I have a suspicion that embodying the spirit of anime culture and the Japanese/Eastern traditions that inspire it are actually chock full of wise and life satisfying lifestyle options. I believe very strongly that the socioemotional aspects of anime are what separate the truly Great Ones from all the rest. When they grab you with a couple's undying love for each other that doesn't have one damn to give about death threats, the obstacles of distance or social pressure or anything else that stands in the way. "I will save her!!!"
What troubles me most in life is also what keeps me coming back to anime/manga at the end of a stressful day. It's this disturbing fact that people don't seem to put a whole lot of passion into life and they never work at having good friendships or real love. I personally have decided to blame an excessive amount of logic and reason! That's my diagnosis! Our minds are overloaded with rationality! I've decided to label this mental sickness as: Rational-itis! We don't need to reason our way into happiness and passion. In fact it's impossible because I believe that true fulfillment in life has absolutely positively no way of being born out of any algorithm or line of reasoning.
I noticed that in anime, people form relationships and life purposes without using any of what normal people in real life would consider appropriate and well reasoned conclusions! Think about this...one of my favorite shows which I am currently watching is an anime called Sword Art Online. It's an amazing story about the meaning of life, the nature of reality, and the pursuit of happiness. There are points throughout the show where I see the main characters enjoying happiness and love on what I would label as being on an arbitrary basis! When Kirito saves Lizbeth from a dragon, she asked him why he did so. His answer was that he figured it was better to die together than to live alone! Such a weird and petty reason and it led to Lizbeth coming to love Kirito. I think that a secret to life is contained in scenes like this.
You see reasons are compulsions. When you have long drawn out reasoned explanations for your life choices your heart gets lost in the mix. You find you're not really living for any happiness or fulfillment but on the basis of "have to's". When we use reason to reach conclusions about how the world works and figuring out what our options are it's very helpful. But far too many people try to reason out a justification for existence and for love and friendship too. This is where we go wrong. Asuna, one of the heroes repeatedly berated Kirito for resting on a field rather than fighting monsters so he could level up and defeat a boss who was keeping them from moving to the next world. Kirito's response was simple, unreasoned, and compelling enough to get Asuna to join him. He said it would be a waste to fight monsters in dungeons on such a beautiful day!
I believe that the best experiences in life are the one you make when you let go of the need to justify yourself. That's the heart of the message and the key principle I'm proposing. Logic is for living, but the source of life itself is your heart! I have often confused and shocked people with my behavior. Why would I give twenty dollars to a charity when everyone else gives singles? Why not!? It's a shame that good causes don't get more so I gave more!
Why do I show random displays of affection with random gifts, random hugs, and random text messages? Why the hell not?! Love is a good thing isn't it?! Should I not be spreading it so much?! Does it bother you?!
I think the greatest power humans have is that we can choose to arbitrarily, randomly, and profusely spread whatever kind of influence we want to. You don't keep a relationship going by working out some technique or special strategy with your silly "logic stuff". You want to know how to keep a friend or a lover? Here's my advice. If your special someone is near you now, give him/her a hug or kiss him/her even. If not send him/her an "I Love You." message or find some other way to express love. Do it right now, don't think about it, don't question it,...really don't freaking question it! Just...do...it! Why? Because you love him/her and you want to that's why! I'll tell you right now, if that's not good enough for you then my hopes for your relationship are very low...and I'm disappointed in you...
There is no call to justify happiness or love or friendship with any kind of reasoning. In fact, when we try to rationalize the experience of life itself, that experience becomes corrupted. We take ourselves waaaay too seriously nowadays and it's depressing us all... Strategy and logic are for winning conflicts and finagling the system but they are useless for your enjoyment of your life!
We need to create better life experiences. That why I'm going to make kimonos and a kotatsu. It's also why I go ice skating with friends. It's also why the woman I hopefully will fall in love with will be getting kissed and hugged and cuddled and doted on, on a daily basis. Because I don't need to justify these things. They're just a part of what a good life is so I'm going to do them all and much much more. There is no obligation in life but the obligations you choose to take on. There are no rewards but the rewards you seek to win. There is no happiness but the happiness you choose to embrace. You do this arbitrarily and freely. Life isn't going to fall together for you, what life is is already setup for you and what it will become is for you to determine. Do you know why people don't like work? Because they have to do it. Do you know why they love to play? Because when they play it's always just some bullshit they decided to do one day. Look back over your life and I guarantee that your best memories are the ones you didn't plan, they're the ones you didn't know would work out that perfectly, the ones that went Beyond your hopes and dreams.
In Amagami SS Junichi fell in love with a girl simply through good experiences. In truth I believe that as childish as young love stories are, where boy meets girls, boy embarrasses himself and girl finds it cute, lalalalala... then they fall in love...where was I going here? Oh yea! I think the lovey dovey romantic crap, born out of the characters crazy decision to choose love and friendship over everything is in truth the secret to living the best life. Why did Junichi go crazy looking for Kaoru when she didn't come to school? Because chasing after her just seemed like the most meaningful thing to do! Why share a bed? Because that's a way better experience than the boring meaningless, you can take the floor approach!
Look, certainly there are poor decisions that we want to avoid making. But I say we take more chances on life! I was so happy when I asked my server at one of my bar/restaurants about how she got the name Breezy. Somebody was reminded of the beach when they saw her! I disagreed and when I thought about it I declared her the Breeze that brings food and happiness and takes the plates away! Who's right and who's wrong? That's the wrong question my friends, we're just having fun and making friends and hopefully falling in love along the way too. You think I planned this post out with some secret scheme to get a bunch of people to read it? Well, sure I do want to have plenty of readers but in truth my stuff comes from the heart on impulse. I chose on a whim to write every post/article I have here. I don't know exactly what governs their success or failure in terms of popularity, but I know I enjoy the writing because I'm experiencing good living when I write stuff that just feels right. Maybe I'm wrong sometimes, but I can only learn as I go.
So off I go, I will make the happiest and most fulfilling choices I can, and if this article wasn't good enough for my readers then I'll simply move forward to the next one!