The Japanese and experiencing nature in the seasons

Japanese people are very proud of their seasons. Or, you should probably say the stark differences between each season. But without experiencing it, it’s hard to see what the fuss is about. Today, I felt it though.

I walked to the five story pagoda of Mt. Haguro. I went there a few weeks ago when there was about a foot of snow, but today there was more than a metre. I don’t mean on the sides of the path, I mean the path was literally below a metre of snow.

What was interesting about that though, was that a new path had been formed on top of all that snow that takes you on a slightly different route than you would usually go. I’m talking a difference of maybe 50cm max, but also I could get right up to the Jijisugi, the grandfather cedar, and got a completely different view than normal.

When the Japanese talk about seasons, I think they’re talking about the different ways we can experience nature through the seasons.

Every day you go out is different, which means every day you go out has a different way of delighting you. And that is where I believe the attraction lies.



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Tim Bunting Kiwi Yamabushi

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Sakata City, Yamagata, Japan

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