This is one of my favorite scrolls in Sensei's collection. The scroll is a painting of a stone tsukubai or water basin that appears in the garden at Ryoan-ji temple in Japan. The carving looks like a coin and the kanji that surround the square in the middle doesn't mean anything, but when you add the square to the kanji they become 吾, 唯, 足, 知 or ware tada taru oshiru. Ware tada taru (wo) shiru literally translates as "I only know contentment." Sensei translated the meaning as, "To know what is sufficient." This idea of sufficiency is the root of our training.
O Sensei talked about this idea of contentment as "Masakatsu, agatsu" or the true victory is the victory over yourself. When we can be content with not only who we are but what we can do as well as what we have, we can be content. That victory that O Sensei is speaking of is the coming to terms with ourselves or in other words contentment. We only need what we have and only need to be who we already are, but this is easier said than done and that is why O Sensei said the true victory is the victory over yourself.
--------------------------------------------------------- Day 10 update: Well that was something. Letting others off the hook was easy, but letting myself off the hook was soooooo hard. I would be lying if I said I made it because in reality there were times when I just couldn't let myself off the hook. I think that this whole challenge was about the realization that letting yourself off the hook is necessary to live a healthy life. Beating ourselves up for one reason or another isn't the way and that letting ourselves off the hook for sins is the right path even if it is the hardest. Please do your best to let others off the hook when they make a mistake because it will be easier to let yourself off the hook when you do too.