“In the Japanese language, and thus in the society, a person is conceived of as a flexible and easily linkable dividuum, that is, as part split from and belonging to a larger whole. Everyone is educated to shake off the delusion of a separate individual ego, and to express supra-individual values… In contrast, the Western mind has tended to envisage the human being as a perfect and self-contained individuum (that is, indivisible whole) who should be educated to distinguish oneself from everyone else. We are encouraged to view the self as real, to discipline I and to express highly individual values. The desire to produce individual genius, a “superman,” has haunted all of Western history.”
Source: A really fascinating essay about the Japanese word “Ma” which deals with both the objective and subjective aspects of the idea of space.