When Soseki Natsume was offered doctorate degree from the Japanese government in the Meiji era, he declined, saying that he has been living as an anonymous Natsume somebody, and wanted to keep living as Natsume somebody. When the government official insisted on receiving the degree, Soseki firmly rejected, saying that "seeing the circumstances in this country, the presence of the degree of doctorate is doing only harm to the progress of academic studies, I must conclude"
As I live on, and experience various ups and downs of life, I start to appreciate the depth and perceptions of Soseki. Humans are weak, and many people fall victim to worshipping the merits and degrees bestowed upon them, while the real substance suffers. Soseki saw clearly, that the social honours enjoyed by his contemporary "cultural dignitaries" only worked to diminish their sensitivity as creators and appreciators of artistic and academic establishments.
One has to remain wild, untamed, in order to be creatively interesting. That was Soseki's instinct, and the Meiji era Japan was rapidly going into the opposite direction. Almost 100 years later, the "important people" who enjoyed prestige as "doctorate" holders are long forgotten, while the works of Soseki, who remained a wild animal, keep being read and appreciated by would-be wild animals.
Soseki Natsume. An cultural wild beast to the end.