Tuesday, August 12, 2008

On proper use of the word "Zen"

James takes me to task, and justly so, in the comments on my previous post.

He writes: I realize this is an exercise in futility, particularly against the cultural weight of the Daily Show's "moment of Zen," but I am saddened to see my religious tradition trivialized by this precious term being reduced to mean non-sequitur...

Or not...



My intention with using the word "Zen," was to nudge at how the game was pointing at a simple kind of self-exploration and examination of what one desires (and in my case that all I really know about Alan Rickman is that he's a nice looking actor with a rich and sexy voice, and anything else I might crave in him is something I put there with my own perceptions,) with the "or not" as a reminder that this was, after all, a Honda website I was looking at and a game at that.

At the same time, it was still trivializing and I've used it even less correctly before as my circle of friends tends to use "I'm pretty zen about not getting the promotion" to mean "I have dealt with the inherent badness of not getting the promotion and have attained a sort of balance and mental peace with the idea that I'm not getting promoted."

But that's still misusing and trivializing and I will try not to use it badly again.

Sorry about that.

CC

2 comments:

James said...

CC, You're the cat's pajamas! I'm sorry to have been snippy. As you know frm my blog things today have been a bit rough today & I'm even less Zen than usual...

h sofia said...

A very gracious response to a gracious request!