Slog - Ikigai - words

Interestingly, in the Okinawa prefecture are some of the longest lived and happiest people on earth. Diet, genetics, and lifestyle are the factors that lead to a long and healthy life. There are other places with long lived happy people; Sardinia (Italy), Nicoya (Costa Rica), Ikaria (Greece); and Loma Linda (USA). Bhutan is regularly ranked as the happiest place on earth. Bhutan does not allow many tourists to enter their country and relocating there is nigh on impossible.

It's a slog. This is a good word. I came across another good word yesterday while meandering about information on longevity. I should remember that word shortly. It's the other word I want to bring up, not slog. It is just a slog to get through a bramble of misremembered words, phrases and thoughts crowding my head. Slog, to undertake an arduous and demanding task, to work tirelessly, to march forward in difficult conditions. Slog. The word is only a couple of hundred years old. I wonder, before the word was created, did we slog? Life seems so much easier in a fantastically poorly remembered past.


That's the word. it is Japanese. You can google the word and read about a philosophy of life encapsulated in this word. In the westernized version it is essentially paints four aspects of life; what one loves, what one gets paid for, what you can give to the world, and what you are good at. Combing various aspects of these gives you mission, passion, vocation, and profession. If... IF... you happen to reach the point where all four intersect this is Ikigai.

NEVER LET IT GO. Just saying. 


But that is not what Ikigai is. Not really. I am not certain myself but I am certain it is more than that. Taking joy in the moment, being alive, that sense of living. Maybe that's what it is.

There you go - two words for today and a couple of thoughts.


Edohiguma said…
I think the closest thing to ikigai in the west is "joie de vivre". It's not just the things that you have or do or get out of life. It's also the attitude towards all of it.

A curious detail with ikigai is that, when you look through studies about it, it shifts depending on the generation of people with it. It seems to be very influenced by current culture.