I've noticed in my life that things get very very very predictable. Every freakin Sunday I see posts on facebook lamenting the coming of Monday once again! Every freakin time I watch the news someone's complaining about the economy and the rise of socialism! Every freakin time my dad wants a favor he'll come to me and say: "Hey...what're you doing?...what are your plans? ...can you help me for 5 minutes? ...when you have time?..." I swear it's the same damn script every time!!!!
The vast majority of life seems to be like one single song playing on an endless loop with the same beats and rhythms over and over and over and over and over again. In my opinion this is stagnation, but have you noticed where this miserable pattern does not exist? In Anime Of Course!
In anime I get sucked into a world where every single thing is both meaningful and progressive. What I mean by that is that it always seems that the characters are always moving forward, either to the next level or the next adventure or the next game or battle. No matter what there's always something new and bizarrely interesting around every turn of an anime adventure!
Take any good anime that comes to mind and think about this. Is there any point throughout the show that makes you go: "ahhhhh when is this gonna pick up again?! All he does is get up go to work, sweep floors and go home every episode!"(Or something to that effect?) No, we never have that problem. Take Bleach for example. You can easily divide it into it's multiple arcs to compile the complete adventure: Agent of the Shinigami, Soul Society Arc, Arrancar Arc, Hueco Mundo Arc, Fake Karakura Arc, Fullbring Arc, and now the Thousand Year Blood War Arc. Ichigo and friends lives are lived in a very smooth, progressive, and novel path that tests them, strengthens them, and keeps them energized with spirit.
I want soooooo badly to be able to live like that! But the problem is that we think we're supposed to live in a particular way...most people do anyway. For as long as I can remember my life has been structured on a repetitive cycle of repetitive cycle of repetitive cycle. I'm tired of finishing lunch with someone always saying: "Back to the grind..." BACK TO THE GRIND!? Blasphemy! The very existence of a "GRIND" is life draining crap! My mother would even remark all the time that she was: "Going back to jail..." referring to work. HEARTBREAKING!!!
I think that each of us is stuck in a world that has us caught in a trap of one part ignorance and one part fear of the dangers of the world. Now, it's only natural to be wary of all the numerous people, places, and things that could kill, maim, rob, slander, or otherwise screw with our lives. But it's that ignorance part that really kills us. You see, I theorize that the main reason we all seem to be stuck in our boring and habitual lifestyles is because we really don't know much more than we did yesterday, last week, last month, or even in previous years!
Life was fun as a kid, because we knew nothing and we were pretty much forced to explore and discover new things about the world every day. But as adults we supposedly "finish" learning. When you graduate school and get a job, supposedly you know everything you need to know and now you are a wise and mighty adult who has learned through the school of hard knocks how the world "really works"...WRONG!
The best times I've ever had were novel experiences. When I built that patio table it was an adventure! When I sewed a shirt for the first time that was a hell of an ordeal. When I make and wear my geta they'll be sure to turn some heads. This blog has been a fun experience too because every week I'm challenged to come up with something that will intrigue readers and keep them coming back for more!
Code Geass is one of my favorite anime's and one of the main themes that pushes Lelouch through one level after the next is the concept of advancement. Lelouch himself talks repeatedly about moving the world to the next stage(Lelouch: "I was sick to death of a world that couldn't be changed!") and at the end Kallen even remarks that the world was finally free of the past and moving into the future. I think the reason it was such a great anime is the fact that it was extremely relatable to real life because of the weaknesses, restrictions, and failures that everyone had to deal with. On top of that, the realism is imbued with the kind of hope and promises that we desperately need in real life. In real life people will give in and accept their helpless dead end day job lives...but in anime's like Code Geass there is no giving up. Instead it's all about: "Where do we go from here? What comes next?".
Those are the questions that we need to answer now. So life is boring and normal...where do we go from here? I say we need to start exploring. We need to throw ourselves into the world to see what we'll find for our hands to do and then get to work. We need to let go of the illusion that's been drilled into our heads of a safe perfect little life where everything is all under strict management! There is no ultimate goal to be achieved where everything's finished and life's all fine and good. If there were life would be incredibly boring. I must say I sympathize with Haruhi Suzumiya's quest for strange and exciting things because if what we have now is all we have then...what a pathetic boring deal!
I think Mayuri Kurotsuchi's speech on perfection is probably the absolute best way to describe what I'm getting at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OqIjlResgos
There's the answer! We all have to become scientists! Scientists of life itself! We have to explore, we have to experiment, we have to pursue new knowledge and abilities without hoping to ever finish! The opposite even because we'll be in ecstasy within our daily adventures and we won't want them to ever end with perfection. That's why conflict is entertaining to us. It's also why every single anime that we love is centered around problems to solve and enemies to fight. I can tell you from experience that when an anime I absolutely love comes to an end I actually get a little depressed for a while. Why? Because the happy ending isn't so happy after all. Mainly because while it may have been happy, it is still an ending. Endings suck...I want more and more and more! I want to live all the way up to my death and I don't want to stop living until I truly have nothing left. Perfection is meaningless, and so our daily routines intended to be the go to patterns that serve us best at getting through life are also meaningless. And they're not as good for us as we thought.
If it wasn't for constant learning and creativity this...
...would never have been made into this:
And in turn my blog would have lacked the material to even write this post! You see the connections here? When we start exploring and discovering we get all kinds of engaging and invigorating experiences and memories to last us for generations! I'll make my traditional Japanese clothing like the hakama, kimono, and geta and then I can even post those pictures here on the blog and write a few posts about all of that stuff. Then maybe I could engage the community for ideas and perhaps get some idea sharing and resource sharing as well! There you see!? I came up with all of that right on the spot right now and I'm having immense fun writing this piece right now! Unfortunately I'm about to bring it to a close...but rather than stress about whether or not this is a perfect blog, I'm going to accept it a a part of a never ending adventure that's only just getting started, and I'll move on to the next one. I wish you all good luck and ask that you wish the same for me!