Q1) When are moments that you feel “Beauty” in life?
The moment I feel beauty in life is when I’m surrounded by the beauty of nature, without being captive to time, and the moment I am confronting myself. moments I feel beauty in life is when I can see people embrace love and empathy through expression of art.
Q2) What is the aspect of your country that represents the definition of beauty?
The beauty of my country, Japan, is the calm, warm weather breeze you experience during the spring, also known as the “Koharu Biyori”.
The phrase “Koharu Biyori” in Japan refers to a type of weather that is characterized by its mild and tranquil atmosphere, much like the spring season. However, this expression can also be translated as “the day when one’s heart clears”. The alternate interpretation symbolizes a moment of inner peace and unity, where one’s heart is free from any negativity or stress. Living in Tokyo, I would always be overwhelmed with the amount of workload I had, pressed by time. This stressed me out causing negativity in myself and I was constantly tormented by headaches and dizziness. However, when COVID triggered me to go to Karuizawa for quarantine, I experienced the “koharubiyori” weather making me to step back from the world and reconnect with my inner self; Lying in a hammock and taking in the surroundings allowed me to find happiness and inner peace which made me realize that happiness is something very close to us. After all, I noticed that the things you can see can change completely depending on your perspective.
Q3) What do you think is a challenge that your community is facing?
The biggest challenge that my country, Japan, faces is that many young adults cannot find a passion or dream that they would like to pursue in the future. This comes from the Japanese academic background oriented society. Rather than focusing on the individual itself, in Japan, parents, teachers, and the society only assess people depending on the students grades and academic title, making it difficult for students if they have their interests outside of academics. Therefore, the educational system does not allow students to quest or to pursue their passions and dreams. When a research was conducted to 500 high school students asking “Do you have a career you are thinking of in the future?” only 37.2% of the respondents answered “yes”. Those who answered “no” cited that they didn't know what they wanted to do as a reason. When I was also in middle school, I also did not know what I wanted to do in the future and so I hated when people asked me “What is your dream career/path?”. Now that I have a dream, I know the amusement of being able to pursue my dream, but at the same time because I understand the internal conflicts you face (when you don’t have a passion), the situation in Japan makes me urry.
Q4) Are there things you are doing to help solve that challenge?
I am currently working on a project called “Our Beauty Our Challenge” where it aims to eliminate borders between people by learning people’s “beauty” “challenges” and “dreams”. Part of this project aims for people to become more aware of the changes you can bring to society while pursuing your passion. And I believe that this can be discovered by deepening your “Beauty” “Challenge” and “Dream” of your country. It was during the “Koharubiyori” weather when I was able to find my own dream and passion - when I was able to meditate and gave myself time to reflect. Therefore, through this project, I hope people are able to seek their passion by giving themself an opportunity to reflect back to their core values and beliefs. Additionally, by also listening to different “Beauty’s” “Challenges” and “Dreams” of others, can give them inspiration which will help them to discover their own.