Japan is not a country where you only come to wander around sightseeing. Here, more than anywhere else, you had better try new experiences and appreciate Japanese Spirituality.
The Land of Zen
Although Zen has its origins in China (namely Chan Buddhism), Japan took it to another level, and developed for centuries endemic innovations such as Zen gardens or extremely refined tea ceremony. It is now one of the most authentic Japanese experiences for you to enjoy here.
The Way of Tea, the ritual to appreciate the essence of the Japanese Spirit to the full
If you are a tea fiend, don’t you miss on the opportunity to try genuine Japanese green tea: it is considered here more than a mere beverage.
Picture yourself in the serene atmosphere of a remote teahouse within a sacred Shinto shrine. Right in front of you, a master is preparing the ever so delicate Macha, with the greatest respect for traditions. It is also the perfect chance for you to taste Wagashi, savory and colorful Japanese sweets, along with this delicious brew characterized by its luminous green shade.
Empty your Mind through Zazen, the Seated Meditation
One of the greatest things you will immediately notice about Japan is you can always escape from the city without actually having to leave it. On this luxuriant island, solemn shrines are secretly isolated, sheltered by majestic forests. Yet, you will be surprised to always find them neighboring over-crowded areas and endless buildings.
That is why Japan is seen as one of places best suited for you to give meditation a try and cultivate your inner peace. In a quiet environment with nothing around to hinder you, a priest will guide you step by step on the way to enlightenment. Taking part in Zazen means getting one step closer towards the understanding of Japan’s peaceful philosophy, but also towards your inner-self, a paramount endeavor that unfortunately people tend to overlook too often in our day and age.
Natural Hot Spring Onsen, a Blessing of Mother Earth to Japan
We often hear about how frequent earthquakes, tsunamis and typhoons are in the Land of the Rising Sun. Some people even talk about curses and bad fortune. However, although it’s true that Japan counts nearly 20% of the world’s earthquakes, everything is meticulously built to resist, and material damage is extremely rare.
The other side of the coin is, the Japanese really are blessed by Nature’s gifts. In the rich, abundant and fertile lands, the magmatic activity created plenty of heavenly places called Onsen. If you are looking for authentic Japanese experiences, this is a must.
Why, you ask? Because there is no country on this earth as impregnated with bathing culture as Japan. From the mountain hot springs surrounded by the powder snow of Hokkaido to the paradisiac and tropical atmosphere of Setouchi, there is an infinite number of places waiting for you to dip and relax.