Well yeah, very frequently different senses all arise from the same sort of core idea. Like how かかる, despite the nightmare it looks like, if you think super broadly has that same sort of “hang” idea in a lot of ways. Some a little too much a stretch to feel intuitive, but like I get it in at least a lot of cases. I don’t disagree; I was just speaking loosely.
The reason I call out long entries with lots of definitions is, I mean, I’m not that good at this. I’ve read a couple books and a lot of this super long VN but my roughly 6000 characters a day today came out to 534 lines. If that’s my stamina for a Japanese reading session, each Japanese definition entry I read is going to subtract from that (I mean obviously it’s not 1:1 per every line but you get the point). And for me, half the time it terminates in English anyway when the definitions have more words I have to look up. If I would go down the rabbit hole of Japanese definitions for words in a Japanese definition… well, the dictionary becomes the day’s project.
I know you’ve taken hardline no English and that’s impressive given when you did it but honestly I dunno how to read ANYTHING that way without just tolerating a ton of ambiguity. Which I prefer not to in the reading here; I’m going for the “intensive” style and looking up everything I don’t understand to try to follow new things.
The more I think I think about it the more I feel like Japanese dictionaries are more useful, for my purposes, to investigate words I already somewhat know. If I’m coming across a word the first time ever, I’m probably not going to even remember it. I mean, I might mine it and try to improve my memory of it that way, but if the definition isn’t basically free to me, is that the best time to devote that energy to making sure I’m getting the pure essence of the word? Some people would say yes… but I’m already always wishing I could read more than I do, and the times the English glosses fail to make sense when combined with all the surrounding context are vanishingly small. They’re worse when looking at a word in isolation, but when you just need to know what the sentence in front of you says? Hard to complain.
Basically, I won’t even disagree with you that using a monolingual definition probably speeds up the process of understanding a word’s “single concept,” but it comes at the cost of slowing down the process of actually immersing in content you care about. Does the benefit of the former actually outweigh the latter? Intuitively it feels like there is a time when it objectively wouldn’t (let’s say don’t use them at sub N5 lol) and a time when it objectively would (imagine someone near total fluency consulting Jisho for some reason). Where is the point on the line where the J-J wins out? Shame there aren’t quality studies on this kind of thing (well, to my knowledge).