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The Unfettered Mind

Writings from a Zen Master to a Master Swordsman
Sprecher: Roger Clark
Spieldauer: 2 Std. und 38 Min.
5 out of 5 stars (4 Bewertungen)

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This classic samurai-era text fused Japanese swordsmanship with Zen and influenced the direction that the art has taken ever since. Written by the 17th-century Zen master Takuan Soho (1573-1645), The Unfettered Mind is a book of advice on swordsmanship and the cultivation of right mind and intention. It was written as a guide for the samurai Yagyu Munenori, who was a great swordsman and rival to the legendary Miyamoto Musashi. Takuan was a giant in the history of Zen; he was also a gardener, calligrapher, poet, author, adviser to samurai and shoguns, and a pivotal figure in Zen painting. He was known for his brilliance and acerbic wit. In these succinct and pointed essays, Takuan is concerned primarily with understanding and refining the mind - both generally and when faced with conflict. The Unfettered Mind was a major influence on the classic manifestos on swordsmanship that came after it, including Miyamoto Musashi's Book of Five Rings and Yagyu Munenori's Life-Giving Sword.

©1986, 2002 William Scott Wilson (P)2014 Audible Inc.

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Awesome book

7 stars. I keep inventing new rating levels but that's how I feel about the book right now.

Some of the key notions are overlapping with Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle. Mainly on the point that focus is to be on the present moment. But Takuan goes much much further. The feeling from The Unfettered Mind is very similar to what you get from Tao Te Ching by Laozi - the depth is stunning.

I wrote some quotes below but they are absolutely not representative. The deep part is so sophisticated that I can't at the moment select just few key sentences or even put a summary in my own words.

The book is amazing.

Quotes:

No mind doesn’t fix itself. It wonders through the entire body and extend throughout the entire self.

When there is no stopping place it is called no mind. When it stops it means there is something in the mind.

When there is nothing in the mind it is called a mind of No Mind.

When this No Mind is well developed the mind does not stop on one thing, nor does it lack any one thing. It is like water overflowing and it exists within itself, it appears appropriately when facing a time of need.

The mind that becomes fixed and stops in one place doesn’t function freely. Similarly the wheels of a car turns around because they are not rigidly in place, if they were to stick tight they would not go around. The mind is also something which does not function if it becomes attached to a single situation.

The effects of tightening up on your mind is to make it unfree. Bringing the mind under control is the thing done only in the beginning.

Throw a ball in a swift current and it will never stop. That how your mind should be.

Cut the edge between before and after.That means one should cut through the interval between past and present.

Separate yourself from discrimination of figuring things out.

Bajo has a body like a cow’s, head like a man and it is an animal like no other known. It eats dreams and misfortunes. And in China they draw a picture of it to put up at the house entrance or to hand in the inner pillars. In short putting up of an illustration of bajo is for the purpose of avoiding misfortune.