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Christmas in Japan [message #333555] Sun, 04 December 2016 18:15
Brian is currently offline  Brian
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Registered: February 2012
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One time in the comments of a youtube review of either Tenchi: daughter
of darkness or Tokyo Godfathers, I found the statement that said that in
Japan the secular parts of Christimas are celebrated, but that very few
people celebrate it for religious regions.

I think I have found the original quote: "... Christianity is a minor
religion in Japan and as a result they don't celebrate Christmas like we
do in the west. They've adopted some of the lights and other
decorations... A day to buy gifts and cake and share it with your
significant other..."

I also seem to recall seeing a response, which I cannot now seem to
find (that is why I am not 100% sure that the comment I quoted above is
not the original one I found, but it was very similar) that said
something along the lines of the original poster of the quote above is
probably an atheist firing another shot in Bill O'Reilley's and Sarah
Palin's stupid nonsense about "a war on Christmas."

Well, the OP might or might not be an atheist, but he can also do some
basic research on the internet. About 1% of the population of Japan is
Christian, and much of that is Europeans/Americans who live at places
like the embassy or representatives of European/American companies who
live in Japan, making a very small portion of native Japanese
Christians. Those that are Christian probably celebrate Christmas in a
very "Christian" way

Many of the traditions (the tree, the time of year - going by the
"biblical evidence", Jesus was probably born in late summer like July or
August, or in fact celebrating it at all) come from paganism, (just
google "pagan origins of Christimas"), so in my opinion, the most
"Christian" way of celebrating Christmas is to ignore it entirely. The
Jehovah's Witnesses don't celebrate Christmas in part because of it's
pagan origins (at least to my understanding), and as much as I hate to
admit that they got something right, they got that right.

I found the following quote from one of the creators of Evangelion,
Kazuya Tsurumaki: "There are a lot of giant robot shows in Japan, and
we did want our story to have a religious theme to help distinguish us.
Because Christianity is an uncommon religion in Japan we thought it
would be mysterious. None of the staff who worked on Eva are Christians.
There is no actual Christian meaning to the show, we just thought the
visual symbols of Christianity look cool. If we had known the show would
get distributed in the US and Europe we might have rethought that choice."

I suppose this would be sort of analogous to if I were to write a story
about a bank heist, make a doujinshi based on that story, and use the
Hindu gods for my character designs.

I have no idea if an actual Hindu would look at this and think one of
the following: "big deal, he used some Hindu gods as character designs
beacause they look cool," which would be my actual motivation; "this
comic is heretical and disrespectful;" or perhaps even something like
"this comic has some hidden philosophical points" if I used the Hindu
equivalent of Satan for my character design (I am not any kind of expert
on Hinduism, but there must be someone in that pantheon who is the
equivalent of Satan.)

Brian Christiansen
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