About the Book
Book Description: The Courage of a Samurai is a Japanese American's journey into bushido, the samurai's code of ethics. Each chapter features a timeless message about Japanese and Japanese Americans who applied the principles of courage, integrity, benevolence, respect, honesty, honor, and loyalty to overcome life's challenges, and emerge stronger individuals. The Courage of a Samurai provides the reader a look ‘inside’ this ancient code through the lives of inspiring individuals.Why did Chiune Sugihara, aka the Japanese Schindler, save the lives of Polish and Lithuanian Jews during World War II against the orders of the Japanese and Lithuanian governments? Understand the meaning of Honor in Saigo Takamori’s, aka The Last Samurai, determination to preserve the samurai’s way of life. Learn why “Go for Broke!” was the motto of the famous World War II all-Nisei 100th/442ndRCT, and discover why this simple motto reflects the essence of the way of the warrior.
The Code of Bushido can guide us through the challenges we all face, and inspire us to live a life of honor, courage, and integrity in today’s fast-paced and changing world. Sharpen your sword, and let the journey begin!
"Bushido might be a Japanese culture, but I now realize that many of its aspects have universal values and appeals. I recommend this book to anyone who seeks inspirations to be a better person who can think beyond his/her personal and cultural boundaries." - Amazon Review
"Inspiring and clear. Wonderful stories that relate basic life principles in a way anyone can enjoy and follow." - Amazon Review
"A very special and thoughtfully written book, that is a 'must read', for all, who want to reflect on their lives and learn how to make it better......especially, knowing there are those who have gone before us, making sacrifices we may have forgotten or fail to recognize." - Amazon Review
"Ms. Whaley's book is one of the most inspirational that I ever read. She takes the story of the brave Japanese American soldiers of World War II, and uses their story to inspire her modern readers. I could not put the book down! It was gripping, passionate, intense, and beautiful all at the same time! I recommend this to anyone and everyone." - Chris Brusatte
Read an Excerpt
The feudal and military modes of this code became ingrained in not only the warrior, but in the society. All aspects of life, including personal responsibility, familial relations, public duties, education, finance, and ethics became embraced through the martial spirit of bushido.
There is no greater symbol of the samurai warrior and the martial code he lived by than his sword. The sword was considered the soul of the samurai. What makes this sword unique is its forging process. The finest materials were combined and repeatedly fired, folded, and hammered. The many repetitions of this process produced a blade with a soft, non brittle center core surrounded by a thin layer of hard steel. A blade strong and resilient— perfect for the samurai sword. As a final procedure, the master sword smith applied a layer of special adhesive clay to the blade, leaving only the edge exposed. When polished this pattern provided a unique look and character for the sword.
The samurai sword is a masterpiece of strength, flexibility and beauty: a true representation of the samurai legacy. In many ways this unique weapon symbolizes not only the samurai, but also the Japanese society that resulted. The properties of strength combined with flexibility became witness to the world following the devastating earthquake and tsunami of March 11, 2011. The world saw a people bend, but not break; a people imbued with human toughness, resolve to carry on, and do what needed to be done without complaint or chaos; a people who embraced moral and ethical wisdom, and put it into action. This can be summed up in the expression: Do the right thing all the time. Evident even today, this philosophy is ingrained into
all aspects of Japanese life and is the samurais’ legacy.
The sword can also be seen as a metaphor for life. As the materials are repeatedly heated, hammered, and folded, the dross is removed, and the elemental properties are combined and enhanced in the fiery furnace, creating a stronger and more flexible material.
In life we often encounter our own ‘fiery furnace(s)’ or challenges. These tend to mold our character, ultimately producing a stronger, wiser, and more flexible you.
The world’s people witnessed Japan arising from a war-torn country into an economic superpower, and they were astonished. Many businesses and organizations desired to study and emulate the concepts behind the Japanese business model; for example kaizen, which means constant improvement. In Japanese businesses and organizations, there is more of a team atmosphere than in western society. The Japanese mindset is toward the good of all and more of a group mentality.
About the Author: Lori Tsugawa Whaley
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