Saturday, August 30, 2008
There's a Japanese aesthetic known as shibumi (the adjective is shibui) that has to do with understated elegance, things that are so perfect and refined that they hide behind commonplace appearances and do not need further voice. To quote the author Trevanian, "... (deep) understanding rather than knowledge. Eloquent silence". "...modesty without prudency... elegant simplicity, articulate brevity." After considering this for a moment I realized that, among other things, it describes the perfect bodyguard. A protector so skilled in the art that he (or she) hides behind the facade of the commonplace, garnering no attention, no second looks, no bravado. He passes by without notice yet all the while effortlessly maintaining his thought and attention toward one single purpose.