Japanese Culture

Japan has an amazing culture; the way they dress, their types of food, their religions, and more! One thing I really like about Japan is their dancing. Dancing is a big part of Japanese Culture. A type of dancer there is called a Geisha. A Geisha’s job is to dance for other people. The Japanese Geisha has been know in Japan ever since the 11th century. Beginning in the 11th century, two women created a dance and performed for two warriors by dressing in white attire, which was the warriors’ court apparel. This dance caught on to other women and became more popular in Japanese culture. It was believed that for a certain time, it was men who dressed in women attire, and they were considered Geishas. However, in the 1700’s, the trend of the Geisha erupted in popular culture. The use of white makeup, elaborate kimonos, and wooden shoes became the new look of the Geisha. In 1779, Japanese authorities were dissatisfied with the conduct of the Geisha because they didn’t properly pay their taxes and wages appropriately. A code of conduct was established and to this day, it is still upheld.

Japanese Traditional Geisha

Three Geisha

Japanese Geisha Painting

Another cultural thing I like is the Traditional Japanese Tea Ceremony. The Japanese Tea Ceremony, also called the Way of Tea, is a cultural Japanese activity involving the ceremonial preparation and presentation of matcha, powdered green tea. In Japanese, it’s called chanoyu or chadō. The art of its performance is called temae. Zen Buddhism was a primary influence in the development of the tea ceremony. Tea gatherings are classified as chakai or chaji. Chakai is a simple course of hospitality that includes the service of confections, thin tea, and a light meal. Chaji is a more formal gathering, usually with a full-course meal or kaiseki, followed by confections, thick tea or koicha, and thin tea. A chaji can last up to four hours.

Outdoors Tea Ceremony

Inside Japanese Tea Ceremony

Japanese Tea Ceremony

A third thing in Japan that’s part of its wild beauty is the Japanese Kimono. The kimono is a big part of Geisha and the tea ceremony. Without the kimono, Japan wouldn’t be at all how we imagine it currently. The kimono is a Japanese traditional garment worn by women, men and children. The word “kimono”, which literally means a “thing to wear” (“ki” means “wear” and “mono” means “thing”), has come to symbolize these full-length robes. The standard plural of the word kimono in English is kimonos, but the unmarked Japanese plural kimono is also sometimes used. Kimonos are T-shaped, straight-lined robes worn so that the hem falls to the ankle, with attached collars and long, wide sleeves. Kimonos are wrapped around the body, always with the left side over the right, and secured by a sash called an obi, which is tied at the back. Kimonos are generally worn with traditional footwear, especially zōri or geta, and split-toe socks called tabi. Today, kimonos are most often worn by women on special occasions. Traditionally, unmarried women wore a style of kimono called furisode, with almost floor-length sleeves, on special occasions. A few older women and even fewer men still wear the kimono on a daily basis. Men wear the kimono most often at weddings, tea ceremonies, and other very special or very formal occasions. Professional sumo wrestlers are often seen in the kimono because they are required to wear a traditional Japanese dress whenever appearing in public.

Kimono

Kimono

Kimono Store

Traditional Japanese Wedding Kimono

Zori

Geta

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