23/August/2023 in Krakow
The other day in Krakow, while walking in a park
An old guy approached me & abruptly said;
"Are you Japanese?"
Around 60-year-old English guy
who has lived in Krakow for 5 years,
who used to live in Japan for 15 years in 70s & 80s,
who has a Japanese wife,
& who could still speak some broken Japanese
We were chatting for a while
At some point he started to talk about how he began to believe in God
.......It was this moment that I couldn't listen to him seriously anymore
It was this moment that my skillful acting began, as in;
"I am your serious, obedient, Japanese, Asian, submissive, listener"
And let him speak whatever he wanted while his story went through from my left ear to right ear straight
I'm happy to read books written by both Japanese & non-Japanese authors
But there is one subject that I read only from Japanese writers
It is about death
One of the prime motivations humans developed religions was to deal with death
Just like all women are eternally the biggest mystery for straight men,
death has been the biggest mystery for the entire humanity
In order to fully understand it, we have to experience it
But once we experience death, we no longer exist in this world
If all religious fundamentally talks about "How to live", then it must also mean they talk about "How to die"
If they exclude death, then it's just fraud
"How to live" is always connected to "How to die"
And this "How to die" part is exactly what I feel totally unfamiliar, totally unacceptable, totally unbearable with all "foreign" religions
To be more specific, their view over suicide
Seeing suicide as "defeat" or "escape" or "selfish" or "immoral"
This overly humanly kindness
I have to admit that 99.999999% of suicide is something totally unfavourable, totally unfortunate, and it should not happen
But I know rare cases where suicide achieves something
Suicide as a way of establishing oneself
Suicide as a way of proving higher values than oneself
Suicide as a way of being humble & modest for life
I'm aware that glorifying death, particularly glorifying suicide, sounds very Japanese
But this is exactly when I feel how tightly one individual is connected with his own country & this is exactly when I face an impossibility of eliminating an influence of my own culture & history
.......Old guy's talk still continued
Half-heartedly I was wondering ".......while you lived in Japan for 15 years, what did you do there? You didn't come across any of their 'morbid' notions about death & suicide.....?"