EPISODE 36 The 47 Ronin (Part 1)

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“Death poems
Are a delusion. 
You just die.”

— Zen monk Kanzawa Toko

The tale of the 47 Ronin is one of the most renowned revenge tales to ever come out of Japan. It is the subject of countless books, plays, and movies. It is also a story that has ignited never-ending debates. Some people argue that the 47 Ronin were paragons of virtue—perfect embodiments of the loyalty and honor that should be expected from the samurai. They offered the answer to the riddle that was plaguing the samurai at the beginning of the 1700s: what does being a member of a warrior class at a time of enduring peace? Other people instead look at the same story and walk away feeling like the 47 Ronin were violent thugs animated by questionable motives. In this two-part series of History on Fire, we dive deep into legend & history to find answers. 

In this episode:

  • A crash course in Japanese history
  • The transformation of the status of the samurai 
  • The curious institution of seppuku 
  • Ritual disembowelment as a way to say ‘sorry’
  • Death poems 
  • The ‘Kaishakunin’—a pal who would cut your head off to spare you the prolonged agonies of ritual disembowelment 
  • The “Dog Shogun”
  • Asano Naganori: “Given to pleasure in preference of the sober business of government.”
  • The consequences of pulling a blade inside the Shogun’s palace
  • Bonus revenge story: two angry sisters against a samurai

This episode is brought to you by https://www.bluechew.com/, the first chewable with the same FDA-approved active ingredients as Viagra and Cialis.  Visit bluechew.com and get your first shipment FREE (only $ 5 for shipping) when you use the promo code HISTORY.

Today’s episode is supported by “Must Triumph Podcast”—a brilliant podcast by Sam Yang on the theme of self-improvement and forging a philosophy aimed at elevating the quality of life. You can listen and subscribe at https://www.musttriumph.com/ or on any podcast platform. 

This episode is sponsored by www.blueapron.com/onfire For less than $ 10 per meal, Blue Apron delivers straight to your door seasonal recipes along with pre-portioned ingredients to make delicious, home-cooked meals. Get $ 30 off your first order—with free shipping—by going to www.blueapron.com/onfire 

Please, also show some love to my regular sponsors by shopping for supplements, special foods, clothing, and exercise equipment at http://www.onnit.com/history and receive a 10% discount. 

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History on Fire is brought to you by Kannaway. All CBD products are from organic, non-GMO European HEMP grown on generational family farms. The products all have a triple authenticated process guaranteeing you’re getting exactly what you are paying for. Because all of the CBD is from hemp and NOT cannabis, it is legal to use and possess in all 50 states AND Europe! Now you can get 100% THC-free CBD oil from hemp, delivered to your door in all 50 of the Unites States and the whole of Europe. Please check them out at: https://kannaway.com/2496006 

A huge thank you to https://www.dynastyforge.com/ for sharing with me their amazing swords. 

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My lady (and author of History on Fire logo, plus producer and editor of History on Fire) has a FB public page about her art & fighting: https://www.facebook.com/NahryEm/. Thank you to Onnit, Datsusara, Float Clinic, Shaman’s Simple Solutions, War Fuel, Proven Nutrition, and Fight Chix for sponsoring her for her first MMA fight. If you’d like to check out Fight Chix merchandise, you can get a 20% discount by going to http://www.fightchix.com/ and entering the code Fire20 upon checkout.

This is my public FB page: https://www.facebook.com/danielebolelli1/ 

Here is a link to the audiobook of my “Not Afraid”: http://www.danielebolelli.com/downloads/not-afraid-audiobook/ 

For those of you who may be interested, here is a lecture series I created about Taoist philosophy: http://www.danielebolelli.com/downloads/taoist-lectures/

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