Leaving the World – Chris Navarro

Nothing this week.






Is Shukke the answer?  I believe the “bad news” is true.  Success does not last (Lecture 2/4).  It is also true that we will continuously be disappointed in this world.  However, would separating ourselves from these experiences be the right thing to do?  What do we have to gain?  For one, we would avoid the pain.  Maybe we can avoid being disappointed by others.  However, what would be the cost?  We would also be avoiding pleasure, love, companionship, and much more.  Many of us have experience great disappointment, at times a broken heart.  But, would you walk away from a good relationship simply because of the possibility of a breakup in the future?  What about the positive experiences you will miss?  I can see the appeal of “staying at zero” (Lecture 2/4).  If you maintain a stable position at zero, you will never be disappointed – you cannot fall.  Nonetheless, you do miss all of the positives.  I believe this approach is similar to saying, “If you do not play, you cannot lose.” Is it not better to play though?  I believe Chomei would say “No.”  He would agree that we are children playing in a burning house, unaware of the danger (Inouye 39).

After witnessing many people’s homes burn in the fire, Chomei writes: “All of man’s doings are senseless / but spending his wealth / and tormenting himself / to build a house in this hazardous city / is especially foolish” (Chomei 38).  As an outsider, Chomei sees various difficulties people experience in their lives, primarily the destruction of their homes.  However, this is what he sees precisely because he is an outsider.  He does not see the good things that they experience in their lives, or the good memories they create in their homes.  If we were to run away from our lives, we would miss out on all of the good and bad experiences we should have.  Is this not what it is to be human?  In my opinion, life is not a goal –it is a journey.  Therefore, to “leave” would be to miss the point of life itself.

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