Surrender: A Story about the Power of the Mind

This story about the power of the mind tells us about the life of a legendary Japanese samurai who went from being feared to being admired, from an apprentice to a master.
Surrender: A Story about the Power of the Mind

Last update: 18 January, 2021

This story about the power of the mind begins in ancient Japan with a samurai named Tunaki, a young warrior with a passion for combat. His early training, along with his intelligence, made him quickly stand out in combat.

Tunaki was admired and feared for his courage and agility. People said that he wasn’t afraid of anything and never lost a fight, and it was true. That’s why he became one of the best-known and most celebrated warriors in Japan. They said his eyes were like fire and his movements like those of a tiger.

On the other hand, Tunaki’s corpulence didn’t detract from the precision and agility of his movements. His training followed a very strong discipline, which made him fearsome with the saber. However, his story tells us about the power of the mind and how this samurai always wanted to learn more.

“When the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will know peace.”

-Jimi Hendrix-

A samurai.

In search of learning

People said that Tunaki looked for new sources of knowledge. One of his classmates told him about a Chinese master he had heard of. He lived in a Buddhist monastery and was one of the best warriors on the planet.

Tunaki thought it would be a great idea to challenge him. A fight with him would consolidate his fame, and, in the process, he would learn from his rival. So, soon afterward, he left for China with his mind set on conquest.

This story about the power of the mind tells us that Tunaki arrived three weeks later at the monastery where master Shú lived, the potential opponent that he was desperate to meet. When he saw him, he couldn’t believe it. The person who was supposed to be such a great warrior was small and thin, a man who inspired love rather than fear.

The master invited him to stay. He talked with Tunaki every night for a week. At the end of the week, he told him that he’d like to offer him his teachings because he considered him to be an honest man who deserved to progress. Tunaki accepted and began his apprenticeship.

The power of the mind

Master Shú patiently taught Tunaki that the main organ of combat was the brain. With great patience, he instructed him about the true essence of martial arts. The true warrior knew and understood the human mind, but, above all, he was a compassionate and peaceful human being.

Tunaki began to understand that the most difficult enemies to defeat are the ones we find within ourselves. They go by the names of anger, pride, and vanity. He also understood that the best type of combat is the one that you manage to avoid. Our desire to defeat and destroy others ends up destroying ourselves.

This story about the power of the mind tells us that, after two years, Tunaki returned to his native land. Nobody could believe the change in him. He was no longer the furious and impetuous warrior of before, but, rather, a prudent and thoughtful man who earned the respect and admiration of all. Because of this, dozens of apprentices came from all over the world to see him.

The power of the mind.

A special challenge

Tunaki’s fame grew steadily. Sometime later, a new samurai called Kenka appeared. He was very similar to how Tunaki used to be, and just as agile and skillful. When he heard about Tunaki’s fame, he wanted to meet and challenge him. He needed to prove that he could beat him and traveled a long way to do so.

As soon as he arrived, he challenged him to combat. He told him that he would show all his apprentices what a true samurai was. He was ready to beat him to prove that he was superior. Just the very presence of this samurai was intimidating. His eyes were angry and his body was that of a seasoned fighter. Tunaki accepted the challenge with humility.

The next day, Kenka arrived armed with his sword, but was surprised when he saw Tunaki sitting, meditating. Everyone was expectant. Suddenly, Tunaki got up and picked up his weapon. The two slowly walked towards each other. Just as they stood there face to face, Tunaki lowered his weapon and turned his back on his rival. Kenka was confused and didn’t know what to do.

If he attacked the master, he’d be called a coward. Instead of being admired, he’d be despised by all. However, if he didn’t attack him, then his desire for victory would be frustrated.


This story about the power of the mind teaches us a valuable lesson. Kenka saw the psychological superiority of Tunaki and felt ashamed. The apprentices understood what it was to win without needing to fight: neutralizing the rival, minimizing the risks, and losing the least possible energy in the process.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • del Valle, C., Ferrer, M., Grao, E., & Serrano, I. (2004). Una vez más por la paz. Iberautor.

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