Friday, March 05, 2010

The trick was just to focus on the next step, in order not to despair unduly.

When I was a kid, I used to climb mountains a lot. Japan is a very mountainous country, and it is not difficult to find a mountain nearby anywhere in the nation.

It was not that I particularly liked the experience of climbing. It was hard to uplift your body against the gravity, even though at those times I was not that heavy. However, I did like to follow the paths in hours of sweating and increased heart beats.

It was rewarding to be able to view the scenery once you were at the top. From up there, everything became open and visible all at once. In the course of the upward journey, things remain very invisible and intractable. It was hard to tell where you were exactly, and whether you were approaching the destination at all. Sometimes the path went down, and then up, and you felt that your energy was being wasted. Once you had the commanding view of the peak, you have a fairly good idea of where you have been all these times. And then you start the downward journey in which you find yourself lost all over again.

When I look back, I guess I rather liked the long and sometimes boring ritual of climbing. The trick was just to focus on the next step, in order not to despair unduly. It was remarkable how some elements of the famous Myth of Sisyphus was to be found in my humble trial.


apple407 said...

The vignettes of times gone by that pass by our present consciousness must be the work of our subconscious. What this “selective work” is meant to accomplish is a mystery. It does have a rather “hide and go seek” aspect that keeps one thinking, with potentially a revelatory “find”. Yet, getting lost is, often, a reassuring outcome that takes us back to start again.

Dr. Mogi, you have, in the past, mentioned “Cather in the Rye” as a book you have enjoyed. Here is an article you might enjoy by a columnist who has found J.D. Salinger and Andy Warhol to be an interesting couple. Though a jarring departure from the forum, getting lost might prove enjoyable.

apple407 said...

Sorry, this is the link to the article:

Anonymous said...

The ideal way of life should be to always maintain a vague but real sense of "climbing" towards something, despite not being fully (if at all) aware of where one may be and/or heading at the time. What I would hope to steer clear of is a sense of "stagnation" towards the seemingly repetitive days of "lifelessness", days of the same old same old where one is likely to be eventually led to the mental state of subconsciously awaiting (if not yearning for) the final curtain, perhaps a situation similar to Sisyphus. I can consequently go with the sense of "unawareness", or the sense of "being lost", which comes hand in hand with the expectations and hopes for an eventual arrival at the summit, the ultimate observation platform.

To just "keep running (or climbing)" as with this video, however, is not always easy.

Or to go with the song from the Sound of Music, which suddenly starts to play and ring true in my mind at times, is similarly not always easy.

"Climb ev'ry mountain
Search high and low
Follow ev'ry by-way
Every path you know

Climb ev'ry mountain
Ford ev'ry stream
Follow ev'ry rainbow
'Till you find your dream

A dream that will need
All the love you can give
Everyday of your life
For as long as you live

Climb ev'ry mountain
Ford ev'ry stream
Follow ev'ry rainbow
'Till you find your dream"


Yuzu said...

I have not climbed mountains a lot .
It was a few times in my life, but I admire people who climbed mountains.

I like this wards,

"I don't climb for conquering the mountain.

I don't want to prove that it just for I can climb the mountains.

I want to know about me , that' all.
so I clime mountains."

(by Reinhold Messner Italian mountaineer)

砂山鉄夫(Tetsu Sunayama) said...

I suppose your target mountain is very high. Please take a rest once in a while. Eating rice balls on the top of the mountain is very good!

Anonymous said...

this is a very eye-opening topic.
you are talking about the LIFE itself, aren't you??

i have some books of yours, and i like it very much.
and i'm always looking forward to your twit,too.
please take care.