie or failed promise builds. Seek to remain honest in how you speak so that when you speak, others know you’re not only telling the truth, but also that they can count on you following through.
- Honor - To be held in high regard. It is a representation of who you are as a person. It is your word, your actions, and a vivid consciousness of personal dignity and worth. To live honorably is a goal every man should strive for.
- Loyalty - To support or allegiance to a person, place or thing. To be loyal is a sign of brotherhood and should be viewed as a rare commodity. Blind loyalty is a sign of a fool and should be avoided at all costs.
- Discipline - To train oneself to obey rules or a code of behavior. It is one of the most important virtues to perfect, but also one of the most difficult. All good things in life are the result of discipline and self-control.
Why this is important today
Our current political and socio-economic landscape has never been more divisive. In the last couple years we have seen the rise of bigotry, hate, fear, white nationalists, and the decline of tolerance, unity, and belonging. As a result of this extreme polarization, more men are feeling lost, left behind, or pushed to the sides.
Whether at home, in the workplace, or just out in public, these virtues can serve as a guide for all men who want to to live life with respect, honor, and dignity.