Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Buddhism & Suffering

The two Buddhist concepts which infuence the mono no aware sensibility in Japanese drama, poetry & literature are the Four Noble Truths and the Eightfold Path (the latter elaborates the fourth of the former.)
You will see that mono no aware is a very real & powerful mood in Yukio Mishima's play Madame de Sade.
This is not, I should clarify, not to say that these Buddhist doctrines influenced Mishima. The contrary, in fact, since hedonism violates the fourth noble truth. Rather, the doctrines are the historical background to mono no aware -- a mood which Mishima does deliberately invoke in his drama.

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