- The Japanese Association of Sociology of Law
- 法社会学 (ISSN:04376161)
- vol.2006, no.64, pp.43-59,275, 2006
Human entities are of a psychic existence. They are of a pathos-like, passive existence and as such, need to act towards the outside world. The autonomous existence of an entity emerges when it actively engages the world, and through a common actual engagement with the world emerges the autonomy of an organisational entity. However, as a mechanistic way of thinking develops, the actual psychic existence of the entities comes to be replaced by a physical psychic existence. In such circumstances, although entities are still autonomous and make decisions on their own, they are unable actively to engage with the outside world. They are merely elements in an operational sequence, and the autonomous existence of not only the individual entities, but also of organisational entities is denied in such a situation. In recent years, with the growing influence of spiritualism, people increasingly become a virtual psychic existence. Here, the distinction between reality and the virtual world becomes blurred, and occasionally, a forceful, possibly even violent, realisation of the virtual world is attempted, although this does not mean that there is any actual commitment to the world.<br>Law cannot be immune from such transformation of entities, but the legal system has, however, so far been unable to cope with such entities in transformation. Problems such as the appropriateness of using brain-death as a criterion for medical death, refusal of blood transfusions by Jehovah's witnesses, and the control imposed on Aum-Shinrikyo as an organisation should be understood in this context.