“The world is not beautiful, therefore it is.”

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This is my first journey through the “100 Days of Anime” Challenge, an ambitious project that I’ll be taking. For the full list of prompts, click here.

“Name your favorite quote from any anime character.”

While looking into one of my fall favorites this season I stumbled across this quote that I immediately fell in love with.

“The world is not beautiful, therefore it is.”

Short and simple yet profound in its own way, the quote perfectly embodies everything I was hoping for in this season’s “Kino no Tabi,” or Kino’s Journey. Yet while it was a perfect fit for the show’s themes, it was a quote that somewhat clashed with my own world views.

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The world is not beautiful. No, far from it. Sadness, hunger, despair – only a few maladies out of hundreds that plague millions every day, from the people living in warzones to the smallest animal. Call me a pessimist, but I refused to acknowledge this so-called beauty when the ugly reality is shrouded from my view. Typing this up from the comfort of my room while someone else is living paycheck by paycheck – it’s almost an affront to those very people, for me to proclaim that the world is beautiful without basis. Nature is beautiful, sure. But the world?

Kino begs to differ. A tale about a girl’s travels with the company of a talking motorbike, this show lit up a sense of curiosity and wonder that I didn’t know I had.

It made me yearn to travel.

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To see and experience this worldly disparity with my own eyes. Maybe not to the extreme of facing off in a gunfight, but to experience living life on nothing but what’s on my back. The rumored hospitality to distant travelers that I wouldn’t find here in the comfort of my chair, the stories that come with the journey, and traveling just for the sake of traveling. This quote ignited my inner adventurer. Dreamy and somewhat misguided, sure! But an adventurous spirit, nevertheless. True, the world may not be beautiful, but because it isn’t, the smaller things shine brighter. Small laundry business’ offering free dry cleaning to those looking for job interviews, small communities handing out canned goods to the needy, little gestures that restore my faith in humanity despite the ugly.

Something that I wish to experience for myself someday.

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