As a beginning of an essay, I wish to briefly introduce my experience during the military service. From 2011 to 2013, I was involved in the Korean army, which is mandatory since division of territory of the Korea Peninsula. Frankly, I was afraid because I thought I didn’t have enough physical strength for hard trainings. I was also afraid for losing my confidence rather than losing my relationships through the military service. The worries about falling behind in society which I’m involved were really fearful to me.
However, when I’d faced up the reality of military, the physical requirement wasn’t hard as I expected. My physical strength wasn’t the best one but not the worst one. After the point of realization, I’ve revived my confidence and got interesting in everything of my service. As I getting try harder to be a ‘good soldier’, there were more praise for me and my influencing power grew getting larger. Eventually I got lots of commendation from Chief Commander, and even I nominated to the special combatant unit. Now I confess the commendation was really addictive.
I struggled for recognition. The reason that I demonstrated my experience is crucial in this essay. Perhaps everyone has this kind of experience. Each of us has distinction that gains more widespread appreciation of our value. However, recognition is like a Janus of Roman mythology. Sometimes it can produce a good effect like my military experience, but sometimes it can exert baneful influence upon human history. Because basically the recognition is the competition with other people, on occasion it also can be achieved by bloodshed.
Of that reason, even if the recognition is leading our performance, it should be prevented to supply on a large scale as countries or civilization, because side effects of large countries are much more extensive than individuals. Therefore, in a view of whole, as scale of nations, severe competition to get recognition should be avoided, and pursue other’s deference as ours. My first expression of two books ‘The end of history and the last man’ from F. Fukuyama and ‘The clash of civilization’ from S. Huntington was arrogant.
I’m afraid to say they are arrogant because I know they’re great scholars in this time, but I can’t agree on both of them. Huntington predicts the most dangerous conflict after the cold war will come from the civil discord. The civilization is mainly Western, Islam and Asians of Confucian. Even though his main concerning is avoiding the confliction between civilization, but I couldn’t far away the idea that his view of civilization is based on Western. He is passing over the major conflicts among the civilization are mainly from the result of over Westernalization.
Some principles in Islam countries became a terrorist because Western forced to change them. They fear their social order based on Islam might be broken. Huntington presupposes the Western culture is superior to another. Because he afraid of collapse of Western, he proposes his own solutions. However the solutions are sounds like lock out the civilization to other civilization and pursuit inner strength which is preparation for the crash. In this aspect, I can say Huntington denies inner variety and dynamist of Islam, Confucian and others and active spontaneous inter change among civilization of last centuries.
Furthermore, he prescribes Islam and Confucianism in East Asia as an obstacle for the democracy. And even he just ignores the nations which are independent from major civilization and he over looks lots of the conflicts beyond it. That reminds me Christianity. I don’t want to blame the religion itself but mention some important features of Christianity. Even though ‘love your neighbor’ is one of the main mottos of Christianity, fundamentally, Christainism excludes the varieties. They don’t accept any other religions. They just feel compassion to others about being difference and never accept other view.
There are lots of virtues in Christianity, but they can’t deny exclusive expansionism is one of main principles of Christianity. On that ground, if the Islam and Confucianism is obstacle for the democracy, Western those taking cultural background of Christianity especially America is rather stumbling block to achieve coexistence of civilization. On the other hand, first time when I read a preface of Fukuyama’s master piece, ‘The end of history’, I thought Fukuoka is much more arrogant than Huntington. He even justifies the Westernization.
I must say, as a human being no matter how his support idea was great, I didn’t want to admit his idea, because the end of history means a full stop for political development beyond democracy. In this aspect, I really wanted to refute his idea of democracy although I approve democracy is the best option for now. Of that reason I prepared the argument against democracy to defeat his idea. I wanted to criticize his theme as taking help of psychology. Even though democracy looks perfect, it’s limited in rational idea, which means it can’t cover the unconsciousness of human being.
I mean, human beings are refrained their unconsciousness in order to be a good member of society. For example, it’s not easy to say but Freud says every human being has a desire for the incest. But the incest is strongly banned in almost all society, so desire for incest goes to unconsciousness. Actually, unconsciousness influence a lot to daily life. For now, unconsciousness is only important in psychology and taboo in society, but in some reason if people give more weight on unconsciousness, human desire rather than rational, reasonable area, democracy will not suit for the new paradigm.
That was my preparation to defeat Fukuyama’s theme of end of history. However, surprisingly, he develops his theme from the human desire called recognition. He argues democracy starts the efforts to ensure distinct of every people have, which is recognition. From that point my argument that ‘democracy is not the final destination because it can’t cover the innovation’ was defeated. He argues democracy was born to cover innovation, and also democracy is the innovation itself. So for me, I don’t have any option but accepting his idea.
As I stated experience of military service, I can’t deny I’m the man who chasing recognition and it’s stronger than others. However, even though I agree on democracy is perfect; he can’t avoid the critics’ that his idea is based on Western supremacy, as Huntington did. Nowadays civil inter changes are activist in human history. Whatever the fact is, both of writer’s view of civilization is confrontation rather than comprehension. Such thinking like ‘dividing’ goes against the trend of times. They are still live in the world of ‘The cold war’.
We should think why there were conflictions among the civilization. As I stated above, knowing the expansionism and dominatism of Western and especially American imperialism is the main factor of confliction. Yardstick of other civilization is set by American, so it is ridiculous to assume that yardstick is still standard in other countries. Furthermore, even though globalism is a tendency of the times, we should know all the people and countries can’t be the same. Accordingly, respecting variety is essential in the time. As to conclusion, I want to give interesting story to two mentioned savants.
The Aztec people had previously made a fermented beverage from the agave plan, which they called Octli. When the Spanish conquistadors ran out of their own brandy they began to distill this agave drink to produce North America’s first indigenous distilled spirit. We call this spirit as Tequila. I don’t want to make argue with Spanish conquest, but Tequila. As we can see in Tequila nobody knows what can be produced after combination. Islamic democracy or Confucian democracy could be better than original. It’s time for waiting distillation, without hesitation.