Watched this movie called Jiro Dreams of Sushi on netflix today. I got so into it and I’m not particularly into sushi. But it wasn’t the sushi part that got me. This man has spent the last 75 years of his life dedicated to making and perfecting sushi. He is 85 and is still making some of the best sushi in the world.
My fascination with this flick comes from trying to find myself, my purpose if you will. Almost everybody hates their job/s, they do not get to do what they are passionate about. Then on top of that it’s hard for a lot of people to find time to even do it as a hobby. So when I see a documentary about a man who not only gets to do his passion for a living, he has been able to perfect it over and over again and is one of the best in the world, I am completely blown away.
“When you eat his sushi, you eat his philosophy.” Word. When you get to express your species being you are philosophizing in action. It is where theory meets activity, meaning his theory on sushi is lived in the sushi he creates.
He talks about how perfecting your craft, sushi for him, is like climbing up a mountain but no one knows where the top is, you just keep going. It is never perfect, it is just experimenting and honing in on your craft, on your passion. You change the world and it changes you. As you learn more about your skill you become more skilled. And as you work on it, the world changes because of it. Jiro has changed the world of sushi forever.
This is not without its limitations though. He is not living in the new society just yet.
This film speaks to these limitations, contradictions that exist because we live in the rule of capitalism. For him to be able to express his species being means it takes place at the expense of others. His workers do not get to contribute to the critical part of his practical-critical. He tells them exactly how they do it, it is still a job to them even if it isn’t as much to him. Then they talk about the limitations on what they serve. How the fish that used to be available isn’t anymore. Businesses don’t consider the environment and so when fishermen must catch as much as possible to make a living, that means at the expense of the fish. Fish being taken out of the water at such a high rate means less reproducing, less fish in the next season. It means the fishermen have to make a choice, less money now for more later? But it isn’t just the responsibility of one fisherman, and it isn’t the responsibility of one business man, it means making a change to society as a whole.
Jiro makes me think of what we are able to achieve. No, I’m not that into sushi, but that’s hardly the point. When people are allowed to do what they are passionate about they change the world. If we were living in a communist society where people could do this on all levels, think of the world we could live in. Not just with the best sushi, the best of everything. In a world that we create and master.
It reminds me of The Autobiography of Malcolm X. He talks about this man that runs numbers. He never has to write down anyones number ever. He is good with numbers. He says that he would imagine if we lived in a world where he didn’t have to hustle to make it what he could have been capable of. I think we all know people like that. In every person we get to know we learn about their passions, their skills. Everyone is good at something but it usually isn’t what they produce for the world, it is what they do for themselves to feel human when they aren’t being a slave. What if the world were full of Jiros? What a wonderful world that could be..