Worlds of Light

Go! Princess Precure

This topic contains 40 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of Maxie Hikari Hikari Maxie 2 years, 7 months ago.

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  • #228281
    Profile photo of Maxie Hikari
    Hikari Maxie
    Participant

    I was inspired by the splendid article on Happy Innocent Musume Senshi (I am still not sure who Cure Dolly is, though I have my suspicions…) to check out the first episode, and I do think it looks really good. I am just wondering if we are all aware of the gigantic Utena reference in the opening few minutes.

    (You only need to watch the little ‘fairytale’ bit, not the whole thing.)

    As you can see, the prince’s whole appearance, his words of comfort and inspiration to the little girl, and the giving of a magical token are all so similar there is almost no chance of this being a quincy, but the young heroine of Utena draws a rather different conclusion from the experience…

    Most of the target audience of young girls will probably not have seen Utena, but I think this is a very deliberate reference. They are not sneakily copying and trying to be subtle about it, they are openly calling our attention to it in every detail. The story of a schoolgirl who wants to be a princess is being set against the story of a schoolgirl who wants to be a prince. I wonder if there is going to be a philosophical message that either echoes or opposes that of Utena. There are probably as many philosophical interpretations of the latter as there are maids who have watched it, but it contains both great darkness and great light, so it will be interesting to see what Princess Precure has to say about it.

    Please forgive me if this has already been said, I just could not resist mentioning it.

    PS. Given that Kanata is a unisex name , shall we just decide Kanata-sama is a brunette princess? She certainly looks the part…

  • #228650
    Profile photo of Sushuri
    Sushuri
    Moderator

    Kanata‐sama really does look the part, doesn’t she? No spoilers, but in one of the Great Four Precure series we find a very, very kakkoii otoko who turns out to be not otoko at all. Sadly, as Kanata‐sama has an otoko no seiyuu (voice actor) that isn’t likely to be the case here. But as you say she looks much more like a brunette than the other thing so let’s just go with that!

    For some reason I never really haaku dekiru‘ed Utena. Maybe because I had no bridge to the series. I am not sure quite what its salient points are (other than Utena herself being chou kakkoi, of course). But you are clearly right. This part is deliberately referring to Utena, isn’t it?

    Some other points (not especially profound but interesting) about Go! Princess Precure:

    Dress is much nicer, it seems. If there was one thing about the best Precures that wasn’t very happy it was the dress. Very West‐Telluri‐influenced modern Japanese teen dress. One of the areas in which Japan R not us. This seems much nicer. One of the precures (from the quick glimpse of her and the fact that she is the same colors as the third Precure: I am not spoilerizing myself with the released information on fan sites) seems to be the standard too‐casual‐for‐Lilian‐Noble character (let’s hope she is in uniform or Precure most of the time). The others seem to have charming dress sense.

    Don’t we all love gokigenyou? We use it when talking Japanese, of  course. For those wondering what it actually means, 機嫌 kigen is one’s mood or feeling. Gokigen is of course the honorific o/go but also indicates good mood or spirits (older English good cheer). The you is a wish. So “I wish you honored good cheer” less literally “I hope this day finds you in good spirits”.

  • #228773
    Profile photo of Sushuri
    Sushuri
    Moderator

    From Elefarya‐chei:

    Might be days until I get to the big ordie, but I just wanted to mention that I’ve just seen episode 1 and I am impressed so far. One thing I noticed is that they paid very careful attention to the way small children play in this one. The hyperrealistic perfume and key are obviously meant to be duplicated by a toy that will look just like them, and the extra long process of curtsies, catchphrases, twirls, and locking and unlocking are just the sorts of play little girls adore. Playing along will be so *satisfying*! Wee Maid is going to love it. Weren’t the creators kind to their beloved audience?

    If it is convenient, please pass this along.
    Gokigenyou,
    Rosamunda Elefarya

  • #228775
    Profile photo of Maxie Hikari
    Hikari Maxie
    Participant

    I do love gokigenyou – even more now you have explained what it means – and am delighted that you use it here!

    Yes, I see what you mean that two of the three girls seem to be very racinated dressers even when they are out of henshin mode. I am rather disappointed about the third girl because her star-themed princess outfit is far and away my favourite. Fashionable model-type characters do not appeal to me at all, although I do like Sei in Maria-sama ga miteru, who I suspect you are referring to here! Come to think of it, Utena is also ‘too cool for school’ in the specific sense of refusing to wear the girls’ uniform and being decidedly pert about it, but she is a good student in other respects.

    Utena is actually a magical girl series, complete with philosophical battles. Utena finds herself at a school where elite students (including another, possibly even more kakkoii brunette) fight secret duels for possession of the Rose Bride, Anthy, a mysterious Estrenne blonde who holds within her ‘the power to revolutionise the world’. Whoever wins the duels becomes ‘engaged’ to Anthy and Anthy becomes totally subservient to them, appearing to have no will of her own. When Utena stands up for a friend’s honour she gets embroiled in the duels and wins Anthy basically by accident. One of the loveliest moments is when Anthy meets Utena at the school gates and says to her, ‘From now on, I am your flower’ (あなたの花です).

    Utena strongly disapproves of treating Anthy like a possession and tries to encourage her to be her own person – but if Utena doesn’t keep fighting for possession of her, Anthy will fall into the hands of one of the other duellists, each of whom, to different extents and for different reasons, would just use her. Each duellist has a different false philosophy, which Utena defeats. However, they are not villains, just troubled and wrapped up in their own problems. The real villain is the one manipulating all this, whose identity slowly becomes apparent to Utena, and whom she will ultimately have to fight if she is ever to free Anthy.

    There is a TV show, a movie, and a manga. The TV show and the movie are generally agreed to be the best artistically, but the only one I can wholeheartedly recommend is the manga, especially for blondes. In the anime versions, while Utena herself is an excellent model of courage, chivalry, innocence, devotion, kakkoii and ‘how to be a brunette’ in general, she moves through a world full of cynicism, manipulation, bitterness and very dark sexual themes, and it does taint her, although she comes down heroically on the side of Good in the end.

    The manga, however, while it lacks the overt intemorphic romance, is pure and innocent and has a completely different message from the anime versions. The anime thoroughly deconstructs the archetypes of the prince, princess, witch, and damsel in distress, and blurs the lines between good and evil. The manga draws clear lines between good and evil and upholds the archetypes: princes are princes, including and especially when they are really brunette princesses. This was the first version and was written by Saito Chiho-san, then adapted for the kinnies by Ikuhara Kunihiko-san, who I think is a genius but himself very torn between cynicism and innocence.

    I am not sure if I have done it justice with this summary – any other pettes who have read/seen it, feel free to chime in!

  • #228853
    Profile photo of Rose
    Rose
    Participant

    Hikari-san,

    Thank you for your explanation of the deeper metaphysical and philosophical principles underlying Revolutionary Girl Utena. It is a series that I have been interested in looking more into for quite some time now but unfortunately have been putting off for another time. Your recommendation makes me feel much more keen to go ahead and delve into it!

    I must say that I really enjoyed watching the first episode of Go! Princess Precure. One of my initial impressions was indeed how much more wholesome the choice of dress in this season is in comparison to previous Precure seasons. I hope this remains a standard throughout the season! I also loved how reminiscent of Heartcatch Precure this series was in so many ways.

    I also really appreciate the theme of dreams that seems as though it will become a core idea underlying this season, especially after reading Cure Dolly’s post on the explanation of dreams in language and how it relates to both English and Japanese (which I found to be quite fascinating!) Nightmares are certainly aberrations of the purity and goodness that is inherent in dreaming, which relates back to the idea that darkness is an aberration of Truth, Purity, and Goodness. It cannot stand on its own.

     

    You two are not the only ones who thought that Kanata-sama was a brunette princess! I think even Cure Flora was astonished to find that Kanata-sama is a masculi, based on her reaction!

     

     

  • #230742
    Profile photo of Maxie Hikari
    Hikari Maxie
    Participant

    Honored Miss Rose, I am so glad you found my explanation helpful! I should be interested to know your thoughts if you do decide to watch Utena.

    And I am glad Sushuri-chei and I were not the only ones who thought that about Kanata-sama! I just watched that part of the kinnie again and… you are quite right, it seems Cure Flora did too! Hee!

    The funniest thing happened this morning. I woke up with the words ‘Haruka no Kanata’ very clearly in my mind. I know haruka kanata means ‘far in the distance’ but I am not sure Haruka no Kanata means anything other than ‘Haruka’s Kanata’. Perhaps my unconscious thinks Kanata-sama is an appropriate brunette model? Clearly not afraid to aim high…

  • #231629
    Profile photo of Yuriko Rill
    Yuriko Rill
    Participant

    I just finished carefully watching the first Go! Princess Precure with jimaku, and I have to say that I love it!

    Heeee….the transformations and the opening and closing songs alone are enough to keep my interest!  Gokigenyou! Gokigenyou! Gokigenyou! (I think I will be singing that all day).

    I am watching several Precure series with my brunette spouse, and she is reluctant to add more to the mix.  We are almost finished with Happiness Charge! (thank all goodness…I have never been bored during any other Precure finale, and I have to say I am rather bored with this one.  Still it is good Japanese practice, and I might as well see how it ends.)  Given the choice between DokiDoki and Go Princess Precure (to replace Happiness Charge), she was more interested in DokiDoki.  Hee…I guess Cures like Cure Sword and Cure Ace are more interesting to her than Cure Flora and Cure Twinkle.

    As sad as I am not to be watching Go Princess Precure with her, it has opened a door (and may be Fairy inspired).  If I am not watching it with her, there is no reason to watch with English subtitles at all, so….this will be the very first Precure that I will be watching without seeing the English subtitles at all (or having previously watched with English subtitles).  I am rather excited about that!

  • #231630
    Profile photo of Maxie Hikari
    Hikari Maxie
    Participant

    How exciting, Rill-san! I have to say you are not missing much – they are translating ‘Gokigenyou’ as ‘Bonjour’, which goes clunk even to my dull ears!

    • #231663
      Profile photo of Yuriko Rill
      Yuriko Rill
      Participant

      Oh my.  I wonder if that is the same across all of the translations.  Not all translations are the same, so it is worthwhile to find the better ones.  By better, I mean the ones that translate closer to the original with less “localization.”  So far, the best translations I have found are from Doremi.  The Aesir-Anxious translation of Smile Precure is pretty awful, and Commie also “localizes” a lot….which often means adding curse words and other vulgar language at times, but even when not vulgar, coarsens the shows a lot more than necessary.

      Every now and then, I have seen vulgar language in Doremi translations…but much, much, much less, and their translations tend to be as close as possible while still be understandable to West Telluri.  Cure Dolly wrote a wonderful article about the difficulties with translation, which can be found here.

      • #231664
        Profile photo of Maxie Hikari
        Hikari Maxie
        Participant

        Ahhh! Thank you, and may I be the first to compliment you on your beautiful icon!

        • #231723
          Profile photo of Yuriko Rill
          Yuriko Rill
          Participant

          Heee…thank you!  It is still early to tell…but I think that Cure Flora is going to be my favorite of the Pink Precures yet!  Often the Pink Precures (especially the blonde ones) are a little too genki for me.  Oh, they are enjoyable…but they tend to be a little tiring!  Cure Flora is certainly genki, but she is a little calmer than the usual Pink blonde Precures, and she is SO unabashedly and wonderfully blonde!

        • #231727
          Profile photo of Sushuri
          Sushuri
          Moderator

          My compliments too on your delightful new avvie, honored Rill-san.

          I think my favorite pink Precure is still Cure Happy. I don’t seem to mind chou genki. I didn’t like it in Happiness Charge but that was because it all felt silly and trivial, not because of the genki itself.

        • #231729
          Profile photo of Yuriko Rill
          Yuriko Rill
          Participant

          Wakarimashita.

          Heee…on another matter…I just LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the doily framed scenes!

          Oh dear….heee…I really AM interested in the story line, and I love forward to the deeper metaphysics that will (hopefully) be there…but heeee…these other things are important too, I think!

        • #231761
          Profile photo of Maxie Hikari
          Hikari Maxie
          Participant

          Of course, I am quite unschooled in this topic, but I think there is a big difference between genki presented with loving amusement and appreciation of the light it brings, and genki presented as a kind of appealing idiocy.

        • #231763
          Profile photo of Yuriko Rill
          Yuriko Rill
          Participant

          Oh dear.  Heee…there was no real criticism implied anywhere (well, except for perhaps of Happiness Charge).  It is just a matter of slight difference in personal taste between myself and Sushuri-chei.  I am quite fond of Cure Happy (and the other blonde Pink Precures).  Being chou genki is actually a part of the Function of the Pink Precure, really…as the ganbariyasan of the group.  Still, heee…..well….I like Cure Flora a LOT!

          Cure Lovely (from Happiness Charge) did improve during the season, and as Sushuri-chei said, being chou genki was the least of the difficulty with her character.  Actually, her character turned out fine…just well….the series overall….  Anyways, I am just glad there seems to be a promising Precure this year!

        • #231764
          Profile photo of Sushuri
          Sushuri
          Moderator

          Oh I don’t think any of us were disagreeing. Provided the genki is good genki it is good, but some people enjoy more of it than others!

          趣味は議論にならない。

          しゅみ は ぎろん に ならない

          Which is Japanese for

          De gustibus non est disputandum.

          Which is Latin for “In matters of taste there can be no arguments”. Because after all we are dealing with personal taste and not either fact or Principle.

          I find it odd that such a simple and obvious truth seems to escape many modern West Telluri.

        • #231795
          Profile photo of Maxie Hikari
          Hikari Maxie
          Participant

          Please forgive me if I sounded argumentative, I really did not mean to!

          I love that expression, Sushuri-chara, thank you!

        • #231798
          Profile photo of Yuriko Rill
          Yuriko Rill
          Participant

          Oh no, you did not sound argumentative at all, Honored Hikari-chei.  I was just worried about how I might have sounded, especially in text, where you could not see or hear the fond amusement in my voice or face, when I was talking about the blonde Pink Precures.  I saw how it could be misunderstood, so I wanted to clarify…that was all.

        • #231799
          Profile photo of Maxie Hikari
          Hikari Maxie
          Participant

          Thank you for your reassurance, Rill-san! Please do not worry, you sounded perfectly lovely as always. I was really complaining about certain anime (mostly not shoujo anime, I might add) where genki is presented in a way I find… icky. There was one in particular that I started watching because I was so struck by the image of this hauntingly kawaii little angel:

           

          …only to find that she (along with all the other girls, actually) was presented as just unwatchably… stupid. Her antics were embarrassing to watch – she honestly behaved like a toddler. The viewer was clearly meant to find it endearing, but also to feel superior to her.

          Serves me right for watching kinnies for masculi, really, doesn’t it? I think most shoujo material presents genki as somewhere between amusingly relatable and actively inspiring, which I love.

  • #231633
    Profile photo of Sushuri
    Sushuri
    Moderator

    How exciting!

    I haven’t used English subtitles at all for a long time now. While at first you end up not knowing some things (I think I am past that stage now, at least for Precure) it is very much like the real experience of a smallish child watching.

    Small children can’t “cheat” and get it explained in another language. Of course they can ask their elder sisters to explain it another way in their own language. But so can you. If you ask about anything (in Japanese) I will try to clarify it for you in Japanese.

    But really it is so exciting. I think there is a special magic in only knowing something in Japanese. Of course in your case being able to share it at home is important too. But I am thinking this is a fairy gift for you!

    • #231724
      Profile photo of Yuriko Rill
      Yuriko Rill
      Participant

      Oh, thank you for your generous offer, honored Sushuri-sensei.

      Heee…hopefully, by the time we get to the complicated, explanation heavy episodes, my Japanese will have improved enough so that I can understand them.  Usually the complicated ones do not come until about episode 20 or so (although there have been some series where the come as early as episode 10…I think that was the case with DokiDoki).  Yes, I will ask you if I get stuck, and that is such a good idea to explain it in Japanese.

  • #235174
    Profile photo of Maxie Hikari
    Hikari Maxie
    Participant

    I am so glad that Happy Innocent Musume Senshi is active again. I really enjoyed the latest post on there. Thank you to Cure Yasashiku (whoever you are) for your hard work on it! Go! Princess really is rather magically perfect, isn’t it?

    Speaking of which, I have been obsessing over ‘tsuyoku, yasashiku, utsukushiku’ and discovered that it was created by the revered Fukuda Keiko-sensei as a motto both for herself and for women’s judo. How fascinating that the motto of one of the Vikhelic arts should be used to describe the qualities of a true princess – and it works equally well in both cases. Fukuda-sensei explains here what she means by each of the three principles. I thought you all would particularly love the description of a beautiful heart.

  • #235306
    Profile photo of Sushuri
    Sushuri
    Moderator

    I am thinking the very long quietness of Musume Senshi has something to do with the absence of a real current Precure.

    That motto really is fascinating isn’t it. That a princesshood (princessity?) and vikhelic art should share qualities is natural from a Herthelan point of view since they are both quintessential Raihira archetypes: Raihira being the Noble and Warrior Estate (as Haiela is the Priestly and Intellectual Estate).

    Thank you so much for linking that valuable interview.

    The similarity to, and overlap with, the Takarazuka motto (kiyoku tadashiku utsukushiku) is also fascinating. Three of the Cures on Musume senshi took their names from the Takarazuka motto, and one of the others (Cure Yasashiku) has a name from the Go! Princess/juudou motto (I prefer the spelling closer to the Japanese as it reminds us that Juudou is a Way). I don’t think anyone was aware of this motto at the time. How interesting that we were thinking along similar lines anyway!

    I hope you don’t mind, but I was interested in your use of “obsess”. It is hard to avoid that word in modern English, isn’t it? It is a quasi‐pathological term, of course as are many terms for states of mind, which underlines the chilling but telling fact that the post‐pseudomythos “science” of psychology ‐ which purports to describe human mentality as a whole was based on pathology.

    Freud, while revolutionizing the human self‐conception, prefaced one of his more important books with the quotation from Virgil:

    “If I cannot move Heaven, then I will stir up Hell”

    Are there better ways of saying this. English doesn’t seem friendly to them if there are. In Japanese we can say kodawaru, which sometimes has a negative meaning (over‐involved, over‐fussy) but doesn’t always, and is not pathological in implication.

    Much nicer though, I think, especially when describing involvement or strong interest in something good, is 夢中 muchuu, which can describe either a short term state of being  absorbed in something (a sight, a feeling, an activity etc) or a longer term interest/absorption. It is not usually used in a negative way like kodawaru.

    The meaning of the kanji is literally dream‐interior.

  • #235713
    Profile photo of Maxie Hikari
    Hikari Maxie
    Participant

    Oh, of course it does make sense in Herthelan terms – thank you for pointing that out! It is funny that I keep being so drawn to Raihira archetypes – logically I would think I would be Haiela to the max (hee!) since I have decidedly more aptitude for intellectual and spiritual pursuits than I do for leadership or the Vikhelic arts (despite having studied three different ones – if you take my natural affinity for language learning and imagine the exact opposite of that, you will have some idea of how hard I have to work to pick up aikido moves!)

    About the interview, you are very welcome, and I am so glad you liked it. I had no idea about that wonderful Takarazuka motto! I remembered that the words ‘pure and proper’ made a great impression on me in the beginning of Maria-sama ga miteru, so I checked and they are the same words, kiyoku tadashiku. Which I am sure has not been lost on you!

    And thank you so much for giving me a better word for ‘obsess’. Dream-interior! I am all for not pathologising this sort of thing (after all, thinking a lot about virtue is good!) but it is so ingrained in the culture we often forget we are doing it. I recently caught myself referring to the positive attitude I was trying to cultivate as ‘an obnoxiously positive attitude’. Obnoxiously positive! No wonder I had not been making much progress…

  • #236190
    Profile photo of Sushuri
    Sushuri
    Moderator

    Obnoxiously positive. West Telluri really are strange beings aren’t they? They seem to have a rule that everything positive must be tainted with some negativity. Every silver cloud must have a black lining. Why? Who knows? They are aliens.

    What a contrast with these words we keep encountering in one context after another ‐ kiyoku, tadashiku, utsukushiku, yasashiku ‐ purity, correctness, beauty, gentleness. This people may be aliens too, but they are Axial beings behaving like Axial beings.

    Well, I suppose West Telluri are behaving like Axial beings too, for one of the properties of Axial beings is that, unlike animals, they can turn to evil and even become quasi‐demonic.

    Not, of course that the continual verbal dallying with darkness is evil per se, but it is a continual mild exercising of the negative function of Axiality. Coarseness and bad language is another (and even more psychically damaging) one. Language is not neutral and it does have effects. All Spiel (speech) is also spell (magic) even when it is casual and unthought‐out, which is why the Scriptures tell us “Speak not evil in idleness”.

    The Japanese words are also spells, working in the opposite direction.

    Fortunately for West Tellurians (and everyone else) they, unlike the Japanese, do not have a sacred language to play with. They would be doing even more harm if they had that power to paint blackness with. But of course, it is no accident that they don’t.

  • #236342
    Profile photo of Maxie Hikari
    Hikari Maxie
    Participant

    Oh my goodness. All <i>Spiel</i> is also spell. Yes! And I think self-talk, inner talk is too (yikes, no wonder my mind is full of Bad Enders!)

    I like the idea that it is no accident that West Tellurian culture has a less sacred language and thus can do less damage. Of course, a less sacred culture creates a less sacred language. I do think the dark side is awfully prone to shooting itself in the foot!

  • #236494
    Profile photo of Yuriko Rill
    Yuriko Rill
    Participant

    It is hard to control one’s self talk and one’s thoughts, and I admit that there are many times I fail at it.

    Still, it is important to keep working on it.  Each and every one of us has a False Self, which is allied with the FoD’s, but I think it is important to remember that this Self IS False.  It is not who we are.  I think that this is one of the big difficulties with the “psychological” model.  It treats the negative thoughts and feelings as if they were the “real” ones, and the positive ones as if they were the “false” ones, which is the opposite of the truth.

    It is interesting, because there are many, many, many times in Precure when someone is encouraged to express her 本当の気持ち, hontou no kimochi, “true feelings.”  In almost every case, the true feelings are ones of love and kindness.  I find that so interesting, because it is the exact opposite of what West Tellurians tend to expect, I think.

  • #236796
    Profile photo of Rose
    Rose
    Participant

    I have noticed that about the Precure series as well, Rill-san!

    The psychological model of West Telluria assumes that the “kind, gentle” exterior conceals dark, forbidden underlying motives that cannot be outwardly expressed due to societal graces and constraints. It is an entirely negative view of the human soul, one that sees it as inherently bad. I think it goes back to the idea that we are mere animals and would act out on animalistic passions of rage, lust, etc. if it were not for “artificial” cultural standards.

    I wonder where they presume these so called “artificial” cultural standards arose in the first place? Some ideas of moral conduct are universal to all civilized societies. How can civilization proceed from a mere beast, if that is all we are?

  • #236851
    Profile photo of Sushuri
    Sushuri
    Moderator

    Honored Miss Rose, you ask precisely the right question if I may say so.

    Isn’t it one of the (many) absurd holes in the whole progress/evolution mythos that while it is assumed that Telluri are animals, it is also assumed that their true animal nature is suppressed by “society”. Why? If they are animals why do they have this universal non‐animal thame (law)? Why is the animal nature in social terms coming to the fore now more than ever? Isn’t this the reverse of what progress‐evolutionism would expect?

    On the linguistic front, why is English, the language/culture par excellence of technics, “historical realism” and the modern point of view (from their point of view the most “evolved” language/culture), so much closer to the mere animal level than traditional language/cultures like Japanese.

    Which brings us to honored Hikari‐chei’s point about one’s inner monologue. One of the things we are trying to do is to turn that into Japanese. It is a long job and an interesting one. As usual we don’t know for sure where we are going but it seems to be the way we are led. One thing for sure is that it creates an area of purity and positivity in our interior life that is very difficult (if even possible) to attain in English with its centuries of materialistic accretions and decades of inverted, essentially demonic, accretions.

  • #236883
    Profile photo of Maxie Hikari
    Hikari Maxie
    Participant

    This conversation is fascinating! I have three things to say:

    First, about hontou no kimochi being positive and loving, I think that is a very important point, Rill-san. And I think there is a silly phenomenon that takes hold sometimes when one mistakes the dark stuff for hontou no kimochi. Instead of trying to uncover the good feelings, one tries to cover the bad ones, resulting in a nasty oozing black treacle sandwich of badness with a layer of fake smiles on the top. I feel the need to illustrate this:

    Top layer:
    Fake smile emoji
    Middle layer:
    Demon emoji
    Bottom layer:
    Emoji with hearts for eyes

    Voila – the West Tellurian Emotional Grime Sandwich!

    Secondly, I think the West Tellurian view of humans as ‘animals’ in the sense of ‘brutish beasts’ not only underestimates humans, but also underestimates animals. Animals may not be Axial Beings, but I see their state as one of primal innocence, not primal brutishness. For example, experiments have shown that a hungry rat will refuse to give an electric shock to a fellow rat for a food reward, while deracinated humans will shock each other (in more ways than one!) for no reward. Even a snake is capable of love, gentleness, and self-restraint – just look at Aochan snuggling with Gohan(!!!) the hamster:

    There seems to be no evolutionary advantage to what this snake is doing. She has chosen Amity over food. Perhaps because she is a Japanese snake! (I am being silly, but I do think the ki of their environment has a profound effect on animals.) I suppose what I am trying to say is that we are not animals, but not even animals are animals in the West Tellurian sense. It is a completely made-up concept.

    As for turning your interior monologue into Japanese, what a splendid quest! I am sure it will help a lot. I have found myself thinking in Japanese a little bit already, if only because I accidentally think something half in Japanese like, ‘Bread wa where desu?’ and then get so appalled at myself that I have to go back and think it again properly!

  • #236937
    Profile photo of Maxie Hikari
    Hikari Maxie
    Participant

    Just to help you all with visualising Kanata-sama as the Brunette Princess that she clearly is.

    It may take you a moment to notice that anything is different.

     Kanata-sama in a nice skirt

  • #236965
    Profile photo of Sushuri
    Sushuri
    Moderator

    It is interesting, I think, how the scieperstitious notion of humans as “animals” and the Christian notion of humans as fundamentally depraved (and especially the Protestant doctrine of Total Depravity, which interestingly comes to the fore at the opening of the Modern period in West Telluria) play into one another and then are catalyzed by the Eclipse to give the current super‐nasty view of the human psyche.

    I would absolutely agree that an “animal” in the current West Telluri sense is an invention. Animals are not machines designed (without being designed) for survival. What they are is complex but it is certainly not that. They do, of course survive, but that is by no means what they are. We might call that notion the functionalist error.

    Giraffes, for example, have rounded horns with which they fight each other. They also have sharp hoofs with which they can kill a lion (if they are lucky). They never use these hoofs on other giraffes, however fiercely they fight. They do not need a police force to prevent them from using lethal force on their own kind. They are horizontal beings and follow their thame naturally.

    Humans do require external force to stop them breaking their thame. We do not kill our own kind, and do not require police for many of the purposes humans do. Nevertheless we are capable of breaking our thame (very rarely in the deadly force direction) and are largely “policed” by social solidarity.

    All axial (vertical) beings can rise higher and fall lower than animals.

    You are absolutely right about animals being influenced by the ki of the axial being. This is part of the axial‐animal relationship. I have heard that it is through contact with axials that animals can rise to higher states in future births.

    Hee: “bread wa where desu”. I really would not worry about this. I think it is a good start. Of course if you can use the real Japanese (doko) that is better, but I think a kind of internal pidgin is a useful step at an early stage.

     

  • #236993
    Profile photo of Sushuri
    Sushuri
    Moderator

    She really is a brunett princess isn’t she?

    Link is a brunette too.

  • #237437
    Profile photo of Rose
    Rose
    Participant

    That is a very interesting observation about the link between the Christianity’s ideas of humanity as being fundamentally depraved and modern scienticism’s congruent viewpoint. I had never correlated the two but the modern cynical view of human nature apparently did arise from Christian doctrine. The main difference is that in the modern version, there is no saving grace of a higher power.

    I suppose that it may be said that West Telluria’s ideas of animals is in itself a modern fallacy. It portrays the condition of being an animal as being far below what it actually is. As I have heard some people say “To say that people are acting like animals is to insult animals.” I also believe, as Hikari-chei says, that animals, at least for the most part, have primal innocence.

    However, I will say that during my time in working with farm animals, I have witnessed some rather bizarre behaviours that would be considered taboo in axial humans. For example, there have been times when we have had to take a calf away from its mother and bottle-feed it because for some reason she would not allow it to suckle and kept trying to trample it.

    There are also instances in the wild, for example the highly vikhelic nature of ants who attack other colonies in displays of mass warfare. Would this be acting within their thame?

    It could be a ki problem, or it could simply be a schizomorph problem, since the majority of animals that inhabit this planet could be classified as schizomorphs (if we don’t count microscopic animacules as animals!). I wouldn’t imagine this being observed in intermorphic animals.

    That leads to my question of whether animals always follow their thame and are always horizontal beings or not. I think that most animals do, but I have seen examples of animals who at least seem to fall below their thame or rise above it. Sorry if I am blathering, but I do hope my question makes sense!

    I think the story of Ao-chan and Gohan-chan (Interesting that Gohan-chan was originally going to be Ao-chan’s dinner, and doesn’t ご飯 mean “meal” in Japanese?) is a wonderful example of friendships between animals that would ordinarily be teamed against one another as predator and prey. Here is another of a little deer grooming a bobcat:

    Here are some wonderful stories about amity and unlikely cross-species animal friendships!

    http://www.mnn.com/earth-matters/animals/photos/16-unlikely-animal-friendships/opposites-attract

  • #237491
    Profile photo of Myriam Hildotter
    Myriam Hildotter
    Participant

    Yes, Honored Miss Rose, animals can rise above or fall below their thamë, but as you say, it is rare.  An example we have been given is that a dog can save the life of her Mistress, or she can go rogue and attack her Mistress.  Most of the time, though, a dog is just going to be a dog.

    I also think that for animals, it is not an every day choice between Light and Dark like it is for Axial Beings.  Most of the time when animals rise above or fall below their thamë, it is due to extraordinary circumstances, usually (but not always) within or because of their relationship with Axial Beings.  Axial Beings make choices day by day, moment by moment that keep us within the Light or that bring us closer to the Dark…what and how we eat, what we wear, what we put into our minds, et cetera.  Animals really do not make these day to day choices, but follow their thamë.

    Also, being Axial does not make us the highest beings or the most intelligent beings; we are merely the beings with the power of choice.  Angels and Fairies are non-Axial as well.

    Free Will and the power to choose fall under the Vikhelic principle.  The Raihiran Estate, with the Warrior and the Princess Archetype, also fall under the Vikhelic principle.  In the Tellurian Solar System, Sai Vikhë’s planet, Mars, is the only personal planet that can move freely within its orbit.  The Inner Planets move with the Sun, and are never further than a set distance from the Sun in their orbits, and the planets past Vikhë/Mars are not really personal planets, but represent larger principles.

  • #237493
    Profile photo of Sushuri
    Sushuri
    Moderator

    Really I have often thought (and so have others) that we need to study many things (everthing really) from a metaphysical point of view. One of the troubles with seeking knowledge in Telluria is that, other than some traditional data, it all stands on false foundations, whether they are talking about ants, stars, cactus or empires.

    Unfortunately we have not the time or personnel for a complete re‐write of Encyclopaedia Telluriana Moderna ‐ the whole “wisdom” of modern Telluria ‐ and it probably isn’t what we are here for anyway. But is is interesting to take at least a few areas and try to reconstruct the deconstructed. Not that I am qualified for that. I just pick and muse.

    Side note: While “deconstruction” is a post‐modernist term and the Rajasic (modernist, c.1650‐1960) era was more constructive in spirit, it was still razing the foundations of traditional science in order to construct (and sometimes just for the heck of it).

    Do individual animals act out of thame? Yes, occasionally. It is generally said that this is usually influenced by axial beings, I don’t think it always is though. Some things can disrupt thame in an individual, and I am prone to believe that there is a universal goodness that sometimes transcends thame even in animals. Some people would say that such animals would become axial at their next birth. So maybe there is a “shadow of axiality” at the upper fringe of the animal realm. Properly this should be assisted by the Axial being. Not necessarily by direct contact. Miss Rose’s example a while back of someone who helped people get better in a hospital simply by meditating without even seeing them is a very good example of one area of the Axial function, and is why traditional societies have axials who are fully dedicated to spiritual life (the virtual absence of these ‐ with even many of the few remaining being of a “social concern” rather than contemplative nature ‐ is one of the problems of West Telluria).

    Are ants in their mass violence acting within their thame. I suppose they must be. The point about schizomorphic animals is probably important here. It may be that Telluri are acting in their thame when they kill each other en masse. They have certainly done it throughout their history even in traditional societies. The Baghavad Gita (a book I greatly respect in many ways, and which is clearly a holy one) is partly about explaining to a prince why he should wage war and not worry about the destruction.

    Whether schizomorphity is natural or a very ancient aberration (as some suggest) is hard to know, but a schizomorphic, hyper‐vikhelic thame seems common in Telluria. While some animals (a majority, I think) do not kill their own kind, others also do, quite regularly. This could certainly have been influenced by a choice made by the Axial long ago. But I guess we don’t know.

    On the other hand, murder (non‐organized lethal violence) is athame in all Telluri cultures and they break that regularly in a way that we do not. But that may because it is closer to their thame even though outside it.

    It is very hard to diagnose an alien people!

    On angels and fairies I would just like to say: angels (janyati and some janyati‐stream beings) are certainly super‐axial a “fallen janya” is not possible. Fairies we are often taught are non‐axial but I think a problem here lies with modern English. “Fairy” is a huge, ill‐defined term. Nature‐spirits are mostly non‐axial I believe, so are many other kinds of “fairy”. Some others are I suspect axial. “Fairy” seems to cover anything that is not human, animal, ghost or demon.

    Just think, we would probably be classed as “fairies” before the more modern concept of “alien” came about. Which of the two is more accurate? Here is where we get into the huge problem of classification which is much too big for this post. But a lot of what the Tellurian Rajasic did was to categorize almost everything in ways that enforce a certain ideological viewpoint (the common statement that “a whale is not a fish” is an example of this. Re‐classifying beings according to certain purely biological determinants rather than their archetypal symbolism).

    The term “alien” rests on a particular way of conceptualizing physical space (not necessarily “wrong” but limited). We can tend to use it because it makes sense in modern English and also harmonizes with our own term “outlander” (the noun alien being ambiguous in Engish with two common meanings).

    Phew. Sorry for all this rambling!

  • #237521
    Profile photo of Sushuri
    Sushuri
    Moderator

    PS ‐ 飯 han (note the han sound sister plus the regular sign for “eat” 食) means cooked rice (as opposed to 米 kome, rice grain). Go is the regular o/go honorific. Gohan literallly means cooked rice but is regularly used to mean “meal”. Bangohan is “evening rice” = “evening meal” = “dinner” for example.

  • #237892
    Profile photo of Petite Sorcière
    Petite Sorcière
    Participant

    So am I right in thinking that the Japanese name for dinner is literally “Honored evening rice”?

  • #243801
    Profile photo of Sushuri
    Sushuri
    Moderator

    Honored Hikari‐chei mentioned a while ago the sparsity of brunettes in magical girl anime, with often one “token” brunette whose main characteristic is being a brunette.

    Well with this week’s epi, it rather looks as if Go! Princess Precure will have a threesome of two brunettes and one blonde. Omoshiroi ne.

    the paper sistersROD (Read or Die) the TV has a family of three paper‐magical superheroines consisting of two brunettes and one blonde.

    They also move in as bodyguards with a very brunette authoress, Sumiregawa Nenene, making a households of four brunettes and one blonde.

    Is that a record, I wonder.

    But also, isn’t it amazing how certain Japanese media get blondes and brunettes pretty much right?

    I wonder why that is.

     

  • #243976
    Profile photo of Yuriko Rill
    Yuriko Rill
    Participant

    Oh my, 4 brunettes to one blonde.  That sounds like a rather lively household.

    It is interesting that we are starting with two brunettes in Go! Princess Precure.  Heee….Cure Twinkle is quite the brunette isn’t she?  If I had any doubts at all, her using the “fixing things”, big truck vehicle (that I can not even think of the name for…a forklift, maybe) to fight before she even transformed clinched it.  Having a heavy brunette presence would be useful to realize dreams, I would imagine.

    It is interesting, because it does seem like anime does indeed get blondes and brunettes “right.”  No matter the reason, it is quite useful for us, isn’t it?

    It has been especially useful for me lately.  It is has been really interesting comparing the brunette Cure Mermaid with the blonde Cure Beauty.  Both are Blue Precures, very responsible ojousama, and officers of the Student Council.  It is hard to explain exactly why, but I could not imagine Cure Mermaid in front of the class trying to speak with everyone talking over her, nor can I imagine Cure Mermaid quietly watering the flowers before class.

    I think in some ways they are more useful models than the more obviously examples, such as the brunette Cure Sunny and the blonde Cure Peace.  The differences between Cure Mermaid and Cure Beauty are more subtle, but still quite clear, I think.

    I was just talking with my spouse about this, actually, and she was mentioning that there was a different quality to blondes and brunettes, which was not just about competence or lack of competence.  We then started comparing the pink blonde Cure Heart in DokiDoki Precure with the pink brunette Cure Melody in Suite Precure.  Cure Heart is by far more competent, but one would not mistake Cure Heart for a brunette, nor would one mistake Cure Melody for a blonde.

  • #245007
    Profile photo of Maxie Hikari
    Hikari Maxie
    Participant

    This thread is very interesting to me (omoshiroi ne!) I looked up ROD the TV and my goodness, they even have a shy, introverted brunette! How incredibly rare.

    Honored Rill-san, we may need brunettes to realise dreams, but we need blondes to inspire them and keep them alive (the dreams, not the brunettes, although sometimes that too!) I think it is significant that while the show may be brunette-heavy, the heroine is a blonde.

    As you know, I am finding this whole ‘competence is not the same as brunetteliness’ conversation useful for opposite reasons to your lovely self! I am having trouble finding the words here, but I think that while no amount of incompetence can make a brunette a blonde, brunettes are called to strive for competence in a special way. Of course, everyone should ganbaru, and blonde ganbari is possibly the most inspiring thing in the world. But there is a reason why you can explain blondes perfectly well without talking about brunettes, but you really can’t explain brunettes without talking about blondes. We are really the supporting sex. Blondes can climb closer to heaven with somebody to hold the ladder for them. Blonde ki uplifts you and brunette ki grounds you, and living as we do between earth and heaven, we all need both.

    Some brunettes fulfil this grounding function in ways that have nothing to do with competence. Cure Sunny uses humour. Laughter is tremendously grounding – laughing in the face of your problems cuts them right down to size. But in order to be the very best brunette I can be, I do want to become as competent as I can be. It is much easier for a blonde to do her best when she knows that she has backup, that if she falls it will be all right because she has a brunette there to make it all right.

    For this reason I really want to get better at doing what I say I will do, when I say I will do it, to give my beloved blonde oneechan a sense of stability and security behind her as she battles her demons. I am finding it a big challenge at the moment, but zettai ni akiramenai!

    I would like to quote a passage from a lovely racinated website that i shall pretend is called ‘The Art of Brunetteliness.’ Slightly edited, of course, and it does focus rather on married pettes but I think it is just as applicable to all bonds of Mayamity.

    Oh dear, I had not realised quite how long it is. If anyone feels moved to read all the way to the end, I would love to know your own ideas and whether you think I am on the right track here!

    *** Quote begins here ***

    While much in the way of traditional gender roles has shifted in modern times, most blondes I know still want a brunette who can be the rock in the relationship. But just what does being the rock entail? I asked this question in the Community, and this is what a few of the brunettes had to say:

    Jemima said: “To me, that means being mature, guided by reason and my family’s best interest, rather than being given to emotional upsets. My blonde wants to know that if she gives me her cares and concerns, she can rest assured that I’ll take care of them responsibly.”

    Jessie said: “To me, being the rock means I need to be the calm when life starts getting stormy. Not that I can control the events that happen in life, but I can control how our family responds to the events. . . Does it mean I’m always “the rock?” No, there are times when I have had to lean on my blonde for support, but as a general rule my job is to be there for her and the kids. If there is a crisis and I’m not doing well, I have to put aside my fear and anxieties to step up for them. You feel like you want to crawl into a hole and disappear, but you can’t because others depend on you. Those are the times of real testing. When those times arrive I think of a quote I read somewhere (I don’t know who originally said it) but here it is: “Ask not for a lighter burden, but ask for broader shoulders.”

    Rebecca said: “My brunette mother was always the “rock” in the family. She’s the go to maid. The person you can always rely on. The person that you know will be strong when everyone else isn’t…Being the “rock” means always doing what you say you will do. Being calm when the situation seems to be chaotic and panic the order of the day. My Mimi is the rock because she is reason when emotion prevails, compassion when hearts are hardened, and humorous when you least expect it.”

    What else does it mean to be the rock? Let’s take a look.

    Be a haven of safety. Sometimes a blonde wants to cry on your shoulder. When she does, you don’t look at her strangely and say, “Good heavens, what’s the matter with you?” You don’t tell her you’ll cuddle after you’re done with that level on the lightgame. You’re immediately available to hold her and comfort her. You should be a bastion of calmness, strength, and understanding. When she’s in your arms, she should feel totally safe, like nothing in the world can harm or hurt her. Let your blonde know that letting out her feelings is okay and give her your undivided attention. The same goes for your kids; when they’re hurt and they need you, you’re immediately available.

    Unravel the problem. Oftentimes a blonde feels overwhelmed because of a problem she’s having. Her feelings are knotted up in a great ball. Your job is to slowly take the problem apart. Don’t give an off the cuff solution at first. Instead, ask her questions about exactly why she’s feeling down or overwhelmed. Be interested and attentive to what she has to say. She really wants someone to talk through the problem with and vent to. Ask follow-up questions and have her explain her concerns.

    Formulate a plan….or not.It’s become a popular cliché to say that when a blonde vents her problems to you, you shouldn’t offer a solution. And sometimes that assumption is correct, but certainly not always.

    It’s true that you shouldn’t offer a solution right off the bat; as I mentioned, you want to unravel the problem first and allow your blonde to talk through everything that is bothering her. At that point you should ask her directly, “Is this is a problem that you want help solving? Or do you just want to vent?”

    If it’s the former, then here is where you as a brunette can really shine. Come up with a specific action plan to help your blonde tackle the problem. When appropriate, put her mind at ease and take on some of the responsibility for making things right. For example, let’s say your blonde comes to you in tears because she has a big research paper due but a hundred other things she needs to take care of as well. You would say, “Okay, here’s what we’ll do. I’ll take your dog to the vet, take those packages to the post office, and change your oil. All you need to worry about it working on that paper. You focus on that; I’ll take care of the rest.”

    When your blonde is suffering some kind of ailment, research all about it in Elektraspace and come up with some remedies she can try. If she’s having trouble making a decision, sit with her and come up with a pro and con chart.

    Never say: “Don’t worry about it.” She’s already worried about it, and so to her it is something worth worrying about. Telling her not to worry only dismisses her feelings as invalid and thus is prone to make her angry. Instead, always say, “I’ll take care of it.”

    Delay your grief. When something tragic happens that affects your family, be a pillar of strength during the crisis. Take care of the business that needs taking care of. If your blonde doesn’t feel like getting out of bed and cooking or cleaning or talking to people and returning phone calls, you do it for her.

    Now, I know that some are going to say that keeping your feelings in is unhealthy. But the idea is not to suppress them indefinitely. Instead, you follow the ancient code of brunettehood: blondes and children first. You let them do their grieving during the initial shock of things. Then, when they’re feeling better, it is your turn to grieve.

    This doesn’t mean that you can’t grieve initially too. You should take time to be by yourself and vent to other family members and friends. And it’s good to grieve and cry with your blonde sometimes as well. She wants to know that the loss has affected you too. But in situations where she needs you to be strong, then you buck up and face the world while she heals.

    Express your emotions in a mature and healthy way. Being the rock doesn’t mean being stoic and suppressing your emotions. Keeping your feelings bottled up might seem to make you more of “the rock,” but instead of adding stability to a relationship, it will create subtle cracks that will eventually open into real rifts.

    A blonde has many fears about having a relationship with a brunette. Will she be abusive? Will she be faithful? Will she provide for the family? Will she regress into a child-brunette who spurns responsibility? Instead of placating these fears, keeping your feelings from your blonde will only exacerbate them. So being the rock really means expressing your emotions and concerns in a healthy and mature way. Doing so will actually solidify and strengthen your relationship.

    This is especially important to remember when you and your blonde are dealing with problems in the relationship. At such times it’s tempting to shut down and engage in stonewalling (not the right kind of rock to be). But an argument is the most vulnerable time in a relationship, and therefore it’s the best time to show her that she has nothing to fear from you. You can take whatever she throws at you without losing control or threatening to leave her. You can let her know your feelings like a brunette, not a child.

    Take care of business. Being the rock is not just something we should do when a blonde is venting to us; you should be working to solidify your blonde’s confidence in you each and every day. I often find it much easier to rise to the occasion when a big crisis hits than when following through on the mundane, everyday tasks that my blonde expects of me. But a blonde wants to know she can count on you in the big things and the small things. It’s by doing the small things that she knows she can trust you when the big things come around.

    Taking care of business means doing all the things that help inspire confidence in your blonde. Being ambitious at work, keeping a budget, staying on top of appointments and “honey-do’s,” staying physically healthy, and so on. It means being absolutely reliable; if you say you will do it, you do it. You can always be counted on to follow-through.

    I’d like to end with another comment from Rebecca, who summed things up perfectly:

    “In ancient societies brunettes were the watchmaids to protect their families from being eaten, taken by demons, and other dangers. They provided a realm of safety where their family could let down their guard knowing that the brunette would not let hers down and they would be safe. Being the rock means being the protector, the watchmaid, the provider. Today our loved ones rely on us to provide a safe realm where they can allow themselves to let their guard down emotionally and physically. They know they can break down emotionally and we’ll still be there standing strong. They know we will get up in the middle of the night with a baseball bat and check that noise they heard downstairs. They know that you will not belittle them like their peers at school, work, temple, etc. Being the rock means providing a place where they can find love, understanding, emotional safety, physical safety, and acceptance. Be the brunette. Be the rock.”

     

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