Tokyo Notebook

-・- From My Everyday Life to Japanese Culture -・- Why don't you see the real Japan, not the typical foreigners' version.

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Posted by Kinakinw | --:-- | Comment [0] | TrackBack [0] | スポンサー広告

28 2010

The Word of Junji Yamashita

cormorant fishing master

I couldn’t fully write what Junji Yamashita (山下純司, 1934-), Usho (鵜匠, cormorant fishing master), told me in the last post. He is a representative for Usho in Nagara River area and an expert with five decades of experience.

I’d like to pass essence of his comments to you.

When the master launched into his theory on modern Japanese after answering my questions about cormorants (鵜), it sounded like a homily at first (I have to admit that…).

He said, “Modern Japanese tend to forget all of us are a part of nature. That is why people panic when death is approaching. They don’t know what providence they live in conformity to and how to make their final exit. We must become close to nature and live with other creatures.”
(I understood that “modern Japanese” meant people without the base of one's belief or clear-cut faith and pets are excluded from “other creatures.”)

Then, I noticed, though worded differently, his theory was just the same as that of Toemon Sano (佐野藤右衛, 1928-), a master gardener called cherry blossom guardian (桜守) in Kyoto. I wrote about his story in the previous post.

The masters mentioned the conception of life and nature ancient Japanese apparently had. Maybe, people who are engaged in primary industries still share the same view.

Fortunately or unfortunately, because humans have a highly developed brain, cerebral neocortex, we apt to confuse humans are “special” and think about oneself too deeply and excessively.

We’ll keep thinking about oneself anyway, but I realized it’s important to find an appropriate balance between a human as just one of living creatures and a social existence by the word of the two experts.


Posted by Kinakinw | 01:41 | Comment [0] | TrackBack [0] | Cultural Issue (Japan)

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