the gift of surrender

"The Japanese are the last people who stand in reverence of the natural world. Rather than attempting to eradicate it, they have successfully adapted themselves to it. They have offered themselves to it, have come to terms with it.

"I am reminded of Robert Frost’s words about those who „found salvation in surrender.” There is something larger than man, though this the West denies. It is nature itself, the way things are, have been, and always will be.

"The white man’s most daring and foolhardy feat is mere rapine. All of his glory is merely brutality. He does not know how to live the world he was bron into and so he will destroy it and build another that will destroy him.

"Japan has this gift of surrender. Shikata ga nai – it can’t be helped. That lovely and accepting phrase. 


Donald Richie, Japan The Lateral View