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Friday, April 30, 2010

Ito Hirobumi Second Residence Hagi

伊藤博文別邸

Ito Hirobumi (1841-1909) was one of the founding fathers of modern Japan, who served as Prime Minister in the Meiji government and was later Resident General of Korea until he was assassinated by a Korean nationalist in Harbin.

Ito Hirobumi Second Residence Hagi

Born in the Hagi region, Ito was a student of Yoshida Shoin and later traveled to London as part of the "Choshu Five" sent by their clan to study and absorb Western ways and new technology. Only 17 at the time, Ito was deeply impressed by the time he spent at University College London and became an avid supporter of Japan's Westernization and modernization.

On his return to Japan, Ito was instrumental in persuading the Choshu domain to seek an alliance with Western powers as a way to undermine and overthrow the Tokugawa regime.

Ito Hirobumi Second Residence Hagi

After the Meiji Restoration in 1868, Ito traveled to both the USA and Europe to gather information on drafting a new constitution for Japan. Becoming Japan's first Prime Minister in 1885, Ito was to serve in the post on three later occasions.

As an elder statesman Ito became Resident General of Korea as Japan began to extend its control of the Korean Peninsula. He was assassinated in Harbin by An Jung-geun, a Korean nationalist.

Hirobumi's early childhood home (Ito Hirobumi Old Residence) and his later, grander residence from Shinagawa, Tokyo are now preserved in Hagi a short stroll behind Shoin Shrine. The Second Residence is a spacious, traditional-style Japanese home with tatami flooring. Visitors must remove their shoes before entering.

Hours: 9am-5pm
Admission: 100 yen
Tel: 0838 25 3139

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Thursday, April 29, 2010

Adashino Nenbutsu Temple Kyoto

Adashino Nenbutsu Temple化野念仏寺

Adashino Nenbutsu is a Buddhist temple located up a long winding road leading from the famous bamboo forest in Arashiyama, Kyoto.

The temple dates to 811 C.E., when Kukai is believed to have founded it.

The temple itself sits atop a hill where in the Heian Period people abandoned bodies.

As a way of memorializing the dead, some eight thousand Buddhist statuettes have been arranged in the center of the temple grounds.

The temple is most famous for its August "sento kuyo," a ceremony dedicated to the spirits of the dead. On that night, about ten thousand stone statues are lit up with candles.

Incredibly beautiful and mysterious.

Access

From the center of Arashiyama - accessible by the JR Saga Station, Arashiyama Station on the Keifuku Line, or on the other side of the river Arashiyama Station on the Hankyu Line - it is a 25 minute walk. Go through the bamboo forest, cross the JR tracks, follow the path up into the hills past temple after temple.

17 Adashino-cho, Saga-Torimoto, Ukyo-ku, Kyoto

Entrance Fee

500 yen

Adashino Nenbutsu Temple© JapanVisitor.com

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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Tokyo Sky Tree

東京スカイツリー



Tokyo Sky Tree - a project of the the Tobu Railway Co., Ltd. and Tobu Tower Skytree Co., Ltd. - is one of the most exciting building projects happening in Tokyo, and definitely the most exciting thing happening in the drear corner of Tokyo's Sumida ward where it is being built.

Tokyo Sky Tree


Construction began on this super modern looking broadcasting tower in July 2008, and completion is scheduled for March/April 2012. But it is touted as more than just a broadcasting tower. It is also a landmark, on which much has been lavished in terms of design and technological expertise. And it is also a "town with a tower," to become a 3 hectare complex that includes commercial, academic, and museum facilities, including a high rise building. The two observatories, one at 350m, the second at 450m, will include restaurants and shops.

SkyTree looks set, therefore to give more than a boost to just the skyline of eastern Tokyo. It will give a boost to surrounding Sumida ward as well.

Sumida ward is well known for its sumo, with the Kokugikan sumo indoor stadium and the excellent and avant-garde-looking Tokyo Edo Museum, both in Ryogoku. However, once you're out of that vicinity right by the Sumida River and go any further west, you strike what is pretty much urban desert: dull, old, uninspired, low rise concrete buildings with little of anything - not even any supermarkets or shopping malls. The next island of commerce is Kinshicho, one stop from Oshiage station (near which Sky Tree stands), south on the Hanzomon subway line, or Asakusa, a stop or two west.

Sky Tree has been built smack in the middle of that nothingness, right next to Narihira Station on the Tobu Isesaki Line. It's hard to imagine right now how Sky Tree is going to do much to rejuvenate anything much more than the block of land it's to be built on, or to foster "a future community formed at its foot [that] will be one of a kind filled with tenderness" (from the English-language pamphlet), but at least it will provide eastern Sumida with something very striking to show off.

Sumida's pride will be double in that not only will Sky Tower be taller than any other building in Tokyo - or Japan, but it will take over Tokyo Tower's broadcasting signal transmission role.

The Sky Tree will be lit up at night in two different lighting patterns on alternate days.

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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Shinkansen N700 Series

N700系

The Shinkansen N700 Series is JR's latest Shinkansen and incorporates tilting capability for both better performance and speed.

Shinkansen N700 Series

N700 series bullet trains have a maximum speed of 300 km/h (186 mph) and are gradually replacing older models on JR's network. The N700 can reach a velocity of 270 km/h in just three minutes.

N700 trains operate on Nozomi, Hikari and Kodama services from Tokyo Station and are equipped with wireless internet available for rail passengers between Tokyo and Shin-Osaka stations.

Shinkansen N700 Series



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Monday, April 26, 2010

Nagoya Friends - LATIN FEVER at Hotel Osu Plaza MONDAY 5/3

Nagoya Friends
and

present

Latin Party


  • Date: Monday , May 3rd, 2010
  • Time: 6-8:30pm (Lesson from 6-6:30pm. All you can drink ends at 8:15pm.)
  • Place: Hotel Osu Plaza, 2-24-45 Osu, Naka-ku, Nagoya Shi
  • (1 minute walk from Exit 2, Osu Kannon Station. Right next to Osu Temple !)
  • Fee: Reserved 2800 yen, Non-Reserved 3500 yen
  • Dress code: Anything (Casual, etc)
  • This is a dance event and will not have any food available.
  • Reservations: Not necessary but recommended and appreciated. Just show up to the party!
  • Free Lesson Provided by the staff of Osu Festa. They have been teaching since 1998 and were professionally liscensed by the UK Association of professional dance teachers. There will also be a visiting dance troupe from Canada giving a demonstration as well.

There will be free drinks (beers, wine, cocktail drinks and juices).
EVERYBODY is welcome to join regardless of nationality/gender. Reservation is greatly appreciated.
About 125-150+ people are expected to attend. Approximately 55% female and 45% male, 70% Japanese and 30% non-Japanese.
Pictures from previous Nagoya Friends Parties.
Map & Directions
Contact: (070)5030-3580 (Japanese) 080-5469-6317(English)
Hotel Osu Plaza, 2-24-45 Osu, Naka-ku, Nagoya Shi
Train Directions
  • From Nagoya Stn. take the Higashiyama Subway line to Fushimi Stn. At Fushimi, change trains to the Tsurumai Line and then take that train to Osu Kannon Stn.
  • From Nagoya Stn take the Sakuradori Line to Marunouchi. At Marunouchi, change trains to the Tsurumai Line and take that train to Osu Kannon Stn.

Osu Kannon Station
Tsurumai Line
1 minute walk from Exit 2, Osu Kannon Station. Right next to Osu Temple !)
Hotel Osu Plaza, 2-24-45 Osu, Naka-ku, Nagoya Shi
if you get lost call Hero at (080)3668-3780

© JapanVisitor.com

Tokyo Metro Sign

東京メトロのロゴ

The destinctive pale blue and white Tokyo Metro sign is a Japanese design classic.

The new logo replaced the old Teito Rapid Transit Authority (TRTA) "S" style design in 2004 when the capital's subway network was renamed Tokyo Metro.

Tokyo Metro Sign

The sign can be seen at all Tokyo subway stations operated by Tokyo Metro. Toei Subway stations have a different green-leaf style logo.



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Sunday, April 25, 2010

Japan This Week 25 April 2010

今週の日本

Japan News.Japan Tries to Face Up to Growing Poverty Problem

New York Times

非接触与误报—从日本媒体爆料的一张假照片谈起

Caijing

Toyota to pay record $16.4m fine

Guardian

Anime a la moda (en Barcelona)

El Pais

A drinking guide to the ancient capital

Japan Times

Au Japon, Prada est accusé de licencier "les moches"

Le Monde

Dolphin hunt: 'We must open our eyes'

BBC

Japan’s Stumbling Revolution

Japan Focus

Japan Coach Takeshi Okada Wary Of The Netherlands' Arjen Robben

Yahoo Sports

Last week's Japan news


Japan Statistics

In a recent BBC/Yomiuri poll, people in 33 countries were asked whether they considered the influence negative or positive of 16 countries and the EU. Germany was the most positively viewed country. Japan was second (53% positive, 21% negative).

Iran was the least favorably viewed (56% negative).

Source: BBC/Yomiuri

Uniqlo has set a record. The Japanese retailer has agreed to pay over $300 million USD over 15 years. The deal was announced by Cushman Wakefield and landlord Crown Acquisitions.

Source: Bloomberg

Convenience store sales fell 4.9% in March, when compared to figures from March 2009.

Source: Kyodo News

Rate of Poverty, USA: 17.1%
Rate of Poverty, Japan: 15.7%

Source: OECD

© JapanVisitor

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Saturday, April 24, 2010

Walking tour of Sensoji Temple Asakusa Tokyo

浅草寺 徒歩旅行


Sensoji Temple, AKA Asakusa Kannon Temple, is Tokyo's oldest Buddhist temple, said to have been built in the 7th century. The temple is located in the Asakusa district, an old market town in Tokyo that is thronged with people visiting the temple and shopping at the huge number of restaurants and souvenir stores that line the streets and the avenue leading up to the temple.

JapanVisitor's own David takes you on a tour of Sensoji Temple and the surrounding Kaminarimon district in this YouTube video. Enjoy!

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Friday, April 23, 2010

Omuro Sakura Ninnaji Temple

Ninnaji Temple御室桜

This year was a splendid year for cherry blossoms in Kyoto.

In mid-March a warm spell stoked fears that the cherry trees would bloom two weeks ahead of schedule. Tour companies and hotels experienced a brief panic.

That was then allayed by a sharp cold snap.

The result was that the buds held off blossoming. Once they did, the cold weather - and no heavy rain - held the pink blossoms on the branches for about a week.

Every night along the Kamo River there were "yozakura" (literally, "night cherry blossom") parties.

The blossoms finally fluttered to the ground about a week ago.

For those in western Kyoto, though, there is one more chance to enjoy the the blossoms.

Ninnaji Temple has a collection of small, late-blooming cherry trees known as Omuro Sakura, which is named for the surrounding neighborhood.

The Omuro Sakura can be seen above right, while the "normal" (perhaps Someiyoshi?) cherry blossoms, almost gone, are pictured below left.

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Thursday, April 22, 2010

A different kind of redundancy in Japan

仕事がない会社員

Redundancy in Japan
The common wisdom about Japan is that it is a nation of workaholics. Indeed, Japanese people usually take their job very seriously. They are typically really into their job - whatever it is. Many of them seem to achieve the enviable state of their job being their hobby.

Needless to say, many of them are overworked, suffering chronic lack of sleep and very high levels of workload stress, spending the kind of hours at the office that you might expect of highly paid executives - but without executive-type pay or position.

And yet again, conversely, there are many, many times in Japan that you would be forgiven for thinking that work for Japanese people is as much about standing around talking and drinking tea as it is about busting a gut.

Take the scene I snapped above just down the road from the office in Tokyo's Kojimachi district. No less than four laborers were working on fixing a few paving stones in the sidewalk - a job that "back home" would take a maximum of two. No less than three people connected with the company commissioning the job and the company doing the job are standing around, arms folded or hands on hips, just watching.

Reminds me of the time I was accosted and quizzed on the street one night in Shinjuku carrying a suitcase by a carload of no less than seven policemen, or a couple of months ago when I aroused the ire of two railway station staff by asking one of them for directions when at the time both of them were vying to give directions to another customer.

As life in Japan sure brings home, while hard work and efficiency have their time and place, taking it easy has its too. Redundancy in Japan isn't just about having no job.

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Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Okhotsk Limited Express Train Hokkaido

オホーツク

The Okhotsk limited express train runs between Sapporo and Abashiri in Japan's most northerly island of Hokkaido.

The journey time is about 5 hours and 20 minutes with daily trains leaving Sapporo Station at 7.21am, 9.41am, 3.08pm and 5.30pm.

Okhotsk Limited Express Train Hokkaido

Trains stop at Takikawa, Asahikawa, Kamikawa, Engaru and Kitami stations.

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Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Kyoto & Tokyo Shamanism Workshop

The Foundation for Shamanic Studies
シャーマニズム研究財団

"Shamanism is a path of knowledge, not of faith, and that knowledge cannot come from me or anyone else in this reality. To acquire that knowledge, including the knowledge of the reality of the spirits, it is necessary to step through the shaman's doorway and acquire empirical evidence."

Michael Harner, Ph.D.
FSS Founder and President
Author of The Way of the Shaman

The Basic Workshop in Core Shamanism (Weekend)

Kyoto: May 15 - 16, 2010
Tokyo: May 27 - 28, 2010

Core Shamanism

Core shamanism is the universal or near-universal principles and practices of shamanism not bound to any specific cultural group or perspective, as originated, researched, and developed by Michael Harner. Since the modern world overwhelmingly lost its shamanic knowledge centuries ago due to political and religious oppression, the Foundation’s programs in core shamanism are particularly intended for modern peoples to reacquire access to their rightful spiritual heritage through quality workshops and training courses. Training in core shamanism includes teaching students to alter their consciousness through classic shamanic non-drug techniques such as repetitive drumming so that they can discover their own hidden spiritual resources, transform their lives, and learn how to help others. Core shamanism does not focus on ceremonies, such as those of Native Americans, which are part of the work of medicine men and women, persons who do both shamanism and ceremonial work.

Michael Harner's
The Way of the Shaman: Shamanic Journeying, Power, and Healing

The Basic Workshop in Core Shamanism (Weekend)

Kyoto: May 15 - 16, 2010
Tokyo: May 27 - 28, 2010

During the Basic experiential workshop, participants are introduced to core shamanism, the universal and near-universal basic methods of the shaman to enter non-ordinary reality for problem solving and healing.

Particular emphasis is on the classic shamanic journey, one of the most remarkable visionary methods used by humankind to explore the hidden universe otherwise known mainly through myth and dream. Participants are initiated into shamanic journeying, aided by drumming and other techniques for experiencing the shamanic state of consciousness and for awakening dormant spiritual abilities, including connections with Nature. Practice includes comparisons by participants of their discoveries in shamanic journeys as well as being introduced to shamanic
divination and healing. They are also provided with methods for journeying to meet and study with their own individual spirit helpers in nonordinary reality, a classic step in shamanic practice. Participants learn how the journey is utilized to restore spiritual power and health, and how shamanism can be applied in contemporary daily life to help heal oneself, others, and the Planet. Basic and Advanced courses to be continuously offered in Japan and Asia.

The Foundation for Shamanic Studies Faculty for Asia: Kevin Turner
shamanismjapan@yahoo.co.jp
Tel/fax: 075-723-4379

English website: www.shamanism.org
Japanese website: www.shamanism.org/workshops/japanese.html

Kevin Turner’s English bio: www.shamanism.org/fssinfo/turnerbio.html

Kevin Turner's site: www.shamanism-asia.com

シャーマニズム研究財団

The Foundation for Shamanic Studies

「シャー マニズムとは、知識の道であって信仰の道ではない。そしてその知識は、私や或はこのリアリティ(現実)における他の誰からも得ることは出来ない。精霊達の 現実に関する知識を含むこの知識を身につけるには、シャーマンの門戸をくぐり、自らの経験を通して証拠を掴んでいかねばならない。」

マイケル・ハーナー Michael Harner, Ph.D
シャーマニズム研究財団創設者及び財団長
『シャーマンへの道』著者


コア・シャーマニズム
Core Shamanism

コア・シャーマニズム(核心のシャーマニズム)とは、マイケル・ハーナーが考案、研究、発展させた、シャーマニズムにおけるほぼ普遍的と言える原理とその 実践のことであり、いかなる特定の文化組織や観点とも結びつくものではない。シャーマニックな知識の大方は、政治的/宗教的弾圧が原因で、何世紀も前に甚 だしく失われてしまった。その様な背景から当財団のコア・シャーマニズムのプログラムは、現代人が良質のワークショップやトレーニングを通して、正当な精 神的文化遺産との繋がりを取り戻せるようにすることを意図している。コア・シャーマニズムのトレーニングでは、参加者が意識を変性させていく際に、繰り返 されるドラムの音の様な伝統的シャーマニズムの非薬物的手法を使い、参加者がどのように自らの隠された精神的源泉を発見し、人生を変容させ、また他者の助 けとなっていけるか、ということも教えられる。コア・シャーマニズムは、例えばネイティブアメリカン達が行う様なセレモニー(儀式)には主眼を置かない。 これらは、シャーマニズムと儀式行為の両方を行うメディスンマンやメディスンウーマン達の仕事の一部である。

シャーマンへの道:シャーマンの旅、パワーとヒーリング

コア・シャーマニズム公式ベーシックワークショップ

The Way of the Shaman workshop

ベーシックの体験的ワークショップでは、参加者はシャーマンのほぼ普遍的基本体系であるコア(核心の)・シャーマニズムに触れ、問題解決やヒーリングの為 に非日常的リアリティへと入っていく。 ここで特に重要視されるのが古典的なシャーマンの旅である。これは、人類が隠された宇宙を探究する為に使った、最も注目に値する先見的な手法であり、この 手法無しには、隠された宇宙は主に神話や夢を通してのみしか知り得ないものであった。 参加者はシャーマンの旅をする手ほどきを受け、ドラムの音やその他のテクニックの助けを得ながらシャーマン的意識状態を体験し、大自然と繋がることを含む 眠っているスピリチュアルな能力を目覚めさせていく。 またシャーマンの旅の中での発見について、参加者同士で話し合ったり、シャーマンの直感的予見やヒーリングにも実習の中で触れていく。 更に、旅をする中での非日常的リアリティにて自らのスピリットヘルパーと出会い、そこから学んでいくというシャーマンの実践に於ける古典的ステップの方法 も伝授される。 このように参加者達は、この旅が如何にして自らのスピリチュアルなパワーや健康を回復させるのに役立つのか、また如何にしてシャーマニズムが現代の日常生 活の中で自分や他人を癒したり、この惑星を癒すことに適用できるのかを学ぶ。

マイケル・ハーナーによるコースデザイン講師:ケヴィン・ターナー

■京都市:4月3日(土)〜4日(日)
モンロー研究所公式コース(通訳あり)
ゲートウェイ・エクスカージョン 33,000円

■ 京都市:5月15日(土)〜16日(日)
シャーマニズム研究財団公式コース
シャーマンへの道 (通訳あり)33,000円

■ 京都市:5月22日(土)〜23日(日)定員10名( 通訳あり)
レベル1:コーディネート・リモートヴューイング(CRV)37,000 円

■ 東京都世田谷区:5月29日(土)〜30日(日)
シャーマニズム研究財団公式ワークショップ
シャーマンへの道 (通訳あり)33,000円

© JapanVisitor.com

Monday, April 19, 2010

Kushiro-Shibecha Steam Train

SL冬の湿原号

JR Hokkaido Railway Co. operates the SL Fuyu-no-Shitsugen-go steam train service through the Kushiro Wetlands in northern Hokkaido between Kushiro and Shibecha stations.

Shibecha Steam Train

The train service, which reopened in 2000, operates only in winter from January to March and just once a day along the 48km route, which takes around 75 minutes and costs 1,840 yen for a one-way trip. The Shibecha departure time is about 2pm.

Kushiro-Shibecha Steam Train

From April to September, a diesel train, the Norokko-go travels the same route.

Kushiro Station
Tel: 0154 22 4314


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Hokkaido Steam Trains Shibecha Kushiro

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Japan This Week 18 April 2010

今週の日本

Japan News.Toyota Delayed a U.S. Recall, Documents Show

New York Times

日本色情文化很强大

Caijing

Whale hunting deal could limit Japan's catch

Guardian

Toyota suspende la producción del Lexus GX 460

El Pais

U.S. floats modified plan on Futenma

Japan Times

iPad interior reveals power struggle between Japan and Korea

Times Online

A Roissy, des voyageurs «lost in translation»

Libération

Porn virus publishes web history of victims on the net

BBC

For Japanese Women, The Past Is The Latest Fad

NPR

Opening Day Homecoming for Matsui

New York Times

Okada backs Europe-based players for World Cup

Yahoo Sports

Last week's Japan news


Japan Statistics

Japan's population declined by 183,000 people last year, according to the government sources.

That was a record decline of 0.14%.

Source: Japan Times

© JapanVisitor

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Japanese Mountain

Mountain outside Kyoto

We drove the winding road out of Kyoto, beginning at Ninnaji Temple, on the west side of town.

Leaving Kyoto, you go up past Takao, through many tunnels - and temperate zones - en route to a weekend vegetable market.

The market was 30 minutes outside the city in area known as Keihokucho.

Local products were laid out in a parking lot next to a wooden community center.

After stocking up on vegetables, we took a drive down country roads to a park famous for its cherry trees. The view was lovely - pink petals, green grass, traditional farm houses in the distance, and a river nearby - until you turned around.

Directly behind us was a mountain that had been carved courtesy of a Construction Ministry project.

Aside from providing jobs for a local construction company, it is hard to know what benefit would accrue from such invasive work.

There were no roads or houses near the foot of this mountain. Therefore, flood protection or landslide prevention would not seem to be the goal.

© JapanVisitor.com

Friday, April 16, 2010

Nagoya Friends TOMORROW at MyBar 4/17 (Sat.)

Nagoya Friends 85nd party in Nagoya!
at


  • Date: TOMORROW!! Saturday April 17th, 2010
  • Time: 18:30 - 21:00
  • Drinks will be served between 6:30pm-8:45pm.
  • Place: MyBar (Tatenomachi Bldg B1F, 3-6-15, Nishiki, Naka-ku)
  • Fee: 3000 Yen
  • Dress code: Anything (Casual, etc)
  • Reservations: Not necessary but recommended and appreciated. Just show up to the party!
  • Over 25,000 Yen worth of exciting prize giveaways each month!
There will be free food along with free drinks (beers, wine, cocktail drinks and juices).
Our party is not a dinner party, but we will have light food & snacks.
Quantities are limited, so please come early! Please free to come alone or bring your friends.
EVERYBODY is welcome to join regardless of nationality/gender. Reservation is greatly appreciated.
About 125-150+ people are expected to attend. Approximately 55% female and 45% male, 70% Japanese and 30% non-Japanese.
Pictures from previous Nagoya Friends Parties.
Map & Directions
Contact: 080-3648-1666(Japanese) 080-5469-6317(English)
Sakae Stn, Higashiyama/Meijo lines, Exit 3
MyBar (Tatenomachi Bldg B1F, 3-6-15, Nishiki, Naka-ku)
Located in the heart of Sakae adjacent the TV Tower on the West side.
Train Directions
  • From Nagoya Stn. take the Higashiyama Subway line to Sakae Station (GET OFF at Sakae Station!!) Take exit #3 Walk straight out and go up about a block. MYBAR is on your left.

Sakae Station
Higashiyama/Meijo Line
Sakae Stn, Higashiyama/Meijo lines, Exit 3
Walk straight out and go up about a block. MYBAR is on your left.
Tatenomachi Bldg B1F, 3-6-15, Nishiki, Naka-ku
Chubu - Nagoya
if you get lost call (052) 971-8888

© JapanVisitor.com

Tachiagare Nihon! The new "Sunrise Party of Japan"

たちあがれ日本

たちあがれ日本.【時事通信社】[http://www.afpbb.com/article/politics/2718546/5607147]

Another new political party has just been launched in Japan, on April 10, called (sweetly) in English, the “Sunrise Party,” but (somewhat more gruffly) in Japanese “Tachiagare Nihon,” or “Japan, Get Up!”/“Japan, Awake!”

It is fronted by former members of the Liberal Democratic Party that recently lost its decades-long hold on power to the Democratic Party of Japan (which also contains many ex-LDP members!). The five National Diet representatives who are members of the newly founded Tachiagare Nihon party have an average age of almost 70.

A survey of 1,037 people carried out by the Yomiuri Shimbun newspaper a few days ago revealed that only 18% of them held out any hope for the new party, while 76% “expected nothing” from it. This is marginally better than the respondents’ expectations of the newly ruling DPJ, which were 15% hopeful, 83% “expecting nothing.”

Tachiagare Nihon (“Sunrise Party”) was a name dreamed up by none other than the Governor of Tokyo, Shintaro Ishihara, and has been attracting its share of ridicule in the blogosphere not least because its gung-ho name sits oddly with the ages of its members. The two front men of the party, Kaoru Yosano and Takeo Hiranuma, being 71 and 70 years old.

Yosano and Hiranuma are conservative career politicians born into Japan’s ruling elite, and associated for most of their careers with the LDP. Both have held more than one ministerial position in the past, Yosano three times, and Hiranuma four times, plus numerous other positions of high responsibility in government.

The odd contrast between the wizened protagonists and the name of their party has pressed the button of a lot of bloggers who picked up instantly on the sexual overtones of the name.

The word “tachiagare” (“get up”) is rendered in the phonetic hiragana script, which the founders decided had a more modern look to it than having it in Chinese characters. In doing so they have opened it up to double entendre. tachi, written as 立ち or 起ち, means “arising, getting up," but written as 勃ち means “having an erection.” Thus a bloggers’ field day.

The photo at the top of the two founders, along with another Nihon Tachiagare member, Diet member Hiroyuki Sonoda (68), sleeping soundly during parliamentary proceedings sums up the general perception of the party.

Finally, a sample of Japanese blogger parodies:

抱きしめて日本 dakishimete Nihon (“Hold me, Japan.”)
    ↓
口づけて日本 kuchizukete Nihon (“Kiss me, Japan.”)
    ↓
胸揉んで日本 munemonde Nihon (“Fondle my breasts, Japan.”)
    ↓
服脱がせ日本 fukunugase Nihon (“Undress me, Japan.”)
    ↓
きれいだよ日本 kirei da yo, Nihon (“I'm gorgeous, I am, Japan.”)
    ↓
そろそろいいかい日本 sorosoro ii kai, Nihon (“So let’s get down to it, Japan.”)
    ↓
あれどうした日本 are doushita, Nihon (“Huh? What’s the matter, Japan?")
    ↓
たちあがれ日本  tachiagare Nihon (“Get it up, Japan.")
    ↓
たちあがれ日本  tachiagare Nihon (“Get it up, Japan.")
    ↓
たちあがれ日本!! tachiagare Nihon (“Get it up, Japan!!")
    ↓
たってくれよ日本!!! tatte kure yo, Nihon (“Would you please get it the hell up, Japan!!!)

[http://ameblo.jp/coro-box/entry-10503169249.html]

© JapanVisitor.com

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Shinagawa Kumin Park

品川区民公園

Shinagawa Kumin Park.


Shinagawa Kumin Park, in Tokyo's Shinagawa ward, is one of Tokyo's best kept park secrets. This 13-hectare blend of different types of scenery, hundreds of trees, and large saltwater lake, is a must-visit for any park-lover.

The Park is a sprawling, naturally landscaped retreat from the city bustle running north-south, over a kilometer in length, and almost 13 hectares (31 acres) in area. Parks closer to the center of Tokyo may be equally as beautiful, but the size, diversity, natural landscaping, and multifarious facilities of Shinagawa Kumin Park make for a more liberating feel of getting away from it all, and offer more to do, especially for children.

Read more about Shinagawa Kumin Park (and check out the YouTube video at the end of the article.)

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Wednesday, April 14, 2010

English Teachers new comedy web series from Japan

"English Teachers" is a new comedy web series from award winning director Anthony Gilmore satirizing the English language conversation school industry in Japan! Set in Nagoya and made by teachers who live and work in Japan, "English Teachers" is a brand new look at Japanese life and culture. It is currently in pre-production with the first episode scheduled to be released Fall 2010.

English Teachers new comedy web series from Japa

"English Teachers" plot summary:

Unsure of the next step in his life and looking for adventure, Tom Carlson does what thousands of others do every year and travels to Japan to teach English. Unfortunately he ends up at the financially struggling conversation school Be Yes! School of English, where he faces an impossible manager, a bitter ex-pat supervisor and incompetent foreign teaching staff!

"English Teachers" aims to do 3 things:

1. To release weekly webisodes free of charge.
2. To provide an honest and fresh take on living and working in Asia and
Japanese life and culture.
3. To create an online teaching community where people can give advice,
share information and swap stories about living in Asia and teaching ESL.

Get involved with "English Teachers"!

Come and join our rapidly growing online community at your favourite site below and get involved in the discussion! We want the ESL teachers in Asia, the people into Japanese and Asian culture, indie rock bands to compose our theme songs, the otaku both in Japan and abroad, the people curious about teaching in Asia...we need all your comments, suggestions
and voices to help our show grow and our community grow!

Hope to see you there!

www.facebook.com/englishteachersseries

www.twitter.com/englishseries

www.englishteachersseries.com

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Tuesday, April 13, 2010

San-ai Dream Center Building Ginza

三愛ドリームセンター

The iconic, circular, glass tower of the San-ai Building in Tokyo's Ginza is located above the intersection at Chuo dori.

San-ai Building Ginza

The second floor Doutor cafe is known as a great spot for people watching down below.

The tower was finished in the 1960s and is illuminated at night.

San-ai Dream Center Building
Ginza 5-7-2
Chuo-ku
Tokyo
104-0061
Tel: 03 3566 4141

Take exit A2 from Ginza Station on the Hibiya, Ginza and Marunouchi lines.

© Guillaume Marcotte & JapanVisitor.com

Monday, April 12, 2010

Nagoya Friends THIS SATURDAY at MyBar 4/17 (Sat.)

Nagoya Friends 85nd party in Nagoya!
at


  • Date: Saturday April 17th, 2010
  • Time: 18:30 - 21:00
  • Drinks will be served between 6:30pm-8:45pm.
  • Place: MyBar (Tatenomachi Bldg B1F, 3-6-15, Nishiki, Naka-ku)
  • Fee: 3000 Yen
  • Dress code: Anything (Casual, etc)
  • Reservations: Not necessary but recommended and appreciated. Just show up to the party!
  • Over 25,000 Yen worth of exciting prize giveaways each month!
There will be free food along with free drinks (beers, wine, cocktail drinks and juices).
Our party is not a dinner party, but we will have light food & snacks.
Quantities are limited, so please come early! Please free to come alone or bring your friends.
EVERYBODY is welcome to join regardless of nationality/gender. Reservation is greatly appreciated.
About 125-150+ people are expected to attend. Approximately 55% female and 45% male, 70% Japanese and 30% non-Japanese.
Pictures from previous Nagoya Friends Parties.
Map & Directions
Contact: 080-3648-1666(Japanese) 080-5469-6317(English)
Sakae Stn, Higashiyama/Meijo lines, Exit 3
MyBar (Tatenomachi Bldg B1F, 3-6-15, Nishiki, Naka-ku)
Located in the heart of Sakae adjacent the TV Tower on the West side.
Train Directions
  • From Nagoya Stn. take the Higashiyama Subway line to Sakae Station (GET OFF at Sakae Station!!) Take exit #3 Walk straight out and go up about a block. MYBAR is on your left.

Sakae Station
Higashiyama/Meijo Line
Sakae Stn, Higashiyama/Meijo lines, Exit 3
Walk straight out and go up about a block. MYBAR is on your left.
Tatenomachi Bldg B1F, 3-6-15, Nishiki, Naka-ku
Chubu - Nagoya
if you get lost call (052) 971-8888

© JapanVisitor.com

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Japan This Week 11 April 2010

今週の日本

Japan News.Colonial-Era Dispute Agitates South Koreans

New York Times

日本外交蓝皮书重视日美同盟

Caijing

Tokyo kicks off carbon trading scheme

Guardian

Japanese students passing on US universities

Washington Post

Un hito del 'manga' español

El Pais

Court: disclose Okinawa papers

Japan Times

Japan's whale meat obsession

Global Post

Japon, une décennie de transition, par Niels Planel

Le Monde

China executes three more Japanese drug smugglers

BBC

Nikkei Restricts Links to Its New Web Site

New York Times

Japan's players booed after 3-0 loss

Yahoo Sports

Last week's Japan news


Japan Statistics

Verifiable executions, 2009:

China: Unknown (suspected to be in the thousands)
Iran: At least 389
Iraq: At least 120
Saudi Arabia: At least 69
USA: 52
Yemen: At least 30
Sudan: At least 9
Vietnam: At least 9
Syria: At least 8
Japan: 7

Source: Amnesty International

Cost of water per 100 gallons:

Tokyo: $0.74
Beijing: $0.20
Copenhagen: $3.43
Newcastle: $1.46
New York: $0.80
Rio de Janeiro: $0.34

Source: National Geographic

The most most important attributes in the opposite sex according to unmarried Japanese women and men in their 30s and 40s:

Women (when ranking traits in potential male partners):

1. Not in debt
2. Same values
3. Earnings potential
4. Healthy
5. Does not gamble

Men (when ranking traits in potential female partners):

1. Same values
2. Doesn't lie
3. Not in debt
4. Healthy
5. Kind

Source: Asahi Shinbun

Japan's rank in a World Economic Forum on the equality of sexes was recently lowered from 91 (our of 134) to 101.

Professor Yayoi Sugihashi, an expert on economic statistics at Kanazawa University, questioned the original ranking and submitted her own data. As a result, the ranking was revised.

Japan has the lowest ranking among developed countries.

Source: Yomiuri Shinbun

© JapanVisitor

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Meirin Elementary School Hagi

明倫館

The Meirinkan in central Hagi was established in 1718 in the grounds of Hagi Castle and was a major han (feudal domain) school, which trained many of the men who would become major players in the Meiji Restoration of 1868. Yoshida Shoin, Kido Takayoshi and Takasugi Shinsaku were all graduates of the school started by the daimyo (feudal lord) of Choshu, Mori Yoshimoto.

Meirin Elementary School Hagi

Adjacent to the main school buildings is the Yubi-kan - a martial arts hall used for kendo and spearmanship. It is believed Sakamoto Ryoma participated in the inter-domain games that were held here at the time.

Meirin Elementary School Hagi

The large wooden buildings are still in use today as part of Hagi City Meirin Elementary School. The school is directly opposite Hagi City Hall.

Meirin Elementary School Hagi

Hagi Video Guide



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Friday, April 09, 2010

Hirosawa Lake Kyoto

Heron in Kyoto's Hirosawa no Ike Lake広沢の池京都

On a trip to Kyoto's Lake Hirosawa, we saw cherry blossoms and many white and blue heron.

In Japanese, they are known as "shirasagi."

The male (?) in front of us is about 2-3 feet tall, and was completely unfazed by our presence.

He was hunting - for food and for a smaller white (female?) nearby.

Another blue heron was approaching the female from the opposite side.

Just west of the lake was a nursery filled with cherry trees. There was also statuary and a beautiful cistern.

Later, we strolled over beyond the lake to Daikakuji Temple.

moss covered cistern© JapanVisitor.com

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Thursday, April 08, 2010

Zen Sand Sculptures



Sand and gravel gardens are an intrinsic feature of many Zen temples in Japan, the most famous being the stone and gravel garden at Ryoanji in western Kyoto. Raking the gravel into a distinctive pattern is part of the training of young novices, who seek perfection of form through the practiced and studied concentration of undertaking a singular and repetitive act.

Zen Sand Sculptures

Honen-in Temple, not far from Ginkakuji Temple in the Higashiyama district of Kyoto, has a beautiful raised gravel garden as you enter through the main gate.

Zen Sand Sculptures

The constant formation and destruction of these sand mandalas recalls the Tibetan tradition which symbolizes the Buddhist belief in the transitory nature of all material life - anicca.

Access

Honen-in
30 Shishigatani
Goshonodan-cho
Sakyo-ku, Kyoto
Tel: 075 771 2420

From Shijo Kawaramachi, bus #32. From Kyoto Station, bus #5 or Raku Bus #100. Get off at Ginkakuji-mae. A five-minute walk to your right along Philosopher's Walk, then turn left and walk uphill over the stream. Honen-in is on your left, as you turn right just over the stream at the sign to the temple.

© JapanVisitor.com

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Phallic Symbol Kyoto

Phallic symbol Kyoto男根象徴京都

While out looking for cherry blossoms over the weekend, just down the road from the Utano Youth Hostel, we stumbled into a nursery full of cherry trees that also had a collection of statuary.

According to a woman who worked in the nursery, the head gardener is the number one cherry tree man in Japan. The trees he has nurtured can be found in Maruyama Park, the Imperial Palace (Gosho), and many other well-known locations.

We were close to Hirosawa no Ike, a large lake near Arashiyama. The lake is full of herons and circled by cherry trees.

The lake was dug in the Heian period, and is famous as a spot for moon-viewing.

Back in the nursery many were enjoying the many varieties of cherry tree, and the statues.

The most striking was a large phallic symbol with a Buddhist image carved onto it. To its right is a representation of female pudenda.

It was surrounded by other more typical statutes.

kyoto garden© JapanVisitor.com

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Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Name the teacher's cat!

試験の問題:教師の猫の名前




A high school in Yanagawa City, Fukuoka Prefecture, has made the news with the kindergarten-type questions posed in exam questions for last school year.

In both the first- and second-term exams for the third-year botany class and and first-year general science class of Sugimori Municipal High School, questions included those about the model and color of the car the teacher drove, its license plate number, and the name of the teacher's cat.

The answers were all provided, albeit jumbled, for the students to select the correct one from. The teacher also provided verbal clues during the exam.

The overall scores for students taught by the teacher in the courses involved were between 84 and 94%, over 20% higher than the average for other classes.

The principal received complaints from outside the school (supposedly parents) and there was criticism from other teachers, too. The teacher - a male in his 40s - defended the baby-style questions as a way of ascertaining if the kids had listened to him in class. (Hey, why not ask them to remember the punch lines of jokes he'd told them, too?)

The principal admitted that the the exam questions were inappropriate, that there had been insufficient checks in place, and that improvements would be made in the third term.

As anyone teaching at universities in Japan knows, the quality of students is declining in Japan, due mainly to falling demand at educational facilities. While the population is declining, the capacity of educational facilities remains much the same. Universities are therefore easing the entrance criteria in order to keep lecture halls full. However, on the other hand, with the declining numbers of students, the pressure is no doubt on teachers to perform in a profession where personnel cuts are now likely.

A teacher pampering students with questions about his cat's name is symptomatic of an education system facing redundancy that must be fed more students, and of teachers, also facing redundancy, who must produce "results."

Read more about education in Japan.

© JapanVisitor.com

Monday, April 05, 2010

Yoshida Shoin Memorial Hall

吉田松陰記念館

Yoshida Shoin Kinenkan.


A little south of Hagi is the Yoshida Shoin Memorial Hall (Yoshida Shoin Kinenkan)。
It is most notable for the three bronze statues that stand outside in front of it, one of Yoshida Shoin himself, one of Takasugi Shinsaku, and one of Kusaka Gensui: both the latter having been taught in the late 1850s by Yoshida at his family’s Shoka-sonjuku school that produced over 80 students who went on to become prominent figures in the Meiji Restoration that modernized Japan, beginning in 1868.
The Yoshida Shoin Memorial Hall is free, and just as well, because the exhibits it contains are not particularly remarkable. They include a map detailing Yoshida’s wanderings throughout Japan, a life-size wax museum-style replica of a class at Yoshida’s Shoka-sonjuku, and several documents and replicas of documents such as letters by the great man, his last will and testament, and kakejiku, i.e. calligraphic scrolls bearing exhortative proverbs and sayings.

If you're driving to Yamaguchi from Hagi, it's worth stopping for a look. There are also refreshments on sale. Park only in designated parking spaces. I didn't and crushed the bumper against a pole.

萩市大字椿 字鹿背ケ坂 1258
1258 Tsubaki, Hagi-shi, Yamaguchi
Tel/Fax 0838 22 9889
Hours: 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. every day except Dec 29 – Jan 3.

© JapanVisitor.com

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Sunday, April 04, 2010

Japan This Week 4 April 2010

今週の日本

Japan News.Japanese Team Wins Pritzker Architecture Prize

New York Times

樱花与日本人

Caijing

How Japanese sushi offensive sank move to protect sharks and bluefin tuna

Guardian

Inédito japonés de Brecht

El Pais

Public school tuition waived

Japan Times

Cash-rich Chinese make a move for property bargains in Japan

Times Online

Voir Paris et défaillir, l'étrange mal japonais, par Frédéric Lemaître

Le Monde

Whaling words: Into the new

BBC

Hiromi: A Melodic (And Headbanging) Travelogue

NPR

Japan skaters Asada, Takahashi return home

Yahoo Sports

Last week's Japan news


Japan Statistics

Child abuse cases hit a new record in 2009. Child abuse cases soared by 15.6% over the previous year to 725.

This was in part due to greater reporting.

However, rights abuses overall - of which child abuse is one - declined 0.9% to 21,218.

Source: Ministry of Justice

Ten countries - eight from Africa - now have moved their diplomatic services from Tokyo to Beijing. For those needing diplomatic services related to Japan for the countries listed below, you will have to deal with an embassy in Beijing:

Burundi, Cyprus, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Malta, Niger, Republic of Congo, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Togo

Source: Kyodo News

Japan's consumer price index declined 1.2% in February, compared to the same month a year earlier.

Source: Yomiuri Shinbun

Average year-end bonuses at companies with at least five employees dropped by 9.3% from the previous year.

The average bonus totaled 380,258 yen (roughly $4,000). That is the first time since 1990 that the figure has dropped below 400,000.

Source: Yomiuri Shinbun

© JapanVisitor

Saturday, April 03, 2010

National Museum of Art Osaka

Osaka International Museum国立国際美術館大阪

Osaka does have culture, and not just manzai comedy, bunraku puppet theater, and its overrated cuisine.

The National Museum of Art (NMOA), for example, is an amazing cultural center - and building - that houses its galleries underground.

To approach the museum is to come upon an extra terrestrial structure smack in the middle of a banal cityscape.

NMOA opened in 1977, and was later redesigned by Cesar Pelli. The Argentine architect's work opened in 2004.

The striking exterior pictured above right was the work of Yoshio Hayakawa, and is said to represent an image of the museum reaching towards the sky.

You enter and then are directed to ride an escalator down to the lobby. This is where tickets are sold; there are also lockers and the requisite museum store.

Once you have your ticket and enter, you continue down. You ride several escalators down to the galleries in Level 3. From there you work your way back up.

Next door is the Osaka Science Museum.

Access

A short walk from Watanabe bashi Station on the Keihan Line. A 10 - 15 minute walk from City Hall, at Yodoyabashi.

Information

Open 10 - 5 pm (last entry at 4:30), closed Mondays and national holidays
Tel: 06 6447 4680
Fees: 420 yen (separate charge for special exhibitions)

Upcoming Exhibit

Renoir: Tradition and Innovation
17 April - 27 June, 2010

National Musuem of Art Osaka© JapanVisitor.com

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Friday, April 02, 2010

Shamanism Workship Kyoto & Tokyo

The Foundation for Shamanic Studies
シャーマニズム研究財団

"Shamanism is a path of knowledge, not of faith, and that knowledge cannot come from me or anyone else in this reality. To acquire that knowledge, including the knowledge of the reality of the spirits, it is necessary to step through the shaman's doorway and acquire empirical evidence."

Michael Harner, Ph.D.
FSS Founder and President
Author of The Way of the Shaman

The Basic Workshop in Core Shamanism (Weekend)

Kyoto: May 15 - 16, 2010
Tokyo: May 27 - 28, 2010

Core Shamanism

Core shamanism is the universal or near-universal principles and practices of shamanism not bound to any specific cultural group or perspective, as originated, researched, and developed by Michael Harner. Since the modern world overwhelmingly lost its shamanic knowledge centuries ago due to political and religious oppression, the Foundation’s programs in core shamanism are particularly intended for modern peoples to reacquire access to their rightful spiritual heritage through quality workshops and training courses. Training in core shamanism includes teaching students to alter their consciousness through classic shamanic non-drug techniques such as repetitive drumming so that they can discover their own hidden spiritual resources, transform their lives, and learn how to help others. Core shamanism does not focus on ceremonies, such as those of Native Americans, which are part of the work of medicine men and women, persons who do both shamanism and ceremonial work.

Michael Harner's
The Way of the Shaman: Shamanic Journeying, Power, and Healing

The Basic Workshop in Core Shamanism (Weekend)

Kyoto: May 15 - 16, 2010
Tokyo: May 27 - 28, 2010

During the Basic experiential workshop, participants are introduced to core shamanism, the universal and near-universal basic methods of the shaman to enter non-ordinary reality for problem solving and healing.

Particular emphasis is on the classic shamanic journey, one of the most remarkable visionary methods used by humankind to explore the hidden universe otherwise known mainly through myth and dream. Participants are initiated into shamanic journeying, aided by drumming and other techniques for experiencing the shamanic state of consciousness and for awakening dormant spiritual abilities, including connections with Nature. Practice includes comparisons by participants of their discoveries in shamanic journeys as well as being introduced to shamanic
divination and healing. They are also provided with methods for journeying to meet and study with their own individual spirit helpers in nonordinary reality, a classic step in shamanic practice. Participants learn how the journey is utilized to restore spiritual power and health, and how shamanism can be applied in contemporary daily life to help heal oneself, others, and the Planet. Basic and Advanced courses to be continuously offered in Japan and Asia.

The Foundation for Shamanic Studies Faculty for Asia: Kevin Turner
shamanismjapan@yahoo.co.jp
Tel/fax: 075-723-4379

English website: www.shamanism.org
Japanese website: www.shamanism.org/workshops/japanese.html

Kevin Turner’s English bio: www.shamanism.org/fssinfo/turnerbio.html

Kevin Turner's site: www.shamanism-asia.com

シャーマニズム研究財団

The Foundation for Shamanic Studies

「シャー マニズムとは、知識の道であって信仰の道ではない。そしてその知識は、私や或はこのリアリティ(現実)における他の誰からも得ることは出来ない。精霊達の 現実に関する知識を含むこの知識を身につけるには、シャーマンの門戸をくぐり、自らの経験を通して証拠を掴んでいかねばならない。」

マイケル・ハーナー Michael Harner, Ph.D
シャーマニズム研究財団創設者及び財団長
『シャーマンへの道』著者


コア・シャーマニズム
Core Shamanism

コア・シャーマニズム(核心のシャーマニズム)とは、マイケル・ハーナーが考案、研究、発展させた、シャーマニズムにおけるほぼ普遍的と言える原理とその 実践のことであり、いかなる特定の文化組織や観点とも結びつくものではない。シャーマニックな知識の大方は、政治的/宗教的弾圧が原因で、何世紀も前に甚 だしく失われてしまった。その様な背景から当財団のコア・シャーマニズムのプログラムは、現代人が良質のワークショップやトレーニングを通して、正当な精 神的文化遺産との繋がりを取り戻せるようにすることを意図している。コア・シャーマニズムのトレーニングでは、参加者が意識を変性させていく際に、繰り返 されるドラムの音の様な伝統的シャーマニズムの非薬物的手法を使い、参加者がどのように自らの隠された精神的源泉を発見し、人生を変容させ、また他者の助 けとなっていけるか、ということも教えられる。コア・シャーマニズムは、例えばネイティブアメリカン達が行う様なセレモニー(儀式)には主眼を置かない。 これらは、シャーマニズムと儀式行為の両方を行うメディスンマンやメディスンウーマン達の仕事の一部である。

シャーマンへの道:シャーマンの旅、パワーとヒーリング

コア・シャーマニズム公式ベーシックワークショップ

The Way of the Shaman workshop

ベーシックの体験的ワークショップでは、参加者はシャーマンのほぼ普遍的基本体系であるコア(核心の)・シャーマニズムに触れ、問題解決やヒーリングの為 に非日常的リアリティへと入っていく。 ここで特に重要視されるのが古典的なシャーマンの旅である。これは、人類が隠された宇宙を探究する為に使った、最も注目に値する先見的な手法であり、この 手法無しには、隠された宇宙は主に神話や夢を通してのみしか知り得ないものであった。 参加者はシャーマンの旅をする手ほどきを受け、ドラムの音やその他のテクニックの助けを得ながらシャーマン的意識状態を体験し、大自然と繋がることを含む 眠っているスピリチュアルな能力を目覚めさせていく。 またシャーマンの旅の中での発見について、参加者同士で話し合ったり、シャーマンの直感的予見やヒーリングにも実習の中で触れていく。 更に、旅をする中での非日常的リアリティにて自らのスピリットヘルパーと出会い、そこから学んでいくというシャーマンの実践に於ける古典的ステップの方法 も伝授される。 このように参加者達は、この旅が如何にして自らのスピリチュアルなパワーや健康を回復させるのに役立つのか、また如何にしてシャーマニズムが現代の日常生 活の中で自分や他人を癒したり、この惑星を癒すことに適用できるのかを学ぶ。

マイケル・ハーナーによるコースデザイン講師:ケヴィン・ターナー

■京都市:4月3日(土)〜4日(日)
モンロー研究所公式コース(通訳あり)
ゲートウェイ・エクスカージョン 33,000円

■ 京都市:5月15日(土)〜16日(日)
シャーマニズム研究財団公式コース
シャーマンへの道 (通訳あり)33,000円

■ 京都市:5月22日(土)〜23日(日)定員10名( 通訳あり)
レベル1:コーディネート・リモートヴューイング(CRV)37,000 円

■ 東京都世田谷区:5月29日(土)〜30日(日)
シャーマニズム研究財団公式ワークショップ
シャーマンへの道 (通訳あり)33,000円

© JapanVisitor.com

Thursday, April 01, 2010

US To Pull Out of Okinawa Japan Institutes Military Draft

米軍沖縄を撤退、日本1945年以来徴兵制導入

United States Secretary of Defense Robert Gates announced today that all US military forces will be pulling out of Okinawa. All US bases, facilities, and land will be returned to Okinawa, in a graduated withdrawal to begin this summer and be complete by the end of 2012.

The surprise announcement came after tense negotiations between the Obama Administration and the new government of Yukio Hatoyama.

"In close consultation with our Japanese partners, we have come to a detailed and comprehensive agreement that will in two years remove all US troops from Okinawa. This will end more than 50 years of US bases in Okinawa," Gates said.

The presence of the bases - and the accompanying crime, noise, and general disruption - has been a thorn in the side of many Japanese governments and the bane of life for residents of the smallest Japanese prefecture.

US forces are set to move air operations to Guam, and land troops to an uninhabited island near Hawaii.

To appease Hatoyama's coalition partners, among them the People's New Party, the US originally agreed to the proposal that Camp Futenma's functions be moved to the US Marine Corps' Camp Schwab in Nago, also in Okinawa.

However that would have involved constructing a helicopter runway in an inland area within the camp. Environmental groups and local activists squashed that.

At that point, both sides appeared to be out of ideas.

A solution emerged from an unlikely source: Tokyo governor and revisionist historian Shintaro Ishihara. He suggested that, in exchange for a complete US withdrawal, Japan itself agree to carry more of the defense burden.

Ishihara: "Young men in Japan today are make-up wearing, vegetable-eating, testerone-deprived, cell phone-obsessed mamma's boys. This agreement will rid Okinawa of the colonial power, and at the same time put our boys back in uniform - and make men out them. It's a win-win situation for Japan."

Japan's Self Defense Forces (SDF) are now preparing for an onslaught of conscripts. All 18-year-old males will have to register, and beginning January 1, 2011, enlist for a period of one year.

Both sides immediately agreed to Ishihara's proposal, though vocal protests are expected in leftist circles in Japan and demonstrations are scheduled this week at Kyoto University.

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