A Resilient Japan: GANBARE!!

By Eddy Montilla

Many Japanese people say that a Japanese heart can only be understood by another Japanese heart. And I would like to add a humorous touch (I think) by saying: Sometimes, they don’t even understand themselves!

     One of the expressions more frequently heard in Japan is GANBARE! GANBARIMASHOO! It is something like “try very hard”, “put a lot effort” in English. For many foreigners that study or know Japanese, the meaning of this expression ends there: A mere expression translated into their native language. The meaning is in their brains, but not in their hearts.

     “Ganbare” means more than that. It’s like some kind of energy and inspiration able to connect the heart of all Japanese people simultaneously. And that’s why it has an incomparable value. Thank you, sorry are also frequently repeated by them, but these words could have a touch of courtesy and appearance. However, this is not the case when they talk about ganbarimashoo.

     The concept of synergy is not well known by many people. Do you know why? It is because we were raised and educated to be individualist. That gives us an answer (not the only one) to why so many countries have not been able to develop themselves or why we can see so many poor people in advanced nations (examples of these nations are not necessary). Synergy means the extra energy and motivation that you can get when two or more people work together, something impossible to obtain when a person relies on his or her abilities.

     Thanks to this word, “Ganbare”, Japan has been able to recover from a lot of misfortunes: The atomic bombs, earthquakes, etc. to build a well-balanced economic power. The meaning of “Ganbare” has a strong impact not only on exceptional examples like these ones, but also on people’s daily life. “Ganbarimashoo” makes a child studies diligently and provide his or her parents the strength to endure their daily hard work. No doubt about it. The Japanese will get their country back on its feet again despite all damage caused by the earthquake and tsunami in Miyagi Prefecture.

     I, for my part, would like to tell them that, after listening so many people here saying Ganbare in spite of having lost their houses and parents, I finally learned the greatness, value and beauty of this world. I hope I can apply it to my own life and invite all of you to do the same too: GANBARE!! GANBARIMASHOO!!

Copyright 2011 by littlethings4all.wordpress.com. All rights reserved.

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