TokyoFreePress
      An interactive and taboo-free journalism based in Japan




     
 
Welcome to TokyoFreePress Friday, March 24 2017 @ 03:12 AM JST
   

Why Don't We Join in the "Morphic" Journey after the Imminent Demise of Japan and America?

When any particular organized system ceases to exist, as when an atom splits, a snowflake melts, an animal dies, its organized field disappears from that place. But in another sense, morphic fields do not disappear: they are potential organizing patterns of influence, and can appear again physically in other times and places, wherever and whenever the physical conditions are appropriate. When they do so, they contain within themselves a memory of their previous physical existences.
- Rupert Sheldrake, The Presence of the Past (1988)


The issue with the life-or-death of an individual, or a group of individuals such as a nation-state, is not a laughing matter. It is for this simple reason that I have always refrained from talking about the fate of a foreign country, except when retaliating against arrogant American busybodies. They think they have special privilege to make their living by peddling their armchair prophecies about the future of foreign countries. That is why these guys predict so lightly that China or any other country they don't like is doomed to failure by such and such date, or that Japan or any other country they are fond of will survive formidable difficulties facing it by "reinventing" itself over and over again.

Thus far they have succeeded to dupe America's super-credulous audiences into believing in their opportunistic diagnoses of Japan. But I will never retract mine because if I changed my diagnosis, my entire 75-year life mostly spent here would turn into "much ado about nothing," retroactively. My dignity as a man is at stake in these statements I have deliberately made.

I have long defined Japan as a Culture of Apologies, but now I'm inclined to call America a Culture of Quotations. These self-styled scholars and pundits have long made it a rule to cherry-pick this idea here, that idea there, without really internalizing them. They jump at any idea that fits comfortably into their cheap ideologies. For one thing, they often compare communism against democracy, but they haven't read a single book written by Karl Marx, let alone Friedrich Hegel who had a profound influence on Marx's thoughts. As a result, they've got something that looks very much like spaghetti inside their skulls. It is true that in some areas of expertise such as computer science, web-based technologies, musical art, business administration, and quite understandably, psychiatry, America remains the world leader. But these are exceptions to the Culture of Quotations.

Also, I know some exceptions at an individual level. My American friend who has been known on this website by his handle "Diogenes" is one of them.

Last week, Diogenes sent me another gift. It was a book titled The Presence of the Past. I hadn't known its author even by name while many Japanese acquaintances of mine could tell who they thought Ruper Sheldrake was. According to these superstitious people, Sheldrake is a guy who developed a theory that scientifically explains the psychic power the likes of Uri Geller claim to have. Of course, that's not what the British biochemist actually is.

This post is not meant to be a book review, but I thought author's thought-provoking hypothesis of "formative causation" through "morphic resonance" on "morphic fields" was worth mentioning here. Sheldrake presents it in comparison with conventional ideas such as Newtonian inertia and Darwinian assumption of survival of the fittest.

When I was on the book, Plato's "recollection" and Kierkegaard's "repetition" were always on my mind. I don't claim to have delved into the history of European philosophy extensively. Yet, I am confident that unlike the average American, I have learned from some European thinkers, Plato and Kierkegaard in particular, to think things over very systematically and conduct my life very methodically. So, let me summarize their thoughts below here.

Plato was one of the disciples of Socrates. I think Socrates can be a good role model for American "thinkers" because he famously said, "All I know is that I know nothing." But Plato did not really agree to his teacher's agnosticism because his epistemology all boiled down to the idea that learning is nothing but recollection of what you have already known deep inside. 22 centuries later, Danish philosopher Soren Kierkegaard thought backward recollection is not enough to cope with difficulties facing modern man living in an uncertain world. In this context he came up with the idea that forward recollection is crucially important in real life. He named it repetition.

He warned, however, that if you try to repeat something without recollecting what exactly you have to repeat, you will end up in a life that is nothing but a fuss over nothing. To Kierkegaard, faith in God was the guiding light, but to atheists like myself, too, there is something that can help avoid a chaotic life.

We call it intuition.

It's no accident that the media in the U.S. are single-mindedly targeting intuition on the part of their audience, just like Joseph Goebbels did as Hitler's propaganda minister. Goebbels not only believed but also proved that repeating a same lie over and over again will give it an indisputable credibility. As a result, the American people have now had their intuitive faculties, as well as abilities to learn, or even think, seriously damaged. Small wonder their first, and last response to my theory about the unviable Japan is that it's totally counter-intuitive.

Admittedly Sheldrake's hypothesis is so extensive and have so far-reaching implications in many areas that they can't be fully proved in a matter of decades. That is why it still remains a hypothesis.

On the contrary, it's relatively easy to vouch my heretical theory. In fact, it has already worked itself out at least four times in the last 150 years. If I have to specifically name these epochal events one last time, they are 1) Commodore Perry's port calls in the 1850s, 2) the war defeat (or the launch of the unwinnable war) in the 1940s, 3) the burst of the bubble economy in 1990 and 4) the man-made disaster of 3/11/2011. What else do I have to have to substantiate my hypothesis?

Sheldrake's hypothesis has also helped me deepen my understanding of two other important theories.

One of them is Dr. Frank W. Putnam's clinical analysis of cases with child abuse. According to him, most of those who had been abused, sexually or otherwise, in their childhood, started to feel, typically in their adolescence, that something remained unsettled deep inside. This sense of uneasiness almost always led them to a compulsive urge to be re-victimized over and over again. Putnam could have said the same thing if he had learned the modern history of Japan.

The other one is Harvard professor Robert D. Putnam's theory about path-dependent trajectories. He said: "Where you can get to depends on where you're coming from, and some destinations you simply cannot get to from here." This also explains why Japan's insatiable aspiration for Westernization in the last 150 years has taken a fatal toll on this country. When I first quoted Putnam, one of my former American friends said he didn't like his "determinism," which is not exactly what it is, as if like or dislike of someone's thought was all that matters in his brain-dead country. Obviously he was badly in need of good education.

The Japanese disease is no longer remediable. If we still want to see a new and viable organism emerging in this archipelago, it will be born only out of the ruins of the nation-state named Japan.

To this end, I have repeatedly argued that the United States should pull the plug on the life-support system called the strategic alliance between the U.S. and Japan. It's quite unlikely that this country would survive the termination of the 50-year-old security treaty, but that is the only way for Japan to possibly "appear again physically in other times and places, wherever and whenever the physical conditions are appropriate."

And this is the only way for America to possibly break its addiction to recidivism.


By the way, did you know America, too, is terminally ill with its people acting more and more like the Japanese? Their Japanese friends have long been known for their unique behavioral pattern to stick their head in the sand in the face of a crisis. One example is the seclusion policy that lasted from the early-17th century to the mid-19th century.

Now we are seeing another example of ostrich policy across the Pacific. The stupid Americans think it is the only way to avoid domestic confrontation to police the world with their 369.000 troops stationed in 150 different countries including Afghanistan and Japan.
·

Story Options

Trackback

Trackback URL for this entry: http://www.TokyoFreePress.com/trackback.php?id=20110526051700315

No trackback comments for this entry.
Why Don't We Join in the "Morphic" Journey after the Imminent Demise of Japan and America? | 5 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
Why Don't We Join in the "Morphic" Journey for Japanese and Americans to Take after the Demise of Their Countries?
Authored by: samwidge on Saturday, May 28 2011 @ 12:35 PM JST

You said, "They jump at any idea that fits comfortably into their cheap ideologies. For one thing, they often compare communism against democracy, but they haven't read a single book written by Karl Marx, let alone Friedrich Hegel who had a decisive influence on Marx's thoughts."

I suppose that this is true and that we are keenly aware of all of it. We are a relatively big nation with many people and many views and much to do. If you wish to convince us of something collectively, you must make a major effort to do that convincing. Consider the billions of dollars spent in advertising on each televised sporting event just to convince us to buy some auto or a new kind of beer.

Everybody is trying to convince us of something. Some wish to do so at lower expense. The Taliban, for instance, wishes to convert us all to a religion for which the Taliban does not wish to take the time or expense to offer an explanation. Rather than spend big bucks in advertising the positive aspects of Islam, the Taliban figures that investing a few of its own young lives is a small price to pay. Each event is a microcosm of macrocosms.

As an excellent writer in English, you have a better chance at convincing us of anything than 99.999 percent of the rest of the world. You are doing well... but not well enough to please you.

Consider this: If Barack Obama were to step up and offer you $50-billion to convince America of some small thing, how would you handle the opportunity? What would that one small (or large) thing be? Remember -- you would be expected to produce a significant result.

You mention Dr. Frank W. Putnam's idea that people who had been "abused," feel that something remains unsettled deep inside. I don't know how to break this to you and Frank; everybody feels deeply unsettled inside. I ask rhetorically, can you imagine any happiness in life at all without being unsettled deep inside. That unsettled feeling is what gives each of us the will to push on, to succeed at something. You, for example, might be deeply pleased with your lot in life and everything about it. Go ahead; imagine the feeling... and the pointless boredom that goes with it. People who are deeply satisfied have no reason to continue their lives. Such people are living the lives of goldfish in bowls, protected and fed... until the bowl is tossed and fish are allowed to dry.

I have not read professor Putnam but this theory of "path-dependent trajectories" is undoubtedly correct. You can only get to somewhere else from where you are. There is just one thing that might give you some small amount of additional freedom. That one thing is your mind.

Like you, I am trapped by health and wealth problems, deafness, approaching blindness and a birth defect that made me "retarded." That is why I so cheerfully joined NASA's "Create the Future" contest (and remain the world leader in my own small field). I think the standard mantra on this is, " push your envelope... do all the things in your life that are allowed you."

Like you, I find it odd that the United States has troops stationed in 130 countries. Our Marines guard every one of our embassies in far more lands than that and many Marines die each year defending someone else (not always our own people, either). I find it upsetting that there is so very much conflict in the world and that folks cannot just get along. For me, the obvious question is, Which part of this paradigm should we change first?

Why Don't We Join in the "Morphic" Journey for Japanese and Americans to Take after the Demise of Their Countries?
Authored by: Y.Yamamoto on Monday, May 30 2011 @ 04:34 AM JST


samwidge,

It's very hard to give straight answers to the questions you raised here, in part because they involve complex and multifaceted issues and in part because most of them are not quite relevant to the issue with "morphic" influences we may or may not have on the future of mankind. But let me give it a try.

You ask how I would respond if Obama offered me $50 billion to convince America of "some small thing." My answer: I would certainly pocket $1 million for myself and give $49.999 billion to sane American taxpayers who still know this is their money, not Obama's.

You also ask if I'm ready to do more than I've already been doing. My answer: Nope. Since America is not my turf, I do not feel particularly obliged to do anything to solve any problem facing America. It's America's problem, not mine.

I don't know whether it is a question, but you say, "Everybody feels deeply unsettled inside." Are you saying that child abuse is non-issue here, or what? That would mean the same thing as saying we are living in a Shangri-la entirely free of heartaches and headaches.

You also say your marines are deployed in foreign lands to "guard every one of our embassies." But do you believe 369,000 military personnel are needed just to guard diplomats? You lament that despite the ubiquitous presence of U.S. Armed Forces, "there is so very much conflict in the world." But I think the CIA jargon "blowback" tells everything about "so very much conflict."

At any rate, these issues are none of my concern any more. My primary goal now is to keep telling the truth about things until the last day of my life. If I can gain a small number of people over to my side, that will be quite a bonus.

Yu Yamamoto
Why Don't We Join in the "Morphic" Journey for Japanese and Americans to Take after the Demise of Their Countries?
Authored by: samwidge on Monday, May 30 2011 @ 12:47 PM JST

Once again; you think very clearly.

You quoted me, "... 'if Obama offered (Tokyo Free Press) $50 billion to convince America of some small thing." You gave your answer as, " I would certainly pocket $1 million for myself and give $49.999 billion to sane American taxpayers who still know this is their money, not Obama's."

That's reasonable but I want to know what constructive thing you might do for my country or for your own. It is merely a hypothetical question.

You said, "You also ask if I'm ready to do more than I've already been doing. My answer: Nope. Since America is not my turf, I do not feel particularly obliged to do anything to solve any problem facing America. It's America's problem, not mine."

OOPS! Much of what you write addresses America's problems and critiques us. We need that. I cannot say that everything you suggest is perfect but I insist that your interest in educating people and getting their attention to this special international relationship is of immense importance. I suspect that you are already quite effective. You are getting results.

There is no harm in wondering what might make you more effective.

Many of us have already forgotten Okinawa. Many of us are entirely unaware of Japan's problems of military weakness. Many of us are in the dark about Japan's relationships with Russia, China, the Koreas, Taiwan, Micronesia and with India.

You remind us. You bring these things back and teach us to make our own impressions.

I like to imagine "what-if" scenarios. Tokyo Free Press" is a one-man show but I wonder what you could do if you were suddenly directing a crew of 50 skilled reporters. We never meet life's possibilities if we never dream of things bigger than those possibilities.

About "... deeply unsettled inside," you asked if I thought that child abuse was non-issue.

On the grand scale, child abuse/molestation is a very small part of the vast array of injustices. Even though the Vikings have stopped murdering, stealing brides and stealing wealth from England, people still starve in Ethiopia. Even though American Indians are no longer torturing visitors from other tribes, Somali pirates continue to loot and to kill. More than half the world's people suffer from some kind of mental illness. I'd sure like to end mental illness but I think that mental illness is the "Brownian motion" that keeps us all hustling for improvement.

You ask, "'You also say your Marines are deployed in foreign lands to "guard every one of our embassies.' But do you believe 369,000 military personnel are needed just to guard diplomats?"

Good heavens, no! Marines are the smallest part of it. There is a panoply of demands on us, demands that seem uniquely placed on the US. Both my sons were shot at by drug smugglers in Panama. No other nation would do the job. My youngest served as an Airman building homes in Honduras. Neither was a Marine. Both were soldiers in foreign lands.

Our earnest hope is that other nations will begin funding the United Nations properly and take up their fair share of the responsibility. We lost lives and spent money restoring both France and the European Axis nations after WWII. True; NATO is now far less an American thing than it once was but we wish for greater distance from it.

One never knows the truth about anything but the general opinion is good. As a wealthy nation, we could just give money away freely... but you know how that would work. If you can see a better alternative, please suggest it... and then suggest how Japan might fulfill the same objectives.

You said, "If I can gain a small number of people over to my side, that will be quite a bonus."

You have succeeded but we are not yet ready to let you go.

Why Don't We Join in the "Morphic" Journey for Japanese and Americans to Take after the Demise of Their Countries?
Authored by: Y.Yamamoto on Monday, May 30 2011 @ 02:21 PM JST


samwidge,

Thanks again. I think I must point out one important thing in relation to these issues we are talking about.

There is a misperception typical of ordinary Americans today: America is NOT a wealthy nation anymore. As you know the federal government is debt-ridden, state governments are debt-ridden and individual citizens are debt-ridden. And if you single out outstanding Treasury Securities, Chinese holding alone roughly accounts for 15% of $7.6 trillion.

You also seem to think the United Nations has not outgrown its raison d'etre yet. That is not true, either. And should it be considered true, America's contribution is only 22% of the total budget of the 66-year-old international organization.

In short, the American century has almost come to an end.

I know it's extremely hard for the Americans to face the reality. But you can't change these facts unless you stick your head in the sand.

Yu Yamamoto
Why Don't We Join in the "Morphic" Journey for Japanese and Americans to Take after the Demise of Their Countries?
Authored by: Diogenes on Monday, May 30 2011 @ 11:10 PM JST
That was a very appropriate quote by Sheldrake. Again, he adds another angle that reinforces your argument that Japan is ‘univable,” but also within that statement is a promise of hope. What was can be again. Why not? The United States and Japan are the two faces of Janus on one body—both in terminal decline, but the patients refuse to accept their inevitable end. The doctor has closed his bag; touched the shoulder; ignored the pleas for help that he can’t bring; and given the final nod to the anxious family. It’s over. The battle is not winnable.

Last night, while flipping through the TV channels, I watched the final minutes in an old 1940’s version of “The Titanic.” The lifeboats were loaded and the ship was bow down at a 45 degree angle with the band stupidly playing some tune--denial right up to the end. My god, it was unreal. I hope this isn’t how it actually happened, but I suspect that it was an accurate portrayal. It also seemed like a metaphor for our two countries—fools drinking, singing, and dancing to the music, while the ship is racing for the bottom to meet at Davy Jones’ Locker. There are people getting ready for this inevitability in the U.S. http://titaniclifeboatacademy.org/ Note what’s written on the forward funnel of the ship. These guys get it. I’m one of these lifeboat people, although I’m not associated with this or any organization but getting myself ready as best as one can. Seeing reality as it really presents itself to us is extremely difficult.

Samwidge,

Your answers tell me that you are living in what George Carlin calls, the American Dream because, as he tells us, you have to be asleep to believe it. You can watch him here. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=acLW1vFO-2Q The number of U.S. foreign military bases is astronomical. Some report the numbers between 870 to as many as over 1,000. Have you considered what that means? Think of the populations of China or India. Their populations are close to four times the size of the U.S. Does China have even 50 foreign military bases? Do they have even 2? Does India? How about the Russians? They have one ship docked in Syria to monitor the aggressive and dangerous-to-life Israel. Israeli politicians and military generals repeatedly threaten to attack Russia. Why don’t we hear this? Could the fact that nearly all of the American media are owned by Zionists? Think about your statement that, “There is a panoply of demands on us, demands that seem uniquely placed on the US.” What? Where did that fiction come from? That’s what Hitler might have said or Tojo! My god, man, what would you think if Afghanistani military people were shooting Hellfire missiles at Helena and killing innocent American children and adults? What if their military had invaded, not asked to come in, but invaded, say, North Dakota and started doing house to house searches? Do you hear what you are saying? Our military, your sons, if they are involved in combat, are killing foreigners. This is murder, brother, murder. Do you believe the fiction that Osama bin Laden was some mastermind that caused the WTC attacks? My god that is the most insulting open lie ever told. Why do I have to even tell you this? It’s public knowledge about what’s really going on. What in the hell were Americans doing in Viet Nam? Eisenhower told us quite frankly. This is a direct quote from him: “It’s not Vietnam’s oil, it’s our oil. (Meaning the offshore oil fields that were known back in the ‘40s.) It’s not Vietnam’s bauxite. It’s our bauxite.” You can find the source for that quote in “Turning the Tide,” by Noam Chomsky. I want you to think about something. Besides the fact that the French had the Foreign Legion, what other country has an organization like the American Veterans of Foreign Wars? Do you not see something wrong with this? Look, I’m not even going to comment any further. You need to get a real education, and a real education is a self education. I could suggest a way to start, but frankly, I don’t think you’d actually do the necessary work because you don’t recognize that your thinking is completely wrong. Maybe it’s too late for you. You are possessed by the American spell, the American exceptionalism. When I travel to foreign countries, it’s people like you that will get me murdered by foreigners because American military, C.I.A. psychopaths, and other American contract murderers are robbing and killing them to get to their treasures for a few rich psychopaths in the corporate world. Why do you think NATO is murdering Libyans? I can name off the top of my head: oil, one of the biggest caches of gold on the planet, and a 1,000 year supply of fossil water under their sands. That’s called motivation. I don’t see the point in continuing.