Sato Issai Sensei (1772-1859) was the head teacher at the High Academy of Confucianism Studies. He taught and educated Japanese leaders, and even wrote a few books considered compulsory books for a leader.
Issai Sensei counts the five principles of water:
- Water moves – thus moving other things.
- Water always looks for a way to progress, and does not rest.
- Water – upon coming across an obstacle, is able to concentrate its power, and make it a thousand times stronger.
- Water can gracefully clean others filth, and contain within itself both what is clean and what is filthy.
- Water fills the huge oceans, turns into mist, into raindrops, it turns to snow, to hail. When it freezes, it becomes a clear mirror. It does all this, without losing its nature.
- The founder of Aikido used to say: "Learn from the laws of nature".
Sato Sensei describes the principles of water, and invites us to check within ourselves: What inspiration do we get from water? Assuming it is difficult to implement all five of the principles, which principle would you like to implement most yourself?