March 14, 2022

Advice from a samurai

Japanese tea set up with tea master figurines

It happened a long, long time ago in Japan. A man ran a popular tea shop and was a master of the tea ceremony. People came from far and wide to experience the way he made tea for them.

One day a rather belligerent soldier was passing through and after an altercation, challenged the tea master to a fight.

The tea master was no swordsman and was in despair as honour demanded that he show up the next morning to meet the soldier, and fight. He turned to an old samurai warrior sitting quietly in the corner and asked what to do.

The samurai thought for a moment and then said, “When you do the tea ceremony, you are totally focussed and yet totally calm. Tomorrow morning, raise your sword above your head and adopt that same focussed calm as when you make tea for your customers.”

The next morning, the tea master did as he had been advised, and waited. The soldier stopped and stared… and then bowed and apologised and walked away.

What does this story mean to you?

How can you use what it means?

One way you could consider this story is that it is about states, both of the tea master and the soldier, and how they each created states within themselves and the other.

My best wishes, Paul

Paul Matthews

CEO and Founder of People Alchemy

share this article:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

related posts

Do you feel important?

"It's so simple, yet makes such a difference. Pretend that every single person you meet has a sign around his or her neck that says, ...
Read More
man lying on grass under sky, thinking...

You probably already know this

Changing who you are will change – when you change what you think. Changing what you think... Can you do that?
Read More
Headshot of Paul Matthews

TJ interviews: L&D strategist, author and speaker Paul Matthews

Today is the 25th anniversary of People Alchemy: Jo interviews founder and CEO Paul Matthews
Read More
People Alchemy 25th anniversary badge on rainbow coloured background

My 25 Years in Learning & Development

This week is the 25th anniversary of me leaving corporate land, starting People Alchemy and setting out on my own in the world of L&D...
Read More

search blog

Get your free weekly tip

You agree that we can keep a record of your details, and send you other occasional offers. See our Privacy Policy