Why hello there, Ladies and Gentlemen, so happy to find some people still reading some of my work. However, I, Mr. X, don’t exactly have a tale to share ,per say, but more of an inquiry that has bothered me as of late. Even till this morning I couldn’t help but ponder about it. This could be due to my current reading material(Danganronpa zero), or perhaps this could be due to the inevitable crossroads in my life and my stance on it. Considering my demographic I doubt I am the only one that can’t help but think about such trifles. Whether it is by a growing curiosity or by a persecuting stigma depends on your own personal background. Without further adieu, my fellow readers let us begin to deconstruct this inquiry.
“May you live in interesting times”, a famous Chinese proverb, but what exactly does it mean? The word “interesting” can be interpreted in many ways. Most people tend to interpret the word as a “good” thing. This can be a very dangerous interpretation because “interesting” does not necessarily mean good or bad. If I had to put it in an objective term, I would say “interesting” could be anything out of the ordinary. However, in that objectivity lies the subjection. The literal meaning of interesting is anything arousing curiosity and can catch your attention. With both of the definitions I have given you, the subjectivity should be obvious. How people tend to perceive things would depend on their background and livelihood. For example: My friend, Knucklehead, can go on and on how great of a thief Sly Cooper is. However, to a person like me who is a bit of an avid fan of Lupin the 3rd and Kaitou Kid, looking at Sly Coopers accomplishments may not seem all that amazing to me. Now, I know that is an apples and oranges comparison, but it should at least serve to prove my point. Take a poor man to rich house he will be amazed, take a sheltered rich kid to the slums and he might also be amazed. It’s all about understanding the difference in perception.
Now onto the meat of this inquiry. “May you live in interesting times” is actually a Chinese curse(look it up for historical background). In case some are wondering, the meaning for this curse is may you experience much trouble and disorder in your life. Remember, interesting doesn’t mean good or bad, just something very distracting to you. However, what is it actually distracting you from? During my first year in college in my philosophy(wasn’t actually called that though) class, my professor brought this discussion to our class. He asked us what the “interesting times” could be distracting us from. The class was silent, even I was at a loss as to what this could possibly mean. Until he said, “It is distracting us from ourselves.” my professor said in an obvious tone. Realizing that the class was at a loss the Professor continued “Think about it, if we are constantly being thrusted in those times when exactly will we have time for ourselves? To focus on what we see as important.” To be honest at the time I had trouble understanding this completely, but I believe I have a better understanding of it now.
To give a proper example: Say you want to learn Japanese, but you keep having to deal with issues such as paper deadlines, final exams, and family issue that you don’t have time to do what you want. In other words, these “interesting times” can prevent self-growth. Making it difficult to those who strive for self improvement. As luck would have it, I am a strong believer in self-improvement. I am always trying to improve a certain skill set from time to time. From my holmesian method of deduction to my training to become the next Caped Baldy. So to me and others sharing in passion, this curse could very well be the death of us! Or can it? See I have found it interesting that no one brings up the other part of the curse. “May you find what are you looking for” happens to be the other part(I am fully aware there is another but I just going to focus on this one). This part could mostly be explained by the whole “be careful what you wish for, because you just might get it” ploy. However, that is too obvious, so let us dig deeper.
How do you find what you are looking for? It’s a pretty standard question, but how indeed? If interesting is arbitrary, so can whatever you are looking for. Next question, how do we as people evolve? Before I answer I want to bring back my desire of self-improvement. What good is deductive reasoning if you don’t have a problem to exercise it? Why, train to become a Hero if there is no one to save? As much as I love self-improvement, I also love the thrill of the adventures that I happen to come across. I assure you, I am not the only one, and some of you reading will agree with me. So to answer the question, it is through these interesting times that we can learn more about ourselves and grow more from these experiences. For example: Through war we can find peace. Why do you think most people are against war? Because they have seen the result from it, and in turn strive for peace. What might come from this as a result might just be “what you are looking for”. Who knows what’s at the end of this road called life, maybe there isn’t a definite end. Though I am sure we all want those interesting experiences to happen to us along the way so we can share our tales of how we overcame them. It’s almost as if to say: “Only through these interesting times, may we actually find what we are looking for.”
Well that’s my inquiry on the famous Chinese curse. I am curious to how all of you interpret this curse. Please feel free to share your opinions with me. Do you agree with my analysis or does it leave a lot to be desired? Not exactly sure why this idea was plaguing me on this hot summer day(sheesh). Well, that’s it for me Ladies and Gentlemen. Before I go allow me to impart to you this dubious curse and potential blessing: May you all live in interesting times, and hopefully you all will find exactly what you are looking for. With that, I take my leave, in search for adequate shade. Feel free to share my work and I will see you in the next entry..