Life lessons from ‘The Art of Peace’

Warrior with sword facing a flowing waterfall.
Warrior with sword facing a flowing waterfall.
Photo by Sachith Ravishka Kodikara from Pexels

What does it mean to be truly free?

Master martial artist Morihei Ueshiba once advised, “Those who are possessed by nothing possess everything.”

Many of us live in liberated countries, yet we find ourselves, prisoners, of our circumstances. The shackles that we carry are often self-inflicted. No one has imposed them on us. We’ve set them on ourselves. How then do we release ourselves from these chains?

The way to freedom is found in Peace. More accurately, in training ourselves to become warriors in “The Art of Peace.”

What is the Art of Peace?

“When life is victorious, there…

‘The Obstacle Is The Way’ by Ryan Holiday

Photo by Kristopher Roller on Unsplash

Nearly two thousand years ago, a man whom history considers the last of Rome’s “Five Good Emperors” performed his daily ritual, which was to write. Regardless of the quotidian demands of being a ruler and his reign afflicted by a long history of war, plague, and economic struggle, he managed to create time for daily reflection in what is now known to us as the Meditations of Marcus Aurelius. In “Book 5” of the twelve that he wrote this Cesar reminded himself about how to combat obstacles: “The impediment to action advances action. …

Three key insights to improving our hearts and minds

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Hagakure (“In the Shadow of Leaves”’) takes us through one man’s ruminations on the ideals in the Way of the Samurai. Rather than a narrative book, it is instead an extensive collection of commentaries filled with anecdotes, quotes, observations & reflections frequently told in no particular sequence.

In this version, the translator William Scott Wilson extracts three hundred of the over thirteen hundred available entries. After Tsunetomo’s death, Hagakure was kept secret by the Nabeshima clan for many years, and over time the original text was lost to us. What remains is a few slightly modified versions of the original…

Photo by Zachary Kadolph on Unsplash

The concept that is communicated throughout Ego is the Enemy is we are consistently going through three cycles in life. We are either aspiring, succeeding, or failing. And regardless of where we find ourselves in those cycles ego is the ultimate antagonist impeding us from attaining the goals we seek and becoming the best possible versions of ourselves.

Ryan Holiday strategically combines Stoic principles and strategies with historical and modern stories to illustrate how individuals from all walks of life managed to master their egos to achieve what they sought in life. He also provides cautionary tales from these figures.

Ally Edmondson

The Pursuit of Mastery. SaaS Product Trainer & End User Support Manager @D2L. 📍K-W, Canada

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