The first foreigner ever to win the gold medal in the All-Japan Toyama Ryu swordsmanship competition, Stephen Fabian is presently U.S. Branch Head of the Hontai Yoshin Ryu system and senior advisor to the International Shudokan Martial Arts Association, as well as professor of anthropology at North Central College in Illinois. In this edifying and inspiring personal account, Professor Fabian's background in anthropology and his scholarly knowledge of Zen Buddhism and Japanese culture are brought to bear on over two decades of training in Asian martial arts. The result is an illuminating and often entertaining presentation of nine key lessons for mastering life and self. Although each lesson is gleaned from a discreet phase in the author's life experience or martial career, taken together they form a coherent, step-by-step program for personal mastery and success in life, one that can be understood and embraced by all, even those with no interest in the martial arts.