Setting: riding a bike home in my southern california at night on a deserted road, looking up at the stars and not paying attention to what’s in front of me.
Silence and dark
dome sky wrapped around
I feel very refreshed by what I’m learning of Japanese culture and religion so far. The Japanese views on hakanasa, or evanescence (Inouye 26), and form and their battle against each other is an extremely unique and powerful philosophy. I love that brevity is emphasized, and to me, it seems that it is the perfect way to deal with the changing world. If you waste your time trying to describe a moment with unnecessary adjectives and wrought descriptions, the moment will pass. As Ferris Bueller said, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” That is the beauty of Japanese poetry, to me. By leaving space in said poetry, you’re allowing the reader to make his or her own interpretation.
I definitely feel very confused at times when I think I understand a concept, such as the Japanese valuing the moment over a longer period of time, but then feel tension when something else I read about conflicts with that, but perhaps that may be the point.
While I definitely don’t feel I completely understand it, I also enjoyed reading about the Japanese views of monism and kami – everything is awesome and worthy of reverence, and that reality is so large and all-encompassing that all elements of life work together, even if they might not seem like they do. It’s a new concept to me to focus on the world around us as more than just objects we can use, but I think I like it.