Sunday, December 06, 2009

I could not have been otherwise.

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.


Anonymous said...

Just a week ago I went to a garden in Tokyo and when I looked up to the top of a tree, a brown leaf broke off from its branch and fell towards me. I extended my palm and it fell right onto it. I observed and pondered about this amazing incident.

This is a leaf that haven't touched the ground. Unlike billions and billions of others.

Our existence in this world changes the outcome, or history of the universe. To me, the fact that we can also appreciate this, is the most amazing experience of a living and breathing human being.

Anonymous said...

Such a philosophy certainly brings consolation at the end of the day after regretfully reflecting on past events and one's own doings, which I am tempted to do every so often. To consider that the past could never have been otherwise in addition to the obvious recognition that it can never be replaceable is comforting. Such a philosophy also brings great confidence and courage in looking towards the future, to consider that as much as the past can only be what it was, the future can only be what it will be.
Que sera, sera, whatever will be, will be.

砂山鉄夫(Tetsu Sunayama) said...

I think it's important for us humans surrounded by a lot of digital information to listen to the voice of nature, once in a while.

The voice of the trees, the voice of the blue sky,the voice of the soil, and so on.

She has no language, but gives us a lot of inspiration.

But, from now on, I have to do some tasks on my PC. Ay, well well...

yuzu said...

>The sight of a tree standing against the blue sky, with its boughs full of kaki fruits.

I can live in this sentence for a while. It beats me and give energy in winter season.
I went to the park and touch greens, trees in this morning.
Sky was shining, I felt something like a persimmon in the sky. Thank you very much.