Yoshida Shoin A Word Every Day
Inspiring Analects to Encourage the Spirit
by Kawaguchi Masaaki

Our teacher Yoshida Shoin once wrote, “Disorder is not war, peace is not abundance (of wealth). Lords being lords, vassals being vassals. Father being fathers, children being children. All under heaven is right.” (ref. this book, January 6th) Our teacher, furthermore, finished by continuing “Still yet, is this age a time of peace or is it an generation of disorder? Consider it closely: you should know this.”
So, to understand this saying as an individual person, to build upon this base taught by our teacher Shoin: That is filial piety. In the (book) Mencius T’ang Wan Kung Upper Volume Chapter 4, filial piety is protecting as a person the five ways, specifically, fushi no shin (the affection between parent and child), kunshin no gi (the courtesy between lord and vassal), fuufu no betsu (the distrinction between husband and wife), chouyou no jo (the ranking between the old and young), Houyuu no shin (the fidelity between companions).
In the 60 years after the war, we Japanese have been determined to have a peaceful and “abundant” world, and we have pushed forward into a world of liberty and freedom. The result, with certainty, has carried us to a life of abundance to the degree never seen by history. Also, we have received liberty and freedom. However, with this on one hand, it is the truth that people, when watching the news everyday about our country’s current condition, having the thought that this is unbearable and feeling that something is wrong, are increasingly beginning to earnestly search for some support.
So, what is the primary cause? There is no need to say. I’ve thought about this thing that modern Japanese have. We Japanese, as individual human beings, our values have become strange. In this age, 150 years later, studying Shoin points out frankly the “disorder times” of our country currently and the alarm bells that cry are by no means few. This, now, without reflecting on mine own limited ability, is the reason for undertaking this book.
Our teacher Shoin’s words, even one person can somehow light a lamp in the hearts of many people. As a single person who has studied the teacher, it is the wish from the bottom of my heart to resusitatate a wholesome nation of Japan.
Finally, upon writing this book, I would like to dedicate gratitude to President Katsuo Hideaki of Chichi Publishing, Sir Ookoshi Masahiro who kindly oversaw this project personally, and the many other people from whom I gratefully received guidance and cooperation. Among these, I especially have no words of gratitude enough for Sugihara Hiroshi, a student from when I was at the Yamaguchi Prefectural Ubeshi High School, currently the Superintendent of Educational Guidance at the Yamaguchi Prefecture Board of Education. In truth, I was freshly moved that while having a busy job, you made time even during your days off to give me guidance. That I could again receive instruction at the end of the teaching career fills this ungraceful author with joy.
Written November First, the Eighteenth Year of Heisei
The University of Human Enviroments Kawaguchi Masaaki


人間環境大学 川口雅昭