A few days ago I wrote about the Kaki (persimmon fruit). The sight of a tree standing against the blue sky, with its boughs full of kaki fruits, is one of the most striking and vivid in the seasons of autumn and early winter. As an inhabitant of the Kanto plane, I am so accustomed to it. When out in the suburbs, I am unconsciously seeking for the signs of season, the Kaki trees and Susuki (Japanese pampas grass), for example.
That sensitivities and feelings are products of the environment is not a striking observation. It is very much true nevertheless. We humans are products of the soil, just as the trees, which cannot move about by themselves, are products of the grounds on which they grow.
Spinoza, in his magnum opus "Ethica", argues that this universe could have been otherwise, due to the perfect nature of God. If so, we are products of this particular universe by necessity, and we could not have been otherwise.
To think that I could not have been otherwise brings a strange consolation.