“A BLACK BELT IS A WHITE BELT THAT NEVER GAVE UP”

THE FISHERMAN AND THE SAMURAI

By Richard Kim. “The Weaponless Warriors”, 1974. Ohara Publications, USA.
Once upon a time a long time ago during the reign of the Tokugawa Shogunate, a samurai set out on an errand. Precisely one year ago to the day he had lent 10 koku to a fisherman in a small coastal village nearby, and today was the day the fisherman had promised he would repay the debt. 

Haga clic aquí para saber más

The samurai arrived in the village at noon and upon inquiring at the fisherman’s home he was told by the fisherman’s wife that he would find the man down at his boat working on his nets. Upon seeing the samurai coming up the beach the fisherman threw himself to the ground and bowed his head to the sand. “Get up,” said the samurai, “As agreed it has been one year and I have come to collect the money you owe me”. “I have not forgotten my debt to you,” said the fisherman, who now stood but with his head still bowed, “but it has been a very bad year for me and I regret that I do not have the money I owe you”. Hearing this the samurai, who was not a man known for his patience, flushed with anger and quickly drew his sword, preparing to kill the fisherman then and there. “Why should I not simply slay you instead” shouted the samurai as he raised the deadly blade above his head. Fearing that his life was at and end and having nothing to lose the fisherman boldly spoke out. “For some time now I have been studying martial arts” he replied, “and one of the lessons that my master teaches is never to strike when you are angry”. “I beg you, ” said the fisherman, “give me one more year to pay you what I owe”. Thinking about what the fisherman had just said the samurai slowly lowered his sword. “Your master is wise,” said the samurai, “as a student of the art of the sword I too have heard that lesson many times, but sometimes I get so angry I act without thinking”. Putting away his sword the samurai spoke in a voice that was used to being obeyed. “You shall have another year to repay your debt to me,” he said, “but when I return if you do not have all the money you owe me I shall not hesitate to take your life instead” and without another word, he turned and walked away. Having left the village later than he intended to it was already dark by the time the samurai arrived home. Seeing no lights on in the house he crept in quietly not wishing to wake the servants or his wife. As he entered his bedchamber he notices that there were two persons lying on his futon, one he recognized as his wife and the other from their clothing was unmistakeably another samurai. Swiftly he drew his sword and as his anger quickly grew he moved in to slay them both. Just then, as he was about to strike, the fisherman’s words came back to him, “never strike when you are angry”. This time I shall follow the lesson he thought to himself, pausing he took a deep breath and tried to relax, then on purpose he made a loud noise. Hearing the sound both his wife and the stranger immediately woke up and when his wife had lit a candle he found himself face to face with his wife and his mother who had dressed up in his clothes and another set of swords. “What is the meaning of this” he demanded, “I almost slew you both”. His wife quickly explained that when he had not returned by night fall they decided to dress his mother up in his clothes so that in the event that an intruder entered the home they would be frightened off at the sight of a samurai in the house. That moment the samurai realized that his habit of “striking without thinking” had almost cost him the life of his wife and his mother. One year later the samurai again walked down the same beach towards the fisherman. After exchanging the proper formal greetings the fisherman said, “It has been an excellent year my Lord, here is all the money I owe you as promised, and with interest”. “Keep your money” replied the samurai, “you do not know it, but your debt was paid to me long ago”

EL SAMURAI Y EL PESCADOR

Por Richard Kim. “The Weaponless Warriors”, 1974. Ohara Publications, USA.
Durante la ocupación Satsuma de Okinawa, un Samurai japonés que le había prestado dinero a un pescador, hizo un viaje para recolectarlo a la provincia Itoman, donde vivía el pescador. No siéndole posible pagar, el pobre pescador huyó y trató de esconderse del Samurai, que era famoso por ser corto de genio. El Samurai fue a su hogar y al no

Haga clic aquí para saber más

encontrarlo ahí, lo buscó por todo el pueblo. A medida que se daba cuenta que no lo encontraba se volvió furioso. Finalmente, al atardecer, lo encontró bajo un barranco que lo escondía de la vista. En su enojo, desenvainó su espada y dijo: “Qué tienes para decirme”, le gritó. El pescador replicó, “Antes que me mate, me gustaría decir algo. Humildemente le pido esa posibilidad.” El Samurai dijo, “Ingrato! Te presto dinero cuando lo necesitas y te doy un año para pagarme y me retribuyes de esta manera. Habla antes que cambie de parecer.” “Lo siento”, dijo el pescador. “Lo que quería decir era ésto. Acabo de comenzar el aprendizaje del arte de la mano vacía y la primera cosa que he aprendido es el precepto: ‘Si alzas tu mano, restringe tu temperamento; si tu temperamento se alza, restringe tu mano.” El Samurai quedó anonadado al escuchar esto de los labios de un simple pescador. Envainó su espada y dijo: “Bueno, tienes razón. Pero acuérdate de esto, volveré en un año a partir de hoy, y será mejor que tengas el dinero.” Y se fue. Había anochecido cuando el Samurai llegó a su casa y, como era costumbre, estaba a punto de anunciar su regreso, se vio sorprendido por un haz de luz que provenía de su pieza, a través de la puerta entreabierta. Afinó su ojo y pudo ver a su esposa tendida durmiendo y el contorno impreciso de alguien que dormía a su lado. Muy sorprendido y explotando de ira se dio cuenta de que era un samurai! Sacó su espada y sigilosamente se acercó a la puerta de su pieza. Levantó su espada preparándose para atacar a través de la puerta, cuando se acordó de las palabras del pescador: “Si tu mano se alza, restringe tu temperamento; si tu temperamento se alza restringe tu mano.” Volvió a la entrada y dijo en voz alta. “He vuelto”. Su esposa se levantó, abriendo la puerta salió junto con la madre del Samurai para saludarlo. La madre vestida con ropas de él. Se había puesto ropas de Samurai para ahuyentar intrusos durante su ausencia. El año pasó rápidamente y el día del cobro llegó. El Samurai hizo nuevamente el largo viaje. El pescador lo estaba esperando. Apenas vio al Samurai, este salió corriendo y le dijo: “He tenido un buen año. Aquí está lo que le debo y además los intereses. No sé cómo darle las gracias!” El Samurai puso su mano sobre el hombro del pescador y dijo: “Quédate con tu dinero. No me debes nada. Soy yo el que está en deuda”
“Every man who has achieved mastery in some art, reveals it in all actions”

SAMURAI MAXIM

“Todo hombre que ha alcanzado la maestría en algún arte, lo revela en todas sus acciones”

MÁXIMA SAMURAI

THE OLD MASTER

On that day the instructor introduced his students to his old Sensei. The Master an elderly person, smiling, greeted them with sympathy. One by one, the students went by to ask the old Master to teach them some of their favorite techniques. A tall young man, who had

Haga clic aquí para saber más

begun his practice a short time ago, asked the master to show him a technique. The old Sensei suddenly tensed his muscles and with a quick, steady and precise movement performed the technique. The disciple was surprised. Shortly afterward it was the turn of the most advanced student of the dojo, who asked the teacher to perform the same technique. The old Sensei performed the technique perfectly, but almost without force. Finally, they allowed the entrance to some followers of the style that had remained outside the dojo, one of them asked the Sensei to realize the same technique. To his surprise, Elder Sensei said: “Please ask me for another easier technique, I am too old to do those things. At the end of the session, the instructor and his old Sensei talked alone in the dojo. “I do not understand,” said the instructor, “why you have given so many different answers to the same technique. The old Master smiled and said: One of them just started his practice, it’s good to cheer him on his way, he’s going to be very tough, with flashy techniques so he knows what he will be able to accomplish if he strives. The next one was already an advanced student, he did not need so much the technique in itself, that already knows and it practiced it to him enough, but to see me realize it by the simple fact of seeing me, although already old and tired. The latter only sees us from the outside, he is just a curious person who does not have the discipline or the interest of the practice, I am not going to teach him something of such importance.

EL VIEJO MAESTRO

Ese día el instructor presentó a sus alumnos a su viejo Sensei. El Maestro una persona de avanzada edad, sonriente, los saludó con simpatía. Uno a uno, los alumnos fueron pasando para pedirle al anciano Maestro que les enseñara alguna de sus técnicas

Haga clic aquí para saber más

preferidas. Un joven alto, que había iniciado su práctica hacía poco tiempo, le pidió al maestro le mostrara una técnica. El anciano Sensei, de repente, tensó sus múscuos y con un movimiento rápido, firme y preciso realizó la técnica. El discípulo se quedó sorprendido. Poco después le tocó el turno al alumno más avanzado del dojo, que le pidió al maestro realizara la misma técnica. El anciano, realizó la técnica de manera perfecta, pero casi sin fuerza. Finalmente, permitieron la entrada a algunos seguidores del estilo que habían permanecido fuera del dojo, uno de ellos le pidió al maestro que realizara la misma técnica. Para su sorpresa el anciano Sensei dijo: “Por favor, pídame otra técnica más fácil, soy ya muy viejo para hacer ésas cosas. Al término de la sesión el instructor y su anciano Sensei platicaban solos en el dojo. “No entiendo” -dijo el instructor- por qué has dado tan diferentes respuestas para la misma técnica. El anciano Maestro sonrió y le dijo: Uno de ellos acaba de empezar su práctica, es bueno animarle en su camino, que va a ser muy duro, con llamativas técnicas para que sepa lo que será capaz de lograr si se esfuerza. El siguiente ya era un alumno avanzado, no necesitaba tanto la técnica en sí, que ya la conoce y la ha practicado sobradamente, sino el verme realizarla por el mero hecho de verme a mí, aunque ya esté viejo y cansado. El último solamente nos ve desde el exterior, es sólo un curioso que no tiene la disciplina ni el interés de la práctica, no voy a enseñarle algo de tanta importancia. 

We are all just passing by in this life. We come to watch, to learn, to grow, to love and then go back home.
Australian Aboriginal Proverb.

 

Todos estamos de paso en esta vida, Hemos venido a observar, aprender, crecer, amar y volvera casa.
Proverbio aborigen australiano.

 

 

What our members say