Kyoto-blogging: cultural chasms

I've often argued the point that the term "The West" encompasses all of civilization from all the Abrahamic faiths. Following the development of science from the Greeks to the Arabs to the Subcontinent to Europe, there's a clearly linear path. The true Other has always been China and the civilizational derivatives of Japan, Korea, etc. which based on the phenotype variation alone amongst the population, is truly a further-removed cousin. Still, I never really grasped the enormity of the cultural differences under the shared globalism veneer, until I read this story about the attitudes of the Japanese people to their returning freed hostages from Iraq.

My mind simply boggles. I can't understand it. I hesitate at leaping to moral conclusions about Japanese society, but clearly there is a fundamental difference in worldview operating here.

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