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Japanese Christmas

Chiristmas in Japan is quite different from western countries.

Since our major religions are Buddhism and Shinto, originally, in old days,
we didn't have traditions to celebrate Christmas. But since after the western cultures
have started to be introduced in Japan,  Christmas became more popular
and people started to adopt it in their lives in their ways.

Christmas in Japan is more commercial event, so Dec. 25th is not a national holiday.
The funny fact is that during the night of De. 25th, all the Christmas decorations
in town is gone and the totally different decorations for the New Year will be set instead
just like a magic.
The biggest Christmas tree in Hiroshima

When the Christmas season is coming, you will see a lot of Christmas decorations
 all over town, all over Japan.
Here in Hiroshima, the huge display of Christmas lights called "Dreamination"
is set up and lighten up this time of year and a lot of people gather not only from
Japan but also from other countries to enjoy it.
Hiroshima Dreamination

Of course, people enjoy Christmas at home, too. When in December, many of us, especially
parents, get busy putting up the Christmas trees, researching their kids
 what they want from Santa Clause, making reservations for
Christmas cakes and so on..
On Christmas eve, some people enjoy  special meals with their families at home,
some people go out to town and have dinner at nice restaurants, and some have
parties. Since Christmas is not our original event, I don't think Japanese Christmas
religiously makes any sense.

But just like in the western countries, Christmas is an exciting event
mostly for Children.  Many children believe in Santa Clause and
they go to sleep on Dec. 24th wishing that he brings them presents
while they are asleep.
Usually in Japan, parents put Christmas presents besides their children sleeping
and next morning, they will find the presents with excitement.
I've heard that even Children give presents to parents for Christmas in
western countries but in Japan, we usually don't :(

Anyway, my 8-year-old son, Yugo still believe in Santa Clause, of course
and is now so excited about the Christmas day coming very soon!
Whether whatever religion we believe in , St.Nicholas keeps bringing dreams
to children all over the world, I guess.
  1. 2010/12/24(金) 23:23:00|
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