from Ruth Ozeki's A Tale for the Time Being
. Haruki, kamikaze recruit, former philosophy student, awaits his mission.
My, how grandiose one can become in the face of death! But I have no interest in being a Hero. In "Sein und Zeit," Martin Heidegger raises this notion of the Hero within the context of a discussion of authentic temporality, historicality, and Being-in-the-World, and while I once would have applied myself diligently to an analysis of my current predicament in Heideggerian terms, now I am finding greater satisfaction in Dōgen's Zen and my own Japanese traditions, which perhaps only proves MH right. "Language is the house of being," he once wrote, and Dōgen (a wordy man himself!) would no doubt have agreed. But MH's labyrinthine Teutonic chambers I find exhausting in my present fevered state of mind, and what draws me instead are the quiet, empty rooms of Dōgen. In between the words, Dōgen knew the silences.
More novels should have appendices and bibliographies, like this one.