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Friday, April 1, 2011

Self Restraint

In a recent article, I read that the Japanese are practicing self restraint. This has taken many different forms. Downtown Tokyo has toned down the huge displays of neon lights. People attending ball games keep their expressions of excitement to a mild clapping of plastic horns rather than an obnoxious roar of enthusiasm. Stores that often blast the customer with jingles and shouting over the speakers have silenced. All of this uncharacteristic behavior has been focused towards self restraint. The suffering amongst the Japanese has sparked a movement for people to be less colorful, glamorous, and extravagant. Instead, acting conservative and moderate are in vogue. Many have compared this reaction to the recent disasters as being similar to how the Japanese reacted after World War Two. Erika and I have shared feelings of guilt for doing anything that brings happiness to us. Apparently, this is a common reaction to a catastrophic event. I can see that the only way through this is by doing something to help others. I’ve reached a point in my life where I’m learning that materialistic things have little importance, and that caring for others in need is what really matters the most. I think we could all use some self restraint.


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