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[Earthsea mainpage] Gedo Senki
(Tales from Earthsea)

Goro Miyazaki's Blog Translation (Page 4)

19th December 2005

Part 4 - Comprehension Changed to Real Understanding.[1]

Why did the headstrong boy Ged that I sympathised with in Book One get up my nose when I read it again 20 years later?
I thought about the reasons.
I came up with several abstract ones.

For example: Society is appreciably more mature now than it was then. (Definitely not in a good sense), and ideas like 'If I try, I can change myself' and 'Maybe we can change the world' hold less reality for me.


to take a broader swipe
Due to the terrorist attacks of 9/11, people saw that even the strength of a superpower like America couldn't control anything. Knowing this, they turned eyes of doubt (all questions of good and evil aside) toward "strength" itself, and fell into nihilism.

and so on.

I tried to think of a whole lot of explanations, but none of them seemed to fit. Probably, as a result of my accumulated years, Ged's attitude of:

"Everything between heaven and earth is mine, I control it and command it. Now, I am at the centre of the world."[2]

only thinking of himself, blind to those around him, now worries me, I guess.

On the other hand, the words of the Master Summoner, that I quote here for the second time:

" ...as a man's real power grows and his knowledge widens, ever the way he can follow grows narrower; until at last he chooses nothing, but does only and wholly what he must do."[3]

have become something that I don't just understand with my head, but feel in my bones to be true.


Today was a really cold day.
The Zelkova leaves that had blocked my view until now have now completely fallen away, and from the rooftop of the studio I can see a sublime view of Mt. Fuji in the distance with the setting sun behind it.[*]

Translator's Notes

[1]: Rikkai (intellectual understanding) is contrasted with Jikkan (actual sensation)

[2]: The original English is: "Between, all things were his to order, to command. He stood at the centre of the world." ("A Wizard of Earthsea"p. 62). The Japanese translation as quoted here seems to fit the director's comments better.

[3]: A Wizard of Earthsea, p. 73

[*]: Due to air pollution Mt. Fuji is usually only visible from Tokyo on clear winter days. The view is often obstructed by high-rise buildings etc.

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