Japanese Social Hierarchy: Order or Constraint?

As we discuss all aspects of freedom, this event aims to open up a conversation about hierarchy, order, authority and discipline as an essential part of a functioning society. We will study Japanese social structure as an example of such a model.

Japanese society consists of intimate hierarchical relationships which emerged due to necessities of life over a long period of time. In the past, relationships were regulated by clans to ensure trust, respect and fulfillment of social obligations. Nowadays, the world looks different but acknowledging hierarchy and acting within certain boundaries supports societal order and structure. There is a belief that a true democracy is not possible without equality and equality assumes absence of hierarchy. And at the same time, Japan offers us a different example of a working system which values subordination, democracy, duties and roles. Just like there are natural constraints in nature and our own body, there is an argument to accept limitations. This talk is designed to explore a possibility to see structure and constraints as a critical part for understanding freedom.

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Azumi Uchitani is an Intercultural business consultant, keynote speaker, writer, artist and founder of Japanese SALON art & culture, based in the Netherlands. She is a two-times TEDx speaker, appearing Dutch TV and media and delivering talks to an international audience in Europe and in the US.
Azumi is on a mission to build an essential bridge between Japan and Europe, helping global leaders discover Japanese ancient wisdom beyond culture, teaching how to apply its wisdom in everyday life, act with inner peace and create
conscious leadership and fulfilling life. Azumi decodes the complexity of Japanese culture, tradition, philosophy, spirituality and unspoken rules into a simple essence of wisdom. She was born into a traditional spiritual Japanese family and raised with the teachings of Shingon Buddhism and Shinto. The spiritual and cultural practices, such as tea ceremony, flower arrangement, calligraphy have always been a part of her life, besides that, her grandmother was a kimono maker.
Her insights, a series of talks are available on her YouTube channel “5 minutes on Japanese Wisdom” on YouTube.


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