What stronger love than adultery

Then they had a long discussion, talked about how to rid themselves of the need for hiding, for deception, for living in different towns and not seeing each other for long periods. How could they free themselves from these unbearable bonds? “How? How?” he asked, clutching his head. “how?” And it seemed that, just a little more – and the solution would be found, and then a new, beautiful life would begin; and it was clear to both of them that the end was still far, far off, and that the most complicated and difficult part was just beginning.

Anton Chekhov, The lady with the dog

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Creativity in Japanese schools

“It seems to me that juku are sending a message to kids that they really don’t have to pay attention at regular school because they’re going to learn the same thing at juku later. That’s one problem. Another is that Japanese children aren’t rewarded for independent thinking. I remember going to class one time and the teacher was saying, ” Okay, everyone, let’s be more creative. What are the things you need to do to be creative? Write them on the blackboard.

Ezra Vogel, “What happened to number one?” in Reimagining Japan

 

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Kumon means suffering btw. The face tells it all.

Juku is basically tuition centers, or cram schools for entrance examinations. These criticisms can be applied to the Singapore education system as well. It is hard to inculcate creativity though. There needs to be a deeper change in culture in order to encourage creativity.

More about how tuition centers are ridiculous some other time.

Japanese societal pressures at home

An eerie family drama, it became even more so by being staged at the father’s graveside in a gesture of filial piety or atonement for the daughter’s inability to carry out her responsibilities. Pushing her mother in her wheelchair to the cemetery at dusk, she opened a bottle of hydrogen sulphide she’d concoted and brought there to kill them both. But while the daughter died, the mother survived albeit in a far worsened condition, having spend the night in a blinding rain before being discovered the following morning. … Never complaining nor letting on that she’d sunk into such despair, Yukiko had seemed the consummate caregiver: selfless, cheerful, compassionate – the perfect daughter. Too good to be true until the goodness wore (her) out.

Precarious Japan, Anne Allison

 

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Ah yeah now I remember the name of the book and author for the previous post on Japan

Should Japan accept more immigrants?

“The current system is cleverer than it seems. The thinking underlying the system is: “We don’t give a lot of work permits, so foreigners work illegally, and if they get in trouble we can send them home very easily.” So foreigners come over as students — fairly smart people come in — and they work illegally. They probably get lower pay because they are illegal; and if they do anything wrong, they get sent home. It’s unfair, and it’s illegal, but it’s a better system than people will acknowledge openly because they don’t like to admit that they are doing things illegally. Some say Japan must admit many more immigrants. I’m not persuaded that’s absolutely necessary.”

Ezra Vogel, “What happened to number one?” in Reimagining Japan

 

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JK that’s not Japan. Construction in most places (outside of Singapore and maybe Dubai) is still done by locals mostly. 

 

The problem of illegal immigrants is like prostitution — something that is outwardly deplorable, but something that law enforcement has to turn a blind eye to because they serve a need. Sometimes, the two overlap.

Wealth as a multiplier

Since wealth is a personality multiplier, it is also an experience multiplier. If you are miserable when you are middle class, you will likely be even more miserable when you are wealthy because all the mental states that cause you to be miserable, such as greed, cruelty, paranoia, and inner turmoil, get multiplied. Similarly, if you’re happy when you’re middle class, you’re likely to be even happier wealthy, for the same reason; mental states that brought you happiness – such as generosity, kindness, and inner peace – multiply, thereby multiplying happiness.

Chade Meng Tan, Joy on Demand

 

In other words, having a lot of money wouldn’t change your life — not the direction of it at least.

The difference between genius and idiocy

Creationists crowd cyberspace every bit as effectively as evolutionists, and extend their minds just as fully. Our trouble is not the overall absence of smartness but the intractable power of pure stupidity.

Daniel Levitin, The organized mind

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Funnily, that’s how I pictured a creationist would look like.

…is that genius has limits.

Has social media stunted our ability to be social?

Social networking provides breadth but rarely depth, and in-person contact is what we crave, even if online contact seems to take away some of that craving. In the end, the online interaction works best as a supplement, not a replacement for in-person contact. The cost of all of our electronic connectedness appears to be that it limits our biological capacity to connect with other people.

Daniel Levitin, The Organized Mind

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(Actually this might have been from Aziz Ansari’s Modern Romance, I am not sure. Poor record keeping sorry)