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Hagakure: Book of the Samurai: Chapter Three
Lord Naoshige once said, "There is nothing felt quite so deeply as giri. There are times when someone like a cousin dies and it is not a matter of shedding tears. But we may hear of someone who lived fifty or a hundred years ago, of whom we know nothing and who has no family ties with us whatsoever, and yet from a sense giri shed tears."
When Lord Naoshige was passing by a place called Chiriku, someone said to him, ' 'In this place there lives a man who is over ninety years old. Since this man is so fortunate, why don't you stop and see him?" Naoshige heard this and said, "How could anyone be more pitiful than this man? How many of his children and grandchildren do you suppose he has seen fall before his very eyes? Where is the good fortune in that?"
It seems that he did not stop to see the man.
When Lord Naoshige was speaking to his grandson, Lord Motoshige, he said, "No matter whether one be of high or low rank, a family line is something that will decline when its trine has come. If one tries to keep it from going to ruin at that time, it will have an unsightly finish. If one thinks that the time has come, it is best to let it go down with good grace. Doing so, he may even cause it to be maintained."
It is said that Motoshige's younger brother heard this from him.