Evanescence and Form

Thinking about Cicadas

By Songwha Choi

 When I was on my way home in cold weather, I realized that many trees in my garden already had lost their leaves.

         Garden trees without leaves

         Winter’s withered trees

          With having a snowstorm




            In our class, we are going to discuss about “evanescence and form.” (Inouye 1)  Since I was young, I have been curious about these ideas. As an Asian student, when I was in high school, I learned about those two concepts. However, I want to explore them in more detail from our class. Change is balanced by “shape” (kata) to the evanescence. (Inouye 7) It is hard to understand because I have never heard of the idea. According to Professor Inouye, Utsusemi is the essence of change. This image is the Japanese world view. He said that “nothing is permanent, and nothing lasts forever!” That idea makes me take some time for introspection. If everything changes, my life also is limited, but I would not like to think this in a pessimistic way. The poem by Otomo makes me understand Japanese sadness. It is not a bad thing, but rather positive and beautiful. (Lecture 1/23) Even though our lives are fragile or unpredictable, we can be contingent to overcome our weaknesses. Nothing is permanent in this wicked world-not even our troubles. (Charlie Chaplin) I think that after finishing this class, I would have learned a lot and become more insightful in my life.

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