Monday, February 6, 2017


Aimai means ‘ambiguity,’ which is defined as a state in which there is more than one intended meaning resulting in obscurity, indistinctness, and uncertainty. To be ambiguous in Japanese is generally translated as aimaina, but people use this term with a wide range of meanings including ‘vague, obscure, equivocal, dubious, doubtful, questionable, shady, noncommittal, indefinite, hazy, double, two-edged,’ and so on (Roger J. Davies & Osamu Ikedo, 2002). In short, Aimai is an ancient method of communication for Japanese people which has its roots in the need for harmony. As I mentioned earlier, during the Tokugawa Period, Japan was cut off from the outside world. As a result, communities depended on each other to produce food. Collectively, they had to work and cooperate together in harmony in order to produce more. In order to do so they practiced Aimai.

“Natural communication often occurred without spoken words, and people followed their elders because they had more experience, wisdom, and power. In order to live without creating any serious problems for the group's harmony, people avoided expressing their ideas clearly, even to the point of avoiding giving a simple yes or no answer. If a person really wanted to say no he or she said nothing at first and then used vague expressions that conveyed the nuance of disagreement.”

Another reason for ambiguity is the feeling that to speak directly is to assume superiority over the person you are conversing with. The Japanese think it is impolite to speak openly on the assumption that their partner knows nothing. The Japanese value Aimai because they think that it is unnecessary to speak clearly as long as their partner is knowledgeable. To express one’s self distinctly carries the assumption that one's partner knows nothing, so clear expression can be considered impolite. Silence can also be considered a form of ambiguity. For the Japanese, silence indicates deep thinking or consideration, but too much silence often makes non-Japanese uncomfortable.

Once again we can see that being direct and not sharing the real heart but following the interests of the group plays an important role. In the case of Aimai, it also goes deeper assuming that the other person already knows what you want to say even if he or she does not know what you are talking about. This act makes the other part coequal to the speaker, or else it may look very superior and proud if someone explains everything in detail. Of course, this makes evangelism a very hard work, like assuming that they also know Christ and the good news of the gospel.

Some evangelists, especially from Northern America or Europe, go to Japan or even another country in the world with the attitude that ‘we’ are coming to teach something, and ‘we’ know it better and ‘we’ have it all, and ‘we’ come to bring ‘our’ style of worship and serve God. This attitude makes the evangelists or missionaries look like Wagamama—childish and selfish.

However, I still consider Aimai as a stronghold because the Christian message is a direct message and cultural values such as this block the directness of the gospel of Christ to the audience. For this reason, the outsiders going to Japan for evangelism work, or even Japanese Christians, should practice directness in their message and lifestyle. The Christian leaders and pastors and those in authority have to teach the Japanese Christians the basic principles of why it is important to be direct and what directness can do when they witness to an unbeliever.
from Project Japan


Gert said...

The gift that keeps on giving.

(and I thought Obomba's press people were funny with their Ingsoc babble....)

-FJ said...

Unfortunately, pc-speak is the only language that the media pretend to understand...

FreeThinke said...


Permitting the Rule of Law to be supplanted by the Rule of Judges and the Lawyers who bring POLITICALLY-MOTIVATED SUITS before them –– SUITS that for the most part should be DISMISSED is the Bitter Ass End of American Politics today.

This phenomenon –– brought to us courtesy of the belligerence and colossal effrontery of Progressive-Marxian-Statists and Communist Revolutionaries –– is possibly the worst development in modern times.

It effectively subverts, and obviates the Will of the People by undermining and dismissing the decisions made by their duly-elected representatives, thus creating a JUDICIAL OLIGARCHY informed and motivated primarily by MALCONTENTS, MORONS, SEDITIONISTS and CAREER TROUBLEMAKERS.

If this is in fact "constitutional," it reveals a serious FLAW in the thinking of our Founding Fathers. We should excuse them, however, for its doubtful they could have foreseen the emergence of Marxist-Anarchist-Progressive-Statists in a society founded by English-speaking white men on the principles of English Common Law, which was certainly informed by CHRISTIAN principles and precepts.

Misuse and abuse of the judicial process by craftily manipulating the system to install a preponderance of LEFTIST JUDGES is the way COMMUNIST-INTERNATIONALISTS have managed to TAKE OVER our once-free society.

Thersites said...

Trumps 'authority' for his immigration policy comes from his "War Powers". He can over-ride the judicial branch at any time, provided he can count on his party to keep the "impeachment" demons at bay.

That he doesn't invoke his war powers argues to the actual "need" for the policy.

Thersites said...

(barring any imminent expansion of our WoT commitments, which I doubt are forthcoming).

FreeThinke said...

By the way the good Bishop Barron makes an excellent case, however unintentionally, for the belief many private Christians like myself hold that the traditional role of PRIESTS and other forms of clergy is unnecessary to the continuance and propagation of Christian faith.

I was raised a Protestant with parents and grandparents who were outspoken anti-Catholics. Having met and known any number of Roman Catholics who are wonderful people I can't say that I could denounce Roman Catholicism categorically, BUT much of the Roman Church's propaganda seems to want always to glorify PAIN, SUFFERING, SELF-ABNEGATION, PERSECUTION, and MARTYRDOM as opposed to living a wholesome, productive, prosperous, happy life dominated by affection, kind-heartedness, and a healthy reverence for Beauty, Creativity, Ingenuity and Generosity.

-FJ said...

Christianity was always a non-hierarchical religion... the Catholic Church represents its' corruption. It was like a seed cast into the wind which roots in the wildernesses and forms a "community organizing principle" that "everyone" can abide by (a rhizome) in the "absence" of greater "arboreal" structures (D&G, 1k Plateaus)