Wasabi Stories vol.89: “Can you say your neighbors’ names?”


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“Can you say your neighbors’ names? “

Today’s story teller is an author Osamu Hashimoto.

Since last year, suicide rate has been increasing in Japan; probably because of high unemployment and social unrest.

How do people survive in the Japanese society which hard to live in?


“What the problem of today’s Japan is that people can’t feel ‘salvation’, I think.”


To put it in an extreme way, people in old times had the sense that something or someone like a god protects them.

By contrast, modern people don’t have such sense; everyday misery follows people in a creeping way.

It’s not simply to “wish for salvation in religions” but the subject can be anything.

Your family can be the closest savior to you.

The society that difficult live is hardly new; any period had toughness.

One feels anxiety when he/she feels that there is nothing to mentally support him/her.

In old times, because everyone experienced “poverty”, if they found someone sitting on a side of street alone, they asked “what happened?” and saved the person before he fell into the depths of despair.

But today’s Japan is cold that people don’t know their neighbors’ names.

How can we survive such present age?


To this question, Hashimoto explained his thought.

“Each one has each one’s life. Since this idea took root and there is no certain life, many people were confused and don’t know what to do with their lives. …By doing something that you believe you have to do, you may find your salvation.”


The NIKKEI Aug/26/2009  by Osamu Hashimoto (author)


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