The Burning House – Min Zhong

Min Zhong
Assignment 3

After a two days snow, children and students were having fun by sliding down at the President Lawn.

At the President Lawn,
Children’s laughter,
Spread through the whole Tufts Community



In Hojoki Visions of a Torn World, the ideas of evanescence and form came to me through Kamo_no_Chomei’s description of unexpected natural disaster. As “the flowing river never strops and yet the water never stays the same,” life never stays constant (Kamo 31). With an expected fire, large houses, communities and everything people have contributed their whole lives to, turn to ash in one night. These sudden, unexpected and dramatic changes are overwhelming. People hurt because they care. Their desire of holding on happiness and victory conflicts with the nature of evanescence and their inability to control anything.

If you live among crowds you cannot flee when fire breaks out.
If you wish to live far from others, traveling is hard and there is danger of
thieves (55).

Everything comes with a downside. Is it possible to search some inner peace? Kamo_no_Chomeri offers a solution- detach from the material world. By living in a small hut, Kamo tries to be free from anxiety that caused by the desire of power and wealth in the material world. In his philosophy, happiness contributes to sorrow. Having a simple life keeps him from being too happy and therefore from being too sad. However, no one can completely detach from the world. Kamo is attached to his surrounding as he comes to love his “ten-foot-square” hut (Kamo 76). In my opinion, a complete detachment from the outside world is unrealistic and unnecessary. To search inner peace, we need to understand and accept the fact that things change all the time in a consistent way. There is no forever success and there is also no forever failure. Happiness comes with sadness and Joy always comes after sorrow. A positive attitude towards lost and failure will bring inner peach to our hearts.

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