Toshihiko Izutsu

 21 May 2021

    Toshihiko Izutsu

 (1914 – 1993)

Area of Expertise:  Islamic Studies, Theology and Philosophy

The Book selected: Koran (translated in Japanese), Iwanami Shoten, 1957

                                    The Birth of Islam, Chuo Koron, 1979

                                    Islamic Philosophy, Chuo Koron, 1991

Alma Mater: Keio University

Achievements: He is the first and only modern philosopher from the viewpoint of global standard’s observation up to this point in Japan. The status was allowed only for the limited area of academic research, because as reality of politics/media, the concept of Public – of or concerning the people as a whole – (OED) never existed in Japanese society. Watching all those years of economic struggles in the past three-decades, we can now confirm that the Japanese political reforms (such as Meiji Restoration or Showa New Constitution) were implemented by neither modern revolutionary way nor a solid social scientific method.  

The Origin of Economic Failure

Despite all-remarkable materialistic progress made in modern times, therefore, Japan had to remain/even strengthen its status as an outdated ideologue in East Asia, far away from the reality of global politics. As an indicator of such failing economic policy, more than half of economists are now belatedly arguing; – Japanese economy is collapsing. But nobody knows how to retore it. It’s hidden so deep inside the country’ politics under the discouragement of free speeches in various forms. What was the origin of this economic failure in the post-war Japan? Here opinions would split further and could cause furore elsewhere again in Japan. 

Nevertheless, this ancient polity was in short, as Ichisada Miyazaki described it pertinently; – certainly better than nothing. Historically, there was indeed no other choice for Japan. But this die-hard ancient political core refused to be tamed even in the 21st century. Now the Japanese cannot afford to enjoy such consolation either, in widening the ever-isolated negative gap of inherited Japanese politics, as the globalization vigorously progressed further. We then suddenly realize an important missing fact that the Japanese never understood how to develop economics properly, or rather, they virtually disregarded all the related modern thoughts of social science, in both its pre-war and post-war periods.

Why Japan Cannot Be Modernized?

Then, why is Izutsu so precious in this crisis? His greatest contribution is; he, and only he in Japan, explained the reason/formula to this fundamental answer required for the subject of Japanese modernization. Indeed, he logically analysed its social scientific mechanism. For this serious political reality could lead to many questions and answers in Japan, without any endings. Why Japan cannot be modernized? Because Japanese have no proper modern economic system, for instance. But every answer is bound to result in further thoughts and questions; why Japan cannot establish their own modern legal or economic system? At this flashing point, however, all these inquiries would be suddenly converged on one eventual answer. Because Japan has no philosophy. 

His translation of Koran into Japanese is regarded as the most reliable and outstanding (rather impossible to surpass). He took utmost cares for translating this Sacred Book of extraordinary nature. He referred Gustav Fluegel’s most credible interpretation in Europe, as the basis of his direct translation from Arabic. He further exploited all available intellectual means. The basic trend of translation was determined by most credible study at the time of al-Baidawi. He was also aware of all progresses and criticisms appeared, including Noeldeke in Europe. Also, he rejected all unfounded hypotheses made, to understand rationally the original Arabic text in meditation. 

As he would have certainly noticed, the subject is so important for Japan. But the answer is not easy to get directly from Europe or European history. As everything is already established in an advanced manner in their system, nobody is interested in the original link today that happened long time ago. Above all, it was not Europe to launch this search for the forgotten philosophy. Hence, many Western experts also have no idea on this. No war was required to attain this principle, but by only some discussions on this vital reform with the involvement of few people, even though, it was politically decisive. 

It was the advance of Islamists eastward to initiate and deal with this entire spiritual development by connecting West and East. And who could have realised this specific historical importance, if one studied only in the remote islands of Japan, not knowing what was happening in the Centre of the World? Izutsu’s thoughts and the extent of his global research grew under the exceptional circumstances, where he took the professorships of McGill University, Montreal, and later, Institute of Philosophy, Teheran, in addition to his extended experiences in the Arabian Peninsula and Europe.

The Islamist scholars such as al Kindi and Ibn Sina/Avicenna (in Latin), decisively contributed to the development of modern philosophy from the newest Islamic/modern religion viewpoint. Kindi lived as Arab and Sina as Persian. And that powerful influence over the entire West that reached Japan already by the 16th century. Izutsu was convinced from these extraordinary studies, theology and philosophy are ultimately different expressions, which are based on the same fact. And Japan do not have such vital fundamental modern concept. So how could they modernize themselves?

Modernization Began in the West

The ancient Japanese were taught every good thing came from China. Indeed, they imported all, including ideology and writings. But the shape of China is getting worse day by day. More alarmingly, it is now clear that Chinese were not the leader of the world and they never will be, as comprehensively studied and verified by the leading Japanese historians. Then, for what should the ‘modern’ Japanese be striving now? – this thesis must be demonstrated.  Sticking at the ancient ideology and to persevere cannot be the answer. 

The Japanese must take a new credible course for prosperity exactly as their revolutionary ancestors did it in the 7th century. From this aspect, the current problem of Japan is all about Metaphysics, as the incredible Toshihiko Izutsu embraced this salient modern concept in Japan. In case of progress in Physics, Sumer first invented bronze technology in c. 4000BC and the world’s first writing system with cuneiform characters by c. 3300BC. Soon Egyptian/Hamite took an initiative in c. 3100BC. They invented hieroglyph characters. And the unified Egypt (Upper and Lower) was emerging as the richest and powerful state with its various inventions, such as magnificent stone architecture and use of chariot for its military. Men were clearly to differentiate themselves from the rest of wild animals. 

Akkadian/Semite followed (c. 2350 – 2150BC), and after an era of divided regional conflicts, Babylonia/Aramaean/Semite (c. 1894 – 1600BC) were to rise in Mesopotamia. Arians/Indo-European also invaded to the area of Indus civilization in c. 1500BC. The people founded the original Indus civilization (c. 2500 – 1500BC) had bronze technology, writing system and town-planning for their cities in Mohenjo Daro and Harappa. We assume, therefore, they attributed to Mesopotamia. 

Thus, the new economy based on international trade extended to Mesopotamia, Egypt and Indus civilizations and all of their adjacent areas. Notably, the world’s first code (of laws) was already compiled in Babylonia. All powerful leaders were trying to get more authority and used religion as their political means. They praised sun, moon, animal, bird or king/emperor/sage, and all sorts of human-created gods/Idols, including shamanism, were named as a god everywhere. 

With the rise of civilizations, state’s driven economic expansion began with new ideas and many trade opportunities also created for migration movements. The ancestors of Indo-Europeans including Greek tribes moved to Europe in c. 2000BC. Around the same time, Persian/Indo-European made already contacts with Semite people in Mesopotamia. Meanwhile, iron technology was invented by another Indo-European, Hittite (c. 1680 -1190BC) who immigrated into rocky Anatolia/Asia Minor and mixed with other inhabitants. Together with their own, they used several languages including Sumerian. Hittite Kingdom had also their legal system. Notably, state/political machine started to play an important role, where maritime economy was getting the upper hand. 

Sometime, war was necessary to solve trade dispute. The Old Testament was finally conceived and started to develop in Jewish land (c. 1230BC), after Israeli/Semite tribes had been enslaved for the second time, this time by the strongest power of Egypt, and then they were saved miraculously. The Holy Bible required more than 1000 years of history to assemble. The West was slowly entering into the modern era by this profound initiative.

Phoenicians/Semite invented their first alphabet in c. 1200BC from Egyptian letters. Greece also made its own alphabet, thereby started the first national state of Indo-European people by c. 800BC. In the 8th century BC, Assyrians/Semite emerged as a powerful military state with advanced iron technology, the mercenary of Scythian/Indo-European cavalry and the help of Aramaic merchants based in Syria. They expanded their territory from Mesopotamia via Syria to Egypt/Nile Delta in the 7th century BC but their state was short-lived. 

As noted by Herodotus, the Phoenicians by the order of Egyptian King sailed in 600BC from Red Sea to all around African Continent and returned via Mediterranean to Egypt after three years of voyage. Accelerated technological progress led the entire movements of the world economy, while new modern technological competition was also causing frictions among peoples in widening area. 

The Impact of Alexander’s Expedition

Numerous migrations of Indo-European people to the West seem constantly taking place in long period of time span. Hypothesis applied here is that an advanced modern civilization always attracts people. But many tribes could not establish/keep their state by some reasons (including not-having own writing system) and absorbed by others or joined them voluntarily. In such constant struggles, Achaemenian Persia successfully built the world’s first Indo-European empire (from 538 to 330BC) by conquering the others in the traditional world except Greece. 

Then, Alexander the Great (356 – 323BC) reconquered all the civilized world with the learning centre in Alexandria in Egypt. He further founded; the modern political concept of freedom and the modern economic means of unified currency for his empire. At this stage, Indo-Europeans ruled the entire urbanized area of Europe, North Africa, West and Central Asia. China was still divided in several kingdoms and fighting each other with bronze weaponry. However, the Mauryan empire (321 – 232BC) in India and the first Qin/Chinese empire ((221 – 207BC) were to be born, following the extraordinary impact and influence of his adventure that firmly connected the Eurasian world. Alexander’s empire was vanished in history but his concept of international community began to expand ever since.

Meanwhile, Romans/Indo-European gradually built up their new political system by 270BC and emerged as the greatest empire by AD150 in the centre of Europe. In the Eurasian theatre, a massive Germanic/Indo-European people continued to move towards the West and contributed to the successful expansion of the Roman empire and beyond. Tacitus (c. 56 – 120) recorded: In his time, Germanic tribes were still divided in so many territories, and he could not name or count them all (estimated as over 50). Roman Empire took them first as slave but their role of mercenary soon became prominent. The Germanic power was massively enhanced by new horse-riders arrival in the period of Barbarian invasions, in particular, by Attila’s (406 -453) joint force of Hun/Ural-Altaic and Ostrogoths/Indo-European from a region of Volga. 

Similarly, the first Slavonic state of Bulgaria emerged in the 7th century. They were a mixture of Bulgar/Ural-Altaic and Slavic/Indo-European tribes. Together with its own advanced states, the seafarer Viking/Norman/Germanic took the initiative to conquer/help national states in France, Britain, Ireland, Russia and others including the Islamic occupied territories in Mediterranean during the period from c. 800 to 1200.  Many states were formed with multi-racial reality but kept in one by its own language.

Following the traditions of Roman/Frankish and Byzantine empires, all of those people in Europe accepted Christianity. What was the motivation for these migration movements after all? New technologies and economic benefits and opportunities represented by the solid civilization of Roman Empire/Modern West, what else? The better future for their children, perhaps. All wanted to modernize themselves.

Chinese/Sino-Tibetan tribes did not participate in such Eurasian migration trend, because they had their own economic advantages. They preferred to immigrate towards the periphery of their own land due to its economic factors. First, China could enjoy rather its isolated environment, far away from serious competitions in the West. Secondly, their unique geopolitical assets and natural resources. Unlike the Nile Delta of Egypt, China had two gigantic rivers and their tributaries (many Chinese say, three, including Huai-he in the middle). It was paramount for the benefits of Chinese economy to secure all areas of these natural boundaries and beyond for its future expansion. 

By protecting and expanding these natural resources by river and its tributaries, the prosperity of China could be assured. The Chinese arch-bureaucracy was thus born to control this economy. Because of this geopolitical advantage, which is of self-generating nature, China always remained regional on their own terms. Above all, they had to keep their own peculiar economic system, despite their versatile culture. Rather problematically, this ‘own land’ could expand ‘theoretically’ depending on the strength of Chinese military power. And we need to include the entire East Asia and Western Pacific today (well, at least for the time being).

Indo-European and Ural-Altaic Exodus

As confirmed by Alexander’s expedition (written by Arrian), all oases in Central Asia and Eurasian steppes were still Indo-European land in his time. But two centuries later, this situation began to change drastically. Learning formidable cavalry strategy including iron technology from an Indo-European tribe, many Ural-Altaic tribes gathered and gradually spread to the north of China. For the first time, they threatened China as a powerful military power in 215BC. Chinese first called them ‘Bandit’. After the conflicts of almost three centuries, their base in the Altai mountains was finally crushed by the Han’s army in AD91, and many of them fled/spread to westwards. 

Yet Han’s victory was not decisive, as new Ural-Altaic tribes soon emerged in even a larger region. By the 5th century, they controlled all the steppes of Eurasia. Some Indo-Europeans joined/racially mixed with them. The fall of the most successful Han dynasty (202BC – AD220) indicated that the expansion of China had stalemated with their traditional method. China was seeking for a new opportunity. Only these horse-riders could provide this new course for China, and the direction of Chinese expansion was adjusted to westward. The focus seemed toward Central Asia where the Han empire had tried twice to take the control but failed in both attempts. 

The capital of Ural-Altaic/Chinese Empires of Sui (581 – 617) and Tang (618 – 907) was based in Chang-an (the name was Daxing under Sui) in the West China, the largest and international city in the East/World at the time, situated not too far from the Indo-European land. The Tang China was vigorously trying to expand the Chinese Global Empire by influencing Persians and Indians. The Koreans and the Japanese/both Ural-Altaic firmly joined them in this global venture. 

The mighty Tang Dynasty (618 – 907) reached to its zenith under the powerful leadership of Emperor Xuanzong (reigned: 712 – 755). Many Indo-Europeans also participated in his Chinese expansionary initiative. General An Luxan (705 – 757) distinguished himself by his military prowess as regional commander was once renowned with his 8,000 strong foreign bodyguards and 140,000 cavalry division. 

In the West, only the leaders/traders in Arabia knew the existence of this colossal danger coming from the East, and fully prepared for the eventual outcome. They had to integrated Persians firmly to their camp to win. Supported by Shiah branch, under the more theocratic Abbasid rule, the capital moved to ‘City of Peace’ or Bagdad, which was then a small village of Iranian inhabitants, but soon became the largest city in the West. Meanwhile, Abbasid Islamic forces shattered an ambitious Chinese onslaught headed by Korean General Gao Xianzhi at the Battle of Talas River basin in 751. 

The global expansionistic trend of Tang China was to peak out from this historical defeat and never returned to its former glory. Facing this reality, the drift of Indo-European involvement in China was also terminated by their emigration as the subsequent economic progress accelerated in the West as a whole. Many of Ural-Altaic tribes, such as Bulgar, Finnic, Hungarian, Turk and other Central Asian Turki also joined the West by establishing their own states or by joining the others. 

Together with other Western experts, Eiji Mano believes that the ancestors of Europeans, Indo-Aryans and Iranians once lived in Tarim basin/Indo-European heartland, where all three different types of the ancient documents/languages were recovered. To reject this, somebody have to find the reason why the people who spoke so-called Centum/European language (include British and Irish) once lived here. The event was developed likely in some unknown time-frame of human movements in 2 million years originated from warmer Africa in any case. But the linguistic classification is one of the greatest discoveries of the modern social science as the ‘Champion of Multi-Linguists’ – Hajime Nakamura asserted.

A phenomenal change was noticeable among the inhabitants of Central Asia by the 9th century. As Professor Mano further analysed, this revolutionary trend could be described in three words; Settlement (from nomadic life), Turkification and Islamization, where the old Indo-European speakers disappeared (but the new returned in various forms). Despite such changes of political environment, the Chinese territory was expanding in the long run, while its arch-bureaucracy was keen to develop its economy incessantly. 

Under Emperor Yang-di of the Sui Dynasty, the construction of superb canal networks began to connect the central with northern and southern regions, in enhancing the war efforts against Koguryo Korea. Mamoru Tonami explained; Yang-di ordered the construction of canal (width of 60 m) networks of total length of around 1500 km, which is still in use, with some modifications, today. 

Then, based on these massive infrastructures, commercial developments in the Central and Southern China were further pursued under the Northern and Southern Sung dynasties (from 960 – 1279) as many urban commercial centres with a large population appeared alongside of canals, as Masaaki Chikusa noticed. China was always working on their own economic enhancement by the arch-bureaucracy, despite the fierce competitions of factional politics in their state power. 

Mongolians/Ural-Altaic expanded the world’s ever-largest empire spread over Eurasia from 13th to 14th century. But their political control only by military power could not produce an enduring result. The territory of Southern Sung was absorbed into one regime of the Mongolian Yuan Dynasty (1206 – 1368) that paved the way for the powerful Chinese-proper Empire of Ming (1368 – 1643). Emperor Yongle (reigned: 1402 – 1424) sent his fleet headed by Admiral Zheng He with the largest ships in the world at the time to South East Asia, India, Persia and the East Coast of Africa for 7 times voyage made in 25 years. The mighty Ming Dynasty was, however, precipitated to fall by the Japanese invasion to Korea (1592 – 1598) with a new Western military technology directly arrived from Portugal. 

In this long-term struggle between Chinese and Ural-Altaic nations, only Koreans and Japanese kept their independence. Again, there were other races involved inside both Greater Korea and Northern Japan (more than 50% chance of including some Indo-Europeans). But how could they manage to keep their independence? First, they had to learn Chinese to communicate officially. Furthermore, by developing their own variant of Chinese ideology/political system under the acknowledgement of Chinese suzerainty, and of course, maintaining credible military power to resist. One more principle had to be kept; they never became Chinese emperor.

Following the Islamic/Iranian rules in the Northern India since 1192, Timurid/Ural-Altaic Prince Babur, pressurized by Uzbeks, decided to move out from his native land to establish the Islamic Mughal/Mongol empire (1526 – 1858) in India. His empire was the precursor to the British rule over India. In the Chinese front, Mongolians were trapped and absorbed into the Ural-Altaic/Qing Dynasty (1644 – 1912). But the Qing people had to give up their own homeland of Manchuria, together with Mongolia and the Uygur territory/Xinjiang to China when their long-reign ended. The system always worked perfectly well for the Chinese purpose. Mongolians eventually regained their independence, thanks to the intervention of Stalin’s Soviet Russia.

Despite the danger imposed currently on international community, many people and intellectuals in the West don’t know about such basic history in the East. More importantly, this historically-inherited political reality doesn’t match with the current status of China as its permanent membership of the UN Security Council, the organization that must be strengthened in the future or rather urgently. Should the world’s modernization be ended here? Absolutely not.

To solve such grave international crisis and in order to form its own strategy, there are many things, the West must be aware of about the reality of ‘Communist’ China and ‘Capitalist’ Japan. Above all, how to dismantle this ancient ideology in the East. We have been talking about so far, the political influence exercised by China toward Japan. But we need to understand one more important thing. After the modernisation of Japan in the 19th century, the direction of such status was actually reversed from Japan to China due to its ideological convertibility, despite the fact that the operational difference between the two remains huge.

No Philosophy in the East

Then, why could only Izutsu’s argument clarify the nature of problems facing the Japanese nation and the world? Since the Meiji Restoration, Japanese belatedly tried to learn military industry or modern physics from the West. Only political system that the Japanese had was the one imported from China. But we need a fundamental question to ask on this political system in the East. How could one learn physics without metaphysics? This is no longer academic matter alone. It actually covers the entire politics/economy of East Asia because both South Korea and China developed their ‘modern’ economic system based on the Japan Model. Instead of relying on the original inventor, the West – and there was no such choice either for them, without philosophy.

As clarified by Izutsu, Islamic/Western philosophy was largely influenced by the Greek philosophy/Aristotle in particular. Philosophy is nothing to do with Confucianism as Confucius/Chinese mandarins never got interested in such matters, as clearly written in his Analects. Of course, politicians can compromise sometimes. But the principle of running economy/modern economics must get hold of a proper social infrastructure and effective politics as its functioning instrument. 

An economic theory should take place generally. The reality is, however, as once Thomas Robert Malthus properly argued in his Principle of Political Economy; it must have operated very differently upon the different countries of the commercial world, according to the different circumstances in which they were placed. Malthus is absolutely right. Such difference in the East could be far/unimaginably greater. 

In a systematic deterioration of economy, where ideology/good tradition is no longer able to take the political role, nobody can stop the on-going debacles…without any hope. Historically, here a regime change had to come forward in China/Japan. But such old economic mechanism is no longer workable today. Unless they (who?) successfully introduce the necessary philosophy to rationalise the ailing bad politics. In the current global crisis, the economists in the world are still not aware of such systematic defects of the global economy. It’s not about the policy that they all prefer to discuss. How can you establish a policy without identifying the problem first? 

Miraculously, Aristotle’s precious books once forgotten in the Christian world was kept safe by the people in Syria, culturally opened under Aramaic tradition and once the richest region in trade of the Roman Empire. Under Abbasid Caliphate, the translation works to Arabic/Latin began in the 9th century. Islamic philosophers found its authentic value by their own philosophical attitude. This study was the immensely international operations, participated by many philosophers of various nationalities and different racial distinctions in the regions spread from West Asia, North Africa, Central Asia to Europe. 

Not only Greek philosophy but theology experts read Latin were also involved. Prior to this phenomenal challenge, Portuguese and Spaniards already had begun their global ventures. The Islamists influence and contributions were immense in the Iberian Peninsula under the Umayyad Caliphate/Emirate of Cordova since the 8th century, as a forerunner to the Crusade, the Renaissance and beyond. Toledo and Cordova with new global knowledges once became the learning centre of Europe.

In Europe, Christian theology of Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274) was subsequently formed by the findings of Aristotle/Islamic philosophers and his own profound studies on the subject. He recognized one of the most popular books at the time – ‘Liber de Causis’ claimed as written by Aristotle was forgery. He seemed to know all the important books of theology, as he could name the original author and title of the book, which this fake publisher copied – Izutsu explained. In particular, the Aristotle’s analysis on Metaphysics endorsed by him established the principal Christian doctrine and gave the revolutionary impact on Western Philosophy. Here philosophy firmly joined theology in the West based on fact/truth. 

Hence, Izutsu’s analysis is also directed to Christianity and Judaism or all people’s religions. He pointed out (to Japanese in mind) the principle of modernization. The God must be the Creator of the Universe including our earth, human beings, animals, bacteria and everything exist, with spirit or without, as all of these creatures were made on such extraordinary physical principles in harmony. Therefore, the unified existence of such principle/rationale and physics created by the God Almighty should be indisputable. If someone cannot recognise this marvellous fact, and says, it is not important or not worth to be respected, they must be responsible for their own ignorance. The acceptance of this principle of metaphysics is where the real modernisation of the world started. 

As clarified by him, philosophy is not about any kind of human thoughts. Instead, all philosophy must begin from this principle of theology by accepting the factual principle with the determination to learn. To understand and exercise this righteous law must be the objective of modern politics. Japan/the East has neither respect for good nor truth/rationale because the Japanese do not appreciate this principle of Metaphysics, which should generate the common sense on right and wrong for daily life including its political operations. Unlike in the British parliament, politicians are not allowed to use common sense in Japan. As such, Japanese cannot develop its rational legal system either.

Izutsu explained; the principal modern concept- common sense – is neither functioning nor existing theoretically in Japan/China without philosophy. The Japanese equivalent words – Jyoshiki – means ‘common knowledge that should be practiced in the society’ – again about human relationship, which is decided by various unknown political influencers who have no common sense. The problem is that all the Japanese/Chinese are asked to show no respect to fact, or simply ignore right or wrong, in this distorted ‘principle’. 

Only the truth is Justice. This modern principle in the UK court system cannot be sustainable in Japan. How serious is this reality? It could go disastrous without any dictator’s involvement in the East. Hence, Japanese do not care, or rather, unable to care about the responsibility, as they could not be protected by law. For instance, the Article 76 to 82 of the Japanese Constitution is for Judiciary. Supreme Court was introduced following the US system. By the subsequent development in Britain and constant coordination between Britain and America in English laws, this Chapter still matches the arrangement. However,

We see the clause in the Article 77, which English version (approved by GHQ) says; Public prosecutors shall be subject to the rule-making power of the Supreme Court.

But in its Japanese version (by unknown author/translator – so nobody can be blamed in Japan); ‘Public prosecutors’ became ‘Kensatsu-kan’ where the word ‘Public’ has gone. And this added – ‘kan’ – means arch-bureaucracy. Furthermore, the peculiar Japanese function of ‘Kensatsu’ exists neither in British nor in American legal system. The difference is not about the weakened meaning of this English phrase, as the concept itself is gone invisible. Even though, there are many decent constitutional experts in Japan and abroad, such irregularity cannot be discussed publicly in Japan or elsewhere, as we all know.

What Can Japan Contribute in This Crisis? 

Constantly stronger requirements for secularism transformed in little into the principles of managing modern global economy even in the 21st century. People in the West fought for establishing religious freedom in old days, in order not to be persecuted under tyranny. But the country like Japan/ancient state still requires philosophy as bare minimum. And even if the change of modern ideology is duly made successfully, it only means; Japan can then start a proper modernization. 

In the secular West as a whole, power of religion seems declining as more old churches are sold for shopping outlet, housing or simply closed down. Young people are attracted to technological wonders with danger attached to criminal and extortionist at every level. Or some may start to believe; they could be technically invincible and invisible. Hyper-technology without philosophy comes with a lot of unpredictable risks to democracy. In this situation, religion/philosophy must be enhanced, but how? One of effective methods would be to strengthen this worst neglected part in the world to raise the global standard. If successful, the West could see a hint and real example from Japan for their own constant reforms. 

As global climate change continued to develop alarmingly, environment problem also must be tackled by all nations in the world. It is largely physical and political problems, and some progress was made globally. But is this not the economic issue as well? As Malthus’s An Essay on the Principle of Population analysed; population, when it is unchecked, increases in a geometrical ratio but subsistence increases only arithmetical ratio. Hence, ‘power of population is indefinitely greater than the power in the earth to produce subsistence for man.’ But his foresightful warning was completely ignored.

We need to add here today the pressures from illegal immigration and its mafia business, who disregard human decency. In addition, the general costs of living expenses increased including property price/rent at the time of bubble economy must be counted to find the balance in economic downturn for the sake of immigrants themselves. And from this economic viewpoint, all conventional warfare (taking advantage of/destroying other people’s property) must be terminated at both confronting sides. Without economic rationalization, the global environment cannot be protected today. 

The current critical global assessment would be; an economic conflict is happening again between West and East. This is the second time for the West in the post-WWII, since Cold War against Communists. This time, Japan is standing at free economy’s camp disguising themselves as democracy. But this unshakable reality has not yet been recognised by the West. Have these politics in the East gone through a modern democratic election process? Or why cannot Korea be united? All these extraordinary ‘modern’ political realities must be rectified by modern diplomacy. But how?

Since the start of hard-headedly negotiated Basic Law in Hong Kong, the time seemed to pass so fast, and almost a half of the treaty-period has already expired. What could happen after 2047? Signs are all alarming and onerous. With its secretive military budgets, China is the fastest growing military power in the Pacific Ocean, aggressively threatening with its self-made territorial claims to many of their neighbours by denouncing international protocols and diplomatic practices. 

In the area of nuclear armaments, China is only country secretively expanding including the numbers of newly developed nuclear missiles and warheads without any transparency, while the old type of conflict in Gaza or other places continued sporadically in the West. Why are they investing their people’s money in such an objective? Every financial policy has its own costs. China’s overall economy entered already in a long-term declining trend with hidden domestic debts since 2015, and expected to be further worsened. The rudimentary fact is that Renminbi cannot be a hard currency. 

Can the West be ready dealing with such an unpredictable outcome? The United States with its on-going Japan disease in its economy may require some help. The world is changing and rather rapidly. In this situation, we need a reliable and economically sound country always fairly opened for the international business in the centre of the East to counter the deteriorating situation. There is virtually none at the moment. If so, does the West need to reconsider the current diffident strategy? 

The Perceivable Strategy

In this realistic global overview, we see neither ‘New Cold War’ nor ‘Regional Hegemonic Conflict’, but an Alarming Global Economic Crisis, coming out of no diplomatic initiative. The details of Winston Churchill’s diplomatic tactics toward Naziism during the WWII may be outdated today but his shrewd strategy is still valid and absolutely non-negligible. We simply cannot ignore Russia going down who has a huge stake in the East, similar to the reality of the British Commonwealth. Didn’t they learn a lesson from losing 25 million people in WWII? Of course, they did. The West needs a grand plan for confronting this unprecedented challenge in the East in addition to the same old tactics. It is important that the West is united as ever as one joint political unit of the advanced civilization to solve this quietly enlarging global ideological conflict.

The political dysfunction in the East is serious as they could not learn how to achieve their modernisation. But this comes from the pattern of economic evolution in its history, and not by their intellectual weakness or defect. You just need to study history to get a whole picture. Idea is there, at least, in Japan. And the West is wrong to assume that anyone could have mastered it (like we all did it successfully, except idiots) …without philosophy and common sense? Nobody can move to that direction under the ancient political and social pressures. If so, such passive and unimaginative notion cannot form the principal strategy of Western diplomacy. 

In this perspective, however, Japan’s strength could be their experience of unconditional surrender in the WWII itself. No great country could have emerged without this process of failure and humiliation in their politics. Many nations, such as Britain/English-speaking nations, France, Germany and Russia all learned from the similar experience of diplomatic disaster in their history to get the current political status. Japan remains as the only country suffered from atom-bomb attack in the world history, yet Japanese cannot even rationalize their nuclear energy policy properly. Instead of disregarding their attained knowledges, Japan must acquire the similar conviction and acknowledge their own mission as a state, to lead the East out of this critically dangerous scenario. 

In face of this crisis, the completely-forgotten Anglo-Japanese Alliance must be recalled. Japan and the Japanese navy with a trained British discipline was once successful by completely segregating Asia-Pacific war from the front line in Europe during the WWI. Under the current circumstance, we need a new touch and long-term commitment by strength of modern politics. Who knows, if Japan could act as good as Britain in a not-too-distant future, by connecting London and Tokyo (means Eastern Capital in Japanese/Chinese) – and economically amalgamating the West and the East? What…Sounds ridiculous. But is there any other credible alternative? 

Only Japan could be reliable economically in front of the unpredictable and colossal Chinese problems. And there is only one way to achieve this, as explained by Toshihiko Izutsu. In the worsening global situation, the West/Leader will be required to break this historical deadlock somehow. The simplified solution would be, at first, we need to found Theology/Philosophy in Japan. And from a solid Japan, it should spread to Korea and China through diplomatic negotiation. Nothing is more important than to rectify this negative ideology in the centre of international economy, as we cannot expect any progress by not having a proper Metaphysics in the approaching global age of Hyper-Physics. 

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