About the ED

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#1 by lunaflina
2021-05-27 at 10:14
< report >It is something I never bothered about since soundtrack titles for this game don't simply display themselves, but instead only appears on website and voice asmr edition. Only now that I paid attention to it, the ED title made me wonder a lot about its meaning:

イサドへ (Towards Isado)

At first this just seems like a place name, but I found out that this is a reference to a short story of Miyazawa Kenji, who was a very inspirational novelist to certain modern writers.

That story is Yamanashi, which is about two crab brothers and their father, divided into two parts. One takes place in May and the other in December.

This story for middle schoolers also had various discussions about its core meaning, though the biggest mysteries are the author's usage of two words: Clammbon and Isado, which don't really have the definitive meaning, so it is all about speculations from different sources.

Since this is just about Isado, I can say my thoughts about why this is the best title for this game's ending.

In Yamanashi second part, two crab brothers argued about who could blow bigger bubbles, and the father stepped in to say "Hey now, it's late. Go to sleep, or you won't be taken to Isado tomorrow".

The later context also showed a blessing from above the surface (a Yamanashi), and the crab father also showed his appreciation for it. Given that this story part takes place in December, and how the story wants to tell that this is the month of harvest/blessing, the word Isado here can be interpreted as a coined word, perhaps from a certain old dialect for:
いい (good)
さー (towards)
所 (place)

Basically, I believe Kenji wanted to say this word in context means "To be guided to a better place". This is not a far fetched idea at all when he is known for his liberal use of words he made up to describe his world (like Ihatov for his ideal Utopia). Back to Soushisouai Lolita, of which main concept is about what you can guess (totally not clarifying spoilers), the ED title makes perfect sense.

At least, this is the initial way to represent how Isado was used here. But what if there is a second meaning behind the story?

We know that Isado in Yamanashi is a good place, but what is that place exactly?

In Yamanashi first half, the crab father also said to two crab brothers that the clammbon went to a scary place after being killed by a kingfisher. Beside that this is an obvious contrast to second half, it also shows an ideology of Kenji through this writing.

In his life, he was an avid believer of Nichiren Buddhism. His religious belief also helps him incorporate a lot of things to his stories, and Yamanashi is no exception. One aspect in basic teachings of Buddhism, karma, can be used to explain the two places. If December is the month of harvest, then May is the month of resentment. The clammbon went to a scary place during this time because, perhaps the clammbon committed a sin and had to pay for his actions. Through karma, it will be reincarnated to a scary world, and that is this world we are living in, just in another life. If it wants to set itself free from suffering, it has to find its way to liberation from karma, to find purity and seperate its soul from mortal body. That is the entrance to Sukhavati, or also known as, in Kenji's words, the Isado.

Now, have you noticed that this short story of Kenji never mentioned the crab mother?

Perhaps this is what the crab father wants to guide his children to. Showing them how scary and cruel this world might be, showing them the things they could appreciate in life, both are things they should experience in order to find happiness. The whereabouts of that happiness might not be within their reach, but just maybe one day...

In short, "Isado" is a location that does not exist in this world.

----

Mako, those were the times I thought I found my most valuable thing in life

But time goes on, all that is left but dreams and memories

What am I trying to accomplish in the end? Who else do I try to prove?

...Is it time to let it go and move on?
#2 by phoenixleo34
2021-09-13 at 13:46
< report >I recently notice Kenji's influence to a lot of VNs (or to contemporary Japanese literature in general). Kenji's popularity appeared to grow significantly since the 1980s - roughly the time anime and manga gained mainstream acceptance, and also in a time when the world shared many similarities with the turbulent 1920s and 30s Kenji lived in.

Really appreciate the review of u158511. Your comments bring me to this series and this is my second lolita series VN (I began with Yuuwaku Namaiki Lolita and then decided to read the series chronologically).

Please keep commenting on the series and other VNs.

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