Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Does it not exist because it is invisible and insensible?

His father was not a human being.  His father was from the world after death.  His mother was a human being.  After his mother had given birth to him, she died from complication.  Nobody knew how they met, how their love romance was, and how they reached this vacant house where his mother gave birth to him.  The newborn baby’s name was “Kitaro”.  It means Monster Taro or Half-human Taro.

The above described a beginning part of “Ge Ge Ge No Kitaro”, popular cartoon of “Shigeru Mizuki”.  “Shigeru Mizuki” was the author who gave birth to this half-cute and half-mysterious monster boy who carried spirits of his father advocating that monsters and human beings were friends and could coexist.  “Kitaro”, protecting people, fought against monsters which tried to harm people and destroy human society.
The cartoon, “Ge Ge Ge No Kitaro” was not immediate success, but it gradually became popular among Japanese people who were thirsty on Japanese original stories and selected to be one of the most popular cartoon in 1960’s and 70’s.  “Ge Ge Ge No Kitaro” introduced many monsters and ancient legends which Japanese boys and girls were not so much exposed at that time.  They learned a lot on Japanese old fairly tale folklore stories from “Shigeru Mizuki” stories.  I remember I learned names and figures of Japanese original monsters eagerly.

“Shigeru Mizuki”, born in 1922, became popular as a cartoon author of Japanese Monster Cartoon in 1965.  He struggled between westernizing process of Japanese culture and traditional Japanese folklore, but he succeeded in maintaining good old Japan in his stories.  His works received many awards.  He received several medals for cultural contribution several times in his artistic activities.

Japanese TV is now broadcasting his autography in every morning and every night.  It is a TV program, so there may be amplification and imaginary part, but interesting was how “Shigeru Mizuki” views the world we all live.

In its program, his daughter, 10 years old at that time, had her friends teasing and fooling her saying that her father writes cartoons on the monsters supernatural beings, which do not exist.  She took it too serious and asked her father if he wrote cartoons, knowing all the monsters do not exist.  Her father answered her back in a calm and a nice way.

“My daughter, it is not correct to conclude that something is not existing only because one cannot see or touch.  There are lots of things that exist though they cannot be seen or touch.”  He continued “I have had many experiences in the war supernatural phenomenon, such as entire squadron could not go through some location without any reason.”  He explained to his young girl that he found there were supernatural activities in that area.  He added that one might not see or touch these supernatural beings.  One might still perceive them.  One may hear them.  One may feel smell them.  One may experience temperature changes.  Whenever these things happen, supernatural being is near.  His daughter shivered.  She said “Oh Dad, do not scare me.  It is getting dark here.  I am scared.”  “Oh my little girl”, he said, “if you do not believe in supernatural beings, why you are afraid?  It is a proof that you believe in these existences.”  His daughter smiled and said “Dad, I think you are right.”

I do not intend to display any opinion here.  I do not mean to make readers to accept my opinion either.  We all know there are things that we once believed not to exist, later scientifically explained.  We know there are things that have not been explained in science, logic, or reasons.  We also need to remember that these supernatural beings are giving hope, courage, and dream to our childhood like the daughter of this cartoon author, “Shigeru Mizuki”.

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