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THE WIND RISES

In my last visit to Japan, I was taken to visit the Yushukan (War Museum in Yasukini Shrine); there I had the opportunity to see and actually touch the A6M Zero Model; I was deeply impressed by the majesty and powerful energy this fighter aircraft radiates.

At that moment I knew nothing about the theme and plot of Hayao Miyazaki’s last film; when I eventually saw it in Hong Kong (several times by now), I was enthralled by the beauty of ‘The Wind Rises’ (Kaze Tachinu), and I was very happy with the synchronicity that had put me in physical contact with the A6M Zero, a work of art of aeronautical engineering with a tragic history.



Certainly, ‘The Wind Rises’ is an homage to Jiro Horikoshi (Jun/22, 1903 in Fujoka), the designer and creator of the Zero Model, but Miyazaki orchestrates themes about life, love and death, war and peace, composing a wonderful symphony of the experience of being alive. But most of all, this film is a hymn to the human capacity of imagination and creativity.

I have read dozens of comments and critics about the movie in different languages, most of them miss out the main point of Miyazaki’s achievement; many of them are only irritating bundles of prejudices about politics and war. It should not surprise us; when an artist challenges the conventional morality, all mean spirits want to do is display their own moral righteousness. This happens even with some critics of Shakespeare’s.

First of all, who is the main protagonist of this movie? Everybody would answer the obvious: Jiro. But the title gives a clear signal: it is the Air. This is the element of objective thinking, the fuel of intelligence and imagination, the capacity of the mind to build up ideas and concepts. Without air, fire, vision and will are in danger of extinction. So, Jiro is the hero that allows Miyazaki to express his intuition about this element in human terms. And intuitions are never wrong; Jiro Horikoshi had the Sun in the last degree of Gemini (time of birth unknown), with Mercury ruling Gemini, plus Pluto also in this mutable airy sign.
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Jiro Horikoshi
Jun/22, 1903
in Fujoka

There is no air in Miyazaki’s chart (Jan/5, 1941, Tokyo); his psychic dynamics is a constant clash between earth (Sun, Saturn, Jupiter, Uranus) and fire (Moon, Venus, Mars). But in his movies, air plays always a magic and poetic role. Think, for example, of ‘Sen to Chihiru no kamikakushi’ and the flights of Haku, the dragon, or the flights of Howl, in Howl’s Moving Castle. In Jungian psychology, air, corresponding to the thinking objective function, would represent Miyazaki’s inferior function; this means that the air energy emerges from the deep unconscious to open new dimensions in his psyche. Most geniuses depend on this function (air, earth, fire of water) for their creativity.
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Miyazaki Hayao
Jan/5, 1941
Tokyo

The title of the movie, ‘The Wind Rises’, comes from a short novel of Tatsuo Hori that had inspired Miyazaki a manga. Tatsuo Hori (Dec/28, 1904, Nagano), the Japanese writer who took the words, from one of the most famous French poems by Paul Valery (Oct/30, 1871, Sete, France, at 7pm), to name his novel. ‘The wind rises, we must try to live…’ The name of this poem is ‘The Graveyard by the Sea’; it is a beautiful metaphysical meditation about Death that ends up with an encouragement to accept life as it is and live it. Valery was a Scorpio with the Moon in Gemini, a combination of feeling and water, obsession with Death and fascination with the mystery of Life.
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Tatsuo Hori
Dec/28, 1904
Nagano

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Paul Valery
Oct/30, 1871
Sete, France
at 7pm

It may sound complicated but the synchronicity is astonishing. To make it simple: Air, the element of logic, imagination and intelligence, is not active in Miyazaki’s chart, which means that it remains unconscious. So, when Miyazaki is creating something (manga, movie), his psyche liberates the Air in a poetical form. To create his hero, he chose (unconsciously by synchronicity) a historical person who was an airy sign (Geminini Hirokoshi) to be his vehicle. A contemporary of Jiro Hirokoshi, the writer Tatsuo Hori was a Capricorn like Miyazaki. When Hori was using the poem of Valery for the title of his novel, he unconsciously connected Valery (Moon in Gemini) with Hirokoshi. Airy Gemini is so present in the creation of this movie that even, the animator Hideaki Anno, the voice of Jiro, is also a Gemini.

Saturn, Mercury and Uranus, are very active in the charts of all these artists and creators. Saturn, in the melancholic tone of the story, the hard facts of life, war, politics, difficulties, illness, tuberculosis, losses, death, frustration and hard work. Mercury, in the skills and quick intelligence of Jiro, Miyazaki, Hori, Anno; manga has always a mercurial quality. Uranus is present in the innovative discoveries, the high technology both in the past as well as in the creation of the movie. The archetype of Uranus is also expressed in the radical and unpredictable events that transform technology and history. The Kanto Earthquake and the War are catastrophes that transformed Japan.

But there is a deeper archetype underlying the story of ‘Kaze tachinu) and the A6M Zero Model; Jiro Hirokoshi and his colleagues, Count Caproni, the dream hero of Jiro, the writer Tatsuo Hori, all had Pluto in Gemini. The sign in which Pluto is expresses the obsession of a whole generation. These were men obsessed with the idea of flying; they were men who used their imagination and scientific knowledge (Gemini) to engineer a transformation in aeronautics.

One of the last images of the ‘Kaze Tachinu’, a sort of cemetery of the war aircrafts expresses all the waste of energy, creativity and human life the WWII provoked. This is Pluto in Gemini. And then I understood; the vertigo I had at the Yushukan was because the Zero Model is Pluto in Gemini, a combination of genius and terror.

At the end of his career, Hayao Miyazaki gives us this message: Life can be full of pain and horror, but what remains after all is the experience of love, the capacity of discovery, the capacity of imagining infinite new possibilities. The wind rises, we must to try to live.(the end)

In Japanese

by xavier_astro | 2014-02-01 00:00 | 映画  

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