Two swordsmen appear in my Samurai Tarot cards for today, and one of them, the Knight of Swords, is represented by Miyamoto Musashi, one of the most famous swordsmen of all time. If you don’t know Musashi’s story, look it up — it’s a story of persistently facing and defeating the odds, of fierce belief in oneself, of courage to the point of madness. There are times when it is completely mad to try to defeat the odds, when the odds are so overwhelmingly against us that it seems like the prudent thing to do would be to cut our losses.
But there are also times when retreat is not an option.
Even if other people think that it is.
Those are the times when all we really have to depend on is ourselves and our own absolute unswerving 100 percent commitment.
To the people who want us to turn back at such times, the story is a story of certain defeat and failure, or maybe certain death or at least ruin.
For those who have the courage to face certain defeat, the story itself is not about defeat — it’s about having a strong spirit.
A spirit so strong that it sends chills down your spine to see it.
In the face of a spirit that strong, even the fiercest opponents will tend to quail. Nobody wants to fight the person who continues to fight even when it is madness to do so. That strong spirit and courage IN AND OF ITSELF can change the odds, and prevail despite them. So remember that.