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Old 04-02-2002, 08:17 PM   #6
Dojo: Aikido of Norwalk
Location: CT
Join Date: Nov 2001
Posts: 205
Originally posted by erikknoops
Another problem would be that due to their different origin and context one can not expect any clear and non-ambigues relation between the concepts within those languages.
That is true. I took Latin for four years in high school. In that class we also discussed quite a bit of philosophy among other things. One thing that my teacher said was that the Latin language is based nearly exclusively on tangible concepts, which made discussion of esoteric topics very difficult. Since English and romance languages are derived from Latin, the same problem occurs. Greek, however, was a great philosophical language, as it had many words that it would take paragraphs to explain in Latin or Latin-derived languages. The same is true of Japanese. There are concepts that our language simply does not address. There are so many layers to some of the Japanese terms that cannot be translated perfectly into other languages as a single term. For example, I've seen zan shin translated as "awareness," but there is so much more to it, so that translation is insufficient, and the concept is lost. I don't see the problem with leaving terms in Japanese. If it ain't broke . . .

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