Japanese Cemeteries

 

You weren’t expecting a post like this, huh?

Japanese cemeteries are beautiful. They’re quite different to the western cemeteries that I’m definitely used to seeing, and I never really wondered about their significance when I was a child visiting Japan. The scenery of a cemetery here, well, makes death not seem so bad.

It’s not only the scenery, but the amount of thought and respect that is put into each visit – cleansing an ancestor’s grave, lighting an incense stick, leaving cordial gifts; all in remembrance and gratitude of them.

Of course, all graveyards are different, but 勝光院 (shoukouinn), is the name of the beautiful cemetery which has been partly captured below.

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shrine

 

If you are to ever come across a cemetery in Japan and wonder why people are cleaning a relative’s grave, lighting an incense stick (御線香 osenko), or are just interested in Japanese culture surrounding cemeteries, this blogpost may be interesting to you.

お墓 (おはか) ohaka  – a cemetery

お墓参り (おはかまえり) ohakamairi – the act of visiting a cemetery

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