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Cette page est rédigée intentionnellement en anglais afin de rejoindre un plus large public.
This page is been intentionally written in english in order to reach the most people possible.
のページは意図的に、ほとんどの人が可能性に到達するために英語で書かれています。


Mises à jour / historique / Update and website history / 更新とウェブサイトの歴史
 

ISUNA's PASSION FOR JAPAN

Japan sure is a fascinating country. ISUNA let you here discover about each and every little things that makes this country so fabulous (or lesser in some occasions..). There have been many things and many blogs written about myriads of subjects which talks more or less about Japan, or Japanese stuff, but let's try here to sort out some of the best of it. One of the main goal is to put up here information which has been validated and/or is believed to reflect the reality of Japan to the best of my knowledge! It is also a page where I will explain my perception of this nice country.

Please enjoy!

*** IMPORTANT NOTICE  : READ THE DISCLAIMER BEFORE READING ***

INTRODUCTION : Why Japan ?   ∆ BACK ∆

Japan. For many people in the west, this country located in the Far East (as we like to locate it) is usually considered as a far, mystical land which has always sparked curiosity and questioning.
There have been numerous notable people in the history of the world who tried to decipher thoroughly the culture and the psychological and philosophical characteristics of its inhabitants. Very few have succeeded.

Today with the world bustling with new technologies, many ways to transfer and access information and unaccountable social medias ; with travelling around the globe made easy and affordable, everyone keen to travel comes to Japan as in a country like many others. But is it?
Japan is a unique country, one that many fails to get, if even only, a glimpse of : how it has evolved, how it has managed itself through times, wars, disasters… and many social influences that makes it the wonderful country that it is today.

Of course everything is not perfect in Japan. But many things makes it a good place to live, even for foreigners / immigrants, as long as they are keen to embrace the culture.

But "why Japan" you ask?

This is a tricky question. Driven by the feelings, some people choose to come to this country and find themselves, or find answers to what they were searching in life. Some will go back after the first trip, the first two weeks or months, and some will stay forever, or try to do so...

The way the people are and the way things are done is Japan is just so different and kind, because the people think about each others. This country is composed of only a couple (thousands) islands after all. So, taking it back from the old times, if you do something wrong, there nowhere else to go, so people must behave.
If only the rest of the world would work that way. There are many things that every other country in the world could benefit learning from Japan.

VISITING JAPAN 101   ∆ BACK ∆

In this section, ISUNA provide a small guide with links on how it is recommended to behave while visiting Japan. As with many things, some manners may or may not be quite as expected to be readily abode to, especially by foreigners. But those recommendations remains good indications on what is usually correct.
Use the information described in this section at your own risk! ISUNA is not to be held reponsible for any encounters or mishaps resulting in the use of the provided information.

- RESTAURANT AND EATING MANNERS

 

CHAPTER ONE : A Little bit of history   ∆ BACK ∆

Many people will remember Japan because of the World War II. Some will actually automatically associate it with WW II. Japan suffered a catastrophic and humiliating defeat as the militaristic ideas of the country couldn’t have been suppressed by opposition before a world conflict sparks :
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_militarism#Opposition_to_militarism
This war completely disfigured the country and marked the starting point of what now makes Japan as it is today.

Today, the scars of war are long gone. Most people you would ask weren’t even born and so they have obviously nothing to do with that part of history.
In some ways, we could consider Japan as being a victim of that world conflict. At a time when communications were still problematic, understanding of foreign cultures still
embryonic, many nations wouldn’t understand where they were going exactly. Pretty much everything was being done on a trial/error basis and being driven by the forces of wrongful people made the way harder for some of them.
We can’t simply just put the blame on anyone in particular.

But let's move on to brighter parts of history. The culture in Japan is still very present and each and every part of Japan has its own festival and celebrations, at different times of the year. The many national holidays and special days contribute to keep the culture well rooted. The social part of the festival events are a good way to get the people to work together too. Since the ancient times, forged by the mixed psychology of Buddhism and Shinto the different aspects and rituals processed at these festivals are respected meticulously. Most of the time, the traditional attire and costumes are part of the ceremonies.

The country used to be run by some fearless, treacherous samurais and shoguns that were led by the gods, tracing back to the Shinto philosophy which was established in the ancient times. Those people had very unpredictable minds but many of the decisions they tooks were wise enough to rule the country in a very strict manner, thus making the people quite frightened and respectuous of each other.

In the 1860's when a new era began, the western things and manners were imported to Japan, changing forever the face of the strictly organized and treacherous manners carried by the shogunate era.
The Meiji restauration called in for upgrades in culture, technology and know-how. The country benefited greatly of what different countries brought in.
Along the years, it evolved but Japan took what it wanted and rejected the rest, adapting the good things for its people. But it's pretty much only after WWII that things started to get exciting.
                                                                                                                                                                                        

CHAPTER TWO : A perfect balance   ∆ BACK ∆

Education in Japan, which has been forged by ages of Confucianism and the great discoveries of the Meiji Restoration, has played a major role in making Japan one of the most advanced countries in the world (and the first one at some point). There is a way of doing things in community, together for the good of everyone. In this complex relationship with themselves, people abide by the unwritten psychological challenge of forgetting oneself in order to accomplish their tasks in the most efficient manner, ultimately in the spirit of the majority’s thinking. There is no individualism inducement in the education nor in the working environment of the majority of Japan today. In the family or at school, children learn to value what’s important for the good of everybody, from dressing up in the morning to riding the train, from helping cleaning the school rooms to learning basic things like gardening, swimming and accounting.

People in Japan, especially in big cities, tends to always dress nicely in order not only to be proud of themselves or to be accepted as a part of the working society by wearing the appropriate suit, but they do it also to be nice to the other’s eyes. After all, nobody wants to see people dressed with disdain, old clothes, clothes that doesn’t match or fit the body we have… Name it. You probably have some example of people with no fashion sense at all in your own country. People in Japan have style. Especially women, most of them take really good care of their looks, may have a certain (read good) sense of dressing femininely, and if this is OK with them, well, it is beautiful.

This may sparks a whole debate about how feminity and female rights and women are treated in Japan.

Many people come to Japan with their point of vue from the west and prioritizing that women must be equal to men and women rights has many specific caracteristics that must be respected. In Japan, the point of view that emanes from the west is widely unknown and is subject to imcomprehension from pretty much everyone. Because the way things works here for men and women is widely accepted and has been since the ancient times. It is part of the culture. Men and women here are different and play their own parts in the game of life. Everything here has a certain balance and as foreigners, messing with this balance can pretty much sparks some frustration from Japanese people.

In short, what you think is wrong with some people, may not be wrong in their own world, anywhere you go. Many people cannot assume that and are too hard-headed to even try to understand that. This is a shame because some very well-educated people, with knowledge, from University, people that has studied about Japan, cannot come to think that the way some things are in Japan cannot be changed because western people think it should.
It's Japan after all, and you cannot tell Japan what to do.

Things in Japan work swiftly sweeter than many other places in the world. The security is very high, crime rate very low... By changing some things to be like what is in the western world would probably only affect negatively the statistics.
Again, everything is related somehow to the psychology of the ancient Buddhism and Shinto teachings...

This may sounds like a catch phrase in a movie but, in Japan, you got to keep going with the established balance.


                                                                                                                                                                                        
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