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What to do at a Japanese Funeral | Funeral Etiquette images

What to do at a Japanese Funeral | Funeral Etiquette

Attending a Japanese funeral can be stressful, even shocking, if you don't know what to do. The more you know beforehand the better, as you'll be able to comfort and support mutual friends and their families as is wont to do.Varying in size and ceremony, it's safe to say that most Japanese, fun…(418 words)

Former Deep Japan Writer image

Former Deep Japan Writer

Yurei, Yokai and Obake: Japan's Very Busy Ghost Scene images

Yurei, Yokai and Obake: Japan's Very Busy Ghost Scene

Ghosts and spirits hold a place in the folklore of many cultures around the world. In the western world, Halloween, observed on October 31st, is a time for scary, spooky tales, while Latin America will celebrate the deceased on the following day, November 1st, in a holiday called “Dia de Muertos”,…(1369 words)

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jdlawrence

Why Do Japanese People Call Mt. Fuji, Mr. Fuji? images

Why Do Japanese People Call Mt. Fuji, Mr. Fuji?

If you wondered why Japanese people refer to Mt. Fuji as Mr. Fuji, you are not alone.When I first came to Japan, and actually until about two years ago, well okay, actually it still happens a lot, I was confused and continue to get confused by place names.In Japanese, Mt. Fuji is called Fuj…(604 words)

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Difference of IKEBANA and Western floral arrangement? images

Difference of IKEBANA and Western floral arrangement?

When I traveled foreign countries, I found some different customs, cultures, and ideas. It is all new to me and leads me more eager to know its deep culture. I will be frequently asked the difference between IKEBANA and western floral arrangement. Here is my works above the pictures.(Lef…(275 words)

Ami image

Ami

Tatami smells good !!! images

Tatami smells good !!!

Tatami is a very traditional floor mat, which is a symbolic item indispensable for a Japanese style room; so called "Wa-shitsu", and is also considered as an official cultural gadget necessarily used in such Japanese architectures as temples, and tea rooms besides "Wa-shitsu". For example, when yo…(606 words)

Masa image

Masa

Salt is Sacred in Japan; You will see it often images

Salt is Sacred in Japan; You will see it often

Have you noticed a little mound of salt at the entrance of a restaurant during your visits to Japan?Salt was always a very important part of the Japanese diet and the ancient salt fields you see across Japan will attest to its importance in keeping Japanese people strong and healthy. Salt from …(277 words)

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A Pepper By Any Other Name Would Taste As Sweet images

A Pepper By Any Other Name Would Taste As Sweet

Someone asked me a question recently; one, that if you’ve lived in Japan long enough, have surely asked yourself: “Why do the Japanese call green bell peppers ‘piman’ and the red and yellow and orange ones ‘papurika’?”For me, answer the question was confusing on a few levels, seeing as how I, h…(381 words)

Former Deep Japan Writer image

Former Deep Japan Writer

Funniest Japanese Show in Japan: Itte-Q images

Funniest Japanese Show in Japan: Itte-Q

If you're interested in japanese TV, Itte-Q is the show to watch. Even if you don't understand Japanese, the show should be entertaining. Its on Channel 4 from 8pm every sunday. On the show, they do different things every time but the basic concept is that the comedians and celebrities on the show …(135 words)

GenS image

GenS

Learning not dressmaking but KIMONO-making images

Learning not dressmaking but KIMONO-making

Last year, I made casual kimono (Yukata) by myself from a roll of cotton fabric. (Kimono is usually made from one roll of fabric.) I was the very beginner and the process was challenging, but I really enjoyed kimono-making.Kimono-making is called Wasai in Japanese. You can learn Wasai in Miyuki…(333 words)

skymaho image

skymaho

"Little Forest" Shows you the Japan Heartland images

"Little Forest" Shows you the Japan Heartland

Thats right! I am not 12 years old. I actually have lived half a century as of this year.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q_CUp9suEeoMaybe that is exactly why I love Pixar films that show the funny side of nature and also carry a deeper meaning.I am a huge movie fan and I try to see a fi…(659 words)

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The Traditional Colors of Japan - All the colors of the rainbow and much, much more! - images

The Traditional Colors of Japan - All the colors of the rainbow and much, much more! -

Some of Japan’s colors have a lengthy background dating back to the Asuka period (538 ~ 710) and the hierarchical Japanese color system itself can be most easily traced back to 603 AD, when Prince Shōtoko established the first Twelve Level Cap and Rank System in Japan.Based on Confucian values …(368 words)

Japanista image

Japanista

Jidaigeki Period Dramas Teaching Japanese Morals images

Jidaigeki Period Dramas Teaching Japanese Morals

Jidaigeki (時代劇). Let me tell you the book definition of Jidaigeki first for many of you may not know this term at all. It is Literally "period dramas", they are most often set during the Edo period of Japanese history, from 1603 to 1868. Some, however, are set much earlier, such as Heian period—…(494 words)

AustinA image

AustinA

Why Are All the Dogs I See in Japan So Small? images

Why Are All the Dogs I See in Japan So Small?

“That looks like a Rat!” exclaimed my English friend when he saw my tiny Kaninchen Dachshund named Cloudy skirting, bouncing and happily flitting around his legs one day in the park.At over six feet tall, I don't think he could really see clearly what critter was attached to the end of the leas…(982 words)

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Shopping Seasonal Japan - Limited Edition Products images

Shopping Seasonal Japan - Limited Edition Products

“Spring passes and one remembers one's innocence.Summer passes and one remembers one's exuberance.Autumn passes and one remembers one's reverence.Winter passes and one remembers one's perseverance.” ― Yoko OnoOne of the many things I love about Japan is its distinctive four seasons. You…(259 words)

Former Deep Japan Writer image

Former Deep Japan Writer

I was born in Osaka Japan and Here is My View images

I was born in Osaka Japan and Here is My View

Let me compare Tokyo and Osaka in terms of culture by using a metaphor of kitchen accessory. Tokyo is "Sponge". It soaks up all kinds of information and people are somehow drawn to this metropolis. The majority of companies hold their headquarters in Tokyo and that's one of the reasons behind i…(450 words)

yumin image

yumin

The Saga of the 50cc license (2007) images

The Saga of the 50cc license (2007)

I've been struggling to get a 50cc motorbike license since May. You would think it would be easy but the thing is that I was determined to take the test in Japanese like all the other Japanese people in this country. After I went to day school for the certificate showing that I had taken a 50cc dri…(512 words)

Kenji image

Kenji

Oiran Parade : The screamingly bright colors! images

Oiran Parade : The screamingly bright colors!

Shinagawa Shukuba Festival is held on the last Saturday and Sunday of September every year. We just had one two weeks ago. One performance you should not miss is the parade of oiran (courtesans) wearing beautiful Kimono. If you are lucky, you will have an opportunity to watch one of those oiran par…(467 words)

EmiOnishi image

EmiOnishi

Tourist Tip #7: DON'T! images

Tourist Tip #7: DON'T!

Nobody wants to do the wrong thing when visiting a foreign country, and with Japan regarded as one of the politest countries in the world, there are plenty of wrong things that one can unintentionally D'oh!I posted a "Tourist Tip #5: Five Don'ts to Do" list a while back, and thought I would exp…(495 words)

Former Deep Japan Writer image

Former Deep Japan Writer

Japanese companies, has a theme song. images

Japanese companies, has a theme song.

Respectable company of Japan has a theme song.Professional make, easy to sing, the feeling is good.By singing, you will love the company.Japanese likes to act together.Its roots, has started from the age of six.In Japanese schools, weekly, monthly,Students will sing the school of …(105 words)

asteka image

asteka

Kansai Kyoto ben (Kansai Kyoto dialect) images

Kansai Kyoto ben (Kansai Kyoto dialect)

I was born in Kyoto and raised up in Shiga (next to Kyoto). As I lived in Kansai area until I decided to move to Tokyo for job change when I was 30, people can tell I am from Kansai after talking with me for a while :-)As I was working as a sales back then, I tried not to sound too Kansai perso…(211 words)

EmiOnishi image

EmiOnishi

“Benkyoukai” Helps People in Japan Get Ahead images

“Benkyoukai” Helps People in Japan Get Ahead

Allow me to introduce you to a term Benkyoukai. The term Benkyoukai is made up of three Kanji Characters and the first one is written as 勉, which means “exertion”. The second character is written as 強and it means “strong”. The third character is written as 会 and it means “meeting, association,…(278 words)

AustinA image

AustinA

Umeshu and Umeboshi images

Umeshu and Umeboshi

When you are supermarkets, you must have seen a bunch of bottles and suger on sale these days. Yes, this time around the year is the time to make your own Umeshu and Umeboshi at home in Japan.Umeshu (梅酒) is a Japanese liqueur made from ume fruits (while still unripe and green) in alcohol and suga…(198 words)

EmiOnishi image

EmiOnishi

Otoshidama - money gift to children images

Otoshidama - money gift to children

In Japan, adults are supposed to give money gift to their children or grandchildren including relatives'children or sometimes friend's children on New Year's Day. This custom is known as 'otoshidama.' Money is handed out in small,beautifully decorated envelopes called 'pochibukuro'. These can be b…(120 words)

EmiOnishi image

EmiOnishi

Doraemon - Robot cat images

Doraemon - Robot cat

The other day, from the local evening TV news, I learned that our Doraemon is to make his debut on US television this year (2014)!Doraemon is one of the most popular cartoon characters. He is a robot cat from the future with a magic pocket in his tummy. When I was a child, I used to sit in fron…(284 words)

EmiOnishi image

EmiOnishi

Getting Clean in Japan images

Getting Clean in Japan

When you want to get clean after a long, crowded, sweaty day on the subway, you may retreat to your bathroom and jump into a deep Japanese bathtub and let the stress of the day drift away. Many westerners love a good soak, but like many things that are wonderfully different here in Japan, there is …(290 words)

Alex image

Alex

How to sell your story in Japan? images

How to sell your story in Japan?

Many of you must have been writing your experiences on Facebook, Twitter or blogs. Wouldn’t it be nice if you could actually sell those stories? I would like to share with you how I was able to publish two books in Japan a few years ago and still receiving the royalty fees. I hope you can publi…(450 words)

Asiantiger image

Asiantiger

Shinsen near Shibuya images

Shinsen near Shibuya

There is an area "Shinsen" which is close to Shibuya on the Keio train line. This area is well known for housing many Japanese celebrities both television and movie. While it may be difficult to actually meet a Japanese celebrity, unless you know exactly who you are looking for, you can see some of…(114 words)

KurtisW image

KurtisW

For Business: a Full Suit in Japan images

For Business: a Full Suit in Japan

Pretty much every businessman in Japan wears a full suit to work everyday. This is what allows the domestic suit company Aoyama to boast that it sells the most number of suits among all suit companies around the world. In Japanese business, not only are results considered important, but also attitu…(163 words)

GenS image

GenS

Bunny Signs are the New Cute Traffic Cones in Japan images

Bunny Signs are the New Cute Traffic Cones in Japan

Sometimes I wonder how Japanese life stays so placid. Placid in a good sense, like the surface of a deep ocean on a calm day. There is a lot going on underneath but the surface is flat, peaceful and non-threatening. In Japanese we call it "Joushiki" which to me is best translated as "civility" or "…(355 words)

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Doraemon, a Nostalgic Childhood Cartoon Character for All Japanese images

Doraemon, a Nostalgic Childhood Cartoon Character for All Japanese

I remember waking up early on a Saturday morning with my sister in Hawaii to watch our favorite Saturday morning cartoons. Of all, I liked Scooby Doo the best. Why? Because he was like me, he was creative, he was always scared but he always saved the day and he definitely liked and worked hard for …(433 words)

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Journey on the Tokaido (Shinagawa is Stop Number Two) images

Journey on the Tokaido (Shinagawa is Stop Number Two)

Now that we have left the first stop Nihonbashi (described in my previous article), we are approaching our next stop of Shinagawa. Imagine you are traveling from Edo (Present Tokyo) to Kyoto during early 1800’s. It is highly likely that Tokaido Road was used to make your journey. It runs north and …(630 words)

AustinA image

AustinA

Japanese Etiquette and Queue Lines images

Japanese Etiquette and Queue Lines

Although it isn’t like someone will yell at you if you don’t follow them, there are certain rules that people follow in general on train. First of all, people rarely make phone calls on trains. If it is an emergency, you should stand up from your seat and go near the door where there are less peopl…(184 words)

GenS image

GenS

Etiquette on the train/ subway and public places... images

Etiquette on the train/ subway and public places...

As you may know, Japan is the country of courtesy and helping each other as well as trying not to bother others. Well, used to be, at least. These days, I find that it is becoming the "lost art", sadly. Nonetheless, I would like foreign tourists and visitors to know and understand Japanese way t…(537 words)

KIH image

KIH

Photography Workshops in English images

Photography Workshops in English

If you are a foreigner in Tokyo looking to learn some photography techniques in English, then you have some excellent opportunities here. In the almost 15 years that I have been in Japan, it was only about 4 years ago when I took up photography more seriously. I believe learning is a continuous pro…(396 words)

Ani image

Ani

Claps and bows in silence images

Claps and bows in silence

Every New Year's holiday, I go to Tsurugaoka Hachimangu in Kamakura. There, you first throw money, bow twice, clap your hands twice, pray and then bow once (you can follow this process at any shrine). It may sound like a complicated process, but all you have to do is follow the person before you (t…(160 words)

RieS image

RieS

My seven-tiered Hina doll set images

My seven-tiered Hina doll set

The photo shows my seven-tiered Hina doll set. My grandpa bought the set for me when I was a baby. Platforms covered with a red carpet are used to display a set of ornamental dolls (雛人形 hina-ningyō) representing the Emperor, Empress, attendants, and musicians in traditional court dress of the He…(274 words)

EmiOnishi image

EmiOnishi

Japan Gets Ready For "Godzilla" 2014 images

Japan Gets Ready For "Godzilla" 2014

The Legendary Pictures/Warner Bros. "Godzilla" opens Friday in theaters throughout Japan. The movie is being distributed by Godzilla's parent company, Toho Co., Ltd.Thus far, "Godzilla" is within a "hair's breath" of making $500 million worldwide. It will likely go over that mark during its Jap…(196 words)

ArmandV image

ArmandV

Getting your Motorcycle License images

Getting your Motorcycle License

There are a few ways to get a motorcycle license in Japan. If you have a license from your home country you can go through the process of having it transferred to a Japanese one. This process differs according the home country in question.If you don't have a license you can get one by taking th…(189 words)

Kenji image

Kenji

Seeing Kusatsu’s Yumomi Ceremony Live images

Seeing Kusatsu’s Yumomi Ceremony Live

The hot spring water that flows throughout Kusatsu comes from deep within the earth and, as a result, is very, very hot. Between 51 and 94 degrees Celsius to be exact. You may be wondering how this water is cooled. Adding cold water?One of the ways the water is brought to a comfortable temperat…(345 words)

Petra image

Petra

There is a legend of “Enma the Great”. Japanese fear so much... images

There is a legend of “Enma the Great”. Japanese fear so much...

Japanese fear,“Enma the Great”.There is a legend of “Enma the Great”.The person who lied is pulled out his tongue by “Enma the Great”.It is such a legend.So the Japanese are all, They don't speak little lie.“Enma the Great” also appeared on the Japanese music.In Japan, there…(136 words)

asteka image

asteka