10/20/2011 00:25 "People can't say, seeing goldfish can't even close their eyes even when sleeping is so pitiful and so cruel!" That was the statement that came up during my chat with friends at dinner last night. When I heard it I laughed uproariously. This seems on the surface very funny but when mulled over its meaning can be profound philosophy.
TN: The Chinese saying: “子非鱼，安知鱼之乐？”
If you are not a fish, how do you know the fish is not happy?
Means: You are not me so how do you know what I feel?
So people look at things differently because they are they, and you are you.
The Saying's background:
Two men, A and B are on the bridge over a fish pond.
A says: See how carefree those white carps are. This is fish's happiness.
B says: You're not a fish, so how do you know about a fish's happiness?
A says: You're not me, so how do you know I don't know about a fish's happiness?
B says: I'm not you, so of course I don't know you, but you are not a fish so likewise you don't know how it feels.
A: Let's revert to our starting point. You said "how do you know a fish's happiness" kind of talk. That shows you understand my understanding of fish happiness yet you still asked me. I know of the fish happiness standing on top of this bridge
Analysis of the two men's conversation.
B is highly analytical and likes to get to the bottom of things in a cognitive approach, focusing in gaining knowledge from his study of his surrounding.
A is understanding the outside world with the attitude of appreciation. His subjective feelings arise from his surrounding and looking at stuff with empathy.
If B has a logical mind, then A displays an artist's heart. And also demonstrates the sense of superiority in humans towards other animals because they see the lower animals from their own point of view and not from the animals' point of view.