March 16, 2005

Naruto 2

Just before the main matches of the Chuunin Exam were to commence, Naruto met Hyuuga Hinata at the Genin training grounds. And they were talking about screwing up.

Two things I must note. It is true that when Naruto says he screws up all the time, but that also means that he gets up after each screwup. Hinata perceptively notices that it is getting up after each mistake, rather than not making any mistakes at all, that is the true strength. This is rather interesting, when you realize that mistakes under the Bushido code were punished by sepukko or mutilation of the fingers.

Obviously, if you made as many mistakes as Naruto did in the old Japan, you wouldn't be around to learn from them.

The second thing I realized was that Naruto is quite a leader. In both the American and the Japanese usage of the term. The word leader is taken directly from English, in the Naruto anime. Part of the English word definition of leader, "is to inspire". Naruto certainly does inspire many people. [SPOILER]

People like Gaara of the Desert, Hyuuga Neji, Hinata, and Sakura. They look at Naruto, and it brings out hidden strengths in each of them. Even the Sannin and Jounins are impressed with Naruto, because they underestimated him at first impressions. Many leaders have been underestimated at least once in their careers.

When Naruto's sensei told him that Akatsuki was out to get him, he reacted by being quite optimistic and wanting to get stronger in order to defend themself. No gloom and doom for this kid. That is an attitude that helps to separate Old Japan from New Japan, and real leaders from fake leaders (Bush vs Kerry).

Relevant blog links
First part of Naruto articles.
Post I did on Japanese Culture

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