Walking along Powderhouse around 4:00pm, feeling uninspired and frustrated at a boring tree while disappointed by the short Winter daylight.
Not this leaf, nor this tree,
I mourn the loss of the day.
cold, and dark, so early.
I’m really enjoying the pacing of the class. It seems that Tufts has put a lot of trust in the Professor, and he seems to know what he’s doing. I understand the concept of evanescence, I think. Finding beauty in the fragile and temporal. “Dying at the height of… beauty, … the fate of us all,” sums up the idea nicely. (Inoye, 2) If something’s eternal, there’s no real point in celebrating it. It can be taken for granted without consequence. But form eludes me. The very first class explained that form makes meaning possible in a “world of constant change.” (Lecture, 1/16) Is it a reaction to an oversensitivity to change? Were the ancient Japanese people so concerned with the fragility of the world that they insisted on strict rituals for meaning, evidenced by the Japanese artists who learned by rigid practice? (Lecture, 1/23) Finally, we covered the essence of Japanese Shinto, which is animistic and differs from traditional symbolic religions in one key way: while Mt. Olympus was revered because it represented the throne of the Gods, Mt. Futagami or Tachi were revered for their own majesty. (Kitagawa, 46)