The Resolve of Yi Yin

“If he has the resolve of Yi Yin, then it will be acceptable,” was once said to Mencius.This phrase came to a finish. Yi Yin’s resolve is merely distress over the state of your country, distress over the condition of your people. It is not having, even slightly, a selfish heart.
The Second Year of Ansei, the 29th of December. “Lecture Notes”

13日伊尹の志あれば
孟子曾て言あり、伊尹の志あれば可なりと。一語已に尽くせり。伊尹の志は国家を憂ひ生民を憂ふるのみにて、一点の私心あるに非ず。
安政二年十二月二十日「講孟劄記」

Here Right Now

A gentleman possessing resolve, surely must act with strength and devote all his mind and heart to dealing with what is here right now. He must not give up, nor vainly fall into personal despair.
The Fourth Year of Ansei, The 17th of April. “Reply to Oguni Gouzou”

9日ここに処する
有志の士、力を致し心を竭し、当にここに処することあるべし、徒らに自ら悲蹙して已むべからず。
安政四年十七日「小国剛蔵に復す」

Those with Resolve

If it cannot be done in a month, then we should try to accomplish it in two months. If it cannot be done in two months, we should try to accomplish it in 100 days. If it cannot be done no matter how long we try, we musn’t give up until it is accomplished.
The Fourth Year of Ansei, The Third of Intercalendary May. “Notes for Students.”

21日輟めざるなり
一月にして能くせずんば、即ち両月にして之れを為さん。両月にして能くせずんば、即ち百日にして之れを為さん。之れを為して成らずんば輟めざるなり。
安政四年閏五月三日「諸生に示す」

Your Individual Resolve

Your personal and individual resolve will be rewarded with great gratitude from our Imperial country, and it is your duty as knight of a military family. This resolve cannot be altered, even in death.
The Third Year of Ansei, After August. “Lecture Notes on the Complete Book of Military Science.”

16日独り自ら志す所は
独り自ら志す所は皇国の大恩に報い、武門武士の職分を勤むるにあり。此の志は死すと雖も吾れ敢へて変ぜず。
安政三年八月以降「武教全書講録」

Men Born into this World

Great men who are born into this world will be esteemed for standing by their resolve grandly.
The Fourth Year of Ansei, The Third of October. “Explanation of the guest about the name, Saneyuki.”

5日大丈夫斯の世に生れては
大丈夫斯の世に生れては、志を立つること高大なるを尊ぶ。
安政四年十月三日「実之、字は賓卿の説」

Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff

You should save your energy from small matter. Having done this, you should devote yourself wholly to your resolve. If you do this, new strategies and heroic ideas will come to you.
The Fourth Year of Kaei, The 21st of April. “To my Brother.”

23日事省くべく
事省くべく、事省いて而して志専らにすべし。志専らならば則ち奇策雄論往々将に得る所あらんとす。
嘉永四年四月二十一日「阿兄に与ふ」

Faithful Until the Last Years

When a country is strong and her power flourishes, everyone strives with sincerity. When a country is weak and her power wanes, people’s resolve is altered, they surrender to the enemy, and those who would sell their own lords out are not few. For this reason, unless one has those who are faithful until the last years of life, isn’t any amount of wits, smarts, knowledge, or skills insufficient compared to respect? Those faithful to bright lords are not rare, but those faithful to dim lords are truly faithful.
The Second Year of Ansei, The Twelfth of November. “Minutes of the Head Lecturer.”

1日晩節を全うするに非ざれば
国強く勢盛んなる時は、孰れも忠勤を励むものあり。国衰へ勢去るに至りては、志を変じ敵に降り主を売る類寡からず。故に人は晩節を全うするに非ざれば、何程才知学芸ありと雖も、亦何ぞ尊ぶに足らんや。明主に忠あるは珍しからず、暗主に忠なるこそ真忠なれ。
安政二年十一月十二日「講孟箚記」

Magnanimous Spirit ②

This spirit is firm, not burned away by fire nor washed away by water. It stands at the center of a loyal retainer’s integrity; even if the head is decapitated, even if the body is killed, its faithfulness does not change in the end. Even when provided with a high rank and a fat stipend, even when hearing the sexy voice of a beautiful woman, on these occasions too it is not displaced in the end. Again, is this not strong? Gold and iron are said to be strong, but they should be melted by a raging fire. Jewels and stones are said to be strong, but they should be broken by an iron chisel. Only this spirit is not this way. Throughout heaven and earth, through all of time, it is a single existence beyond shape. Could there be anything stronger? As the form and pattern of this spirit is immense and strong, the way to cultivate this magnanimous spirit is to cultivate it straightly without hindering it, in other words, upon having that resolve one has the duty of refraining from doing violence against that spirit. Having that resolve is a matter of never letting one’s resolve gained by studying to slack for even a moment. The strongest prohibition of studying is to start and stop. In other words, if one continuously starts and stops, in the end nothing will be realized. For this reason, never letting this resolve slacken even for a moment is having that resolve, it is said.
The Second Year of Ansei, The 26th of July. “Minutes of the Head Lecturer.”

16日浩然の気②
此の気の凝る所、火にも焼けず水にも流れず。中心義士の節操を立つる、頭に刎ねられても、腰は斬られても、操は遂に変ぜず。高官厚禄を与へても、美女淫声を陳ねても、節は遂に換えず。亦剛ならずや。凡そ金鉄剛と云へども烈火以て溶かすべし。玉石堅と雖も鉄鑿以て砕くべし。唯だ此の気独り然らず。天地に通じ古今を貫き、形骸の外に於て独り存するもの、剛の至りに非ずや。至大至剛は気の形状模様にして、直を以て養ひて害することなきは、即ち其の志を持して其の気を暴ふなきの義にして、浩然の気を養ふの道なり。其の志を持すと云ふは、我が聖賢を学ばんとするの志を持ち詰めて片時も緩がせなくすることなり。学問の大禁忌は作輟なり。或は作し或は輟むることありては遂に成就することなし。故に片時も此の志を緩がせなくするを、其の志を持すと云ふ。
安政二年七月二十六日「講孟箚記」

If your Resolve is Not Completely Set

If your resolve is not completely set, you cannot prosper in your work.
The Second Year of Ansei, The 22nd Day of August. “A Letter to Send Kosuke to Study in Edo.”

6日志専らならずんば
志専らならずんば、業盛なること能はず。
安政二年八月二十二日「古助の江戸に遊学するを送る序」

The Azure Sky

Although yellow mist might stifle the four directions, the azure sky still stretches above it.
The Second Year of Ansei. “Manuscript of the 52nd Year.”

29日蒼天なきに非ず
黄霧四塞すと雖も、上に蒼天なきに非ず。
安政二年「乙卯稿」