EoE Final scene explained and connected to EoTV G.W.F Hegel.

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EoE Final scene explained and connected to EoTV G.W.F Hegel.

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Postby zlink64 » Fri Jun 05, 2015 6:50 pm

Intro:
I am not interested in discussing my interpretation of the meaning of the final scene; by meaning I mean things like moral, themes, symbolism, or parts of character arcs. I am very satisfied in general with the conclusions that the EVA community has reached for me on that front. What I will be talking about specifically is exactly how and why Shinji choked Asuka, in those exact moments and how EoE Final scene is directly related to EoTV.

As of now it seems to me that most people accept thematic/symbolic(correct/strong) interpretations of the scene combined with the Drama card and/or a variation of Shinji is crazy/traumatized/etc because of instrumentality and/or pre-instrumentality. But there is a disconnect. Even if Shinji being Crazy/Traumatized is true, it does not adequately explain his actions. It takes too much for granted. For example, God created man because she was crazy. I can say God did this because she is crazy but I wouldn't be truly explaining why she did it. The drama card on the other hand does explain what Shinji is doing and why, but it is extremely vague and as result forces us again to fill in the gaps with a variation of Shinji is crazy/traumatized/disturbed.

So with that being said I'm going to try to explain exactly what is going on through Shinji's head by examining and interpreting the final scene and then further strengthen my interpretation of the final scene by comparing it to EoTV ep 26 while I analyze Eotv EP 26. I will make reference to Hegel G.F's Master/Slave essay. Hegel is paramount to this in the same way Freud is paramount in understanding psychology in Evangelion; you understand Hegel, then you will understand the Final scene entirely as far as what is literally going on between Shinji and Asuka.

Note: I'm like 99 percent sure I'm right about Hegel's influence on Evangelion's endings. Only 99 because unless Anno outright says "I used Hegel" I could be wrong. This is a long post but I promise it will be mildly convincing, or at the very least persuasive or at the very very least interesting, if you get to the end and think about it. Feel free to tell me I don't make sense or making a mistake or sound 100 percent wrong. I want criticism for the sake of this interpretation's validity and my own sanity; I need to know. Just read what I am saying first.

Stuff I reference: Hegel's Master/Slave essay, EoE Final scene , drama card and ending of EoTV 26 (11:20-14:17) . I'll put links for Hegel's stuff here but you don't need to read it immediately. Since I don't expect anyone to actually read Hegel unless they are forced to, lmao, here is the sparks notes: http://www.sparknotes.com/philosophy/hegel/section2.rhtml If you do wanna read the essay directly look for a pdf of "The Phenomenology of Spirit" online and go to the Master&Slave chapter/paragraphs 178-196. Do not skim read this. It is abstract and arduous reading but very rewarding once you begin to really grasp it and how it relates to EVA. Now I'll start:

EOE and Hegel:
Shinji renounced the world where all hearts had melted into one and accepted each other unconditionally. His desire… to live with ‘others’ — other hearts that would sometimes reject him, even deny him. That is why the first thing he did after coming to his senses was to place his hands around Asuka’s neck. To feel the existence of an ‘other’. To confirm (make sure of) rejection and denail -drama card

Analysis: The drama card implies that Shinji fundamentally needs another person to confirm his existence because if he were alone it would be impossible for him to confirm the existence of rejection and therefore his identity/reality;instrumentality. So the implication here is that two people are required to know of and confirm oneself. This will all relate to Hegel.


If you read Hegel's Master-slave section of his book,it's not about slavery, it explains what happens when two consciousness meet for the first time. The description Hegel gives of this event is almost exactly the same as the Final scene/drama card description, minus Rei. Hegel says that in the beginning a consciousness isn't self aware and is in a state similar to what Evangelion calls "instrumentality". When a consciousness becomes aware and meets another consciousness the two consciousness have to fight to the death to prove their existence by negating the other but the winner has to stop before killing the loser otherwise they loss their proof. The proof being the other consciousness recognition. So the 2 consciousness' very much need each other. *It has to be to the death because death only has meaning to consciousness; more on this in EoTv ep 26 section.

Reading it is a bit weird because in real life its hard to imagine 2 consciousness/people needing to fight to the death to prove their existence and even harder to imagine 2 consciousness that aren't really self aware before the fight but in Evangelion, because of all the fictional stuff that has happened to Asuka and Shinji, they made it all work. So basically what I'm saying is that Anno stole/was inspired by the scene Hegel describes in his essay and decided to incorporate it into his ending of Evangelion.

Note: At this point I have only just notice that the physical actions of the Final Scene happen to match Hegel's work, albeit perfectly, and that the drama card and Hegel also happen match up. I will use Eotv to further prove that this is more than just a similarity and to in fact try and prove that the Final Scene is Anno's animated and literal interpretation of Hegel's ideas on self-consciousness.

The reasons I think this Heglian interpretation of the Final scene is good/strong, aside from what I wrote above and what I will mention below in the EoTV section, is because:

1) It does not contradict the drama card or the actual scene; in fact it matches it perfectly. So if you believe the drama card, this further supports that belief. In addition Hegel gives the drama card/scene deeper meaning and explanation because then the drama card/Final Scene isn't only about Shinji checking to see if rejection exist but also about Shinji and Asuka recognizing that they need each other in a very fundamental way.

2) If you are in the boat that interpret the final scene as having something to do with Asuka and Shinji learning to accept each other then a Hegelian interpretation of the scene further supports your interpretation because it does not contradict it and Hegel's entire idea of self-consciousness coming into existence (like coming out of instrumentality) is dependent on two consciousness(people) recognizing each other ,through negation (rejection), and then accepting each other because they need each other to be true self-consciousness(fully realized people). So Hegel's ideas matches literally with the scene and thematically with Shinji and Asuka's character arc and the themes/ideas that are commonly associated with interpretations involving Shinji and Asuka accepting each other to any degree and/or accepting each other in combination with rejection(disgust).

3)Title: One final I need you. The title obviously can be referring to multiple things at the same time but it also fits nicely with Hegel since he is all about self-consciousness recognizing and needing another self-consciousness to have any meaningful existence or to even exist in the first place.

4) It further connects EoE to EoTV. I'll explain this further but basically I think that the end of episode 26,specifically ,11:20-14:17 and Final scene are communicating the same exact thing to the viewer. Like EoE is a physical and literal adaptation of Hegel's idea on self-consciousness while EoTV run/reads almost like a sparks notes version of Hegel's idea on self-consciousness. So if you think both endings are in agreement then this is just one more example of how they are similar/same event. Note: Not saying they are exactly the same event only that they are directly related. It could or could not be the same exact event.

Instrumentality:
I'm gonna talk a bit about Instrumentality and the Eotv 26 as a whole first. Sorry if anything I say sounds off topic or redundant or obvious to you EVA experts but I wanna be clear and it is relevant. Once' I'm done I'll go on to analyze episodes 26 art/dialogue to show how it relates to Hegel/EOE specifically. So, anyway:

Instrumentality is similar to the Buddist idea of oneness. The idea of leaving your identity behind and becoming one with everything; in instrumentality's case dropping your AT field and becoming one with everyone. Here I would allow myself some freedom of speculation in regard to Hegel's ideas and Buddism and Instrumentality and Evangelion since this is a show and not a strict philosophy book or some psychology textbook or religious text and as a viewer there are certain times I'm allowed to randomly speculate to a certain degree; this being one of them:

What Hegel describes as an unaware consciousness sounds a lot like Buddism/instrumentality's idea of oneness. By that I mean if we were to imagine the experience of Hegel's state of consciousness prior to it becoming true self-consciousness, a state of raw and unaware consciousness, and compare it to what we would imagine the Buddist/Instrumentality's idea of losing identity/ATfields and becoming one with everything/everyone, we would essentially imagine the two experiences as the same thing. In other words there is no experiential difference between being 1 single unaware consciousness or 1 super unaware consciousness made up of conglomerate of unaware consciousness(Basically what instrumentality is) as far as we can tell.

Now Hegel is not a Buddist, in fact further reading of his work beyond the Master/Slave essay seems to imply to me that he would think a return to nothing/oneness is bad or at least not something he himself would want or promote. That being said I think Shinji, based off his rejection of instrumentality, would agree with Hegel. Now the question is why would Shinji agree. Well if we look at Hegel's ideas and then ask ourselves what is more alone then being a single unaware consciousness then we would realize that nothing is. In fact it would be the purist form of loneliness that could exist; anything less would basically equate to being non-existence and on a practical level it is the same as non-existence. So the implication I'm making is that instrumentality is also a very lonely experience since it is practically the same experience as existing as 1 lonely consciousness despite being many consciousness'. It's as close to non-existence as we could get. There's is a strong connection/similarity between the experience of non-existence and pure aloneness which is unaware consciousness.

So it can be true that instrumentality brings everyone together to a state of oneness but the claim that it fills the holes in people hearts by complementing each other is matter of perspective. By that I mean it is a philosophical/metaphysical opinion/view or attitude. The experience/feeling of a being in instrumentally could just as easily be interpreted/experienced by an individual in instrumentality as turning people into one giant hole instead of filling the holes in people's heart. So basically what I'm trying to say is that Shinji realized what I imagine what Hegel would think about something like instrumentality. That the experience of instrumentality practically amounts to the same experience of being alone to the highest degree of the meaning of alone and/or non-existence. The very same alone that Shinji has been trying to avoid in the first place. Instrumentality is a super ironic option for Shinji from this point of view and not at all what he wants.

EoTV:
Now most of us would agree that episode 26 is Shinji in instrumentality at least up until the congratulations scene. And because of budget problems they went for the minimalist approach with the episode. But aside from the budget, that art could also be depicting Shinji's losing his identity due to instrumentality. So, as the episode goes and the more simpler the art becomes then the closer we are to Shinji becoming one to with everyone/complete instrumentality.The way the art is losing properties that identify what it is, is how Shinji is losing the things that give him individuality; his identity is losing its At Field like a drawing losing it's outline. I am going to accept that interpretation. If you thinks it's wrong, that is okay. I only need you to agree in general that Shinji is leaving insturmentality around/near the time I describe below. With that being said lets look at the pics/frames because I would like pin point where exactly the Hegel's Master/slave exchange begins and appears in ep 26 and how I think that relates to EoE.

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The image in the middle, the whiteness is Shinji in full instrumentality/fully complemented; oneness/nothingness. Everything before it is Shinji in the process of instrumentality and being "complemented". The image after is the beginning of Shinji exiting instrumentality. We know this because Shinji has a "feeling" experience and has regained his "outline" after the few short pure white frames. He should absolutely not have an outline if he is truly "complemented". The dialogue during and after this image is Shinji making sense of the real world after returning and beginning Hegel's Master/Slave dynamic. This moment of exiting instrumentality is analogous to the scene from EOE when Shinji says good bye to his mother and returns to real world; note the similarity in the art. The mechanism by which he does this is through his consciousness' sheer will and no special power. Shinji is not like Neo from the matrix or a dream warrior from Nightmare on Elm Street:3 or any person with a special ability to escape dream like worlds. We know its will alone because the show outright says so. The common confusion people have in understanding this is in the definition of this "will". I will go into what "will" is after I analyze the dialogue, since, it is a bit off topic but I'll say right now that Anno's use of the word is very close to becoming like philosophical jargon. Lol it's NGE jargon.

Shinji: What is this? A world of nothing. A world with nobody in it.
Other Shinji voce: This is a world perfect freedom.
Shinji: Freedom?
Other Shinji voice: Perfect Freedom, a world in which you have no restriction.
Shinji: Is this really Freedom?
Other Shinji voice: Yes. This is what it is.
Rei: However this world has nothing in it.
Shinji: Unless I do something.
Misato: Right, unless you do or think of something.
Shinji: But I don't know what to do or think of.
Rei: He is uncertain.
Asuka: He has no self image to orient himself.

Analysis: This is why Shinji's consciousness in not true self-awareness yet despite already being in the process of leaving instrumentality. His consciousness is alone and not properly aware of it's surroundings. He is exactly like the non aware consciousness that Hegel talks about in his essay. The few lines before and after this are also talking about the relationship between consciousness and objects separate from itself. Will expand on this below. Note: "Perfect freedom" is an abstract concept. Most likely/basically it just means that consciousness is not being limited by it's general awareness and its awareness of the things around it.

Hikari: There's nothing solid here.
Misato: It is a world where there is no obstacles. No anything.
Ryouji: This is a world where you can do anything you wish.
Misato: And Yet, you are still afraid aren't you.
Fuyutsuki: Don't you know what it is that you want to do?
Shinji: What should I do?

Gendou: Let me give you a restriction.
Asuka: There, Now you have a top and a bottom.

Analysis: Shinji is being given objects; object being things that are separate from Shinji. But for Hegel this is not enough and Shinji is about to realize it too. Hegel believed that his peers/predecessors had a misconception about self-consciousness, that self-consciousness was self-evident because it was separate and different than the objects(things) around it; that it's existence could be deduced. Hegel on the other hand believes that self-conscious was a thing that was actually generated through it's interactions with other things and not simply something that exists self-evidently. But objects alone are not enough for this generating process; 'the other' is needed. So for example I think therefore I am according to Hegel does not prove self-awareness. If that is hard to understand think of it like this. Shinji is currently literally experiencing the phenomenon of I think therefore I am and is still unable to identify himself as himself.

Rei: But you have lost one degree of freedom.
Misato: You may no longer fly. You must stand upon the earth.
Ryouji: But Now you feel easier don't you.
Makoto: Because you have less to trouble your mind.

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Shigeru: And now you can walk.
Maya: This is happening because you will it to be.
Shinji: Is this my will?

Analysis: Given what we've understood so far it seems very likely that the literal meaning of theses lines is that it is the will of Shinji's consciousness to perceive the objects around him and not to literally create the objects in the way one would normally assume by the meaning of the word will; he is not god like. This seems abstract but it is paramount to understand that raw consciousness (not self-consciousness; Shinji is not there yet) has to will itself on very basic level before it can proceed to do anything; things like feeling, recognizing, understanding, etc. This creation is actually and literally really the consciousness' "will" to perceive. This moment is analogous with Shinji walking around on the beach/general area alone during the final scene, the beach and the line are similar; This is a kind of Limbo, more explanation on this below. It is paramount to "get this" to deeper understand why Shinji is so extremely confused/unsure about actual reality in the EOE final scene. Hopefully when I explain "will" later on what I am trying to say will make more sense.

Ritsuko: This world where the floor is the only thing around yourself.
Touji: But now, you can move around anywhere you wish with in it.
Kensuke: You could even turn the world upside down if you wanted to.
Hikari: And your perspective within the world is constantly changing.
Ryouji: It changes with the passage of time.
Fuyutsuki: You can change yourself as well.
Gendou: Because The things that form your shape is your mind and it's interaction with the world that surround you.
Ritsuko: you can do anything here because this is your world..
Misato: This is the shape of your reality.
The word Reality is repeated and The sound of effect of "reality" is altered here and sounds weird/scary.

Analysis: The scary sound effect signifies the very scary realization that Shinji is about to have about what it means to be a single consciousness; a single consciousness is incapable of proving it's self-awareness/reality even if it has objects that let it know it exist as a separate thing from everything else.
Shinji is no longer fully unaware(instrumentality/complemented) because of his consciousness' "will to perceive" but he can not be sure of his experience; he is experiencing a Limbo, between reality and instrumentality, like phenomenon. This limbo like feeling is what Shinji feels while he explores the beach before Asuka's arrival in the final scene. So all this "my world" stuff is bad in relation to consciousness.

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Shinji: What is this? A empty space? An empty world? A world where nothing exist but myself. But with only myself I have nothing to interact with. It as if I'm here but not here at all. It as if I'm slowly fading out of existence.

Analysis: This is the realization I mentioned. Shinji's is repeating exactly what Hegel is saying about self-consciousness while he lays on the white floor. And this realization is what Shinji is thinking/experiencing while he lays on the beach. And this frame is analogous to the imagery of Shinji laying on the beach; the shadow let us now he is against the floor. Also notice how white the beach is, it is extremely similar to the white space in EoTV. Here is a Hegel quote for you to think of and compare with the dialogue:

Hegel: "Self-consciousness exist in and for itself when, and by the fact that, it so exists for another; that is, it exists only in being acknowledged."


Misato: Because only you are here.
Shinji: Only myself?

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Misato: Without others to interact with you cannot truly recognize your own image.
Shinji: My own image?
Misato: That's right. In the act of observing others you may find and recognize yourself.
Asuka: Yourself imagine is restrained by having to observe the barriers between yourself and others.
Rei: And yet you you cannot see yourself without the presence of others.


Analysis: This is exactly what Hegel is saying. This dialogue here and right after is basically the sparksnote version of Hegel. The various double imagery is analogous with Asuka and Shinji laying next to each other on the beach. Both these moments from the movie and EoTV are trying to convey the importance of 2 consciousness in this process. And in addition notice the symmetry in the imagery from both endings. For Hegel you are only self aware through the recognition of another. So your self-awareness, according to Hegel, is based off your perception of the others perception of you; the self-awareness/Master&Slave process is a reflective/mirror like process where you see yourself in the other.
Again notice how white the beach looks. It could almost be a part of EP 26. By comparing the white beach imagery with Ep.26's dialogue and its use of white space we can see that the beach represent the void of existence experienced by 2 non aware consciousness(raw consciousness). The beach implies through the art that Asuka and Shinji are literally 2 consciousness' that are floating around in the void of existence(the world/everything) and have yet to truly identify themselves as themselves/become self-aware. The white space of EoTV and the white beach of EOE represent the same thing and are trying to convey the same ideas/feelings to the audience.

Image Image Image

Shinji: Because there are others I can perceive myself as an individual. If I am alone The I will be same as with out others. For if this world is only of me then there will be no difference between me and nothing.
Misato: By recognizing the differences between yourself and
others, you establish your identity as your self.


Analysis: Like I said earlier this is exactly Hegel is saying. So lets exam the imagery that runs during this dialogue. We have Shinji's face and it's distressed. It is strange because so far the dialogue seems like it's going in a "positive" direction; in relation to self-consciousness he is getting closer. But Shinji is making another terrifying realization that is not being explicitly stated through the Dialogue but is being expressed by his facial expression. The realization that all of this requires that he and the other consciousness negate/reject each other completely(recognize the differences) and fight to death. The fear of death being the only thing that can possibly give this process any meaning because it validates the consciousness as being more than just an object that is simply existing. So in other words self-awareness requires pain/fear/struggle. Shinji must feel this fear and struggle in order to know he is self-consciousness. Any hope of experiencing anything else, for example love, in the future is completely dependent on this moment since it gives rise to true self-consciousness. This moment is analogous to the moment when Shinji decides to get up and strangle Asuka. Here is quote for you to compare with art and dialogue:

Hegel: "They must engage in this struggle, for they must raise their certainty of being for themselves to truth, both in the case of the other and in their own case. And it is only through stalking one's life that freedom is won; only thus is it proved that for self-consciousness, its essential being is not [just] being, not the immediate form in which it appears, not its submergence in the expanse of life, but rather that there is nothing present in it which could not be regarded as a vanishing moment, that it is only pure being-for-self."


Image Image


Rei: The very first other person is your mother.
Asuka: Your mother is a different individual.


Analysis: This is a practical expression of Hegels abstract Master&Slave idea/image. The first other is the mother because when a baby is born their mother is first other consciousness they come in contact with. In the EOE/Final scene the first consciousness Shinji sees is Asuka and her response to him is Yuri's signature hand caress. Eotv mentions the mother while EOE gives Asuka a motherly Motif. Also there is much symbolism through EoE that connects Instrumentality with birth. When Shinji "awakens" in the LCL sea it is very analogous to birth. Shinji can be reasonably interpreted to have experienced a birth/rebirth after instrumentality. Shinji on the beach is like a newborn baby in terms of consciousness. And Asuka is being used symbolicly as a stand in for Shinji's mother since she is the catalyst/"the first other" in all this.

Also notice that Asuka's actions are being directly compared to motherly love in EOE. This is important because it brings Shinji's character arch full circle and shows us that Anno believes that the ideas of self-consciousness/self-identity and love are closely related if not the same thing. Towards the end of EoTv's ending Shinji's character flaw(his insecurity and fear of people) is directly explained to the viewer. They say that Shinji's character flaw came to be because he is not used to being liked and never learned to deal with what others feel about him. Like Asuka this kind of character flaw most likely came to be because Shinji never received unconditional and reassuring love from his mother. Since Shinji didn't get this reassurance early in his childhood development he develop his insecurities/character flaws. By comparing Asuka's affection with motherly love Anno is showing the viewer that Shinji is finally getting "the reassurance" that he has been missing his entire life from Asuka. This relates to Hegel because the entire point of the master/slave dynamic is for consciousness to reassure their identity through another individual; this is why they need the "other". The act of reassuring your identity and receiving "reassuring love" as a child/in life are being compared and intertwined by Anno. F.W.I: Not saying Asuka is his mother, their relationship is without a doubt sexual in nature, only saying that Asuka's love is filling a hole for Shinji that was left behind by Yui's death. Very Freudian lol. Asuka and Yui's love are not exactly the same but share very strong similarities for Shinji. Note: It is interesting that Asuka and Rei got these lines in EoTV.

Important: This is the point where you can make your own opinion on the meaning of this/ My opinion/Analysis: Asuka's hand caress moment and Disgust is extremely interesting because in way we are getting Anno's interpretation of Hegel's Master & Slave conflict. Hegel ends the conflict with the Master allowing the Slave to live and he goes on to describe the relationship between the two and explains that it is the slave that will ultimately benefit because he achieves true self-consciousness while the master never becomes true self-consciousness/fully realized, read Hegel yourself for more details; there is hope here for the master, I will get to it. So now we should think about what it means for Shinji to be the Master and Asuka the Slave since that kind of relationship is only fulfilling to a mother and baby; mother/slave becomes true-self-aware/fully realized through the baby/master. If we look closer at what is going on between Shinji and Asuka in the final scene we will realize Shinji is not the only master. Shinji and Asuka take turns. Shinji rejects Asuka(strangle) and then Asuka accepts/submits to him(caress), then Asuka rejects Shinji(Disgust) and presumably Shinji will accept/submits to Asuka afterward. Point being that there is an exchange going on between them. Hegel never explicitly states how the master can achieve true consciousness like the slave and only describes the relationship from one angle in his essay. Hegel just leaves the reader to sort out the implications of what he is writing themselves. One possible implication being that the master and slave can only both achieve true self-awareness at the same time through mutual respect and recognition. They do this by taking turns and switching roles the way we see Asuka and Shinji do in the Final scene. So the most optimal form of the Master-slave relationship is an extremely reciprocal relationship. And eventually in this kind of relationship loving yourself literally means loving the other because you love yourself through them the same exact way you achieve true self-consciousness through the other. And most people would say that a reciprocal relationship made up of two fully realized individuals(2 True self-conciousness') is a relationship made up of true love. The final scene is about true love. AsukaXShinji shipper for life(This is a Joke...I though it was obvious). It is beautiful because it is true love being reciprocated between two equal and fully realized self-consciousness unlike the one sided true love that a mother/slave/true self-awareness has for her baby/master/false self-awareness.

Shinji: Right. I am I and she is she. But are you really sure that the perception of other forms my true self.
Misato: It's true Shinji Ikari.
Asuka: Has it taken you this long to realize that. What an idiot.


Anaylsis: Shinji is literally questioning Hegel's ideas before accepting them. I take Misato's response as proof that Anno/Shinji agrees with Hegel's view on self-consciousness. Asuka's line is likely directed at Anno himself, Shinji and the audience. The rest of ep 26 has a few more lines related to Hegel but it is just repetition of what I've explained already and I do not think it connects directly to the final scene so I am satisfied with stopping here. I do not think EoTV and the final scene are necessarily the same exact event but it could be. I personally don't think it matters since EoE is basically is a remake anyways but they are, in my opinion, without a doubt depicting the same exact ideas and themes in relation to consciousness and Hegel and each other(Final scene and EP 26 11:20-14:17) and love(true love?).

Note: The final scene is about "love/acceptance/self-acceptance" but I would not say "love" is the moral of the story/NGE. If you take a step and look at the show as a whole ...I would say it's more like "Hope" is the moral of NGE and all of this is Anno's justification for that Hope. At any rate this is off topic and just my opinion.

Will:
The show/movie makes it very clear that will is what makes everything I've written about so far even possible so I don't need to prove/define it. But it does directly relate to the master/slave conflict and Anno's use of the concept can be very easily misunderstood so since it is appropriate to mention it in this post I will. This is my understanding of what Anno means by "will", specifically, the will to return from instrumentality:

Will: Think of the word "will" as "primordial will". The will of raw being/consciousness is deep rooted. It is deeper than any psychological drive or surface level want or need. It is on the same level as instinct, if not, then it is even deeper. This is why people in instrumentality still have this will despite being reduce to physical nothingness and near non-existence(unaware consciousness)/full non-existence. This will is what drive consciousness to go into a state of self-consciousness, literally. So when Shinji "wills" himself from instrumentality it means that at his deepest core the being that is known as Shinji demands to exist, in other words this will is there even before Shinji is aware that he is Shinji. And based off the final scene, EoTV, and Hegel not just exist but exist in relation to others. Misato foreshadows this idea of "primordial will" when she tells Shinji that those with the will to survive deserve to live after Kaworu's death. The reason it sounds so cold is because it sounds like she is talking about deserving to "suicide/die" but the line is not strictly about suicide, it's about "The primordial will to live"; deserving to live is a separate concept than deserving to suicide/die. Now imagine if someone asked you why a rock doesn't deserve to live. The only way to answer that without being fallacist is to say that the rock literally lacks the will to live. So this "primordial will" is like a force, phenomenon, a thing consciousness just does even before it is self-awareness.

Example: If Kaworu were to switch spots with Shinji he would not have returned from instrumentality because as Misato noticed he does not have the will.
"But I can also die here. Life and death are of equal value to me. Dying of your own will. That is the one and only absolute freedom there is. " -Kawaru
Absolute freedom=non-existence=instrumentality
When Kaworu says "Dying of your own will" he does not mean only to choose to die, he means a literal lack or lost of primordial will. Death and Life are equal because he lacks the fear of death that is intertwined with "will". Kawaru recognized our "will" and basically decided we deserved to live and not him so he let Shinji kill him. When he says humans live for the future that is in reference to our will to exist.

Note/Speculation: Kaworu is an Angel and this is most likely why he has no "will". Hypothetically, all humans should have the "will" that Shinji has. It makes humans human.

My Youtube Profile: MurderousJohnny...Sudostef made a video out of this post. People are assuming it's his original work/ideas. It's cool that he made it and I don't mind but just FYI that is not me. Also if anyone else wants to make a video out of this feel free I guess.
Last edited by zlink64 on Mon Oct 09, 2017 7:27 am, edited 72 times in total.
hmmm

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Postby NemZ » Sat Jun 06, 2015 12:01 am

I would agree that this is quite likely exactly what Anno was going for (or at least that Hegel was a direct inspiration) though I don't think he was particularly successful in the endeavor however. In EoTV it's quite muddled with the fact that others clearly do exist in some form that is separate from himself the whole time, explaining the whole thing from posotions of knwoing authority and even acting on 'his world' directly without his will. In EoE it's just not explained with sufficient clarity to grasp the thoughts behind the actions without quite a lot of largely unsupported speculation and/or having previously seen the now redundant alternate ending, and on top of that we're being constantly distracted by insane imagery... for all it's crudeness the primitive nature of EoTV helps keep the focus squarely on the ideas being presented.

I Can't be any clearer than this sorry.


I think the whole thing could be quite a bit clearer (and shorter) actually, but I'm guessing you're currently neck-deep in academia so that sort of problem is to be expected. :tongue:
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Postby zlink64 » Sat Jun 06, 2015 4:45 am

lol, Nah I haven't been to school in like 2+ years but I could see why you think that. I personally can't imagine writing it differently without having a naggy feeling. It would just bother me. Also by clearer I'm meant the definition of will specifically but yeah.... the whole thing had rough draftish feel so sorry bout being disorganized, grammar, length, clarity, etc. Was just writing without really planning.

I remember Anno saying part of Rebuild goal was to be simpler. I don't know if that is still true but I think that could maybe be his response to what you are saying. Like if this was his intention, despite being a cool a ending, it really is too vague to expect people to get it. If I had to say that there was flaw it would be that the ending was unreasonable in its expectations of the audience because it was too vague/confusing like you say. If Hegel had a famous quote or unique scenario like Hedge hog's dilema or something like a Freudiam term maybe it would make easier for Anno but Hegel does not. All Hegel's got is 2 guys brawling lol.
Last edited by zlink64 on Thu Jul 09, 2015 3:54 am, edited 1 time in total.
hmmm

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Postby Haiku » Wed Jul 08, 2015 4:19 am

Thanks for the in-depth analysis. Just a quick note, could you please update your post to replace "Hegal", with "Hegel" ? It really distracts from the quality of your post.
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Postby zlink64 » Thu Jul 09, 2015 4:53 am

Done. Sorry!!! lol The shame. :facepalm:

Note: Also added a paragraph to the section talking about mothers and comparing Asuka hand caress with Yui's. Just mentioning in case you are interested. Just added stuff that I though made sense to put there but forgot to mention.
hmmm

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Postby cody727kirby » Wed Jul 15, 2015 4:49 pm

Awesome analysis man. Talk about a refreshing read. Thank you so much for writing this.

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Re: EoE Final scene explained and connected to EoTV G.W.F Hegel.

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Postby maarhoe » Wed Mar 02, 2016 8:34 am

This was really intresting. While reading this I realised I once already came in contact with Hegel in 'Kafka on the Shore' (coincidentally by a Japanese author), but didn't really pay it attention at the time. Here's the concerning passage. On a side note, I think the author has a really intresting way of referring to philosophers and composers and such. The only reference I really have for it would be a writer that's from my own country, a dude called Harry Mulisch. Where I feel that Mulisch just kind of puts two people in a room and have them start a dialogue about something, Murakami actually gives good and intresting reason to why someone would suddenly rant on about Hegel, narratively. Mulisch does have more stronger works in this aspect but the problem I describe is pretty prominent the work people call his Magnum Opus.

The context of this passage is that there's this guy, Hoshino, who gets convinced to sleep with a prostitute by Colonel Sanders (not making that one up). Said prostitue first goes on to quote some other philosopher but Hoshino apparently sees an unexpected use in it outside of the meaning. Now that I can kind of relate to the use of Hegel here, rereading this book will be intresting with possible meaning this passage might have for the story.

"I can't think of anything special, but could you quote some more of that
philosophy stuff? I don't know why, but it might keep me from coming so quick.
Otherwise I'll lose it pretty fast."
"Let's see.... This is pretty old, but how about some Hegel?"
"Whatever."
"I recommend Hegel. He's sort of out of date, but definitely an oldie but
goodie."
"Sounds good to me."
"At the same time that 'I' am the content of a relation, 'I' am also that
which does the relating."
"Hmm..."
"Hegel believed that a person is not merely conscious of self and object as
separate entities, but through the projection of the self via the mediation of the
object is volitionally able to gain a deeper understanding of the self. All of
which constitutes self-consciousness."
"I don't know what the heck you're talking about."
"Well, think of what I'm doing to you right now. For me I'm the self, and
you're the object. For you, of course, it's the exact opposite--you're the self to
you and I'm the object. And by exchanging self and object, we can project
ourselves onto the other and gain self-consciousness. Volitionally."
"I still don't get it, but it sure feels good."

Edit: The day after I wrote this reply, while watching the first movie of the rebuild series, it fucking started hailing. In Dutch, we call it hagel.

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Postby zlink64 » Wed Mar 02, 2016 10:37 am

Wow cool thanks for sharing. Will definitely give that book a read just to compare for fun. This kinda brings me some comfort because it's good to know that the prostitute/guy shares my opinion that the whole master slave thing is nice lol and the way they combine "volitionally" with Hegel is I think is a big part of Anno's point at the end; Shinji choosing to deal with people. I say it brings me comfort that because when I did this analysis I was kinda of worried I could be confusing Sartre with Hegel. Sartre is another philosopher who used Hegel's master-slave essay and put his own spin on it with a big empahsize on "volitionally". The difference between using Hegel or Sartre in this final scene I think is the difference between a happy or sad ending. When Hegel writes about master slaves he is like Meh" about it while implying it's a good thing where as Sartre is like "this sucks big balls I.E (famous phrase)Hell is other people".
The reason I had this worry was because there is a lot of Sartre's ideas floating around Eva and it seemed weird to me that Anno would just switch gears to Hegel at the very end. So, it's nice to know I'm not only person who has thought of the idea of volitionally and Hegel together.


I only choose Hegel because the scene and writing just seemed to match Hegel much more closely (like it sounds like Hegel) Example; things like one of the songs during EOE is called "Mother the first other" is just very Hegel sounding. And given everything that happened in story up to that point it didn't make sense for Anno to be so pessimistic; at least not full 100% pessimistic like Sartre. Plus Instrumentality sounds also like Hegel which I think I mentioned above in the post.
And the characters did say things like "so what if hell is other people i.e it ain't so bad" so I felt if I said this was Sartre I would have to explain why this isn't super pessimistic and that would just confuse things more since I'd have to explain things outside the scene and the post was already big and I was more concerned with describing the ideas at work than not my opinion on what it all means. Plus I felt like the ending was overall happy anyway; like I'd be wrong to say it was Satre. So using common sense I just decided it was Hegel since taking everything into account it seems much, much more likely. But It would be nice if Anno was as direct as the writer you mentioned anyways lol.

Anyway just sharing thoughts and thanks again for recommending book.
hmmm

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Postby Shark Knight » Mon Mar 07, 2016 12:15 pm

wow this is actually a really good analysis! I am blown out!
So it was true like I suspected! the tv show it's what is going throught Shinji's head during EOE.

Good job man!
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Postby gatotsu911 » Mon Mar 07, 2016 3:12 pm

I am fairly certain Anno never read Hegel. He admits straight-up he never read Kierkegaard.

It is possible to absorb a lot of ideas, even fairly abstract or complex ones, via cultural osmosis. Especially when those ideas come from some of the most influential thinkers of the past half-millennium.
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Postby robersora » Mon Mar 07, 2016 5:25 pm

Very extensive, well thought out post. I think you could have written it a little bit less meandering, though.
Funny thing is, I never read Hegel, but I always read the scene the same way. Nice to have some philosophical backup for my interpretation!
Anyhow, good job!
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Postby zlink64 » Mon Mar 07, 2016 8:06 pm

@robersa yeah... I kinda wanted to put everything I though was important at once like, if it seemed like I was meandering I apologize but, frankly, I have a long winded posting style. I've notice I write more than I have to when I post in general. Can't help it. Speaking of which lol
@gatotsu911
I understand your opinion. In fact I had it mind when I wrote this and that is part of why the analysis was so long. I consider it the biggest potential hole in my analysis. I didn't want people to telling me I was seeing things so I tried to show not only that the ideas matched but also how well it all fit together. That being said feel free to have that opinion because honestly speaking I completely understand it. If I ever meet Anno I'll ask lol.

That being said this is my response to that opinion:

I don't want to call the observations I've made a result of "Anno osmosis"; the chances of that, I think, must be extremely low. To call Hegel complicated is an understatement...one does not simply pick these things up by osmosis and if they do through literature in the way someone might by watching Evangelion, they will still not be able to explain it as accurately and clearly as the Evangelion endings do.

(I'm gonna talk about a lot of none eva stuff. If you are familiar with existentialism and think I'm saying something stupid feel free to correct me.)
But, let's say Hegel could be pick up through osmosis to degree that Anno would need to write the endings. I would still say this is not osmosis. I know I only talk about these two very short scenes but there is a lot of existentialist philosophy spread throughout the show. Like really I want to say that Eva is a existentialism cartoon. And by that I mean it deals directly with what postmodern existentialists where talking about and Anno did this consciously and deliberately. Specifically three very prominent influences I notice that are important, in order of the likely hood that he used them, are 3) Soren Kiekegaard 2)G.W.F hegel 1) Sartre Jean Paul. The reason Sartre is number 1 is because Sartre directly uses the idea of master slave in his book. He says the same exact thing Hegel says when it comes to consciousness; the major difference is his attitude towards the whole thing. And if you compare Kierkegaard with Sartre directly you'll realize all Sartre did was take Kierkegaard's ideas and secularized them and replace "God" with "freedom/choice/decision making"; there's more differences but those are the biggest ones and for our purposes what matters. So if Anno never read Hegel or Kierkegaard he would still be very aware of their ideas and understand them because he has read Sartre. Now short of doing an entire analysis of the show I can't really say directly why this show should be consider existentialism but really the most obvious piece of none direct(like dialogue,etc) proof is that Shinji obsessive over who he is and his purpose...those two things are exactly the issues that Kierkegaard and Sartre deal with in their writing; like literally that is all existentialism is. The question they ask is in light of "existence preceding essence" what is our purpose and who are we...this is literally what Shinji is trying to figure out during the show. And Sartre's answer to that is you have to figure out who you are yourself and make your own answers and no one can give you the answers but yourself....sounds a lot like what Anno says about Eva doesn't it.
hmmm

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Postby viperzero » Wed Jul 13, 2016 2:38 pm

Yea he defiantly read Hegel or someone influenced him. Unlike Sickness unto Death which only superficially references Kierkegaard, this is a full on sparknotes version of the Phenomenology of spirit.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-TISVubPMeM

Anyway as for Sartre the two are similar, he is heavily influenced by Hegel. Most 20th century Continental philosophers are like Sartre and Heidegger. At the same time Heidegger heavily influenced commentators of Hegel like Kojeve. So it has a similar feel. Sartre gets called a pessimist for "Hell is other people" but he actually didn't mean it as popularly thought

"Hell is other people" has always been misunderstood. It has been thought that what I meant by that was that our relations with other people are always poisoned, that they are invariably hellish relations. But what I really mean is something totally different. I mean that if relations with someone else are twisted, vitiated, then that other person can only be hell. Why? Because … when we think about ourselves, when we try to know ourselves … we use the knowledge of us which other people already have. We judge ourselves with the means other people have and have given us for judging ourselves.


Anyway the language in Eva is much more Hegelian then existential. You don't hear much about process for example in Sartre. Also their not talking all that much about anxiety and bad faith so much as freedom and value from the recognition of others. I wouldn't say an Existential interpretation is wrong mind you just less what they where aiming for. Their does seem to be some of that in the background which makes me wonder if their not reading Hegel directly from the source.

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Postby Worldgamer » Thu Apr 05, 2018 4:23 am

Thank you very much for explaining this. Before I read this, I watched some videos explaining the basic plot of evangelion, but I never really could wrap my head around this whole “instrumentality” thing seele was trying to archive. I got that they were trying to archive instrumentality but I didn't get what it was, until I read this of course.

To reassure you, I totally agree with what you said, it feels like I finally get what was going on. I feel kinda fulfilled right now lol... But I would have never been able to understand this on my own because I didn't have the time or sanity to look through all this myself. I'm very lucky to have found your explanation (I just found this by chance in a comment section of a video dammit). You are a real trooper for doing this for us lol.

I'm very thankful to you for finding the time to research and write all this and even taking out scenes frame by frame like you did. (I am also thankful to the guy who linked this in his video lol.)

Although I feel that heavy burden was lifted, by understanding this instrumentality thingy, there is still one thing I don't get which is still troubling me. I get that we humans or rather the beings created from the seed of knowledge have this “primordial will” as you explained towards the ending and that that is what makes humans human. But what makes angels angel.... lol. If creatures created from the seed of life don't have the will humans have, why do they even exist in the first place?

This is for anyone who reads this comment: Idk if anyone will be able to answer this question in a way that is convincing to me. Maybe this has an obvious answer I didn't really pick up while reading and if so please feel free to try to answer. If not still feel free to answer (lol), because any explanation is better than none I guess. At the end of the day, all we are doing here is speculating and unless Anno deliberately tells us what really goes down in this anime we can't really say if anything of what we are speculate is true (as Zlink already explained). But I'm very sure that this is the truth behind all this. If anyone knows someone else who explained the question to my angel question, please link it here.

Thank you again Zlink, for posting this explanation (I literary just made this account to reply to this lol) and if you read all of this please try to answer my question about angels, because I really respect your opinion on the matter. I would be very grateful if you took the time to look into this (I don't know how I can be more grateful than I am now fore explaining what you already have, but I guess I have to wait and see for myself lol.)

This went on longer than I expected lol.

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Postby traumalamb » Mon Apr 09, 2018 1:01 pm

This is an amazing explanation. Can say: similar ideas are a part of how I was taught to "ground" in dissociative episodes. Feeling people, noticing up and down. The boundary of us and another person is actually one of the ways our brain reassures our existence, naturally.
*screams internally in Shinjese*
It all returns to nothing
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Postby viperzero » Mon Apr 09, 2018 8:47 pm

Someone wrote something how Eva has heavy Lacan influence. Lacan was tremendously influenced by Hegal. I that that's one of the least explored areas of Eva.

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Postby zlink64 » Sat Apr 14, 2018 11:16 am

@WorldGamer
Sorry for late respond but I use this site on and off and you caught me during a break period. I'm guessing you found the link in evangelion analysis project vids. Nice guy, he me reminded to update the pics in this post once.

My attitude during writing this was to just go as far as my thoughts take me. As a result I feel like anything I say about kaworu is dangerously close to over analyzing. Like there's a lot of opinions I have on Kaworu but given the way the show is sets itself up it's hard to say anything concrete about Kaworu so it's hard to not feel like I'm over thinking it. This is not very good practice in general imo so for Kaworu it's probably just better to go on the simple side. That's just my attitude towards it so if you disagree totally understandable. Anyways what I'm trying to say is that it's probably best to just think of will as simply being the will to live or die. As to whether or not angel have this the same way humans do is probably not a question Anno intended for us to dwell on. That being said there is ton of extended lore that talks about the angels and their nature. I've read most of stuff about it on this site I think but I always end up forgetting the details so I'm definitely not the best source for that kinda stuff. You can check it out in their wiki or the forums.

You could also ask in their discord. The people are very nice and as far as I can tell seem to really like answering questions or talking about eva in general and are way more knowledgeable about that kinda stuff then I am.

https://discordapp.com/channels/3601475 ... 8697732096
(Um Sachi if you don't like me linking this here just delete it and mybad ahead of time.)

P.S This is a bit off topic but I just feel like stating this because my opinion has change a little since having written this. I kinda agree with Gatotsu911 now about it just being cultural osmosis or atleast that it's probably best to just say that. If I were to redo this the only thing I would probably change is the emphasis on saying "hegel is Anno inspiration" to instead saying that "Hegel might've been an inspiration(empahisis on might've) but at any rate Hegel is a very useful tool for analyzing Eva because Anno is essentially saying the same thing and this is why". It wouldn't change any of my conclusions at all but just mentioning because I cringe a bit every time I see some random person on the internet say some thing like "hegel is the answer" to random eva questions.

I say this because given how many real life parallel there are to the kind of ideas found in the final of Eva it's practically impossible to just claim one thing as it's source without Anno saying something. For example all this stuff reminds TraumaLamb about grounding techniques and that is a very valid way of looking at it as far as I can tell and it's not really related to Hegel. Still think Hegel is probably the best or one of the best ways to look at it all imo but still just felt like clarifying my current views/attitude on it.

Anyways thank you/see ya/hope this was at least a mildly decent response.
hmmm

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Postby StrokeMeGoat » Sat Apr 21, 2018 5:31 am

I agree with you. I also believe that, while it maybe have been Hegel's ideas that influenced the ending scene, even if that wasn't the case, Hegel's Master/Slave essay would still appear as though it had influence on that scene anyway for a pretty simple reason. His essay and ideas are well thought out and so it highlights a specific element of truth in the human experience: the truth of duality (at least when it comes to perceptions) and one fundamental way (here, master/slave and the dynamics of human interaction) it manifests time and time again in cycles, ad infinitum.

During the scene they are both representatives of themselves and all of humanity/people on a symbolic level, more specifically fitting into Hegel's view of the master and slave. It suggests that all people, as long as there were at least two, will always find themselves existing in a relationship where one is in a position that benefits one over the other for some period of time, along with the occasional unexpected and shorter-lived period where a synthesis of two things leads to an interaction where there are no good things lost and everything they gain is positive--leading to the creation of something altogether new. Hence, the scene the scene begins with Shinji straddling and strangling Asuka, her caressing his cheek and the beginning of their trade in places in the Master/Slave dynamic in a way, him breaking down and crying, and then her saying "kimochi warui", and then us being left with the possibility of humanity reforming their former selves and maybe even the two somehow ending up in a relationship or at least closer to one another.

In a way, Rei's apparition appearing before Shinji above the red sea before he attempts to strangle Asuka and foreshadows their capacity to get along and grow closer, even if just on uniting and cooperating in the way humans occasionally do when shit gets pretty hairy (which I'd say it ought to have been hairy enough, only just proceeding an apocalyptic event), which is what happens when Asuka decides to caress his cheek rather than to fight back. Rei and Kaworu said in their discussion with Shinji just before he returned to the Earth in physical form from the sea of LCL that they were the hope that people might one day understand one another, and the words "I love you"--this is what gives symbolic meaning to her appearance as a ghostly apparition at the end of EoE (as well as Ep. 1 depending on your perspective, along with making the beginning and end more one and the same).

Duality appears as a pretty central motif in both the TV ending and EoE's ending/while HIP is taking place. Hegel's essay is merely one lens from which we might view duality and its effects on our behavior. Unfortunately, the instrument one uses to observe or measure information about a subject(s) or object(s) will invariably cause the information and the data we collect to be altered in some respect from the time before it was observed or measuree, or otherwise fundamentally incomplete as a full set of data capable of being used to construct the most accurate picture of what has taken place. Just like a physical tool or instrument, a heuristic model for conceptualizing, predicting, and understanding humans, their behavior, and their interactions with one another will impose some level of restriction on how these things being studied can be interpreted. So definitely, even if the TV Ending and the EoE HIP+ending scene aren't influenced by Hegel's essay and Anno even happened to be entirely unaware of its existence at the time they were created, I think Hegel's essay does such a good job exploring how one such duality affects our lives and our interactions with one another that the truth revealed in his work will be reflected enough in the endings that it is going to appear to be an influence regardless.


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