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Old 2012-08-21, 22:02   Link #1481
Obelisk ze Tormentor
Black Steel Knight
 
 
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Originally Posted by Guardian Enzo View Post
The fact that he's male?
I don’t know about you, but I have male friends that have desire to help others. That was considered normal (noble even). Or, are you saying that, in Japan (or anime set-in-Japan), boys having desire to help others is suspicious and always has ulterior motives?
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Old 2012-08-21, 22:07   Link #1482
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Originally Posted by Obelisk ze Tormentor View Post
Or, are you saying that, in Japan (or anime set-in-Japan), boys having desire to help others is suspicious and always has ulterior motives?
In short, yes. Unfortunately society is adamant on viewing it this way. Not just in Japan either.
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Old 2012-08-21, 22:15   Link #1483
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Originally Posted by Snuffle View Post
In short, yes. Unfortunately society is adamant on viewing it this way. Not just in Japan either.
Such a sad world we live in .

Then again, there's always those criminals who pretend to be nice (like conmen, pickpocket groups, and rapists) but then take your precious things. So yeah, I think being careful is in order .
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Old 2012-08-21, 22:28   Link #1484
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Originally Posted by Midonin View Post
Shouldn't altruism be a universal trait of humans that's worth looking up to in anybody, regardless of gender?
That's a matter for debate, I believe.

Altruism, just like egoism, can be quite undesirable when in excess. For that matter, I'm well-convinced that Taichi lies squarely on the excessive side.
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Old 2012-08-21, 22:42   Link #1485
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Originally Posted by Obelisk ze Tormentor View Post
I don’t know about you, but I have male friends that have desire to help others. That was considered normal (noble even). Or, are you saying that, in Japan (or anime set-in-Japan), boys having desire to help others is suspicious and always has ulterior motives?
I'm saying that anime fans as a rule hold male characters to a much tougher standard of behavior than females, especially as regards the consideration they show their opposite gender.
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Old 2012-08-21, 22:45   Link #1486
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Guardian Enzo View Post
I'm saying that anime fans as a rule hold male characters to a much tougher standard of behavior than females, especially as regards the consideration they show their opposite gender.
I respect that this topic is important to you, but I think this has already been discussed in this thread before, and I think threatens to bring this thread off-topic, since it's really more about what you perceive as a wider problem (and not really about this show in particular). If you would like to have a new discussion about this issue, please feel free to create a thread in the General Anime section where you outline the broader argument you wish to make.
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Old 2012-08-21, 22:49   Link #1487
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Originally Posted by relentlessflame View Post
I respect that this topic is important to you, but I think this has already been discussed in this thread before, and I think threatens to bring this thread off-topic, since it's really more about what you perceive as a wider problem (and not really about this show in particular). If you would like to have a new discussion about this issue, please feel free to create a thread in the General Anime section where you outline the broader argument you wish to make.
Actually, my comment was a direct follow-up to this exchange:

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Originally Posted by Shimapan View Post
[*]Taichi shouting at Inaban. This was totally uncalled for and by far the most hurtful of all of them. Yet still, even as he realised what he had done, he was being an asshole and didn't even apologize or anything, but simply let her go. I really felt like kicking him for that.

I really hope this confusing and pointless stuff is cleared up in the next episode.
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Originally Posted by Snuffle View Post
That's being pretty harsh on Taichi don't you think? Inaba has done much worse especially to him. Not saying that gives him the right to talk to her like that, but Inaba does questionable things to others out of her OWN violation while Taichi was expressing feelings due to Heart Seed's control which he would normally keep to himself.

I thought this whole show was about Heart Seed teaching these kids that they need to break out of their shell and be more honest and trusting etc. That's how I see it anyway. So I don't really think all of this is pointless.
Of course you're free to make any arbitrary decision about what's relevant to a discussion about the series that you want, but this one seems like a stretch to me. A discussion comparing the behavior of two characters and the way it's interpreted is "off-topic"?
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Old 2012-08-21, 22:54   Link #1488
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Originally Posted by Guardian Enzo View Post
Of course you're free to make any arbitrary decision about what's relevant to a discussion about the series that you want, but this one seems like a stretch to me. A discussion comparing the behavior of two characters and the way it's interpreted is "off-topic"?
If it remains on-topic to this show, then it's fine. But I think that the way your point is phrased is just going to open a big broad debate again, and I think that broader debate is not best suited for this thread, but in a distinct thread that can be referenced for on-going discussion. Otherwise, I believe we will just go around in circles all over again.

As long as the conversation stays on-topic to this show, it's okay.
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Old 2012-08-22, 00:03   Link #1489
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Originally Posted by Midonin View Post
Shouldn't altruism be a universal trait of humans that's worth looking up to in anybody, regardless of gender?
I agree with you on this. I think that altruism is a much more admirable and desirable trait than egoism is.


As for Guardian Enzo's point, I agree with it, and I think it's a legitimate point that's very much on-topic for this series thread.

There's a certain abrasiveness to Inaba's interactions with Taichi that I think would get much more criticism if Inaba was male and Taichi female.

One thing I've noticed is that sometimes Inaba will ask Taichi a question, and just because he goes into a little bit of detail she starts to snap at him for not keeping it really short. Honestly, that strikes me as kind of rude, and I doubt it would be well-received by most anime fans if a guy was being like that to a cute girl. Then there's moments that are like the physical equivalent of this (such as Inaba pinching Taichi's lips and her later flicking his head in this episode).

It's nothing major - I've certainly seen much worse - But it's enough that I really do think that it's pretty one-sided to fault Taichi for anything that he said to Inaba if you're not willing to also fault her for this pattern of somewhat harsh treatment she's shown him.

But even putting aside how Inaba can be a bit rough towards Taichi, we see how she also has a tendency to play fast and loose with her female friends' secrets. She keeps disclosing their secrets and/or threatening to do so if they won't do what she wants them to. Now, I personally find this deliciously ironic - The girl with trust issues is not entirely trustworthy herself. She's not somebody I'd want to confide secrets in, that's for sure.

Just to be clear, I'm not saying this makes Inaba a bad character, or even a bad person. She definitely has her positive qualities to (she's smart, she's logical, I think she's the cast member that does the best job of seeing 'the bigger picture', in many ways she's 'the glue' that keeps this group functioning). I also think that Inaba cares a lot about her friends, but that she simply shows that in a mostly indirect way. I'd say that she's mostly a good person, but with rough edges to her.

Inaba is not presented as an over-the-top tsundere, but she has a definite edge to her that makes her stand out. It's fair to say that Inaba can play rough with people, and I'm honestly glad that we see some of that in how she approaches other female characters as well (such as her snapping off at Yui in the latest episode).

But this does mean that I have less issue with Taichi saying something a bit harsh to Inaba than I would have with Taichi saying something a bit harsh to Iori (who has been consistently nice towards Taichi).
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Old 2012-08-22, 01:19   Link #1490
Obelisk ze Tormentor
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Huh, so it’s back to “anime is being tougher on male characters than female character” issue? I thought we already discuss this in this thread some pages ago.

Note: I also don’t agree with Shimapan’s post about Taichi being "an asshole" to Inaba considering that Taichi has no self-control at the time and Inaba also done the same (or even more, one could argue) to Taichi intentionally while her self-control was still intact.
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Old 2012-08-22, 03:04   Link #1491
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Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
I think that altruism is a much more admirable and desirable trait than egoism is.
Even excessive altruism is infinitely better than excessive selfishness. I can understand that it can be annoying to insist on helping with things people don't need help with, but Taichi never did anything of the sort. If he's truly altruistic, he would put other people's feelings above his own need to help and so far he's doing a fine job at that. The only time he needed to do anything extreme, he gave up immediately when Iori said she didn't want that.

Last edited by Blonto; 2012-08-22 at 03:36.
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Old 2012-08-22, 03:37   Link #1492
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Originally Posted by Blonto View Post
Even excessive altruism is infinitely better than excessive selfishness. I can understand that it can be annoying to insist on helping with things people don't need help with, but Taichi never did anything of the sort. If he's truly altruistic, he would put other people's feelings above his own need to help and so far he's doing a fine job at that. The only time he needed to do anything extreme, he gave up immediately when Iori said she didn't want that.
When you say "better", what particular reference point are you using exactly?

The problem with claiming one side to be better than the other is that anyone can only do so with a specific reference point in mind. Likewise, changing the reference point can come up with an entirely different perspective. In my case, disregarding the self is every bit as abhorrent as disregarding others.

The way I saw it, Taichi really crossed the line once he began imposing his own to beliefs onto to Himeko in that one scene. It's all well and good if he wants to kill himself for the sake of someone else, but if he expects others to make the same sacrifices he makes, then there is something seriously wrong with him.
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Old 2012-08-22, 04:23   Link #1493
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Originally Posted by Qilin View Post
When you say "better", what particular reference point are you using exactly?

The problem with claiming one side to be better than the other is that anyone can only do so with a specific reference point in mind. Likewise, changing the reference point can come up with an entirely different perspective. In my case, disregarding the self is every bit as abhorrent as disregarding others.
I see a better option as one that helps the largest number of people. Selfishness is focused on the well-being of only one person, altruism focuses on the well-being of many. This number rises even further if the person is willing to risk their own well-being, rather than not even try out of fear for their own well-being. The only way it can be bad is if the person is truly destroying himself in the process and Taichi is nowhere near that.

Quote:
The way I saw it, Taichi really crossed the line once he began imposing his own to beliefs onto to Himeko in that one scene. It's all well and good if he wants to kill himself for the sake of someone else, but if he expects others to make the same sacrifices he makes, then there is something seriously wrong with him.
I don't remember Taichi saying anything of the sort. If he judged people for not wanting to kill themselves for others, he'd lash out at Aoki for suggesting Iori dies with her own body in episode 5. Instead he calmly accepted both Iori's wish and his friends' unwillingness to give their lives for Iori.
No, his anger was directed at Inaba's willingness to not get herself involved with a friend in need. Inaba is doing the exact same thing Yui is doing, she's avoiding normal contact out of fear that this new gimmick will make her hurt people even more.
Aside from that, are you forgetting that Taichi's desire got released in that scene? He was frustrated at Inaba's passiveness regarding a friend who's suffering. The only reason he's "imposing his beliefs" is because he's saying what he's thinking due to this new gimmick.
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Old 2012-08-22, 04:48   Link #1494
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Qilin View Post
When you say "better", what particular reference point are you using exactly?

The problem with claiming one side to be better than the other is that anyone can only do so with a specific reference point in mind. Likewise, changing the reference point can come up with an entirely different perspective. In my case, disregarding the self is every bit as abhorrent as disregarding others.

The way I saw it, Taichi really crossed the line once he began imposing his own to beliefs onto to Himeko in that one scene. It's all well and good if he wants to kill himself for the sake of someone else, but if he expects others to make the same sacrifices he makes, then there is something seriously wrong with him.
Blonto's response to this isn't exactly the same as mine would be, but I think he handled it well, so I'll leave most of it at what he said, at least for now.


But one particular point that I want to address is your claim that Taichi "crossed the line" during an "Id moment" (i.e. when he became angry with Inaba). That's the whole point of these "Id moments" - They cause you to cross certain social boundaries that normally you wouldn't.

Truth be told, most people judge other people (i.e. assess them by our own moral norms and standards) everyday. It's just that we know it's generally rude, if not inappropriate, to try to impose those judgements on others except in the most egregious of cases (i.e. "Did you just murder that person?! What are you thinking?!").

But due to these "Id moments", both Taichi and Inaba (and likely other cast members as well, over time) are being more openly judgmental towards their friends than they typically would be.


I think we need to be very careful in criticizing these characters for things they do or say during Id moments. At the very least, we shouldn't hold those "Id moments" to the same standards that we would things done or said with a character's inhibitions entirely intact.

I'm sure a lot of people do/say stupid things while drunk that they would never do/say while sober. And that's much the same situation here with these "Id moments", I think.
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Old 2012-08-22, 04:49   Link #1495
Qilin
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Let me clarify, I was not judging how Taichi acted in that single situation, but rather the undesirable aspects of his character that were exposed in the scene in question, including any hidden thoughts that he would not express otherwise.

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Originally Posted by Blonto View Post
I see a better option as one that helps the largest number of people. Selfishness is focused on the well-being of only one person, altruism focuses on the well-being of many. This number rises even further if the person is willing to risk their own well-being, rather than not even try out of fear for their own well-being. The only way it can be bad is if the person is truly destroying himself in the process and Taichi is nowhere near that.
The ethics debate is long, tedious, and ultimately futile, so I'd rather not pursue this further, but if you think that utilitarian principles are the way to go, fine (though I should add that utilitarianism suffers from several flaws of practicality).

But those principles wouldn't necessarily apply to a person who does not believe that human lives are of equal value, for example an individual who holds a predominantly egocentric view. It sounds ugly, I know, but it's interesting how perspectives can change form by simply changing a few assumptions.

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Originally Posted by Blonto View Post
I don't remember Taichi saying anything of the sort. If he judged people for not wanting to kill themselves for others, he'd lash out at Aoki for suggesting Iori dies with her own body in episode 5. Instead he calmly accepted both Iori's wish and his friends' unwillingness to give their lives for Iori.
Like you said, the regulatory mechanisms that kept his behavior in check during that incident were well intact, so any objections he might have had were not expressed.

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Originally Posted by Blonto View Post
No, his anger was directed at Inaba's willingness to not get herself involved with a friend in need. Inaba is doing the exact same thing Yui is doing, she's avoiding normal contact out of fear that this new gimmick will make her hurt people even more.
And? Was there anything unusual about her sentiments? Wasn't that the logical thing to do?

Mind you, I'm not judging Taichi's personality here, but the way he condemned Himeko for just acting the way she did was a glimpse into a darker side of his psyche. Don't get me wrong. I actually like this development since it hints at something interesting behind that white knight facade of his.

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Originally Posted by Blonto View Post
Aside from that, are you forgetting that Taichi's desire got released in that scene? He was frustrated at Inaba's passiveness regarding a friend who's suffering. The only reason he's "imposing his beliefs" is because he's saying what he's thinking due to this new gimmick.
There it is again. While, of course, we can blame the present circumstances for that incident. It is undeniable that he expressed what he truly felt at the moment, so we can't fully absolve him of responsibility for his actions. Therefore, you can't say that he wasn't himself since it was just as much a part of him as his usual personality, just that it's a part that he usually keeps hidden.
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Old 2012-08-22, 05:04   Link #1496
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Originally Posted by Qilin View Post
Let me clarify, I was not judging how Taichi acted in that single situation, but rather the undesirable aspects of his character that were exposed in the scene in question, including any hidden thoughts that he would not express otherwise.
Oh please. We all think things like Taichi thought during that scene, during one time or another. We all privately disapprove of the actions and words of others at one time or another. But like what I wrote before, we normally keep those misgivings under lid unless directly asked our opinion on something (at which point it's hardly an "imposition") or in the most egregious of circumstances.

There's no "undesirable aspect" of his character here. It's just being human.

Taichi is not without his flaws, certainly. But he's not flawed simply for thinking that Inaba didn't care enough about Yui in that scene.


Quote:
Mind you, I'm not judging Taichi's personality here, but the way he condemned Himeko for just acting the way she did was a glimpse into a darker side of his psyche. Don't get me wrong. I actually like this development since it hints at something interesting behind that white knight facade of his.
I think calling it a "facade" isn't entirely correct. I do think he sincerely wants to help others. But there's a darker side to that where he's probably too self-sacrificing for his own good. He needs more balance, in other words.
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Old 2012-08-22, 05:41   Link #1497
Qilin
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Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
Oh please. We all think things like Taichi thought during that scene, during one time or another. We all privately disapprove of the actions and words of others at one time or another. But like what I wrote before, we normally keep those misgivings under lid unless directly asked our opinion on something (at which point it's hardly an "imposition") or in the most egregious of circumstances.

There's no "undesirable aspect" of his character here. It's just being human.

Taichi is not without his flaws, certainly. But he's not flawed simply for thinking that Inaba didn't care enough about Yui in that scene.
Fine. I'll concede that point since your explanation seems good enough.

Still, I thought it was pretty clear that the very reason for Himeko's reluctance was for Yui's sake, so Taichi's reaction (or if you're a stickler for details, his impulse to react) was unwarranted. It could at least indicate some dire insensitivity on his part.

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Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
I think calling it a "facade" isn't entirely correct. I do think he sincerely wants to help others. But there's a darker side to that where he's probably too self-sacrificing for his own good. He needs more balance, in other words.
"Sincere intentions" can probably be dissected even further with a bit more effort, but let's not go there.

But I mostly agree on this point. His problem is that he values himself too little. Going along with this show's theme of exploring the "self", he is in danger of losing his ego as he sacrifices it for others, thereby, losing his concept of "self". Thankfully, it doesn't look like he's in too much danger since he clearly values some lives more than others (particularly those in the CRC). A true altruist, on the other hand, would value all lives equally.
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Old 2012-08-22, 06:08   Link #1498
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Originally Posted by Qilin View Post
Like you said, the regulatory mechanisms that kept his behavior in check during that incident were well intact, so any objections he might have had were not expressed.
Triple_R responded pretty well. We all condemn others. Taichi wanted Inaba to help Yui along with others but she just turned her back to the whole issue. How can you expect a person such as Taichi who can't stand seeing others suffer to be emotionally void at that?
I think the problem is that there's been a misunderstanding between the two. Inaba does want to help Yui, but she's afraid of hurting her and her friends. But instead of accepting this, she turns to an interpretation of herself that she's most familiar with and paints herself as this selfish person who doesn't want to get involved. She thinks her reason for not helping Yui is because she doesn't care, when in reality it's just the opposite. Taichi simply works with what Inaba gives him.
I agree that the idea of subverting Taichi's white knight persona is a much more interesting one since it makes the generic "good guy" harem lead more bearable and less Gary Stuish. I like what they're trying to do with his character, but the way the series is written, it's making it seem like being a helpful human being is somehow deranged.

Quote:
While, of course, we can blame the present circumstances for that incident. It is undeniable that he expressed what he truly felt at the moment, so we can't fully absolve him of responsibility for his actions. Therefore, you can't say that he wasn't himself since it was just as much a part of him as his usual personality, just that it's a part that he usually keeps hidden.
I said before that this "true desire" thing seems to be a mixture of general and situational feelings. The way I see it, just because someone says how they feel doesn't mean these feelings are identical when they go through all the mental filters and rational thinking. People don't think straight when they get overly emotional, they let one emotion take control of them. I'd say in such cases an emotional outburst is only a part of how a person truly feels and it doesn't necessarily hold true in its entirety.
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Old 2012-08-22, 06:48   Link #1499
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Originally Posted by Blonto View Post
I think the problem is that there's been a misunderstanding between the two. Inaba does want to help Yui, but she's afraid of hurting her and her friends. But instead of accepting this, she turns to an interpretation of herself that she's most familiar with and paints herself as this selfish person who doesn't want to get involved. She thinks her reason for not helping Yui is because she doesn't care, when in reality it's just the opposite. Taichi simply works with what Inaba gives him.
I agree that the idea of subverting Taichi's white knight persona is a much more interesting one since it makes the generic "good guy" harem lead more bearable and less Gary Stuish. I like what they're trying to do with his character, but the way the series is written, it's making it seem like being a helpful human being is somehow deranged.
I confess that I might have let my dislike of his character influence my interpretation, but he's simply a character I can't ever come to terms with. So far, it helps that Tachi's "selflessness" is portrayed as something pathological, but with just that to go on, his character is still impossible for me to empathize with. We're going to need much more substance to it if he is to be seen as a human character.

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I said before that this "true desire" thing seems to be a mixture of general and situational feelings. The way I see it, just because someone says how they feel doesn't mean these feelings are identical when they go through all the mental filters and rational thinking. People don't think straight when they get overly emotional, they let one emotion take control of them. I'd say in such cases an emotional outburst is only a part of how a person truly feels and it doesn't necessarily hold true in its entirety.
Obviously, it only represents a part of the person's actual feelings, but why should that have to mean that such things can just be dismissed?

Emotion is as much a part of the self as reason. Everyday social behavior is the result of the interplay between those two elements. However, one's emotions tend to be less apparent as they are usually suppressed to a certain extent by regulatory mechanisms controlled by reason. In that sense, it could be said that our cognitive faculties serve to obscure certain aspects of the self, particularly the less desirable ones. It's just that people tend to focus solely on reason as representative of the self.
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Old 2012-08-22, 07:27   Link #1500
Obelisk ze Tormentor
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Originally Posted by Qilin View Post
Obviously, it only represents a part of the person's actual feelings, but why should that have to mean that such things can just be dismissed?

Emotion is as much a part of the self as reason. Everyday social behavior is the result of the interplay between those two elements. However, one's emotions tend to be less apparent as they are usually suppressed to a certain extent by regulatory mechanisms controlled by reason. In that sense, it could be said that our cognitive faculties serve to obscure certain aspects of the self, particularly the less desirable ones. It's just that people tend to focus solely on reason as representative of the self.
I think all people have negative impulses/emotion deep down (as well as good impulses/emotion). Yes, even good people have the bad ones too. The only differences are the degree & frequency and how we control them with our reason. Taichi just happen to be forced to express his in its rather purest form to Inaba (thanx to our supertroll friend).

So I’m not dismissing emotion as the integral part, but emotion is just one ingredient to make human mind’s products. Thus, emotion alone does not necessarily represent how good or bad a person is. Much like your lower body can’t represent your entire physical figure. We have to consider the entirety.
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