Sunday, October 25, 2009

Imagining liberates

Recently, I received a very nice mail from a gentleman in Thailand. In it, he said some kind words about one of my books which has been translated to Thai. In the answer, I told him that to my regret, I have never visited the beautiful country so far, but hope to do so in the near future.

I know King Bhumibol Adulyadej Thailand, who has reigned since 1946, is ill. I can only imagine how the king's illness is affecting the Thai people. My compassion and best wishes for the Thai people.

As Ludwig Wittgenstein remarked, there's probably no private language. Intersubjectivity is the hallmark of any speech. On the other hand, each language defines a universe of its own. The English enshrines one, the Japanese creates another, and the Thai gives life to yet another cosmos in which there are numerous entities around.

To be born and grow up in one linguistic universe results in a unique world. Your neighbour is invisible, unless you make a conscious effort to immigrate. This blog itself is an experiment in that direction by somebody who started to learn English at the age of 12.

The mail from the Thai gentleman gave me thoughts. I imagined having been born and grown up in the country of smiles. I imagined being worried about and wishing the best for King Bhumibol Adulyadej.

Imagining liberates, by putting more life to circulate in one's system.


Anonymous said...

I sometimes feel I should once detach myself from adherence to a peculiar value. It is good to taste the sore joy of solitude in order to widen our view of life and love freely more deeply.
Imagining and creating true distance liberate.

Unknown said...

Truly a language and the mental world it creates for the fish that choose to stay inside, satisfies them and all that they can imagine.... However we are all part of a new era. One that insists with strong rip-tide like currents to push the fish from one area to another. We have no choice to remain as our parents were, as we were.

I walk among the farming communities around me, at one time the sight of a foreigner was a quixotic bit of entertainment to discuss over the evening rice bowl. Now, the sign of the sight is more than that, it is the end of an age. The farmers are content to remain rooted and tilling their space, yet all around them the invisible whirlwind blows. It affects everything they want to buy, or sell. Those who prefer to stay in their diminishing language world will, I'm willing to bet, become victims of those who seek with the use of whatever (communication) tool they have for their own interests.

So what do we need? We need a truly teachable, learn-able efficient in its sound to spelling correspondence, international language, it may be as beautiful and as culturally appealing as a tractor, but something that is critically needed. English in its present form, is not (yet) that language.
Changes need to be made.
Then this language needs to be put into place in all schools as a second language to the mother tongue

กื้อ said...

Wow, I had surprised you talk about Thailand. I think to comment to your blog about 4-5 days but i not sure about my language. I am Thai people too. I had read your book in translated to Thai language too.

your book give me assure to practice English and diligent.

I think his says give to i want to advice and I think same you i followed this blog to learn English.

Chie Muramatsu said...

I have been addicted to your books. I have read a quite few of them. Recently, I read 「こころと脳の対話」. I felt very encouraged by the comments in the sections of 「近代化学が排除してきたもの」and 「ひとつの事例は普遍に通じる」. I am living in the world of academics in the U.S. where 近代化学 is the mainstream.

On the other hand, I was very disappointed by the comments you made in the section of 「『運命の人』も文脈のせい?」. I have a serious doubt about whether「外国で結婚すると、失敗する人って多い」reflects the truth. It rather reflects your belief. The comment 「外国で日本人に会うと、しとやかに見えたりするんですね。どんな人でも。それが日本に帰ってきたら全然そうじゃなかったりするから」reflects your belief as well. I, personally, found them careless statements. I now have started wonder if everything that I read so far was written through this guy's lens.

Anonymous said...

Mr/Ms Anonymous's statement shakes me awake. thank you so much. m