Have you ever heard of Robinson Crusoe? You probably have and if you have not, I have a real-life example for you- Masafumi Nagasaki, a former photographer and factory worker from Osaka, who has been living in a completely deserted island for about twenty-nine years, which is a year more than Crusoe’s time alone on an island. But that is not the biggest difference between the two. Read more to find out.
Crusoe had been shipwrecked, whereas our guy, Mr. Nagasaki decided to live on the island and had given up civilization on his own volition. Even though he lived in a city like Osaka, Masafumi never felt like he fit into the modern way of life. He had become sick of civilization and when he moved to the island, he only planned to stay for two years but after a typhoon took back even the last of his belongings with it, he gave up the idea of ever going back. He is the only human on the island, and he roams about completely naked, except once a week, when he puts on clothes and goes to a well inhabited island nearby to purchase rice cakes, with the money that his sister lends him. You might say that he has not completely renounced civilization, but we must keep in mind and that living on a deserted island all by oneself is no easy feat.
When asked what’s the one thing that he wished he had from the world of civilization, he says, it is a lighter. Masafumi believes that things like money and organized religion are making humans selfish and more brutal with each passing day. He chooses to live a life of reclusion because he wants to be away from these things and other complications of modern-day civilization. He even says that he does not feel lonely because a life alone is better than a life filled with the need for possessions and other things. He had always made his wish to die in that very island noticeably clear, a death caused being taken by a typhoon are the specifics of his wish, but unfortunately, from what it looks like, his wish may not come true. His health was seen to be deteriorating and he had started to look frailer than he did before, which is why the government of Japan ordered him to be taken back to the city, where he could get medical attention.
Masafumi is a compassionate human being, who loves animals and the nature and even though it is undeniable that he needs medical help and polite treatment, one cannot help but hope that his last wish is fulfilled, and he gets to see his last day in this world in the place he has known as home for three decades. We have not heard about people like Masafumi in recent times, so even if one does not agree with his stance on materialism, his story is undeniably one of the most interesting ones that we may come across. Watch a free documentary about his story here