But before we even get as far as discussing the oneness of individuals, is the world itself really such a smooth and harmonious whole to begin with? Would such a world even be desirable? Let us assume that such a world would indeed be a good place to live. The following, at least, is then clear: we can say that originally the world was harmonious, and the problem is that this is not the case now, but if the current world in which we are forced to surround ourselves with foreign objects is something to be destroyed, then the pain we receive from this world, and with it the joy we receive at the same time, must also cease to exist. This is sometimes expressed as a contrast between dualism and monism. There is the idea that distinctions like "subject" and "object," distinctions of any kind, in fact, are false, and all things are actually the same. But our world does not appear this way, and even if it is possible to arrive at a monist view by following a fixed process of logical reduction or "training," why is it necessary to claim that the origins or essence of things can only be found once such a reduced position is arrived at? There is no reason that this should be the case. The fact that such reductions are possible, and that reaching or conceiving of such a position of total reduction is possible, does not in itself mean that such a position is more essential or desirable than any other. The experience of the other is not of something right here in front of us, but of something that exists over there, on the surface, in reality◆1.
chap. 4 note 1
I stated something similar in a discussion (Morioka et al. ) of "Taisho vitalism." I do not think that, at least when it comes to thinking about our own lives, "machine versus organic body" or "subject-object dualism versus monism" are in any way fundamental distinctions.
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