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It’s Better to be a Warrior in a Garden than a Gardener in a War Explained

It’s Better to be a Warrior in a Garden than a Gardener in a War Explained

It’s better to be a warrior in a garden than a gardener in a war” is a well-known proverb highlighting the importance of preparedness and proactive behavior. It suggests that it is better to be ready to face any situation that comes our way rather than being caught off guard.

Today, we will delve into the origin of this quote, the story behind the warrior in a garden, and how you can apply this quote in your everyday lives. Let’s begin!


Who Said This Term?

It is not known who originally said this phrase. Therefore, there is no clear answer. But it has been quoted by a lot of people and the main thing is to look at the sentiment. It is far better to peacefully live in a garden than being constantly at war. A lot of people have expressed this idea and some of the notable ones are:

  • Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu
  • Native American Chief Seattle
  • Beat poet Lawrence Ferlinghetti

Moreover, it is also directed to Miyamoto Musashi.

It's better to be a warrior in a garden than a gardener in a war

What Is Its Meaning?

If a warrior is in a garden taking care of it, then he can handle the job on his own without relying on a gardener. But if a gardener is in a war, then he won’t be able to win the inevitable battles and ultimately dies.

The main thing behind this saying is that you should be prepared for everything in life and accept what comes.

  • A warrior is prepared for everything and when the situation calls, he’ll be there.
  • The gardener is unlike the warrior and he ignores the harsh reality of life.
  • This saying also tells us about delayed gratification as well. The warrior trains hard in martial arts and thus is ready at a moment’s notice when war comes his way.
  • The gardener is busy enjoying the serene setting and thus can’t do anything to save his own life.

Therefore, it is best to be a warrior in a garden than a gardener in a war.

It's Better to be a Warrior in a Garden than a Gardener in a War. What Is Its Meaning?

Where Did This Quote Originate From? (Chinese Proverb)

It is supposed to be a Chinese proverb. It is often attributed to the philosopher Sun Tzu but there is no evidence of him actually using it. It is also said that Westerners invented this saying while summarizing the philosophy of Sun Tzu.

Story of the Warrior: Explained!

Warriors are trained in martial arts, sword combat and are protectors of the community. They have a lot of great responsibility and have to appear in times of war. Most of the time, warriors also protect those who are unable to stand for themselves.

They put their own fear behind them and risk their lives for others. A Warrior in a Garden is a story that has been told in a lot of different ways in various cultures.

  • In this story, a warrior decides to retire from battle and live a peaceful life.
  • He purchases a plot of land and begins to grow food in the garden. Despite his peaceful surroundings, he continues to train every day.
  • This allows him to hone his skills and stay alert and vigilant. He knows that even in the peaceful setting of a garden, danger can still arise.
  • One day, a group of bandits enters the garden. They intend on stealing the warrior’s crops and valuables. He uses his skills and abilities to defeat the bandits and protect his garden.
Story of the Warrior: Explained!

The Warrior vs. The Gardener

These are the main differences between the duo:



Appreciates the beauty but is very


Only enjoys the beauty and is ignorant of

the reality

Trains really hard and thus can survive


No training and doesn't focus on what is

to come

Very humble but shows a lot of strength:

Acts fake and is weak in his body and mind

Respected by everyone as he is a fighter:

No one cares about him as he can't be


Knows the harsh reality of the world:

Only believes in higher ideal thinking but

has no practical knowledge

Knows about the incoming dangers:

Ignorant of what is about to come

Applying The Warrior Ideology in Your Life

You must be wondering, how you can apply this ideology into your life. War meaning can be different for different people so here are some of the things that you should focus on:

1. Acknowledge Reality

A lot of people think of the world as a place of no conflict. They believe that if all of us tried just a little bit, we can change everything. But the problem is that these are those who grew up in the protected bubbles and are unaware of the harsh realities of life.

It is all an illusion. There are limited resources in our world. So, everyone has to compete to get these resources. This is going to lead to violence at some point. Another thing is that there are a lot of people that just enjoy watching other people suffer.

Acknowledge Reality
Advice: That is why you need to acknowledge the reality of life as it is. Be ready for everything and any situation that might come to your doorstep.

2. Learn Martial Arts

Learning an “alive” martial art is an important aspect of becoming a warrior in a garden. It is one that involves live sparring and realistic training scenarios, rather than just practicing techniques on a stationary target.

  • It is important because it allows you to test and refine your skills in realistic ways.
  • It prepares you for the chaos and unpredictability of a real-life situation.
  • It will also help you develop mental and emotional resilience.
  • By training in a challenging and realistic environment, you can develop the mindset of a warrior.
  • One that is focused, disciplined, and prepared for any challenge that comes his way.
Learn Martial Arts
Advice: You should look for martial arts that involve live sparring, competition, and realistic training scenarios, such as Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Boxing, or Muay Thai.

3. Own Fear – Embrace It

Embracing fear is a crucial aspect if you want to become a warrior. Fear a natural human response to danger or uncertainty. It can also hold you back and prevent you from achieving your goals.

  • You should always acknowledge and accept it, rather than try to ignore or suppress it.
  • In this way, you will begin to understand where it comes from and its effects.
  • Actually, embracing it can be a source of strength and motivation.
  • You should face the fears head-on and push yourself out of your comfort zones.
  • It will help you in getting better equipped to face any challenge that comes your way.
It's Better to be a Warrior in a Garden than a Gardener in a War. Own Fear - Embrace It
Advice: Be clear in your mind that embracing fear doesn’t mean being reckless or foolish. It is important to assess the risks and take only the calculated ones. There is no point in blindly charging into a dangerous situation.

4. Don’t Get Power Drunk

The principle of not getting power drunk means actively avoiding becoming overly attached to power. Using it only to dominate and control others.

  • Doing so leads to a sense of invincibility and a disregard for others.
  • It ultimately undermines your goals and can become the reason for harm.
  • Instead of seeking to dominate others, true power comes from embracing one’s vulnerabilities and weaknesses.
  • Use them to become a better and more empathetic person.
Don’t Get Power Drunk
Advice: By following the above advice, you can cultivate a sense of humility and respect for others. It will allow you to achieve great success in life.

5. Stay Cautious

You should never be cocky at any point in life. The main reason is that there is always a person who is stronger, more dangerous, and more ruthless than you.

  • If you are trained in combat, you should think of the long-term consequences of getting into a fight.
  • It is not always going to be a 1v1. Sometimes, it might be you against a dozen of others.
  • This is a type of situation where you need to act smart and stay cautious.
Stay Cautious
Advice: It is not worth dying for so sometimes you need to take a step back and control your anger as well.

6. Don’t Hate

Hating others is harmful not only to those who are hated but also to the person who hates them.

  • It only creates more suffering and negativity. Instead, you should focus on cultivating compassion.
  • It involves understanding and empathizing with others, even those with whom you disagree or have conflicts.
Don’t Hate
Advice: However, it doesn’t mean excusing harmful behavior or allowing yourself to be taken advantage of. You should recognize the humanity in others and approach them with a sense of understanding and care.

Apply This to Other Areas of Life

You can be a warrior in a garden in many aspects of life. There are a lot of battles that you’ll need to face in your life such as:


This battle is one that is continuous for everyone. You never know when the situation might change and you lose your job, etc. There can be a lot of different factors.

  • It is best to invest in other skills such as digital marketing to never rely on anyone.
  • If you are working for someone and also building your skills at the same time, then you will never go broke.
  • It is necessary that you work hard in peaceful times and make yourself more capable for the future.


Everyone wants to be the most attractive person in a place. Men have a lot of catching up when it comes to the sexual battle. Learn to be confident, bold, and precise in everything that you do. This will make you more attractive and your personality will come out more.

Natural Disasters/Wars/Pandemics

You need to be ready for everything. Stability is never going to last and with the current situation of the world, you should be prepared for anything. Covid really messed things up and now with the Ukraine war, a lot of people still refuse to prepare.

When the end times come, you will have to face it alone. Therefore, it is best to prepare now so that you won’t have to worry about it later on.

Other Factors:

A warrior in a garden is not only applicable to the above things but it is also important to use it in things like:

1. Physical Fitness

It is really important to get your body in shape. You can’t protect anyone if you can’t even stand up for yourself. There are a lot of factors that combine to make your life healthy such as nutrition, sleep, fitness, etc. Work and fight for yourself, so when the war time comes, you are ready for it.

Physical Fitness

2. Situational Awareness

Nowadays, everyone is stuck to their mobile phones. They are clueless about the things happening around them. Numerous accidents have happened just because people were on their smartphones.

You limit your phone usage in the relaxing pastime. You need to be situationally aware of the things around you. You should know the fire exits in your building in case of a fire or if a person is acting weird. It is going to help you a lot in life.

3. Self Defense

After applying working on the first two steps, now comes the part where you learn to defend yourself. It is important that you know how to deal with a sticky situation where the only way out is to fight. That is why it is crucial to learn martial arts so that you aren’t at any disadvantage.

Self Defense

4. Firearms

You should at the least know how to use a firearm. Even if you do not like guns or are scared of them, you should know how these work. If a situation comes where you are at the end of a gun barrel and you know how the gun works, it is most likely that you can get out of there in one piece.

The concept of war is a powerful tool for navigating the challenges of life. By adopting a warrior mindset, we can cultivate a sense of inner strength and purpose, and approach our struggles with greater resilience and compassion.

Final Thoughts

However, it is important to remember that this mindset should not be used as an excuse for aggression or violence towards others. It should be used to promote inner growth and personal development, as well as a positive change in the world around us.

Final Thoughts
Advice: You should go around waging a war everywhere. It teaches you to be relaxed but sharp at all times.


Is it better to be a warrior in a garden?

Yes, it is better to be a warrior in a garden. It allows for a mindset that emphasizes resilience, determination, and compassion in the face of life’s challenges.

Why is it better to be a warrior than a gardener?

It is better to be a warrior than a gardener because a warrior is going to be ready for any difficult situation. The gardener only knows how to tend the garden and thus doesn’t see the harsh reality of life.

What is the meaning of the warrior?

The warrior represents a mindset of strength, courage, and resilience in the face of adversity. It is often associated with martial traditions, but can also be applied to any area of life where determination and a sense of purpose are required.

How does the warrior in the garden solve the dilemma?

The warrior in the garden solves the dilemma by combining the principles of strength and resilience with a nurturing approach to life. This enables them to overcome obstacles and challenges while maintaining their inner peace.


A warrior tending a garden is an approach that every one of us should take in all aspects of life. Having a warrior mindset is what will allow us to maintain internal peace while navigating through the hurdles of life. So, if you have been living as a gardener, you are only wasting your time. In the end, It’s better to be a warrior in a garden than a gardener in a war!

How will you apply will ideology in your life? Share your thoughts in the comments!

Jessica Zander

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