2-3 pages of sociological reflection

Write 2-3 pages of sociological reflection.Analyze a reading attached below carefully and write not only a summary but deeply analyzed context in the reflection.The refection should take the form of either a thematic connection between the readings and a discussion of the meaning–how practice is manifest in culture. Also, please reflect on the reading I attached below.Nitobe. Bushido: The Soul of the Samurai
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BUSHIDO
THE SOUL OF JAPAN
BY
INAZO NITOBÉ, A.M., Ph.D.
Author’s Edition, Revised and Enlarged
13th EDITION
1908
DECEMBER, 1904
TO MY BELOVED UNCLE
TOKITOSHI OTA
WHO TAUGHT ME TO REVERE THE PAST
AND
TO ADMIRE THE DEEDS OF THE SAMURAI
I DEDICATE
THIS LITTLE BOOK
—”That way
Over the mountain, which who stands upon,
Is apt to doubt if it be indeed a road;
While if he views it from the waste itself,
Up goes the line there, plain from base to brow,
Not vague, mistakable! What’s a break or two
Seen from the unbroken desert either side?
And then (to bring in fresh philosophy)
What if the breaks themselves should prove at last
The most consummate of contrivances
To train a man’s eye, teach him what is faith?”
—ROBERT BROWNING, Bishop Blougram’s Apology.
“There are, if I may so say, three powerful spirits, which have from time to time, moved on the face of the
waters, and given a predominant impulse to the moral sentiments and energies of mankind. These are the
spirits of liberty, of religion, and of honor.”
BUSHIDO THE SOUL OF JAPAN
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The Project Gutenberg eBook of Bushido, by Inazo NitobÉ, A.M., Ph.D..
—HALLAM, Europe in the Middle Ages.
“Chivalry is itself the poetry of life.”
—SCHLEGEL, Philosophy of History.
PREFACE
About ten years ago, while spending a few days under the hospitable roof of the distinguished Belgian jurist,
the lamented M. de Laveleye, our conversation turned, during one of our rambles, to the subject of religion.
“Do you mean to say,” asked the venerable professor, “that you have no religious instruction in your schools?”
On my replying in the negative he suddenly halted in astonishment, and in a voice which I shall not easily
forget, he repeated “No religion! How do you impart moral education?” The question stunned me at the time. I
could give no ready answer, for the moral precepts I learned in my childhood days, were not given in schools;
and not until I began to analyze the different elements that formed my notions of right and wrong, did I find
that it was Bushido that breathed them into my nostrils.
The direct inception of this little book is due to the frequent queries put by my wife as to the reasons why such
and such ideas and customs prevail in Japan.
In my attempts to give satisfactory replies to M. de Laveleye and to my wife, I found that without
understanding Feudalism and Bushido,[1] the moral ideas of present Japan are a sealed volume.
[1]
Pronounced Boó-shee-doh’. In putting Japanese words and names into English, Hepburn’s rule is followed,
that the vowels should be used as in European languages, and the consonants as in English.
Taking advantage of enforced idleness on account of long illness, I put down in the order now presented to the
public some of the answers given in our household conversation. They consist mainly of what I was taught
and told in my youthful days, when Feudalism was still in force.
Between Lafcadio Hearn and Mrs. Hugh Fraser on one side and Sir Ernest Satow and Professor Chamberlain
on the other, it is indeed discouraging to write anything Japanese in English. The only advantage I have over
them is that I can assume the attitude of a personal defendant, while these distinguished writers are at best
solicitors and attorneys. I have often thought,—”Had I their gift of language, I would present the cause of
Japan in more eloquent terms!” But one who speaks in a borrowed tongue should be thankful if he can just
make himself intelligible.
All through the discourse I have tried to illustrate whatever points I have made with parallel examples from
European history and literature, believing that these will aid in bringing the subject nearer to the
comprehension of foreign readers.
Should any of my allusions to religious subjects and to religious workers be thought slighting, I trust my
attitude towards Christianity itself will not be questioned. It is with ecclesiastical methods and with the forms
which obscure the teachings of Christ, and not with the teachings themselves, that I have little sympathy. I
believe in the religion taught by Him and handed down to us in the New Testament, as well as in the law
TO MY BELOVED UNCLETOKITOSHI OTAWHO TAUGHT ME TO REVERE THE PASTANDTO ADMIRE
2
TH
The Project Gutenberg eBook of Bushido, by Inazo NitobÉ, A.M., Ph.D..
written in the heart. Further, I believe that God hath made a testament which maybe called “old” with every
people and nation,—Gentile or Jew, Christian or Heathen. As to the rest of my theology, I need not impose
upon the patience of the public.
In concluding this preface, I wish to express my thanks to my friend Anna C. Hartshorne for many valuable
suggestions and for the characteristically Japanese design made by her for the cover of this book.
INAZO NITOBE.
Malvern, Pa., Twelfth Month, 1899.
PREFACE
TO THE TENTH AND REVISED EDITION
Since its first publication in Philadelphia, more than six years ago, this little book has had an unexpected
history. The Japanese reprint has passed through eight editions, the present thus being its tenth appearance in
the English language. Simultaneously with this will be issued an American and English edition, through the
publishing-house of Messrs. George H. Putnam’s Sons, of New York.
In the meantime, Bushido has been translated into Mahratti by Mr. Dev of Khandesh, into German by Fräulein
Kaufmann of Hamburg, into Bohemian by Mr. Hora of Chicago, into Polish by the Society of Science and
Life in Lemberg,—although this Polish edition has been censured by the Russian Government. It is now being
rendered into Norwegian and into French. A Chinese translation is under contemplation. A Russian officer,
now a prisoner in Japan, has a manuscript in Russian ready for the press. A part of the volume has been
brought before the Hungarian public and a detailed review, almost amounting to a commentary, has been
published in Japanese. Full scholarly notes for the help of younger students have been compiled by my friend
Mr. H. Sakurai, to whom I also owe much for his aid in other ways.
I have been more than gratified to feel that my humble work has found sympathetic readers in widely
separated circles, showing that the subject matter is of some interest to the world at large. Exceedingly
flattering is the news that has reached me from official sources, that President Roosevelt has done it
undeserved honor by reading it and distributing several dozens of copies among his friends.
In making emendations and additions for the present edition, I have largely confined them to concrete
examples. I still continue to regret, as I indeed have never ceased to do, my inability to add a chapter on Filial
Piety, which is considered one of the two wheels of the chariot of Japanese ethics—Loyalty being the other.
My inability is due rather to my ignorance of the Western sentiment in regard to this particular virtue, than to
ignorance of our own attitude towards it, and I cannot draw comparisons satisfying to my own mind. I hope
one day to enlarge upon this and other topics at some length. All the subjects that are touched upon in these
pages are capable of further amplification and discussion; but I do not now see my way clear to make this
volume larger than it is.
This Preface would be incomplete and unjust, if I were to omit the debt I owe to my wife for her reading of
the proof-sheets, for helpful suggestions, and, above all, for her constant encouragement.
I.N.
PREFACE
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The Project Gutenberg eBook of Bushido, by Inazo NitobÉ, A.M., Ph.D..
Kyoto,
Fifth Month twenty-second, 1905.
CONTENTS
Preface
Preface to the Tenth and Revised Edition
Bushido as an Ethical System
Sources of Bushido
Rectitude or Justice
Courage, the Spirit of Daring and Bearing
Benevolence, the Feeling of Distress
Politeness
Veracity or Truthfulness
Honor
The Duty of Loyalty
Education and Training of a Samurai
Self-Control
The Institutions of Suicide and Redress
The Sword, the Soul of the Samurai
The Training and Position of Woman
The Influence of Bushido
Is Bushido Still Alive?
The Future of Bushido
PREFACETO THE TENTH AND REVISED EDITION
4
The Project Gutenberg eBook of Bushido, by Inazo NitobÉ, A.M., Ph.D..
BUSHIDO AS AN ETHICAL SYSTEM.
Chivalry is a flower no less indigenous to the soil of Japan than its emblem, the cherry blossom; nor is it a
dried-up specimen of an antique virtue preserved in the herbarium of our history. It is still a living object of
power and beauty among us; and if it assumes no tangible shape or form, it not the less scents the moral
atmosphere, and makes us aware that we are still under its potent spell. The conditions of society which
brought it forth and nourished it have long disappeared; but as those far-off stars which once were and are not,
still continue to shed their rays upon us, so the light of chivalry, which was a child of feudalism, still
illuminates our moral path, surviving its mother institution. It is a pleasure to me to reflect upon this subject in
the language of Burke, who uttered the well-known touching eulogy over the neglected bier of its European
prototype.
It argues a sad defect of information concerning the Far East, when so erudite a scholar as Dr. George Miller
did not hesitate to affirm that chivalry, or any other similar institution, has never existed either among the
nations of antiquity or among the modern Orientals.[2] Such ignorance, however, is amply excusable, as the
third edition of the good Doctor’s work appeared the same year that Commodore Perry was knocking at the
portals of our exclusivism. More than a decade later, about the time that our feudalism was in the last throes of
existence, Carl Marx, writing his “Capital,” called the attention of his readers to the peculiar advantage of
studying the social and political institutions of feudalism, as then to be seen in living form only in Japan. I
would likewise invite the Western historical and ethical student to the study of chivalry in the Japan of the
present.
[2]
History Philosophically Illustrated, (3rd Ed. 1853), Vol. II, p. 2.
Enticing as is a historical disquisition on the comparison between European and Japanese feudalism and
chivalry, it is not the purpose of this paper to enter into it at length. My attempt is rather to relate, firstly, the
origin and sources of our chivalry; secondly, its character and teaching; thirdly, its influence among the
masses; and, fourthly, the continuity and permanence of its influence. Of these several points, the first will be
only brief and cursory, or else I should have to take my readers into the devious paths of our national history;
the second will be dwelt upon at greater length, as being most likely to interest students of International Ethics
and Comparative Ethology in our ways of thought and action; and the rest will be dealt with as corollaries.
The Japanese word which I have roughly rendered Chivalry, is, in the original, more expressive than
Horsemanship. Bu-shi-do means literally Military-Knight-Ways—the ways which fighting nobles should
observe in their daily life as well as in their vocation; in a word, the “Precepts of Knighthood,” the noblesse
oblige of the warrior class. Having thus given its literal significance, I may be allowed henceforth to use the
word in the original. The use of the original term is also advisable for this reason, that a teaching so
circumscribed and unique, engendering a cast of mind and character so peculiar, so local, must wear the badge
of its singularity on its face; then, some words have a national timbre so expressive of race characteristics that
the best of translators can do them but scant justice, not to say positive injustice and grievance. Who can
improve by translation what the German “Gemüth” signifies, or who does not feel the difference between the
two words verbally so closely allied as the English gentleman and the French gentilhomme?
Bushido, then, is the code of moral principles which the knights were required or instructed to observe. It is
not a written code; at best it consists of a few maxims handed down from mouth to mouth or coming from the
pen of some well-known warrior or savant. More frequently it is a code unuttered and unwritten, possessing
all the more the powerful sanction of veritable deed, and of a law written on the fleshly tablets of the heart. It
was founded not on the creation of one brain, however able, or on the life of a single personage, however
renowned. It was an organic growth of decades and centuries of military career. It, perhaps, fills the same
BUSHIDO AS AN ETHICAL SYSTEM.
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The Project Gutenberg eBook of Bushido, by Inazo NitobÉ, A.M., Ph.D..
position in the history of ethics that the English Constitution does in political history; yet it has had nothing to
compare with the Magna Charta or the Habeas Corpus Act. True, early in the seventeenth century Military
Statutes (Buké Hatto) were promulgated; but their thirteen short articles were taken up mostly with marriages,
castles, leagues, etc., and didactic regulations were but meagerly touched upon. We cannot, therefore, point
out any definite time and place and say, “Here is its fountain head.” Only as it attains consciousness in the
feudal age, its origin, in respect to time, may be identified with feudalism. But feudalism itself is woven of
many threads, and Bushido shares its intricate nature. As in England the political institutions of feudalism
may be said to date from the Norman Conquest, so we may say that in Japan its rise was simultaneous with
the ascendency of Yoritomo, late in the twelfth century. As, however, in England, we find the social elements
of feudalism far back in the period previous to William the Conqueror, so, too, the germs of feudalism in
Japan had been long existent before the period I have mentioned.
Again, in Japan as in Europe, when feudalism was formally inaugurated, the professional class of warriors
naturally came into prominence. These were known as samurai, meaning literally, like the old English cniht
(knecht, knight), guards or attendants—resembling in character the soldurii whom Caesar mentioned as
existing in Aquitania, or the comitati, who, according to Tacitus, followed Germanic chiefs in his time; or, to
take a still later parallel, the milites medii that one reads about in the history of Mediaeval Europe. A
Sinico-Japanese word Bu-ké or Bu-shi (Fighting Knights) was also adopted in common use. They were a
privileged class, and must originally have been a rough breed who made fighting their vocation. This class
was naturally recruited, in a long period of constant warfare, from the manliest and the most adventurous, and
all the while the process of elimination went on, the timid and the feeble being sorted out, and only “a rude
race, all masculine, with brutish strength,” to borrow Emerson’s phrase, surviving to form families and the
ranks of the samurai. Coming to profess great honor and great privileges, and correspondingly great
responsibilities, they soon felt the need of a common standard of behavior, especially as they were always on
a belligerent footing and belonged to different clans. Just as physicians limit competition among themselves
by professional courtesy, just as lawyers sit in courts of honor in cases of violated etiquette, so must also
warriors possess some resort for final judgment on their misdemeanors.
Fair play in fight! What fertile germs of morality lie in this primitive sense of savagery and childhood. Is it not
the root of all military and civic virtues? We smile (as if we had outgrown it!) at the boyish desire of the small
Britisher, Tom Brown, “to leave behind him the name of a fellow who never bullied a little boy or turned his
back on a big one.” And yet, who does not know that this desire is the corner-stone on which moral structures
of mighty dimensions can be reared? May I not go even so far as to say that the gentlest and most
peace-loving of religions endorses this aspiration? This desire of Tom’s is the basis on which the greatness of
England is largely built, and it will not take us long to discover that Bushido does not stand on a lesser
pedestal. If fighting in itself, be it offensive or defensive, is, as Quakers rightly testify, brutal and wrong, we
can still say with Lessing, “We know from what failings our virtue springs.”[3] “Sneaks” and “cowards” are
epithets of the worst opprobrium to healthy, simple natures. Childhood begins life with these notions, and
knighthood also; but, as life grows larger and its relations many-sided, the early faith seeks sanction from
higher authority and more rational sources for its own justification, satisfaction and development. If military
interests had operated alone, without higher moral support, how far short of chivalry would the ideal of
knighthood have fallen! In Europe, Christianity, interpreted with concessions convenient to chivalry, infused
it nevertheless with spiritual data. “Religion, war and glory were the three souls of a perfect Christian knight,”
says Lamartine. In Japan there were several
BUSHIDO AS AN ETHICAL SYSTEM.
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The Project Gutenberg eBook of Bushido, by Inazo NitobÉ, A.M., Ph.D..
SOURCES OF BUSHIDO,
of which I may begin with Buddhism. It furnished a sense of calm trust in Fate, a quiet submission to the
inevitable, that stoic composure in sight of danger or calamity, that disdain of life and friendliness with death.
A foremost teacher of swordsmanship, when he saw his pupil master the utmost of his art, told him, “Beyond
this my instruction must give way to Zen teaching.” “Zen” is the Japanese equivalent for the Dhyâna, which
“represents human effort to reach through meditation zones of thought beyond the range of verbal
expression.”[4] Its method is contemplation, and its purport, as far as I understand it, to be convinced of a
principle that underlies all phenomena, and, if it can, of the Absolute itself, and thus to put oneself in harmony
with this Absolute. Thus defined, the teaching was more than the dogma of a sect, and whoever attains to the
perception of the Absolute raises himself above mundane things and awakes, “to a new Heaven and a new
Earth.”
[3]
Ruskin was one of the most gentle-hearted and peace loving men that ever lived. Yet he believed in war with
all the fervor of a worshiper of the strenuous life. “When I tell you,” he says in the Crown of Wild Olive, “that
war is the foundation of all the arts, I mean also that it is the foundation of all the high virtues and faculties of
men. It is very strange to me to discover this, and very dreadful, but I saw it to be quite an undeniable fact. * *
* I found in brief, that all great nations learned their truth of word and strength of thought in war; that they
were nourished in war and wasted by peace, taught by war and deceived by peace; trained by war and
betrayed by peace; in a word, that they were born in war and expired in peace.”
[4]
Lafcadio Hearn, Exotics and Retrospectives, p. 84.
What Buddhism failed to give, Shintoism offered in abundance. Such loyalty to the sovereign, such reverence
for ancestral memory, and such filial piety as are not taught by any other creed, were inculcated by the Shinto
doctrines, imparting passivity to the otherwise arrogant character of the samurai. Shinto theology has no place
for the dogma of “original sin.” On the contrary, it believes in the innate goodness and God-like purity of the
human soul, adoring it as the adytum from which divine oracles are proclaimed. Everybody has observed that
the Shinto shrines are conspicuously devoid of objects and instruments of worship, and that a plain mirror
hung in the sanctuary forms the essential part of its furnishing. The presence of this article, is easy to explain:
it typifies the human heart, which, when perfectly placid and clear, reflects the very image of the Deity. When
you stand, therefore, in front of the shrine to worship, you see your own image reflected on its shining surface,
and …
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