Filipe Madureira © 2018
There are countless ingredients that make up the human body and mind, like all the components that make up me as an individual with my own personality. Sure I have a face and voice to distinguish myself from others, but my thoughts and memories are unique only to me, and I carry a sense of my own destiny. Each of those things are just a small part of it. I collect information to use in my own way. All of that blends to create a mixture that forms me and gives rise to my conscience. I feel confined, only free to expand myself within boundaries.
Take fireflies for example. Try to imagine their beauty, the evanescent beauty of their lives, which don't even last a week. Female fireflies flash their lights only to have intercourse with the males; males twinkle just to have intercourse with the females. And once their mating has finished, they die. In short, their reproductive instinct is the single, absolute reason for fireflies to live. In that simple instinct and their simple world, no kind of sadness can intervene. This is precisely why fireflies are so fleetingly beautiful.
It is said that a long time ago, an aristocrat named Hatanoirogu was practicing archery using as a target a mochi (rice-cake). Suddenly, the mochi turned into a white crane and flew away. Then the crane landed and transformed into rice plants, which grew producing a rich crop. Understanding that this was a message from gods (kami), the aristocrat built on that place a shrine dedicated to Inari, the kami of rice and agriculture.