Right-Brain Left-Brain – Part 5

Aug 18, 2021Blog, Culture

Right-Brain Left-Brain – Part 5

An important cultural trait of the Japanese is the practice of giving intuition presidents over reason.

Stories from the annals of the Japanese are replete with incidents where the fate of individuals, groups, and even the entire nation hung in the balance, and these critical decisions were based upon intuition, rather than reason.

intuition versus logic

In fact, the higher placed and more powerful the individual concerned in such sticky situations, the more likely they were to rely upon innate intuition.

A case in point would be the visionaries Masaru Ibuka and Akio Morita of Sony fame seeing the future of consumer electronics.

Although invented in the U$A, this is where the innate ability of the Japanese to take imported technology and intuitively reimagine it into the future kicks in.

Are you KY

In this pioneering case, the transistorized broadcast radio receiver was the object of the Japanese intuition toward the nascent consumer electronic industry.

This seminal work served to make the broader consumer electronic industry aware of the potentialities of the transistor, thanks to Sony.

As the greatest hockey player of all time Wayne Gretzky (also an example of extraordinary deep intuition) said:

I skate to where the puck is going to be, not to where it has been

Always keep these immortal words of wisdom close to the heart, and one can also now see the future via intuition.

There was a crucial word learned from very early in one’s journey in the Land Of The Rising Son.


Where the literal translation is the art (芸げい) of the stomach (腹はら) .

Alas, when referencing haragei in conversation with the younger generation, it feels as though this culturally important communication tool is being serially diluted in large part due to the Micky Mousification of Japan.

Ever had a “gut feeling?”

There, one has experienced haragei, and would do well to consciously obverse and note the haragei for future reference.

One can then tune into this curious Japanese communication protocol and relate to them at a much higher level than one could have ever imagined without understanding the importance of intuition in Japanese communication.

Think of haragei as cultural telepathy, which is being able to communicate among people on the basis of common knowledge and experience.

Interesting Facts About The Land Of The Rising Son

This has been described in an article entitled: “Japanese Telepathy: I Shin Den Shin

Another significant term is chokkan, meaning intuition.

However, this word holds much deeper significance to the Japanese as opposed to the Occidentals.

The Japanese are still homogenized to a considerable degree by strict cultural programming.

They are instilled with the same beliefs and forms of behaviour, which results in the Japanese thinking and act very much alike.

Indeed, even now the power of traditional Japanese culture is still very much evident in the attitudes and behaviour of the Japanese, and it’s still possible to assume that in group situation they react in the “Japanese Way.”

In this, the Japanese can intuit what others are thinking and what type of action to be undertaken in most circumstances, according to identifiable traditional Japanese values.

This is where intuition continues to play a critical role in non-verbal Japanese communication which resides in the “air”, or what the Japanese refer to as kuki.

One of the challenges facing those unfamiliar with these peculiar Japanese communication protocols is being able to determine whether a reaction is based on intuition or reason.

Generally speaking, reactions based on intuition reflect the traditional Japanese mindset as a whole and can be observed in the group consensus nature of Japanese society.

On the other hand, reactions based on pure reason will reflect the personal opinions or positions of the individuals, which may or may not be representative of the group consensus.

Keep in mind, group consensus still is paramount to the smooth functioning of Japanese society.

Geisha among the Cherry Blossoms

Personal opinions are accepted in informal gatherings, or in unofficial business setting like the ubiquitious drinking session, however, one ignores the importance of group consensus at one’s own peril.

There is a great deal of innate wisdom in Japanese intuition, and when marrying it with reason, it often results in a more comprehensive answer or solution to whatever discussion or problem is at hand.

How about adding the intuition element into ones own reasoned thinking for a higher level of awareness to assist when navigating this multifaceted and rapidly changing world.

The power of one's own intuition

Bonus: Continue exploring the unique Japanese regard toward the stomach (腹はら) in the podcast entitled: A Worm Told Me