The Five Principles of Water

Sato Issai Sensei (1772-1859) was the head teacher at the High Academy of Confucianism Studies. He taught and educated Japanese leaders, and even wrote a few books considered compulsory books for a leader.
Issai Sensei counts the five principles of water:

  1. Water moves – thus moving other things.
  2. Water always looks for a way to progress, and does not rest.
  3. Water – upon coming across an obstacle, is able to concentrate its power, and make it a thousand times stronger.
  4. Water can gracefully clean others filth, and contain within itself both what is clean and what is filthy.
  5. Water fills the huge oceans, turns into mist, into raindrops, it turns to snow, to hail. When it freezes, it becomes a clear mirror. It does all this, without losing its nature.
  6. The founder of Aikido used to say: “Learn from the laws of nature”.

Sato Sensei describes the principles of water, and invites us to check within ourselves: What inspiration do we get from water? Assuming it is difficult to implement all five of the principles, which principle would you like to implement most yourself?

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