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Posted in: Poll on number of male virgins in Japan not all bad news See in context

I was quite active in dating in my late teens and early twentys and got married at 29 and divorced at 33. After that I never went on a date until now at 44. At first I thought I was disillusioned with love but actually maybe I am just contented that I have done all that there is to do. So, perhaps guys or gals who stay single because they are already satisfied with what they already have or had?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Magazine’s checklist for ideal girl has whopping 23 points See in context

Do westerners like Americans and Europeans, whose societies are just as advance and sophisticated, also developed the same level of fuss and demanding taste like the Japanese?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: WWII sex slavery indescribable wrong: ex-PM Murayama See in context

A truly strong man he is.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

Posted in: Driving force See in context

Now I understand the philosophy of Toyota, it is not entirely about the male ego, it is about any ego that work the best.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Posted in: Is Abe headed for his next health crisis? See in context

I notice that bi-partisan politics around the world often conjure up situation where parties from both sides often need to go one up on each other. After awhile, the party which remained standing often found itself like the cat which got chased up a tree and while up there, the cat doesn't know how to get down. At the end, someone may need to bring a ladder.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Posted in: Elite universities no longer mean as much to students See in context

To collate the things I have said above, Zen is to do what is naturally best given a certain prevailing conditions. Zen is not 'killing is not killing' or 'stealing is not stealing'; true, Buddha did say something like this but this is true only if you are doing it after reaching a very advance state of cognition/being when action does not produce a karma and when action always give more benefits to everyone. But this is very advance material and should be taught and practised by the real master, I am just beginning to scratch the surface only. In the meantime, we should just try to do what is generally regarded as good and reasonable given the imperfect and unbalanced world we live in. If we do not allow some flexibility in our lives, we will pin ourselves to a dead end corner one day and become very extreme.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Elite universities no longer mean as much to students See in context

By the way, 'doing what is best given the prevailing conditions' does not mean doing what is wrong and unreasonable, otherwise people will do anything to meet their goals and Zen Buddhism would become an evil religion. So, is this the source of confusion with regards to the meaning of Zen?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Abe says China's prosperity rests on trust, not tensions See in context

I think the main reason why China build up its military is because they need more protection for their expanding economy. If you have plenty of wealth in your house then surely you will need more security isn't it?

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Posted in: Elite universities no longer mean as much to students See in context

I believe Zen or Satori could also means doing what is best given a set of prevailing conditions. Younger people in other countries got softer and more complacent because they feel that it is no longer rewarding to work hard I guess. In the past if you put in a dollar of effort, you may receive 2 dollars of reward; but now the rate of return is diminishing and in some cases, yielding a negative return. So given such a circumstances, there is no harm in consuming less but take on lesser stress in life. The other phenomena which a councilor in a youth center told is that young people these can get most of their satisfaction from the internet in the form of game, movies, music and social networking. As such, there do not have such a strong motivation to get the real stuff if you know what I mean. Do you think this intimate relationship with the 2-D world has in any way affected the characteristics of the adults too?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Toyota remains world's top selling car maker for 2nd year See in context

I know that the bosses of successful companies like Toyota, Softbank and others like the idea of the 'male ego'; the Japanese militarist in the past also like to display what is equivalent to the 'male ego'. The problem is, one version of it can create value to shareholders, employees and customers but the other version of the 'male ego' tends to destroy value. So, are we foreigners missing out on a very subtle difference of the Japanese version of the 'male ego' ?

-10 ( +0 / -10 )

Posted in: Deciding whether or not to help a crying child is complicated in Japan See in context

I guess it is just a matter a bad luck for the guy on the train for being ill treated for doing something good; or maybe he is being lucky because if he had persisted, he may open up a pandora's box of further problems, the young girl on the train may turn up to have deeper problems and require more of his assistance which he can't cope effectively. We shouldn't just focus on one case to draw conclusion, there are many other cases where good deeds are done and appreciated. So it is always good to try and do positive things, just make sure the deeds are within our ability to fullfil, if you can't do the big ones, doing the small ones are just as good.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Head of NPO promoting motherhood arrested for beating his wife See in context

As a foreigner, I tend to get only snap shots here and there about Japan and I am finding it quite difficult to join all the dots together. Through JT's news and the comments, I always find Japan to be full of contradictions and in fact a few years ago Japanese even used the word 'fake' to describe the year that was. I understand that Buddhism is quite a prominent religion in Japan and the philosophy of Zen Buddhism is always 'things can be this or that and things can also be neither this nor that', so my question is does this confuse the people in Japan?

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Posted in: Sundance kid See in context

She looks like Seiko Matsuda in 47 ronin, am I right?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: ANA apologizes over racial stereotyping in new TV commercial See in context

I know the meaning of this ad - that the modern Japanese are caught between the traditional and western culture. So the rubber disguise is a metaphor for the sort of hybrid culture in Japan.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Posted in: Foreign men sound off on difficulties of having a Japanese wife See in context

I didn't know that Japanese ladies are so cold, I know that they are quite friendly and definitely fussy.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Posted in: Academics apologize for ‘robot’ cleaning woman cover See in context

Maybe the socially correct image to use is some type of hybrid in order not to offend both genders. Either lady-like men or men-like women, is that why Japan auto makers are so into hybrid technology? - because they are constantly forced to think and behave in the middle or compromised way?

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Posted in: 5 fun facts about the flag of Japan See in context

Why are countries so fond of using the sun as a symbol for their flag? China has five stars (suns), USA has many more and some countries use both the sun and the moon.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: The dreaded party season: Some embarrassing office party mistakes See in context

What I meant was, I was incessantly hustled into doing something outrageous, anyway it was really quite fun to see a group of 50+ year old samurai dancing on karaoke tables. Haha...I always wonder if people in Japan also get the same version.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: The dreaded party season: Some embarrassing office party mistakes See in context

I used to work for a company which is a joint venture with another Japanese company and during a company party hosted by the Japanese management I attented, I was incessantly harassed to do something crazy. I was very shocked to see during the party, how some of the usually samurai-looking senior Japanese officer acted in an inconceivable manner.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Abe wants to explain Yasukuni visit to China, S Korea See in context

Acceptance of apology or compensation does not right something that is fundamentally wrong. To whitewash history of the war means that you do not honor your apology and repentance in the mind of others. On the other hand, facing up to it does not make Japan a lesser nation, look at Germany.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

Posted in: Abe wants to explain Yasukuni visit to China, S Korea See in context

After reading all comments, I got the idea that Japan is actually sorry for what they did during the war but are unable to openly and directly admit so. The question is what can other countries do in order to make Japan feel comfortable in making a full admission of its past. This is important because other countries may feel that Japan is being very arrogant.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

Posted in: Why does Japan love fictional characters so much? See in context

My initial assessment of this phenomena is that I thought Japanese are in a constant state of dilema and contradiction so much so that they need to root for or fixate on something nice. Japan is a democratic country and people in a well developed democratic country tend to be more knowledgable, sophisticated and individualistic. But in Japan, they are not allowed to be too individualistic because it run counter to their traditional conformist culture. So they are often in some sort of limbo, they are not sure if they should follow what their logic tells them or do what is required by culture. When people can't solve an impossible puzzle in life, they may resort to escaping to or fixate their mind on something else, in this case, nice fictional characters. The issue is, in doing so, some people may become whimsy and develop the habit of constantly imagining nice things to amuse themselves. It is often said that Japanese spend a great deal of time at work but despite of this they are not the most productive people in the world. The reason could be the whimsy nature of some workers actually distract them and cause them to spend a great deal of time doing non work related activities.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

Posted in: Elderly couple found dead in apparent murder-suicide See in context

It is so sad to hear this, after toiling the entire life this is what you get at the end, hope they rest in peace.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Akie Abe not afraid to speak her mind See in context

I don't mean to pry into other people's personal lives but I feel that having children can help people experience a more diverse form of love and kindred spirit and it is important for politicians. Japan's recent aggressive stance in international politics got many overseas audience like myself a bit concerned, we are trying to understand the government's point of view, motivation or problems from different angles.

-8 ( +2 / -10 )

Posted in: Akie Abe not afraid to speak her mind See in context

Oh good, the PM's wife, I read from WSJ that they do not have children, and is there a chance that maybe the PM is treating political goals as a substitution for children? Sometimes people to do things to make up for what they don't have, it is a good thing to treat political and national goals as something very dear, but there is always a chance that he might get too sentimental don't you think?

-9 ( +3 / -12 )

Posted in: Gov't promises equality, but women find few jobs See in context

I heard that women around the world in general are doing better than men in both school and work. I guess this is because women are made to behave more like men and in so doing, they adopt male characteristics. What this mean is that women actually have a bigger toolbox of values which they can use in handling problems. But men on the other hand are not encouraged to adopt women's values. Maybe that is why men find it more difficult to handle issues where reconciliation is involved. Men are strong outside but weak inside, women are weak outside but stronger inside. The modern day economy also seems to require more communication, like the internet and multimedia, so I think this change in the structure of the economy seems to favour values or skill sets that are traditionally the domain of women.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Chinese cook rescued after hot-air balloon crashes near disputed isles See in context

Yes, more love and friendship is needed by both sides.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Posted in: Cabinet minister visits Yasukuni shrine See in context

Oh I see, many right-wingers actually have family background in the military. I can understand the burden of history they are shouldering, it must be quite a dilemma - on the one hand you need to uphold family honour but on the other hand you find it difficult to deny logic and facts. This is not good in the long term because you do not know which values or roots to grow, and if you do not have deep roots you will become volatile and easily swayed by external events. This is a difficult situation, we must find a positive way to solve this problem.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Review: Reeves comes off bogus in 'Ronin' See in context

Yeah, the story line is a bit weak in my opinion, the relationship and emotions in the movie are not very convincing. I was fooled by the clever editing of the trailer.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Japanese 'religion of the home' alive and well, says scholar See in context

From the Buddhist/Confucianist perspective, these deities or pagan gods or angels perform an important role of bridging the gap between human and the ultimate enlightenment. Because human's state of being is too far apart from the ultimate enlightenment, there are what I call 'intermediate heavens' where we can go because the environment there is more conducive for cultivation. The ultimate awakening requires no less than total eradication of our 7 sins, can you imagine how difficult that can be.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

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